Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Before the after...

What you see here, is the "before" photo of my Bias Before & After Scarf.    I know it does not look like much now, but, as I understand it, that is the nature of the beast.    We are promised that once this baby has been washed, blocked & steamed, it will be a thing of beauty.

On the one hand, I look at it in its curly, uneven state and have my doubts.  On the other, the pattern comes to us from Churchmouse Yarns & Teas, one of my absolute favorite sources for lovely yarns & reliable patterns.  I choose to trust.

So far I have bought & downloaded all of my Churchmouse patterns directly from their website, but have since realized that I can get them from Ravelry (here), which would leave a copy in my Ravelry library.  In future I may go that way.

As expected, this pattern is clearly written, easy to follow and well laid out.   The original Bias Before & After Scarf ($5) calls for  Classic Elite Silky Alpaca Lace yarn.  However, there is an addendum (here) that gives the necessary information to knit the scarf with a single skein of Louet's Euroflax Sport Weight Linen yarn.   I had two single skeins (pale green & pink) in my stash, and the intended recipients live here in FL, so I went with the linen/addendum version.   

From cast-on to bind-off took me a week.   While I did work on it every day, it was in my purse so only got my attention when I was out & about.  The knitting was so wonderfully mindless that I was able to work  while riding in the car, talking to friends and even at the movies (Hope Springs, it was okay).    The process of adding the beads at either end, however, was more than a bit fiddly and required my full attention to get the job done.  

I began the pink scarf the same day I finished the green one and given how fast they knit up, may wait until they are both done to block them.  

Wednesday, August 8, 2012


Every so often, a pattern takes the knitting world by storm.   The Wingspan shawl is one of those.  Usually, I try to stay away from the rage of the moment and I did this time too.   Well, at least at first I did.    However, once I saw the Wingspan that Stephanie Pearl-McPhee made, I was hooked.   Searching through my stash, I found this yarn in my hand-spun/hand-dyed bin.  Unfortunately, it was not in a bag, and had no tag, so I have no idea what or whose it is.   I think it may be a cotton/wool blend.   I do know that it is sport to DK weight, a wonderful color-way, and a joy to knit with.

The pattern is really well written, at no point did I wonder what the designer (Maylin Tan) meant.   The finished shawl shows off its unique construction, while making less obvious just how fast and easy it was to make.  I have already cast on another deeper one to knit on the beach and I will be adding it to our church's list of recommended patterns for prayer/friendship shawls.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Second Time's a Charm...

These are the pictures that Hubby and I took on Saturday morning.   This is the shawl that I started last year in Stefanie Japel's Design Your Own Shawl (DYOS) class.    After sitting unfinished in a basket for a while, I finally finished it earlier this year.   Due to a perceived lack of space, I did a less than stellar job of blocking it.   However, earlier this week, when it came time to wet and block my finished Wingspan (those pictures to come later this week), I decided to re-blocked, my DYOS.    I like it so much better now.   I blocked off our dining room (didn't think of that before) and was able to block & dry both shawls, dog free, with room to spare.  I even used a measuring tape to make sure the points were even.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Hands Across the Sand

This is what we did today.   Hubby and I got up early to go the beach to take photos of a recently finished shawl.   As soon as we got home, I woke up T2 so that we could head right back to the beach and participate in Hands Across The Sand (Hubby had work to do).    This is a movement best described on their website thus:

Hands Across the Sand is a movement made of people of all walks of life and crosses political affiliations and the borders of the world. This movement is not about politics — it is about the protection of our coastal economies, oceans, marine wildlife and fisheries.  The accidents that continue to happen in offshore oil drilling are a threat to all of the above.  Expanding offshore oil drilling is not the answer; embracing Clean Energy is.

This is our third event.   We got involved the summer after the Gulf oil spill.    Florida's beaches are this states glory and we need to take care of them.   The idea that off-shore drilling (or on-shore drilling for that matter), can be anything but destructive, is just silly.   Some people think it is worth the price.   We do not.