So . . . . . . . . . . .

So, I’ve got something to tell you. This pretty big news, and it’ll certainly effect my life, and I hope that it will yours as well.

So, does anyone want to take a guess on what this big news is?

No, I haven’t been offered a book deal based on the content of this blog.

No, I haven’t been offered a free ride to UC Berkley, which was my first choice college, and I actually got in, but couldn’t afford to go. (One year there would be about as much as all four at Kent. So I went with the other school synomounous with anti-Vietman protestations.)

Geez, after the foregoing, my real news will seem rather small. I’ve finished The Traditional Shetland Lace Shawl.

The fact that this thing is done, really hasn’t sunk in for me either. I fixed the edge on Monday night, Wet blocked it on Tuesday, wove in the ends on Wednesday, and here I am with it done. And it’s done.

Here’s the pic of the pictures. I swear, my camera couldn’t wait till after this thing was finished to break.

Blocking picture

Blocking picture

The Corner

The Corner

The other corner shot

The other corner shot

A bit big -- even for me.

A bit big — even for me.

Specs:

Yarn: The brown and burgundy are both Shetland wool that I ripped out of some old sweaters. The white, also came out of an old sweater, but it’s half angora, and half wool, so it’s tons softer.

Pattern: The Traditional Shetland Lace Shawl, from Elizabeth Zimmermann’s Knitting Workshop. I invented the sawtooth edging, though it’s been done many times and is in most edging dictionaries — I didn’t follow any pattern. The border is a feather and fan stitch, which is now firmly imbedded in my brain. The center is all garter stitch with a few eyelet rows added for interest, mostly because I was about ready to die of boredom. (It’s amazing how a few yarn overs can really improve your outlook on life.) I put the whole thing together with a  three needle bind off, which now that’s it’s been blocked, you can’t even tell.

The shawl took about six months to knit. Yes, you read that right. I say about. Remember, there was one point I had three jobs while knitting this. (Relax, they were all part time, and only for a few weeks.) And this is the second take of this pattern — if you count the first take on this shawl, it’s been on the needles for about 15 months. I watched a lot of Downton Abbey while I knit this thing.

Blocking it was — well a work out. I haven’t done that much hard work on a bed since I ended my last relationship. I put  down a thick blanket first, so it wouldn’t get the bed all wet. I had to fold it in half, and it was still all the way at the edges on the bed. Of course, while I was pinning it, it dried out. I had to mist it, which was odd. I was raised to believe that you keep all liquids possible out of the bed. Any liquids. And here I am, irrigating the bed.

When I die, I want this thing to be my shroud.

My opus is done. It’s supposed to be a square, but I ran out of yarn on the center square, so it’s more of a rectangle. The long side is taller than I am, and the shorter side comes up to about my nose. So this thing is pretty large. (I’m six feet tall for a point of reference.)

I still can’t believe that this thing is done. Oh, I’m such a different person than when I started. I was in unrequited love, my family life was a mess, I had a shitty job, and everything was uncertain. Wait, all of those things are still true (except the job part, but the only thing worse than a shitty job is none at all). Damn. But I feel different at least. I’m a lot more of a sunny person.

But it’s done. I don’t know what I’m going to do with my life now.

(13 left to go! Two of which are close to being done, which means that I’m really close to being at less than ten. Funny, seems like yesterday I was at less than 20.)

Now it’s time for the non-knitting (mostly) other stuff. Still fun though.

I’ve become an adult. I bought a suitcase yesterday. Having my own luggage makes me feel like such an adult. Granted it’s a little suitcase and I can’t fit all my clothes in it, but it’s a start.

Last weekend I packed my yarn. I decided to do the really important things first. It was a little odd, trying to plan out my knitting months in advance, but I think I did a good job, and I didn’t even have to sit on the tote to get it closed. I’m also pretty pleased that I got it down to one tote. (I think I’ve got about five sweaters worth in there, plus a bunch of bits and bobs. )

This weekend I might pack up the books. I’m only taking a few, some really important ones that I regard as identity forming. And if I need any of the ones I didn’t take with me, I have to remember, my parents live less than an hour away.

Yesterday at the store, I found a 1oo% Merino pullover to take out (women’s XL, so I may have enough to make myself a sweater) and a man’s XL vest, half silk, half wool.  Score!

I now know exactly how much money I still need. Not as bad as I thought, but we’re talking about the difference between 8,000 and 6,000 dollars. No matter which way you slice it, it’s still a lot of money. (I still say, I am young enough and pretty enough for a prostitute.)

I had something else I wanted to say, but I can’t remember what it is. Now, off to go enjoy some of this lovely 70 degree weather. It’s not hot. It’s not cold. Ohio may have finally figured out what it’s doing.

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2 Comments

  1. Congratulations, again! The shawl looks great, at least to my untrained eye. Glad you were able to get a suitcase and make some packing progress. I definitely agree with you about the weather we’ve been having.

  2. Even though Kent State will be fun and awesome, I live 45 minutes from UC Berkeley (and am also a graduate) so that would have been super awesome. Too bad you didn’t pretend to live at my house so you could get in state tuition…oh well, graduate school plan made.

    The epic shawl is lovely and it you should be proud that you stuck to it through all the months and tribulations. It’s lovely and will be good for late night study snuggles.

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