Something Blue

You probably thought this post was going to have something to do with the wedding!
I managed to get a few good pictures of the Terracotta sweater in natural light. It really shows the attractive cobalt colour.

I also finished a scarf! It is made from the Dye-Version yarn in the colour Rustico. I believe the pattern is called the Bright Eyelet Scarf. I’ve had it on my needles since April; I am relieved to finally have it done!
Now that I have finished something from my black boxes of knitting, I was able to cast on something I wanted to work on. The Clapotis Scarf is really more of a shawl; it’s knit diagonally and every five stitches you drop a stitch and unravel it to the bottom. I only just started dropping stitches to create the small ladder effect. As I am knitting along, I see the dropped stitch and have a small aneurism. I think, ‘oh s@#*, I dropped a stitch! How did I do that?! How have I not noticed before?!” Then I realize… I did it on purpose. It is not something comfortable to do; most people try REALLY hard to PREVENT the dropping of stitches.
I know Alanna has been waiting forever to take a stab at this shawl I started working on it a few days after she started. We were both really surprised to find the ladders were not yarn-overs. Even though the intentional dropping of stitches stresses me right out, I am determined to finish.
Alanna is back from Lithuania as of late Friday night. I met her for lunch with my mom Saturday and gave her the second half of her birthday present. It is a personalized yarn bowl!
I knew I wanted to get her a yarn bowl, but I had to find a good one. The only close yarn store I know of that carries them, The Wool Bin, had few choices; I turned to Etsy. As soon as I found the Maid of Clay page, I knew this was EXACTLY what I was looking for. Alanna has a hard time finding anything personalized due to her name’s atypical spelling. Since Michelle is a relatively common name, I’ve never had this problem and realized it’s something I’ve always taken for granted.
It has been so hard keeping a lid on this; I knew she would love it! Opening it, she knew it was a yarn bowl, but guessed there was more to it since I was simmering with barely controlled glee. Then BAM personalized yarn bowl and my weeks of waiting were over. This is why I don’t buy Christmas presents in advance; I just can’t stand the suspense!
On a calmer note, the washer, dryer blocking is AMAZING!! It takes the whole process from two or three days to one hour, that’s right ONE HOUR. I didn’t start with anything too delicate or precious; one of my first wool sweaters that’s not a good fit. I put it in the washer, nobody freak out, and it was fine. The wool wash cycle puts in enough water to soak the garment for a while, and then drains it with very little spinning. The drier has a small shelf to insert so the drum turns around it and circulates the air within the chamber. You arrange your sweater on said shelf and let the drier work it’s magic. I found the wool cycle was too short, only 20 minutes. I ended up putting it on ‘timed dry’ and entered in the same settings as the wool dry and putting it on for an hour. Usually there is a slight amount of dampness left, but air drying for a short period of time would take care of that, or simply re-arranging the sweater on the shelf and turning the drier on again.
The sweater was not felted, stretched, shrunk, or disfigured in any way. I deem this washer and drier money VERY well spent.
That is all the big news for now, the rest of the yarn for Grandma’s sweater; I’ll have to start that soon. I’ll get updated pictures of the Clapotis scarf and decide what project I’ll finish next.