out of sadness comes happiness

Here is a lovely seredipetous moment that only knitting can bring to life...

A  few months ago, we lost a dear friend and colleague at Churchmouse. Pam R. was a sweet, whip-crack funny soul with a Southern accent and a mean way with a crochet hook. I miss talking with her, I miss working with her, I miss her great expressions - and she was just about the only person I can think of who could take on my crazy knitting Sisterhood and teach them all to crochet a mesh bag. What a trooper.

She left her worldly things behind and is now sitting and chatting and eating all the fried chicken she wants next to the God of her choosing - but she left behind her yarn stash to brighten the world for the rest of us.

It's sad to face the real truth that we might not have all the time in the world to knit everything we want. I look at my stash (which lives in my line of sight as I sit here and type, thanks to a remodeling suggestion by BlueGal!) and try to imagine how long it would take me to knit it all up ... it would be a year or two of time well-spent, sitting with yarn that's told me what it wanted to be, and is now just patiently waiting for its turn. (When it's not leaping off the shelves and dropping on my head, that is! When that happens, I listen and take the skein and swatch it that day - to appease it, if nothing else.)

Here's what I got to take home with me from Pam's stash:
1499159-1295291-thumbnail.jpgIt's a Vivian Høxbro kit, called "Navajo," with 19 skeins of the fabulous Harrisville New England Shetland yarn in a number of amazing and bright colors... which are oh-so Pam, but maybe not very me?

I was thrilled to give it a home, but quite certain that I wouldn't knit it up with the enclosed pattern. "Well, it will make a pretty neat Adult Surprise Jacket," I thought to myself, and put it on the floor of my studio next to my stash cabinets.

And there it has sat for the last few weeks, getting used to its new surroundings and chatting up its fellow kits (it's developed a close friendship with the Hanne Falkenberg kit I haven't knit up yet, either).

Don't ask me where the inspiration came from. I don't think Pam's kit was sitting in my line of sight, even - but suddenly it came to me what it wants to be.
All together, the sum total of these colors is too much for me.
But teased apart into 2 groups? those 19 skeins morphed into distinct projects which I'd already put in my queue:

1. Remember the "Golden Lotus Kimono" that I'd been swatching  colors for in FeralKnitter's "Color Your Own Fair Isle" class back in November?
How are these for colors, Janine?:
HarrisvilleLotus.jpgI want to find more of the BRIGHT, screaming da-glo pink (color #88), or perhaps I'll head to a melon color as another CC - but the rest of the colors are BANG ON what I'd had in mind all along for the Lotus.






2. And the remaining skeins from the kit?
1499159-1295289-thumbnail.jpg Perfect for a new obsession: Eunny Jang's "Endpaper Mitts."

I blame eileenwh, who was starting these at knitting circle on Wednesday. Wicked temptress.
I had been imagining them in this ochre color with a red or perhaps a dark pewtery-gray, and had set aside 2 skeins of Koigu for it... And then -poof!- these were left over after I parsed out the skeins for the Lotus jacket!

Now comes the fun part: swatching and knitting, and keeping the memory of a friend alive. All those stitches, all those hours, and then every time I wear it, Pam will still be around.

Thanks, Miss P.