Most of what I worked on while I was away was a truly secret yarnination project.
I've been asked to be a test knitter!
This makes me very bouncy.
For those who aren't familiar with the term: When a designer completes a pattern, he generally has the pattern tech edited to make sure there are no errors (e.g. if the instructions say "CO 45 [55, 65, 75, 5, 95]" there is probably a typo in that second-largest size!).
If said designer is able to (and conscientious enough to consider it), she arranges for the pattern to be test knit in one or more sizes by various knitters. These knitters uncover problems with the fit, clarity issues in the pattern, and possibly catch typos the tech editor didn't catch.
Sundara Yarn (y'all know I'm a huge fan of her yarn!) is working with a designer, Melissa Wehrle, to develop custom patterns for her yarn. The first pattern is a kimono-style cardigan using her sport-weight yarn. I was extremely lucky to be asked to test knit, presumably because I'd bought a lot of Sundara's yarn before and because I'd sent her photos of various things I'd made. Sundara dyed yarn to my color specs and gave me the yarn; I get to keep the sweater, I just have to knit it and send my comments. This, my friends, is a screamin' deal for a process knitter like myself. Heck, I don't even care if the finished sweater doesn't fit me or doesn't look good on me — I'm loving this project!
I was originally supposed to finish the garment by August 21. I got a bit nervous this weekend, because I had only hit the 50% point last Friday. I knit like a madwoman all weekend and was beginning to get a little cramped in the hand, when I logged in on Sunday afternoon and found out the deadline's been extended! This is a huge relief (I think I'm about at 65-70% done now), but I'll still get the thing done soon — it's very fun to knit. The stitch pattern is just complex enough to keep it interesting, but just repetitive enough to do while chatting, watching TV or even reading. PERFECT.
I'm not allowed to show you very much of the project, so here it is in a blurry pile. The thing insisted on flash, so this is a bit lighter/brighter than the reality, but it's probably close to what the colors will look like after washing: