Tuesday, April 16, 2013

More adventures with yarn

I was suddenly compelled to start blogging again, mostly because I want to jabber on about knitting, and I know very few people in real life anymore who want to listen to that. I can tell by the glazed-over expression on most of my friends' eyes that it's time to stop.
Sari silk yarn from Nepal, toted over by a girl I know. She brought huge bags over, and everybody I know who is even remotely interested in yarn has some. It looks pretty, but I still haven't figured out anything to knit with it in the three years I've had it. Maybe it should just stay in a ball, looking pretty.
So here I go, for all of you and none of you. I'm currently in the middle of three test knits -- a lacy pullover in black linen, a cabled toe-up sock (very near completion), and a pair of fingerless mitts (just restarted in this yarn, not this pattern). And since I bound off one sweater that I was testing today, well, that meant casting on two more. In addition to the one I cast on in anticipation of binding off the first. Yes, folks -- I am a three-for-one knitter. That explains why about 30 percent of the projects on my Ravelry profile are WIPs. I reckon I shouldn't mention the shrug and the mesh pullover I cast on a couple weeks ago and have already lost a lot of interest in. I'm blaming the sudden weather change, at least for my lack of interest in that boucle shrug. Oh yeah. And then there's the summer cardigan I'm knitting for the current China Knitters Group KAL. That one should be a quickie, though, and is weather appropriate for at least the next few months.

This is the sweater I finished today -- a simple colorblocked pullover. The gray is an alpaca/wool blend I purchased online from Shanghai, and the lilac (is that the name of this color?) is a souvenir skein of hand-dyed sock yarn I purchased in Toronto last summer.

Next in my queue: Picking up my Plain and Simple Pullover that I started as a KAL with the China Knitters Group on Ravelry two autumns ago. It's in Colourmart merino that I received in a swap from a British knitter, and the yarn is really lovely to work with. However, I'm concerned about my gauge. I started it when I didn't know all that much about gauge, and I believe that yarn is meant to be DK whereas the pattern gauge is 28 st = 4" on light fingering weight yarn. According to my Ravelry notes I was getting gauge, but I'm wondering if the fabric is going to be too stiff. I recall that I washed my swatch, so the bloom characteristic of mill end yarns should be accounted for. I guess I'll have to pull it out of its carefully sealed fake Ziploc and inspect. The other reservation I have with this pattern now, years after casting on, is the sleeves. Cap sleeves really do not do my broad shoulders any favors. So I've been browsing the projects page for this pattern and noticed a project with full sleeves that had been added on by picking up the stitches around the armholes. That might be an option for me, and I might do well to do the sleeves in the gray I was using for the stripes; I have plenty of that.  

Future queue: I'd like to work up something like this Billy B Tank, but probably in not quite as heavy yarn. I would also modify the straps to be thinner and make the whole thing longer -- crop tops are not so flattering on my short torso. I like the loose-gauge look of this pattern as well as the use of several yarns, and the reverse stockinette. Looks like a good way to use up some odds and ends of cotton that I have, perhaps by holding several strands together.

No comments: