Here’s the Noro Serpentine. We’ve been having rain, so I can only offer very unglamorous, blocking-in-the-garage shots. My photographer (Melissa) would be glad to point out the the blocking mats in all the *&@# different colors don’t help either.

A full length shot—
Nice wavy shawl

And a detail shot—
Nice wavy shawl

See the eyelet rows with the blocking wires running through them? Before blocking, these were the wavy rows and the center section was more or less straight. The blocking turned it into an entirely different shawl.

I loved, loved, loved knitting this shawl and look forward to making at least one more in a more traditional lace or fingering weight yarn—but didn’t the Noro come out nicely? It reminds me of a very meandering stream with pebbles shining beneath the water and the brightness varying as the sun filters through the trees.

Tuesday Mewsday: Nap Time

I admire cats for many reasons, but I particularly envy them their ability to sleep. As the quotation goes—I have never known one to suffer from insomnia. They sleep atop things; they sleep upside down; they sleep wedged into the most uncomfortable of corners.

Here’s Maggie who was having a delightful belly-up snooze the other day.
Maggie catches some zzzz's
(You can tell she’s really relaxed because normally she doesn’t allow the paparazzi to get this near her.)

And here’s Bob, drinking up a bit of our winter sun.
Bob catches some zzzz's

I’m not sure there’s a more complete happiness to be had anywhere in the world.

Because It’s All about the Shawls

Yes, yes, there are the details—like earning a living, putting food on the table, covering one’s nakedness, and preparing for retirement—but they matter only insofar as they make shawl knitting possible. That’s how I see it.

The hectic-crazy at work has been amping up over the last month, so I’ve responded by digging through my stash of pattern print-outs and choosing projects that are pleasing, but not overly demanding. Anything with a provisional cast-on or that requires multi-directional knitting has put put aside. I’ve been in desperate need of some smooth sailing.

First up is Vortex, pattern by Kristina McCurley, knit in Poems Sock.
You are getting sleepy
Watching the wider spiral of eyelets spread out across the tighter rings of color kept the knitting interesting.

Vortex is for my niece, Miss Sparkles, whom I will be visiting in just a few weeks. I imagine it draped across her legs as she stretches out for some evening reading.

And I’d been meaning to knit a Clothilde for ages.
Bright green
I don’t remember exactly what this yarn is, but I do remember that it’s half wool and half cashmere and that I picked it up from Elann for a ridiculously cheap price. It’s a single, so it’s bound to pill—but the softness is unbelievable.

Because Clothilde is a simple pattern, I didn’t recgonize it as a must-knit right away. But as I followed last year’s 10 Shawls in 2010 group on Ravelry, over and over again the Clothildes jumped out at me. The crisp lines and lacy edge look great in a huge variety of yarns—just check out the 600+ projects posted on Ravelry if you want proof.

Last of all is Holden in some yummy Alpaca Sox. I’m planning to give this one to my sister, Miss Sparkles’ mother.
Red and gray
This pattern has a feature I love: effective use of occasional purl rows to make the design pop.

You can’t tell in this photo, but I used Holden as an opportunity to play around with shawl shaping, adding to the number of increases as I went along. Writing shawl patterns is high on my agenda once I get through this quarter (I’m not teaching spring quarter—huzzah!) and I want to come up with some shapes beyond the basic triangle and rectangle.