Back for the Olympics

Yeah, okay, it's been FOREVER, but I have my reasons (a vacation, a move, a crisis at church, a death in the family, a new addition to the family, good reasons all).

So, I am doing Stephanie's Knitting Olympics this year, and I don't want anyone to tell me the project I've chosen isn't challenging enough. It's pretty darn challenging when you consider it needs to be done in two weeks while watching sports on television.
East Meets West Satchel

This is the East Meets West Satchel kit in the purple colorway. I bought it for M for Christmas, knowing that she wasn't going to tackle it, but also knowing she fell in love with it when we first saw it in the catalog. I am looking forward to working on it, especially since my knitting of late has consisted of a lot of lace and a lot of felting (which I promise to share with the blog over the next few days). It'll be a nice change of pace to do some colorwork on tiny needles.

As you can see, I've already made myself a color card. There are 21 different colors in this thing, half of which are shades of pink and purple I could never keep straight without some help. My fingers are itching to cast on tonight.

Just off the needles (and off the blocking board):
Leaf and Trellis Shawl

Pattern: Leaf and Trellis Shawl from Victorian Lace Today
Yarn: Classic Elite Silky Alpaca Lace in garnet, used approx 1145m
Needles: Knit Picks nickel-plated interchangeable 4mm with 32" cable and Knit Picks Harmony 8" DP 4mm for the border
Mods: As have many people with patterns from this book, I was going to run out of yarn if I used the beautiful border in the book, so I doodled up a very simple border which echoes the trellis pattern in the body of the shawl and allowed me to complete the shawl with 14g of yarn to spare. Also, the Silky Alpaca Lace is slightly finer than the yarn called for in the pattern, so I went down a needle size.

This is my first entry in the 10 Shawls in 2010 Challenge on Ravelry. I had originally hoped and planned to have it done in January, but it seemed to have a mind of its own (and then there was the freak eye injury thanks to one of the cats that kept me sidelined from knitting anything more complex than a garter-stitch blanket for a couple of days), so it wasn't off the needles until this past Wednesday.

I thoroughly enjoyed the knitting of this project and have become a convert to the knitted-on border idea. It's a little awkward at first, what with all that weight of the body getting in the way of working on the border, but once I was under way it was a delight. And I love the stitch pattern so much that I actually plan on making us some curtains (okay, valances and/or cafe curtains) using it sometime soon.

Next up for the 10 Shawls Challenge, Traveling Woman by Liz Abinante (aka Feministy). I already have the feeling that this will become (like my Daybreak Shawl has) a favorite:
Traveling Woman Shawl

The yarn is Handarbeitskrom by Selana Handpainted Sock Yarn in colorway "Pink is Beautiful", and I am loving the way the colors (more purple than pink, really) play in the stockinette portion of the shawl. I will probably keep this one around for the Olympics for when I need a break from colors and charts and just want to watch Shaun White flip and fly.

Check back soon for details on this:
Big Brother

And why we are now trying to furnish a massive outdoor room.

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