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Tuesday, July 17, 2012

A Love Letter To The LYS

I was fortunate to get out of the humidity outside and the crazy young children inside my home this past weekend and collapse in one of the comfy chairs at Yarns Etc. 

There is something about walking in through the swinging glass door.  Every time, I find myself inhaling and exhaling deeply the moment my foot crosses the threshold.  Probably getting a much needed, concentrated dose of wool fumes.  My eyes take in the square footage stocked with cubbies full of many different types of fibers in hundreds, thousands of hues. 

What I like so much about the place is that it is jam packed with potential.  I find myself wondering how many projects could be cast on with all that lovely yarn.  I am an avid reader, and when I was a kid I used to daydream about getting "accidentally" locked in the library overnight.  Lately I find myself daydreaming about such a happy accident happening to me but maybe somewhere a bit more fiber-y. 

Why, I just didn't know what to do, so I just...cast on...a little something.

This time I watched the knitters come and go.  I saw how many of them were as tactile with the yarn as I am.  Going to the yarn store for me is a lot like a kid going to Chuck E Cheez.  It's not just the colors and how they look.  It's touching them.  Giving them a squeeze, and I was pleased to note that I am not the only one who sort of...cuddles...the yarn against her cheek when she finds a really good one.  Seeing what newcomers are in the baskets around the shop.  What new colors have arrived in the good old standby yarns like Plymouth Encore and Cascade 220 and Rowan, oh my, Rowan, among many many others (like Berroco, Malabrigo, Blue Sky, Elsebeth Lavold, and Three Waters Yarn, just to name a few more).   

Some of you have some fierce willpower, folks.  I was impressed by the whopping two knitters who were able to shake off the grip of some gorgeous yarn, declaring they couldn't get it just yet because they already were working on a project.  I tried to be subtle about picking my jaw up off the floor.  A project. 

A project?  Singular????  Like, only one?  Wha?

That was me.  Except without the suit. 

There was plenty of hustle and bustle, too.  You knitters were not letting the warm weather slow you down.  You know it's going to wind down soon.  The crisp winds of autumn will arrive, and your needles are already clicking away on knits for cooler weather.  I watched two knitters laugh when they realized that they each had fallen in love with the same pattern, but will be knitting it in two different yarns. 

In other knitting news, I'm still trucking away on my Twenty Ten Cardigan.  I am still loving it, but I feel like I need a miner's headlamp in order to properly be able to see what I'm doing while I'm knitting it in the black Cascade Yarns Eco + wool.  Moss stitch is really pretty simple, but with the black yarn, I've done a double take or two, since the purl and knit stitches look awfully similar in it.  Maybe next time in yellow?

As for my Elizabeth Zimmermann sweater, I had been toying with a V-neck and three quarter sleeves.  I have decided to keep the three quarter sleeves idea, but I can't wrap my mind around how to do the decreases for the shoulders, make the V-neck while on a circular needle, and keep the whole thing from gapping ever so unattractively or, conversely, having an accidental V-neck that would get me arrested for public indecency.  Instead, I'm going for raglan decreases and a crew neck from The Opinionated Knitter.  I'm not quite done, but the sleeves are attached and the decreases have been started.

Just imagine this all joined up and slightly larger and you have it. 
 I think I'll finish it up today (knock on wood, throw salt, and burn ceremonial sage as a nod to the capricious whims of the Knitting Muses).  And after that?  Who knows!  Perhaps another trip to the yarn store?

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