December 10, 2009

Thar she blows

Every once in a while in my knitting career, I run across a project that takes hold of me in an unreasonable way.  When it happens, it's like a food jag in a two year old.  The same way that all they want is cheerios for two weeks, all I want is whatever project it is that's triggered the reflex.  It happened with the Felted clogs. (We will not discuss how many pairs of those I have knit. More than thirty for sure. I'm pretty sure I had the pattern memorized for a while. I could probably still manage a pair without the pattern if there was some sort of clog emergency.)  It happened for a while with Latvian Mittens . (That was probably about 10 pairs.. but at least there was a little variety.) It happened with the Tulip Baby Sweater. (Pretty sure there were four of those before I got a hold of myself, and even now when I see the kits at Lettuce Knit I feel a little dizzy and weak- which makes no sense at all, because it's not like I don't have two kits in the stash in case I really need to knit one of those sweaters and the store is closed or doesn't have one.) It happened - most recently, with those Noro 1x1 rib scarves.  That was a bad one. I think I powered through four or five of those (a couple with matching hats) before whatever it was ran its course, and last night when I was at Lettuce I bent down to look at some other yarn that just happened to be near the Noro Silk Garden- and Rachel H practically staged an intervention. 

Usually, there is no warning.  Usually - I knit one of whateveritis and while I'm knitting it I think something casual, something like "this is a really good and fun project. I am enjoying it tremendously" and then I think "I really love this" and then usually someone else, usually a non-knitter, says "that's really beautiful" or "Wow, what a great scarf" or "Seriously you knit that?" and then the combination of internal satisfaction and external validation hits me like a ton of bricks and then next thing you know I'm back at the yarnshop with enough yarn to make five more of whatever it is, or worse yet... I have Joe driving around the city trying to procure all of it before other people get my yarn.  This is the pattern, and I know that I am helpless in the face of it.  I never know when it will strike, and I am usually pretty surprised when it does. I've usually got a pretty short attention span for a pattern, so  if something gets a hold of me like that, there is no point in resisting. Resistance is futile.  Destiny has waved a wand over me and I will knit that one thing until I have wrung all the charm from it.  (And sometimes longer.)

I don't know if what I am about to say means that I'm experiencing personal growth or not, but for the first time ever - I see one of these knitting jags coming. This time, I know it without even knitting a stitch.  Three things happened that triggered it, and I even know what they were.

1. Megan knit Andrea a pair for her birthday a few weeks ago, and the minute that Andrea saw them she came unglued with glee and put them on with her sexy little black dress.. right in the restaurant.

2. All the knitters and the regular people in the restaurant said they were awesome. 

3. Megan says you can knit the whole project, beginning to end in 90 minutes, and because they're felted, you don't even need to knit them well.

90 minutes?  90?  As in, one and one half hours?  Only 5400 SECONDS? Are you kidding me?  There's two weeks before Christmas  somebody dangles a chic, quick, cheap knitted thing in front of me and thinks I won't go off?  Who can resist that?  You would need to be made of stone, I tell you, stone.  I feel like this is going to rescue Christmas, make my house cleaner and possibly contribute to world peace.  I've cast on for a pair of them, and I don't know when it will stop and with street cred like 90 minutes, who cares?   I have 9 skeins of Cascade 220 and I'm calling that "a start". I think this one's going to be bad. 
I give you The French Press Felted Slippers.   Try to resist them. (Apparently that link isn't working for some. Here's a Ravelry link, and here's a link to Melynda's blog which has a "buy now" button on the right sidebar. Try to resist them now that you can actually get them. Ha.)

Gifts for knitters day 10:
Since today I'm talking about felting (sort of) I thought I'd mention these nifty things.  They're awesome for knitters who like to felt or even knitters who like to wash their handknits.  They're these zippered laundry bags , and I don't know what the manufactuer intends them to be for, but what they really are is a way to avoid clogging up the pump on your washing machine.  If you're going to felt something you whack it in there before you toss it in the washer, and it keeps all the loose fibres from drifting into the pump where they mass into an incriminating clump and cost you (in my experience) about $300 and some marital strife.  (Pump prices may vary, as does the degree of marital strife.)  They're also pretty slick for handwashing knits of all kinds, but particularly lace, since it protects the knitted thing from stretching out of shape when you lift it out of the water.  They're great, and the finer the mesh the better.  A couple of those in a stocking with some feltable wool would make you look like a rockstar.

PS.  I always feel awkward mentioning this sort of thing, especially since I'm about to bore the snot out of the lot of you by knitting nothing but slippers for who knows how long... but this blog has been nominated to be nominated (I know. It's a process) in a couple of categories for the Canadian Blog Awards. If you were so inclined, you could vote for whatever blog suits you (there's some really good ones besides this one) in the categories of Best Overall and Crafts, Cooking and Other Activities (I know. What a name.) Thanks guys.

Posted by Stephanie at December 10, 2009 3:42 PM