Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Race to the finish

No, it's not that I was speed-knitting. I was racing the yarn to the end. When I finished the last bit of the edging on the star shawl last night at 10:45 (there was no way I could have stopped when I was that close to being finished!), this is how much yarn I had left.
Once I can see through a ball of yarn, it starts to feel like a nail-biter to me. It wasn't really; there was plenty left to finish the edging, but no way could I have squeaked another repeat in the body of the shawl out of this one. Of course, I knew that I had another skein of this yarn tucked away in case of emergencies, but it really would have made me cranky to break into a whole new skein of yarn just for a couple of yards (I'm petty that way), so I'm glad it worked out the way it did.

The girls and I got home a little while ago, after taking Younger Daughter to her Irish dance lessons, and stopping at Target on the way home to pick up costumes for both girls for their spring concert. I put the shawl in to soak while I made pizzas for dinner (mmm....), and once I was done, I got the girls started on homework and headed into the guest room to block that baby. Forty (back-breaking, knee-bruising; am I the only one who finds blocking to be a painful physical process?) minutes later, it was done.
(That corner is looking wonky, now that I see the picture; must go fix it...)

It blocked as a rather attenuated triangle, rather than an even-sided one, which I very much prefer in my triangular shawls, as it turns out (who knew?). Of course, as always, the edging just has me all a-tingle.
Scrumdiddlyumptious, no?
Love it.

So, to recap. This is another one of Anne's amazing patterns, the Star of Evening Triangle. I knitted it with Lanas Puras Melosa lace weight (100% merino), in the Fern Green colorway, on size 3 Addi Turbos. The yarn came from One Planet Yarn and Fiber; they were wonderful about getting it to me quickly, and making sure I had plenty (that's also where I got the yarn for Boing). I love working with people that friendly! And of course, as always, it's a blast to work with Anne, totally aside from how much I love her patterns; it just doesn't seem like someone could be that nice, but she really is.

I do have a new project on the needles, but I'll save that for another day. I'm still at the beginning stage, where I'm not feeling the pull of the over-the-hump, more-than-halfway-there, it's-all-downhill-from-here stage of knitting. I know I will, but in the meantime, I'm thinking that tonight may be a spinning night, as I've been wanting very much to finish the second half of the Rabbitworks roving; I'm thinking that the yarn might make a nice hat or a pair of mitts for Older Daughter for our cold-weather trip this summer (and yes, that is a teaser). I've been listening to book that is an old favorite on my iPod while driving and knitting recently, and have found that I can listen while I spin, too, which is very restful and soothing (the book? one of Bujold's from the Vorkosigan saga, called Memory), so that is something to look forward to, after a day spent grading, and with stacks more to go.

But first, I must get the girls to bed. You may imagine the theme music from Psycho here; I certainly do.


EGunn said...

It looks beautiful! I'm glad you made it without breaking into that new skein. The color is great, and the little points on the edging are really pretty. Well done!

Stell said...

beautiful, if I keep reading your blog I am going to have to knit me a shawl or two, i am a shawl virgin. Those directional microphones are fantastic and easy to use for older folk - I'm not entirely sure why hearing aids seem the preferred medical solution when most of the hard of hearing hate them so. And Daughters knitting - well done! You should both be proud.

Carrie K said...

Psycho indeed. Your poor girls.

The shawl is gorgeous! I love the edging. The body. The color. It's beautiful.

Kiti said...

Dear Knitting Linguist,

I have started to read your blog. I am the daughter of Willow from Willow's Cottage.

I have some questions about linguistics and academia. I would love to hear your thoughts and perspectives. Please let me know if and how I may contact you.


Marianne said...

Beautiful Star of Evening shawl!!! I bought the pattern the other day and I'm now into the yarn choice mode, I love this part :^)
Yes, blocking lace can be a bit painful but soooo worth it!

KnitNana said...

I do struggle with the blocking process as well, you're not alone! But it is a worthwhile "pain" - at least I tell myself that.


Laura said...

Star of Evening is beautiful. But then I knew it would be. :-) DH loves Bujold's Vorkosigan books.

Alwen said...

Sweet! I love the lace and the color. That's about the color of the leaves right now.

(And no more T-rex-iness to be seen. :) )

Gwen said...

Lovely shawl!

I always have help blocking. My son brings out his ambulance to carry the pins and tries to take over pin placement from me. Of course, I follow right behind him, fixing. It may not be any slower than doing it myself.

Rachael said...

So pretty!! I love this pattern, I may have to knit it...

I hate blocking as well, I always feel like an old lady when I stand up after leaning over for so long.

Willow said...

I hate that panicky feeling of not knowing if I have enough yarn to finish. Once I knitted a shawl and RAN OUT during the cast off row. Scarred for life, I haven't knitted another shawl since. Yours is so so beautiful that I'm thinking maybe I'll venture it again.

Anne said...

It's gorgeous! I love the edging, and the bit where the edging and the body of the shawl make contact. I'm almost moved to make a bad joke about Lacuna Matata, but fortunately I've gotten a grip on myself. I might have a shawl in my future too -- there are certainly plenty in my queue -- but I can feel the pull of the apres surf hoodie from IK Summer, a pattern that just screams D#1 to me.

=Tamar said...

What brand of microphone/earphones should I look for? I've wasted money on two versions so far, both of which were so cheaply made that they had built-in engine noise.

I love the green yarn (haven't made a shawl yet). But how can you be restful while listening to a Vorkosigan story?

twinsetellen said...

Blocking - sure is physically painful to block a big shawl for me. And kind of like childbirth - the product is all wrinkly at first but turns out to be beautifully worth it.

Your shawl sure is, at any rate.

Bea said...

The shawl is really beautiful.