What's SPA? It's a small spot of paradise in the midst of a New England winter. Knitters, spinners, crocheters, tatting-ers, all of us fiber fanatics, are invited to Portland, Maine, on Saturday, February 17th, and thereabouts, to hang out.
Let me repeat that.
We get to hang out together.
I need that. I need more fiberous hanging-out. Thus, when the temperature here dropped to below zero Fahrenheit and I've had a very cranky week and I get an email from the New England Textile Arts crew saying, yep, y'all come hang out, you hear - well, I responded. I forwarded the email to Sue - yes, the same Sue that endured me and Rhinebeck together in Rhinebeck - and said, Sue, dearest, darling, sugarplum, would you drag me there? (Since she has family in Portland, family who knit, family who are welcoming and charming and have extra beds.) Sue rose to the challenge. We're going! Wahoo!
Which brings me to the point: I need something to wear to SPA. Something I've knit. Something that looks good and is suitable for a coastal New England city in February. You know. Something to show off to other knitters.
Surprisingly, I have nothing. I have no hand-knit socks. I have several handknit coats, but you can't wear those inside. I don't have any handknit shawls, not that are finished, anyway. My scarves - meh. The sweaters - well, let's just say I'm not good at forseeing how things will look on me. I'm sure that you all will be very kind and tell me I look great in fuzzy purple mohair with horizontal striping, but you really shouldn't lie like that.
So I need to knit something new. Something stunning. Something from my stash, something that flatters me, something I want to knit.
Somnething I want to knit so much, I can finish it in three weeks. [Hah!]
Remember the Knitting Olympics? I failed miserably. I prepared assiduously - I swatched, I plotted, I bought yarn, I cast on as the torch was lit. Yet I forgot the most important part: I didn't care for the entrelac I signed up for. It was fiddly. Annoying. Even worse - boring. I quit about three days into the process.
But this time will be different.! [More hah!] This time I shall succeed! [This time I really am nuts!]
Thus, I give you the challenge: Celtic Dreams, by Beth Brown-Reinsel.
Yep, I'm really nuts.
Now, I've had a hankering this week to knit something from Tahki's Donegal Tweed. I happen to have two bags of this yarn in my stash, in a bright blue and a gray blue. I chose the bright blue.
In my table of stashed yarn, I had noted three patterns that would work with this yarn. I chose Celtic Dreams.
So I balled up the yarn.I circled the right numbers on my photocopy of the pattern.
I swatched. I figured out that I need to knit about 70 yards a day for three weeks straight starting tomorrow - about 2.7 balls a week - to finish on time. And I cast on for the first saddle shoulder strip.
Wish me luck. Lots of luck.