Nemesis

I’ve reached the sleeves. On the sweater. I haven’t done well with sleeves in quite some time. At the beginning of the summer I had a bad case of the SSS – Second Sleeve Syndrome, one that I have still not recovered for and the sweater in question does still only have one sleeve. For this one I blame the pattern a bit too, it’s so poorly written that I wonder if anyone has test knitted for it, but apparentely someone has knit at least the pics in the book. Luckily, because you need to look at them in order to be able to move on with the sweater at all. I’m pretty sure that if I had followed the pattern literally I would have ended up with a sweater that no human being could ever wear. Well, perhaps as scarf, but no way as a sweater.

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I’ll finish it though. Someday. Hopefully someday soon.

Next there was the pink and white Chanel jacket. On that one I didn’t even make it to the second sleeve, I got stuck already on the first, somewhere around the mid-upper arm. When that will be finished, I have no idea. I like the pattern but I didn’t feel I was making progress and after knitting the fronts and back, which was something huge, I needed progress and to feel that I was moving towards the finish line.

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I think I need a lot of patience and time before I’ll pick it up again, perhaps sometime after Christmas.

So yeah, now it’s this little thing. Will I make it this time or will I give up just under the elbow?

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I guess we’ll just have to wait and see.

 

What’s in a name?

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Yesterday was bobbin lace class. My Flimsy Princess is done, or at least 20 centimeters of it, and I’ve started on a new lace – Three weave bottoms. Some lace names are just boring, this is like calling a sweater Stockinette Sweater. Informative but tells you nothing. What does this remind the designer of? What gave the designer the idea of this lace? This name sounds more like a test lace, an exercise to practise your weave bottoms (I have no idea what the different moves in bobbin lace is called in English so I’m just translating the Swedish ones, enlighten me or bear

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with me). Why would I put a test lace as embellishment somewhere? And I don’t think this lace is a test lace either, it’s pretty and deserves a pretty name.

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I’m not sure what, though. From this angle it looks a bit like a crown or a pot of flowers. Crown Lace, could that be it? I’ll have to think about it for a while but it’s definitely worth more than what it’s got so far. One of my class mates is making a lace called Rose Quarter, which is really pretty. Someone else is making Icicles. Yet another one is making this guy along with the three ladies from the book by Elsa Beskow to form this. It’s all quite cool and so is my lace, it just doesn’t have a very romantic name. I’m on it, though.

Who are you?

The best thing about ordering yarn is that you get yarn in the mail and yarn in the mail, that’s my kind of mail. Yarn and Princess Post, those are the best. And invitations. Pretty much anything handwritten but since I am a sucker for packages I really like getting yarn in the mail.

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This arrived today. Two skeins of hand dyed yarn from Nerd Girl Yarns. The color is Tardis Blue. I don’t understand half of the references to TV-shows and such at the Nerd Girl Yarns’ webpage (the ones I do get are hilarious though), I just know that the yarn is fabulous, but Agnieszka has explained most of them too me and it’s also she who has ordered this yarn. It’s supposed to become a tardis shawl. Apparentely that’s a reference from a TV-show called Dr Who. As you know, Agnieszka doesn’t knit but from her reactions to a picture of this yarn on twitter right now, she might start if I don’t cast on this shawl at the first possible moment. That or she’ll threaten me with my own dpns. I’ll lock the door though, I still have a sweater to finish. And, the first possible moment is a comparative term.

Spring in September

My beret is, as I’ve mentioned before, finished and has accompanied me to work and down town and to my book club and everywhere. It’s still not cold enough to wear a hat during the day but early in the morning and in the evenings you could need a hat.

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This is the Is it spring yet? hat by Constance M.Cole, knit in Malabrigo Yarn Silky Merino, color 429 Cape Cod Gray. It is the perfect color for my spring (and fall) coat.

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I had some problems while blocking it. I didn’t want it to be too big so I tried to block it over a side dish but that was too small. So was a regular plate. Eventually I found a platter that could fit. (Sounds a bit like Goldilocks, doesn’t it?)

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I had to reknit the ribbing that goes around the head though. It was just too big. Luckily this is a top-down beret so it was pretty easy to unravel and reknit with a lot smaller needles. I used 2,5 mm needles in the end but I should probably have decreased the number of stitches as well because it’s still a little big.

It only took one skein which surprised me, I had prepared for two, but now I have enough yarn to knit a cowl or something too.

The hat maker

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I always remember late August and early September as a time of being cold. Not this year, this year the weather has been exceptionally good but when I think back, this time of year is a time of being cold. When I was younger I used to do outdoor theater in the evening the last two weeks of August and there was always at least one evening when we had to cancel due to bad weather and heavy rain. The weather had to be really bad for us to cancel, just a little rain was not enough, it had to be bad. On one or two occasions over the years we also had to stop mid-play because it was impossible to go on anymore.

In the first scene of the play some of us, mostly girls, were dressed in cotton tunics and the rest, mostly boys, wore thick woolen capes. We were standing backstage just before the plays was about to begin, it was about eight o’clock and we, tunics wearing ones, were freezing so bad. This made for an arrangement where most of us picked someone of the cape wearing crowd to share a cape with. A few glorious moments where you were finally a little warm and also had the opportunity to be close to someone you might think a little cute. And also the opposite, a chance to help a damsel in distress, or at least a cold actress, by offering her to get in under your cape with you. Then the play started and you had to leave that cozy cape and the sometimes cute cape wearer but once on stage you usually forgot about the cold (until you had to kneel in a puddle).

After the week of theater was done we had a big party and when the older actors went home to their warm beds, the younger ones stayed out to continue the party all night (which usually meant that we hung out on a playground singing children’s and other songs together and occasionally tried some peppermint schnapps. We all smelled very fresh after that). Those nights were also very cold.

One year I had a crush on someone in the group and I thought that this party would be a good time to try to get close to that person. I did what you do when you’re 19 and you just want someone to put their arm around you; I mentioned that I was freezing. And most young men would have seen a chance to put an arm around a girl because when you are 19 you can’t express your want for a little closeness in any other way than to play this little game. Unfortunately for me (and probably for him too) this person was a scout and very pragmatic, he told me to put on a hat and left it at that. I didn’t have a hat and that night me and a friend of mine had to go to sleep in socks and sweaters over our pajamas under the bedcover because we had been out for too long in the cold and not dressed properly.

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A human being radiates most of its heat from the head so the advice to wear a hat was not bad at all but perhaps not the one that I wanted to hear at that time. Usually the hat premier is the Culture Night, the second Saturday in September every year. It’s hard to dress for that day because when you leave home in the afternoon it’s not that cold at all, but you will be out till late I the evening when it’s really chilly. Add crowded places wherever you go and that you really don’t want to carry too much. This means that you’re either sweaty or cold and, especially teenagers (or at least the teenagers that I knew when I was a teenager myself), prefer being cold in front of sweaty. A hat is the answer, it’s small so you can bring it with you and it really helps against the cold even if it doesn’t take care of it all. This plan to dress appropriately on the Culture Night is something that I have developed over the years. This year was the 25th Culture Night and I have probably been enjoying about 24 of them (I missed a year when I lived in France). I have experience (granted that I myself might not have choosen my clothes for at least five of them, you’re not that good at making wise dress choices when you’re three).

This year I’ve hurried to make sure to finish both mine and Julle’s hats before Culture Night. My beret has been done for a week but I weaved in the ends on Julle’s hat this morning, right before he left the house. I was meeting my mun and my aunt, the day was beautiful and warm and we went to a sing along with songs from the 19th century. We had a marvelous time, I got credit for being able to sing, read the song book and knit at the same time, we had coffee at an outdoor café and we continued our cultural efforts around town. When it was getting darker it also became chillier and I put on my hat.

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Later in the evening I met up with Julle, who had just experienced his first Culture Night. He was pleased but a little cold and I advised him to put on his hat. I turned out he had left it at home, hidden on top of the hat rack behind the bicycle helmet. Ah, what a rookie mistake, but you’ll get there next year, honey!

Radio silence

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Internet is still down but I’ve

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started on the sweater and I’ll just continue with that today. I think it might go much quicker than anticipated.
Have a good Sunday, everyone!

Transformation

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So far I’m making good progress on the plans I had for thisweekend. The hat is finished and the shawl is blocking and tomorrow I will start with the sweater. Now I’m going to read for an hour before it’s time to get going. The Internet is down in the apartment so I figure it’s an excellent time to get some reading done.

I’m pretty happy with the shawl and I’m excited to see it when it’s blocked. Even though I’m the one knitting it, it’s always a surprise to see the project first off the needles, then during the blocking and then when it’s blocked. The difference is huge! It’s an amazing transformation and it’s not until blocked that you can truly see that the effort you’ve put in really pays off.

My kind of mail

I’m a little busy. I’ve had some tough meetings today and a close encounter with an unfriendly copying machine just when I was headed home made me really happy it is Friday today. I have huge knitting plans for the weekend. I want to finish a hat and also a shawl and start a sweater. Also, I need to do some studying and some writing and reading but besides that I’m just going to knit.

When I came back home and looked in my mailbox this day became a million times better. In there was a note that I had a package to pick up.

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A huge package, totally my kind of fun because inside, inside was this:

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A plastic bag. And inside that bag:

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Yarn! My yarn order from Poland! I felt like a child on Christmas Eve (that’s when kids get their Christmas gifts in Sweden).

Now all weekend I’m going to play with these little cuties.

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So many pretty colors, both springy ones and fall ones and also a little winter.

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Just look at those yellows!
There are many projects in here. Hopefully a cardigan or two, a few shawls and wristwarmers and also some gifts.

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My projects right now are very dark and it will be a true delight to cast on some of these yarns and overindulge in color and light and prettiness.

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I’ve even got my hands on a brand of yarn that’s new to me, Holst garn. The colors are really pretty and I think I know people who would enjoy something from that for Christmas. (I really should stop just talking about Christmas and start to cast on instead, I’m kind of making myself stressed up about it. So, this weekend is about planning Christmas gifts and cast on a few so I feel that I make some progess.)

So yeah, I’m a little busy, I have yarn!

Lace use

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I’ve made some progress on my princess. I can see why it’s called Princess Points, it actually looks like a princess crown being formed on my lace pillow. It’s not flimsy either but quite delicate. I’ve been thinking about what to do with the little laces I make and where in my surroundings I can use a lace or two. Well, curtains, clothes and handkercheifs of course but it makes it harder to wash. I might trim a baby sweater with lace but that will have to be a sweater only to be worn on special occasions and I wouldn’t want to do that to a parent. Plus, how many special occasions can a baby enter before s/he grows out of it?

I think that I should be more creative than this and have come up with two more things to do with lace. One is to wrap them around nice jars of home made marmelade or jam and then give it away as Christmas gifts. The second is to use them to hang Christmas ornaments. For some reason lace seems more okay during Christmas. As do embroidered table cloths. Christmas is around the corner from a knitter’s perspective so I guess it’s not weird that I’ve been thinking about it lately.

If you have any other suggestion on what to do with the laces, just let me know!