Hey everyone! Spoilers ahead for Clues 2 and 3 of the WestKnits Geogradient MKAL ahead.
I thought I’d check in on how my Geogradient is doing, with the fourth and final clue being released today. I’m fairly behind, Clue 3 is basically split into two halves, and I’m just heading into the second half, plus I have all of Clue 4 to do. This week, I thought it would be fun to do some comparison of each of the years of the MKAL I’ve participated in, both in terms of how long it takes me to complete them, as well as the total number of stitches.
This year’s MKAL is very similar to 2021 in terms of number of stitches, though most of its stitches are in clue 3. Clues 1,2, and 4 each had a similar number of stitches, which was a nice surprise this morning! There are some optional extra rows, but I’ll probably keep it to the recommended size, especially due to how I’ve used my yarn (more on that in a sec). And I feel “behind” on this, but as you can see from the left chart, I really only finished within that 4-5 week time period once in 2021. So I’m still doing well in terms of progress when compared to other years!
Ok, now that we’re far enough into the post where I don’t think people will see these pics if they’re avoiding spoilers, here’s about where I am. I did finish the live slip stich section on the right of this pic and am a repeat into the corresponding section on the left, but I’m too lazy to take a new pic and it doesn’t look shockingly different. I’m really happy with how this is turning out! I LOVE the colors I’ve chosen and how they play with each other. I’m really glad I decided for clues 1 and 3 to go with an A, B, C, D, C, B repeat instead of an A, B, C, D repeat. While this means I’ll use more of colors B and C, I think it’s more visually appealing as I don’t really like how A and D look next to each other. I can deal with it in clue 2 because of the difference in textures, but I really don’t think I would have been happy with it in the other clues.
In clue 2, I did add a bit of a mohair dare. I had a skein of mohair in the same color as my color B, since that was from a kit which I broke up for this shawl. I held it with my color B for the eyelet rows in clue 2, which also meant the color order for that clue was A, C, B, D. It’s pretty subtle, and I’m trying to decide if and how I bring some mohair into the final clue so it’s in more than just these 6 little stripes in the shawl.
It’s not really the fault of the shawl or the pattern that I’ve fallen a little behind on this. I mean clue 3 is a little slower with all those slip stitches and needing to make sure I look at the beginning and end of each row to make sure I’m on track, but mostly it’s just a time thing. We’re about halfway through the rehearsal process for The Drowsy Chaperone, and I’m in the ensemble and costuming it. So we have rehearsal for about 3 hours 4 times a week, plus I have shopping and altering as costumes as well. So there is just less time to work on this. To complete Clue 3 on time, I would have needed to do 3,500 stitches per day and that just wasn’t in the cards this year.
Life is good otherwise though. It’s a little exhausting, but I’m enjoying being on stage for this production instead of just on the production side. I sometimes don’t feel that confident, but I feel really good about the folks I get to do this with. I knew 16 of the 18 people in this cast from previous productions, and it’s just such an amazing group to be a part of. My fellow ensemble members and I have an especially great relationship, we have a lot of fun during rehearsals. We take learning the dances and music seriously but also just enjoy spending time with each other.
Anyway, that was a bit of a rambly post but all good stuff! I hope to be back with a final update on Geogradient in a few weeks!