Knitstant Gratification

The crafting adventures of a knitter, music lover, and hockey fan.

Splurge! Or What I Got at YarnCon

Posted by Andi on April 24, 2016

My stash is huge. I am in no danger of running out of yarn any time soon. I’m doing my best to control the growth of my stash. I’ve discussed some of the measures I’m taking here before. I keep track of the number of yards of yarn I add to my stash every year, and also keep track of the number of yards I remove (either by knitting or by destashing). Excluding yarn I buy for specific projects, I try to limit the yarn I purchase just because I think it’s pretty and want it in my stash to indie dyers and fiber festivals, though I often fall off the wagon.

The first part of this year I was participating in the Winter Camp, where I was limiting my projects to those I could make with yarn already in my stash, and I wouldn’t buy any yarn during that time. Winter Camp ended at the end of March, and YarnCon was the first weekend in April, so I gearing up to make my first yarn purchases of the year at YarnCon.

I failed a bit. I did buy some yarn before YarnCon. I decided I wanted a new shawl to wear with a dress and I bought the yarn for that from Knit Picks. But it didn’t arrive at my house until after YarnCon, so it doesn’t count, right?

Here is what I got at YarnCon:

My #YarnCon haul. #knitting #yarn

Normally I walk around to all the booths before buying anything, unless I see something I have to have and I’m worried it could be sold out before I get back there. The first yarn on the left I bought as soon as I saw it. It’s by Happy-Go-Lucky, which I have never heard of but is based in the Chicago area. It’s their HGL Sock base in the colorway Magnificent Mile – which is the colors of the Chicago flag. I have the Chicago flag tattooed on my arm, so of course I had to have that. But, I really wanted to buy more from this vendor. I’m guessing I have a lot in common with the dyer, because I loved a lot of her colorway names. One is Lemon Lymon, which is a reference to The West Wing. Awesome!

Going into YarnCon there was one thing I was looking for in paticular. I have the pattern for Endless Rainbow by Martina Behm. I have yarn to use for the rainbow part, but I needed a solid with enough yardage for the main color. I knew that Leading Men Fiber Arts has fingering weight yarn in 150g put ups, since I’ve bought it in the past (see my Duchess of Devonshie shawl). At first I was thinking I wanted a light gray, but then I saw this light blue yarn (next to the pair of socks in the photo) and thought it was the perfect sky color to go with the rainbow yarn. It’s their Soliloquy base in the colorway Ol’ Blue Eyes.

I dropped the most money at the Dragonfly Fibers booth all because of my desire to knit things in the colors of my favorite sports teams. The second yarn from the left caught my eye first because I don’t have any yarn in Cubs colors. It is their Djinni base in the Wrigleyville colorway. Sold! The yarn that is third from the left is in the Chief Black Hawk colorway, which I had seen before but never purchased. As opposed to being just black and red or red, black and white, it is based on the colors of the Blackhawks’ logo. I had been wanting that for a while, so I bought that too.

I’m a sucker for undyed yarns that are the color of the animal. There were a couple of vendors selling such yarn. With Tim’s help I picked the top cake of yarn from Deitricks’ Alpaca Ranch. It is 200 yards of worsted weight yarn spun from a mixture of Maggie’s and Pretty Thing’s fleece. I love it. It’s such a pretty gray. I plan to make a Handbrake Cowl out of it.

Finally, the pair of socks were for Tim. He loves the socks I knit for him, but last year I bought him a pair of manufactured alpaca socks and he loved them for the coldest days of the year. They were getting worn out, so I bought him a new pair to replace the old ones.

So that was a lot. More than I planned. Oops! But here’s how well I did at stash busting at Winter Camp. Between the YarnCon purchases and the Knit Picks yarn for the shawl I have 3,470 “yards in”, but I also had 4,520.4 “yards out” for 130%. I didn’t knit all of those yards. 820 yards was from destashing a skein of lace weight yarn. I thought for sure I bought more than I used, but I was wrong!

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Lots of Accessories!

Posted by Andi on April 10, 2016

As Winter Camp was winding down I wanted to get as many points as possible. I didn’t want to knit on something large and not finish it by the deadline, meaning I would not get points for a couple of weeks of knitting. Once the sweater was done I only made small, quick accessories so that everything I knit in March would count.

Here they are, in the order in which I completed them.

Morning Mist
Pattern: Morning Mist by Sandrine C.
Yarn: Colour Adventure Girly Fun DK in Forest (.64 skein, 147.8 yards, 64 grams)
Needles: US 6
Date started: March 6, 2016
Date completed: March 18, 2016

I won this yarn from the A Homespun House podcast. It’s one of the few skeins of DK weight yarn I have. It’s not clear from the photo, but there is sparkle in the yarn. I wanted a new pair of fingerless mitts, and since I only had one skein of this yarn I thought it would be perfect. I love them. Except for the cast on. The pattern calls for a cable cast on, and I couldn’t understand why the cast on wasn’t more stretchy. That would be because I didn’t put the stitches on the needle correctly. Oops! I’m actually working on another project with a cable cast on and did it right, and it makes a world of difference.

Bath Mitt
Pattern: Bath Mitt by Lily Sugar’n Cream and Bernat Design Studio
Yarn: Lily Sugar’n Cream in 1404 Yellow (.59 skein, 71 yards, 42 grams)
Needles: US 9
Date started: March 18, 2016
Date completed: March 19, 2016

Back around the holidays, the manager of the restaurant where my knitting group meets bought a bunch of cotton yarn for us. I took this lovely yellow yarn, and decided to make a bath mitt out of it. I made such a major mistake on it, though. It’s knit from the cuff up. I separated and made the thumb, then went back to knit the hand. I don’t know what I was thinking, but I started the hand decreases right away instead of knitting even for a while. The hand was shorter than the thumb! Oops! So I had to rip back and add more length to to the hand.

Generally I think this is great. The garter stitch is nice and scrubby but soft on my skin. If I were to make it again, however, I would go down a couple of needle sizes. I used the needle called for in the pattern, and didn’t make a swatch. Actually, if I made a swatch I probably still wouldn’t have recognized the problem. When it gets wet, the garter stitch grows a lot. A tighter gauge would be better. I have more cotton yarn (including more of this yarn) so I think I’m going to try a tighter one soon.

Lovely Linen Stitch Cowl
Pattern: Lovely Linen Stitch Cowl by Gaspereau Valley Fibres
Yarn: Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Bulky in 808 Maple Grove (1.88 skeins, 262.7 yards, 212 grams)
Needles: US 13
Date started: March 16, 2016
Date completed: March 20, 2016

This yarn was reclaimed from a scarf I no longer liked. I frogged the scarf and washed the yarn a year or two ago. I wanted to find a pattern that would use as much of the yarn as possible. It is hard to tell from the photo because there is no scale, but this is a long cowl. I can wrap it around my neck twice. It’s nice and big and I think it will be very warm. I finished it just in time for spring! Here in Chicago, however, we seem to be having a second winter. It has snowed at least a little bit most days in April so far. If I go out today maybe I will wear it.

Dead Simple Lace Socks
Pattern: Dead Simple Lace Socks by Wendy D. Johnson
Yarn: Colinette Jitterbug in 55 Toscana (.68 skein, 272 yards, 102 grams)
Needles: US 1
Date started: March 12, 2016
Date completed: March 27, 2016

I finished these socks in about two weeks, but I finished the first sock in a few days, and then held off on the second sock until I had a travel week so I could take it on the plane. They knit up quickly – probably because, even though Ravelry says this is a fingering weight yarn, it’s actually more of a sport weight.

I’m a little nervous about this yarn. When I went to wind it I discovered it’s 100% merino, with no nylon content. I almost never make socks with 100% merino (except when I first started knitting socks and didn’t know any better) because they are weaker and wear out faster. But I bought this yarn specifically to make socks. I didn’t want to make anything else out of it, so I decided these might be house socks. That’s fine. I wore them the other day when it was cold in the apartment and they kept my feet nice and warm. I have also heard bad things about the dye on this yarn, that for some people it has bled badly. As you can see, this yarn is a light color with some really bright bits. I’m really worried the bright bits are going to bleed and get all over the light parts. I haven’t washed these socks yet. I guess if they are house socks no one will see them, so it won’t matter if they bleed, but it will make me sad.

Skimmer Socks
Pattern: Skimmer Socks by Sheila Toy Stromberg
Yarn: Leading Men Fiber Arts Show Stealer in Thus with a Kiss I Die (.3 skeins, 130.5 yards, 30 grams)
Needles: US 1 and 1.5
Date started: March 27, 2016
Date completed: March 30, 2016

Aren’t these cute? These are supposed to be those little socks you wear with shoes that aren’t supposed to show. I made these with leftovers from the pair of socks I made my mom for her birthday back in December. They only took 30 grams of yarn. Usually my sock leftovers are smaller than that, but sometimes I have that much. Right now I’m making a pair of socks for Tim out of this same yarn. I was hoping I would have 30 grams left over, but I don’t think I will. His socks are cabled and he has bigger feet than my mom, so it will use more of the yarn. Oh well. If they truly don’t show I can make monster versions with lots of leftovers. I haven’t worn these yet, so I can’t report how well they work in shoes. I also have another pattern that I’m going to try, and I’m going to see which works better.

So that wraps up my Winter Camp knitting! I ended up with 467 points, so I should have nine entries for prizes. But that wasn’t what it was about for me. I used this as a challenge for myself to make all of the projects out of stash yarn, and I was successful. I didn’t buy any yarn during this period either. I loved the challenge. I just heard they will be doing it again next year, so I will participate then as well.

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When Not Following the Pattern Comes Back to Bite You

Posted by Andi on April 1, 2016

Last year a local yarn store nearby closed. I bought a sweater’s quantity of Cascade 220 on sale there right before it closed. I wanted to make a warm oversized sweater that had enough room to have several layers underneath that, but that would also be interesting to knit. I chose the Caldwell Pullover and made it a size bigger than I really needed. I’m happy with the body, but the sleeves, not so much.

Caldwell Pullover
Pattern: Caldwell Pullover by Courtney Spainhower
Yarn: Cascade 220 in 9541 Lupin (4.88 skeins, 1073.6 yards, 488 grams)
Needles: US 8
Date started: December 31, 2015
Date completed: March 13, 2016

The problem with the sleeves is that yarn overs and decreases cause it to puff out. It’s most visible on the left sleeve. This is after I tried to block it out. It was worse before. I didn’t notice it was doing that until after I finished knitting the sleeves. I went back to the Raverly pattern page to look at the finished objects to see if it happened to anyone else. It did, but because the others who knit the pattern didn’t make theirs oversized like I did and the sleeves fit closer to their arms it’s not as obvious.

So yeah, not thrilled with the sleeves. But I wore the sweater the other morning when the temperature dropped during the night and it was cold in my apartment in the morning. And you know what? It worked just like I wanted it to. My long-sleeved shirt fit under it just fine, and it totally warmed me up. So, success? I guess so.

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Strie

Posted by Andi on March 20, 2016

Strie
Pattern: Strie Socks, Top Down by Lara Neel
Yarn: Regia Design Line Random Stripe by Kaffe Fassett, 1.56 skeins (358.8 yards)
Needles: US 1
Date started: January 19, 2016
Date completed: March 6, 2016

My mother bought me the book Sock Architecture by Lara Neel for either my birthday or Christmas (I don’t recall which). I quickly decided I wanted to knit every sock pattern in the book and try the various techniques. This was my first. There are toe-up and cuff-down versions of this pattern. I used the cuff-down version. There were three options for toes. I did the shorter toe, which meant I had to knit the foot a tad bit longer than I normally do because the toe decreases were going to take up less room. I wanted to see how that would work out. I have worn the socks once so far, and so far so good.

I love this yarn. There are so many colors in it. From far away it’s clear there are different colors, but close up you can see that some are brighter than others. There is enough left to make some hexipuffs, which will look great in my blanket.

As I said, this was the cuff-down version of the pattern. I don’t think I will make the toe-up version until I’ve knit a few more patterns from the book, just for the variety. I love how this stitch pattern looks, but it was a bit tedious. Plus, I just finished a pair of fingerless mitts (that’s for another post) that uses the same stitch pattern. So I think I will hold off for bit.

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Simple Braided Cable Knit Hat

Posted by Andi on March 13, 2016

I finished the second of the green and brown shawls with a few days left to go in February, and there was one type of Winter Camp extra points for February that I hadn’t collected yet – color. One of the colors for February was orange, and I happened to have an extra skein of orange yarn in my stash. I originally intended to buy one skein of Cascade 220 in orange to make amigurumi carrots. And, in fact, I did by a skein – and promptly forgot and bought another one. So, extra orange yarn! Perfect! There were only a few days left in February, but I thought I could eke out an orange hat.

So I did!

Simple Braided Cable Knit Hat
Pattern: Simple Braided Cable Knit Hat by Melissa Leapman
Yarn: Cascade 220 in 9465B Burnt Orange (.78 skien, 171.6 yards)
Needles: US 7
Date started: February 25, 2016
Date completed: February 27, 2016

I searched Ravelry for a pattern, focused on patterns I already owned, and decided on this one. This pattern is out of one of the earliest knitting books I bought: Cables Untangled by Melissa Leapman. When I started going through to book looking for the pattern instructions I realized I had this book for many years, but never knit anything out of it. There are some blankets in this book I really want to make. I’m thinking about making the Harvest Tweed Afghan for Tim. But the main reason I wanted this book was to have the Sampler Afghan pattern. I completely forgot I had this pattern, and I want to make it so badly.

Anyway, back to the hat. This was such an easy pattern. Once you get past the brim there is an easy to memorize 4-row repeat until you get to the decreases. The cable is pretty easy as well. This would be a fantastic project for someone who wants to try their hands at cables, but don’t want the commitment of making a larger sweater or something. It knit up so quickly. And with this yarn it’s so nice and warm – just in time for spring! So I may not wear it until next year, but it will be nice and warm when I do. If I were to make it again using this yarn I would probably go down a needle size or two because it’s just a tad bit loose. My head is small, but my hair is so thin that hats are often big on me. But this one will do. It’s not too loose.

As you may recall, I also made an orange hat for Tim. The orange of Tim’s hat is much brighter than the orange hat I made myself. We haven’t tried to wear them on the same day yet. I wonder how that will look!

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Green and Brown Shawls

Posted by Andi on March 6, 2016

February was the month where I finished two green and brown shawls that were the same shape and designed by podcasters. I didn’t do this on purpose – it was a complete coincidence.

Duchess of Devonshire
Pattern: Duchess of Devonshire by Kay Jones
Yarn: Leading Men Fiber Arts in Soliloquy in Into the Woods (.89 skein, 586.9 yards)
Needles: US 6
Date started: January 12, 2016
Date completed: February 16, 2016

I didn’t take a close up photo of the yarn, but trust me, it’s light green with some brown.

I purchased this yarn at Yarn Con last year. It’s a 150 g put up, so it has more yardage than typical skeins of fingering weight yarn. I bought it specifically to make a shawl, I was just waiting to find the right pattern.

Kay Jones of the Bakery Bears Podcast designed the pattern. I saw the pattern on the podcast and thought this yarn would be perfect for it. The pattern called for about 150 g of yarn, so I wouldn’t have too much leftover yarn. I wanted to use as much of the skein as possible. I used all one color, but some people who have knit this pattern used two colors, and those are beautiful as well.

I loved knitting this pattern. The body of the shawl is pretty and easy to knit, so I was able to work on this pattern while watching hockey. The best part is the edging at the bottom. Typically when I’ve done edging like that it involved binding off hundreds of stitches and then picking them up. This keeps all the stitches on the needle, which was so much easier.

I would recommend this shawl for someone who wants to start their first lace project. The lace in the body of the shawl is basic. There is more shaping in the edging, but it’s still pretty easy. And the results are so pretty!

In the month of February, you could get 20 Winter Camp bonus points by finishing a project for your neck, so I got bonus points for this one.

Across the Pond Shawl
Pattern: Across the Pond Shawl by Mina Philipp
Yarn: Zen Yarn Garden Serenity Glitter Sock in Black Mousse (.92 skeins – 368.3 yards) and Frosted Kiwi (.82 skeins, 328.2 yards)
Needles: US 5
Date started: February 4, 2016
Date completed: February 25, 2016

I worked very hard to get this project done in February to get Winter Camp bonus points. I couldn’t get the neck points because I got those with the Duchess of Devonshire shawl, and you can only get one type of bonus points once a month. This shawl was designed by Mina Philipp of the Knitting Expat Podcast, who was one of the Winter Camp featured designers for February. I wouldn’t get the bonus points if I finished it in March.

I had two color combination possibilities for this shawl. The first was some very light pink and very dark gray I bought at Purl Soho in New York a couple of years ago. The second was the color combination I chose. I bought this yarn the day before Christmas Eve as a Christmas gift for myself because it was so soft (it has some cashmere in it) and pretty and shiny. I just wanted to knit with this yarn more, so I chose it.

After I chose this yarn for this project I realized I would be making back-to-back green and brown shawls. The greens are both light and kind of similar, so I decided to use the brown yarn for the body of this shawl. Thankfully they don’t look too similar.

As with the first shawl, I wanted to use as much of this yarn as possible. As such, I kept knitting repeats of each section until I didn’t have enough yarn for another full repeat, ignoring the pattern a bit which gives recommendations as to where to stop. I still have enough yarn for hexipuffs, though.

I felt very accomplished to finished large fingering weight projects so quickly.

I am doing the yards in/yards out calculations this year, but you may have noticed that I haven’t put those calculations in my posts. That’s because I haven’t bought any yarn yet this year, and you can’t divide by zero. It’s been very difficult – I’ve really been in the mood to buy yarn, and I’ve had to force myself not to go into any of the local yarn stores around here. But so far, so good.

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Spotting Hand Knits in the Wild

Posted by Andi on February 28, 2016

As a knitter, when I’m out in public I’m constantly looking at people’s sweaters, hats, scarves, cowls, etc. and wondering, “Did someone knit that?” I look for telltale signs. Is there a tag? Do I recognize that yarn? Every once in a while I am confident the item is hand knit. Sometimes it’s hard to tell.

Very rarely, I can confirm something is hand knit because I recognize the pattern. I’m not considering the knits I see at fiber festivals or yarn stores. I expect to see people wearing their knits there. I’m taking about being out in random places in public.

The first time this ever happened to me was a few years ago. I was in a waiting room – doctor, dentist, I can’t remember. It was winter, and a woman walked in wearing Calorimetry. I recognized it right away because that pattern was very popular for a while. Everyone (except me) was making it, so I saw many versions of it. I was going to say something to her once she sat down, but she never did. She went up to the receptionist, picked something up, and walked out.

Last week it happened again. I was on a Brown Line train, and there was a woman wearing Rockefeller. I have knit that pattern, so I was particularly excited to see someone else’s version in person. I debated whether to say something to her, but we were both wearing headphones, and by the time I noticed it the train was nearing my stop and I was going to have to get off the train. Of course, then the train inched its way to my stop, so in the end I probably did have time to talk to the woman wearing it.

Later on I kicked myself for not saying anything to her. I’m always happy to talk about my knits, but on the train people are often in their own little bubbles. We both had on headphones. It’s not typical to see people randomly strike up conversation on the CTA. Perhaps next time I will.

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Hat Trick Denied

Posted by Andi on February 20, 2016

Every January, the Puck This! group on Ravelry participates in the January Hat Trick, where we try to make at least three hats in the month of January. For those of you who are not hockey fans, a hat trick is when a player scores three goals in one game. Some of us cast on during the Winter Classic, which is an outdoor NHL game that takes place on New Year’s Day every year. I went to a bar to watch the Winter Classic, so I cast on before that so I could knit on the train.

Thornhill Hat
Pattern: Thornhill Hat by Brenda Castiel
Yarn: Plymouth Encore in 354, .66 skein (132 yards)
Needles: US 6
Date started: January 1, 2016
Date completed: January 12, 2016

I’m participating in the Winter Camp for the first three months of the year. There are teams, and you get points for how much yarn you use, but there are bonus points available if you use the color of the month, a pattern by a featured designer of the month, or type of project of the month. In January, the colors were blue and purple, and the project was “for the head.” I had this skein of yarn in my stash, just one skein, so it was enough to make a hat and get two types of bonus points.

Tim chose the pattern, which I also already owned. It was interesting to knit because it’s ribbed and cabled – and even the cables are ribbed. Because of that, there are some gaps in the stitches, so Tim wears this hat on mildly cold days. It’s actually been perfect for the past few days. It’s been unseasonably warm here, and some of Tim’s other hats would be too warm.

Obla
Pattern: Obla by Amanda Schwabe
Yarn: Wollmeise 80/20 Twin in WD Aquarius (.29 skein, 146.2 yards) and WD Jeton (.21 skein, 105.4 yards)
Needles: US 2
Date started: January 16, 2016
Date completed: January 29, 2016

I also knit this hat out of stash yarn – leftovers actually. I made another hat with the blue, and a pair of socks out of the yellow. I had a lot of yarn left over of each, but not enough to make a project out of either one, so this hat was the perfect pattern for this leftover yarn.

The yarn was in my stash, but the pattern wasn’t. I paid for it. The designer was one of the Winter Camp featured designers in January. One of my goals for this year was to master stranded colorwork. It has been a long time since I’ve tried stranded colorwork, and I wasn’t happy with the results in the past. I’m a good knitter so I knew if I practiced it would work out. This was a great pattern to practice on because the longest floats are only 4-5 stitches long. There was no need to catch floats in the back.

I knit using both hands. I held one color in one hand, and the other color in the other hand. When I tried it in the past I found it really awkward, but this time, outside of the first few stitches, it wasn’t awkward at all! I was able to zoom around the hat.

I didn’t knit a gauge swatch, and had no idea how my gauge would compare to my one-color gauge. This was meant to be a practice piece, so if it didn’t fit me I was going to give it to someone else. Turns out it fit. I wore it for the first time the other day. It’s nice and warm.

As you can see, that’s two hats. I did not have time to do the third. The colorwork hat took a while. Also, I was having hand problems again, so I did have to take a time out from knitting (I sewed some hexipuffs together instead). I also had to travel, and I thought two-handed colorwork would be a bit much on a plane, so I started a pair of socks for that. I may have failed at the hat trick, but I was able to get bonus points for Winter Camp.

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The Rest of 2015

Posted by Andi on January 24, 2016

My last post from a few weeks ago showed the last of my finished objects in 2015. I had a few days left in the year, but didn’t want to cast on anything new because I wanted any new projects to count towards my Winter Camp score, and for that I couldn’t cast on before 7:00 PM on New Year’s Eve.

I decided to go back to my long term work in progress – the Beekeeper’s Quilt. A while back, maybe two years ago, a friend sent me a bunch of fingering weight leftovers. I put them all in a project bag, and tried to make two of each with the time I had left in 2015. I didn’t get through all of them, but I made 24 new hexipuffs.

24 new hexipuffs

For Winter Camp (which I will discuss more in my next post) we can get one point for each hexipuff we do. As such, there was a thread in the Ravelry group where participants posted where they were on their Beekeeper’s Quilts or other sock yarn blankets prior to the official cast on time. For the first time in a long time I counted my hexipuffs and examined my progress.

Beekeeper's Quilt Progress

The bottom part of the picture shows the quilt in progress. There are 86 hexipuffs that are already sewn together. The top part of the picture shows two piles of hexipuffs. I start sewing on from the pile on the left, which has 24 hexipuffs. The pile on the left contains duplicates of puffs already in the blanket or in the pile on the right, and there are 79 hexipuffs in that pile. The total number of hexipuffs I have is 189. I will need to see how big the blanket is once all 189 are sewn together, but I’m guessing I’m close to half done with it.

I was counting my yards in and yards out in 2015, hoping to be around 100% – using or destashing about as much as I acquire. It was a spectacular failure, mostly because I bought several sweater’s quantities of yarn, but didn’t knit them up. I either knit or destashed 12,537.5 yards, but I acquired 16,944 yards. I hope to do much better this year. I can say that so far I have finished a hat (which I will show in my next post) and so far, have not bought any yarn.

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Catching Up, Part 2 – The Last FOs of 2015

Posted by Andi on January 3, 2016

So here we are. The projects that rounded out the year.

First, I apologize for the poor quality of this first picture. I forgot to take a photo before I gave these as a gift, and only had a quick moment to grab a photo after giving it. You can see what the stitch pattern better by looking at photos on the Ravelry pattern page.

Harvest Dew
Pattern: Harvest Dew by Yvette Noel
Yarn: Leading Men Fiber Arts Show Stealer in Thus With a Kiss I Die, .66 skein (287.1 yards)
Needle: US 1
Date started: November 26, 2015
Date completed: December 9, 2015

I made these socks for my mother as part of her birthday present. I’ve used this same yarn for socks for myself, and really like the base. It was my first pair of socks with cashmere content, and if anyone deserves socks with cashmere it’s my mom. When I went to the Leading Men Fiber Arts website to figure out which colorway to buy, I started with looking at yarns with pink in them. My mom likes pink. At the same time I happened to glance down on the floor, where I spotted the Amazon box with the books I ordered for my mom as another part of her birthday present. I noticed that one book had a white cover, the other had a violet color. I looked up and saw this colorway – the colors of each book plus pink. Perfect!! It was meant to be!! This yarn was a delight to knit with, and I really enjoyed the pattern as well. It’s great for variegated yarn, so I recommend it if you have a highly variegated yarn but don’t want to knit a plain vanilla sock.

Striped Boomerang
Pattern – Inspired by Dramaticknits’ Foliage Boomerang
Yarn: Cascade 220 Fingering in 8891 Cyan (1.28 skeins, 349.4 yards) and 9570 Concord Grape (.6 skein, 163.8 yards)
Needle: US 6
Date started: October 15, 2015
Date completed: December 22, 2015

This was part of Tim’s Christmas present. I worried this would’t be finished by Christmas. I bought the yarn a while back. Tim picked it out. He saw these two colors in the yarn shop. They were right next to each other and thought they looked nice together. At the time I suggested I could make him a boomerang scarf, since I had made him one before and he liked it. He agreed it would be nice, but suggested that it be more blue than purple so I bought two skeins of Cyan and one of Concord Grape.

I wanted to surprise him with it for Christmas, which meant I couldn’t knit it at home. At least most of the time. I worked on it at knit group. I worked on it on the train once or twice. One of my friends at knit group took pity on me and invited me to her house to work on it one night. I told Tim that knit group was having an extra meeting before Christmas so we could all have extra time to work on Christmas presents. That wasn’t really a lie, since I was with someone from knit group and we were both working on Christmas presents. Finally, to get more time in, I started waking up early and would work on it for some time while Tim was sleeping. Eventually I got it finished, and he seems to like it. He wore it out today for the first time when we walked to the hardware store. He said it was nice and warm.

Striped Boomerang

See… he likes it!!

Nuvem
Pattern: Nuvem by Martina Behm
Yarn: SuhRim Trading Co. Ltd. Muse in 29 – 2.83 skeins (1,709.3 yards)
Needle: US 4
Date started: May 21, 2015
Date completed: December 26, 2015

The shawl that never ends finally ended. I shouldn’t say that. It took this long because I would set it down for weeks at a time without working on it. The rounds eventually got so long that I didn’t like working on it outside the house. It was huge and difficult to maneuver sometimes because I was knitting it on two long circular needles. It’s not a method I particularly like, but it was necessary because eventually the rounds were so big.

It got to the point where this and Tim’s boomerang were the only projects I had on the needles. I was working on this at home, and Tim’s boomerang outside the home as described above. Once Tim’s boomerang was done, I decided to finish this shawl as my last FO of 2015. I worried I couldn’t get it done in time, but I finished it the day after Christmas.

And that’s it. Pretty much. I didn’t want to cast on anything new in the last few days of 2015 because I am participating in Winter Camp 2016, where we couldn’t cast on until 7:00 PM on New Year’s Eve, and I wanted anything new to count toward the camp. More about that in an upcoming post. So I spent the rest of the year knitting hexipuffs. The next post will be about that progress.

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