Saturday, November 14, 2015

Neon Races, Frosty Shawls

Whoa, another two weeks flew past. What the what? Are we nearly in the middle of November again? Huh?

I'm beginning to think that this time of year has a weird hex on it for me. Perhaps it is the time change: suddenly, I've been plunged into darkness, and therefore, I feel sleepy as soon as I get home after work, and therefore, I feel like I'm walking in a dreamland. Time seems to fly past.

But dreamland or not, I have still been busy. Last weekend, I ran a 10k in Vancouver for the inaugural Great Climate Race, support of solar projects in British Columbia. It was a good run: I could have fuelled better, and I could have paced better, and a guy running in a hot dog costume was faster than me, but it was a beautiful run on a dry day with a very good crowd for a good cause. I can't complain. I felt privileged to be there:


My friend took this shot of me at the finish line. The neon makes me faster:


And the week before that, one of my friends (the same one that took the photo above) asked me if I might be able to repair a hole in a sweater for her. She wasn't worried about matching the pattern: she just didn't want a cold elbow anymore. I'd never done it before, and it was a bit daunting:


But with a bit of thought, I think I came up with pretty good solution. Not bad, eh?


And the other night, I finally finished my Moonlight Sonata shawl. I am actually in awe of it. I was not prepared for how beautiful this thing would be. I think it looks like the delicate frost that you see on your windows on a cold, bright, winter's day:



In a rare moment of forethought (or paranoia), I actually decided to bind off early for this shawl. If I'd actually thought about it a bit longer, I could have tracked how much yarn I was using for each repeat, observing the ratio of growth per repeat, and then extrapolated how many more repeats I could have worked before I ran out of yarn...


But what actually happened was that I freaked out and bailed early.

Turns out, I probably could have done at least one more repeat before I running out. When I finished the final stitch, I sighed and thought it would be too small to wear. Before blocking, as is the case with all lace projects, it looked like a crumpled heap of used handkerchief. I still wasn't sure about it after it was all stretched out and pinned and drying on the blocking boards. But then, after I took it off the boards, I stood there, staring at it in silence. Oh yes...





It was difficult to photograph the colours in the yarn. There are subtle tones of lavender and grey throughout. I was a little afraid they would create weird stripes, but they just seem to add depth to its ethereal nature:




And, as a bonus, I most likely have enough to make a pair of cafe mitts. I lost one of mine recently, and it's made me a bit tetchy for another pair... but we won't talk about that just now...

My next project is one that I've been working on in my brain for a while: Bristol Ivy's Svalbard. I'm not keen on the way the front is designed - the swingy front cardigan is just not flattering on me. It seemed like an easy calculation at the time, but there are a lot of clever things going on in this pattern, so I eventually had to sit down and plot it out on paper. I was feeling quite clever about it...


... except that I woke up at 4:00am this morning with the realization that this yellow yarn is just not right for this pattern. So, this afternoon, I wound a ball of Cascade 220 in colourway 2412 Rose, which is a dusky pinky plum colour, and I'm about to knit a swatch to test the gauge. I think will work much better. I didn't think my colour instinct would wake me up in the middle of the night, but there you go.

So, that's two weeks in a nutshell for you. I hope the next week doesn't fly by like that again. I'd sort of like to enjoy it, because it's my birthday on Tuesday, and it's true what they say: the older you get, the faster time flies. It'd be nice to slow down enough to at least enjoy a mouthful of birthday cake.

I've just looked out the window, and it's gone dark again. Sigh. Wake me up in spring, would you?

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