Tag Archive | lace knitting

Two socks done

I had a few hours of waiting time today, and the best thing to do during waiting time is knit. And since I had two socks almost done, finishing them seemed perfect. So I have a complete 80s sock:

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This yarn is Show Me Yarn Bootheel in the color Hit Me With Your Best Shot.

And I have a complete Guildhall Yard sock:

+ldyup7rrvwqnbnj4hjpvaIsn’t that lace panel stunning? I swear, I’m so in awe of knitting designers who can create such pretty things! This one is from Jem and Under the Olive Tree Knits, and it was a test knit so I’ll have to let you know when it’s live.

Now, do I cast on second socks, or work on one of my other WIPs?? Hm….

Knitting in the new year

When I sat down to think about my knitting for the new year, I had two options. 1: I could focus on my five current WIPs, which include one review project with a deadline. Or 2: I could cast on new project(s)! I really thought I was going to focus on the current ones, that adding more to the mix would just be overwhelming. But then I was sitting in my craft room and I started playing with my pretty yarn and before I knew it, I was winding four skeins of yarn. By the end of the day on January 1st, I had three new projects on my needles. (The fourth is a paid pattern so I’m waiting until payday to start that one.)

First up is a basic ribbed beanie which will get a beautiful furry purple pompom. But I’ve got nine inches of ribbing to knit, so this will be a good carry-around project. Yarn is Jasper from Primrose Yarn Co. in the color Mischief Managed, and the pattern is Standing Rock Hat.

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Then I had to cast on a sock with my amazing 80s yarn from Show Me Yarn, called Hit Me With Your Best Shot. OMG I love this so much, and I love that the stripes are different widths and that they change so often. This is crazy addictive. I kind of made up a pattern, with a 1×1 ribbed cuff and a 3×1 ribbed leg.

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Finally, this is my favorite of the three, even as much as I love the new sock. This yarn is Manos del Uruguay Alegria (I told you I love their yarn) and the color is Locura Fluo. It is STUNNING. I chose a lacy shawl pattern called Wave and it’s also very addictive. It alternates between lace and garter stripes so it hasn’t gotten boring yet.

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Now, it will be interesting to see if/when I can make myself go back to my old WIPs! Who else has cast on new projects already?

Gift cowl

I got to give a knitted gift yesterday! And they liked it! AND they wore it all day! This is clear proof that this person is knit-worthy, but I will wait to knit more for them because I don’t want to scare them and let them know make them think I’m crazy. I wasn’t planning on making them a gift, but I found the yarn in my stash and it basically screamed their name. The colors are just perfect for them.

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This is the Growing Leaves cowl and I had to cross my fingers when I blocked it. See, I didn’t follow the instructions to decrease the last two rows because I thought, why would I want it get smaller?? Well. Because the bind off edge is kind of big and floppy if you don’t! Thankfully, it blocked out nice and even and gorgeous.

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The yarn is Knit Picks Chroma Fingering in Vermont. I don’t like this yarn for socks because it’s so fuzzy and sticky, but it does make a lovely cowl!

Weekend Cowls

This weekend was kind to me, giving me lots of knitting time. The girl and I watched movies Friday night and I got most of a cowl done that night. (We watched The Greatest Showman and Lady Bird, and both were just Eh for me.)

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The second one was a Sunday project, mostly done while watching Everest (really good!) and the last half of Toy Story 3. I had to do this one in daylight because OMG black yarn.

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Obviously it’s still drying and I wasn’t patient enough to wait for it to dry before taking photos. The yarn for both is Cascade Baby Alpaca and the pattern is Flor de Maio. I didn’t do as many pattern repeats as the pattern called for, but I think they’re still a good wearable size. Hope the recipients like them!

And now that those are done, I am free to play with the yarn that came in the mail today!

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Meet Me at the Station Shawl

I have a finished shawl to show you, and the best part is that the pattern is now live and you can knit one too! This is the Meet Me at the Station Shawl by Under the Olive Tree Knits, and I loved testing it.

img_8116It’s designed to be a one-skein shawl, but as you may remember, I had issues and ran out of yarn too soon. To be fair, I did not check gauge before I started knitting, so I accept full responsibility. And in any case, I’m glad it happened because the cream lace is perfect with the dark green body.

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The pattern is clear and well-written, and Jem provides plenty of photos and tutorials as well. My knitting experience was smooth and happy, and I’d love to knit this again, maybe in one color like I intended!

Pattern: Meet Me at the Station by Olive Tree Knits

Yarns: Araucania Huasco Multy Botany Lace in Hunter, Cascade Heritage in Snow

See my Ravelry project page here.

Yak Yarn! A review

When I think of fiber for knitting, obviously wool is the first to come to mind. Then silk, alpaca, cotton, nylon, acrylic, bamboo…there are so many options! But I confess that I had never thought about knitting with yak fiber. So when I was given the chance to review the Lhasa Wilderness from Bijou Basin Ranch, and I saw that it’s 75% Tibetan Yak and 25% bamboo, I thought it would be a great way to broaden my horizons, and maybe yours too!

I’d heard of Bijou Basin Ranch before, but never knew that it’s a small family-owned yak ranch in Colorado. I mean…yak? For yarn? Who knew?? Not me, anyway! They have registered, full-blooded Tibetan yaks and they harvest their coats once a year. I had to google “Tibetan yak” to see what they look like, and they are impressive animals!

Anyway, enough about animals: BBR supports other small businesses by using indie dye houses for their yarns. I chose a colorway called Fantasy, dyed by Colorful Eclectic, and I was so excited when my package arrived! It was beautifully put together with several extra goodies, including a mobius scarf pattern, a handy To-Do list, a sticker (which I immediately put on my Ikea knitting cart) and a pretty stitch marker. The presentation made a great first impression. To me, it shows that they really appreciate their customers.

The colors were lighter than I was expecting, based on the photos on the website. I thought the pink would be a darker fuschia; overall it seemed a bit watered down from the colors I saw online. But I know that colors can vary with hand-dyed yarn, and can look different in person than online. Plus, it is still beautiful, and so soft! I don’t know what I was expecting from yak, but it felt very much like a premium cotton, only even softer. It’s very smooth, feels silky running through my fingers. I’m guessing the bamboo is what reminds me of cotton, and the yak provides that delicious silky softness.

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Though they generously sent me a pattern, I chose a shawl/cowl pattern that I knew I’d wear more often called the Lace Eyelet Cowl. It calls for fingering weight, and while Ravelry lists the Lhasa Wilderness as Sport, it’s definitely a light sport and can be substituted for fingering without much trouble. My 250-yard skein was plenty of yarn and the knitting sailed by without a hitch. The yarn knits a bit like cotton, so it did sometimes split more easily than wool, and there’s less give when you’re working lace like k2tog, but neither hindered my knitting at all. And then it was done, and I washed it and pinned it out, and…BAM. Amazing! 

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The lace opened up so beautifully; is it fair to say it bloomed? And you know how cotton and silk yarns have a wonderful drape? This is the same! It lays perfectly, and is nicely lightweight and breathable. Plus, I think it will hold its blocking really well too, so it won’t need much attention as long as I keep it clean.

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In a nutshell, this is wonderful shawl yarn. Though it feels like a strong, durable yarn, I wouldn’t use it for socks or garments because of its similarities to cotton (less stretch) and because it’s hand wash/dry flat. But I would absolutely make more lace shawls, and they have a wide variety of solids, semi-solids and variegated colors to choose from. The $22 price tag is more than reasonable, in my opinion, especially when you can get a gorgeous project from just one skein.

What do you think? Ready to try some yak??

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Thank you to Stitchcraft Marketing and Bijou Basin Ranch, who generously sent me one skein of Lhasa Wilderness (retail value $22) for free. I received no other compensation for this review. All opinions and photos are my own.

Moving forward

Thanks for all the kind words and suggestions on my shawl dilemma! As several people suggested, I decided to frog the lace section and start it over with a contrasting color. I have a cream in my stash that will be quite lovely with the green. Last night I threaded the needle through the last row of stockinette (or so I thought) and started frogging the lace. Of course once the lace was gone, I didn’t exactly have one row of stitches on my needle, but it was simple enough to go through and fix that. Tedious and time-consuming, but simple. With that done, I was ready to pick up with my cream and start the lace section anew.

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I love it! I think it’s going to be a perfect Christmas shawl this way, maybe worn with a red sweater, or is that too much?

Also this morning, I made a quick trip to the craft store for felt and safety eyes so I can make this baby sloth. Found the felt easily enough, but can you believe they don’t carry safety eyes?? Craziness. It’s not for a baby, so I can substitute tiny buttons and it will be fine. Still, I couldn’t just buy one 40 cent sheet of felt, could I? Plus all the yarn was on sale! Plus I stumbled across this new jean yarn and it’s awesome, even if it is acrylic.

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I may have bought enough to make this sweater. (And for only $21!!) I know, the pattern is DK and the yarn is worsted, and I’m going to have to swatch and do math and all that. I’m okay with that! I can swatch sometimes, when I have to.

Speaking of swatching, the crochet hat that I struggled with is done. It seemed to grow a little bit in washing but I’m crossing my fingers that it will fit. It is pretty, at least! It’s the Ski Lodge Beanie and you can see my Ravelry notes here.

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I’ve discovered the best part about getting an extra hour today is not an extra hour of sleep (I have three dogs, are you kidding me?) but an extra hour of knitting!