Thursday, 1 May 2008

Yet another start

I think some of you might start to lose patience just about now. I think there might be some sharp intakes of breath or a muttered, 'Oh, for goodness' sake.'

I have started the Schaefer Anne in another pattern. I didn't rip the Argosy, because I wasn't entirely sure it was wrong and I wanted to keep the option of going back to it; I cut the yarn. It took me about 24 hours to work up the resolve to do that, and then I started on Evelyn Clark's Trellis Scarf from Interweave Knits, Spring 2006, which I've loved since I saw it here.

I'm enjoying it, not hating it, but I have to confess that the effort it costs me in concentration and unpicking doesn't really seem balanced by the result. It has taken me days to get this far. The bit where you knit into seven stitches three times, plus yarnovers, isn't bad at all, probably thanks to the Addi lace needles (5mm), but I am still having to check every stitch of the pattern. Yet again, I am faced with the fact that I am not one of nature's lace knitters.

I love how it looks, and at last I'm sure I've found a stitch pattern that works with the yarn, but am I going to struggle through all the other agonizing rows that are required to complete it? Maybe once I do another couple of repeats, I will begin to be able to read the pattern and I will speed up a bit.

Actually, in between struggling with this and progressing diligently with Chrissy, a small but persistent voice is suggesting that I start another Forest Canopy. That pattern seems to strike some deep chord with me and I catch sight of skeins that are calling to me. Will I get through the weekend without casting on? I doubt it. Spinning Fishwife is attempting to corrupt me further by drawing my attention to this, which is lovely too. It wouldn't suit the Anne, but I have some Jaggerspun Zephyr which is on my conscience.

Presumably not enough on my conscience, as I bought a skein of Malabrigo Lace this morning. The Grumpy Ewe is selling it from the UK, on eBay, and since Malabrigo can be so hard to get here I felt I had a moral obligation to support her. I do, don't I? She has the regular Merino and some Silky Merino too.

And yes, Mary Lou, I love Beauty and the Beast too. And Testament d'Orphée. Did anybody ever look so killingly chic as Maria Casares and Jean Marais?

Natalie asked me whether I've tried the Kool Aid yet. I'm waiting for some blue and green to arrive from the U.S. I've also found myself doing late night searches, combing eBay for a single pack of Arctic Apple Green or Ice Blue Raspberry, but it dawned on me belatedly that I can mix and dilute the colours so I'm not worrying about that any more.


duraknit said...

Helen, next time you need a specific color (oops, flavor! -- yes, I spell in American) of Kool-Aid, why not just post that request on your blog? I'm sure I'm not your only reader in the U.S., but even if I were I'd be happy to check the grocery store shelves for you.

Elizabeth D.

Anonymous said...

Another reader who could serve as your US buyer for Kool-Aid. Actually, I'm surprised that it's unavailable in the UK, as Britons seem to be even fonder of sweet treats than Americans are. Perhaps hot US summers favor consumption of brightly colored sugary drinks?
/s/ Gretchen

Anonymous said...

Not that I'm trying to stir trouble or anything, but that yarn looks like it would be very happy as Anne Hanson's Boing! (which I'm now knitting, and which I'll even be blogging today).

Knitting Linguist said...

You're right that the stitch pattern on this latest start looks really good with that yarn! If it makes you feel any better, I have the same trouble with new lace patterns; it takes me an unconscionable number of repeats to feel like I finally "get it". And I never do manage to memorize the patterns; I just get to where I only have to check in with them as opposed to staring at them... The Spring Thing shawl looks lovely, too -- maybe another cast-on in the immediate future :)

kathy in juneau said...

I'm glad I'm not the only one with lace decision issues. You were smart to cut, but not rip. (I ripped and when I looked at the image of the progress I had made, I must confess to having a little pang. Good to leave your options open.)

I, too, would be happy to be a Kool Aid buyer for you!

Heather said...

Canada has Kool-aid as well. And I, too, would be happy to buy it for you if we have the colour/flavour you are searching for.

Sea said...

Where do I find the Forest Canopy pattern please?
It looks interesting.
Have got a pack, (500g) of "fur" wool, varigated pastel shades, just wondering what to do with it. Any suggestions?
Found your blog via Jigzone

Raveller said...

I'm seconding Knitting Linguist's sentiments. Lace patterns usually do take a while to internalize after which they become much easier. It usually takes me about 8-10 inches of a lace scarf to get the hang of it. If I don't get it by then, it's probably too complex for me and I'll start over with an easier stitch.

For a while I was consciously trying to build up my abilities knitting more and more complex stitches. I spent a few years working on lace stitch patterns from the dictionaries, picking patterns with more and more rowa in them, or ones that don't keep the same number of stitches in each row.

Then I gave that up. I figure, what the heck, there is beauty in simplicity and I look for patterns with no more than a 16 row repeat max.

Glad to see you're having fun!