Friday, March 15, 2013

Keep Calm And Block On


We finished!  And with time to spare :-).


I finished the collar late in the afternoon yesterday and stopped for evening chores and after dinner wove in my ends, nitpicked a few things and...well, it was finished.  I'd done it.  I held it up, this part of me that I'd basically lived with for 12 days.  This part of me that I will always hold in my heart and still miss so much.  

I held it up, set it down, held it up, decided to try it on, looked in the mirror, tugged at the sleeves, smoothed the front, tried to straighten the bottom, told myself to not worry, that it hadn't been blocked, that the patterning would settle down, the lines would straighten out, that it would be lovely...and well loved.


And no matter what, I would love this sweater.  It was made from two of my favorite sheep.  It was a herculean effort that, to be perfectly honest, I really wasn't sure I could do.  There was a little voice though in the back of my head or maybe deep in my heart that said to go for it.  That all would be well and this was going to be a great adventure.  And it was. 


That's not to say I wasn't just a teeny bit worried as I gathered it off the table this morning and plunged it into a sink full of hot water.  What if I didn't love it?  

Wool in water is a wonderful thing.  Within minutes I could see the cables relax, the lace settle in, Woolliam's Cotswold curls start to halo.  I rolled it in several towels to sop up as much water as I could and headed out to the skirting table.  Stella came down and we pinned and measured and pinned and double checked our measurements and pinned some more.


I love to block.  There is nothing like seeing your lumpy, bumpy, misshapened, wonky wool sweater transformed into exactly what you hoped it would be.


With your cables and lace patterning looking not half bad.


Made with pretty yarn you'll treasure forever.


And all was well.

39 comments:

sheepsclothing said...

so pretty!

Jean said...

Sara-
It looks wonderful -- so proud of you and what a lovely reminder of the special memories you will have of the sheep who supplied the wool

Sending you hugs

The Dancing Donkey said...

Stunning. That is the only thing I can think of to say. It is absolutely, positively stunning. Congratulations.

Dianne MacDonald said...

Yay! You did it! (and never again will I listen to all those words of doubt from you) It's beautiful and a wonderful accomplishment and you should be very proud. Dianne@sheepdreams

Tombstone Livestock said...

Ok now you have a serious problem ... 20 has his eye on it .... it may not fit Maisie but I'll bet 20 can make it fit.

Congratulations on finishing the Iknitarod on time and with a job well done.

Tyche's Minder said...

Oh it's beautiful.

Lori Skoog said...

I think I'm going to have to send you a blue ribbon for work above and beyond the call of duty. Can see why you love the blocking step. Wow! It's a beauty and I know how much it means to you. You'll have to wear it when you come to visit. You are a winner!

Michelle said...

All may be well, but it would be BETTER if there was a photo of you MODELING it!

Seriously, what a marvelous performance you put in, worthy of every fiber Marcel and Woolliam grew for it. I can only imagine how that must feel. Wow.

Maureen said...

Incredible! It truly is a work of Art and Soul.

Congratulations!

gowestferalwoman said...

YAY! congrats Sara!

Far Side of Fifty said...

You did it! You really did it! It is a work of art..your Marcel market Jacket..wonderful. I am certain you are going to feel all wrapped up in a special way when you wear it:)

CathyD. said...

It's just beautiful. And all the more so for all the grazing and growing, carding and spinning and knitting and love that went into it. To think that is Marcel's lamb fleece all these years later, ready to give you a hug anytime you want. I think I'm going to cry, I'm so happy for you.
(ps, glad you didn't listen to me...)

Alice said...

Congratulations on finishing your sweater in such beautiful fashion! The care and love that went into it will provide years of warm memories. Marcel could have wished for no more than this tribute. Enjoy!

majorasue said...

Beautiful! Marcel is smiling down on you and your very successful Iknitarod project.

Wol 'n Draad said...

Looks really lovely! Wow, what an effort! You must be so proud, and no matter what, this is a sweater to treasure.
Love, Ineke

Peacecat said...

Absolutely stunning, in effort, execution, and finished item. You are amazing!

MarmePurl said...

This is why I yearn to have a few sheep in my barn. To have this experience you so well put to words.
Congratulations
Wear it proudly :)

Spinners End Farm said...

You are nothing if not AWESOME sister! Your sweater is very inspiring.

cyndy said...

It is lovely, Sara. Truly a sweater that a shepherdess can be proud of~

I need orange said...

Beautiful work. I know you will love wearing it, with all it means warming your heart.

Jody said...

Oh that is so beautiful and I absolutely love that colour! Well done!!

LannieK said...

A true work of love, from the heart...
Congrats!

DFW said...

I agree, it is just beautiful. How about a picture with you wearing it?

melanie said...

Beautiful! But don't we ever get to see you IN it??? Perhaps giving your assistant (Maisie) a hug?

Thirteen Sheep (Or More) said...

I am just SO impressed! It's stunning! I'm thinking that you'd best keep an eye on 20 'cus he seems to have an eye on the sweater. Look at the expression on his face!
I agree that we need to see the sweater on you.
Do you have knitting calluses? :))

flowerweaver said...

Beautiful! A fine accomplishment!

Eva said...

I looks really lovely. It's been a treat following Iknitarod. :-)

Tiggeriffic said...

I have followed your iknitarod and am amazed at your handy knitting...What a wonderful sweater ~! It is so beautiful~! I can hardly wait to see it on you ~! take a picture soon~!...
Have a tiggeriffic Saturday~! ta ta for now from Iowa:)

Andee said...

Oh it is so beautiful! I love it and all the special meaning behind it.

LaColline said...

You have brought me to tears.

You paid attention to your inner voice, you have honored two beautiful sheep while shepherding Maisie and your flock,and with style, you have brought us along on the ride.

Tears of admiration and joy.
Congratulations on crossing the line early!! You are always a winner in my book.

Sheepmom said...

What an accomplishment! A great tribute to 2 great sheep. And now you know for sure that you can do anything that requires 2 knitting needles to achieve. No more doubts about your ability!

Please post a pic of you modeling it!

Nina said...

love times 100 for such a lovely sweater. I agree that blocking just changes everything for the better. Brilliant job!

Jan baby said...

whoopee! ! ! ! you did it, girl ! ! ! ! Beauuuutiful. Can't wait to try it on! just kidding.

Loco Lindy said...

Gorgeous..... You deserve to feel VERY proud!

Jenny Glen said...

How could you not love it?! It is a great sweater!!

Terry said...

It's beautiful! Congratulations!!!

~Kim at Golden Pines~ said...

That's one of the most beautiful hand knit sweaters I've seen. Just gorgeous! .CONGRATULATIONS!!!

Shirley said...

It is beautiful. I want to see a photo of you all snuggled up wearing it.

I'm gonna tell Mom! said...

That is beyond beautiful. Perfection. Sanctuary. Tribute. Memento. Achievement. Love
~kim

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