I am on a mission to be able to continue to wear cowls and scarves all spring (and summer if possible), and set out to find a little something to fit the bill – enter the Balustrade. With the lace and open pattern, and the yarn I picked up – a silk, cashmere and merino mix – I thought it would be perfect candidate and got to work.
From this experience I learned that for me, knitting lace and mediation have an interesting relationship. At times they remind me of each other, evoking a sense of calm and offering moments of clarity, and at other times I need the skills and lessons offered from the latter, to help me get through the challenges posed by the first.
When I knit lace, I find myself chanting. I repeat the pattern over and over in my head as I make my way through the row. Generally, there comes an a-ha moment or clarity, when I figure out the pattern and it become more intuitive. I can see where I am from looking at the stitches and know what I need to do to make the patten continue. On this project, I struggled to find that moment. Each row change and the three different sections, meant I was chanting for a long time. With out a doubt, this is the most ambitious pattern I’ve tackled. I made some errors along the way. The first required that I restart entirely after having knit 15 rows at 210 stitches. Oy, that was painful and called on some serious deep breathing to get through. Another error mid-way through the project sent me running to the yarn shop, where the lovely ladies helped me rip it back, get it back on the needles and figure out where I was – for which I am, deeply grateful. They also taught me about lifelines – what a genius idea – and something I ended up putting in periodically as I finished up the cowl. I got a ton done on the plane to Kauai, put it away while on vacation and finished it up when I got home. Once I blocked it, I was really pleased with the result. In making this I learned a lot, was challenged in new ways and ended up with a gorgeous spring accessory. I’d say at the end of the day that is success!
So, see what i mean…knitting lace and meditation…deep breathing, chanting, gratitude, finding calm when challenged, focus, and at times a moment of clarity.
Without further ado … here is my Balustrade.