Sunday, December 9, 2012

Emptying the Brain

I prevented my brain from exploding this morning. It was no mean feat. There was a lot of pressure in there. I should have worn goggles, but luckily, it wasn't as messy as I thought it would be.

Sometimes, ideas jump around in my head like a bunch of puppies on speed. This often happens when I'm dreaming of projects, even ones that I already have some sort of plan for. I obsess over every step in my head so that, when I actually come to do it, I have some idea of how it's going to work. This time, though, I had no plans, just yarn... these three skeins, in fact:


I'd seen a dress with these three colours together last summer, and the trio had been in my head ever since. These are three skeins of Berroco Ultra Alpaca that I purchased on our yarn trip last weekend. Altogether, there's about 645 yards there, enough for... for what?

I really have no sense of how much yarn I need to make a garment for myself right now. My body has changed so much since this weight loss thing started that all my standard estimates are out the window. Apparently, this could be enough to make me a sweater, or at least a short-sleeved top... I think...

So, since last weekend, I've been thinking about what I could do with these three skeins of yarn. Another shawl? A skirt? A shrug? Throw in the 50% wool/50% alpaca content, and that makes it even more complicated, since alpaca is heavy and tends to grow. Well then... now what?

This morning, I figured that the only way to stop the cycle of images in my head was to draw them out. Since I am by no means a designer, my drawings would be doodles at best, but maybe they could help me make sense of these ideas. For starters, simple colour-blocked stoles. The one on the right is my representation of an ombre-effect in the transition:


Then I found Stephen West's Flagstone, which is a shawl that looks something like this:


Then I thought to myself, That kind of looks like the back of a hoodie. Do I have enough for a hoodie?


And then I started thinking about colour-blocked tees. In a wool/alpaca blend? Maybe...


I've been reading the comments about this yarn in Ravelry, and the consensus seems to be to make a swatch, measure it, wash it, and measure again to see if it grows (as you should with all your swatches). So maybe I have to do that before I decide anything. I've got a few other things I need to swatch for, so they may as well all get in the bath together.

Regardless, it felt good to get out the pencil crayons and empty out my brain. It sounds weird, but there I feel relieved to get some of those ideas out of there. And while the journey to the finished object is by no means over, perhaps I've hit upon something that could help me get through a lot of other stuff that has been overloading my mind recently. One of the guys at work doodles constantly through lectures and meetings, and he's a fricking genius.

Whoa man, I could develop my geniusness with this... but not if I keep using words like that.

Back to the drawing board for now, but man, does it feel good.

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