and then life happened and somewhere between october and last month, i barely touched needles, nor yarn, nor even took a very deep breath.
but i've slowed things down a bit, am regaining my equilibrium and getting things back on track overall - including knitting.
so naturally, i got all excited about the clapotis once again, spread it again and am now in a small KAL. after a good deal of support, i finally wound up my silk mal. it was as soft as anticipated. dreamy soft. heavenly cloud soft and light as a happy thought. i cast it on and it was like knitting a tiny bit of heaven. it glided across my addis like skates on fresh ice. nirvana.
but then i realized that what appeared (on my monitor) to be a deep orangish-red was, in fact jack-o-lantern orange. and kinda bright. and - to me - kinda nauseating. i sought out my partners and they encouraged me properly - keep with it, i'm sure it'll grow on you,etc. several even commented they liked the colorway and would be willing to receive the shawl once completed. so, i kept at it. at one point, i noted there was alot of orange in my life - much of it by my choosing. so clearly i don't dislike orange per se. maybe it would all work out.
but also, the dreamy shiny yarn is a bit...sticky. the halo is part of why it's so super soft, but it sticks to itself. this is terrific if you're prone to dropping stitches, which i naturally am. stitches hold even if they're off the needles - in fact, they hold on as if for dear life. this is generally a good thing. but let's remember the pattern:
see those arrows? they are rows of dropped stitches that are dropped and then laddered all the way down. it is kind of what makes the clapotis a clapotis. it adds more drape and drama and is lovely. but with sticky yarn? pure, unadulterated unfun. with sticky yarn each individual stitch has to be unworked . there's no dropping fun when your yarn is holding on to each stitch for dear life. unh uh. nope.
so, what with the colorway that was causing me nausea and the painstaking unworking of each stitch in rows that were growing progressively longer... well, let's just say this shawl and i were fast becoming enemies locked in serious battle.
but let me reiterate: this pattern is hugely, widely popular. and that is because it is a great pattern. knitting on the bias is neat, i love the parralelogram shaping, the drape, the simple elegance of it - when others have done it. and this yarn? there are fan clubs dedicated to it for good reason. those good people at malabrigo are color geniuses generally and the yarn is soft, shiny, smooth and light. it is knitting beautifully colored air shot up with angel blessings and sweet baby smells.
and i was hating it.
so.... i decided to give it a little rest, lest i seriously harm it. but i couldn't shake the promise of the pattern.
and so i grabbed one of my acrylics. because hey, it's acrylic and thus not overly expensive. i've no fear of hurting it and if i do it serious harm, there's always a michaels or ac moore stocking plenty. and i love, love the color (autumn red). so i cast this baby on and determined i would work at least through one row dropping to see if it bugged me less when the stitches actually dropped. and it did. so i kept on. i also decided to twist the stitches on both the knit and purl sides to sharpen up the stitches around the dropped rows. i kind of loved it.
except it is heavy as heck and as it grows, my wrists are really taking a beating. and being heavier, this is not something i would be likely to use before fall. i would just be a sweat pool wearing this and i was so looking foward to a light, lovely summertime clapotis. finally, acrylic doesn't 'give' like wool - just not the same kind of springy-ness as my silky mal. i liked it well enough, but knew it wasn't going to be my dream clapotis. and the silky mal was stalking me. i wanted to love it. it was so soft. ever since i first saw the clapotis pattern, i knew i wanted to make it up with silky mal.
and so, yesterday was WWKIP day and boston pride. i headed into town with emma and janet and we had a fine, fine day! lovely people at the WWKIP. lots of good conversation and knitting and the sun came out to dance over the scrumptious yarns. and then walking along the pride parade. just enjoying the vibe and hooting along. and theeeeeeeeeennnnnnnn, a grand finale trip to windsor button! according to their website windsor button has the largest assortment of buttons and yarn in the boston area. i've wanted to go for ages and just never have. it was magical. and ummm, they carry silky mal. there's one colorway i've stalked on ravelry called indiecita. it looked gorgeous - on my monitor. but then, the viena i used on that first clap looked gorgeous on my monitor too and in person it was close to giving me dry heaves. so, it was with a little skepticism that i approached the indiecita. but guess what? beautiful sea colors - with greens and blues of various, perfectly harmonizing hues that shimmer and shine incandescently. it was... dreamy.
so yeah, thanks to emma and janet:
and now, it seems i have a wee clap problem. over the course of fifteen days, i've cast on not one... not two... but three clapoti.
but, this last one? oh yeah - this is the dream.