I said I needed a break from socks. I didn’t listen to myself.
Last weekend I caught up with my friend Jess. We decided during our Green Bay sock knitting adventures that we were going to start doing a small striped sock club of sorts. We take turns buying the yarn for the other person. When I met her for a walk she gave me the yarn she picked out. She picked it up in Berkeley when she was in California for work. The yarn is not superwash and it’s 100% wool. It’s wooly and I love it. I couldn’t wait to get started, so I cast on a vanilla sock to use as my park knitting project.
Last month when I went crazy at the Iowa Sheep and Wool Festival I bought a project bag, even though I have about 19,000 project bags around my house. I decided that I should justify buying the bag by continually having a project that uses yarn I purchased at the festival on the needles. I won’t rush through these projects, but they will be at the ready. As an added bonus, if I finish knitting all of the yarn I bought this year by the time the festival starts next year I can totally justify getting even more beautiful yarn.
Because I can be a little obsessive about things, I have decided that my current project will be knit only when watching the Tour de France. John and I spend hours and hours watching the Tour each July. I thought it would be fun to see how that watching correlates to knitting productivity. I’m making another pair of Rose City Rollers, as I’m using a 65 g skein. I wanted a project that I could knit even when there is an exciting mountain stage to pull all of my focus.
The yarn I’m using is a farm yarn from the festival. It’s a 65% Cormo/20% mohair/15% Tencel blend. I love the bright pink. Sadly John has to work tonight deploying code, so I won’t get to work on these until tomorrow night.
I was planning on picking up my shawl again this week, but instead I decided to make Elliot a hat. It is the middle of summer, so obviously I need to make a new winter hat for the three-year-old with so many hand me downs I don’t have the space to store them all. Last December John and I spent the day in Winterset, and while there I picked up some camel yarn for Elliot. Elliot loves camels. He sleeps with two camels every night. I felt a camel hat was in order. The yarn is Viking of Norway Camel (78% camel/22% nylon). The yarn is soft and looks very much like camel fur (skin? hide? I’m not sure what the right term is here. If you are a camelid expert please help me out in the comments).
I’m using the Tyson hat pattern in the child size. I’m contemplating adding camels to the hat using the chart from Bedouin using purls instead of a contrasting yarn. It all depends on how motivated I am this evening. Feel free to weigh in with your opinion.
I am only interested in knitting small projects at the moment. I would like to knit another sweater, but I don’t want to deal with a big project in the heat. Do you knit large projects all year long?
I finished Mary-Claire’s Rose City Rollers. I like how they turned out. Now I just need to get them sent off to her. I wish I was heading to Chicago this summer, it would be nice to be able to hand them off in person.
On the 4th of July I decided to cast on a quick project with the sport weigh yarn I picked up at the Iowa Sheep and Wool Festival. I decided to go with Diana’s Hat from Green Gables Knits. It’s a simple hat that will work well as a back up hat to keep around for the times when I can’t find one of my good hats. It is a fine hat, it’s just boring. The farm yarn I used knit up beautifully. I lost the label, but I think it was a 80% Cormo/20% Tencel blend.
My plan is to start a pair of socks for my travel project and a project for knitting after the kids are in bed that I can actually focus on. I don’t have any yarn wound or pattern ideas in mind, but until then I could just pick up one of the many projects currently hibernating in my knitting basket.
On Friday I was knitting away on my projects when a skein of yarn called to me. It was a skein of Poems Silk (75% wool 25% silk) that was sent to me in a fiber exchange. It is not yarn I would normally pick. I don’t knit much with silk, and the colors are not my style. I was compelled to cast on a hat.
I blame Alissa. Her post on Friday about her WIPs was too inspirational. I asked her about having so many WIPs and she explained it so well I thought I should add another project to my knitting basket (it’s not really a basket, BTW, it is more of a pile of project bags).
I decided on the Bankhead pattern. I cast on 90 stitches and got to work. From the beginning I didn’t like the yarn, but I did like seeing how the colors progressed. I knit until I was almost out of yarn. I ended up with a hat that fits the kids. They need another hat, especially Elliot, who is hat obsessed.
I don’t like the yarn, but I loved the pattern. I’ll be making this hat again, next time with a solid wool yarn. Maybe even a farm yarn…something that screams sheep.
I was hoping to have a project to work on mindlessly for a week or two, but once I started this hat I just wanted to be done with it. I’m now only 170 g in the hole for my yarn diet.
On Wednesday I mentioned that I was thinking about making a hat for my brother. By Thursday night I had moved from the idea of possible making a hat to selecting a pattern (Bulky Waffle Hat by Linda Suda). I pulled out some Wool of the Andes bulky from my stash and got to work…
…well, I tried to get to work, but I don’t have a pair of size 10.5 16 inch needles. I grabbed a pair of 9s instead and knit the largest size assuming it would work. I tossed it all in my knitting bag and headed to St. Louis.
Going down a needle size and up a pattern size worked out great. One thing that didn’t work? Forgetting a 40 inch needle to switch to magic loop at the decreases. Luckily my friend’s daughter likes colored pencils, so I grabbed them and told myself they were close enough to the needle size to work.
The pencils worked great, and I ended up with a hat I like a lot.
When I gave it to my brother he said “I already have a hat.” I had to make him take it at the end of our time together. I should know better to make a hat for someone who doesn’t care about knitting. It’s all OK though, as I now have less yarn in my stash.
I hope you were able to complete a project this weekend too.