I made the mistake of reading a light novel over Labor Day about a knitting club. By the end of it, I was trolling yarn blogs and thinking about stopping in at my own fabulous yarn store. Many of my favorite people knit and I've done a little bit of knitting and crocheting myself. I still have a beautiful sweater in my drawer that I knit in the early 90's. It's a little outdated, but so pretty, I keep it for the memories. I remembered how I loved to have a project at hand that felt good, that was more about technique than design and could be done while watching tv.
I finally caved yesterday and went to check out some ideas at The Yarnery. I'm motivated to learn new techniques by color and materials, so this a was very dangerous visit. A scarf that uses 6 skeins of alpaca was delicious but I would have needed to take out a second mortgage on the house to purchase the materials. I ended up picking up a crochet pattern for a variegated scarf made with lace-weight yarn (the pattern photo is above). The yarn is a baby soft merino wool dyed in "hummingbird" colors: dusky purples and indigos with chartreuse green. I couldn't resist it.
One of the reasons I was attracted to the pattern is that it only takes one skein of yarn. Great! I reasoned. I can master this and then make a bunch for Christmas gifts. I started imagining what colors I would choose for my friends and how pleased they would be to get something so unexpected.
It seemed like a good idea to wind the skein into a ball before I got started. 90 minutes later I was still winding the thread-like yarn and realized that "lace-weight" means really, really thin. I started to suspect that I had overestimated my abilities and perhaps even my eyesight.
This morning I looped the beginning chain (choosing to do it in the daylight, when I could actually see) and crocheted the first row. The colors are so beautiful and the yarn so lovely to touch that I'm sure I'll complete the project. But I'm definitely bringing up the high-intensity lamp from downstairs. And the advantages of the chunky alpaca may be worth the price next time!