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Not quite dry yet…and I still can’t decide about those colours.

I knew I needed my 4mm needle for the upcoming Rock Island cast on, so even though I was using it for the Damson shawl, it was no big deal. I was going to put it on some waste yarn. Then something came over me: why not just finish Damson to free the needle?

I put in so many knitting hours this past week that I finally had to teach myself to knit continental to save my poor cramped right hand. I predict a Carson Demers workshop is in my future – the one on how to knit without hurting yourself.

Still trying to reserve judgement until I can wear it, but I’m fairly unenthusiastic about this one. The size is a bit small, which I knew going into it; usually I find more substantial shawls to be more stylish. Good thing my needle is free to start gargantuan Rock Island tonight.

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I’m home sick with a cold today. It’s not so bad.

In between naps and soup breaks, I can:

Weave in ends. And more ends.

Wash and block the reindeer sweater.

Finish the thumb on my left Bella’s mitten.

As you can see, the reindeer sweater is nearly done. As soon as I’m better, I’m off to buy a zipper. On a related note, my mom gave me a beautiful *authentic* Cowichan sweater for Christmas. It really is lovely and I’ll try to get a photo of it up here soon.

The wedding shrug is blocking. I stole a page from sweetgeorgia‘s book and bought some $5 marker flags at Canadian Tire. Marker flag minus flag = blocking wires! I’m just not prepared to pay $25 for something I can buy at the hardware store instead.

And that’s all you’ll see of this piece until after the wedding…

An update on my remarkably slow progress on the beaded cardigan…

blocked-bianca

blocked fronts

This morning I washed and blocked the two front pieces. Two things were immediately apparent:

  1. I misread the neck shaping instructions, adding about 15 extra rows. Both sides. Oh well, it could be a lot worse, right?
  2. I really need to learn how to do short rows.

But, just two sleeves to go. I really hope this turns out.

blocked-bianca-detail

there are beads in there...

Plus, a little test swatch of the handspun silk and merino. I’ve always appreciated handmade things, but this process has upped the ante. The time and care involved in carding, spinning, dyeing, and knitting is amazing. A woman I once knew was horrified that I bought my clothing in consignment and thrift stores, because she believed that the (potentially negative) energy of the previous owners was still somehow occupying the fibres of the clothes. Whatever you think about that, it’s interesting to consider all the energy that goes into handspun and handknit items that makes them so much more special than something from Cheap-Mart…or maybe I’ve just watched Like Water for Chocolate one too many times.

silk-merino-swatch

swatchlet

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