Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Amazing Lace Challenge #1: Knit one for the Grams

The Knitter
Zooks is a thirtysomething accountant by day, knitter by night. She dabbled briefly with knitting in her teen years – long enough to knit a sleeveless sweater – before going wool-wild twenty years later when she found the greatly improved fiber products available at the local yarn shop. In the intervening year and three quarters, Zooks is discovering a penchant for lace knitting. In fact, the intrepid lacer had just two lace projects under her belt (both were Birches) when she decided to throw restraint to the wind with the challenging Wedding Ring Shawl. Being a compulsive overachiever and despite being new to lace, Zooks wasn’t dissuaded from the project simply because it was described as being for the "ultra-skilled knitter".

When not knitting or analyzing debits and credits, Zooks can be found poring over the latest guidebook while planning her next journey somewhere in the world.

The Fiber
Skacel Merino "Merry" Lace Colorway 100 is beyond excited to be a contestant in the Amazing Lace challenge. From the time that she was just a young roving still wet behind her ears, Merry's big dream in life was to be transformed into a piece of lace that would be lovingly worked by skilled hands and cherished forever by a caring owner. While languishing in a local yarn shop's display, Merry spent her time meditating on how best to be a knitting partner. She brings to the Amazing Lace a strong commitment to never knotting or splitting, holding tight to the needle to prevent dropped stitches, and keeping her stitches as still as possible in the fiber-chilling event of a tinking.

When not meditating, Merry can be found checking her plies for the proper amount of twist.

The Project
Merry and Zooks will be teaming up to knit Balmoral, a dinner table cloth with a central motif of thistles. When Zooks first saw the pattern for Balmoral two weeks ago, she knew it was a beautiful piece of lace with overwhelming sentimental value for the intended recipient. She also knew that time is of the essence.

Zooks's grandmother loves Scotland a great deal, so much so that in 2001, Zooks's Christmas gift to her grandmother was a two-week vacation to the land of kilts, haggis, lochs, bagpipes – and thistles. The vacation was a wonderful success and very well timed; just five years later, her grandmother’s health troubles would make such a trip now impossible. Zooks and her grandmother share a special relationship and she knows that the handmade gift of Balmoral will touch her grandmother's heart very deeply. Balmoral will be gifted on the occasion of the pending octogenarian's birthday which falls on Labor Day. [Editor’s note: Could the official start and end dates of the Amazing Lace be any more perfect??]

Coming Together
Zooks grew up in a small town in Michigan which has a notable claim to fame: it's the hometown of George "win one for the Gipper" Gipp. Besides sharing a hometown, Zooks and the Gipper also share the same birthday. This tenuous connection has inspired Merry's and Zooks's Amazing Lace battle cry: "Knit one for the Grams!"

Official Photo

Hanging Out
Let's a take a peek at what Zooks and Merry are up to in the days prior to the commencement of the Amazing Lace:

Reading up on her intended namesake, Balmoral Castle

Tea and conversation with friends...

...until Super Bully Alpaca crashed the party

Going over the game plan


At 2:06 PM, Blogger mazhalai said...

hehe!! i loved the "crashed the party" photo :)

At 3:51 PM, Blogger JennyRaye said...

What a hoot! This was great!

At 8:49 AM, Blogger The Purloined Letter said...

Great post! I love to see the yarn studying!

At 12:04 PM, Blogger KnitNana said...

Grams is one lucky lady! What a gorgeous gift this will be...LOVED your party shots!

At 7:42 PM, Blogger sillyewe said...

hahahahahaa Great!!!!

At 10:18 AM, Blogger earthchick said...

Great post! I look forward to following your team's progress!

At 1:35 PM, Blogger pinky said...

Ahahhaa! Your post is a scream! I have yet to take my team picture, but yours are highly inspirational.

At 8:14 PM, Anonymous Rachel said...

Lucky Grams! I hope those bulky alpaca thugs don't stand in the way of her getting her Balmoral!

By the way, it sounds as though your yarn is really doing its part to make the team successful -- very admirable.


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