Thursday, June 30, 2005

Birch Begins

For the Summer of Lace KAL, I'm working on a mini Birch. Here's a peep at the WIP. She's destined to be a sartorial superheroine on the streets of Gotham City, thus the dramatic flair (?) of her pose echoes a certain movie.

Photo of Birch shawl in progress

The mini Birch is intended to be a large scarf rather than a full-sized shawl, which I find to be the more versatile size for adding a bit of warmth and color to an outfit. So I cast on a mere 199 stitches instead of the full 299. I'm working the st st version to show off those yos.

There are advantages and disadvantages to working a triangular scarf top down. On the one hand, the number of stitches is decreasing rapidly, so apparent progress is ever-accelerating. That's remarkably gratifying.

On the other hand, top down knitting requires full commitment. There can be no stopping short as the work is an ungainly trapezoid until the very last sl1, k2tog, psso of the very last pattern repeat, which completes the triangle. There's no turning back either. I'm pretty sure frogging mohair lace is mentioned as one of the torments of the damned in Dante's Inferno. Lasciate ogne speranza, voi ch'intrate! Abandon all hope, ye who enter here!

The yarn, Filatura di Crosa College, is a beauteous four-strand blend of fine wool and mohair with colorful Polyamid nubs, rescued from the sale room at Seaport Yarn. Wouldn't you know it - I'm not sure I have enough to finish. I did a lot of abstruse calculations and I think I can, I think I can.

The cast-on edge and the sides of the triangle are scalloping slightly, which is a charming effect. However, that means the work is pulling in and puffing up, obscuring the openness of the fern lace, which is not so charming. Blocking very likely will flatten the puffs but also greatly reduce the scallops. To block or not to block? That is the question to be decided later.

The Rowan pattern may be found here. Mason-Dixon Knitting gives helpful advice and Duc Ta's excellent chart here.

Roundabout Exit 151, the upcoming holiday weekend is full of celebrations of liberty, civic responsibility, and neighborliness. Everyone decorates their house with red, white, and blue! On Friday, July 1, the county is sponsoring a concert in Brookdale Park by the NJ Symphony Orchestra, followed by a spectacular fireworks display. On Monday, July 4, the various townships hold their individual parades and more modest fireworks displays. Here's some scenes from last year's parade: the Fire Department and their shiny trucks, a local advocacy group, and a fabulous rainbow marching band.

Photo of July 4 parade fabulous band   Photo of July 4 parade CeaseFireNJ   Photo of July 4 parade Fire Dept

In between Friday and Monday there are block parties and pool parties and barbecues. There's fresh sweet corn and early tomatoes and mint tea and lawn chairs and peace and plenty. My favorite holiday.

I hope your weekend is joyous and safe and full of fun family time and good things. Have a happy Fourth!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hi there! Hope you have a wonderful 4th of July! Your package shipped out today. I hope you enjoy its content :)

Talk to you soon,

Your SP.