Last week, at almost the very last possible moment, I signed up for the Mystery Stole 3 Knitalong. How it works: You sign up for a Yahoo group. Every week (for six weeks, I think) the designer posts a portion of a pattern for a lace stole. Just knit along with the pattern, and at the end you will have a completed lace stole.
The first obstacle was that the designer specified that the stole would look best in black or white. I don't have any black or white lace weight yarn on hand. I ordered some charcoal Lane Borgosesia Baruffa from the Loopy Ewe, and natural Bare from KnitPicks. Sheri got the charcoal yarn here in record time, so it won the right to move on to the swatching step.
Here's a tip. Don't swatch lace at Stitch 'n' Bitch, especially if the gang is chatty. This is perhaps the most error-ridden swatch in history, but man, did I have a good time knitting it.
Go ahead. Laugh. God knows I did. There should be six neat little arrows like the one at the upper right. No matter. The point was to see if there was enough variation between the yarn-over holes and the plain knitting - and there is.
Step 2, and my second moment of folly, was beads. Beads are optional, but I thought, "What the heck? As long as I am trying new things, I may as well go for broke." So I headed out to a bead store. I know nothing about beads, but I found the 8/0s, and picked one that looked nice with the swatch.
The pattern recommends adding the beads as you go, rather than threading the yarn ahead of time. That requires a teeny crochet hook that will go through the bead. A size 11 slips through the bead, and just barely holds onto the lace yarn.
Finally, today, I started the actual knitting. This is the first 20 rows.
There's still quite a ways to go. The test knit blocked out to 80 inches long. This is about 2 inches.
T and I went through some of the antiques in the hutch today. Katie helped.
For her efforts, she is getting to spend the night with her cat sitter, or as she thinks of it, Kitty's Worst Nightmare. It's not really because of this. Our bathroom remodeling starts tomorrow, and we thought she would be too stressed out by having strangers in the house making noise all day. Going to Mia's house stresses her out, too, but she's been there often enough to know where the good hiding places are.