Thursday, October 23, 2008

Lumpy sweater and fruit flies

So, I finished the spinster sweater this morning before work. I haven't sewn the underarm seams or woven in the ends. I didn't even have time to try it on before I left but judging by the other night when I did, I think I'm going to need to crochet around the neck to stabilize it.
And it looks totally fine, right? Like a totally fine, normal-person sweater? Not like the insanest piece of insanity that ever was?

You're so sweet.

I didn't have time to take any close-ups this morning, but because both yarns varied so wildly gauge-wise, I kept switching back and forth between doubling the yarn and using it singly and sometimes stranding it when I was working with skeins that varied a lot stitch to stitch. But sometimes I was lazy about keeping everything as close to my magical 3 stitch-to-the-inch gauge as I could and, let's face it, sometimes there was some hot whiskey-fueled complacency to blame too.
So, some parts of the sweater are thick and lumpy and some parts are thin and sad and some parts are just right, but together it's all a bit crazytown.

Also, I took up a long-neglected spinning project recently. A long, long time ago, I decided that I wanted A Serious, Long-Term Project and I bought a head-spinningly gorgeous white Romney fleece from Mary Pratt, which I sent out to be processed because I didn't have the facilities for fleece processing wherever I was living at the time. Then I spun the whole thing, which was five pounds? maybe four?, into singles. I divided the singles into three batches of equal weight and dyed each of the batches a slightly different color: one red, one purple and one blue, the plan being that I would ply them all together for a three-ply yarn of colorful wonderfulness.

However, when the dyeing was done, I realized that while I really liked each of the colors individually, I didn't love them all together. I did some half-hearted plying at the time, so I have two 2-ply skeins of the red, one 2-ply skein of the purple and, for some unknown reason, one Navajo-plied skein of the blue.

I took them all out again recently and realized that I really like the red and purple together, though not with the blue. (although the blue is actually my favorite of them overall.) (Pay attention. There will be a quiz later.) I further realized that the 2-ply of these singles is almost exactly the same as the Lett Lopi I recently recovered from the failed Hex Coat, so now I'm thinking about some sort of extraordinarily cozy cardigan with red and purple colorwork on the yoke.

Here are the three colors, a skotch washed out in the sunlight but not too badly:

In other news, last night, Zoe and I went to see a screening of several science-related short films as part of the Imagine Science Film Festival, which was loads of fun. The best was a documentary about a lab full of scientists in New York that study fruit flies. They waxed positively rhapsodic about how beautiful they are under the microscope and how similar their DNA is to human DNA and how applicable their research is to human cancer research and nerve development and all sorts of other things. Really fascinating stuff. And we had the pleasure of becoming fast friends with a British violinist named Fenella, who was sitting near us and had just arrived in the States for six months. Just a really good night overall, the kind that makes me happy I live here and a good reminder that there's a lot of interesting stuff and interesting people out there and I just need to make the effort to seek them out.


claudia said...

As soon as I procure a lemon, I'm making that whiskey thing.

I'll need to see the sweater modelled before I can comment.

Ashley Word said...

Your "spinster sweater" has totally got me dreaming of chunky knits, worn-in leather boots, and hot cocoa. You've got to embrace the sweater! You can totally pull it off beyond the confines of home. :)

And believe it or not, your fruit-fly-film experience has got me checking out what's going on at the science center here. I live a handful of blocks from that place, and I haven't ever thought to check it out!