Thursday, August 7, 2014

What's on my needles (week 29)

Some reflections and anecdotes

Those of you who receive the blog posts per e-mail or view them on facebook  already  heard this story last week, but I feel compelled to share with the rest of you :)  By the way don't forget to "like" me on facebook here: Knit with Doris/ Discover your Inner Knitter

There is always knitting or how to find joy in an otherwise troubled world
Not to belittle the problems the world is facing, but peace starts with inner peace one person at a time...
A couple of weeks ago I was reminded about a little song my now 29 year old son made up when he was about four or five.  It went something like this:  "Don't worry when something goes wrong there is a truck,  when there is a fire, you get the fire truck, when you are sick there is an ambulance..."  This song went on and on seemingly endless.  I think he had a fascination with trucks ;)
I was thinking the same about knitting. When I get stressed and have to do something calming, I pick up my knitting needles.  Difficult projects don't allow my mind to wander, but force me to stay focused on the work in my hands and easier ones help me to find a rhythm and inner peace while letting my thoughts wander and look at things from different angles (just like my knitting).

How to make lemonade
We all know the saying when you get lemons make lemonade...
I had to do just that this week.  It all started with a rainy day which made me grab my raincoat when I rushed out the door leaving behind my fingerless mittens which were in the pockets, because -you know- who needs fingerless mitts in July?!  Upon my return I found that my son's cat had eaten a big chunk out of one mitten (the other one has still not re-surfaced).  What got to me the most was thinking of the time spent on making them, not so much the cost of yarn or even that they are my favorites.  When Gerry inquired how he can replace them, I answered in jest: "can you knit me a new pair?"  Well, he is taking me up on that and after two lessons (which he claims he enjoyed!) he is starting on a pair of simple fingerless mitts following my pattern "The simplest fingerless mitts you'll ever make".  So, now we are praising Pumpkin (the cat) for bringing us closer together.

knitting lesson #2 how to purrrrl

still wet from the bite Pumpkin took out

At the Knitting Garage

Lessons and Classes

Dale's Market Bag
So far this summer I have been very happy to meet many new faces as well as old acquaintances for private lessons and classes.  Making a cotton T-shirt, Spa Cloth, Sun Hat and Market bag among other things.  More and more knitters seem to come around to the thinking that knitting is not seasonal :) Here are a few projects done by several of our customers (Note to self:  Take more class pictures!)  If you have a picture of your finished project you started in a class with me, and want to have it published, please e-mail it to me (thank you!).

Anni's Hat
Toni's Pinwheel Flower Spa Cloth

I especially enjoy teaching those who are new to knitting.

Glacerie Shawl/ store sample

We decided to do the large size in the same yarn combination as suggested for the small size i.e. Sport weight yarn for the MC and Fingering weight yarn for CC1 and CC2.
A little tricky to set up the first scallop section with lace stitches on both RS rows and WS rows. But once you have your first section done it seems to get easier as you have your center stitches for reference.
There were a couple of new stitches for me such as cdd-p, but I am always happy to learn something new.
Now each section is just a repetition of the one prior and this project has become much less demanding.  This is a great pattern to use up any fingering weight yarn left over from prior projects for your contrasting colors as you only need 175 yards of CC2 and 75 yards of CC1 for the large size.  For the the small size you will need 190 yds DK or sport weight yarn for your MC and 150 yds fingering weight yarn for the CC.
I started on section #6 this week:

At Home

Matt's All-in-one
I have finished the pockets and am now knitting the hood for Matt's scarf.  When all the pieces are done they will still need to be sewn together :)

A gift from Heaven Shawl

Some general observations about the pattern:
The first few sections (Rain and Grass) seem to be written for the beginner lace knitter in mind with both written instructions as well as a chart for the grass section. Then it switches to having to follow a chart with some written guidance for the Ripple section. When it comes to the last two sections (Leaf and Petals) you are to follow the chart only. The written instructions only tell you when to switch yarns. This may be specifically difficult for the beginner lace knitter when it comes to knitting lace stitches on the wrong side row; not everyone may know how to read a chart or that you will have to read the wrong side rows from left to right….BUT if you are familiar with charts and know how to follow them, the end result will be a beautiful shawl :)

Here is the finished Rain section:

And the Grass section:

And the Ripples:

The Leaf section:

And I just started on the Petals; this is how it looks so far:

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