Monday, July 26, 2010

Maia - a cautionary tale

Last week I completed my 6th shawl for 2010, Maia.

Name: Maia
Pattern: Maia by Rosemary Hill
Yarn: Schaefer Anne in an unknown colorway
Needles: Knitpicks Options, sz 4
Notes: This shawlette is named after Maia, the eldest of the Pleiades, and mother of Hermes. She lived on a mountain top, surrounded by trees and nature - which is why I chose the colorway that I did. The combination of greens, blues, and browns remind me of a sitting at Mycenae, looking out at the surrounding countryside. In Ancient Rome, the month of May was named after Maia, and she was known as the goddess of spring and beauty. I think this design is a great homage to Maia, and will be a great gift this holiday!
The most complicated part of this shawl is the cast on. It starts with a provisional cast on, and has beads, lace and edging all in one fell swoop! then you do it again the other direction, and start in right away on the body of the shawl with tons of lace and beads! All the beads and lace aside, the start is actually very similar to the start of a top down triangle shawl. You knit a rectangle, then pick up along the long edge and short edge and start the body. Honestly, once you get past this little fiddly bit, it is all very straight forward.

It was fun to get back to knitting with beads. Even though it can break my stride a bit, the end result is always so pretty. I makes me want to bead everything. Socks for Evad? Beaded! Blanket? beaded! Washcloth? Beaded!
Ok. Maybe not a blanket....
With all this glowing happy knittyness, why do I say this is a cautionary tale? Companion project stupidity. In the picture above, you will notice the 1x2 garter rib, knit flat. while this requires you pay some attention, it is not difficult to do, assuming you can read your knitting. Well, what happens when your companion project is also in garter rib?
I heard you say it. Nothing. It makes it easier!
My companion project was this hat:

Cute right? True, but also a pita. It is in 2x2 garter rib, in the round. Good lord. My brain had some major issues switching back and forth. I shouldn't have to think so hard to make a little baby hat!! Take it from me, heed my warning, think before you leap.... pick your companion project wisely!

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