Sunday, March 25, 2007

a new perspective

it was champagne and chocolate day at the LYS today. i happened to be working so it was nice to have a busy store and be able to visit with everyone.

in between the business, i shared my shawl with a fellow shawl loving co-worker and told her how i discovered what i really needed was a poncho when she said, "make your shawl into a poncho. it's a rectangle so just sew up the sides and leave a space for your head to slip through." well, duh! here i had been looking at patterns that basically did just that and never once thought of applying it to my shawl.

which is why i love being at the LYS. because while we sit and knit and chat, i may discover a solution to a problem i have encountered; or see a yarn or pattern differently due to the way someone else is using it; or i become inspired to try something out of the ordinary or more challenging; or i learn to do something in a new or improved way. no matter what it is, it is always fun.

so this evening, i sewed up one side of my shawl and converted it to a poncho. and it worked! it may get a few stares because of there being a ruffle along one side or because, despite my best efforts, the pinstriping does not line up, but oh well. as a poncho it will stay in place and keep me warm. which is what my intention was when i made it. all i needed was a new way of seeing it.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

it's back!

i love the shawl. really i do. it is warm and comfy, like a blanket. and i love the ruffle at either end. i carry it with me always and wear it quite a lot. but i discovered i need two hands to maneuver a shawl and if i had truly thought about the consequences of surgery, i would have made a poncho.

last year i knitted the mini poncho from interweave knits poncho loco out of a rowan biggy print in this wonderful deep chocolate color. i once again found myself wearing it all the time because it was easy to slip on and off. but i need something warmer.

so the quest was on. could i find a poncho pattern that i liked? in a pattern that was simple and fast enough to knit while wearing my brace? i looked through all of my books and found this lovely herringbone poncho pattern in last minute knitted gifts. it was perfect, dressy and functional. but i was concerned about my ability to knit the "through the back loop" stitch with a brace and semi clumsy fingers. then i thought i would just design something simple, but decided now was not the best time to design my own poncho.

so after dropping my sweet friend at rehearsal this afternoon, i zipped over to the LYS to see if i could get inspired. after wandering to and fro for over an hour, owner christina came to my rescue. i told her my plan to knit a poncho, ideally out of alpaca so it would be warm and hopefully one that was a quick and easy knit. she suggested atacama 100% alpaca in the blue variegated colorway #505. while showing me a picture of how the yarn looked knitted up, i turned the page to find a simple rib stitch poncho pattern! it was a sign. i left the store with yarn and pattern in hand.

now the only challenge was could i knit for long periods of time. i knew i could knit, albeit slowly, but i could not knit for long and it wore out my shoulder. and though the pattern was a simple rib, it was 142 stitches long.

so with a wee bit of apprehension, i cast on. and then i knitted the first row and then the second and then the third and then i got interrupted. but i was able to knit. and with no soreness. wahoo! it's back! and i am so very grateful and excited!

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

and so it goes...

it has been a week since surgery and what an interesting week it has been. the meds made me unfocused and nauseous; having the brace on 24/7 means sleeping sitting up and it hurt to knit.

i am med free now; am able to get around much better, no longer being tethered to the cold therapy unit. i actually drove to get my hair washed and take my cute husband, who has been an absolute angel through all this, to lunch.

and since we were downtown and within walking distance, stopped by the LYS where i met a woman who had a similar surgery a year or so ago. it was nice to hear what she had to say and see how the surgery was of benefit to her. she said she was able to knit a couple of weeks after surgery. at first, just a RS and WS; then a RS, WS, RS; then until her arm tired. it was just good to hear it came back, especially from someone who now loves to knit socks.

so i think i will try to knit again tonight. just to see how it goes.