I work from home once a week, and our heat is on a timer – it lowers the heat around 7:00 a.m. and turns it back on right before Cieara gets home from school around 2:45. And every time I work from home, I freeze my ass off. I try to remember to go downstairs and turn it back up – but I usually forget, and then get busy or caught on calls and can’t move around. Plus I always feel sort of guilty about turning it up too high – I try to see if I can’t just deal with it – better for the environment and our oil bill if I don’t turn it up, right? But it gets cold! I usually put a shawl on, but since most of mine are laceweight, I can’t say that they are very warm. So I’ve been thinking more and more about a nice warm shawl for those days. And about three weeks ago, I finally found the right pattern, the right yarn and cast on.
Pattern: Colonnade (Knitty, Fall 2009)
Yarn: Manos Del Uruguay Wool Clasica, Stellar colorway
Started: November 21, 2009
Finished: December 12, 2009
I had no idea this pattern even existed before I went looking for something – I saw this issue of Knitty when it came out, but didn’t look at this pattern – I typically look at laceweight shawls, and I have so many in my queue that I’m not looking for more. But when I decided to make a worsted weight shawl, I went into my stash and started looking around – and saw the Manos. I bought this yarn years ago to make the Landscape shawl so I pulled it out and found the pattern (which I had also bought). But this time, when I looked at the pattern and looked at the yarn I thought that they just wouldn’t go – too much varigation (and the shawl seemed like it would be a little boring to knit). So I went over to Ravelry and did a search on the yarn to see what other people made with it – and apparently this is the pattern that most people used this yarn for (at least shawl-wise). So I decided to give it a try. What a great pattern – I love it! Quick, easy but still interesting – it seemed to just fly off the needles. I’m not actually sure when I started this – I’m guessing on the date but it went pretty fast considering I’ve been doing other knitting and that my knitting time has been limited at night because of Penny (and work, Facebook, Ravelry, blogs – I really need to figure out a better balance!). Anyway, great pattern – I highly recommend it!
I loved working with this yarn. I know that there are people that don’t like Manos yarn, and compare it unfavorably to Malabrigo. I like Malabrigo, but I just love the colors of Manos – aren’t those amazing? I have to admit – I like the scratchiness of the Manos – sure Malabrigo is butter soft, but Manos is just so…wool. So scrunchy – and the thick/thin parts…so nice. I washed the shawl last night, and I think it softened it a bit – but you know this is a wool shawl. I’m not sure I’d want a sweater made of the yarn, but I think its perfect for something like this. I’m so glad I thought to use it – it felt so good to use stash yarn that I’ve had this long (I bought this in 2004!) . The shawl used a little over 3 skeins of the yarn – I actually have 2.5 skeins left of it – maybe a scarf?.
This isn’t a great picture, but I wanted to show the shape of it. This isn’t a standard triangle or rectangle – its sort of weird – but it fits so well. The pattern calls for a button closure, but I don’t think I want that – I have shawl pins I can use to close it if I want but it actually just hangs so well, I’m not sure I”ll need it. I can move around, type, talk on the phone and this won’t fall off like some shawls. In fact, it sort of looks like a sweater when its on (at least from the front). I wore it today for a bit – and it is warm, comfy and just the perfect shawl for a really cold day.
All in all, a very succesful knit – used stash yarn, it went fast, and I’m very pleased with it. And I got a needed break from all these little projects and Christmas knitting.
I took Friday off and had a really nice long weekend – lots of Christmas shopping – in fact, I’m just about done which is nice since I started the weekend without one present! We also put up our Christmas lights yesterday, and I made some cookies. Today was a little more shopping, a little wrapping and a little knitting. Oh, and another Penny training session – we’ve added Ruby to the training and its going well for both of them – I can’t believe what a difference a little positive training does to crazy dogs! All in all, a very relaxing weekend – but very productive as well. And a really good break from work. I love random long weekends, don’t you?
As I mentioned above, I’m working on the second sock for Cieara’s present. Its taking forever, and I’m hating it. But I’m just about to the heel, and am determined to finish this by next weekend so I can get it all wrapped up and ready for Christmas. I think that next year I’ll start my Christmas knitting in July so I don’t have to do so many projects together (ok, so many projects for other people!). The only good thing about Christmas knitting is that I can’t do it at home – so I have to find other projects to work on here. And since I finished the shawl last night, I had to find something to work on today. Which meant that I finally got to start something with the Madelinetosh yarn. So amazing. More on that next time!
OK, time to go – have a great week!