Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Gone But Not Forgotten

Back when I lived in Los Angeles and was volunteering regularly with Binky Patrol, I met one of our members who used to make deliveries for us to various clinics and shelters.  Her name was Diane.

She had been ill but was doing better when I met her, and she often apologized to the group that she didn't make more blankets, but we didn't care; we LOVED that she made deliveries--are you kidding?!

When she grew too ill to continue with the group, and realized she wasn't going to recover, she gave me all of her remaining yarn and other supplies, and told me to do with it what I willed.  Most of it went to Binky Patrol, but there were a couple of things she suggested I keep, if I wanted them.

Some months earlier, she had bought some lovely sea green Berroco GlacĂ© yarn, planning to make herself a shell or light sweater.  She never got around to it.

She told me she knew I could make something beautiful with it.  I felt honored, but after she passed away, it took me a long time to make anything out of this yarn.  I just couldn't find the right pattern.

I tried a few things crochet, a few things knit, and I didn't like the look of anything I tried.  (What, me, a perfectionist?  Nooooo.  I guess Diane had me pegged.)

Finally, I was browsing through one of Barbara Walker's wonderful treasuries of patterns, and found something called Milanese Lace, which I thought would do justice to Diane's yarn.

Finally I was happy with the result.  I call it the Milan Scarf, and the pattern is available now in my Etsy shop.

It's a good beginning lace pattern, not too challenging.  The worsted weight ribbon yarn gives it a really nice drape.

The Berroco GlacĂ© has been discontinued, but you can probably still find some out there in the yarn-osphere.  You can also substitute any worsted weight yarn, ribbon or otherwise.

As soon as I can get to the post office, the scarf pictured is going off to Handmade Especially For You.  They give "comfort scarves" to women in shelters for domestic violence.

Among other treasures Diane gave me were a couple of ivory crochet hooks, which I love.  I think of her every time I use them.

I just used the smaller one to make a pair of socks from a pattern by Elisa Purnell, called My Favorite Lacy Top-Down Socks.

You start at the ankle and work to the toe, then go back to the ankle and make the cuff.

I chose not to make them too high, and had plenty of yarn left over to start another pair.

I don't know if Elisa is offering this particular pattern for sale or free or otherwise, but you can clamor for her to do so at her blog, Yarn Tails.

She does have a lot of cool free patterns there.  Just in case you like free patterns.  (Insert giant grinning face here.)

Anyway, the ivory hook was the perfect size for the fingering weight yarn (Cascade Heritage Sock yarn, in case you were wondering.)  So, thanks again, Diane, wherever your spirit may be.

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