Between my birthday, St. Patrick's Day, my parents' visit, doctors appointments, taxes, our wedding anniversary and easter, it feels like there's a lot going on around here, and that doesn't even include now-past in-the-news drama involving our former governor, a crane and a large investment bank. What a couple of weeks it has been though! And after my big push on the skirt I really haven't been able to spend nearly as much time knitting, something I am having to come to terms with because really, a normal functioning life would unfortunately be pretty much impossible with that much knitting!
I did manage to get started on my Mountain Sky Clapotis though. I found some useful tips at Needles and Hooks and knit up a swatch first, which was very helpful in getting to understand the pattern and trying out a few techniques. I decided I didn't like purling instead of using stitch markers because it interrupts and slows my knitting down too much... but I'm running out of small stitch markers and the large ones are a little annoying on #3 needles and fingering weight yarn. I may have to order more...! Also, I am twisting the stitches on either side of the dropped stitch on the purl side as well as the knit side. I'm not bothering with mirroring the twists though, as that seemed like altogether too much trouble, and I liked my swatch just fine how it was.
Right now I'm still on the increase section. I've done all the increases in the pattern and am doing a few more to get a wider piece. Not sure yet how many more I will do. The swatch was rather boring and tedious to knit, I think in part because one expects instant gratification from a swatch and is also impatient because it's not the real thing, but I'm enjoying the actual piece. The increases do make it more interesting of course.
I've also been doing a lot more fantasy knitting ie thinking about things I want to knit. I went on a bit of a yarn splurge for my birthday (more on that when it arrives) and I'm also trying to figure out what to knit my mother-in-law. I want to knit her a lace stole, and I found the perfect lace weight yarn on sale at One Planet, except they only had one skein left (it was Lanas Puras Melosa in Lace Weight). I probably could figure something out that only uses 900 yards but... I'm not sure. I don't want it to be too small. And of course now that I have it in my head that I want to use this yarn, I'm having a hard time finding anything else that will do. I'm thinking of knitting the Hanging Garden Stole. There are many pretty ones on ravelry. Non-ravelry links to my favorites are here, here and here. Oh yeah and here. It's so overwhelming though because of course there are, like, a million beautiful lace stole patterns and a million beautiful lace or fingering weight yarns. I think that rather than doing comprehensive research (there's a whole bunch here that I haven't had a chance to look at) and trying to pick out the best, I'm going to have to pick something and go. Maybe I'll swatch for the Hanging Garden Stole with the Melosa and see how big a stole I will end up with. I'm not really too hopeful though.
In non-knitting news, we did our taxes today and get this - we get a much bigger return if we file separately rather than jointly. Kind of a strange wedding anniversary present but, well, we'll take it.
And then we went shopping! Do you ever feel like you want to take pictures of clothes than you buy as though they were FOs?!!! Well, I have to admit that I bought a knitted item. Here it is (I bought it in natural). I've been wanted to knit something like this (eg Flicca) but that's kind of a big project that I won't get to for a little while and this was really cute... plus now I have it, I could always knit a copy for myself in another color.
It's funny, since knitting, I've been spending a lot more time looking at and thinking about articles of clothing than I ever have before. I've never been big into clothes... but I'm really kind of fed up with a lot of my wardrobe, and I think knitting is loosening me up a little. For example, look at the shirt I bought, and actually, I have to say, I think it looks a little weird on the model in the photo, but I liked how it looked on me. Hopefully I wasn't in that clothes shopping haze of optimism that can occur where one ends up buying things one wouldn't normally wear!
Anyway, it's a good thing I had a gift certificate because add a couple of pants into the mix and this was not a cheap trip! This was a gift certificate from my husband's work that I've had for over a year though so it was good to finally spend it (and not our tax return)...