Monday, 17 March 2008

Mess can be productive

I had a party a week ago, which meant hiding all of my needlework stuff in bags and putting it in the bedroom so nobody spilled beer on it. I know my friends well. (I also hide the throw rugs for the same reason. Handwashing woollen rugs? Ick.)

Of course, because I was in a hurry and was in the middle of a baking session, I didn't put things away in any particular order. Which meant that when I went to look for my lucet this weekend, I couldn't find it. This meant pulling every single scrap of needlework stuff that I own out and putting it all in the living room to sort it out. I found the lucet in the bottom of a bag of yarn when I thought I'd put it in the tin with all my oddments. Oops. It, its instructions, and all the string I'm planning to use with it now have their very own bag to live in, and I've finally got a use for the bag. It was a freebie that was too small for any knitting projects, but I couldn't just throw it out. The reason I was looking for it was that I finally bought the sandpaper to sort the edges out and make it useable again.

While delving in the depths of my stuff, I was inspired to finish the crocheted pillow. Mostly so I could just get rid of the naked pillow form that had been lurking on top of the wardrobe. It turned out I was a lot closer to being finished that I thought, so I just got that done. And I've now met my 2 projects goal for March! Woohoo! I also found the lime green baby jacket I started ages ago, and decided to fish it out and finish it. It's so small and was going so quickly, and in fact is still going quickly. I finished the body, sewed the shoulder seams, and did half of the first sleeve. I've got it and a darning needle in my bag for the lunch hour, so hopefully that plus the pub tonight will allow me to get most of it done. I haven't brought a circular needle for the edging because picking up stitches evenly is a task that requires good light and sobriety. If I finish everything else, I shall work on the alpaca neckwarmer.

I went through my Mission:Possible stuff again this weekend too. The biggest project in the pile is the crocheted ripple afghan, so I think that's going to be the at-home priority. It's not the most complicated or the one that'll take the longest, but it needs an entire bag for all of the yarn that goes with, so it needs to go!

Other goals are making progress. I started the pair of mitts that will use up most of the green and yellow Dr Who yarn. They are looking good, although corrugated ribbing is really, really fiddly to do. They will take longer than I had hoped, but they're still fun. (Remind me I said that in a month or two when they are making me nuts.) I did a couple of rows of the silk shawl, but it's really not something I can do in company. Conversation makes me lose count, and then I screw up. And tinking silk laceweight is right up there on my list of not-fun, somewhere around the point of getting chewing gum out of hair. I can do it, but I'd really rather not. I did some more work on the Dr Who yarn mini-scarf, too, but that's obviously not something I can finish until the mitts are done. I thought about knitting the black shawl. And then I decided that on the not-fun list, it's well above the chewing gum mark. So I left it in the bag to marinade for a while longer.

I changed one of my goals, too. I told the Ravelry group, but I don't think I ever posted it here. I think I might turn the Kaalund laceweight into a very ornate Pi Shawl, which will probably take me much longer than a year. Especially since I don't want to rush it (and since truthfully? I don't want to use the yarn. It's the first really great yarn I ever bought, and I'm emotionally attached to it.). So, replacing that goal is the coatigan. When I started making it, I loved it. I loved the yarn, I loved the way it was turning out. And then I had to buy interfacing, and then buttons, and then I couldn't get the right size needles, and gradually I came to resent it. Which is silly, because it's about to be the perfect weather to wear it, I've now got everything I need, and it'll take a couple of days, tops, to knit a sleeve and a half, a collar, and finish the lapels. So my replacement goal is finishing my coatigan. I rounded up all the stuff that I need to finish it, and I think I will work on it over Easter on the days when the spouse is home and I can't work on the shawl. Maybe I'll even finish it!

And we also sat down and figured out exactly what he's going to need in the way of garb, and how much of that I'm going to be doing. It's not too bad, actually, and he's keen to learn to sew well enough to help out.

So, as you can see, sometimes making a big mess can be really helpful.

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