Sunday, February 24, 2008

Recent Acquisitions

As is usual for art museums, the museum where I work to occasionally has Recent Acquisitions exhibitions to showcase works that have been newly acquired and accessioned into the permanent collection. I went to Stitches West yesterday, and acquired a few treasures of my own, so I felt it was appropriate to hold a sort of Recent Acquisitions blog post, if not exhibition, of my own.

I had in fact resisted for some time the idea of going to Stitches at all, as I am so weak in the face of all the delights that are there that I spend too much money every time. All my ploys to control my spending have much proven too fallible to defeat my ability to circumvent myself and overspend, so I didn't go at all last year. It was hard to give it up for 2 years running, but my budget restraints combined with the other commitments I had for the weekend convinced me to forgo the pleasure once again. But then I found out that it was my only chance to catch up with Vickery, who is here on a visit from Wyoming, and and I couldn't resist that temptation, too. So off I went.

And what did I find? My first acquisition was my very first, very own skein of Socks that Rock yarn. I've seen it on so many blogs and have never been able to see it in the flesh (wool?) before, so I jumped on the chance to acquire my own skein at last, and to pick out the colour by seeing it in person rather than through the distortions of a computer monitor. I chose Purple Rain in the lightweight version; it's a gorgeous combination of blue violet, grey and fuchsia. I'm planning on making the Monkey socks by Cookie A, with some of the modifications Cara has made, such as a slightly shorter leg and a picot hem at the top.

I also found the single item I was actually looking for - it's intended as a gift for a dear friend, and as she reads this blog on occasion I won't show a picture as the colour will be a clue that it's for her and I prefer complete surprise in this case. I'll just tell you that it's a skein of Tilly Thomas's Plie yarn, a hand-dyed silk with glass beads. (sorry; I couldn't find a website to link to for this one).

My "big" purchase was from Brooks Farm Yarns - I got three skeins of Acero, a superwash wool, silk, and viscose blend in a sportweight. It's deep teal, with an intriguing heathered quality due to the different fibres taking the dye differently. It's one of those yarns that's not as splashy as a mutli-coloured handyed yarn, but has a quiet elegance that I anticipate being absolutely beautiful when knitted up. Each skein has 420 yards in it, so even three skeins is a lot of yarn. Not sure yet what this will be, but I look forward to experimenting with it very soon.

Other, non-Stitches additions to my collection (unlike the museum, I hope the collection is not permanent in the sense that the yarns never get used; I just hope that the stash remains an intact, if fluid, entity) were the result of my sweetheart, TW, giving me a generous gift certificate to the LYS, Benicia Knitting Circle, as a Christmas gift. I decided to use it to get yarn for Norah Gaughan's Hex Coat, from Knitting Nature (which was also a gift from TW last year). The pattern calls for Lopi Lite, which I don't care for, and I couldn't find a substitute that was exactly on in gauge, so I decided to wing it and use Cascade 220, even though it knits up to a different gauge. I'll have to rework the pattern a bit but I think it can be done without too much grief. Even if it just didn't work out I still have a full 10 skeins of a luscious ruby heather Cascade 220, and how bad can that be after all?

To finish off the full gift certificate, I also got a few skeins of Silky Wool to combine in some way with the cream I have leftover from an earlier project. This might be another sweater, or it might be the beginning of a log cabin blanket a la Mason Dixon Knitting's blanket, using the same yarn.

And that concludes our show for today. Please stay tuned for future exhibitions arranged along the theme of New Work.

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