Monday, July 18, 2011

Only one project on the needles

Last time, I think I said I'd talk a little about Damask, which I've recently started. I think I got it on the needles before I finished the Kristi socks, but I was also working on the Monkeybread scarf, so I didn't give it much attention. But Monkeybread is finished (more about that in a bit), so I've been making all kinds of progress on Damask.

It seems lots of people are making these little triangular shawlettes lately, and I had kind of been poo-pooing the whole idea, as I don't really consider myself a shawlette kind of girl. I'm just not big on accessorizing. But when I was in Atlanta this spring, Oliviaknits told me all about how she's made about a billion of these and how they're just great for throwing over your shoulders when it's a little chilly, but not quite cold enough for a sweater. She also told me about how they're good for getting a little warmth around your neck & chest if you're wearing a v-neck top. That planted the seed for this project.

You see, a couple years ago, I bought some incredibly soft sport-weight alpaca yarn at the Thistledown Shop while I was on vacation at my family's lake cottage. It was 650 yards of lovely charcoal grey 3-ply yarn. So soft & squishy I just couldn't help myself. At the time, I had no idea what I would make with it, I just knew that it had to be mine. It took me until a few weeks ago to make up my mind.

The project is going well - having done an Estonian lace scarf last year, I already have some experience with the dreaded nupps that can be tricky to complete. The chart repeats are pretty easily memorized (although the designer used non-standard symbols on them) and the wrong-side rows go quickly. I've just begun the fourth chart and it's already beginning to take on its triangular shape. Had I used a smoother yarn, the patterning might be a little more distinct, but I think, in the end, I'm going to like the absence of crispness I'm getting from this yarn.

In other news, the Monkeybread scarf is done, which means I have now completed all my projects for this year's State Fair. I completed the knitting on the scarf on Friday got it washed and on the blocking wires on Saturday evening. It came out beautifully - the cables are now lying flat and there's a nice rhythm to them that's harder to see on the hat. Both items together make a gorgeous set, which I'm sure my mother will love. She'll love them even more if they earn a ribbon at the Fair! (Last year I placed second in this category, so this year I'd really love a first!)

Well, that's all I have tonight. I leave for Sock Summit in a week, but I hope to get in a post or two before I head out of town. Until next time, then.

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