Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Doing My Part to Keep the WIP Alive

“Is the WIP blog post dead?” some are asking. Not here at Lots of Yarn, and I’ll tell you why. I’ve had several forced “rest periods” from knitting in the past four years (before and after three arm surgeries). I found my first knitting blog, WendyKnits through an article on blogging in the Washington Post. Wendy linked to other blogs, and they linked to other blogs, and I am embarrassed to tell you how many blogs are in my Bloglines right now.

I have learned so much, have been inspired, and have been moved to try knitting things I never had any idea existed, or had any idea I would want to knit. Some I’ve liked more than others. Lace has stuck. And I have an epic stash of sock yarn. Oh, and now I’m a Spinner. Down the rabbit hole.

Knit bloggers have made me laugh, sometimes when I’ve really needed it. And made me think. There are some keen analysts and really good writers out there. Some have shared such poignant episodes in their lives and the level of trust in their dear readers is reassuring to me that common decency still exists in increasingly rude times. There are caring, funny, smart, and wise (mostly) women who make an effort to put what they love out there, and it’s just amazing sometimes.

Bloggers have been my vicarious stitchers at times, and have made and fixed mistakes and shared them with us, and we’ve all had a chance to learn. Of course, celebrating the happy FO’s is fun too, but the WIP’s, and the lessons they teach, are what I love best. So whether you are a process or product knitter, or a hybrid of both, I hope you will find something useful here on occasion.

The Cleite Shawl is now through two repeats of Chart 2. I’ve been weighing the remaining handspun after each, and I’m figuring and calculating, hoping I’ll just make it through four full repeats. Of course I can bind off a few rows early, but I’m knitting faster, so I won’t run out.

Cleite Shawl chart 2 twice

The lace pattern is very straightforward and rhythmic once you get through a complete repeat. I keep forgetting to knit the few knit stitches on the WS since the dark brown yarn makes them less obvious, and have resorted to hanging markers on each which look silly, but keep me from going on auto-pilot.

Cleite Shawl chart 2 detail

The handspun is quite uneven in spots, but part of the beauty of lace is that it’s not a smooth solid fabric anyway, and pinned out the lace is still looking lovely.

If you are knitting this from the Wooly Wonka Exotic Fiber Club pattern, note that errata are posted HERE.

Husband Mitt One is done. You know what? It is hard to photograph your own hand. The Husband hand is out of town, so I’m working this out as I go based on some mitts I made him a couple or three years ago, and won’t weave in the bound off ends until he tries them on for length.

Husband Mitt One

As I mentioned the other day, I started with AnnyPurls’ adaptation of Hello Yarn’s Cable Twist sock, cast on 64 stitches, worked out a gusset, fiddled with the thumb, changed needle sizes to snug up the cuff and top, and there you have it. The yarn is 2-ply fingering weight spun from Wooly Wonka hand-dyed BFL. And I cannot say enough nice things about how wonderful the roving was to spin or knit with. Husband Mitt Two is already on the needles!