Friday, June 30, 2006

The newbie would just like to wish everyone a happy July 4th! Everyone shawl's are stunning, and I continue to plod along on my Icaraus. I did have to visit the frog pond and have started over with a different yarn. I think it was meant to be because this one is really going much smoother. I am into the second repeat of rows 19-42 on Chart 1 and all is well. Happy 4th to all!
Sue J.

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Why are we all so stymied by the counting in this pattern? Take many bright, creative people; a beautiful pattern; and notice the recurrence of counting-challenged posts.

What makes this lace pattern so tricky? I have some theories, but let's hear yours!

Pretty Blog Update: bought myself a digital camera today from a wonderful young FEMALE sales person at Best Buy, name of Tori. She was smart, knowledgable, not too pushy, and a real joy to have help us.

Being a retail manager and knowing that most news from customers is bad news, I sought out a manager to tell about our pleasant experience. I complimented Tori and let him know how nice it is to see women working there. I also told him (and Tori) that the women at BestBuy should be paid more than the men, since they are in demand and there are so many fewer of them. Wouldn't that be nice: women in a boys' club who actually make more money?
okay, i finished the first 42 rows of chart one. Now I am onto the repeats. So I am knitting along, I get to the repeat bar and repeat, well there more stitches than repeats. Does this mean that I need to repeat it twice until I get to the middle sts? I am so confused.


Exercise or knit? Which would you rather do?

I continue to reconstruct Icarus. As you will recall, I ripped back to the beginning of the last repeat of Chart 1 on Tuesday. I've done 5 rows since then. I simply can't do this and watch tv. From now on I will listen to podcasts and audio book while I knit on this shawl. I know you experienced lace knitters are saying to yourselves, "What is her problem? Chart 1 is the easy part!" but I keep making mistakes. Complacent inattentiveness, I guess. Still when all is said and done, I'm enjoying the hell out of this and I know it's going to look great when it's done.

I am so obsessed with finishing this that I even resent the half-hour that I spend at Curves and wondered if I could knit while I work out. All the time I'm there I'm thinking that I could be knitting. Hell, I'd rather be doing just about anything else. I find Curves to be so mind-numbingly boring that I can barely force myself to go. I know it's only one half-hour three times a week and I know it's good for me but does it have to be so dull? The ladies there try to perk it up by having games and puzzles to do while you exercise and that has helped tremendously but those of us with short attention spans are still counting the seconds 'til we finish that last repeat. Or maybe I'm the only one who feel that way.

Anyway, tonight is a baseball game and if it doesn't rain (over 8" since Sunday here) we'll be going. That means a few hours of uninterrupted knitting. The stadium flooded Monday with water waist deep in the dugouts and a couple feet in the locker rooms and the offices, but they played last night after a late start. There's no stopping the boys of summer.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

I'm almost done with Chart 1, and there's a mistake that's calling my name. Somehow (it may be because I am visiting my parents in Pittsburgh, trying to watch the World Cup (go cute soccer boys -even though I've been happily married for 26 years), and talking to my mom, I got offtrack on one of the sides and moved one stitch over from what should have been the center stitch. I've now ripped it back to row 21 or so three times. The thing is that I was going great guns until I started talking to the man next to me at the airport about digital cameras and his all-men barbershop choral group. (I'm a sucker for hearing about eccentric passions.) Then I started miscounting, and it was downhill from there. At this point, I can't bear the thought of ripping it back again, so I just keep knitting, telling myself that the mistake will be unnoticeable. Once I satisfy my craving to own a digital camera so that I can have a Pretty Blog, I will post a picture and let you all register your votes. I am relying on the advice once given to me by a weaving teacher: it is appropriate to include an error in a work of art to remind oneself that perfection is not necessarily equivalent to beauty. Does that work for you? One other point: my yarn is beautiful: bamboo handdyed with Procion dyes, and I'm very proud of it.

A setback but I'm not going to let it beat me...

I crowed about my progress on Icarus a little too soon. I found a mistake and since I am obsessive compulsive I couldn't let it go. I ripped back to the lifeline I put in before I started Chart 2, removed the lifeline, and went back to the lifeline before the beginning of the last repeat of Chart 1. It hurt sooooo bad, but I had to do it. It couldn't be fixed (by me anyway) by just dropping back. I spent 2 hours trying. So I ripped!

This destroyed any chance I had of finishing this before July 7th. Oh well, I want to do it right so that I can truely be proud of my accomplishment and not see the mistakes every time I look at it.

We had a barn fire Monday night. See my blog for the story and photos.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Sleeping Beauty

DD fell asleep as I was working on Chart 1 repeat 2 row 24 or so. I put the knitting down, she rolled to "look" at it and looked soooo cute I had to take a picture of them. She's now rolled some more and has her hand on it like its her lovey now. She already stole my Irish Diamond Shawl, I'm expecting her or her sibling to be to steal this one. ;)

Blogger won't let me add the picture normally, so I've added it manually.
Its been so hot here that I haven't been able to do much more than yell at the kids to play safe. Neither of them wanted to wear clothes today at all. We finally were able to convince DS to put clothes on after 6pm. I sat most of the day with my feet up and worked on Iky, occasionally having the kids cuddle with me in between running rampant around the house and backyard. I'm amazed I've gotten as far as I have in between dealing with them, the heat, the pregnancy and chores. Then again, don't look too hard in my house. ;)
If its cooler tomorrow, I'll do some chores. Honest. :D
Okay what the hell did I do?

I am on chart one, and I got up to row 19 where you start with the boxes of repeats. For some reason, I do not have enough stitches. Am I supposed to increase? If I am, how?

I am lost, thank god I did a lifeline.


Monday, June 26, 2006

Yikes! Math problems!

I've been using the shawl percentage calculator. Um, ok. I've done three full repeats of rows 19-42, plus 9 more rows. So I've worked 123 rows of the shawl. The calculator tells me that I've done 26.9% of the shawl. Depressing, but whatever.

So I went to my handy dandy scale and weighed my yarn. I've used 34g of the 50g ball of Misti Alpaca laceweight. That's 34% of my yarn, and I've only done 26.9% of my shawl. That's a big fat, ugly problem. Especially considering that I ordered it online and the chances of getting the same dyelot are probably like nil.

Even if I take out a full repeat of the five, I'm still cutting it way too close. I'll have used 34% of my yarn and only done 33% of my shawl. What if I find a knot? What if I have some other sort of colossal screw up? I am one unhappy camper!

ETA: Shoot I miscounted the rows. I'm even worse off than I thought.
Here she is under much better light and bocked, I have to say I LOVED this pattern and am going to have to make one for myself! Posted by Picasa
Give me joy, everyone! I finished chart 1. I had my doubts that I would ever reach this point. I have my lifeline in and am ready to start chart 2. No pictures 'cause it's cloudy here and, let's face it, if you've seen one half-finished unblocked Icarus you've seen them all. I was intrigued by Sarah's post about adding beads and Miriam's comment that she had beads in the original design. I would love to try that but I just don't think I have the time. I would like to finish this by July 7th when the Mystery Stole KAL begins.

It took me nearly two months of solid knitting to finish this shawl and I gotta tell you, I am about sick of it!

Here she is pre-blocked.
Close up of the feathers in the preblocked stage.
Taking a bath.
Pinned out in my bedroom.
A full length finished shot.
Here is a close up of the edging with beads. Just don't make the same mistake I did and forget to put a bead on the center back. I added it during the cast off row because there was no way I was tinking back 2.5 rows!
Now I have to figure out a new project to knit until my Sock Swap yarn arrives. Oh well, I have to finish sewing bags today so...that should take up most of my knitting time.

Sunday, June 25, 2006

I'm done, and she's blocking, i'll take more pictures tomorrow when she's dry. The darker on the edge is the yarn that i spun. I got the wrong color roving, but it's all good, I think it looks neat! Posted by Picasa
Adding Beads to Icarus

I added beads to the edging of my Icarus in row 3 of the edging.

The way I added the beads was with a crochet hook. I used small beads I got at a local craft store, nothing fancy, just black irridescent beads.

I added them to the stitch JUST AFTER THE 4 YO'S.

On the stitch just after the 4 yo's, I used a small crochet hook to transfer the bead to the next stitch by placing the bead on a crochet hook, pulling the stitch through the bead and then slipping it back onto the left needle. I then continued knitting by the ssk as directed in the pattern.

I hope that makes sense. If you have questions, you can email me at sbridger3 at cox dot net!
I just want to introduce myself. I'm new to this KAL, but have been in others and love them. I started Icarus yesterday using Misti Baby Alpaca in a shade lf lavender. Can't wait to get going on it today. I've looked at the other posts, and they are just gorgeous. Thanks so much for having me.
Sue Johnson
Time for one of those new to lace knitting moments.

I finally have been able to go past row 25, without frogging the whole thing. Which is making me very happy now.

But what I wanted to admit to, was that I was having trouble with the pattern. I could not figure out how you knitted in the points of the feathers. I read the pattern and reread it. I thought I would have to do a join on somewhere. Then I saw all the beautiful shawls everyone is turning out, and it hit me. The feather points come at the end, and I am knitting from the top...

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Icarus in Flight

(cross posted to my own

I finished my Icarus a while ago, but it's only lately that I've managed to get pictures wearing it. The weather has been crappy - thunderstorms, rainshowers, and wind. But it finally got nice enough - and I worked up the nerve - to take it off the back of the sofa and wear it.

so huge!

It's gigantic! Something like a 76" wingspan and 36" down the spine, it pretty much dwarfs me. Because I'm going to end up sitting on the tail if I wear it normally:I'd end up sitting on the tail

I think it will end up much better wrapped:

less girly, more medieval

so girly

And then of course the matador drape, lest I am trapped in a field with a mad bull:

the matador shot

But seriously - how do you all wear your shawls? This is my first laceweight shawl. I really have little experience wearing something this delicate. I really had to convince myself that it is not a sofa decoration, it's an actual garment intended to be worn by a human.

I also made a horrifying discovery this morning: my DH had draped slightly damp laundry over the back of the sofa and also over top of the shawl. I did not freak out, since god forbid I discourage any laundry activities. But where am I going to put Icarus, when I'm not wearing her? Help!

Friday, June 23, 2006

Sally has finished her Icarus. And it's beautiful!

Check it out!
Hello Ladies and Gents, Boys and Girls!

So I have started Icarus like 5 times and I keep having to frog it. I was doing it out of Crystal Palace Kid Merino, but for some reason I just can't get past the 5th row in the first chart. I never have a hard time following a pattern and I for some reason can't see my stitches. Anyone else kid this with a yarn like this? I'm going crazy. So in my craze, I ordered 2550 yards of merino lace weight wool in shocking pink to make it out of. Maybe the a yarn without the fuzz and fur of Kid Merino will help.

I swear I was about to kill myself a few times there. I should get my yarn in a few days and start knitting again.
Reason to love Lifelines

I got interrupted last night and put Iky away into its bag. Bad enough that I can't find my stitch markers I bought to help me mark where I am and all, but this morning, I pulled Iky out of the bag and just about cried.

Both needles were pulled out of at least 10 stitches. Not each, but at least 10 stitches.

I'm so glad I put in that lifeline yesterday. If I hadn't, I would have had ladders down to the cast on row.

I'm going to keep on putting lifelines in every repeat of the first pattern. I can rescue what happened because I had put in my first one yesterday. With two kids under 4 here, lifelines are a must!

Only 2 more rows of chart 4 and the final 4 rows!

I am so excited.

I think I am going to try and put beads on the points to make it extra special for my Mom.

I hope to have photos this weekend.

Hope everyone's shawls are humming along.
Greetings! I am so glad to have found this KAL. Icarus is my second lace project. Right now I am finishing up a traditional Pi Shawl and am having some difficulties with the border. Casting on for this shawl has been a way to avoid those moments of frustration I keep having with the edging.

I am using Lacy Lamb, a very thin little yarn that is somewhere between exciting and BONKERS to work with. Has anyone here used it before?

Although it took several rows before I learned it, the pattern is so extremely regular during Chart A that I have it down and can knit at it relatively mindlessly. It tells you what to do next. (Does that make sense to anyone else?) Looks like I'll have to pay a bit more attention when I get to the feathers.

You can learn more about me, my knitting family (my 7yo son who is knitting a scarf out of yarn he spun himself and my partner David who is knitting his first sock), and all of our current projects on my blog.

The Purloined Letter
Quoth the Maven, "Knit Some More!"

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Lifelines at the ready!

Yup. Went to the dollar store today and got some dental floss. I'm on Chart 1 row 17 and haven't touched it since last night because I wanted to be able to put the lifeline in before starting the second set of increases.

I figured out my mistake too. So I was happily knitting it yesterday. As soon as I do row 19, in will go my lifeline and Ill work away at the rest of Chart 1 repeat 1.

Pictures later.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Another restart! Somehow the stitch marker became part of a stitch, and I didn't notice until several rows later. Now that I understand the pattern, the knitting will go faster. Frogging isn't all bad - there were a number of little errors that had been bothering me - this time I can follow the pattern correctly.
Icarus Math

I stopped at lunchtime and did some calculations. I have finished 147 rows and have 315 stitches on my needles. This works out right because I finished row 27 of the fifth repeat.

42 + 9 + (4 x 24) = 147.

  • 42 for chart 1
  • 4 x 24 for the four repeats of rows 19-42 of chart 1
  • 9 rows completed on the fifth repeat of chart 1

I have 31 rows to go (15 more rows for the fifth repeat and then rows 19-34) on chart 1 which will add 60 more stitiches (15 x 4 = 60) bringing my total stitches to 375 which is what the pattern calls for.

Yee Haw! I love it when a plan comes together!

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Recast and a question...

Third time's the charm, right?

I got myself a set of Clover bamboo in 3.25mm in order to knit this for at least the first while. Although Addis are kewl, they are a little too slippery at the moment. Maybe when I have to switch to longer needles, I'll switch back. The Clovers are definately a better choice and I'm enjoying knitting "Iky" using them.

My other half has also made a knitting shelf for me to put my knitting up and away from little hands when not in use. I love it. I can admire my yarn and supplies all day and the kids can't get to them. ;) And I do love him. I don't have to hide my yarn stash. My cross stitch stash, however... ;)

Back to Icarus...

Is there a mistake in the chart? Should I just follow it blindly to row 19 with the increases? How many stitches are there between the O made from the yarn overs? 10? 20? I can't figure the chart out. I prefer patterns that are writting out long hand just for that reason. None of the pictures are clear enough for me to do a stitch count to figure this out on my own. Anyone know how many stitches I'm supposed to increase to before adding a second set of lace holes? Does my question make sense?

* * * * *

Heart attack time...

I just heard the sound of my 21 mo DD playing with two needles. I didn't think it was that bad because that's where my needle collection currently is because I haven't put it up on my shelf yet.

I turned around.

She's playing with wooden or bamboo needles.

I look closer.

She's playing with my Clover bamboo needles.

Iky is no where to be seen and the ball of yarn is on the table beside where she's sitting with the strand heading off to the floor.

I walk over.

DD is happily still playing with my Clover needles. My 3.25mm Clover needles. And Iky is on the floor in a tiny little pile. I carefully pick it up while DD throws the needles at me and runs upstairs. Yes, she took the needles out. I've lost my stitch markers. I cringe and grab the bag that the yarn is in and head to my chair. I sit and take a good look at Iky.

Okay. it looks like I can rescue it. I don't need to re-cast and re-do everything I've done so far. She only dropped 3 stitches. I carefully put them back on the needles and re-knit the last three stitches.

I can breath again.
I seem to have worked through my major issues with our mutual friend Icarus. I’m finally into the middle of Chart 2 and it’s actually GOING.

I will likely reach the end of my second ball today, however, which brings me to my major issue. Can’t remember if I mentioned it before, but according to my handy-dandy shawl percentage calculator I am DANGEROUSLY close to running out every time I get near my target point of 33.3% or 66.6%. I’m something like right on or only a row off when I reach each third (I’ve got three balls).

So yes, the obvious issue is that I did not have enough wiggle room with my given yarn. It’s hand-dyed yarn from a secret pal, so it’s neither easily matched nor easily obtainable. I accept the fact that I am a doofus and should have planned better.

But what do I do at this point? Since I’m on the edging, do you think that I could move down a size in my needles to get just a “metric snad” (as my conductor calls it) more yarn? It’s an obvious transition point in the patterning anyway, so maybe it wouldn’t be such a big deal. And I’m trying to think about where I could lose a couple stitches in width or something.

Currently in the middle of row 199, where I should finish row 200 if I am to get to 66.6%. Fingers crossed.

(lifted in part from my knitting blog)

Monday, June 19, 2006

Well it is nice to hear others had to start over as well. I have also changed yarns while doing it as well. But one time was not my Tohru grabed the needles, and started to chew on them, then when I went to get it off of her...the whole thing flew across the room. By time I got it all off of her, I had to redo it.

Cats you gotta love them.

Icarus is done! I used Lorna's Laces Helen's Lace, 50% silk, 50% merino, hand dyed. This thing is huge! Make sure you have a LARGE area to block it in. I am so happy with it. More pictures on my blog

Sunday, June 18, 2006

I can't believe it...

I was on row 10 or so of the first chart when I decided to take a long hard look at it.

AUGH!!! I put in an extra yarn over back at about row 3 or so.

So, I frogged it, it became a giant knot and I spent an hour undoing it.

I'll try again tomorrow.

Side note - I caught my other half reading my copy of Yarn Harlot in the car today. He says he was just doing it to make it seem like he was busy. Riiiiight. What's an ark? LOL
First Glimpse of my Icarus

Hello! It's been so encouraging to see everyone's Icarus progress, I just had to join in the fun! Icarus marks my first lace project and besides a few (okay, many) mishaps at the very beginning (it wasn't pretty), it's coming along, slowly but surely. The pattern is beautifully written (thanks, Miriam!) and this yarn (Misti Baby Alpaca) is yummy- I am having a great time knitting this shawl! This is the first photograph of my Icarus. I am now on the 2nd repeat of the first chart. You can read more about my progress on my blog. I'm looking forward to seeing all of your shawls emerge, as well as my own!
I'm so glad there are others out there that have restarted this shawl as many times as me! I'm casting on for the 3rd time, as I was knitting along, and totally missed the change in row 19 of chart 1. I was almost done with chart 1 too. Grr.

Saturday, June 17, 2006

Icarus try 2

Well, I've started Icarus again. It took me a bit to figure out the graph pattern and now that I am working on it, it is starting to make sense. I'm at about row 5 of the first chart.

I've added two stitches to the first row so that I can slip the first stitch on any row I do. As I said before I like a slipped stitch border. It just makes it look nicer, imo.

I also finished my little bag in the previous post. I just have to find a closure for it now. LOL I felted it and actually enjoyed doing so. It is just the right size for a small wallet and some money.

Anyway, I'm making Icarus out of Alpaca Drops from Garns Studio in "White" (colour 1101, dye lot 2). I have 5 balls and I'm hoping that's enough. Depending on how it turns out, I might even add a fringe to it. I like fringe in shawls. Makes them more sensual somehow. I have about 900m of yarn and that means about 980yds which should leave me 100yds spare.

I'm also working on a brainless pattern knitting bag at the same time because I have to focus too much to knit Icarus and I need something that is just an easy pattern to follow. At row 19 for Icarus, I plan on doing a lifeline. And then whenever I finish a set of repeats. Any recommendation for lifeline threads? Sewing? Cross stitch? Any idea? I've never done a lifeline before, but I can tell with Icarus, I'm going to need it!
I'm almost done, and almost out of yarn....I just finished row 9 of chart 4. It now take about 30min to finish a row. As for the yarn, is out of the color of lace wt I need, so I ordered some roving in about the same color....I'm going to have to make the last of my yarn. I have no problem spinning lace wt, I just have never worked with they're roving before, and i'm very new to spinning. (about 2 weeks) Oh and I have to have this done by July 15 for my sisters birthday.... Wish me luck!

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Good morning on this bright and sunny Florida morning. We are saying good bye to friendly Alberto who paid us a visit and with his gentle rain put out numerous wildfires and assuaged the dry conditions in many parts of our state. Here in Tallahassee, all is lovely and green.

Speaking of lovely and Icarus shawl is coming along. I am knitting it in SeaSilk, the Paris colorway which has deep purple, jungle green, with some copper iridescents -- really soft and lovely. Size 5 needles give it a nice fabric, but I think I could have even gone up to size 6. I'm playing the length out by ear because I only have 3 hanks of it which is the equivilant of 1200 meters. I am now on the second repeat of chart 1 and am loving the design and the way it looks. It is not as lacy as the shown pattern, but I am happy and plan to do Icarus in something more delicate at a later time.

Pegasus (Peggy K)

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

First I would like to thank you guys for letting me join this Kal. This is my first lace project, and I am enjoying it very much. Even though I have had to start over so many times, I think I have the pattern memorized...

I have a picture of my shawl up at my site, just click on MaryAnn, and it will take you there. Once there, look for the picture of the fuzzy bat, and that is my shawl so far.

Thanks again for letting me join.
Second try

Well I started over yesterday. I decided it was indeed about the process and I am just enough of a perfectionist to need it done right. I've gotten about 25 short little rows done and can sure see a difference when those k2tog became the ssk they're supposed to be. I'm glad I when ahead with the redo because it really does look better than it did. The yarn over spaces are now equal in size. I'll post a picture when I have something to show.

Monday, June 12, 2006

Hey everybody!

I'm having so much fun seeing everyone's lovely Icari in progress - and finished! I've added "Finished!" next to the names of those who have with a link to their FO post in the participant sidebar. What do you all think? And have I missed anyone?

Happy Knitting!

Icarus shawl, blocking

Icarus shawl, blocking
Originally uploaded by Sophie_vf.
It's blocking! I finished casting off during the Italian-Ghana game of the World cup, then ran cotton cord through the top edge and center before soaking in Eucalan and blocking. It's huge! I needed three towels to put under this sucker. Can hardly wait till it dries.

The puffy lace, pre-blocking, and somehow very weird purple colour:

puffy lace

And a closeup of the stitch detail:

stitch detail, Icarus shawl

I think it's going to swallow up my vertically challenged self, but I'm glad I knit all the repeats. The proportion of stockinette to lace is perfect, and well balanced to my eye. I really enjoyed knitting the lace portion - as Kate mentioned, just as you think you have the pattern figured out it changes - but that made it fun and interesting. Watching the pattern emerge was a delight.

The one thing I didn't like was binding off. Ugh. I have done the k2, slip back and k2tog thing and like that bindoff - but I absolutely hated doing it purlwise. I hate binding off purlwise at the best of times, but this felt extra-tortuous. Honestly, I think I would take the slight detraction in appearance by binding off knitwise, if I had the choice again.
Also, I think that if I did this again, I would make the little garter stitch strip at the top. I find it disconcerting to have it start off with YO's, and it looks a bit fragile to me. So, I'd probably try a puny little 2 stitch strip and pick up 1 garter ridge stitch to give myself the 5 stitches to start off next time. Or something.

Otherwise, I enjoyed this shawl very very much. It had just the right balance of relaxed, "easy" sections and "thinky" sections. Kudos to Miriam for a terrific pattern!

I am on the the 2nd row of the 4th repeat. I had to tink 2 rows last night and now I have a teeny, tiny knot in my yarn that I am going to have to use a needle and a magnifying glass to get out. Sometimes it's very frustrating but I keep plodding along with an eye toward the finished product. Kate's turned out so lovely. I hope I can get mine to look as good.

I signed up for the Mystery Stole 2006 KAL on Melanie's blog. It doesn't start til July 7 and hopefully, if all goes well, I can have Icarus done by then. I went to Y2Knit and bought more Zephyr in Sage and knitted the swatch on Friday night. I haven't blocked it yet but I like the way the flower motif looks in the yarn so I'm sure it will work fine.

Meanwhile my life belongs to Icarus.

Sunday, June 11, 2006

You know, it's just so great when you think you're being all clever and that the pattern might work itself out just fine by making ONE column of eyelets around the triangle closest to the edge/center before magically splitting into two somewhere, but then it DOESN'T. Don't you just love it when things like that happen?

My brain is seriously not parsing instructions very well.

I was at 50% or so. I don't even know what stage I'm working on when I'm deconstructing 30 rows at a time in the middle alone.

Le sigh.

Saturday, June 10, 2006

My Icarus Posted by Picasa
HI everyone! Meet my Icarus. She is made from lace wt wool from handpainted I am hoping I have enough yarn to finish this, (one skien) because this is for my sisters b-day next month, and well they don't have any of this color left...I'm on row 8 of chart 2. This is my first lace from a chart, so far so good, but I am a little scared of chart 4....
Vancouver, BC KIP - guess what I cast on?

Yup. Icarus.

Then I proceeded to mess it up. When I got home, I had to frog what I've done since I didn't have any markers on me, and using yarn just seems wrong, ya know? So as soon as I got home, I frogged it when I realized I had made a mistake.I'm in the purple. I'm working on Celty which is a pouch designed by a local-to-me designer in a sheep wool variant I can actual touch. I had put Icarus away by the time that photo was taken because I wasn't sure if I made a mistake and didn't want to make it worse. If I didn't have a migraine, I'd re-cast tonight. It'll have to wait till tomorrow unless I can make this migraine go away.Gotta love how I'm yelling at my kid to behave. In my hands is my first attempt. It took me at least 10 attempts to get the Irish Diamond shawl right, so, two or three for Icarus should be just about right.
I'm thinking about adding two stitches on the edge because I like to slip the first stitch. It makes a neater edge imo.
New pictures, modeled:

More on my blog, as usual. I'm going to stop posting every day now, and get back to work! It's lovely seeing shawl after shawl pop up here, though, and in all the differently gorgeous colors. I really think this is one of the more perfect patterns I've ever knit (perfect in an objective sense, but more importantly perfect for my particular tastes, abilities, etc), and the resulting FO is one of the most wearable items I've knitted to date. And being part of the KAL has made the knitting of it one of the most pleasurably social projects I've ever done, too. Knitting has been a mostly solitary hobby for me, which is fine, but it is so much fun to crow about having finished all those enormous rows of lace, with only a few mostly-invisible mistakes, to people who actually intimately know what that means! :-)

-Kate from NYC

Friday, June 09, 2006

We have another finisher!

Michelle of sent me some fun pictures of her finished shawl and a cute little someone getting in on the fun.

It looks super, Michelle!


I'm posting on Michelle's behalf because a few people have had some difficulty with the invitations. I'm sorry about that, folks. I'm not sure what's going on, but if you are having trouble, let me know and we'll see what we can do.

Icarus shawl - beginning lace charts

I think this is row 5 or so of chart 3. I really like the way the lace is developing - having the purl columns helps me keep my place, and the pattern seems to develop naturally from the section above it. I still do make mistakes, and am making them now (especially as I'm watching the World Cup while working on this) but the pattern is visually clear so usually I can catch them fairly quickly. I think I'll put a lifeline in after I finish chart 3, though, because it looks more complicated after that.

The main problem I have is purling back on the wrong side - whenever I have YO's associated with a purl stitch, they look really funny on the other side and if I'm not careful I can mistake one stitch for two, or purl into the wrong strand. It keeps me on my toes!

And here's a pic in "poofy breeches" mode:

icarus shawl, in poofy drawer mode
Starting over

I'm about 60 rows in and had set aside Icarus for a while to finish some other stuff. When I picked it back up again a couple days ago I got to looking at the chart and looking at my shawl and realized that I had k2tog in every place I was supposed to ssk. Yikes! Although it might not show to anyone but me I'm concerned that that mistake will affect the pattern when I get to the more intricate lacy border section. So after mulling it over for 2 days I've decided that 60 rows isn't all that much to have to undo. Since I'm so turtle slow I know it will be a while til I catch up to where I was but I will press on. I'll post a picture when I get a few rows done of my do-over just so ya'll can keep encouraging me to press on.
Thanks for being there!

Thursday, June 08, 2006

sigh....i just had to frog everything I had knit on Icarus thus far. I had already started my second repeat when I noticed a snag of yarn about an inch long. I have no idea how it happened but I could not fix it by tugging at it, and it was on the edge of the first few rows. UGH!! But I remind myself, I love to knit, it was an easy knit, I'm not in a hurry to finish. Rinse. Repeat.
I’m done!!

Here it is, blocked. Lots more pictures (LOTS!) are on my blog. It’s taking up our entire living room (and we live in a 1-br apartment, so this really means something). The hardest part by far of the whole project was the blocking – next time I make a shawl, I’ll be sure to have blocking wires. Everything else was easy, though. I think it helps me a lot that each new part of the pattern grows in a straight line from the previous rows, so that I found I caught mistakes quickly because they looked wrong right away. I think I had three mistakes that I didn’t catch in time to tink back to in the same row. These I fixed by dropping a few rows down when I got to that place. Now that it’s blocked, I can’t find any obvious mistakes. But it’s pretty obvious from the photos that I’m blocking it in lines that are not terribly straight!

Now my obsession is over, and for the first time in days, I can think about something other than Icarus. My husband is very relieved. :-)

-Kate from NYC

Wednesday, June 07, 2006


I made a boo-boo! Razzlefrazzin DOH! I was just getting ready to start the fancy bits, when I was admiring all of my hard work when I noticed this! It's about 32 rows up. 32 long rows. Sigh.

And it's only these two yo columns. Yep, all the other columns line up tickity boo, lovely jubbly and bob's your uncle.

So I have to rip. I'm not one of these people who rips if it's a little mistake, or if it's something that I can cover up and call a design element. I'm really not a perfectionist. But this. Well it's just too wrong...

My automatic pilot was having a bad day.

Good news is that tomorrow's my birthday and I booked off a 4 day weekend!! Bad news is that all my plans keep falling through, so I don't know what I'll be doing with myself. I guess fixing my latest doofus manouver.

I've been wondering if I can just drop the offending yo columns and try to fix it without totally ripping... I'm thinking probably could do it - but that it's going to make me more nuts than just ripping all the way down and reknitting. Feedback would sure be appreciated.

Anyway - have fun everyone! Abi
Still plugging away....

Another whole day (almost) of knitting, and I'm still not quite done. Just finished Chart 4, and will do the final 4 rows plus BO tomorrow. It's taking more yarn, as well as more time, than I expected. Looks like it'll end up at about 900 meters, which in my yarn is 225 grams. That's compared to almost all of an 800 meter skein, at 100 grams, that was recommended in the pattern. Knowing my yarn was thicker (18 WPIs versus the recommended 25), I thought it would take a little more yarn, but not that much! I'm glad I skipped doing an extra repeat of Chart 1!

Speaking of which - I measured my standard, $10-on-the-street fake Pashmina, and it's exactly 72" wide, like the finished Icarus is supposed to be. And only 30" long. I pinned up the corners of the pashmina to make it more triangular, and tried it out - plenty big, and I'm tall (5'8"), with very long arms.

I'll tune in again tomorrow with - I swear I'll really get there this time! - the finished shawl!!

-Kate from NYC

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

I'm on Chart 4, Row 9!!!

This is the best pic I can get, at this hour, of my progress. There's a couple more pictures on my blog. Will delight in taking many pretty pictures tomorrow, when I'm done!!! The lacey part is still easy, btw, but more fun, because the easy pattern is slightly different every row, or just when you get sick of it...

Really must get some sleep, now. There was no excuse for staying up this late knitting....

-Kate from NYC

Thank you all for the well wishes for Mom. Today was a bad day but hopefully tomorrow will be better. I got a couple of rows done on Icarus, I think I'll keep plugging away at it as is and see what happens. There is 2 inches inbetween the start and first repeat and the pattern states it's about 2 1/2 inches so I think I'll be ok. Maybe i'll have to do 3 repeats more instead of my planned two because of this super fine yarn and size 2 needles, but we'll see.

I always say about ripping, I love to knit, so here I go....knitting again!!
I finally made it to the 5th repeat of chart one!! Sorry, no pics to post. Just wanted to share that.

Monday, June 05, 2006

What Do You Think?

Icarus 6-5-06 row 22
Originally uploaded by Inky Knits.
If you've been following my blog you know my mom had brain surgery to drain a subdural hematoma 5 days ago and we are lucky that she is home today!! she's feeling weak but getting her back home is a huge thing. So thank you for all the good thoughts, keep 'em comin!!

On to Icarus. I had thought to make it from 8/2 Tencel but I did not like the way it knit up, so I started it in a very fine lacewieght Zenga Baruffa merino. I have 1460 yds (100 gram ball) and the yarn used in the IK sample was 875 yds in a 100 gram ball, so mine is almost half as fine. I"m also using size 2 needles instead of size 3.

This image shows where I am on row 22 of chart 1 - do you think it's the right size for being at this point? it' s looking so tiny. The part on the needles is about 6.5 inches wide right now, unstretched. I know I have to do at least one if not two increases to make the shawl bigger than as shown in IK.

So, what do you all think? too tiny? just right? goldilocks needs some help over here :0)

Icarus Goes to the Game!

Hubby and I went to the baseball game yesterday and I knit as usual. We are lucky to have a Minor League team here in town, the Hagerstown Suns. They're a Mets affiliate. We go to most of the home games. It's a great place to get some knitting done.

Icarus is coming along. I've learned the value of lifelines (the hard way) and i'm doing them every 5 or 10 rows, depending on my confidence level.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Slowly but Surely...
I am making progress - I've updated my blog with the details of why I had to start over, but all in all, I am still loving my first lace project! I did switch from circular to straight needles when I started over - we'll see if I switch back once it's a little bigger. I'm going to NY this weekend, and am debating over whether or not lace is a 'bus knitting' project...Thoughts?

Icarus (still on chart 1)

Saturday, June 03, 2006

BTW, noticing that my yarn does appear to be thicker than others', I finally checked the WPIs. Mine's 18 or 19, where the yarn called for in the pattern is 25. I guess I should have checked this before I started but, oh well - I like the effect I'm getting anyway. When properly stretched, it's as holey as I could want, and now it'll also be plenty warm to actually serve as a very functional wrap just when I need it - worn with a little black dress to Barge Music (concert series on NY harbor), where I have hitherto frozen my @$^% off for lack of appropriate outerwear.

But I wonder - how many WPIs do the rest of you have?

-Kate, the one from NYC

The effect is no doubt helped by the color and relative thickness of my yarn, but don't you think the Icarus at this stage very closely resembles a rather saggy example of men's poofy breeches from the Elizabethan period??

Friday, June 02, 2006

Well. Here's my progress up to the last four rows of the last chart:

And here's another picture of the yarn that's left:

What's that you say? Why yes. Uh-huh. That's an end. The end. Gaaaaaaaah!

Either I'm a very loose knitter, or the alpaca cloud didn't actually have as much yardage as it was supposed to. I don't know which. So, of course Icarus has spent the last week in time out, ever since I ran out last Saturday. In the meantime, I finished Sivia Harding's Angel Pearls Scarf. It made me feel a *little* bit better. Enough so that I actually photographed Icarus. So, now I need to find some Knitpicks Alpaca Cloud, Sunlight color, dyelot 9356. Grrr. Does anyone just happen to have some lying around that they would barter or sell? Pretty pleeeeeeeease?

Meanwhile, Lisa Souza is sending me some of her amazing alpaca laceweight yarn in the sea glass colorway. I can't wait! It' s making me happy. :) Otherwise I'd be *seriously* sulking....

Slow and steady wins the race, right?

I cast on just hours after I got the magazine, but now.... I'm only just starting the fourth repeat. It's a lovely pattern, but I get distracted by other projects. :)

Slow and steady. Slow and steady.

I'm using Alpaca with a Twist Fino in white (purdy) and size four needles. Because I'm a cheat. It looks a little funky now, but I think the blocking will help even out my stitches immensely. When I get that far, that is. ;)
1....2...3 strikes and your out at the old ball game. Yep I'm out. If your looking for the photos I took today, so am I. After trying 3 times to upload, I have given up. If you want to see them, visit my blog. Michelle ( knitalittle) I was able to upload then, not now. I have started Chart 3. My needle is so full and hard to hold. The lace works up really well and a joy to work up. I had feared that on slip and it would be back to the beginning. Not so.
Back to knitting so I can finish. Good luck all :) .

study? or knit?

study? or knit?
Originally uploaded by Sophie_vf.
I had a midterm Wednesday yet the night before I could not keep myself from working on this damned shawl. Sometime around 1 in the morning, I found that I'd misplaced a yo/decrease pair, and had to drop 5 stiches about 5 rows down to get to it. The next morning, I knew I really *should* study before going in to write the exam but I was so obsessed with the idea of fixing my error that I couldn't even sit down till I'd done it. So with safety pins and my size 1 dpns, I knit back up, found another mistake, again dropped down about 6 rows, knit those back up, then did a few rows just to make sure all was well.

Then I was relaxed enough to study :)