See if you can follow this. I'm kind of fuzzy-brained tonight, so I apologize if it's a bit incoherent.
Back in 2005, my friend Kristen went to Russia for a year to continue her studies in Russian art. She read in the blog that I had purchased the book A Gathering of Lace and some yarn in order to knit the Faux Russian Stole. She thought it was a shame that I might be using non-Russian yarn to knit a Russian stole. She sent me several skeins of authentic Russian yarn with which to knit it.
Here's a photo of the yarn and the chocolate she sent me way back when:
That's gossamer-weight Russian yarn, the kind they use for their lovely Orenburg shawls.
My inability to knit lace is well established. I was going to say "legendary," but that would probably be symptomatic of delusions of grandeur, as if anybody really cares or something, so I'll stick with "well established."
So of course the yarn sat languishing in my stash all these years.
But, as has been well documented in my blog as well as her own and several others, Cookie's ability to knit lace IS legendary. After she completed the last gorgeous lace thing for me, she said something to the effect of "What do you want next." The woman is a crazy machine, honestly! I feel quite certain that if any of us were to meet her in person, we would actually find a robot and not a sentient being, but that is neither here nor there. She knits lace. A lot. And faster than a speeding bullet! Who am I to argue? Ya know? I mean, yeah, I'll take it off her hands -- or her needles, if you will. I have no qualms. I feel I'm doing her a service, really: It gives her something to kvetch about, ya know? (Stop repeating "delusions of grandeur." Or was that another voice in my head?)
Anyhoo, Cookie has this intractable and unmitigated love of pink, which I try not to hold against her too much, and I'm not so sure how she feels about orange in general. I don't think her opinion of orange is so high. So I pussyfoot around her for a bit and I say, "Would it make you retch too much if you had to knit -- orange? And lots of it?" I tried to soften the idea by suggesting that perhaps I will overdye it to become a richer shade of orange or red afterward, not that this would help her gag reflex much during the knitting, but I thought it might palliate the pain.
Imagine my surprise when she immediately accepted! She asked what pattern. I said I already had the pattern -- the Faux Russian Stole -- and I explained to her the provenance of the yarn. She was all over it.
Look what arrived in the mail yesterday:
Highly orange. (The color in this photo is quite spot-on accurate)
The photos below don't show the color well, but show some of the stinkingly gorgeous Russian-style garter lace that that girl (or robot or whatever she is) just whipped right out in no time flat.
Cookie held the yarn TRIPLED -- yes, I said tripled -- to knit this stole. Can you believe that? I can't.
As for the orange, I am pretty steadfast in my love of orange, but I still felt certain that when I received it I would want to overdye it to tone it down somehow. However, at least in the evening light in which I see it right now, I LOVE it. I'm wearing it as I type this, and it seems to look very nice against my skin tones. The color makes me happy, as orange often does.
The fourth friend in this story is Joan. She did a knitalong with Cookie of the same stole, but hers is in blue. I really doubt that Cookie needed any help, but I thank you anyway, Joan, for being her knit buddy in this project.