Knitting That's Been Happening

I've been sharing a lot of my drawings but knitting has been happening too.

Here are two finished objects I created while out of town and a work in progress.

First: on a whim, and out of necessity, I whipped up this quick little ukulele strap. My youngest has enjoyed taking up this instrument, so much so that he took it with him on our recent trips. He played it in the airport, on top of a mountain, in a hotel lobby, on a beach, on a was in his hands for much of the trip. To free up his hands while walking with it I knit up this strap. It's small and the pattern was easy so I had this done and on his ukulele in no time. A perfect project for vacation. I want to weave him another one using my tablet loom.

While on vacation I also took along this pattern and some bamboo yarn from my stash. I knitted most of this while on the beach so I wanted this shawl to be a spring/summer shawl that is reminiscent of the waves. I'm pretty happy with it. My only issue with it is that it drapes a little heavier than I had hoped and my gauge was very loose. That is a constant issue for me even if I do a swatch. I think I should just always go down two needles sizes. Oh, and Rocket thinks everything I knit is a new bed for him.

And, finally I've been working on this shawl. Oh man this one is giving me trouble. I really like how it looks; I like the color combinations, I like how my gauge isn't too loose on this one etc...I just like it. However, I can't seem to get it in line with the pattern. It's very frustrating. I sit and focus and follow every stitch and somehow end up with the wrong number of stitches on my needles. That messed up the lace pattern section. (Which you don't really know if you are messing up lace until you've finished the section.) So I finished the lace section, realized it was wrong, adjusted my stitches so I had the right number the pattern called for, hyper focused on each step of the pattern, checked the stitches again before entering a different section and found I was way off on the number of stitches, again! IDK, that last section was easy without any stitches I didn't feel confident with, I have no idea why the numbers would be off. I think I will strictly use big name, commercial patterns for my next few pieces while I'm learning and save indie designers for the future when I have more experience. Then if there's something confusing, I'll be better prepared to work through it. 

I was trying to figure out what I wanted to do about this piece now. Do I rip it out, keep trying to follow the pattern, put it aside and start one of the gazillion awesome projects I've been dying to cast on?  I do like how it looks and I really want to try to get that lace section right in the upcoming sections. So... I've decided I'm going to continue the piece but improvise. I'm done following the numbers on the pattern and will just adjust as needed for the stitch count of the lace pattern. I'll logically work through it instead of literally follow every step.