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Please begin with an informative title:

What Are You Working On:  our weekly gathering for all things handmade, homemade, crafted, DIY, created.  We're flexible.  

I have a few things from around the tubes to share, and updates to my Lenten project, described in my previous WAYWO.  

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Daughter, in her newer, better, fuller pioneer skirt.  I must love her a lot for letting her use that beatiful Northcott-Monarch fabric from Jennifer Wheeling's Victorian collection.  ;-)

Intro

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What Are You Working On
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Stuff I Found Laying Around The Tubes

I follow some moms on twitter.  Many of them are knitting, or writers.  And they follow other moms.  This one is very very creative.
 I especially loved this post from this week:  She's A Brick House And I Painted Her.  Later in the week she blogged about guinea pigs.  

Peacefully Knitting is new to me this week, and I have not fully explored anything here.  I am highly intrigued.

New York Times notices wool.    How clever of them ;-)  

The colors whiz down the walls in a stream of primary shades: red, yellow, green, blue.

This acoustic, sound-absorbing column seems just the answer for noisy restaurants or hotel lobbies. High tech? No, 100 percent felted wool.

What you can do with the combings from a sheep’s back is the subject of a fascinating display of jazzy carpets, sofas dressed in pinstriped suiting, chairs covered in recycled Aran cable cardigans — and a replica of the white bespoke trouser suit that Bianca Jagger wore to her 1971 wedding.

Someone somewhere in my twitter tweeted a darling project using Washi Tape to make a cute necklace.  However, I closed the page and could not find it again.  Apparently this stuff is a new magic craft item.  Here's some ideas.  I think it needs to be sealed or it will wear off quickly.  Has anyone here used this?  Is it fussy?  

Enabling

Right after Lent started, daughter asked for a new skirt, even though I wasn't making things for other people.  Okay, I have done some mending.  Anyway, I cut and pressed, and she sewed:
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Her brother was very supportive.  Next, I may try letting her cut with scissors, not with a rotary cutter.  The pressing is more risky - she could iron the fabric, and I could press the narrow fold-overs.  

I declare this project a complete success.  Here is a closeup of the fullness.IMG_3224


My Projects

1.  Pink Twisty Cowl:  FINISHED!
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Goes well with pajamas.  Thanks to kirbybruno for the original item she knitted for me, and the Twist Your Neckwarmer pattern link.

I highly recommend this pattern.  It's fast.  It's easy.  It looks great.  And it's magic - you knit and knit, and it looks boring in its straight columns, and as soon as you bind off, it "sproings" into a twisty pattern.  
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2.  Blue Lace Cowl
This had some issues.  As you can see in the older photos
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the project is very crowded on the needles.  There are 143 lace-weight stitches on a 16" needle normally used for baby hats.  Plus, with the metal needles, the alpaca-silk blend was anxious to leap off into the unknown.  I kept dropping stitches, particularly when I set the piece down.  It was also very difficult to count stitches, as they were so very crowded.  I picked up a lot of them, but it took its toll.  At the 1/3 mark, I decided I had enough.  

I went into my lovely local yarn store (LYS) for a consult.  After trying out a few different circular needles, I chose the addi natura in 24 inches.  So far so good.  I am a bit concerned about the lack of killer-pointyness on the natura needles, but this is not a very complicated pattern.  The yarn is much calmer and better behaved.  And it is staying on the needles, where of course, it belongs.  

Then I ripped out the old project and re-wound the yarn.  This was a bit complicated, the alpaca seemed kind of grabby.  I used my well-developed patience and got it done, and now it fits in my yarn mug.  I re-knitted the first 4 rows and have set the project aside for right now.  

3.  The Giant Shawl
IMG_3197
This is a bigger piece, and my shoulders have been stiff.  It has 3 colors on each row right now, and it has thousands of rows to completion.  Okay, hundreds.  Okay, maybe several dozen rows of 92 stitches.  I obviously need a better attitude.  And more flexible shoulders.  

4.  The New Project
I was frustrated with the Blue Lace Cowl.  I finished my Lenten reading several days early.  I felt kind of like doing something new and crazy.  One of my favorite designers, Sarah Wilson, aka The Sexy Knitter is hosting a Knit-Along (KAL) with her new shawl pattern.  I resisted it mightily January 1.  I continued to resist it throughout January and February.  Then I cracked this week.  I acquired the pattern, using her coupon code for a discount.  I tossed through my stash (remember, no new yarn) for possibilities.
IMG_3261
The cats were very excited by this stage.  After examining labels, calculating comparative inches per weight, reading reviews, double and triple checking the pattern, I came up with a winner:
Kollage Luscious in Berry
IMG_3245

I chose my knitpicks harmony birch needles, for their long cable, pointy-ness, and calming effect.  Even though the yarn is cotton/nylon, I am a bit worried.  The yarn has a surprising drape.  It is a bit heavier than the pattern details, but I think it will be nice for mountain evenings in the summer.  And I love that I can re-purpose this yarn from another project gone bad.  
IMG_3260
Solstice Shawl uses 2 Barbara Walker lace patterns and has a nice stabilizing cable down the center back.

I immediately cast-on before I could change my mind, using Judy's Magic Cast-On.  I looked at the Knitty.com description, and the Cat Bordhi video, to refresh my memory.  I have no clue how to actually start a sock with this cast-on (its original purpose) (for a toe-up sock).  However, I'm getting very good at starting top-down shawls with it ;-)  I thank Susan Lawrence, who teaches at Blazing Needles, for teaching this technique.  When I grow up as a lace knitter, I am going to knit her Progression shawl.  Again.  

IMG_3248

The next day I knitted through section one.  I am now 1/3 through section two, and I want to put a lifeline in before any more knitting.  It is going well.  The section two uses a 6-row lace repeat and an 8-row cable repeat.  However, they do not start at the same spot, because the cable is started in section 1.  In order to keep my brain together, I made a simple spreadsheet.  Column one is row number, 1 to 73 (12 repeats plus one extra row).  Column 2 is the lace row number (1 through 6, repeating) and Column 3 is the cable row (1 through 8).  I am also counting at the end of every six rows, to make sure I am making even progress from 40 stitches to 196? stitches at the end of the section.  

My cat photobombed my knitting photoshoot:
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First, she sneaks in to the close-up.

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Then, a total takeover.  

5.  The CarryAround Project
The legwarmers are coming along, slowly.  This is my carry around project right now, since I have decided to not carry the lace projects along, and the big shawl is too heavy and complicated.  

IMG_3218
I have ripped this project out too - it's the mood I'm in recently, apparently.  I originally made some increases after the first round to make sure the "small/medium" pattern would work on my not so small legs.  However, when I tried them on carefully, they were huge!  I started over sticking to the original pattern.  The rib, even though twisting, is still very very stretchy.  The Lamb's Wool is very warm.  I am considering making the second one in the opposite spiral.  Like I would ever wear these in public, where anyone could see ;-)

I also steamed and ate my first artichokes and made a soup kind of like this one.

What Are You Working On?  
Crossposted in purple.  Available for other crossposting with acknowledgement, please inquire.
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