I finished my Pi R Square shawl from Elizabeth Zimmerman. I will have to say that I LOVE this piece - it works well with all my funky deconstructed clothes!! Mr.sunneshine on the other hand HATES it..... So this shawl is fairly easy to make - lots of garter stitch with a few yarn overs for shaping - easy!! Till I got to the lace border - and its not like this is my first lace piece or the first border that I have attached, but boy did I learn a lot about lace knitting, borders and blocking. In the end , it is totally wearable, you probably wouldn't notice the mistakes if you weren't looking for them and once it is re-blocked, they will be even less noticable. After this project, mr.sunneshine has volunteered to help me make a blocking board -- yeah!! It would really make my life so much easier then pinning things to a towel on the dining room rug and guessing to what is even - and with this project, raiding the bookshelf to keep the rug from curling and bunching. So quickly here is what I learned, so maybe you can take my advice instead of having your own frustration... one - always start blocking pieces from the center, easier to keep them even, two - alpaca is not as hearty as cashmere, watch the stitches - I broke a stitch in the lace border from pulling too hard, three - always use a "lifeline" (thread a piece of waste yarn through all the stitches of the first row) when knitting lace patterns with lots of yo's in a row - then if you make a mistake you can easily pull out to the lifeline without having to frog the whole thing, four - corners are not as easy as they look, you do have to make adjustments in the lace pattern and short rows do not always work for those adjustments and finally - I knew this but was in disbelief - my shawl gained 9 inches in length and 9 inches in width during blocking. While I finished it and it looked tiny - it grew to just the right size!!
Since this was done, I rewarded myself by starting three new projects - dark charcoal knucks - didn't picture them, since almost everyone has made a pair. There is my pretty creme aran blanket from Philosophers Wool. I was so intimidated by this project a year ago - and now it is moving right along. This however is definatly not a chatting, watching tv or having a glass of wine while knitting project -- the chart reads in both directions, so I have to pay attention!! It is made of that yummy organic wool that smells so good to me - that will motivate me to find time for it....
Finally there is my new Halcyon yarn that arrived friday and the new beginnings of my Hush Hush dress. I once again have to compliment Halcyon for their customer service. There was a hand written note with the yarn again appologising - while it doesn't correct the other dress, they did all they could!! So I am starting the dress again, with the added bonus of hindsight and when I pulled the first one off the needles, I tried it on, and it fit really well! So onward and upward!!
Have a great week!