aswim in knits

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

what I did on my long weekend

This weekend was the Massachusetts Sheep and Wool Festival, a lovely fiber festival in my home state. I did not go.

Instead, Thom and I cleaned the house. We have been extraordinarily lazy recently, and the house was a pit of filth. Every pot was dirty, as were all of the drinking glasses. The dust bunnies under the beds were the size of softballs.

And the lawn ... well, the lawn is the bane of my home-owning existence. I'm rather afraid of gas-powered lawn-mowers (big! noisy! sharp blades!) and therefore have very little interest in learning how to use ours. And my darling husband is no more fond of them than I am, although he's not a scaredy-cat like me. After we he the landscapers that were there to remove the pool from the backyard mowed for the first time this year, a friend who lives in another part of town said "hey, I was over by your house and saw that you guys cut the lawn this week!" It was embarrassingly bad. Now it's merely a little scruffy looking. That I can live with.

So, we devoted this weekend to some serious cleaning. And, thanks to George Bush's misguided economic stimulus package, we splurged on a new vacuum cleaner. A Dyson DC25. And by "we", I do mean "Thom." He is the vacuumer-in-chief in our household. I use the vacuum cleaner about as often as the lawnmower.
Before you think that I am a total pig, I'll have you know that I do all of the laundry and ironing, most of the organizing tasks, and most of the bathroom cleaning. Anyways, we now have a sparkling clean house. Except for the craft room. I didn't touch that one yet!!

Since I didn't get to hang out with friends at the festival, I did treat myself to a little bit of spinning time at night.

This is a 70/30 merino/tencel blend that I picked up at Mind's Eye Yarns last year. I got 12 ounces with no particular plans for it. It's a lovely purple, very vibrant. It's a true purple -- not blue-ish or pink-ish, just purple.

merino tencel blend (by aswim in knits)

This weekend, I pulled it out of the stash and after some sampling, I determined that it wanted to be a laceweight 2-ply.
sampling (by aswim in knits)

Who am I to argue?
singles for laceweight 2-ply (by aswim in knits)

I'm sure I won't need all 12 ounces!! I'll see what kind of yardage I get from 4 ounces, and pick a pattern. If I need more, then I can spin more.

So, since I've never knit a lace shawl or stole, I'm open to suggestions. I have no fear of lace, and I've knit lace in sweaters and socks. Beth, Carole, Terry, Cheryl, anyone else who likes lace ... any recommendations?

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  • OMG what a beautiful color purple. If you decide to sell some of your stash let me know. It is yummy.

    By Anonymous debbi, at 3:18 PM  

  • My first lace shawl was the Forest Canopy Shawl by Susan Lawrence. Good one to learn on, comes out pretty and easy to add repeats if you want it deeper.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3:27 PM  

  • Oooh, the possibilities. Icarus, Seraphim, Leaf Lace, Flower Basket, those are all great first lace shawl projects.

    By Blogger Carole Knits, at 3:36 PM  

  • Very very pretty! Good starter lace projects are Leaf Lace, Flower Basket, Swallowtail (and you can skip those nupps entirely or use a bead in place), Icarus, Forest Canopy. Shetland Triangle from Wrap Style I think (maybe Scarf Style - i can never remember)... all sorts of great patterns out there!

    By Blogger CrazyFiberLady, at 3:51 PM  

  • that purple is lovely. it'll make a great shawl.

    yeah i don't mow the lawn either. but joe does/did. well part of it. i suggested to him that maybe he might want to hire someone to do it. you know, so he can find time to install more siding.

    how does thom like the dyson?

    and no ironing happens in our house.

    By Anonymous maryse, at 4:03 PM  

  • My hubby is the vacuumer-in-chief in our household, too. He went away once and I didn't know how to turn the stupid thing on; we had owned it for a few years at the time! How's that for bad?

    Love the yarn; what a gorgeous color of purple. I can't wait to see what it becomes.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 4:05 PM  

  • Also, "road not taken" (f/k/a Zig Zag lace) from Lisa Lloyd -- in her new book "A Fine Fleece" -- is a good one. There are some other nice lace scarves in the book.

    By Anonymous Kathy, at 4:22 PM  

  • I vote for a Shetland Triangle. I made mine out of merino/tencel(that I also got at Mind's eye) and I love it. That pattern lends itself well to the drapiness of merino/tencel, and it's the kind of pattern that you can make bigger or smaller easily, so you can use up all of your yarn and not have little bits left over.

    By Anonymous Cheryl, at 4:25 PM  

  • There's always Enchained Melody.

    (Any photos yet?)

    By Blogger Lucia, at 5:19 PM  

  • I'm afraid of lawnmowers, too. :) Eeep! Dysons are great, although there has been one small incident with that "constant suction"...

    I love your purple fiber. No surprise, really. :)

    By Blogger Chris, at 6:40 PM  

  • spring cleaning time! we've been doing a lot of cleaning around here too :) the laceweight is just gorgeous!

    By Blogger gleek, at 8:07 PM  

  • I loved doing the Flower Basket, the Diamond Fantasy and the Waves in the Square. The easist was the Flower Basket. Haven't done the Shetland Triangle but it's on my list-so pretty.

    By Blogger Emily, at 8:23 PM  

  • Have you seen Edible Estates? It's all about ripping up the lawn and planting veggies and flowers in a way that's more visually interesting than beds in side-by-side rows and less water/labor intensive than the Almighty Lawn.

    By Blogger Local Egg, at 9:27 PM  

  • Whooo, beautiful fiber!! I hear you on the cleaning front... I never notice how dusty or cluttered my house is until someone comes over. Like my MOTHER IN LAW. heh

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:30 PM  

  • Ooh! I would like to know what you and Thom think of the Dyson! I've wanted one for a couple years, but the regular models are SO big and heavy and hard to maneuver in our space. But I recently saw these new, smaller, ball ones and I want one!

    By Blogger Bertha, at 10:02 PM  

  • -Love our Dyson. Love. Never thought I would want to see my dirt swirling around, but it is very rewarding. Yeah, I know, I need a life.
    -Missed you on Saturday.
    -The purple is so beautiful.

    By Blogger Laurie, at 6:17 AM  

  • Gorgeous purple, you are an impressive knitter AND spinner.

    By Blogger (Not-So) Cynical Gal, at 8:59 AM  

  • Now how is it possible that you've never done a shawl?! Let us rectify that situation pronto!

    First decision: shape. I love knitting triangles, but who knows, maybe you are a rectangle kind of girl.

    Second: do you want to start with something that is fairly simple? If so, you absolutely can't go wrong with Evelyn Clark. I particularly like Shetland Triangle because it's incredibly easy to do, but looks quite complex. If you want a bit more of a challenge, try Flower Basket or Leaf Lace.

    By Anonymous Beth S., at 3:19 PM  

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