I love how lace looks while it blocks. The curves that were squashed on the needles curve elegantly; the noodle-like appearance disappears into smooth flatness, open work blooms, and stitches even themselves out.

My husband looked at the large crescent on the floor, grabbed a couple of zauberballs and my pinbox, and did this:

Now I am creeped out by my shawl. Thanks.

Much better.

Pattern review: Annis by Susanna IC, an online pattern published as a late addition to the Spring+Summer 2010 of the free webzine Knitty. Within a few days of its publication, Annis jumped to #1 on Ravelry’s list of works-in-progress, ahead by a factor of 10. Now, three months after it was published, over a thousand people are recorded as working on or having worked on it. It’s for good reason: We all have splurged or been gifted one delicate little skein of luxury laceweight that is so precious but hardly enough to do anything with. When a pattern like this comes along – free, quick, small, interesting, and an original shape, we jump on it quicker than when we were collecting POGs in middle school. My only warning: make sure you cast on REALLY LOOSELY. I thought I had, but the points are still kind of tight, which means it kinda flips up when I wrap it around my neck (see below). That’s something I’ll fix if I do it again, which (shock of shocks) I might have to.

Cashmere is a little miracle of the animal world: it comes from goats, is very fine (which makes it soft) and – here’s the funky thing – the crimp in the fiber changes directions randomly. This adds even more air, making it super-warm (trapped air = insulation) in addition to super-light and super-soft.

Yarn review: My perspicuous spouse scored me some Mama Llama Cashmere 2 ply from someone destashing on Ravelry, wrapped it and stuffed it in my stocking last Christmas. He must have heard me talking about cashmere and taken a hint! The little 400 yard skein of 100% cashmere was pure glory. It was hand-dyed in a perfectly lovely semi-solid teal that is unusual for me, but will add a little spring to my wardrobe. Again, one warning: Jared was told that this yarn should be hand-wound, as it is rather fragile. I did this very carefully, but found that the yarn already had 3 or 4 breaks in it! This made me a little unhappy, but cashmere is very easy to spit-splice, so it was of no consequence. And I really can’t talk, since anyone who buys lace from my shop may have the same problem, though I have the excuse that mine was recycled and has been through a lot.

100% cashmere is so toasty in that just this little dinky thing, tucked under my coat in winter, will keep my neck as hot as a giant wool scarf wrapped around three times. You can imagine that this photo shoot was very short.

3 thoughts on “Annisthesia

  1. So pretty! I may have to ask my momma for a cashmere skein for christmas so I can experience the wonders of a luxury yarn! I am sitting here grinning like a loon and laughing. Momma is looking at me and asking me what is it? Just told her and she looked a bit shell shocked!


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