Monday, September 8, 2008
Those Lazy Days of Summer ... and Fall ... and Winter ... and Spring ...
I remember going to Girl Scout camp in the summer when I was in grade school and junior high. It was like being in another world for two weeks, with different food, different rules, life mostly out-of-doors, sleeping in cabins or under the stars, mosquito bites and dirty hair and cold showers once a week. New tribes of friends formed. We had girl-crushes on counselors.
I was allowed to take the family's Kodak Instamatic camera to camp. It was newfangled; the flash was built right in and you didn't have to carry flashbulbs (those somewhat-scary bulbs you plugged in with a cuplike reflector behind, and when the bulb went off -- which it didn't always, some of them being "duds" -- there was a loud "pop!" and you stood blinking with bright blue spots before your eyes.
Then there was the wait while you sent your film off to Brown Photo in a special envelope. A week or two later, your black-and-white pictures would arrive (color wasn't widely available yet, and was expensive) along with the negatives. You'd open the packet with a mixture of excitement and anxiety. Would they be good? Or would you have 12 or 24 or 36 pictures of your thumb or the inside of your duffel bag?
Now, of course, we have instant access to photos. Digital cameras let us see our shots immediately, and we can print them at home. So there should be no reason why photos are not readily available, right?
Ah, but you would be underestimating my laziness if you agreed with that. I would have been blogging so much more if only I could rouse myself from my stupor and open up the camera, pull out the memory card, put it in the card reader, plug the card reader into my computer, and upload the photos.
The moon must be in a beneficial phase, because I took these pictures (above) and then proceeded straight to the computer and did the do.
The project is called Parrot House, and it's from Lavish Lace by Carol Rasmussen Noble and Cheryl Potter ... sort of. There is what I believe to be an error in the pattern, and there's a bit I didn't like, so I changed it a little. But it's essentially the same big scarf / wrap. I'm doing it in Araucania Nature Wool Chunky, which I love. It's springy and meaty and easy to knit with. I'm enjoying knitting the project immensely, now that I've got past the difficulties in the pattern. The pattern is fairly easy to memorize, too, so it's good TV knitting.
Overall, I'm not pleased with the book Lavish Lace. The first project I knit from the book, Frost Flowers, had multiple pattern errors. I had to write to Martingale Press twice to report all the errors I found. Now, as I said, in Parrot House, there was also an error. Though I've gone back to the Martingale website multiple times, there are no more errata posted. It makes me reluctant to knit any more designs from this book without demanding a proofreader's fee.
Also, because the projects are lace done in variegated yarns, they seem to work best not only in the specific yarn and colorway photographed, but in some cases, in a particular Potluck dye lot which can never be found again. (The authors are the creative team behind Cherry Tree Hill yarns, and the projects are designed in these yarns.) It's very difficult to find the exact yarn that will work for a given project. There is much discussion in the book about how the yarns and colorways were chosen for the designs, but it only serves to convince me that it's best to stick to those exact yarns / colors.
I nearly drove myself to the Nut House (not the Parrot House) finding yarn that would work for this project. The scarf in the book was done in a Potluck (i.e. one-of-a-kind) Worsted Six-Pack. Every Worsted Six-Pack I considered would have been too busy for this cabled lace pattern. (In fact, I'm not sure I even like the one they chose for the book). The Araucania Nature Wool Chunky is working well, but not until I scoured my LYS and the Internet to get enough hanks in the correct color, which, of course, seems now to have been discontinued or at any rate seems to be unavailable.
That is my rant for today. Now I'm going to sink back into my couch like the true Potato that I am and knit. (Ahhhh ...)