Off The Needles

IMG_2275

Jeweled Cowl

Project details and mods here.

IMG_2283

Chambord Pullover

 Project details and mods here.

Last week I finished two projects!

Both the Jeweled Cowl and Chambord Pullover were quick knits, in different ways.  With the cowl, that fresh spring green and the sparkly beads kept me wanting more.  It was definitely a “one more row” type of project.  This is a pattern I probably would not have gravitated toward on my own; I started it as part of a knit-along at Stash, and I’m so glad I did.  Beading with a teensy tiny crochet hook isn’t so awful, did you know that?

I chose to knit Chambord as part of the Stash and Burn group’s Use It or Lose It challenge.  This is a challenge meant to inspire us to use that deep stash yarn in concentrated periods (13 in 2013); if you don’t love it after trying to use it, you get to lose it.  I got excited to use a deeply stashed sweater quantity of Plymouth Tweed, and thus a sweater was knit.  I love the finished result, but the yarn wasn’t all that pleasant to work with.  I can appreciate a sheepy, rustic wool, but for sweater knitting I think I’ll stick to more smooth, plump yarns from now on.

In any case, that’s a ton of yarn out of the stash, and it feels really great to have these 2 project off the needles!

Here are some outtakes from my low-key impromptu play room photo shoot.  It was directed by PB, and she took all the photos of Chambord in this post.  Love!

IMG_2284

 

IMG_2286

Always the Knitting

Jeweled Cowl by Sachiko Uemura

Chambord sweater– onward to the sleeves!

Last week was long, strange, challenging, and insightful. In so many ways I felt inadequate, as if whatever I managed to accomplish wasn’t enough, and everything I didn’t get done was monumental.

Ever feel that way?

It’s not fun.

So, after a bit of a late-night pity party and cry fest with Sweetie, I am feeling strengthened and empowered to start saying No to things I’m not passionately excited about, and to move forward on some projects that have been on the back burner for too long. I think these two strategies will help me feel a bit more focused and a whole lot calmer.

Through it all, as always, I knit. I knit fast when I’m upset and talking a hundered miles an hour. I knit slowly when the day is winding down and I’m just trying to stay awake a few moments longer. I knit in short spurts at work to show someone the magic that is knititng with beads. And I knit quickly again during PB’s weekend naps, trying to sqeeze in just a few more rows before she wakes up.

Always the knitting.

Here’s to a new week, fresh starts, good friends, chocolate peanute butter cookies, and the promise of a new project to cast on very soon.

Because these two wips? They are in the home stretch!

Yarn Along:: Mysterious Cables

IMG_2085

 

Chambord by Thea Coleman in Plymouth Tweed

Chambord by Thea Colman in Plymouth Tweed

I picked up this book on an impromptu trip to the bookshop recently.  I had been in a full on grumpy-mama mood and was essentially banished from the house to clear my head.  It was for the best, and after just a few minutes browsing the aisles of one of our local book stores I felt much better.

While at the store my mind was completely blank, however.  The titles of all the books I’d been meaning to read fled my brain, and the handy list of notes I keep for such moments was uninspiring.  Having seen a recent post on Katie’s blog about what she had recently read, I turned to her for a recommendation.  Her praise for Mr. Penumbra’s 24 Hour Bookstore made the decision easy, and a few minutes later I left with the book.  It has proven to be a fun thrill ride through the mysterious stacks of Mr. Penumbra’s book store, filled with codes, adventures, quirky characters, and intrigue.  I’m down to the last two chapters and can’t wait to see how it ends!

On the needles this week is a new project: the Chambord Pullover.  Excited after my recent sweater win, I decided to excavate some deep stash yarn and cast on another.  This tweedy yarn and cozy sweater are such a good combination that I couldn’t resist.  The knitting has been fairly straightforward, which is always nice. I only just noticed a mis-crossed cable that must have happened while I was knitting with friends during the Oscars on Sunday.  I’ve decided to leave it.

What’s on your nightstand and in your project basket this week?

p.s. Yarn Along is inspired, as ever, by the delightful Ginny.

p.p.s. The cover of this book glows in the dark.