Have I Been Brainwashed?
The babies were returned to the shelter on schedule Saturday morning. This made their Mommy and Uncle DH sad, but not horribly so. We know they’ll be adopted quickly when they reach the cattery as they are adorable and sweet and there are not so many baby kittens at the moment. I’m not allowing myself to watch the shelter’s website obsessively to see if they’re listed – only twice a day. Since I suspect it’s not updated hourly or anything.<g> There will be pictures forthcoming, I promise. Cause these were terminally cute babies!
In the meantime, I have to report that I have succumbed. I have bowed to the inevitable. For knitters, I only have to say one word: Clapotis.
For my saner readers, let me explain. Just about two years ago, an online knitting magazine called knitty published a pattern for a scarf/shawl/knitted item of some sort. It took the online knitting world by storm. Soon there were knit-alongs organized to knit it. (A knit-along is a group of people all knitting the same thing, generally knitting a few specified rows every day. It’s more fun than that sounds.) There was a Clapotis team for the Knitting Olympics. People have literally knitted a dozen or more of these things.
I couldn’t understand why. I looked at the picture and saw a young French woman wearing a scarf. I have enough scarves and wasn’t inspired by the picture. But, if you scroll down, you’ll see it can be worn as a shawl, too. I *don’t* have enough shawls, as evidenced by the fact that I had to reuse several of them when I changed characters in Spoon River Anthology. (Yeah, that’s what I want to run my life by – the two nights of the performance of a play which, by the way, is already over with! However.)
Still, I wasn’t hooked. Till I actually read the pattern and realized that the odd-looking part of the pattern is where you actually get to deliberately drop stitches. What a clever, perverse sort of thing to put in a pattern! So somewhere in my subconscious, a murmur started. It might be fun to do a Clapotis.
Oh, it took months to convince me. And it’s been a couple of months since then that I’ve been trying to decide on the perfect yarn. It is illegal, I believe, to use the yarn and/or colorway used in a pattern. Besides, while I suspect Lorna’s Laces Lion and Lamb (a wool/silk blend) is yummy and goodness knows Lorna’s Laces has some lovely colors, it would cost $120, plus shipping and handling, to get enough yarn.
So I joined an email list about the Clapotis and asked in various places about the right yarn. One thing you don’t want to use is mohair – mohair is very sticky to itself and dropping stitches would be a bit tricky. Other yarns suggested (Noro anything) would have the same problem. Finally somebody said they’d made one from Patons SWS, a yarn that is a wool/soy blend, which has the benefit of being sold at Michaels and being pretty darn cheap. So I looked at her picture. What I really liked about it was how the stripes in the yarn were sort of opposite the stripes created by dropping the stitches. So I looked at the yarn online – a couple of colorways looked good to me. Especially the Natural Denim. I wear mostly denim in what we here in Texas call “not summer”.
On Saturday, after we took the babies to the shelter, DH and I made a daring daylight raid on Borders Books (where I again graciously left a few books for other people) and on Michaels, down the way. I got 9 skeins of Natural Denim Patons SWS yarn.
I cast on on Sunday. (Before that I had to finish the wedding presents, which I did. I was literally unpinning them from the blocking board Sunday morning, but they were finished!) I love a pattern that starts out “cast on 2”. Not 60 or 64, like for a sock, or several hundred like you might expect for a shawl, but 2.
I’ve printed out my own copy of the pattern, but I don’t have to consult it all that often at this point. I’m in Section 2, the Increase Rows, on the sixth repeat. The pattern calls for seven repeats. At that point I’ll see if I think it’s wide enough – I may want to add a repeat.
Normally I’m not big on following fads, even knitting fads. But I think I’m going to like this. The pattern is actually pretty simple and easy to memorize so far, which is a good thing, and the only stitch approaching difficulty is a “purl through the front and back loops”. It took me a bit to figure that out, but I did. So far, everything is going well and fairly quickly.
Turns out the Natural Denim colorway doesn’t really stripe the way some of the other colorways of Patons SWS do, but that’s OK. I like it anyway. I can see doing several of these things in different yarns and colorways. Maybe even in the Lorna’s Laces pricey Lion and Lamb, at some point.
Does this mean I’ve been brainwashed?