Don’t Start With Me

Yeah, that’s right.  I totally said I was going to knit nephew sweaters and this isn’t a nephew sweater at all.

(Pattern: Guernsey Garden Cowl. I couldn’t find it online – it was a gift in our retreat goody bags last time.) 

Wanna make something out of it?  It’s my knitting, and I can do what I want and besides it was just a tiny lace cowl and what’s your issue? It took like – two days and it’s just a little lace and you know what? I’m only human.   I know that I’ve been hanging around with yarn for a long time and you’d think that would give me some immunity – but for crying out loud, it was Eos, dyed in a Gradiance colourway. There’s nobody that can resist that. Four little skeins dyed in a row?  It was interesting, and what’s wrong with doing something interesting anyway – it’s good for your brain. Helps prevent dementia, and you don’t want me to get dementia, do you?

Yeah, that’s it.  It was the responsible thing to do – it wasn’t fun…it was an investment in my health, but you know what? What if I did accidentally have a little fun while I was investing in my well being.  What’s wrong with that? Eh? You got a problem with fun?  You some kind of buzz-kill out to make sure knitters only make nephew sweaters?  Is that your scene? Is it?  I bet you’re one of those knitters who only has one project at a time and always finishes birthday presents before the birthday, and never slips on a little lace pattern totally by accident while trying to take care of their brain and then asks me where the yarn came from (The Unique Sheep) like you’re totally not going to order it yourself and not knit any nephew sweaters at all either. 

I know your kind. 

114 thoughts on “Don’t Start With Me

  1. Such a pretty “slip.”
    You’ll have fun knitting the nephews’ sweaters, too, when you get to them. 🙂

  2. That looks lovely 🙂 I always like yarns dyed in gradients, the flow of colour is always amazing.

  3. Beautiful.
    So! the nephew sweater was supposed to be next, beautiful lace is going to make your eyes go all swimmy and mix up the order of your to do list. It’s not at all your fault that the natural reaction when your eyes see something so pretty, is to squint until that list jiggles itself up so you see what you want to see. Besides how are supposed to knit nephew sweaters with a cold neck. x

  4. I moved this weekend. I labeled one of my stash boxes “Guilt Box”–years and years of UFOs, mostly gifts.
    So there is absolutely nothing wrong with whipping out a little cowl and even though I have two babies, two soon-to-be-babies, and a toddler I’m supposed to be knitting for maybe I will just make something for ME for a change tonight!
    Besides, LOOK at that gradation.

  5. My wholehearted monogamy in my marriage is balanced by my wanton polyamory in my knitting (if you don’t have more than one you’re doing it wrong!)
    Lovely cowl.

  6. Hey, I can’t fault it. You’re not knitting on a deadline on those sweaters, right? It’s not like they’re… Christmas presents, are they? They’re “just because” presents and, as such, you can have a slip here and there.
    And now your neck will be nice and warm while you knit those sweaters… unless you slip again into something else. But hey, you’re not knitting on a deadline, right? So, it’s ok. Right?

  7. I have tried but I can NOT come up with anything better than Presbytera. And by the way who got your knickers in a knot.

  8. Only 2 projects at a time? What is this world coming to? I have easily 4 or so things going at once. Sometimes counter productive, but variety IS the spice of life! I still have gifts to make, money to make and sanity to keep. Mine comes from the thing I WANT to make vs the things that I should.

  9. Lordy, I love what can be done with that Estonian star stitch. It pops up in all sorts of surprising places and never fails to stun the heck out of me.
    Gorgeous cowl, and gorgeous yarn; I used some awhile back for an Aeolian.

  10. What Nephew Sweaters?? This cowl is gorgeous!!
    I have to share my current project progress. I’m making shawls… multiple.. I have 2 on needles and I need to finish one so I can get the needles back because I have the other shawl on the same size needles… I can’t justify buying a 3rd set of needles to have another unfinished shawl (and hiding that from my husband) so what did I do? I started a pair of socks. Sigh.

  11. Uh, it’s O.K. Steph. Whatever you want to knit is fine with me. Just fine. No need to get excited. I’ll just stand a little farther back while you make your point so no one gets hurt. By the way, the cowl is great and I loove the color. And if you want to knit more of them (or socks or mittens or heck, a whole afghan) before going on to nephew sweaters then you just do it. You won’t hear me complain.

  12. What’s the big idea exposing vulnerable knitters to a link like that? You know full well we have very low tolerance to lovely colors . . . now I have to find a new source of income for my yarn budget — thanks a lot! (Did you see “Tudor”? And “Goddess Gold and Silver”? And, and, and I’m really upset with you right now. I have to go . . . shop.)

  13. I’m just sorry you can’t post the pattern here or somewhere online- I’ve got nieces’ sweaters that I’m not knitting and this would be a great little ‘slip’ while I try to get them on the needles.

  14. one knit item at a time -check, presents on time – check still working on the flawless laacey thing:-)

  15. Just lovely. Love the colors, the lace, the design. And why not? You won’t forget the nephews!

  16. My mom’s birthday shawl this year was wrapped still on the needles, she wore it with the needles on her birthday. She totally understood, she’s a knitter too. It was done one week later 🙂

  17. Avast ye scurvy scum! Ye dare to palaver in such a manner on International Talk Like A Pirate Day? Ye had better be prepared to back up your swagger with some righteous pirate speak, a sharpened stick, and a glint in your eye or a trip to Davey Jones locker awaits ye. AAAAAARRRRRRRGGGGGHHHHHH!
    Ye do know what a pirate’s favorite sock is, don’t ye? Arrrrrrgyle!

  18. This is why I don’t announce my “to do” list out loud. That way nobody knows when I switch projects or get completely won over by something new!

  19. Therrre arrren’t any knitting police (as farrr as I know)…so you arrre frrree to knit what strrrikes yerrr fancy, when it strrrikes it, methinks! And Happy “Talk like a Pirrrate” day!

  20. I don’t remember any mention of nephew sweaters. I just see an adorable cowl that I now want to knit. I’d call you evil, but really I know it is that we are all just human.

  21. Gorgeous cowl!! Love it!!! Steph, have you maybe had a little too much coffee???? uh, just asking……

  22. Oh My!
    That’s my design 🙂
    Laura and Kelly asked me to whip something up to go with their little mini skein set – so glad you liked it – it looks wonderful 🙂

  23. Have you been taking Excuse lessons from your girls? Sounds like a teenager trying to justify why they have to stay out later. LOL
    Beautiful cowl.

  24. I have been forcing myself to finish a pair of socks for my husband before I allow myself to start my Craftsy lace class. I keep fondling the Merino/silk for the lace shawl… 8 more rows to go! Did I mention the wool I have been pushing aside which is for the promised replacement blanket for my grandson? Life is like that sometimes. I too have hopes of avoiding dementia. Some days it appears to be working better than others…

  25. I’m right there with you. I made myself a sweater last week instead of working on hubby’s socks.

  26. I’m knitting socks for my dad’s birthday, which was August 26. They’re the Gentleman’s Fancy Socks from Nancy Bush’s Knitting Vintage Socks. However, I had a fun little accident, slipped and fell into a leaf edging for a little hat I’m knitting to go with a baby sweater. I absolutely cannot resist knitted leaves. I love the variagated colour on the cowl,and now I have an idea for my next venture into Kool-Aid dyeing. By the way, this whole knitting thing is keeping me sane in my current jobless state. If not for sticks and string,and sock patterns and knitted leaves, I might be a crazy woman by now.

  27. I’m going to Boston in less than a month. I work full time and have very little free time during the week (I can’t even fit in knitting at lunch time). Somehow I’m talking myself into making a sweet little cowl to keep my neck warm and go with the new coat I’ve had to buy. Even though I’ve got blanket squares to embroider by Saturday for a group project and 3 or 4 more hats to make before Christmas (I take 2-3 weeks per hat).
    You are not helping.

  28. I meant to also say how much I love your model’s earring, which is a perfect match for the cowl. Well done.

  29. I haz some beautiz from Eos, I want to knitz but i iz too in luvs, so I keep buying more yarnz and casting ons more projects, just so I don’t use my eOs; I iz cunning this ways.
    Luvs your cowl

  30. I’ve had so many “slips” the past several weeks, I don’t know where to begin listing them! Hmmmm, it could be contagious…..slip-itis! LOL…

  31. You slip on a little lace cowl (very, very pretty by the way). I worry about slipping on elevators. I know I should be really, really careful ’cause it could lay me up for a while…

  32. Don’t look at me! I had to rustle through a bunch of WIPs to find some US7 DPNs to make I-cord ties for baby shower hat #3 due on Saturday. I’d have to sew up at least one more needle roll if all my needles were empty of projects. Silly. I’ll finish the hat, yes, I will, but I’ll also cast on a skinny little purse-stitch scarf with the single skein of pretty I bought last Saturday. Can you say “jump the queue”?
    Luscious cowl.

  33. Living in a glass house full of WIPs as I do, I’m not throwing any rocks your way! My mother just gave me her and grandma’s collection of needles – DOZENS of pairs and circs. There’ll be no looking back! 🙂

  34. As Lisa says. “But mum, all the other kids don’t have to be in till 2:00 am.” I have several projects like that myself.

  35. Argh! Me thinks ye be entitled to be lookin’ afterr yer health! And if me had der time er der money er even der yarrrn, me be knitting it as well!
    Argh me matey! Post der treasure (translation: patern) so that me may have it taken away and burried on a desert island for a future time. Argh!

  36. Two days?! Wow, that’s some speedy lace ya got there. If I could knit as fast as you, I’d knit everything my little heart desired. Aaah what a world that would be!

  37. You are not alone and may you be absolved from all guilt my dear – I have EIGHT projects that need finishing and I still stopped to cast-on for a zig zag cowl using leftovers from my Koigu PPM stash!

  38. Hmmm. Defensive. Very interesting.
    I suspect Mr. Guilt dropped by and gave you a hard time about the cowl. Well, tell him to shove off and take his criticism to people who need it more, like members of the Syrian government, or the publisher of the French magazine Closer (and her paparazzi), or even a certain rich presidential candidate who appears to have completely lost touch with reality (if he was ever in touch with it). Mr. Guilt has no business bothering a highly productive knitter when there are so many other people who most urgently need his services.

  39. You wouldn’t be the Yarn Harlot if you were any different than you are! Can’t wait to see what projects “seduce” you next…

  40. I can totally sympathize. Just slipped and started what will no doubt be a series of Moebius scarves, shawls, blankets whatever until the obsession burns itself out.

  41. What’s life but a series of detours anyway? So many people are so driven by their “goals” they often don’t even realize when they’ve reached them, and then what.

  42. Mmmm, I am a cerebral knitter – I think a lot about what I will knit.
    There haven’t been any ‘nephew(great nephew) sweaters’ come off my needles in the last 6 months either, but it isn’t for want of thinking about them, just knitted other things – started some socks, a wingspan, started some fingerless mitts, touched/fondled lots of yarn and had multiple thoughts about some scarves with lovely fingeringweight that I have in stash, wound some yarn cakes, done some swatching that didn’t escalate to starting a project with them, and looked at Ravelry for many hours. It’s all fun.

  43. To Judy – it is not so. At least judging by the pricing info on the website – . You pay 35 dollars for 4oz SET of yarn or 50 dollars for 6oz SET. You can also select single SKEINS (4 or 6 oz each) of the solid colour for slightly cheaper price. The skeins in sets must be tiny though 😀

  44. I have nothing to say about you and your slip except I’m going to go and find that pattern and make a similar slip.

  45. First off, what does the comment at 9:41 pm Sept. 19, 2012 have to do with knitting?
    Stephanie, Whoa! I am going to assume this was meant to be tongue-in-cheek. I am the last person to judge where the Muses will lead somebody. So long as the Muses visit, it’s all good in my book!

  46. The trick is to never commit to knitting anything you don’t want, nay, *need* to knit. The other trick is never, ever, set a finish date for anything. At least that way all the various projects languishing in the knitting basket are things you want to work on, at some point or another.
    Gotta love the addition to the Unique Sheep home page. They’ve got your number, all right.

  47. YH: No, we don’t want you to come down with dementia. However, we know damn well you can get a little demented at times.
    Therefore, to echo and enlarge upon Presbytera’s comment:

  48. If it makes you feel better, I meant to be working on a silky lace shawl in a colorway that makes me sigh, and I slipped on a practical brown wool vest for my 14 year old sister.
    The universe remains in balance. 😀

  49. Ummm, I think that is the same cowl I was showing off to you when you were out in California in July. Somehow though, mine is not finished yet! Could be because of the three shawls and a mobius I have done in between. Time to get back to the last little bit, it’s those darn nups that get me down. Since we both have the same color gradient, I can see just exactly what I have been missing. Back to it!
    Looking forward to seeing what you come up with for the nephews. It will have to be pretty darn spectacular to live up to Marlowe’s lovely dress.

  50. Oh my, I think it’s a very good thing that pattern isn’t available online at this very moment! I have a nephew sweater, 4 shawls, two pairs of socks, and a couple of other things already on the needles and needing completion. So glad you scratched that “lace itch” for all of us. 🙂

  51. Oh, come on, we know you will knit that nephews sweater and all other kinds of useful things, not that a lace cowl is not useful in any way. While tennis for an hour or training on the bike is healthy for the body (unless you get injured) it only leaves sweaty clothes and body, both to be washed asap and maybe a quarter of an hour feeling good afterwards. A thing of beauty, like the cowl, is a joy for ever. So your sidestep to knitting the cowl with all its frustrations and happy feelings at the endresult must have given you loads of energy and eagerness to knit other, but not so frilly, things, like nephew sweaters or even proofed and timehonoured socks after your own pattern in boring darkgrey. Go for it, Stephanie, knitting should always be about joy, not a task (like at school, with clumsy, damp cotton 56 years ago). I like that cowl, I have the perfect yarn for it and I am a Ravelry member, now jogling with time a little…

  52. Damn it! I have been trying to keep away from you and your blog for months! That’s all I hear about from my friend Barb and then she sent me the “nephew thingie” you did the other day and I popped onto her blog and there you were right under “blogs I follow”!!! Seriously Stephanie – you are me – only in quilting!!! Could be knitting too, but I AM DISCIPLINED!!!! (shouting to myself) The yarn is hidden away and shall stay that way….however, I admit, you (and my friend Barb) could probably entice me! I mean she has me knitting a pair of sock for heaven’s sakes – like I have nothing else to do! You – keep up the good work – K.A.D.D. and Q.A.D.D. are so alike it’s scary!!!!

  53. I don’t even like to knit lace and I want to knit that. You’ve done it again Steph.
    I note that Presbytera mentions the Gansey…how many YEARS ago did I bet you that you would finish by Christmas???? Perhaps this year????

  54. The real crime here is that the pattern isn’t available and I can’t avoid my obligatory knitting too! 🙂

  55. I still have 4 1/2 hug monster bodies to knit then go back and do the arms in an assembly line, plus 2 more kids Christmas gifts and last night I wanted to start a baby hooded cowl. Only reason I didn’t slip is that the teething crankybutt woke up. I’m ignoring the fact that Aurora’s grandma is finishing a hooded cardigan for her and that we have a couple light jackets already.
    I might bribe myself with a slip tonight, knit a section of monster and then I can knit fun stuff. The monster is easy I’m just bored with it.

  56. I can’t talk – my partner’s been waiting for his hat to be finished since January, I have a lovely half of an aran vest that looks at me longingly every so often, I have finished one sock that I started in February and hopefully the second sock will be finished by Christmas, meanwhile my hexipuffs have been a little neglected, but hey I’ve been getting some sewing stuff done lately! *cough* gansey *cough*

  57. LoL…. You’re so awesome! And now, since you couldn’t find the pattern online, I might just waste this entire day that I was supposed to spend doing work in charting out something with those glorious knit flower stitches for myself. I LOVE those things!
    Oh, and I’m supposed to be knitting new SONS’ sweaters. So I might be worse than you. ^_~

  58. Ooh, flowers and lattice and nupps, oh my! I didn’t know I needed a cowl, but it appears that I do. Thanks to all who found the pattern.

  59. Pretty 🙂 Hope it keeps your neck warm while your poor nephews are freezing because they have NO NEW SWEATERS.
    Yeah, we all knew I was going to go there 😉 My Rhinebeck sweater? Not even close to being done. So I can’t judge 😉

  60. I certainly can’t talk. I slipped on Sunday and started knitting me own handspun. Before I’d even finished that, I slipped on Tuesday with the Ovate shawl.

  61. It’s not my place to comment if the nephews of the Yarn Harlot wear store-bought, machine-knit sweaters or fleece.
    As a young child, I got Mom’s hand-knits. My brother’s all were store-bought.

  62. And besides, your nephews aren’t going to stop being your nephews. So it’s not like you have to hurry up and do their sweaters before they’re not your nephews anymore. I mean, they’re not going to sit you down for a serious talk and say, “Auntie Steph, we’ve had a good run and you’ve knit us some killer stuff. But about this lapse where you knit yourself a lacy cowl instead of doing what you SHOULD have been doing, i.e. knitting sweaters for us. It’s really the end of the road, sweetie. We’re just going to have to turn in our nephew badges and part ways. We wish you the best but you’re done.”
    Not going to happen.

  63. It’s a niece sweater and no I don’t have any idea when it’ll be done.
    Are you happy now? Now that I’m looking at lace patterns again? I’m a man, I don’t even wear lace.
    But my niece might look cute in it…hm.

  64. It looks absolutely lovely. No judgment here. Nephew sweaters can wait. (BTW: The dress for Marlowe was so delightful. That one’s going in the heirloom box for sure once she’s finally outgrown it, I’m sure!)

  65. Oh dear, Nancy gave us the PDF download details and yarn availability. Bad girl! There go the three shawls I am working on. Nevertheless, I eagerly await pre-Christmas week blog wherein Steph is frantically knitting socks, hats and NEPHEW sweaters at the last minute of all last minutes (just like last year and the year before!)

  66. No sassiness from me. I love all that you knit, the nephew sweaters will come, I’m certain.

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