Saturday, October 30, 2010
One of the big buzz yarns that all the knitter types were chattering about at Rhinebeck was Jared Flood's Shelter. I'll admit that I hadn't heard tell of it before then, but being the lemming that I am, once I heard 'unbelievable colors' and 'tweed that isn't as scratchy as it could be', I knew that Shelter and I had a date with destiny. So I ordered one lonely skein on a trial basis and I can say that I will definitely be back for more in the future. Once acquired, I trolled around Ravelry for the perfect one skein project, and came up with a pattern that I not only already owned but had specially colored coded with my handy colored pencils: Habitat!
Pattern: Habitat by Brooklyn Tweed
Yarn: Shelter in 'Sap', one skein exactly
Needles: sizes 6 & 7
Mods: None at all, although I did have a misstep. I knit the first 15 rows without realizing that I had neglected to do chart A. As my kids would say 'durrrr'...so yeah, instead of trying to wing it, I did the adult thing by frogging and starting over.
Right away I had the sense that I wouldn't have enough yarn for a size L so I decided to ding it down to S/M. Phew! So glad I did as I had less than 5 yards left. The result is a perfect snug little hat.
My first foray with this pattern was done with Shelter's polar opposite, Malabrigo. It made for a hat that was poofty and lofty whereas this iteration is quite the opposite. I have to say that both versions have their charms, but I am slightly partial to this one as the color is a mind-blower. Do you remember the most fabulously beloved but now discontinued color of Felted Tweed 'Pickle'? (what--you don't have all the Felted Tweed colors available in your mind for immediate recall?) It's reminiscent of that luscious green but with flecks of orange as well. Simply put, it's perfection.
I am so happy to have refound my knitting inspiration. I am back to that happy place where I think about knitting like it's my job and text back and forth with Babs about what out next (knitting) move is. Because of this increased activity and enthusiasm, I have more small accessories in the pipeline, so stay tuned because I am cranking. them. OUT!
Tuesday, October 26, 2010
After a series of miscalculations as to how long it actually takes to knit two sleeves and a collar [answer: longer than a car ride from PA to NY], this year's Rhinebeck sweater did not make its debut at the ball but instead languished in inchoate agony back in the hotel room. No matter, it's done now and is ready for cool weather action.
Pattern: Vine Lace Top-Down Cardigan by Sweaterbabe
Yarn: Rowan Cocoon, 7.5 skeins. The other .5 was sacrificed to my cat and his special libidinal needs [see below].
Needles: size 11
Mods: None really except for inadvertent mistakes...like getting it sopping wet during the blocking process and the sweater getting so stretched out and heavy that the stitches became deformed and resembled chain mail, so much so that you needed to put it in the dryer and it felted ever so slightly...yeah that.
I've made this pattern before and it's a complete winner. If you're looking for a big, giant cardigan, this is your next project. It basically took 10 days of on and off knitting, with time out for various other projects [hint: I got LOTS in the pipeline, YO].
My cat has confirmed what I thought I detected in him a year ago when I knitted my Heather Hoodie in Rowan Cocoon, and that is he takes a special shine to this yarn. Which is to say that he seems to like having private sexytimes with it as on more than one occasion I have caught him hugging and cuddling the skein as if it were a giant blow up doll. Yes, Mr. Kitten has been caught red handed trying to get it on with some Cocoon. Such a nasty little culprit.
Aww....sorry kitten, you're going to have to take your business elsewhere because this is a respectable family establishment! This sweater is not your own private pleasure pad, mkay?
Wednesday, October 13, 2010
I must say the extent to which I go to play games with myself is truly astounding. From the outset I declared this project a shawlette and not a shawl in order to take the pressure off. What--I can finish a shawlette in four week days. Piece o'cake! Such are the deluded machinations of a person who casts on for a wedding present during an especially busy work week as she has promised the wrap for the bride to wear at the reception. Which is being held outdoors in October. In Minnesota. Heh.
Pattern: Textured Shawl Recipe by Orlane
Needles: size 9
Yarn: Madeline Tosh DK in Oxblood, exactly one skein.
Mods: It's $^&$ small, how that for a mod? But it doesn't matter because when you lower the bar from the height of shawl down to the very pedestrian and quite doable shawlette, it doesn't matter. I win!
Seriously,my intention all along was for her to wear this more as a scarf anyway. It's small, yes, but will look ultra cute as a
cat poncho gamine-like scarf tied ever so fashionably around her neck. I'm declaring it a success.
The yarn is an utter joy to behold. Soft beyond all measure. The color is also so rich that when I spied it on the table at the yarn store, the employee gave me a knowing glance that basically said "I know, right?". Wowza.
This pattern is truly the most adaptable shawl(ette) pattern out there. You are the master of your own destiny as you decided exactly how big you want it to be. Which is perfect for impatient knitters who just want bind off already, dammit. In my case this was at 5 am the morning of the service, which was itself in the morning. But I did finish in time to do a photo shoot at the hotel pool (sad) and give it to my niece at the reception. And she's such a gracious, obliging lassie that she cooed and oohed and awwed over it, just like her auntie wanted her to.
The visit to Minneapolis was short and somewhat bittersweet. That was my last 'scheduled' visit there as there are no big events coming up and my mom has been successfully moved . A friend asked me if that was tough on me, and I have to say that it isn't. I believe in making your life work wherever you are, and yearnings of a geographical nature rarely bring fulfillment. I had the most stupendous childhood there, and am fortunate to have all the those happy memories. So I say congratulations to J and L, we're so happy for you! And I'll see the rest of you lot at Rhinebeck (hopefully)!