...but still no pictures. I'm sorry!!!
I did a lot of shopping this week. I have been very good about not buying more yarn, but I had excuses to fall down and I fell hard.
Purchase the first: Sweet Lace in Snow Squall for the Whispering Pines triangle shawl.
Purchase the second: Fiddlesticks Knitting Zephyr Laceweight Wool Silk in Marine
Purchase the third: Lots of beads
Purchase the first is for a Christmas present. Purchase the second and third are for Mystery Shawl 4. Since I didn't have the yarn in person and I wasn't looking at beads in person, I ordered several options for beads, figuring that beads are inexpensive and that I would likely end up using them for something eventually. Also, I am indecisive.
I wanted a silk blend for the mystery stole because the instructions say stitch definition will be important, so I wanted something with a little sheen. I chose Marine because Scheherazade is burgandy, the Moonlight Sonata shawl I am working on is dark dark navy, and I have some green Lacey Lamb in the stash that I plan to use for an Icarus shawl, so I figured Marine was a color category I hadn't gotten yet. I really wavered between picking Marine or Pewter, though - to me, Pewter would have been a safe choice because I could have worn it with a lot and I could have picked any color bead. However, picking a color bead would have made it wearable with less, and I couldn't find any silver or metalic type beads that I was really happy with. But, really, the kicker is that safe is boring and I didn't want to be bored.
I really could have gone about this whole process better, I know - the knitalong doesn't even start for a month and I had plenty of time to mull it over, pick a yarn, wait for it to arrive, find a local bead shop, try out combos, etc - but, half the fun of a mystery stole is the uncertainty, and a) if you're going to gamble, why not gamble big? b) Might as well go with your first instinct because thinking it over too hard really can't do you that much good when you're working with limited instructions anyway.
Now my only problem is finding a size 13 crochet hook for the beads. My LYS didn't have one even close to that size, and the smallest Michael's had was a size 10 (and, having looked at it, I'm kind of freaked out to think that's too big).
I am aware, at this point, that I am kind of spiraling into WIP hell - I get nervous when I have too many things on the needles for too long. I don't think there's anything wrong with having multiple projects, but there is some kind of malfunction in my brain that puts me in an absolute panic if I have a bunch of things going on for too long. There's a little timer in my brain that starts running when I hit a certain number of projects, and if I haven't checked off some boxes before it runs out, I start to freak and it's not pretty.
One consolation is that I'm not finished shopping yet. One of my friends has requested, for Christmas, a pair of fingerless mitts for use in her office. I'm thinking I'm going to do the Orchid Lace mits from knitspot for her in a really decadent yarn. I'm looking at a silk-cashmere blend that I think would be perfect, if only I could get it in a color I think would suit her. The mitts take so little yarn I can afford to splurge on something nice for her - especially since it will come out of my Christmas fund so it doesn't count as being bad.
Now I just have to wait for my purchases to arrive...that's always the hardest part. I plan to use this time to try and get some stuff off my needles so that I don't feel too overwhelmed when I get ready to start the Christmas shawl and the mystery stole.