Spring Cleaning #7

victoria-shawlProject #6: The Victoria Shawl from Victorian Lace Today

I’m embarrassed to say that I think this one languished only because I forgot about it. I pulled it out to as a trip project. On return, it got put away. Out of sight, out of mind.

I don’t remember the name nor the colorway of the yarn, but it is a 2-ply hand painted lace that I bought from Full Thread Ahead in Los Altos.

Decision: Back in the queue. It’s a good travel project. (Gee, where have I heard that from?) There are lots of short trips and cruise outs coming up this summer.

Station Break

Spring Cleaning will resume tomorrow. Yeah, it’s depressing how many more there are. I’ll keep going until I am either finished with cataloging them or I’m too embarrassed to list more.  Whichever comes first.

There has been other fiber activities around here, in addition to the spring cleaning.  I’ve been working away at 12 oz of pin drafted roving from Morro Fleece Works.  I bought this from Kristine via Carolina Homespun back in March. Kristine was clearing through her stash.

Although I have several pounds worth of Morro’s pin drafted fiber in the garage, I just couldn’t resist.  This was a luscious moorit merino with streaks of tussah carded into it.  The blend was a lot of fun to spin with long draw into a slightly slubby yarn.  I have 3 very full bobbins of singles.  I’ll be randomly plying from the bobbins into a 2-ply yarn.  Randomly breaking off a single and joining in from another bobbin.  Why? This will help even out the final yarn.

Amy told me that she is enjoying the Spring Cleaning series, but wasn’t sure that she’s ready to share with the world her stash of UFOs.  First off, I’m not calling these UFOs — just projects that have been neglected.  Semantics, I know.

In revisiting these, I realize that some of them are a lot of fun.  I don’t know why I ever stopped.  Something along the way made me put them on hold.  Revisiting gives me a chance to re-evaluate the situation and determine the path forward.  Or in the case of the Anarchist Sweater, abandoning it was the right path forward.  (Incidentally, Grace, the short pieces from each of the squares would actually be great for weaving.  A perfect project for Iris and her Cricket Loom.)

And the other reason for going through these is partially in response to “I’m bored. I want to cast on a new project” feeling.  It’s sort of like the kid standing with the refrigerator door open and saying “Mom! I’m hungry and there’s nothing to eat!” when the refrigerator is full of food.  There are lots of projects here that fit the bill for my need for lace, something warm to cuddle up to, something small and transportable.

Besides, I’m running out of knitting project bags.

Spring Cleaning #6

clapotisProject #5: This should look familiar — the ubiquitous Clapotis.

I had resisted when this was all the rage.  I had continued to resist even after seeing a few first hand.  It’s nice, but I just wasn’t interested.

However, once I saw Penny’s Clapotis, I fell in love.  The drape of the Koigu in this pattern is wonderful, and the subtle variation played well. I wanted one, 4 years after the fact.

But it sits unfinished. Why? It’s boring. I can’t believe how boring this project is.  Even the occasional drop lost its appeal after the nth one of these. On top of that, I lost track at one point and now I’m slightly off in the pattern.  It’s not visibly noticeable, but I know it’s there and it bugs me.  But not enough to rip back to find it. I just need to adjust it somewhere to get it back on track.

Decision: Back into the queue.  I’m about 60% finished, so a week or so of knitting should get this finished and off the needles.  Perhaps I can finish it in time for the 5th anniversary of the pattern.

Spring Cleaning #5

squirrel-mittenProject #4: Squirrel Mittens

I started these in the fall of 2007 and abandoned it on November 21, 2007.  How do I know the exact date? It was the date that I IMed with my sister about this project.  I had intended this to be mittens for Iris.

Obviously, it won’t fit her now.  She’s been growing like a weed.  Thankfully, Martin’s family is providing me with lots of little ones that I can give these to.  I just need to figure out what “year” to put on it.  My original intent was to put the Iris’ birth year on this, but I think I’ll just put the year that it is finished, so it can be passed between the cousins.  I’m hoping it will say 2009.  (At least I’ll have a chance to finish it in the correct century.)

The yarn is hand spun merino.  I believe at least the dark brown is from Nebo Rock, processed by Morro Bay.  I was aiming to replicate Koigu. I’ve mostly succeeded.  The yarn is a bit thicker, but, oh-boy, I think it is much softer and springy-er than Koigu. Yes, it’s that yummy.

Decision: In the queue after the shrug.  And give it to one of the Woolsey/McDonough kids, just in time for high summer.  But because they live in the Pacific Northwest, they may need it to watch the fireworks on the Fourth of July!

Project Updates:

  • Circular Shrug: I have 3 more panels left on the edging before I can start the sleeves.  The project is getting too large for dragging around, so it has been relegated to TV watching project. I think this will be done just in time for the cool summer evenings!
  • Anarchist Sweater: Grace has offered to take the project off my hands.

Faroese Styled Shawl



  • My own design: from the neck down; finished off with 3 st i-cord bound off/edging all the way around
  • Yarn: Noro Silk Garden Sock, 1+ skein each of White/Natural (S269, Lot A) and Reds (S84, Lot A)
  • Needles: 3.00 mm
  • Back Length: 15″

I had originally aimed for about 20″ depth, but I was so darned bored with this, that I opted to keep it short.  And it works.  At the arms, the shawl ends right at my elbows, which is perfect for wearing around the house — nothing to drag into whatever I’m working on.

Lessons learned?  My design was based on measurements right at the neck.  Instead, I should have allowed for the fact that shawls, like sweaters, generally sit about an inch or two (or three) off of the back of the neck.  So, the shoulder shaping is too far back, which compounded the problem of minor slippage.

In addition, I should have stopped the shoulder shaping about 1-2″ shorter.  As it is now, I have a bit of a David Byrne thing going on.

All in all, I’m happy with the results for a first attempt at a faroese shawl. I definitely would do this again. I don’t think it would have been quite so onerous if I didn’t have to drag 2 balls of yarn around all the time. As it was, I had limited mobility with this project.