Sunday, July 14, 2013

A knitting post: one in a highly irregular series.

Hmm, well.  It's Sunday, which means I need to write a blog post.  Let's see...I could talk about how well the Pipe Woman Chronicles freebie weeks are going (and if you're here for the first time after reading one of my books, welcome!).  Or I could talk about how much fun I'm having with the LynneQuisitions I've been doing for Indies Unlimited.  Or I could do a post dissecting the ruling against Apple in the price-fixing case and what that's going to mean for indies. 

Or I could talk about the ideas I'm ruminating on for the new series, and potentially get people hyped up for something that might not end up in the books, after all. That sounds like a great idea, huh?

I know!  Let's talk about knitting!

Shawls are my new big thing to knit.  I'll be honest -- and this will come as a shock to you, I know -- I've never been a frou-frou dresser.  Which was a bit of a problem when I entered the working world in the 1980s. Back then, women who wanted to be taken seriously at work dressed exactly as advised in the book Dress for Success.  It's laughable today, of course, but back then, women were told to wear a version of the men's suit: a blazer and A-line skirt (trousers were still frowned on for professional women).  Skirts should fall just above the knee, tops needed to cover cleavage, and nylons in skin tones were to be paired with sensible pumps.  Women were also advised to develop their ascot-tying skills, as a nod to men's neckties.  Oh, and we were supposed to load ourselves up with jewelry; as I recall, the magic number of pieces (to include bracelets, necklaces, lapel pin, wristwatch, rings, and ONE set of earrings) was ten.

I did okay with the suits, back in the day, and the pumps.  And even the nylons, gods help me (clear nail polish was my friend -- not to paint on my toes, but to paint on my nylons when my toes wore through 'em).  But the jewelry thing was too gaudy for me -- the best I ever did was five or six, I think (two rings, the watch, the lapel pin, and a couple of necklaces in graduated sizes).  And I never got the appeal of scarves.

Fast-forward thirty years.  Today, my work wardrobe consists of a selection of slacks in basic colors and a slightly larger selection of...oh, let's call them collarless knitted tops, to get around the implication that I wear t-shirts to work.  I have a couple of hand-knitted jackets that I pull out for days when we have clients in the office, but I tend to want to shed them as soon as I can, even though it's verboten. (Men get professional points for taking off their jackets and rolling up their sleeves; women never have.)

But then I started hearing about shawls, and I began to realize the possibilities. A lot of the shawl patterns on Ravelry are exceedingly lacy (here's the one my daughter Amy is working on right now, and more power to her); I don't bother with them because I know I'll never wear them (see "not a frou-frou dresser" above).  But garter-stitch shawls in interesting shapes? Now you're talking my lingo. They're dressy without being fussy, you get to wear fun pins with them, and they don't take nearly as long to knit as a jacket.

So! Here are a few that I've made:

The Wingspan (before I wove in the ends)
The TGV - my Danube cruise project
The Simple Shawl - my Alaska project

The Adirondack (with the Lady Morgana)
The Simple Shawl is folded in quarters in this picture; I had just finished it, but the edges were curling up and I had no way to block it while I was still on vacation.  I've got a picture of it blocked, but the background is prettier in this one....

My current project is called a Dragonwheel.  With any luck, it will end up looking something like this, although my yarn is more red-brown than the fire-engine red here:
I'll keep you posted.  Oh, and if you're on Ravelry and want to friend me there, I'm lynnecm.

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