Tag Archive | lace knitting

Wood Sorrel Cowl

My latest FO happens to be a project I test-knit for a new pattern designer, Laura Cameron. I don’t volunteer for a lot of test-knitting because I just don’t have a ton of time, but I was really glad I made the time for this one. I ended up with a gorgeous new cowl!

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Laura’s pattern is called Wood Sorrel and is available on Ravelry now. It calls for 450-500 yards of DK or light worsted weight. She used a beautiful hand-dyed merino in a shade of green that perfectly complements the leafy lace pattern. Since I’m trying to curtail my yarn-buying, I shopped from my stash and came up with two skeins of Berroco Fiora in Tybee (aka gray).

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It’s a long cast-on but once I got that done and joined, it was smooth sailing. The lace pattern was complex enough to keep it interesting through four repeats, but not so complicated that I got confused or frustrated. As long as I mostly paid attention, I was fine. I did watch TV through a lot of it, and that worked out well enough — just don’t pick something you have to actually watch most of the time!

The pattern was attractively laid-out, well-written and clear, very easy to follow. I love that she included the written instructions as well as the chart, since I’m not a huge fan of charts.

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I followed the pattern exactly as written and used 430 yards, and my cowl is a big, wonderfully wearable double-loop scarf. I think it’ll be great for cooler spring and fall days, since the Fiora has a good amount of cotton. But I wish I’d done like Laura and chosen a pretty squishy merino in green or brown. And wool seems to have better stitch definition than this cotton blend, although I do think it turned out lovely. Don’t be surprised if you see this pattern show up again in an earthy-colored wool!

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You can see Laura’s other patterns on her Ravelry page, check out her blog here, or see what handspun yarn she’s got for sale in her Etsy shop here.

Pretty in Pink

Do you know how hard it is to photograph the color pink? It’s really hard. It might even be harder than red. I have two FOs to show off today, but I struggled to show the true beauty of the pink. It’s one of those that’s really best in person, but still, I’ll try.

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The pattern is A Noble Cowl and it was lovely to knit. Interesting lace without being too difficult. I used one of my yarn treasures from our Colorado excursion, my Baah! Sonoma in Pink Tourmaline. I love this yarn. It feels so nice in my fingers and is just firm enough to cooperate perfectly with the needles, plus it blocks out wonderfully. The colors are stunning too.

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I ran out of yarn and couldn’t do the full pattern, but I think it blocked out plenty tall enough, and I love the scalloped edge.

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My other FO is a delicious shawl.

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The pattern is called Frisson and I’ve already worn this one a couple of times.

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The yarn is Manos del Uruguay Fino, which is a merino/silk blend that is simply heavenly. I wanted to knit on this shawl every day because the yarn felt so good in my hands. And wearing it is just as delightful because it’s soft and lightweight despite its impressive length.

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That’s even one point shorter than the pattern! The knitting of this one wasn’t as easy as the cowl; I had some difficulties as I was getting started (you can read my Ravelry notes here) but once I got used to it, it was a smooth and pleasant process.

Today I’m hoping to finish the cowl I’m test-knitting, though I won’t be able to show that off for another week or so. Happy knitting, friends!

Madelia Photos

I unpinned my Madelia shawl this morning and started taking photos as soon as I got enough daylight. I just love lace, don’t you?

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The only modification to the pattern was to use DK instead of sport weight. My edge didn’t come out quite as pointy as hers, but close enough. If you don’t set it aside for two months as I did, it’s a relatively quick knit. The pattern was well-written and easy to follow (except for one bit where it says to use the right needle tip to lift a stitch over, and I think it should maybe be the left needle that’s doing the lifting). Plus it’s super easy to modify; it’s written for three colors but obviously I only did two. It would also be lovely in a solid color. And if you made it in a fingering weight, I think it would be a good size for more of a scarf look.

This morning I came to the determination that I am inspired more by yarn than by patterns. I wanted to cast on some new projects so I had more variety, and went to my stash and picked out five yarns that were calling my name. Thanks to Ravelry, a short while later I had patterns picked out for all of them and have big plans for today! … Except I just realized that none of them are a hat, and I need a hat in the mix, so I’ll be revisiting the stash in a bit. Yeah, I’ll be doubling my WIP count today. Right now I’m okay with it. We’ll see how long it lasts before I’m hit with a bout of finish-itis!

Madelia Shawl

I started and finished a shawl yesterday. Haha, NO! Not that same shawl! First, I cast on the Chevrione shawl with high hopes of making good progress this weekend. I made it through the first two sections, but it was tricky! Not that it’s really that difficult, but the lace is intricate and a little complicated and I kept making mistakes. I had to focus all my attention on it, no movies or TV, and after a couple of hours, I needed a mental break. But here’s what I’ve got so far:

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It’s really pretty and I like it and I can’t wait to get to the next color. I think it’ll go more smoothly now that I’ve gone through the chart once.

When I set aside the Chevrione, the girl and I decided to watch a movie, so I pulled out another old WIP, one that’s not mindless but is easier to follow with distractions. It’s the Madelia Shawlette by Picnic Knits that I started in September. As I finished the section I was on, I realized I only had three sections left, and each one was 12 rows or fewer. So close to the end! Suddenly my goal was to finish this project.

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I knit my way through West Side Story, Moulin Rouge, and the evening news, and at 10:30 I finally set aside the completed shawl. And this morning I got up, wove in the ends, and blocked the sucker.

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Here’s a close-up of the lace. I think blocking is going to make a huge difference in this one. When I was done binding off, I wasn’t sure I liked it, but it’s growing on me now.

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So with that done, I had 4 WIPs: three shawls and a blanket. Well, that wasn’t going to work for me. I need more variety in my knitting life. Fortunately, I was saved by a friend’s request for two pussyhats. I did a bit of stash-diving and came up with an assortment of pink yarn, and had a nearly finished hat after a viewing of The Time Traveler’s Wife.

Now I’ve had a workout and a snack break, and I’m ready to dive back in. The goal is to have two completed pussyhats by the end of the day. I think I can, I think I can, I think I can!

Two Pink Hats

These are the only finished objects I have to show you this week, two pink kitty hats. They are cute. I like them.

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They were supposed to be for me and my daughter, but then a friend of a friend needed two hats for the March on Washington, and I was more than happy to send these her way and make more for us. I used AndreSue Knits’ pattern for the KitKat hat and KnitPicks Preciosa Tonal in Pokeberry. I was able to get two hats and another brim out of one skein, and I’ve got more on the way. (And if you don’t know anything about what these hats mean, check out www.pussyhatproject.com)

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Wow. That’s a very large photo of my face. Second guessing that selection now.

I did find and attach buttons for my Gothic Lace cowl, and I’m delighted with how that turned out. I’ve already worn it to work and gotten several compliments on it.

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My only (very small) regret is that the silver buttons I chose, which I adore, are a bit heavy for the cowl, so it’s a little hard to wear. I very much want to make another one of these with lighter buttons.

Anyway, while I wait for my pink yarn to arrive, I needed something new and exciting for my weekend of knitting. Not only do I get Monday off for the Martin Luther King, Jr. day, but we also have an ice storm warning, so yay for three days of solid knitting! Last night I wound my Frolicking Feet gradient set and cast on for the Chevrione shawl.

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I didn’t get far because we started watching a movie and this is not movie-watching knitting. But I’m hoping to make good progress today! My only question is whether I should have started with the darkest teal instead of the lightest…hmm. What do you think?

One Done, Two Begun

Here, let me show you something I finished! I actually finished it a few days ago but was slow getting around to taking a halfway decent photo.

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This is my Quickie Scowl. I used Classic Elite Chalet and Chateau, two skeins of teal and one of light gray, and that wasn’t enough. It’s shorter than I wanted. I blame it on needle size. The pattern calls for 10 1/2; when I made it the first time, I used 10s (no idea why), and this time I chose 10.75 because I wanted to use my fun Marblez needles and I thought the size would be close enough. And I do love the loose drape and the nice big yarnovers, but of course it’s wider than my first scarf, so with the same amount of yarn, it’s also shorter. I thought about sewing the ends together for a cowl which would be long enough to double, but I asked my daughter and she voted for a scarf, so a scarf it stayed. And it is a cozy, warm, close-fitting scarf indeed!

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I did start two new projects yesterday, the ones calling my name, and boy are they fun! First I cast on for the Miss Winkle with my hot pink Frolicking Feet. It’s a Martina Behm pattern so there’s plenty of squishy garter stitch but also this nifty looped edge that is super addictive.

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It’s also super hard to photograph! It was a little tricky to figure out, and I’m pretty sure I did the first one wrong, but eh, it’s a design feature, right? At first I thought I’d get annoyed by the fiddly nature of it, but it turns out I’m loving knitting this and want to keep going just to make more loops!

My second cast-on was the Gothic Lace cowl in MadTosh Vintage and that’s a delightful knit too. The yarn is thick and squishy and slides just right on my bamboo needles and the lace makes me think without being too complicated, and bonus: when it’s done I’ll get to pick out buttons to add!

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And thankfully, the rest of my weekend is pretty empty, so I should get to work on these quite a bit. But once I get started on the margaritas tonight, I’ll probably switch back to the simple Hill & Dale cowl.

I think that’s a wrap for my 2016 blogging. See you on the flip side, and here’s wishing you all a happy, safe New Year’s Eve!

The Call of the Yarn

I have four sad WIPs that I have been neglecting. I have allowed myself to become distracted by all the new, pretty yarn entering my stash. I want to knit ALL the things with the new yarn. I’m quickly filling up my Ravelry queue with potential projects and am slowed only by having to go back to work. I’ve already started one new project, with some yarn I bought right after Christmas. I got two skeins of Malabrigo Rios in Archangel, and wanted a simple pattern to show off the gorgeous colors. I love cowls and wear them almost every day, so that was the easy decision. After much perusing, I settled on the Hill & Dale Cowl, a generously-sized cowl that will make perfect lunch-break knitting.

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As always, I’m loving knitting with Malabrigo. But I’m also itching to cast on a Chevrione shawl with my new Frolicking Feet gradient set. I haven’t done any fingering weight lace in ages and I’m craving it!

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Plus I’m desperate to make a Miss Winkle shawl, and I think this pink Frolicking Feet  will be perfect. (I’m sensing a theme here.) I also have this gorgeous skein of Madelinetosh Tosh Vintage waiting to become this Gothic Lace cowl.

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See?? So many beautiful projects just waiting for my attention! The pull of these yarns is so strong that I’m even ignoring a Malabrigo Hitchhiker already on my needles! That’s pretty significant…but hm, maybe I should get that back out…hmm, how many WIPs is a reasonable number?