One note in response to a comment the other day: handpaint yarns go well with simpler lace; lots of variations in the colors will visually overwhelm the stitch pattern. The Monterey shawl in my book is one that I would very much recommend a solid or near-solid-color yarn for. It is complicated enough to work without having the jellyfish look like they got put in the blender while you’re trying to piece them together.
You remember the Dr. Seuss story of Bartholemew Cubbins and his 100 hats? He kept taking his hat off to the king as protocol required, only to have an identical one appear on his head, over and over. Finally, as the count got close to 100, the hats started changing and becoming more and more unique and more fun to see what might be coming next.
I think every creative person can relate to that one. You have to put in the practice time before you can play the instrument like a pro, but then you can really take off with it. (I am remembering a neighbor mom, who, when I was a teenager, often hired me to babysit her 10-year-old while the kid practiced her violin and their poodle howled non-stop. Smart mom.) You don’t start off with the stradivarius. Although, the Julia shawl, for instance, while aimed at beginners, is a beautiful rendition of Chopsticks (not to mention a simple carry-around project for anybody).
I’m hitting the Cubbins factor, and have started branching out more. This one is a wedding present for a dear friend and his bride. I can’t wait to finish it and pull it through my ring, so I can go, tadaah: a wedding ring shawl! If by wild chance there’s any problem, then I’m glad my husband wears a size 12; no one said whose wedding ring it had to be, right? But I’m sure it’ll go through mine. And the bride’s, which is what matters for that oh cool! factor.
Almost done. I can’t wait!
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