Yesterday, I stopped at JoAnn Fabrics and got some fun stuff, which I thought would cheer me up, and it did, for an hour or two.
I bought a copy of Knit.1 Magazine. It has a lace shawl that I've been thinking about ever since I saw it in February when the new store opened. It's called the Sparkly Shawl, and they did it in light blue, which is always something to get my attention. It has clear glass beads with a silver lining, and the way the beads are done is interesting. Because the beads are strung as you go along (with a crochet hook), and because of the looser nature of lace knitting, I suspect that the beads show equally on either side, making it a bit more reversible.
I really liked the Shipwreck Shawl from Knitty, but the urge to knit lace has been building up for a while, but I think the sparkly shawl will teach me enough to branch out in new directions in lace design. It will certainly give me the chance to practice some new techniques.
So, I ordered the yarn from Knit Picks today, plus a small crochet hook from Etsy to pick up the beads. You'd think that if yesterday didn't cheer me up, that this would. There's more cheerful stuff about yesterday, by the way.
I'm going to do the shawl in black with blue/purple rainbow beads, so it will look very different from the photo in the book. I'm also thinking about doing three panels rather than two, which would give it a better shape. I haven't ordered the beads yet, and I'm thinking of trying to persuade Holly to go to either a new bead shop in Occoquan or to Beadazzled. JoAnn has some beads I like, too, but I'd rather look a bit before I settle for something when there may be something better out there. I've already looked at the Fire Mountain Gems website, and they probably have everything available, so I've probably already seen it all.
Anyway, back to yesterday and my swag.
I bought a tiny latch hook tool which I had hoped would fit through the hole in the size 6 seed beads. No dice. The latch hook is very small, though. A latch hook is always handy for knitters, so it's still a good buy, and has a very nice, ergonomic handle. If you want something like this, look in the section with the sewing tools. It's made by Dritz and has a pink (ugg) handle with rubbery soft fuchsia inserts to make it easy to hold. It would work well with sock or lace weight yarn for picking up stitches. It's a good tool for any lace knitter.
Here's a photo of the shawl from the magazine and the neat latch hook.
I've gotten hooked on latch hook tools lately. They're really good for fixing knitting problems, rather than having to rip back to fix it.
You can find a larger tool here and a slightly smaller one here. It looks like the first one would be a good size for worsted and bulky yarns, and the second one for thinner yarns. Even better yet, I bought a few seed stitch tools last year, and I love them. It's a double-ended latch hook that you can use for latching up mistakes in both knit and purl stitches.
You'd think that all this would cheer me up, but it really hasn't.
The other cheerful stuff I bought was at Borders.
The newest Dresden Files book is out, and it's called Turn Coat, and I bought a copy. The only problem with that is that I have a book out of the Library, and another one to pick up and read, and all of them have to be back soon, so I have to read them first or wait for them to come up in the lists for another go at them.
But I read a bit of the beginning of it on the way home on the bus, and it's dynamite so far!
There's a new Lost on ABC tonight, followed by the premier of The Unusuals. Right before that, there's also a new episode of Better off Ted, which is a really quirky new science fiction/office drama/comedy.
Have a great evening!
I found a really neat stitch marker shown here. She has instructions for making a similar device here (scroll down for the row counter). She just makes tags with shrinky dink material with whatever markings are appropriate, and slips the lower ring each time. The tag on the top tells her what she's doing each round.
Holly was doing something similar to this a couple of weeks ago while she was knitting a circular blanket. She put "YO" on one side of an index card and "K" on the other. Each time she finished a row, she'd flip it over to remind her whether she was supposed in increase with a yarn over at each stitch marker or just knit around.
I like both of these ideas.