Thursday, September 07, 2006

Like a Chinese laundry

Ever wonder where phrases come from? Like "don't throw the baby out with the bathwater," "look before you leap," and so on. Some we know, and others, perhaps those passed down by parents are just a mystery. Some of my mother's favorites were "I'm going to slap you up to a peak and knock the peak off" (sounds awful doesn't it?) or "this room is a piggy-assed mess." For today's discussion however I am going to focus on this one; ".......looks like a Chinese laundry." Where my Mom came up with that, I have no idea, but as I was ducking under the drying alpaca hanging in the hallway yesterday, and then rounding the corner into the kitchen, that is the precise phrase that came to mind. This is the alpaca batt I have been spinning up. I've temporarily looped it over my cupboard doors until I have it all spun up and ready to wash, something that should be accomplished this morning. I wish I would have remembered to take a picture of the silver gray alpaca in the hallway---I actually startled myself the other morning, rounding the corner too quickly and forgetting it was there. I took it down last night, it's still gorgeous and I'm still impressed with myself :) Ellen asked what I was going to knit with it, and here's what I'm thinking; This is the Spartan Pullover from the fall 2006 issue of Interweave Knits, and up to now the ONLY sweater Brad has expressed interest in---which is reason enough to knit it, I think. The yarn I've spun is about sport weight (so says the band of merry spinners/knitters) and I'm hoping that I can order some sport weight alpaca from KnitPicks (black or charcoal) and use my handspun as the contrasting color for this sweater. Of course the yarns will be a bit different, but the fact that I'm actually using yarn I made should negate any downside, don't you think? Spinning enough for a whole sweater seems a bit beyond my reach, but it seems utterly stupid to spin yarn only to let it languish in the stash because there is only 400 yards. I think this sweater might be just the thing to showcase it. Any opinions??? I did a little knitting yesterday, the baby kimono is coming along (in fits and starts), and I got another couple pattern repeats done on the sock while out for coffee with Eva. I'm thinking of actually taking my mental list of what I want to knit, and getting it on paper (in in the computer) so as to keep myself somewhat on task. During the last contest, someone said the way they keep track of "want to knits" is to put the pattern with it's chosen yarn into big ziplock bags, and then into pretty baskets on a shelf. I think that's a marvelous idea, but I have neither the baskets nor the shelf space, unless I put them away in a closet, and that would defeat the purpose; out of sight, out of mind, don't you know. I think it is true of every knitter (quilter, crocheter, spinner, beader???) that it doesn't take much to lure us away from our goals. The pattern we love today, the one that we just must knit, can be easily pushed to the background with a simple trip to the yarn store, by what someone else is working on, or with the next magazine that comes in the post. My friend Anne, faced with a fast approaching spinning/knitting deadline (8 more days Anne dear), started 5 new projects in the last 10 days. Must be a new record. (ya'll should drop by her blog and give her some encouragement). With that thought, I'd better get the rest of this alpaca spun up----and order some more yarn :)


At 9/07/2006 01:51:00 PM, Blogger Crazy Colorado Knitter said...

i started my "spartan sweater" last night.

woohoo! :D

At 9/08/2006 09:21:00 AM, Blogger Cathy said...

Sounds like a plan with the knitpicks and your handspun. Nice sweater - good taste (as usual) Brad!

At 9/09/2006 06:16:00 AM, Anonymous ADELE said...

On keeping track of patterns and yarn, this might be an idea. Take a picture of both yarn and pattern, together if possible, and slip into a clear sleeve and put in a notebook. The nice thing is you can date it, make notes of what you like about the pattern, etc. Then, when or if you make it you can add a picture of the finished project.

I really enjoy your blog and pictures. Thanks. I've visited your area and loved it, and have very nice pix and memories of the Garden of the Gods with it's amazing red rocks.

At 9/09/2006 01:34:00 PM, Blogger Chris said...

I think that sounds like a great idea, using your yarn as the contrast - it will make that sweater especially special. That is going to be a WARM sweater, all from alpaca.


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