Tag: Malabrigo Lace

kira makes a sad discovery… and a triumphant recovery

It’s been a long while since I have updated the blog. Life has been busy. I’ve been surprisingly social, which (while being enjoyable) has severely cut down on my personal time and time for making things.

I’ve been trucking away on the Mirkwood Shawl at the weekly Twisted Stitchers RVA craftnights, and in the few evenings I have to myself. Everything had been going along relatively smoothly, with the potential for actually finishing it in time to wear to the wedding a not-too-far-off possibility. Until…

Mirkwood - Eaten

… one of the cats ate multiple holes in it. I am fairly certain it was Árnyék; he likes to gnaw on the red blanket on the bed and probably found it to be similar. As you can see from the picture, there’s still kitten-spit on it. *sadface*

On the bright side, all of the three holes that I found were relatively close to the working side. After recovering from the shock-and-horror, I bravely removed the entire shawl from the needle and unraveled it, picking out the beads as I went, until I got to the base of the holes (which apparently was all the way back to when I switched skeins of yarn).

Mirkwood - Unraveled

And then — picked up 379 stitches like a BOSS.

In a stroke of luck, the row I picked up had the distinctive double-YOs, allowing me to more easily figure out what row I’m now on (Chart 2, row 79). And each segments’ stitch count matches what it should be. Woot.

This means that I lost 30 rows… and since each row takes foreeeeeever (like at least good 20 min per RS row) that means I lost only like, 10 hours of my LIFE. Plus the probably-around-2-hours it took to carefully unravel and pick-up stitches. Jeez.

It is much more unlikely that I will finish this in time to wear for the wedding as I am now having to backtrack… Le sigh. So, I’ll have to figure out something else to wear.

But, I get to be all proud of myself for fearlessly taking several hundred stitches off the needles, dismantling, and picking up stitches — LACE stitches — without doubting my skills to actually do it. Because I am awesome. And I can do things if I put my mind to it. I will finish this shawl and be victorious. (I really hope it blocks well, since it seems to be turning out fairly small… eek.)


kira makes more Mirkwood

Mirkwood 07.2015 02

I’d rather be knitting.

Making progress on Mirkwood. Slow going, as the stitch number increases. But thoroughly enjoying knitting it.

Mirkwood 07.2015 01

I am fast closing in on the end of Chart 1. I’ve gotten my system down for keeping track of all the lace charts. It’s not nearly as difficult as it had initially seemed it would be. I occasionally consider adding lifelines, but so far, I haven’t had many issues where I need to undo the work. When I do run into a problem — finding one stitch more or less per the segment — I am able to easily find where I need to fix it in the previous rows and correct it. Since the whole shawl is broken down into smaller charts, it’s actually easier for me to keep track of it. I think perhaps when I get to the flaming pinecones section, I may consider adding a lifeline.

But for now, making good progress, and finally with pictures.


kira makes the start of Mirkwood

Mirkwood - Beginning

I caved and cast on for Mirkwood. I knit about 13 rows at craft night, before having to pause because I didn’t have any of my beads with me. Later that night, I knit to about row 31, before realizing that I had just been purling the entire WS rows, instead of knit-the-knits, purl-the-purls. Plus, I didn’t really care for the bead that I was using — in the pattern, there are special “tree” beads used occasionally throughout the pattern (in addition to the seed beads); I had tried using tiny metal star shaped beads, but they were not laying in an attractive way, because of hole placement and how they are added to the pattern.

So, I decided to frog the whole thing and start over.

When I woke up in the wee hours of the morning, due to insomnia, I had the brilliant idea of getting up and working more on the shawl. Which, of course, lead to me not going back to bed again! But I did get back to the point where I had gotten before, so overall progress. This time, I am using a spherical shiny gunmetal-grey bead for the accent beads. They are a little large/heavy, but I think they will work.

Mirkwood - Bead Options

For the main seed beads, I couldn’t decide what color to use, so I ended up ordering all the color options. This was actually a good idea, since several of them looked very different from their online appearance. I have ultimately decided to go with the transparent grey bead — it appears to catch the light the most, as well as having a hint of the color through the bead. The transparent ruby beads don’t really complement the yarn’s shade of red, and the opaque black, while pretty, don’t seem as sparkly as the grey.

Now that I’ve started Mirkwood, I’m itching to go back home to work on it more! Boo having to work…


kira makes another mistake

This time an actual problem.

I loaded the hank of Malabrigo Lace onto my yarn swift, and used my ball-winder to wind the hank into a center-pull yarn cake. Not so much of a problem so far.

But then, I attempted to use the yarn cake as a center-pull… which is where I ran into a big snag. The fine laceweight yarn caught and snagged on itself, and in pulling it, snapped the yarn. Attempting to find the end again, I managed to make a 400+ yard knot-bundle. Oops…

yarn tangle

After spending a while, with a lot of patience, I managed to unknot the entire skein, but now it’s split into smaller balls, as the yarn snapped a couple more times in the unknotting process. Oh well. Luckily, it was technically the extra skein I ordered, so not too much of a concern.

I think this was a lesson I learned the last time I worked with laceweight yarn, but had forgotten. It doesn’t seem like laceweight yarn likes being used as a center-pull. Now will hopefully remember this for the future!


kira makes the mistake of opening package at work

Malibrigo Lace - Pagoda

My yarn for Mirkwood has arrived!

I made the “mistake” of opening my package at work (I couldn’t wait!), and… *swoons*

The Malabrigo Lace is so lovely and soft and prettiful. I can’t stop petting it. Very distracting at work. I’m glad I got the extra skein, just in case. I probably could have done without the extra skein, but now I just get more opportunity to use/have/wear this lovely yarn. Hooray!

My beads also arrived yesterday. I’m actually glad that I ordered all of the colors I was considering, since the colors are significantly different from what was displayed on-screen (especially the frosted opaque jet). Which I totally understand, but glad that I gave myself some wiggle-room for making the decision based on the actual colors. Now that the yarn has arrived, I will be able to test how all the true colors complement each other.

Nerdy excited yarn ramble.

Now I’m anxious to get started on the Mirkwood Shawl. Part of me feels like I should wait until I finish one of my current WiPs, but… what’s the fun in that?


kira makes poor decisions…

…because YARN!

It was really just shifting next month’s “hobbies” budget to now. Since there was only just enough of the yarn in the color I wanted at the online shop, and I didn’t want them to run out.

And then, I needed to also get beads! I couldn’t decide what color to get… so I got all my choices to see what they actually look like with the yarn. Since, I can always use more beads. 😉

The bead choices are opaque oxblood, transparent ruby, transparent grey, opaque frosted jet, and opaque jet.

Bead Options

I really like the oxblood beads but not entirely sure how well they actually complement the yarn. Same with the ruby — however, these are transparent, so they may appear darker with the yarn inside and work better. The transparent grey also will have the yarn color show through and add a nice glint. The opaque frosted jet is an interesting choice, because they are matte and a unique color; definitely a different feel for beads. And the opaque jet would definitely work, and add a little shine.

I guess we’ll see when I have all these happy new purchases in my little hands. Another girl in my knitting group showed off the progress she’s making on her Mirkwood shawl; I’m very excited to start my own! Speaking of knitting group, we were supposed to knit outside in the park today, but it is rainy. So, coffeeshop it is!


kira makes twitchy fingers

Malabrigo Lace -- Pagoda

Currently trying to resist temptation.

I think I have found the yarn I want to use to make the Mirkwood shawl. Malabrigo Lace, in Pagoda — a deep dark shade of red. (Although looking at some of the stashed photos on Ravelry, it looks like there is a fair bit of variation in tone.)

The online shop has just enough in stock in the right color… Trying to decide if I can shift next month’s “hobbies” budget to now, since I don’t want them to get sold out. (All of this month’s “spare” money went towards kittens.)

*twitchy fingers*

Not like I don’t already have enough projects going on at once… Currently still working on the Les Misérables wrap, the Featherweight Cardigan, and my Fleegle Heel Socks. The Les Mis wrap may actually be long enough to consider binding off (I have 2 more balls of yarn; trying to decide whether to just knit until I run out of yarn, or go by the pattern’s length recommendation). I’m making decent progress on the Featherweight Cardigan, specifically at craft nights. And, I’m technically on the second sock of the Fleegle Heel socks, about to make the gusset and heel. Soooo… I’m kind of in a place where I could theoretically finish some projects soon, and can add another project into the mix. Maybe…

But now, researching pet insurance like a “responsible adult”… boo, adulting.