Raindrops keep falling on my head…

May 26th, 2014 § 0 comments § permalink

“But that doesn’t mean my eyes will soon be turning red…” because I have plans.  I haven’t been blogging too much as of late due to some rather frustrating chronic pain flare-ups preventing me from doing any kinds of crafts.  My ongoing ribbing project of DOOM is still in a state of stasis (alliteration FTW!) and has been giving me side-eye (if a knitted item could do so) and taunting me with thoughts of “YOU STILL NEED TO KNIT A WHOLE ‘NOTHER MITT LADY!”  Ah, the dreaded second-mitt-syndrome.  One of these days I’m going to learn how to do 2-at-a-time in the round projects for mitts/socks.

So even though I can’t craft much due to pain, I can still plan.  And I do have plans, lovelies…

Firstly, I think its high time that I knit myself another pair of socks.  Its been awhile since I knitted myself socks – the last pair I knit were from summer/fall of 2012!  One contender for these socks is Wraptor (free pattern from Knitty).  I have lots of self-striping sock yarn, and this would be a good project for stash-busting.  They will be a challenging knit as they are constructed flat on a diagonal and then knitted together.  They do look oh-so cool though!  Observe:

Wraptor – wrap your head around these!

My second choice is Paraphernalia (free Ravelry download) which would look good in a solid colour (and I just happen to have a lovely skein of plum-coloured sock yarn that I could use).  Probably more straight-forward than the Wraptors, but still classy with all those cables. Check em out:

Paraphernalia socks

I have other sock patterns in my queue (28 in all!), but these are the two that stand out to me.  The jury is out which I shall knit though.  Feel free to bribe the judge  😉

In other news, I’m planning a 3 month sojourn to Ireland, Portual, and Spain starting this August.  And I thought that I should have a knitting project to take with me on the road.  So I thought, why not make a “travelling sweater?”  It would take me almost that long to knit it and I would be able to wear the thing if I finish it before I come home.

The sweater: “Raindrops” by Tin Can Knits (Ravelry link).  I think its a flattering shape and would fit my body type well.  I’m going to do it pretty much in the same colour, only I’ll probably be using something like Cascade Heritage Sock in hyacinthe rather than Sweet Georgia’s yarn.  Here’s a view of the back of the sweater:

Raindrops

My first stop of my trip is London, England where I’ll be meeting my penpal & fellow Raveller Gavin to take in a few days of museums and yes, yarn shopping.  Its possible I may find a yarn for this sweater in London, but it may be better to play it safe and order the yarn while I’m still in Canada.  Then I’ll be in Ireland for about 2.5 weeks before heading to warmer climes in Portugal and Spain.  I don’t foresee buying yarn on the trip, but who knows?  I could find an amazing knit & stitch shop somewhere and fall in love with exotic yarns that I cannot source in Canada.

If anyone knows of any “must-see” things in Portugal/Spain, please leave a comment below.  Suggestions for yarn shops included!

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Lightening up with Lace

May 2nd, 2014 § 0 comments § permalink

Spring and summer are times of lightening up, shedding layers, and embracing the warmer days ahead.  It stands to reason then, that knitting should also “lighten up” during these sunny months.  Its no fun dragging around a wool sweater project that weighs what feels like a metric ton in one’s bag, and making one sweat while it sits in one’s lap during knitting.  Yuck!

Enter, lace.  Lace is basically any fabric that has an open “weave” to it (or to put it in low-brow terms: has holes in it 😉 ).  According to the Lace Guild, what we know as lace came into existence during the 16th Century CE.  For knitters and crocheters, lace is fast and fun and can be very simple to OMG complex depending on the person’s skill level.  Here’s and example of “easy lace” (based on a Ravelry pattern search):

Bias Scarf – easy lace (skill level 1 out of 10)

And here’s and example of OMG-I’m-losing-my-sanity-so-complex! lace:

Lilie tablecloth (skill level 9 or 10 out of 10)

And yet, both of these projects utilize the same lace components to make an airy fabric that is just gorgeous.  Knitting, purling, increase/decrease, and Yarn Overs (or YO for you non-knitting folk) is all you really need to make this fabric.

I self-identify as an intermediate knitter, but I didn’t want to put my head through the wall with a complicated lace project.  I wanted something that would be kind of instant-gratification-like and chose to make an infinity scarf for my dear friend Lalla.  Truth be told, Lalla was over at my house for tea and saw a skein of stunning Indigo Dragonfly Italian silk lace that she draped around her neck.  I knew it was game-over when she co-oped the yarn….I would have to knit something for her.  But really, I don’t mind because the colour looked amazing on her skin tone.  I simply had to knit her something.

Here’s the finished project as it was blocking:

Lace cowl blocking for maximum awesomeness!

And here’s a few on Lalla herself:

Infinity cowl – single drapey loop

Cowl doubled over for maximum warmth

Lalla absolutely loves her infinity scarf and has been wearing it almost daily and showing it off to everyone.  Huzzah!

Project Notes:

  • Pattern name: Palessie Cowl by Diana Rozenshteyn (paid pattern on Ravelry)
  • Yarn used: Indigodragonfly Silk D’Italia in Baldersquash colourway
  • Yardage out: 308 yards (with points for stashdown – huzzah!)
  • Needles: 3.75mm 24″ circular needles
  • Total days of knitting: 23 days
  • Skills employed: basic lace with grafting (Kitchener stitch) in pattern.
  • Project page here

 

I’m still working on the neverending rib project, and hope to finish the first mitt this weekend (hmm, perhaps I’m being optimistic) and get on with the second mitt.  I’m trying to be project-monogamous these days to ensure I carry out to completion my projects…but sometimes its nice to think about (or work on) other projects.  The next project that I will be working on will be a fingering weight sweater for myself, but more on that later.

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