The State of the Blanket
March 30, 2006
Honey I’m ho-ome!
Of course I’m going to blog in luxurious sens-u-round about my fab time in England, with particular emphasis on: A Boy and His Dune Buggy Disguised As An Electric Wheelchair, clothes-shopping with Trinny and Susannah’s main competition (aka Polly and Belinda) (“cinch it!” “nip it!” “tie something in front of it!”–these were just a few of the helpful (no sarcasm!) tips about jacket features to deal with what we are calling “the tummy issue”), tea with knitpals at Liberty’s (2 words: clotted cream) and last but only chronologically so, the wonderful cupcake-encrusted event at Loop (Patsy and Johnny on the hi fi–need I say MORE?).
Not only was my Anglophilia not cured last week, it is now a raging, full-blown, incurable case. I use the word ‘dodgy’ 12 times an hour. I declare my intention to visit the ‘loo’, and more specifically to ‘have a wee’. I am researching great-grandfather Thomas Gardiner in the hopes of persuading the Home Office that I’m still a British subject. (Current theory: he intended to go back.)
But this will all be recounted in mind-numbing detail in another post. Today, I’m posting about one thing and one thing only: Did I finish the blanket in time to make Belinda cough up 250 grams (see? I’m all metricky now!) of home-bleached denim yarn? (For those who do not check our comments every 5 minutes as I do, blogless Belinda smacked me with a handknit glove and challenged me to make good on my goal of finishing all 12 blocks of the No-Sew Mitered Square Blanket while in England and France for 2 weeks.)
Well, no. I did not finish all 12 squares. But in my defense, (a) I had to come home early, (2) I had to come home early and (iii) I didn’t stay away as long as I had planned to stay, losing 4 days of knitting squares for this blanket.
Here’s the play-by-play.
Leaving London. Not a great deal of progress, despite knitting on public transportation, the train to and from Emma’s, and every spare minute. There just weren’t a lot of spare minutes.
I couldn’t resist an Atmospheric Shot. Isn’t my London Bedroom nice? Note the denimy twill curtains.
Oh, the bedspread? You want to know about the bedspread? It’s the gigant-o mitered square blanket Belinda made entirely from scraps of denim yarn. It’s a whopper-25 blocks. I.e., 100 miters. Doubly magical for being made of both DENIM and MITERED SQUARES. I did NOT steal it but I did borrow it for the Loop event as a ‘sample from the book’.
My then-favorite square. Experimenting with a partially garter-stitch square. The trick is to keep the square the same size as the all-stockinette ones. Trust me, this will be cool. I just know it. I feel it in my bones.
A few days later, packing to leave my chum’s home in Versailles. Sorry, this rug is a bit too Versaillesy for a backdrop. But you can see that I had been knitting my little heart out, what with another train trip, then 24 hours of trying to either wake children up or get them to go to sleep against their will, followed by a one-day strike that made it impossible to do anything in France besides knit (I had to WALK to the Phildar store, I kid you not). Things were looking grim, pace-wise. I promised myself to knit 4 miters on the plane to New York.
And here we have the current status. 8.50 squares in total. Nowhere near where I need to be, but it’s starting to look downright blankety.
Perhaps I can distract Belinda with the mesmerizing Orange Square. Ooh. Aah. Orange square.
Or the emerging Partially Garter Square? Isn’t that EXCITING Belinda?
Anyway, I’m still enjoying knitting on this thing. There has been much evolution of Deep Thoughts on Color, as well as Profound Instincts on What Makes a Particular Stripe Pattern Interesting. There are a couple of miters I’m probably going to re-do for color reasons (it looks to be very easy to take one out if you’re careful with the scissors), and now that I’ve blown the dang 250 Gram Challenge, I’m thinking the blanket should be bigger than originally planned anyway, maybe 4 x 4 squares instead of 3 x 4. I am LOVING the no-sew concept. I really think it works. I am even working out how to solve this pesky little problem:
The Wobbly Center. Fear not the Wobbly Center. The center will hold.