Tuesday, April 27, 2010

My fingertips are sore today though

The Barefoot Shepherdess made a really excellent little pincushion recently. It reminded me a little of tomato pincushions—I think it's partly the colours she chose and partly that I associate all pincushions with tomatoes. I dug out some brightly-coloured Kaffe Fassett fabrics I have, and made one for myself:

hexagon pincushion

The light is pretty gloomy today, but bright ungloomy colours are a good antidote. I love hexagons so much, and the result with these fabrics is very cheerful and a little ridiculous. I am happy with the way the circles on the fabric make the hexagons look slightly off-kilter; it is fitting because the circles are also slightly off-kilter. I am very slow at basting the corners around the little paper hexagons and also at sewing in general, so it took me around half an afternoon to put together.

It was a really excellent afternoon, though! I lounged around and assembled hexagons and watched Fringe and drank coffee. I am now all caught up on the television I have been shirking, and I have a pincushion. This is why vacations were invented.

Sunday, April 4, 2010


My excellent friend Mel is getting married in September, and is knitting herself a stole from a pattern in Knitted Lace of Estonia. I can't stand the idea of someone else having a new shawl and not me! So I dug up some llama lace yarn from a visit to Americo a couple of years ago, and set to work.

Llama stole

My favourite part is the tiny ripply garter stitch welt that divides the edging from the body.

This is the body pattern from the peacock scarf in the same book, attached to an edging from the little dictionary section at the end. It smooths out and develops a lovely halo after blocking, and also grows to about twice its previous size. However! I only have one 700m skein of this yarn, and it just isn't enough. Half the yarn knitted up into a piece that measures 27" from the points on the edging to the knitting in progress. Twice that length is just not long enough for me, and I don't want it to be any narrower.

I knitted a matching piece and will set both of them aside until the next time I visit Toronto and can get more yarn, in the same colour if they've got it and in something coordinating if they don't. (My action plan for dealing with different dye lots is to unknit a chunk of the finished work and reknit it alternating skeins, on both pieces: labour-intensive, but the best way to blend in a new dye lot.) My completion idea involves a central section in some other pattern growing out of one of these two sections and grafted to the other, maybe about two more feet of knitting, to make a stole that's a little over six feet long. I really like the Shetland stole format of two big matching border sections flanking a centre with a different pattern, and then a narrower edging all the way around—I want this stole to remind me of that, although the narrower edging will only be on the two short ends. I might pin out the selvedges into scallops, or maybe not.

In any case! I think having 2/3 of it knitted already will encourage me to finish it off when I have the opportunity, whatever that entails.