Ever increasing circles

The shawl that died is busy being reincarnated (you’ve got to love yarn for that) as – another shawl. Well, there’s a limit to what you can do with laceweight.SONY DSC
The shawl that I’m knitting is the Shipwreck Shawl from Knitty and I’m really liking it even though the thing I originally liked about the pattern was the dark greeny-sea-blue that it’s made in. Intelligent observers will note that I am not knitting my Shipwreck in dark greeny-sea-blue. Nothing about the sea is shades of pink. Except maybe sea-anemones. So perhaps what we have here is a Sea-Anemone Shawl.

In any case, it’s currently going well. I got past the slightly aggravating part where I cast-on the beginning about seventeen times (partly because I didn’t read the pattern properly and partly because for my money you need at least five hands to successfully cast on using the ring method in laceweight). Mostly I got past it because I was away on a course Making Something Not in Wool (of which more later) and what with waking up every morning at five and breakfast not being till eight I had some chunks of time on my hands. Which never normally happens. I can guarantee that if I’d been at home this would still be ball in the stash.

So now I’m done with pattern (I know it doesn’t really look like anything but lace never does till it’s blocked. You wait.) and I’m on to faggoting.SONY DSC

I am faggoting, faggoting, faggoting. Because that’s what you do. There are no more increases, nothing of any interest happens between now and the border. Just YO, K2tog, on ever increasing needles. And beading. Oh yes, beading. If you’ve been here before you may remember the last beaded project took me Four Years. What with the having to stop every thirty stitches to unravel more yarn, and the shoving all the beads along, and the yarn breakages, and the beads all falling off, and the reathreading of the frickin’ beads. Oh yes, beading is g.r.e.a.t.

BUT. It makes for the pretty, and if we’re not going to be about the pretty, why are we here (Truth is Beauty and all that). And to be honest I think it will add some nice weight and swing to the finished shawl, otherwise I wouldn’t have started (pretty notwithstanding). I’ve got about 242 beads left, which is 18 rows, and I’ve decided to stick the border on there because a shawl doesn’t have to fit. And I will remind myself several times that the important thing is not to run out of yarn. Because we’ve been there once already with this yarn and neither of us wants to go there again.

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The shawl that died

This…SONY DSC
has become this…SONY DSC
Usually the process works in the other direction of course, but readers with long memories may recollect this shawl/stole problem.  It became obvious that the border wasn’t going to come out of the remaining yarn, so I stuffed the whole caboodle into the stash box and it lurked there until a couple of nights ago. I took a deep breath and Frogged The Lot in front of Game of Thrones. So now I get to do something else with it!

I’ve had this at the back of my mind for ages: Bethany Kok’s Shipwreck Shawl, which is sort of based on Elizabeth Zimmerman’s Pi shawl (Ravelry link). I like the idea of the beads and the weight/drape they’d add to the shawl, but the prospect of pre-stringing 5,000 of them is rather daunting. The last beaded thing I did took four years…

Finally?

This is a project with a v-e-r-y long gestation. The word is apposite because the main reason it’s been sitting unloved for three and a half years is that I’ve been pregnant or breastfeeding or both for three and a half years. Neither of which is compatible with a skinny-knit delicate beaded cardigan. And there was no way I was going to knit on something I couldn’t wear.

However, childbearing is in abeyance (for the moment) so I’m getting going on it again. It’s maddening to knit for several reasons

i) it’s in 4ply so it’s r-e-a-l-l-y slow progress at the best of times

ii) the beads don’t ‘slide’ down the yarn, I have to shove them all along so I’m stopping to do that every few inches

iii) the yarn has a lot of breaks (three in the current ball alone) so I’m having to take off all the beads and re-thread them on a regular basis (and of course if there were too few to start with you have to break off and thread on a load more)

It is not a well-loved project. Plus I’m secretly worried that it’s actually going to be too small. In theory the measurements should fit me but there just doesn’t seem to be very  much of it.

However, I now have a back, two fronts and half a sleeve, so it does feel like progress is being made…