Wednesday, July 09, 2008

And It's Done!

I'm so excited! It's done. All finsihed! And I like it.

What you ask? Why, the shawl, of course! The thing I've been working on for all these days. Actually I started knitting it about June 16 or 17 (it seems like so long ago), and I finished it on Monday night. I had only one more section to do on the border, but it was late on Sunday, and this section needed some concentration and planning, so I left it for Monday. Then I washed it, darned in the two ends I had (ran out yarn with one ball), and thought about blocking it.

The problem is that I don't have space in my place. It's very very crowded right now. I dont have enough space on the carpet (can't even SEE the carpet!) to stretch out a shawl. And where are all my pins anyway?

So I thought I would so it at work. I have lots of space there! Several of my people are away, so their offices are vacant, with plenty of floor space. I could lay down a sheet, pin it out, and by morning it would be dry, and I'd pick it up before anyone would see it. Except for the cleaning people. Maybe they will leave it alone.

I found a couple boxes of push-pins in the office, and tried to stick them into the carpeting. No good. The carpet is pretty thin, and the pins don't hold a thing. Okay, this won't work.

I then notice the dividers we use between desks. The one between me and the girl next door is very nice: tall and wide, and empty! But I don't want to use her side. My side has lots of posters and papers tacked to it... oh, that can come down.

So I find a clear spot and start to pin it up.. I suddenly realize this is not going to work either. The space is far too small!! Okay, so I then turn to the long wall, and start pinning it to that. And it works much better.

The funny part is that as I pin one section, a pin on the other side suddenly pings! and is flying across the room! I had all these sharp pins flying in all directions. I'd hear a pop, and there goes another one!

I wasn't sure what size I was going to get with this shawl. As I knit, I kept asking myself if it is large enough. I did put in one more round of repeats for one pattern; I wasn't sure if I should repeat the next one as well. And maybe I should put in a wider border?

But I was able to stretch that thing a great deal! I was quite amazed. I got almost 80 inches across the top, tip to tip. Not too bad. And probably about 34 inches for the middle point. It was quite easy to get it fairly square and balanced on both sides, and then I left it.

I was thinking I would go back later in the evening to take it down, but I may have to answer lots of questions about why I was there so late at night. I would go in early on Wednesday.

I was a bit late in the morning, but still early enough. As I get to the building, I realize I forgot my security pass! I can't even get into the building without it. Okay, turn around and go back home to get it. As if I needed this TODAY of all days.

I finally get to work; it's still there. The girl next door says she saw my shawl; someone had come around early in the morning looking for me (they know I don't start that early) and saw it, so of course they all had to look. They were impressed.

I took a few pics, in the light I had available, and then took it down before my supervisor would see it as well. She might not see things the same way I did.

So here is a pic of my shawl as it was tacked to the wall. I will get some pics of someone wearing it later on. But I just was so excited to show you all that I will post whatever I have.

And it's another good day.

Saturday, July 05, 2008

There is knitting!

Yes, during this miserable month, I have been knitting.

You may recall that I had been working on a shawl for our family auction later this fall. I couldn't find the right design that I wanted to knit! It had to look good, simple enough to wear, and yet to show off the yarn and my skills. Anything I looked at was either too simple, or didn't seem appropriate for the yarn.

I eventually found a design that I liked. It is a triangular shawl, from the neck down. I thought that I could make a few adjustments to make it larger or smaller, or to add a few designs, if needed.

I started knitting this in the middle of June. Somewhere I had a photo of it starting out, but with all the other complications I've had, I seem to have misplaced a number of my pictures! But I will include one that shows some of the knitting of the border. Yes, I am now doing the border, and have almost completed it. It looks a bit small at this point, although I know that it will stretch a lot when I block it. I think it will be a good size. The design is not complicated (but most lace is very simple to do) but does look good, I think. I expect I should have it finished and blocked sometime next week. I have to find a floor somewhere that I can use for the blocking!

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Happy Birthday!

Happy Birthday, Canada! At 141 years, you're still a youngster, as far as countries go. And you're looking pretty good.

I can't believe it's 141 already! I remember the Centennial quite well, and it wasn't that long ago. Was it? It surely wasn't 41 years ago -- where did those years go? And I'm hardly even 41 myself-- how is that possible?!!

There is knitting! I finally started on the shawl about 2 weeks ago. It took me a very long time to find exactly what I wanted to make with the yarn I spun way back at the beginning of this year. I looked at so many patterns. I wanted a rectangular stole, with an interesting pattern to view and to knit. I thought I'd like to put in some beads either in the fringe or on the borders.

It all changed. I finally settled on a triangular shawl, knit from the neck down, in a fairly simple lace pattern. It does look good, I think, so far. I'm about to start on the border, but have been thinking of re-working the design of it. I don't know if the shawl will be long enough! I always have this problem -- why didn't I work out the math at the beginning so I would know for sure? That would be too simple!

There has been no knitting this weekend. I was rather busy, and it had to be put on hold. There is still time. I was on my feet for most of the weekend, the final being 32 hours straight. When I finally was able to sit down, I wasn't feeling too well -- oddly. But there was more to do, and I was able to lay down later in the day. I wasn't able to get to sleep right away, but eventually slept a little, and then a little more. Most fortunate, Tuesday was a holiday, and I didn't have to go to work. I was able to get some urgently needed rest. I did sleep late (which was such a pleasure!) and did precious little all day. I didn't do any knitting! I did some spinning though... that was mindless enough for today. I had a nap.

I had a few things to do today, but found a few aches and pains, which is to be expected. But the oddest was that it hurt to stand up! The bottom of my feet hurt... that has never happened before. I checked to see if I had any blisters; none yet, but they may have been starting to form, if I was on the feet for much longer. As it was, I stayed off my feet for most of the day, doing little, listening to some radio, checking emails, chatting with some friends, and generally taking it easy. It was a good day!

Pics will be forthcoming soon. I somehow have lost my card reader, and can't get the photos out of my camera! Technology! The border shouldn't take much longer now that I have a bit more time.

Best Wishes Canada, and many happy years to come!