One of the joys of getting older is that you still get to go back to school. I’ve been perusing the catalogues from the Osher Institute, the Continuing Ed Department, and other organizations that sponsor classes and lectures to help people like me keep senility at bay. (The pickings are rather odd this fall. They range from the sublime–a Shakespeare series where we go to two plays and then get to talk to the director and actors–to the ridiculous: “The History of Cereals and Premium Toys.”) Some instructors are expert and knowledgeable, and some are a bit–strange. So yeah, it’s basically College Lite, but caveat emptor. At least now nobody is requiring me to take peculiar classes, whereas back in the day the Powers that Were thought that I wouldn’t be able to get by without “The Morphology of the Russian Verb.” They were wrong about that.
Whatever I end up doing, what’s a lecture without a knitting project, right? If you accidentally take a less-than-riveting class, at least you’ll have something to show for it. (The same was true of “Morphology of the Russian Verb.” I got a bright gold, acrylic, old-school 60’s poncho out of that one.)
So far I’ve got a couple of good social/lecture projects on the needles. One is Yumiko Alexander’s Wisteria, in Malabrigo Arroyo in the ever-popular Arco Iris colorway, pictured above. It’s one of those easy vests that is basically a shawl with armholes. It’s done on sport weight yarn on size 10.5 needles, so it’s a very quick knit:
And my Ravelry homies, the Fabulous and Fifty forum, are doing Ambah O’Brien’s lovely Torquata shawl as a knit-along, so I certainly had to participate. The simple lace pattern is easy to memorize and easy to read on the needles, so it qualifies as social knitting, and is turning out to be a lot of fun:
I’m using a gradient set of Miss Babs’s Yummy yarn in a gray-plum-rust colorway called “Grand Bazaar”:
The first major project that will soon get too big to drag around will be the multidirectional ruana:
It is a design by Miriam Leth-Espensen, the owner of Miriam’s Well in Santa Fe. Her designs are free with the purchase of the yarn, and not available elsewhere. I’ve done several, and can hardly get enough of them. This one involves five colors of Ultra Alpaca:
And if all of that gets done before spring, I shall conclude the season with Norah Gaughan’s Intersect:
Brooklyn Tweed’s Loft yarn has been calling my name for years; I’ve been itching to use its crunchy, authentic, tweedy, Targhee-Columbia goodness in a fingering-weight cardigan, and when I saw this pattern, I felt the cold fingers of Fate around my neck, and knew my time had come. I had my color choices narrowed down to four, so I ordered the sample card to help me decide; now they are narrowed down to seven. (I hope I don’t end up with gray again–somehow gray yarn keeps finding its way into my stash, even when I try really hard to choose something else. But they have such lovely, silvery grays!)
There may be a few other things, too–palate cleansers of one sort or another. It’s possible that a UFO or two might get done–or, just as likely, frogged.
So there. It’s good to have a plan.