Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Season's Greetings...

... or Bah Humbug, whichever you prefer.

Thanksgiving was last week, here in the US, which means the Christmas season is in full swing. Technically, the season starts on Black Friday, which is marked by major sales and insane crowds (use the word "insane" as a modifier or a descriptor, either will work), although the past couple years retailers have been pushing the envelope a bit. The mall nearest where I live started decorating for Christmas and playing Christmas carols starting in October.

Now, that's a bit much. As much as  love Christmas, I shouldn't be pushed to my "bah humbug" limit before Thanksgiving.


In my last post, I complained a bit about deadlines, and how I hated them I regret to say that the orange and yellow balls of Cascade 220 remain untouched. I have a more pressing deadline to make.





This is what is in front of me. A quilt, approximately the size of me. That I am quilting myself. Originally, I had the bright idea of making this quilt reversible, however my quilting instructor inadvertently changed the needle position, so the second quilt top ended up much larger than the first. Rather than try to fiddle with borders to create two quilts of the same size, I decided to simply make two quilts, and give one of them (the more masculine of the two) to my brother as a housewarming gift.

I am probably about 50% done with the quilting. I am ready to throw my machine out the window. Moving day is Sunday.

Guess what's probably not going to get done by deadline?


Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Deadline

What is it about deadlines that makes me knit slower? In college, deadlines just made me type faster (and actually, I did better with them looming over me like some monster from a cheesy horror movie) but with knitting, quite the opposite.

I'm sure many of you know what I'm talking about, with Christmas on the horizon, and for those of us who need to ensure that the post office gets our brightly colored packages to their destinations in time, the deadline is far before December 25th.

So what do I do with a ball of yellow and a ball of orange Cascade 220 that has a pre- December 25th deadline that just does not want to be knit? What do I do with the quilt that has a deadline of December 1st, because it is a housewarming present for someone moving in to his first condo on the 2nd, but just wants to sit there. The top is pieced, the backing and batting bought, it's just a matter of putting it all together.

Every January, I say I will not do Christmas knitting this year. I say I can't, it's not worth the stress, the aggrivation, the hurt when the finished object is ultimately tossed aside like yesterday's newspaper.

Then like clockwork, every October, I go into a tizzy looking for the perfect yarn for the perfect pattern for some dear friend. Or I get some crazy, last minute idea of how best to show my love for this person because my words are usually lacking.

Ugh.

I hate deadlines.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Challenge

Like most of us, I have a mound of Christmas knitting in front of me. I just finished the last dishcloth of my list- and I felt my brain go numb from the miles of garter stitch that I had just completed. It's been awhile since I've challenged myself with my knitting. I think the last project I did that really challenged me to push myself further was the Autism Scarf I made for my aunt last year.

So, despite all the Christmas project (which is thankfully coming along nicely), I cast on a project that, not only is it for me, but it challenges me as a knitter.

Pomegranate.



I've only ever knit one doily pattern successfully,  and that was a much smaller, much less complicated one- only a few inches in diameter, using sport weight yarn. Pomegranate allegedly comes to about 6.5 feet, and uses thread weight and size ones.

This might take me awhile, but it'll be worth it. Knitting itself is an act of love, pouring ourselves into every stitch, but one that takes this much concentration and time and effort... I consider myself a process knitter, but the end result, especially one this complicated, makes it worth it.

I'm sure before I'm done- LONG before I'm done, I'll have frogged it several times (I've already frogged it once), consumed a lot of alcohol and chocolate and have sworn very loudly and quite often.

And I'll chronicle every moment of it of it.