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23 August 2007 @ 20:01
Two steps forward, one step back...  

I've been trying hard to finish some of my many projects, and I was good, I did manage to get two done, but then I was sucked in by the lure of lace, and started a new project. But thankfully it was a quick knit, and that's finished too.

First to be finished was my second Forest Canopy shawl, this was really to use up the rest of the Piece of Beauty seasilk which I bought for the Montego Bay scarf, I had 70g left, and it seemed a shame to waste it. I started on Addi turbos, but a combination of the slippiness of the yarn and needles, and my general inability to control yarn overs on circs had me changing to straights quite quickly. I did two extra repeats from the pattern, it's still quite small, but it's just big enough to wrap round my shoulders and tie at the front. I love the pattern, it's easy to remember, and to see where you're at at any point on the row.



Mollie is impressed. At least I think she is.



The colours are a little washed out on this one, but it does show the stitch pattern off well.



Next to be attacked was the second Fleece Artist soft sock - rosealare bought me the kit for my birthday back in May, and I knitted one up straight away, but then second sock syndrome struck, and it languished in a bag with the yarn. Until just over a week ago, when I pulled it out and zapped off the other one in one day - to be fair, they are done on 5mm needles with just 34 stitches. Then I immediately put them on, despite the fact that it's supposed to be August.

 

I can see them getting a lot of wear - they're strictly for wearing in the house, they're far too thick to wear with shoes or boots unless they're about a size too big. I did amend the pattern somewhat - I tried with the recommended 26 stitches, but they were never going to go over my feet, and I have narrow feet, 34 is just right. Then I added 8 rows of rib at the top, and did my usual short row heel. The yarn is one strand of mohair and one of dk blue faced leicester held together, it's lovely and soft, and the colours still show up, especially where the colours on the two strands happen to coincide.



So..... I was being good, but then I decided that I needed something to go over my new dress. I thought of a cardigan, but a shawl sounded quicker and more fun (I have been well and truly bitten by the lace bug!) I'd spotted the Luna Moth shawl on someone's blog a while ago and really liked it, then I found lots more on Ravelry, so I decided to have a go. I bought four balls of Rowan 4 ply soft in just the right colour, and off I went. I started by rewriting all the written instructions to make them easier to follow, but there were still an awful lot of words, so I had another go at reading a chart, and finally managed to crack it. A magnetic cross stitch chart holder helped enormously, and eventually I realised that even though there were ten different pattern rows, they did come in two sections and different bits did line up, so I could spot any mistakes (there were only a couple, both missed yarn overs and easily put right, thankfully).



After six days knitting I had this - I just about managed with 12" straights, although it was a close run thing, and I did have to use a longer needle for the first row of the cast off, which adds two yarn overs for every ten stitches, to make sure that the cast off edge (the pointy bit) isn't too tight. So I cast off about 360 stitches, rinsed it and did the magic blocking thing, and turned it into this -



It just about fitted on the blocking boards, and whilst I was in the Early Learning Centre at lunchtime buying a present, I spotted that the boards had been reduced to £10 for four, so I bought another set.



I resisted unpinning it as soon as I got up this morning, but by the time I got home it was thoroughly dry, once again the tree gets to model first.



I love the swirliness of the pattern.



Mollie is once more perplexed by the sudden appearance of clothes in her tree.



I did three extra pattern repeats, up to just over 300 stitches before the cast off, and it measures about 32" x 64". I used 5mm needles.



A slightly dodgy self-photo...