Decisions, decisions

I'm at loose ends this morning.

I finished a project in the wee hours of the morning (no, you can't see it yet - it's meant for another rare Friday FO) and am still basking in that self-satisfied glow that comes from being really pleased with what you've just knit.

Okay, just a sneaky peek!

Okay, just a sneaky peek!

(Personally, I think this is the 'high' that knitters chase. That smug, chuffed feeling of having turned string into something wonderful and useful and fabulous. It's our superpower! Also not to be confused with the knitters' 'high' of euphoria that comes from casting on something new, which as we all know is something else entirely...)

As thrilled as I am to be finished a project, I am completely paralyzed in terms of what to work on next for the month of March. And as we know with my WIP count, there's no end of options to choose from.

These colours remind me of those large, ornamental cabbages

These colours remind me of those large, ornamental cabbages

Option 1: Handspun and a WIP
Continuing on with the inadvertent garter stitch theme of 2015 would be returning to Rachel's latest beautiful design. I'm also conscious of the fact that I haven't knit with an SweetGeorgia in a while so this handspun in Spring Garden fits the bill. And since the shawl is already started, hopefully a WIP wouldn't take too long.

My SweetGeorgia handspun is all about gardens - this colourway is Midnight Garden

My SweetGeorgia handspun is all about gardens - this colourway is Midnight Garden

Option 2: SweetGeorgia Half-and-Half
Another SweetGeorgia and handspun option is the Lady Pearl vest. It would be a new cast on, but a perfect layering piece for the transitional weather we've been experiencing here in the UK. I'd use my SweetGeorgia handspun for the body and their Superwash DK in a complementary colour for the yoke.

Still a little more swatching to go to see if I'm on gauge

Still a little more swatching to go to see if I'm on gauge

Option 3: More Handspun
I've been itching to cast on for the Gradient Pullover and have been swatching diligently the beautiful handspun that Rachel made for me for this project. While I want plenty of time to finish it before September so I can wear it to this year's GLYC, I've also been thinking that this sweater is a great summer project for me and would work into the Yarn in the City pre-GLYC 2015 and Pop-Up Marketplace KAL that we're planning on having. (Note to self: come up with a better name for the KAL!)

Hmmm... do we think I could finish this in time to wear at the Edinburgh Yarn Fest?

Hmmm... do we think I could finish this in time to wear at the Edinburgh Yarn Fest?

Option 4: Malabrigo March
It is March after all, and I've not knit with any Malabrigo in a while. Handily, I have a WIP that was cast on in early 2013 that could potentially be a quick-ish knit. The Helix Vest by Shiri Mor has cables to really take advantage of the smooshy Malabrigo goodness, is sleeveless  and it helps with working on my WIP problem.

Do I dare try to tackle lace again?

Do I dare try to tackle lace again?

Option 5: A Different Challenge Entirely
This option fits in with being part of the Cold Sheep thread that I've joined on Ravelry. There are a  number of challenges to help keep people motivated and on the straight and narrow! The Rock Island shawl by Jared Flood is something I've been planning on knitting for AGES and there's a mini-KAL happening on the thread with this project. My hesitation here is that it would mean starting something new, I'm not sure I can knit a whole lace shawl in a month to qualify for the challenge (and I'm competitive like that!) and I'm not confident my lace skills are up to par. But, it would be using more deep stash, which would be awesome.

Help me choose won't you? Pretty please?

KCBW Day 2: A mascot project

My task for the second blog post of Knitting and Crochet Blog Week is to think of or research a project that embodies the house/animal that I identified the most with and/or that reminds me of the qualities of that house.

Dudes, this was HARD. I confess to having completely taken the challenge literally and immediately doing a search through Ravelry patterns with the single word, "bee". I thought I would want to do something with colourwork so refined my search parameters around that, knitting, for an adult, and came out with about 40+ pattern options to choose from, and none of which held any appeal.

Thinking about a bee, I'm not sure I really wanted a motif of one per se, but looking at other project images got me thinking more abstractly about bees and their stripes. From there somehow I remembered a new-to-me skirt pattern that a friend brought to my attention on Ravelry and I eagerly sought it out again: Tower of Strength by Jimenez Joseph.

Perfect mascot project for a Bee?

Perfect mascot project for a Bee?

It seems unfair to have hit upon the perfect (for me) mascot project so quickly but I do believe that it will work out amazingly well. The stripes are evocative of a bee, while the colourwork stranding is what I sought out originally yet at the same time unconventional and different enough to keep me challenged and interested through the project (and keeping a little bit of that monkey side coming through).

As luck would have it, I think I may even have the perfect yarn in my stash for this (links are to my stash pages on Ravelry):

Or not so lucky as the case may be since I was hoping that these would all be same weight. Still, with some gauge swatching and blending of the yarn and colours, it may come out all right, no? I must say, I am in love with the idea of the pale yellow/gold of the apricot mixed with the deep brown, and the pale pistachio evoking a sense of spring for a bee to be flitting about in... sigh.

Happily for this blog post we don't actually have to complete (let alone start!) the mascot project, but I must say I'm rather taken with the idea and think that I will need to revisit this pre-processed project idea once the cold months are upon us once again.

Speaking of Qiviut...

Windy Valley Muskox is having a very cool contest where they will be giving away a skein of their fabulous yarn once a week until February 29. 

Click here for details on the contest, which is pretty easy to enter.

I saw a woman knitting Liz Abinante's Traveling Woman shawl out of qiviut when I happened upon MAIWA Supply on Vancouver's Granville Island last summer. Talk about sumptuous! And she said it didn't take a lot of yarn at all. Nice suggestion for a luxe project!