My good friend Jodie in Ohio, for whom I have done some test knitting (you will spot her socks in the Knitty issue that comes out any day now), just finished some test knitting of her own, and whoa, that's some test knitting--2.7 miles of yarn (she counted: 4725 yards, 2.7 miles, and 4.3 km). Here's Arctic Tundra (blocking)!
Here are some words straight from her:
"Feel free to share on your blog. The designer is MMario on Ravelry. Amazingly talented designer and it was an absolute pleasure doing this test knit for him. The design is called Arctic Tundra and can be found at his yahoo groups "patterns in progress" page. I first heard about Mmario through your friend John-Francis."
Pretty amazing when your friends from different parts of your life interact after having encountered each other on the blog. Thanks to John-Francis for making this connection! It's for reasons like this that I continue to write about my experiences and the people I encounter. You never know when a creative or personal connection will be made.
Back to Arctic Tundra (shown above before blocking), I am boggled (or I boggle, not sure how to use that word other than as the name of a game) at how much knitting this project involved. Jodie is incredibly prolific, true, but this amazed me. She said it took her four months to do, but I happen to know she worked on a couple of other projects at the same time, because her designer brain never stops churning away. Of course, the project had some challenges, especially when it came to blocking. More from Jodie:
It annoys me that I couldn't get the angle of the star equal in the center when I was blocking--but it was just too big. I didn't have an extra inch of floor--and that was after I overran the blocking mats and started slipping blocking pins between the boards of my oak floor. An incredibly memorable project.
After seeing the pre-blocking and the blocking photos, I was interested in finding out what she was going to use this project for. Certainly you'd need to be a "person of height" to wear it as a shawl! But, she has a perfect use, the grand piano cozy! How elegant and Victorian!
I find it interesting how MMario named the patterns. Each has to do with something you would find in the tundra. The photo below shows the patterns Polestar and Snow,Nelson Island, Musk Ox, Lemmings on the Tundra, and Bear Claw Edge, for example.
I hope this inspires some of you to tackle this project when it's officially published, and if not, to dream big with your knitting! You never know what you can do until you try!
As for me, I think I'll finish up that first mitten today, if the mundane world of job searching, grocery shopping and rain watching doesn't take up too much time! I got a lot done last night at a knitting and spinning pajama party, so I'll have one potentially warm hand soon.