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sandness Sometimes, a new design comes out and it does not matter that I have a million projects on the needles, or looming deadlines. The perfect yarn is in stash, the needles are free (or I will free them).

It needs to be cast on.
This happens to me about once a year. It usually wreaks havoc in my well planned and organized knitting life. And generally, I really know I have no business casting on this new project.
sandness 1This happened to me when Wool People 5 came out. Curse you Jared Flood. Many gorgeous designs, as usual, and accessories heavy. And in the middle of all the shawls, one spoke to me. It wasn’t the runaway most popular shawl of the collection on Ravelry, but to me, it was perfection.
I had been Golluming my Malabrigo Finito in natural for the perfect, cozy shawl. It started screaming at me from its nesting place. Because the yarn totally knew it needed to be made into this shawl.
Not difficult, not lacy, not a project that can only be knit by a maestro.
But knit in a cream, round yarn, there was no fudging in knitting this thing. The construction is classic Shetland. The wave pattern in the edging had to be blocked out evenly. It appealed to the OCD part of me.
sandness 2I love the waves, but I also sigh in content as I look at the transition point from the triangular body to the edging. It’s so pretty.
I was wrapped in it for most of my time at Squam, dragging it from place to place like Linus and his blanket. It smells of the fireplace we had going in our cabin every night. I made the large size, with 1/2 a repeat omitted mostly because it was already huge (finished block size is 38.5″ deep by 79″ wide) and to ensure that I had enough yarn left over to make the hat cousin, Norby. (I haven’t made this yet….and yet another Brooklyntweed collection, from Wool People 2.)
Sometimes, you just have to do it. You know the feeling, right?
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I travel for work. It is definitely not as glamorous as it may seem — slogging around with a wheelie crammed with all my electronics while making sure all your liquids are in small enough containers that can pack into a ziplock can get old. Nalgene must somewhere have in their database that I have purchased a bazillion little bottles.

Traveling is, however, one of the best things that happens to my knitting productivity.

First of all, pockets of time where I am  seated, with no other “Thing I Should Be Doing” are very precious. On a flight? I’m trapped. I cannot be addressing errands that should be getting run, cannot be hiking/training/playing with the dogs, and there are no piles of laundry or dishes that require my attention (that I can do something about, that is). Of course, I could be Go-Go Internetting my way across the country, but I’m not that productive. So — on with the headphones, on with either podcasts or an audio book, and the needles come out.

And for the duration of the trip? (Honestly, you didn’t think I traveled on a multi-day trip with just one project, did you?) On this one, I’ve got 4 with me. 2 shawls that were both more than halfway done, and a sweater that is done in pieces that is nice to have, and a project that is completely mindless (a garter body center for a shawl, done in teeny cobweb/lace).

Four is a bit excessive. But truly, I needed them all. First of all, the 2 “more than halfway done” shawls were definitely candidates to get completed on this trip. I would of course need a mindless project for times when I was sort of sitting around (lots of meetings!), and the sweater because it’s done in pieces (so I feel like it’s a finite thing) and if I can get a piece a done per trip, then I may not notice that I’m knitting sleeves. (This deserves a separate post. It’s an affliction that is similar to second sock syndrome, but The Second Sleeve That Takes Forever is another one of my diseases).

The shawl I have really been trying to work on is Romi Hill’s Rosa Flora shawl. I’m knitting it in (I know, I know) Sanguine Gryphon Gaia Lace in a silvery grey called Owlets. It’s beaded with clear, silver lined hex beads. It’s a semi circular shawl, and drop dead gorgeous. I want to finish…not because I don’t like knitting it, but I really want to see what this shawl looks like in its full glory.

The second almost-done shawl is a test knit, so I can’t talk about it until the pattern is released. I’m knitting it in French Market Fibers mohair lace in Spanish Moss, and it really looks like spanish moss. I am considering binding it off in a dark grey for some contrast. This shawl calls for beading, but I am probably going to omit it, so I don’t take away from the fluffiness of the shawl.

The sweater is Viften/The Fan by Marianne Isager. This sweater has been in my queue for quite some time, and I thought this was work worthy….and I’m working on the 2nd of 5 pieces for this sweater. I’m using Sanguine Gryphon Bugga in Montauk Monster, which is a dark grey. (It’s a Cephalopod Yarns color now…)

The “mindless project”, which usually lives in the drawer in my office, is Quill, by Jared Flood. It really is going to be pretty, but I need to knit 270 rows of garter before the fun (lace) begins. I am ALMOST there (at which point this project will escape “mindless” status). I’m knitting this shawl out of French Market Fibers Uptown Lace, in 2 colors. I will talk about this shawl a lot more when it gets more interesting — and I am knitting this because what I really want to do is knit a fingering version, cut in half into a triangle. I figured that before I start really monkeying with a beautiful design, I should understand the original first. (I know. I have a strange mind). I think I know EXACTLY how I want the construction to go, but I may come up with more ideas as I progress with this shawl. I’ll definitely document the modification process here.

Running back to my knitting, as I really want to free up my Signature #5 needles that are in my Rosa. Because Romi has released another shawl that would be absolutely perfectly cozy for fall in a tweedy, classic yarn!!!

What’s on your needles right now?