Just me and my pins

It is a dim and dreary day here in Toronto, really too dark to take excellent pictures, which is a shame, because I finished the Peacock Feathers shawl, and my relief is just about overwhelming, since the crawl to the finish line on this one was pretty brutal. At the end of the shawl there were 495 stitches on the needle. Purling back across the wrong side rows when you’re not doing any patterning holds my attention about as well as watching tea steep, and then just when you’re ready to congratulate yourself for sticking to the knitting and finishing the thing up… you’ve got the cast off.


495 stitches, all of which have to be gathered into groups of three, joined by crochet chains. Now, many of you know of my deep personal struggle with crochet. I do it when I have to, but the loop and hook path is not one that fits for me, and it shows in my work, and in my mood while I do it. This cast off sure is pretty, but while I was making all 165 of those little loops, the work moved with all the speed of a teenager’s thoughts on separating your dedicates from towels in the laundry. I could have washed my entire kitchen floor with a toothbrush. I could have served a fried rice buffet with only tweezers as utensils. It. Was. Slow.


Hours, that took (and I made it worse by watching the news while I did it, and listening to politicians talk about the bailout may have actually made time move backwards. Has anybody else noticed that they aren’t really saying anything?) but when I finally finished it was like being given a great present. It was one of those things that went on for so long that when you’re finally finished you’re almost surprised when it’s finally over? Just when you’ve accepted that you’re going to be doing a crochet cast off for the rest of your life and have resigned yourself to that being the total scope of your existence and not fighting it at all anymore… suddenly there are no more stitches on the needle and the work just sits there being all done.


I’m so happy I could eat it. It’s finished, and this shawl is two things. Beautiful, and HUGE.

I have no idea where I’m going to block it…or where I’m going to find 165 pins for all those loops.

Maybe if I move the table…

I wonder what I should knit now? I need something to take on tour. I’m thinking more lace, although I’m also pretty interested in scarves right now, having noticed while I was in Europe that this whole accessory thing might be part of the reason that they all are wearing outfits and I am only wearing clothes. Maybe lace scarf? Suggestions?

I’ll be upstairs with all my pins.

(PS. Many thanks to those of you who emailed Joe and I with congratulations. It is indeed two years today since we “formalized our arrangement” and it’s still nothing short of wonderful, although he does have a disturbingly laissez faire attitude about where the dishes go in the cupboards, but today is hardly the day to dwell on that. Happy Anniversary Honey.)