Happy Galentine’s!

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I don’t celebrate Valentine’s day but I have embraced the concept of Galentine’s. So, to all my sweet, clever, strong, intelligent, beautiful and impressive friends…

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Happy Galentine’s! I wouldn’t be who I am today without you.

I can see a pattern here

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When I don’t have much time to knit I compensate by buying yarn. I don’t even notice this has happened until the third yarn package arrives and more are in the mail. This time it all got worse, not only is there no time to knit besides the Great Lace and bobbin lace, but I ordered some yarn on the Internet that looked very lime green and pretty on the picture and sure, I know that you can’t fully trust a screen picture, the colors are usually off (one of the many reasons I love magicloop.com.pl is because Agnieszka always has a written description of the yarn color as well, not to mention how it has helped me learn colors in Polish) but this time it was crazy. What arrived wasn’t a lovely lime but a mustard-y yellow (it looked like baby poop, as Jenny put it). Completely disgusting and it arrived on a day when I was feeling blue anyway and this didn’t help at all. I’m sending it back of course but I think that this incident has made me feel an urge to compensate heavily. First of all, I ordered a nice yellow (the one in the picture) so that I could return Agnieszka’s shawl. Next came pink and green and those three wonderful skeins to the right in the picture. I love them! Now all I need is time to knit because this is not sustainable. I will make a huge effort this weekend to make some lace and then maybe next week I will feel that I have time to actually knit my new lovely little skeins.

Any ideas for the second to the left?

Stella(r)

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Remember when I talked about the prettiest shade of pink ever? I hurriedly made this cardigan over Christmas and then quickly gave it away and I just found the pictures again and again it strikes me how perfect this shade of pink is. I need to get me some more of that. This pink was so pretty it was no problem to press out a cardigan in no time at all, had it been dark blue it would have been a nuisance but with this pink it was a pure delight.

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Also, the pattern is adorable. The lace at the yoke, the sleeves, it’s just too cute.

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I’m a little worried the neckline might be too wide (babies are surprisingly lacking in the shoulder area), I’ll try to get a review from the baby’s mother later, but other than that it’s perfect.

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Look at the sleeve! I love the shape of the cuff, from now on I will never make another kind of cuff again (or maybe not but it’s darn cute).

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I thought I had much more yarn than I had, I had forgotten about the pink narcissus pseudo-narcissus wristwarmers I made last summer and by the second sleeve the yarn was up.

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Luckily there are not much yarn needed for a little sleeve so I un-picked the bind off of the body and started to unravel as I continued knitting on the sleeve. Six unraveled rows later the sleeve was done and I could re-knit the cuff of the body. All in all, the yarn shortage might have shortened the cardigan about half an inch.

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Pattern: Stella by Linden Down. Yarn: Malabrigo sock. Colorway: Light of Love.

The city that never(?) sleeps

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There are few things I find so glamorours in the everyday life as going to a coffee house in the morning before work. It makes me feel like I’m in an American TV-show. I can pretend that my sweet little city, that I very much love, for a second has turned into New York and that I’m a glamorous career woman in high heels working with publishing or TV producing or something. (That is, until I take out my knitting just to make a few rows.) Yes, I might have watched a little too much Sex and the City in my days but this occurs also in Fame and in many other TV-shows and it looks very nice. There are not many coffee houses here that open early enough for this, I’m usually at work between 7:30 and 8 am and very few places open before 7:30. The other day though I had a meeting at a coffee hourse at 8:30 and I saw my chance. I made sure to be there way early and could spend a glorious half hour pretending I’m this big city hot shot who goes to coffee houses before work happily knitting away while the big city pulsates around me (if by pulsate you understand that I was sitting by a window so I could see an intersection). However, it wasn’t New York but it was nice none the less.

Decisions

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I’ve had a crazy busy weekend and I haven’t knit at all as much as I wanted to. I’ve been to the movies, I’ve been on a road trip, I’ve been into stores, I have had coffee and lots of other things has been going on. One of the best things where buttons, lots of buttons. And they’re mine now. The busy weekend made me reach a decision. There is just so much going on right now that I will have to focus on the most important and leave all other distractions. From now on it’s me and my two laces – the great lace and the bobbin lace. All other knitting is just a bonus and a bonus only. As long as the laces are progressing I’m doing good.

For the longest lace

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Bobbin lace class has started again for the semester and yester we met, eight bobbin lace makers, to make, well, lace. It was very nice, some bonding across generations and generally a good time.

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Experienced lace makers next to beginners and I love that we are on different levels in the class and make different laces. We can always learn from each other. Some of us had made a lot of lace over Christmas and some hadn’t even looked at a bobbin lace pillow since mid-December and it’s all okay. The class is what you want it to be and your way of taking the class doesn’t interfer with someone else’s. Not like in dance class when someone (me) wants to learn and practise and someone else (the lead) is just there to dance and not to learn new things. It’s very hard for me to practise new things if the lead isn’t interested but that doesn’t happen in bobbin lace class. There is less music in bobbin lace class too, come to think of it.

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Yesterday I officially reached 3 meters of lace and now I only have 7-8 meters left. That might sound discouraging but the longest Iace I’ve made before was 80 centimeters and this is much, much longer. Yay me!

Doesn’t mean there’s no color

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I’m going to stick my chin out a bit today. Do you remember last year, how horrible it was with all the gray and the lack of color? I feared this year would be the same and for that reason I have not started a gigantic dark blue lace project (and also because I’m not particularly fond of dark blue as it is and I already have a big dark blue lace shawl due to last year’s knitting). It hasn’t been as bad yet though and I think that has a lot to do with the fact that we don’t have forty eleven moving boxes everywhere around a dark livingroom anymore but has instead gotten quite a few nice lamps. Also, from the picture in the blog post linked above, it looks like the weather did everything to ruin people’s moods, especially mine.

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So far this year it hasn’t been as bad as last year, even though I instead of a huge blue lace am knitting an even bigger white lace but so far it’s okay. White means light. White means snow which means light. And I try to think very carefully before I cast something on and so far it hasn’t been a complete disaster. We’re only in the beginning of February though, there’s still time to break down but let’s just hope it doesn’t happen.

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Pattern: Full Spectrum by Cindy Garland. Yarn: Stunning Superwash from Stunning String Studio. Colorway: I have no idea, this was a year long MKAL and there are ball bands everywhere but not necessarily where I happen to look.

Knit for a knitter

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I have probably mentioned this before but every now and then I start thinking about knitting and knitters. Is it okay to knit for a knitter? When I first started thinking about it I thought that no, a knitter knows what s/he wants and makes that for herself. Then I started thinking, who else knows and can really appreciate the the time and effort spent on something knitted? The answer is obvious – a knitter of course. Who knows how to take care of knitted stuff? A knitter! Knitters are not all alike, some love lace weight yarn, others have a great passion for worsted weight, some adore lace and some would never be caught doing a yarn over to save their life but is a very talented intarsia knitter instead. (That last one is obviously not me even though I have an MKAL in front of me that will probably teach me some intarsia tricks.) But, just because I don’t knit Fair Isle it doesn’t mean I don’t think it’s pretty and would love to wear it. Wouldn’t it then be a wonderful thing if someone knit me something in Fair Isle? Or knit me something they thought pretty and had my name on it?

A few weeks ago I saw a picture of a pair of wrist warmers that a friend had given another friend. They were beautiful wrist warmers and I suddenly got so jealous. I want to have that kind of wrist warmers too! Not only that but I want my friend to knit me wrist warmers. I can make myself wrist warmers any day of the week but I can not make myself a pair of wrist warmers from that friend. And that made me realize that knitting is not just the garment itself, or even warmth but a little piece of someone else that I can carry with me. I use knitting like that, I love the fact that Agnieszka is most often wearing things that I’ve made her (not only because she likes to have me with her (I’m not even sure she’s even thought of that) but because I’ve knit so much for her it’s hard for her to find an outfit that doesn’t have anything of my handknit to match it) and I bet it makes her think if me more often but most importantly, I know that I am close to her, that I, or a little piece of me, is with her and near her even when I personally am not in the same room or even in the same country. Or, just the fact that besides me on the dest at work is a yellow shawl that I made for Agnieszka and that she lend me last week because I needed yellow and this was the best yellow I knew. I know I’ve made that shawl but it was about three years ago and there has been a lot of knits under the bridges since, and now it’s hers and it being next to me means that a little piece of her is with me and I can’t tell you how much comfort that is.

My point is that just because I’m a knitter it doesn’t mean that I don’t like to have my friends with me and their work warming my shoulders or wrists or ears. They will have found patterns I would never have seen and they will do things differently from what I would have done and they will use technics that I have never tried and basically, it will never be the same to have my own shawl wrapped around my neck instead of the one made for me by my friend. So, I will knit for knitters and hope that they won’t hesitate to knit for me just because I’m a knitter too.

GLP update #7

It’s been a while since I talked about my Great Lace and showed you the progress. This lace is built of an edge, a body from stitches that is picked up from the edge, a triangle shape that starts in the middle of the body stitches and then emerges one stitch per row from the body into the triangle and then the whole shebang ends with Another edge along the top of the triangle.

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The body contains of 240-something rows and 225 of these rows are one big chart divided into three sheets of paper (because it couldn’t fit on one) with 75 rows on each sheet. Yesterday I finished the second sheet which means I only have about 75 rows left on this chart before I move to the next, 16-rows, chart and after that to the triangle itself.

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Even though I technically know that my cone is smaller (so sorry for crappy pictures but it is February after all) I can’t see it, not even when comparing it to pictures of it from this summer. Sure, it’s less square but I was sure it would be significantly smaller by now. I was also sure I would need a second cone but now I’m not so sure anymore. That might, on second thought, also be famous last words…