So, the lace is going well. After I did the one sleeve, I took some of the advice of other Ravelers who had made that same sweater and started working on the body (the pattern tells you to work the sleeves first), which is done flat, so that I could really get used to how the lace was working, and that has turned out to be great advice. That really helped me understand how the stitches I was purling or slipping or passing over or whatever were "making" the lace itself. I really couldn't see it when I started. I just tried to keep following the pattern diligently, even if I didn't understand it, and eventually (after lots of starting over and ripping out) I started to feel more comfortable, and to see the design of the leaves, and that was neat. There's a metaphor here. I think it's reminding me to have faith. To keep moving forward, with faith.
What inspired this newfound optimism that I could learn to knit lace were a few knitting projects I finished entirely without drama last week, one of which is this sweet little navy sweater. When I was looking at my grandma's navy-and-white blanket a few weeks ago, I thought about maybe trying to do another blanket like it, but settled on a bitty sweater instead (because my attention span is only baby-sweater sized these days). While browsing Ravelry (by the way, the details for all of the things I am knitting or crocheting will be on my Ravelry project pages, so if you would like more information about the things I am working on, please sign up for Ravelry, and then you can see those details), I came across this version of the b18-10 sweater, which I already had in my favorites and planned to make in pale blue or gray. But seeing it in navy sealed the deal. The buttons had me at hello.
I made it exactly as the pattern was written, except that I added a row of single crochet in white all the way around the outer edge, as Licear did. Someone asked me how I like the DROPS Merino Extra Fine yarn, and I love it. I have used it on three projects now, and it just feels good — plump and not too floppy but still soft. I think it's my new favorite yarn. Now that we're breaking rain and cold records in Portland this "summer," I'd like to say this is a winter sweater but I can't. It's a pure-wool Oregon summer sweater.