So I'm making great progress on my little shrug .. done all the pieces, knitting the front band. I picked up 112 stitches along the right front and did a knit/purl ribbing, only to realize I messed up the k/p on the 6th stich. Ok, undo it and start again. Picked up the same 112 stitches again. Got to the collar and was having trouble with really tight stitches. I went on to ravelry to see if there were tips for my particular problem and lo and behold - I have been picking up stitches wrong my whole life!!! I have been reading "pick up and knit" as "pick up" hence the reason for my tight stitches. Ok, have to do it right. Undo again. Finally, I picked up (and knit) about 275 stitches and have officially started the front band! Whew! It took me about 3 hours and my fingers were killing me but it makes so much more sense than the way I was doing it before.
On another note, although I like the way the shrug is turning out, I think if I did it again I would use a more drapey yarn like the silk that was intended for it, or a bamboo/linen/etc type yarn. The shrug does not actually sit on the chest, it kind of hugs the sides of it so it would look nicer if it sort of draped over - I am worried it might end up bunching up on the sides instead. We'll see I guess.
Received my RYC cashmere yarn in the mail yesterday, very lovely! Will start my gift gloves soon.