Sunday, September 28, 2008

Sometimes, The Dragon Wins

Most of us are familiar with this cartoon (or a variation thereof)--a contented and replete dragon resting against a tree, surrounded by inedible knightly bits. Clearly, the knight did not have a good questing day.

I feel for the poor knight. He invested a lot of time and energy tracking down the dragon, polishing armor, eating cold porridge, and making sure his white horse was spotless--only to end up as lunch.

Like the tragic knight, Harry spent a great deal of time, energy, and Colourmart cash/silk knitting the Bling shawl, only to cringe and scrabble away in horror when the thing was blocked out.

It's not a total failure, but attractive it is not. The only way Harry would show you a picture of it was if I draped it tastefully on a hanger...

... or applied Photoshop filters with a heavy hand. Below is the very first use I ever had for the spheroid and melty filters. Too bad I can't apply these filters to the actual shawl. I think the melty effect is rather charming.

Harry's off sulking now, Red Roxx earbuds firmly in place, tuned into Trance Radio. He can come out and snicker at my Triinu shawl. I ran out of yarn as I approached the edging. Of course, the new skein doesn't match. Perhaps now would be a good time to tune into Trance radio myself...

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Insanity and Other Current Knitting

Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.

Albert Einstein, (attributed)
US (German-born) physicist (1879 - 1955)
This behavior is exemplified by people who continually push elevator buttons in the hope of getting the elevator's undivided attention. Had you been in my kitchen a few weeks ago, you could have watched while I performed the knitting equivalent with the Blasted Triinu's Shawl.

The pattern calls for casting on 11 stitches. Which I did... over and over and over... because I couldn't get the first row to work out correctly. Turns out you need to cast on 12 stitches, but it took me an hour of Einsteinian insanity before I stopped and actually counted the required stitches for the first row. Jet lag. Um.

For some reason, the pattern doesn't gel for me--big leaves, small leaves, central leaves...

Without the help of this Yahoo group, I probably would have frogged the thing after ten rows. The Yahoo group also has information on ordering the pattern.

I am working it on #4 needles in Handmaiden Seasilk, mostly because I fell in love with the color, but also because I adore the way the stuff feels. My version will be quite a bit larger than the original, which was worked in a mystery laceweight.

In other news, I have finished all but the edging of the Bling shawl and decided I couldn't bear to work a knitted-on edging. I found an integrated edging in an old Burda book and I hope to be finished with it in a week or so. I want be done with this thing already.

And finally, I award a Platinum Star to Cashlana, a cashmere/merino sock yarn from Fleece Artist. This stuff has become my very favorite sock yarn--it is super-soft but still sproingy--an effortless knit. I am not wild about the color selection or the short color runs that result in Morse Code-esque socks, but the quality of the yarn is so fabulous that I can easily overlook (and overdye) this shortcoming.

A Pleasant Wake-Up Call

You know it's going to be a good day when the first email you read is a blog award. Today, GJabouri gave me this pretty ribbon:

Of course, there are rules attached to the award:

1. Post this award on your blog.
2. Add a link to the person who awarded you.
3. Nominate at least 4 other bloggers, and add their links as well.
4. leave a comment at the new recipients' blogs, so they can pass it on.

I subscribe to about 20 knitting blogs, but the ones I love most dearly are shown in the Blogger sidebar. All of those mentioned are hereby awarded this ribbon, but I want to mention a new one that you might not have discovered yet.

I've been reading
Knit Creations of a Curious Mind, by olgajazzy, for several years, but am flummoxed as to why I haven't dropped it into the sidebar until today. In addition to being an incredible designer, olgajazzy's entries are interesting, witty, and often eyepopping. Her free patterns are fabulous. Do pay her a visit, but wait until you have some time to graze through her posts.