Wednesday, May 31, 2006
I got my IK on Friday night at Borders. I was immediately entranced by the beautiousness of this particular shawl.
I had just the yarn - laceweight that I dyed at my local spinning guild with indigo last weekend
I also had some brand spanking new 3.75mm Bryspun circs that I'd bought from Webs for my Log Cabin before I'd realised that I was using 3mm needles on that project. I was absolutely faithful to my Log Cabin for 5 whole weeks - and still not quite 1/3 done with (it's very insistant that it must become a queen size bedspread). I've never tried the Bryspuns before. I'm not entirely sold on them, but then again I haven't started on the fancy part yet. They seem to slow down my purling.
Resistance was futile. I rationalised that I really needed a better take along project than the scrappy Log Cabin which literally had me schlepping garbage bags full of yarn everywhere. I cast on Saturday, and spent literally all day knitting. And lo and behold Icarus arising: This picture was taken fairly early Sunday morning. I was able to knit a fair amount on Sunday and Monday as well.
I've decided that I really really want to try to extend the fancy section. I think I have it sussed out. I will share more details as I get closer to it. But basically it involves doing a shorter version of Chart 2, and a shorter version of Chart 3 (truncating the pattern repeats) before I start knitting Charts 2 and 3 for real. Clear as mud? Sorry, I'm still trying to get it to gel in my head as well!
Hi, I'm starting the lace!!!!!!! Yep I moved on to chart 2.
I'll take some photos of the lace when I get something to see. To get this photo I had to use two circular needles. Even then it is a bit smashed. If I knit this up again I think maybe a different yarn. I still have how many more stitches to add????????? Will they all fit? I know they will but it will be a bit tight.
Back to knitting.
I don't have a picture for this post but the shawl is coming along slow but sure. I have learned the hard way that I can't knit lace during an exciting movie or when I am tired. I think I have tinked about half of what I have knitted. It goes something like this, "knit four rows, tink two". Maybe I just suck at lace.
But I'm enjoying myself and that's the important thing I guess. Keep up the good work, everyone. Soon we'll get to the more interesting charts.
Tuesday, May 30, 2006
I don't usually use them. But since I had already frogged the start of Icarus twice, I figured I better cover myself. So dental floss lifelines it was. I've only gotten the first of the five repeats done, and today I had worked about four more rows while sitting in the library with my boys.
And then it happened. I went to pull my knitting out of the bag at our next stop, the park, and I snagged a stitch. And pulled a snag about 8 inches long out, still attached, but with little puckered stitches on either side. I tried to work the snag back in slowly and patiently, but who am I kidding? Slow and patient aren't on my list of attributes.
Luckily the snag was past my most recent lifeline. So I happily frogged four rows! Putting it back on the needles wasn't super fun, but way more fun than trying to unwork that snag. Yay for lifelines!
Edit: oh yeah, I'm on the 3rd repeat after ripping out twice!
Sunday, May 28, 2006
Just finished the third repeat of Chart 1, plus the first row of repeat 4. 251 stitches across now.
I do think I should start another project, though, to stop feeling like this is the project that will never end. Anyone else in that boat?
I'll stop whining now.
P.S. I'm not actually sucking at the lace, though :)
I know the shawl looks like not so much but that is the beauty of lace.
I do have one question, it said repeat the first chart 5 times BUT when I count the "lines" in my shawl vs. the finished shawl, it seems like I need to do an extra repeat. Am I just bad counting????
Saturday, May 27, 2006
Friday, May 26, 2006
Another first-shawl knitter...
This is my Icarus, now just starting the third repeat of Chart 1 (those are lifelines marking each repeat). I'm using 100% laceweight "baby fleece" alpaca from Peru, though I bought it (cheap!) in Moscow. It's divinely soft, and I'm so glad to finally have a good pattern to use it on (though to be honest I was first hoping to use an alpaca/silk blend in a darker red, also purchased on the cheap in Moscow, but it turned out I only had 600 meters of that, sob). My #3 circs are Addis, which are too slippery, but I can't justify buying bamboo circs right now, much as I'd love to. I'd give anything, too, for some very small, plain stitch markers with nothing hanging off them. I'm using coil-less mini safety pins now, but they're driving me nuts. I think I'll go to a jewelry-making store to find some tiny metal rings.
Other than the slippery needles and the stitch markers, this pattern seems a breeze so far. It's easy to memorize this first part at least, so it's been requiring much less attention and angst on my part than I expected (and than was demanded by the much smaller but less obvious lace patterns I've attempted so far). So far, knock wood, no mistakes. This is probably because for the first time in my life I'm using lifelines -- Murphy's law. Although actually it turns out I like them -- I like marking my accomplishment every time a finish a repeat, plus I can tell at a glance how many I've done. So far I've worked on the Icarus while watching a movie, and while going through the tedious process of backing up all my data from my laptop, wiping the harddrive, and re-installing everything (a whole day of sitting and waiting while the little blue bar moved from left to right on the screen...perfect knitting opportunity!)
Someone asked about changing from one skein to another: this will be a major problem for me, as my yarn comes only in 100-meter skeins!! I just did the first change, and I did it by spit-felting the two ends together. It seems to work well, and the join doesn't show (though let's see what happens when I hold it up in sunlight tomorrow).
I'm in full agreement with "froggy_dear" about the healing power of alpaca: my semester ended a couple weeks ago, but regularly fondling this yarn has been a major part of my recovery since then! It feels like butter. It's a good thing I'll likely be working on this shawl all summer...I know I'll need the fiber-therapy!
At first I thought, oh sheesh, miles of stockinette, but now that I've started, I've realized that it's perfect for me to get used to the feel of the laceweight and recognizing my mistakes. I had to fix a multitude of missed yarnovers yesterday and am not completely sure I've fixed them to my satisfaction. But I have kind of weird knitting dysmorphia, in which I tend to fixate/obsess on minor imperfections, and if I put the damn thing away for a few days, when I come back it looks all better.
yarn is Zephyr wool silk in Mahogany, needles are size 3 Boye needlemaster circs. Loving the pointy ends, not loving the non-addi-smooth join.
Also, loving the yarn. After only 2 square inches of fabric, I had to hold it in my hand and pet it, and make everyone else in the household do so as well.
Knitting gives the alpaca a purpose.
I have one more week left in the school year, and it's that time where everything that needs to be done comes crashing together and makes one's head explode. Tonight I was working on a paper, a paper I'm not entirely committed to, a paper which has a thesis I feel ambivalent about. So it was hard. I got most of the way through it and took a break.
A knitting break.
And I worked on Icarus a little more. A row and a half.
And it was wonderful. The softness of the alpaca and silk blend, the movement of the bamboo needles working together to make a very complicated and beautiful knot.
After that I managed to wade through the rest of my footnotes and concluding the paper.
(forgive me if I wax a little poetic. I just did several pages of less than inspired history argument)
If you would like me to change your sidebar name or bloglink, please let me know. Also, given the mountain of work I have in the next seven days, I may be slower responding to KALsters wishing to join up. Some of you have already experienced my slowness. But just one more week, then there's a long glorious summer light at the end of the tunnel.
Happy knitting all.
Thursday, May 25, 2006
Here's a little Icarus progress, held up to the light because the pics I took trying to spread it out on the floor turned out awful! It's a deep plum from Misti Alpaca, and I *love* it. However, it has become very humid here over the last few days, and the alpaca just felt sticky in my hands last night. That's probably a good thing, though, because I have a cotton log cabin baby blanket to finish and Icarus was keeping my attention away from it!
I originally was going to knit Icarus in this yarn:
that I bought at Stitches East a couple of years ago from some Russian woman. I had bought it for the Forest Path Stole, but the yarddage was short, and even though the Russian woman assured me that it would work out fine, I was too nervous to cast on. But, I don't know - I didn't really see myself as a peach butterfly. I wanted to be a lilac butterfly.
So, I put away the peachy laceweight yarn for another day, and cast on in Lilac Zephyr -and I am now all set for both this knit-a-long, and the Amazing Lace. I'm about 3 repeats into the first chart, and I'm find it, well, a bit boring - this is the caterpillar part. I can't wait to get to the next chart!
Hope everyone's knitting is going well!
Wednesday, May 24, 2006
Hi, I'm Elizabeth from CT, and my yarn of choice is the dark purple suri alpaca from the Alpaca Company. So far I've gazed at it lovingly, taken pictures of it posed with the flowers, and contemplated winding it. If all goes according to plan, I'll start knitting this weekend.
I think I'm going to do a lifeline so this doesn't happen again. This is my first project of this type. How many rows should I do before I move the lifeline? 5, 10, 20? I don't want to be too obsessive.
Tuesday, May 23, 2006
I'm Kate from Norway. I just had to join this KAL. First time I saw this shawl I was addicted. I'm using Pichenette from Plassard, 80% kid mohair and 20% polyamid, and needles 4(european), and the colour is purple.
It's really exciting to see all the different yarn and I do really look forward to see all the shawls finished.
I have just started, so I will post a picture later on this week, but if you want to see the colour, just visit my blog.
Until next time, take care and knit a lot.
Hi, my name is Val
I've already had to frog 65 rows of this pattern. It's easier the second time around! (Even though I don't reccomend it)
Alpaca With a Twist Fino Pearl Black
70% Baby Alpaca/ 30% Silk
875yrds Size 3 needles
It's a really fun pattern! It's my first time reading a chart and using lace weight yarn. I'm loving it.
You should be seeing a photo of my shawl. It didn't work. Sorry about that. What can I say I'm a knitter not a computer person can't ya tell.
More knitting less grumbling. I started the 5th repeat. Icarus works up nice. If you click on Michelle I posted about it on my blog, there you can see the photo I wanted to put here. Maybe next time I'll be able to show you my work. Happy knitting.
Hi Everyone! My name is Kim and like Jennifer I chose the Jaggerspun 50% merino and 50% silk. This is the finest yarn I have ever knit with and I am having a little trouble getting used to it. I may need a little guidance from the more experienced lace knitter among you. But it's fun so far. I love the softness of the piece.
Saturday, May 20, 2006
Okay, now that I have the purple prose out of the way, here's my dilemma: I have a thing about the number 9. I want there to be 9 columns of yarn overs on my Icarus. There are 8 (my younger son's favorite number) in the pattern. Do I have enough yarn? I ran out of the first ball four rows shy of the last full repeat of rows 19-42. I suppose I could figure it out mathematically, but where's the fun in that?! ;) I'm using Knitpicks Alpaca Cloud, which has 440 yards per ball, so I have 880 total yards. What do y'all think?
In answer to previous comments:
Miriam wrote that straight needles hurt her wrists. I find myself getting more used to them. With the laceweight, I have it all scrunched down to the tips of the needles. So far, so good. :)
And Miriam and Eva both posted their Alpaca Cloud wrangling tips. Thank you! I've gotten more used to it and haven't been pulling off as much at a time. And I can add in one more tip: it doesn't seem to respond either to swearing or begging.
And Sarah, truer words were never spoken. I also am amazed I have killed neither myself nor anyone else with the straight needles. Yet.
So...Carol in NoVa, when do we get to see your pretty forest green Icarus? Hmmmmmmm? :)
Well, I'm off to try to enable some more
Friday, May 19, 2006
Well, I'm off to go put the button on my blog!
Thursday, May 18, 2006
I made a button for this KAL. You can find it in the sidebar. Please right click and save the image to your computer instead of hotlinking. Just in case you weren't already doing that. :) Show it off on your website and be the envy of all your friends.
If anyone else would like to make a button, feel free! I don't see any problem in a multi-button KAL.
Wednesday, May 17, 2006
I received my IK this past weekend and was immediately in love with Icarus. (Lisa, if you are reading this, now is the time to avert your eyes.) So, of course, I went right to the stash and dug up some Knitpicks Alpaca Cloud in Sunlight.
Okay, so it's not a heavenly blue, but it was there and I was there, and there was no way I was going to wait to start! It doesn't really look much like sunlight to me, but it is a very pretty soft yellowy tan, so when I finally got over the name not fitting the color, I was very happy to have it. Two skeins. Perfect. I wound it into balls and started. Yikes. The first half of my progress was difficult until I got used to the tangles. Whew.
I don't know if all of the Alpaca Cloud is like this, but mine twists back on itself really badly and ties itself in knots. Gaaah! (I can hear Lisa saying that you get what you pay for; but, but but...it was already in my stash and I promise I've learned a lesson! I was saving your alpaca lace for another project. Honest!)
I started it on bamboo dpns and the bamboo was pretty nice with the alpaca! So, having no bamboo circs, I decided to knit it on straights. I've never used straight needles on lace before and I haven't used them for, um, years. They have a really different balance. A little difficult to get used to after using circs for so long. At any rate, here's my progress with the twisty twisty yarn. And yes, that *is* purple carpet. Hee.
Don't you love how lace looks like a shriveled piece of crap until it's blocked? It makes me want to knit faster so I can see how it will look. :) I've just finished the 4th repeat. I'm really wishing I'd used Kidsilk Haze in Heavenly. Maybe I'll do a second one...
Hi, I'm Jennifer and I'm here too. Here's the yarn I'm planning on using for my shawl (unless I change my mind and dye some). This is Jaggerspun in 50% silk/50% merino. It's nice to work with and I think the right weight for this pattern. I plan to cast on tonight. Who doesn't love a pattern where you only have to cast on 5!
Anyway, hi, I'm Kristi!
I finished Miriam's Seraphim shawl recently and knew right away that Icarus would be a nice progression. An easy first half or so that would give me a chance to adjust to lace weight yarn. So I waited with baited breath for the arrival of my summer IK. I had the yarn - Alapaca with a Twist's Fino (70/30 alpaca/silk) in Twilight (1002 if I remember correctly) that I gotten for my birthday last month.
When it arrived I didn't have US3 needles! A friend lent me US4s and talked me into knitting on those saying that I'm a tight knitter, but I'm undecided. I'm usually on gauge-wise and my friend almost always has to go down 1 or 2 sizes because she knits so loosely.
I've been mulling it over since Saturday night when I started it whether to continue or not... I'm not sure if I'm just not used to laceweight and how it looks unblocked or if I need to find money in my budget to purchase US3s... If that is the case it may have to wait until June. I think I'll probably run a life line and steam block it at this stage and see what I think before I knit any farther. I just haven't had time this week because I'm knitting like a mad woman for a baby shower for twins that will take place next Wednesday. It was a last minute thing for a woman in my water aerobics class.
I do love how this (and Seraphim) can be knit in front of the TV. Other lace shawls that I have started have languished due to the inability to either visit with DH or watch TV/movies with him. And, to those that don't know how to knit, these shawls are still very impressive!
Well I started on my icarus and I'm a bit worried.
Number one, I seem to have already screwed up. A few times. Well, not bad screw ups, but I seem to have twisted some stitches in the stockinette portion and they are screaming at me! And I am not so good at the dropping back to un-twist.
But my real worry is the boredom factor. I'm afraid making these rows is gonna put me to sleep. Of course I guess it's nice to be able to knit lace while watching Lost.
Oh and yeah. Hi! I'm Corrina (rincaro). My icarus is being worked on size 3 crystal palace needles in misti alpaca. Color #8105 which is listed as Periwinkle Blue. It's actually a very pale blue with hints of silver and lilac. But it's pretty. Reminds me of angel wings.
I'm through the setup and two repeats of the last half of chart one--which seems like a lot, but I'm noticing the rows are getting longer! I think the next three repeats will take much more time.
I usually don't knit this fast, but my classes just finished a week ago, and I am enjoying the extra knitting time. Hopefully (for my wallet at least) I will find a job soon, and then the knitting will slow again.
I've made it to row 27 of chart 1 with only a slight mishap in stitch number (turned out I had just skipped a row, not forgotten to do a few YOs...). I'm really enjoying the knitting so far and am quite enthralled with how soft the yarn is. Immensely pettable.
Anyway, I'm looking forward to seeing everyone's progress!
Tuesday, May 16, 2006
This is froggy_dear, your friendly hostess here. A couple things that I would like to say:
- I am so excited about this KAL. It's lovely to see all of you knitters knitting along with me. :)
-This is my first time coordinating a KAL and, really, my first time fussing around with Blogger. So if you have any suggestions or constructive criticism, I welcome it.
-I had the brilliant idea to start this KAL a couple of weeks before the end of the school year, so I am currently entrenched in schoolwork... just a little. I think I've kept up with those of you who've contacted me about joining. If you've emailed me, you should have recieved an invite and see your name in the sidebar. If I've missed you, please try again and forgive me. :)
I think that's all on the business end of things.
On the knitting front, I'm only at row 30. The first time through. This isn't helped by that pesky schoolwork and my tendency to be a multi-project knitter. I'm using white Alpaca With A Twist Fino - and I love it. It's so soft and lovely, but I am a sucker for alpaca.
First, this was ripped out.
Lorna's Lace's Heaven, the shawl pattern on the band. I lost interest and lost count and this lovely yarn was lonely in the bottom of the bag next to the couch. Too horrible a fate for this loveliness.
Right now, it looks like this:
I forget the name of the color, but the top picture is reasonably close to accurate. Because of the mohair, I'm knitting on much larger needles, but I think it should work given that there is more yardage in the hank than called for in the pattern (though I may need to re-assess as I get closer to the fancy part on the edge.)
I'm excited to see everyone's progress!
Monday, May 15, 2006
My name is Sarah. I live in Arizona where there is not much of a need for knitted sweaters BUT shawls, now those you can use.
Here is the beginning of my Icarus in Misti Alpaca lace weight yarn.
She is destined to my Mom in Minnesota for Christmas.
The pattern is going along swimmingly, at least it was until my little boy (age 3.5) decided to pull the needle out of about 25ish stitches. However, I was able to get her back on track.
I am loving this pattern. Now that I "get" the body pattern, I should be able to knit it without a lot of concentration.
BTW, I am addicted to lace. I finally mastered lace on lace weight yarn so I feel a bit lost when I don't have lace on the needles in some form.
Looking forward to everyone's progress!
Sunday, May 14, 2006
I have high hopes for this one, though :) I'll be using the same yarn I was using for Eunny's stole, which is a watery greeny-bluey mix (laceweight wool from Woolgatherers) that I got from my SP several months ago. It's so pretty that I KNOW it'll look lovely... once I get it going.
So hello, and I'm glad to be here.
P.S. If anyone hasn't seen this before, I found a triangular shawl percentage calculator at Rose-Kim Knits (in the sidebar -- it's an Excel file). If you know how to make it appear in a little bar down the side of your blog, you're one step ahead of me, but it's a start :)
Thursday, May 11, 2006
Tuesday, May 09, 2006
The pattern can be found in the summer issue of Interweave Knits.
There is no specified start time and no specifed end time for this knitalong. It's more of just a place where we can hang out and show off what we're doing and get the opinions of others.
If you would like to join this KAL, please send an email including your email address, your blog address, and your name (or how you want to be identified on the webpage) to froggy_dear at hotmail dot com.