Last Dance With Mary Jane

Last Dance With Mary Jane

On da Hook: February 10, 2017
Off da Hook: March 27, 2017
Pattern: Erigeneia by Silke Terhorst
Hook: US E – 3.5 mm
Yarn A: New Hope Alpacas (Fiber Content: 100% Alpaca; Fleece of: Brickfielder; Yarn Weight: Suri Fingering, 0)
Yarn B: New Hope Alpacas (Fiber Content: 100% Alpaca; Fleece of: Brickfielder; Yarn Weight: Suri Fingering, 0)
Yarn C: New Hope Alpacas (Fiber Content: 100% Alpaca; Fleece of: Vanilla Chip; Yarn Weight: Suri Fingering, 0)
Yarn D: Near Sawrey Farm Alpacas (Fiber Content: 100% Alpaca; Yarn Color: Yellow Onion w/Accents; Yarn Weight: 1, Fingering)
Dimensions: 58 (W) x 27 (D)
Price: USD $300.00

I am so glad to be done with this project: Last Dance With Mary Jane by Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers. I had originally bought this yarn back in 2014 and was going to try and improvise a crochet design along the likes of Merging Ripples Shawl by Kyoko Nakayoshi. I had a hard time getting started and ended up putting the project in hibernation.

Last Dance With Mary Jane
© A Hooker’s World

When I found the pattern, my first thought was the alpaca would be perfect; my only concern being whether or not I had enough yarn. Surely 900 yards would be enough!

Famous last words. My first problem was interpreting the instructions, which I blame for an uneven stitch count encountered after section three. fortunately, there are charts with the pattern, which made the rest of the pattern simpler. The next problem was that I ran out of Yarn A at the last seven double crochets in the second section! I fudged a solution by de-plying a matching acrylic yarn. Next: ! ran out of Yarn B in its second section by one row! Solution: Skipped last row. Lastly, I ran out of yarn before finishing the final row of the border.

Last Dance With Mary Jane
© A Hooker’s World

It’s My Life Shawl: Complete

It's My Life Shawl

Click an image to begin slide show…

Cast On: October 31, 2014
Cast Off: April, 14, 2015
Pattern: Exploration Station by Stephen West
Yarn A: MadelineTosh Merino Light (Fiber Content: 100% Superwash Merino Wool, Yarn Color: Vintage Sari; Yarn Weight: 1, Fingering)
Yarn B: MadelineTosh Merino Light (Fiber Content: 100% Superwash Merino Wool, Yarn Color: Jade; Yarn Weight: 1, Fingering)
Yarn C: MadelineTosh Merino Light (Fiber Content: 100% Superwash Merino Wool, Yarn Color: Leaf; Yarn Weight: 1, Fingering)
Yarn D: MadelineTosh Merino Light (Fiber Content: 100% Superwash Merino Wool, Yarn Color: Filigree; Yarn Weight: 1, Fingering)
Needle: US 6
Dimensions: 70 W x 35 H inches (approximate, after blocking)

Five months! A friend of mine asked me to participate in Stephen West 2014 Mystery Knit-A-Long. Being a fan of some of West’s designs and having access to some yarn, I decided to participate.

I was so excited when I discovered the beginning of this shawl was similar to Merging Ripples by Kyoko Nakayoshi, which I had been planning to knit up in lime green and cobalt blue. And then it turned into brioche. I had never done brioche and it looked simple enough to learn, so I started immediately without practicing. I got about six rows in and discovered a mistake I could not fix. I frogged back to the end of section one – fortunately having the correct number of stitches – ran a life line and started My Funny Valentine Cowl to practice.

After I finished the cowl, I resumed It’s My life and felt like a professional and seasoned knitter. From that point forward, I encountered no problems and enjoyed the knitting of this shawl. Knitting of this shawl taught me new knitting stitches/techniques, and for that, I am grateful. The i-cord border is really interesting and I may use that again in the future. I also really liked the stripes before the chevrons and will definitely incorporate that into the shawl I will make with the leftovers.

This shawl derived it’s name – It’s My Life by Talk, Talk – because at the time I cast on, I had just been fired from my job at the yarn store and I was feeling defiant. There are a couple of mistakes that will stand out to a professional and smaller errors that could be considered imperceptible, but overall I am very proud of this project.

Price: USD $344.80

It’s My Life Shawl: Clue 1 Complete

It's My Life Shawl
It's My Life Shawl
©A Hooker’s World

Granted, I am not the fastest knitter, but I love this so far. I was going to make the Merging Ripple Shawl by Kyoko Nakayoshi, but I am really loving this portion of Stephen West’s Exploration Station Mystery Knit Along, which emphasizes the short row turns (holes). However, as I am working this with my friend Ania and I am not pleased with what is coming up. While I am glad to be able to get some brioche experience, I love this shawl just that way it is. I may try to figure out the increase on my own and make one larger.

I am disappointed that I bought such fine yarn for this project, and find myself wishing I had made this mystery knit along with something cheaper. This is the primary reason I don’t like mystery knit alongs; you never know if you are going to like the pattern. After the brioche, which is the next section there is some kind of grid pattern that, in my opinion, is atrocious. Because I already know what the shawl will look like, there is not much of a mystery anymore.

I am glad to have finished clue one, as I told Ania I would be on brioche by the next meeting of One Skein Short, which is in tomorrow.