Spring has its own momentum and direction … growth, very much forward! The pear tree in the back garden has sprouted fuzzy buds, daffodils and crocuses are scattered about in neighbors’ tree wells, and babies have appeared everywhere in the city, in cloth carriers, prams, carseats and carriages. It’s amazing what a couple of days above 50 will do for the morale and foliage of a mid-Atlantic city.
Now that the tea cozy is done, I’ve had my eye on other corners of the house, where UFOs continue to languish. Some are lined up for a final push before the warm weather. First tackled was my younger son’s Cobblestone Pullover, which came off the needles (a second time) a week ago; he’s happy as can be with it, which makes it worth the effort (both times).
My older son’s graduation from university is approaching, so I’ve leapt into the work of his projects: the binding on his Monkey Wrench quilt is finally done, – this was supposed to be completed for him to take to university after his high school graduation (!!), so these final stitches were especially satisfying. Always game to indulge his preference for monkeys, I’ve finally started his “graduation sock monkeys” – a pair of felted sock monkey clogs he’s been asking for for a few years now. I tested mixing cream and brown Cascade 220 on a pair of baby moccasins (the Little Turtle Knits pattern is now available in 100 Knitting Projects; the booties are on their way to the Pine Ridge Reservation collection), and located some marled brown worsted (Dune Twist) from KnitPicks. Using the Fibertrends felted clogs pattern (I can’t even count how many of these I’ve made in the past four years), these clogs are inspired by a pair of sock monkey scuffs he saw online. Perhaps most importantly (since graduation is in early May), they are flying off the needles in the evening; one clog is knitted, the second in progress. I grin with each stitch, just thinking of how tickled he’ll be when he finally gets these. And there will be enough time to make another pair if these don’t work out, or if his brother claims them first.
Last Friday was both Purim and Knit for Peace Day. This felted fortune cookie pattern was converted to use for a felted Hamentaschen cookie, and I used every spare minute to work on a few more variations of the TikkunTree cabled co-existence leaves (more information here).
There’s been some progress on a few of the walking projects: I’ve finished the second hank on the cabled rib scarf, deeply pleased with the subtle undulating waves produced by the alternating cables and ribbing. I started this project to improve my left hand Continental technique, and really feel as if I have the hang of it at this point; there’s nothing like the repetition of K1, P1 ribbing to perfect control of either technique (English-American “throwing” or Continental “picking”). With confidence in the left hand, I’m also working another brioche beret, using only Continental techniques. This is the third of Nancy Marchant’s Ying Yang Beret I’ll have made this season, again with contrasting skeins of Noro Silk Garden, and equally enjoyable to work on.
Unfortunately, it’s nearly impossible to avoid starting a new project whenever I manage to finish a few others. So, with a sister’s 50th birthday coming in a month or so, I’ve finally made a start on a shawl for her. My sister has a glorious waterfront view of the Atlantic coast from the back of her little house, and I’d hoped to work the seascape into her shawl, by using either the Morning Surf pattern’s horizontal drop stitch, or a similar vertical drop-stitch lozenge design. She doesn’t wear wool, and wanted something a bit more durable than silk. So I’m using the last three hanks of hand-dyed rayon boucle I have from Mystical Creations Yarns (before the business shut down). It’s a gentle combination of cream, gray, green and burgundy, that produces gentle zigs and zags according to the disposition of the alternating sets of decreases in the Stormwater pattern (either SSK’s or K2tog’s) that came with a hank of SeaSilk I used last year for a similar scarf for my mother.