the Intrepid Fiberwizard

adventures in spinning, knitting, gardening and life

Friday, October 13, 2006

The Allure of Lace

Recently I have been contemplating lace. It's magic, the absolute airy, light, yet strong quality of lace. Rather like a spider web, it calls to me.
I figure that if this one, and this one and this one and this one and this one... can do it...... so can I. (at least that is the hope) - I know that many other blogging buddies out there have also heeded the call of lace..... many cheers. and wish me luck.

I begin. The search for a pattern was the first order of business. I hoped to begin that very day, so ordering a pattern was not a choice (you know how it is when you just have to begin something... the soul calls to you, and you press on).
I searched high and low through my gazillion books, and came across the lovely Folk Shawls. As I leafed through the book, I noticed that the rectangular stoles held more appeal to me. They held the possibility of me actually wearing the shawl.
After hours of enjoyable pondering, I selected the Bird's Nest Shawl. It is modeled after shawls made in the Himalaya's - this also appeals to me.
I dug through my stash, and found a yummy golden yarn that I had purchased years ago - definately a lace weight - 90% silk and 10% cashmere. It is a four ply yarn and down right teensy. yikes... yet I forged ahead. I knit a small 'sample' (as we are told that we should) and washed it, and set it aside. Bravely I decided that it must be alright, since the stitches looked fine, and so I cast on and began (naturally without waiting for the sample to dry)
Now here's the funny thing - our two black cats Miss Em and Lady Di; well, they have a 'thing' for goat fiber (any ol' goat will do). The second that I sat down to knit, Lady Di came racing over to my chair and edged her paws up closer and closer to the yarn. Who would have thought that her sense of smell was soooo keen as to awaken from a deep slumber all because of 10% cashmere!
Well - I knit on, and here's where I have gotten so far. four and a half hours, and I just began the actual lace portion of the shawl. sigh. I have discovered a few things..... I knit faster than I purl. It takes me about 15 minutes to purl an entire row of all these 346 stitches on size 6 needles. And it takes me 10 minutes to just knit the garter stitch rows. If my math is correct, that means that it will be about 38 hours of knitting that goes into this lovely garment. K asked if I had lost my mind - I assured him definately not :-)
Oh and what about the sample you might ask? Well, it seems that the cats found it, and have now hidden it somewhere special. So I am just going to assume that this yarn will bloom and be gorgeous. If not, we can always blame it on the kitties!

So what else am I knitting? Definately socks. Socktoberfest is going on you know -(how could you not know when it is everywhere!) Here's what is finished so far on that front. I promise that I am going to finish BOTH of these socks, and be wearing them before the end of the month. Thanks for all the good natured ribbing that I have received from all my blogging buddies, I am also going to begin knitting the mates to all my single socks.
The spec on this sock is that it is Sock Hop Yarn, colorway "Respect" - pattern from Sensational Knitted Socks. I am really enjoying this colorway.

Last but not least, I am still spinning. every day. Right now, the spinning is black - all black. It is for the Amish Shawl project that Diana and Shelly are hosting. I am almost half way through the pound of wool that I dyed and promised I'd finish for them It is Corriedale Pencil Roving, hand dyed without about a gazillion packets of dye to get it truly black.
On my wheel at the office is some more Sock Hop spinning.
If anyone out there knows of folks who would like to earn some money while spinning, we're still looking to add another 3-4 spinners for Sock Hop Yarn. The demand for this is high, and we need some more full time spinners (2-4 pounds / week) Any takers?

I am going to be taking a week or so off from posting, as I will be heading out to sunny Tampa Florida. My parents are moving into their new home, and I am going to help them unpack and get settled. There will definately be knitting on the plane and in the evenings. I'm really looking forward to getting to see them again and also their new home.
Have a joyous week all of you -


At October 13, 2006 at 5:42 PM, Blogger Krista McCurdy said...

Teyani, I would love to do some spinning for you. Do you need me to send you some samples or something? You can also see some of my yarn on my blog at Ah, I love spinning! One thing-- I have a pretty basic old single treadle Lendrum, which I love, but don't have a high speed, jumbo flyer thingy. Would I need that?

Anyways, your yarns/fibers are so incredibly gorgeous. And I could use some extra money!


At October 13, 2006 at 6:21 PM, Blogger loribird said...

The shawl looks good so far, and the sock is definitely lovely.
I might be able to spin for you - I'm sending an email :)

At October 13, 2006 at 7:08 PM, Blogger --Deb said...

Glad you're tackling some lace--it's such a rewarding thing to knit. Light and easy to carry, too! (grin)

Have a great vacation.

At October 13, 2006 at 7:25 PM, Blogger Cynthia said...

I love the colour of the shawl you are doing. When I was knitting my shawl (which felt repetitive and long) I just kind of broke it down into sections. The total reward about lace is when you have blocked it; it is like magic! I have my eye on a couple of others and I know I will do them. The sock is gorgeous and your black yarn is wonderful - god bless you Teyani.

At October 13, 2006 at 9:33 PM, Blogger Carole said...

I'm glad to hear that you took the plunge and started knitting a lace shawl! I hope you love it!
Have, ummm, fun with the parental unit moving thing.
I'm around if you need to talk or anything. Hugs.

At October 14, 2006 at 3:30 AM, Blogger Jane said...

Lovely shawl yarn! I hope you enjoy the knitting -- I do, as long as I can pay attention to what I'm doing (I can never have a conversation while I'm on a pattern row!).

At October 14, 2006 at 3:34 AM, Anonymous jessie said...

I'm still fascinated by the idea that you have silk/cashmere in your STASH. All I have is some old acrylic crap from Halloween costumes of old.

I'll be watching closely to see how this shawl grows....

At October 14, 2006 at 5:39 AM, Blogger margene said...

The shawl will be lovely and so woth the hours you put into it. As I always's the process!
We must love that process or we wouldn't knit, eh?
The Amish shawl project might be ending before its begun. Check Dianna's blog.

At October 14, 2006 at 5:51 AM, Anonymous Kelly said...

It looks like your off to a great start with the shawl. I love the color! Can't wait to see how it progresses.

Have a safe trip!

At October 14, 2006 at 6:39 AM, Blogger amanda said...

You CAN do it! And it will be so rewarding when all is said, done and blocked. I look forward to watching your progress.

Enjoy yourself in Florida. I still think you're a saint for actually volunteering to help your folks move. You shall be handsomely rewarded -- of this I am sure. You've got my number if you need a break and feel like chatting :o)

At October 14, 2006 at 8:34 AM, Anonymous Leah said...

Hee hee, my first thought when I saw your Soctoberfest socks was "but will it be a pair"?

Good for you on tackliing the lace. It will quickly become an obsession I predict!

Have fun in Tampa. I live in the Clearwater/Largo area for 6 years and it's beautiful there, especially this time of year.

At October 14, 2006 at 9:02 AM, Anonymous Beck in FL said...

Have fun in Tampa. I can't believe anyone would move to FL these days after the "H season" we've had recently but I hope they love it here. I'll wave as your plane goes overhead girl!

Love the lace. You can do it! I look forward to seeing it as you travel closer and closer to the end of your project!

At October 15, 2006 at 6:52 AM, Anonymous kmkat said...

That lace thing -- sometimes it just grabs one by the throat and refuses to let go. I've knit one lacy thing (see my 9/17/06 blog entry) which wasn't even real lace. Maybe someday I'll try again. That day would come a lot sooner if I had the gorgeous golden silk/cashmere you are using.

At October 15, 2006 at 8:03 AM, Blogger jackie said...

I totally understand the lace obsession. I have the pattern, I have the yarn, I have the needles. Now all that I need are the gumption and the time!
Good luck with the move! I hope your parents enjoy their new home.

At October 15, 2006 at 4:26 PM, Blogger Chris said...

Have a great time in Tampa!! And good luck with your shawl knitting. And also for the heads up re: possible feline interest if I pull out some cashmere to knit...

At October 16, 2006 at 9:42 AM, Blogger Stacey said...

Wow - you have been busy, busy!!!!!


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