I am, for once, actually blocking my knitting.

I’m terrible at doing this last finishing step. I have several shawls which need blocking, but those are big projects and I can’t quite bring myself to crack open the blocking pads, get the shawl damp, then crawl around on the floor pinning everything out. Because the next step isn’t waiting for the item to dry. No, it will be keeping the cats away from the object so they don’t decide the pins I have oh-so-carefully put in place are there for their amusements to bat around. 

I’d shut them out but for the fact the space which is big enough for blocking a big item is my office. Which is in the library. Which, being the former living room, has no door. I could use the TV room, which has a pocket door on one end — but my father-in-law listened to the contractor and removed the door between it and the laundry area just off the kitchen when he semi-remodeled seven years ago. Which means the cats would just go around. (It also means the washer and dryer tend to drown out the television unless you crank it up because there’s nothing to block the noise. This will be fixed at some point.)

White knitted yarn pinned to a mat for blocking.But what I’m blocking today is small, and I could put the single mat I’m using on my desk to do the pinning. No crawling around on the floor, and I could set it atop the bookcases which line one wall of the room near the heating vent. When the heat comes on, it will help with the drying. It’s not right under the vent, so the heat’s not directly blowing on the fabric. But it should be finished in an hour or so and I’ll be able to unpick the threads, leaving a nice, crinkly gnome beard. That little cluster of pins at the top is the bobble which forms the nose. I’ve mushed it into shape so it will dry as I’d like it to.

Looking at this, I’m thinking I really do need to pull out the rest of playmats I bought at the Toys R Us closing sale, and block my leaf wreath shawl. Just before lockdown began in LA last March, I frogged what I’d knit so far and began again. Shawl is now finished, save for the blocking. Maybe next week. In the meantime, I’m going to wait for my beard to dry.

Until next time, stay safe, stay healthy.