Knit Meter

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Another One

This shawl I knitted from my own handspun yarn and isn’t the last of my finished objects for the WIP challenge.

A while ago (three/four years?) I decided I wanted to spin. I didn’t want to learn how to spin on a wheel as I knew that was very likely to be a slippery slope to having even more yarn that I don’t have time to use. Many years ago when we were still living in Calgary I took a class on learning how to spin on a drop spindle. There were only two sessions and I didn’t practice so nothing happened after the two weeks but I remember enjoying it. So when this urge came on me to spin I gave drop spindle spinning another go but I needed supplies. I had no idea what fiber to purchase. I found a website that supplied beginners packs of fiber and did a little research on good spindles. Although I would have liked something pretty I did not want to spend a lot of money on something that might be used twice only but I did want one that was well made.

I purchased a Kundert spindle and a pack of three different types of fiber from Spunky Eclectic and was ready. The suggestions are to spin for 30 minutes a day to build skill and I could achieve this at first but then life got in the way (Grandchildren moved in) and I was lucky to get any spinning done. I plied the natural yarn and chain plied the coloured yarn, which was fun. Because there were big gaps between my spinning sessions each time was like the first time and I ended up with thick/thin yarn. Nevertheless I wanted to use it and found a simple pattern that I could stop when I ran out of yarn After I started I found another pattern that I could use the border.

Although yellow is not one of my favourite colours, I am pleased with the end result and it will be nice for wearing around the house. I wish I had thought about the yarns more before starting as the rougher yarn is at the neck. A good lesson for next time. The natural yarns are New Zealand Blend Roving and Corriedale Combed Top and the yellow yarn is Combed Top BFL.

And then having spun and plyed my first yarn, I HAD to buy more fiber to continue to practice. Once again I was stuck with “I don’t know what to buy”. There are names of dyers that are mentioned quite often on Ravelry so I purchased from a Raveler’s stash.

Friday, October 26, 2018

Not My Oldest Project

Today’s finished item is a project that I started on 1 December last year, although this was the same day as the Advent Knit Along as that started small I needed something else to work on.I loved the yarn and the pattern which is why it got set aside for an Epiphany cast on. I know, does not make any sense although that project was suited to the time of year and did get finished.

Once a project is set aside it is easy for it to remain that way. But I took it on vacation in June and got as far as the border. The border is knit sideways, not hard, but not really something you can do while doing other things. So with my new found enthusiasm for finishing things, this project was picked up and finished. It took about a week to work the border, less than I was expecting and not too long that I got bored.

Now a little bit about the yarn and pattern. The variegated yarn I got in 2015 as part of a yarn club. I loved it and did not want it to become socks but had no pattern in mind. Then in the summer of 2017 I saw this pattern and knew it would be perfect for my yarn, if only I had a solid to go with it!

This was solved at the 2017 San Diego Yarn Crawl when I purchased Sweet Georgia Superwash Sport in the Wisteria colourway.

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

A Week Later

Another finished project with a story. Earlier this year a friend visited New Zealand and for my birthday gave me a ball of New Zealand wool.

It would have made lovely gloves or hat but they're not something I would use much where I live, so the search was on for the right project. I found a shallow garter stitch shawl with a lace edging and from the pattern notes it would appear that I had enough yarn wool for the garter stitch part. I found a similar weight yarn for the lace part in my stash, left over from another project and also small amounts of yarn for the cast on and off.

I did not have enough contrast yarn to complete all the lace section, so just stopped when it ran out. And then I used only half of the skein of New Zealand wool. Oh well. I love the finished project.

Monday, October 22, 2018

First Finished Object

After joining the WIP KAL on Ravelry, which fitted in very nicely with my goal of no new cast ons until 1 December, I was going to post all my finished objects in one post. However, there is a bit of a story behind each project, so it is likely each will have its own post.

The yarn used in this project is Miss Babs Yummy 2-ply. She is a very popular dyer that I have not seen locally but I purchased some DK weight when I was in Washington D.C. and knit the second shawl shown here.

At the end of the year Miss Babs has a sale, it is a good one and they make sets of yarn at a good price. I decided to purchase a set of three, possibly to make Lilli Pilli. I purchased what I thought was a set of blues and was very surprised when this arrived.

These are just not colours I would have purchased, I was sure that there was a mistake but the labels showed the colour names as what I had ordered. But whereas I was expecting a teal and a black, I received an emerald green and a brown. I was just going to sell the set but decided to write to Miss Babs and say I was disappointed. They came back with the usual jargon of monitors differ etc. etc. But the next day they contacted me and said they had looked at their website and agreed that one of the colours did not match what was sent and would I like my money back or to choose another set. As my original intent was to have yarn I opted for a replacement. This did put me in a quandary though as I had learned that Miss Babs colours did not show true and I did not want to end up in the same position – being disappointed with what I got. So, rather than picking something I absolutely loved, I chose a set that I wouldn’t hate if the colours were different than I expected. With the benefit of hindsight I should have just picked my favourite and been prepared for disappointment.

This is what I got.

And it had to sit in my stash until I found the right pattern. Which happened to be this one – Suburban Wrap by Joji Locatelli. I decided it would be a good cast on for vacation and definitely when I saw Joji was holding a KAL and her patterns were on sale. I swatched to see what order I wanted the colours and also for needle size. I went down two needle sizes so my wrap is much smaller than the pattern. I did not really enjoy this knit – was it the yarn, the pattern, both? It was OK for vacation knitting but I think this will now go in my gift pile.

The funny thing though, this is the left over yarn that I want to turn into socks.

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Sewing Too

After making the decision to work only on WIPs until 1 December, I decided to apply this to sewing projects as well. Although, really, I don’t have sewing WIPs I just have the one that I should finish before starting anything else.

The languishing sewing WIP is a quilt which was my only sewing project at the beginning of the year until I hit a snag. And then it was side lined for all the garments. I purchased all the fabric for this quilt at the same time, including the backing. But when I finished the quilt top and compared the amount of backing with the top I did not have enough backing fabric. I checked what I had purchased against the pattern and I had bought the correct amount but the pattern had not taken into account that you needed two widths of the fabric. I was disappointed as I had specifically purchased the backing fabric at the same time as the main quilt fabric as it was the same style and so I had everything to make the quilt. I now had to decide if I wanted completely different material for the backing or if I wanted to piece the fabric I had with another fabric. Whatever choice I made I had to go shopping. I bought something quite different but coordinating to use as a centre panel with my original choice as the side panels.

By choosing to work on WIPs I finally sewed the two fabrics together and this weekend I trimmed then and sandwiched the quilt.

Here it is all pinned and waiting for me to quilt on my new machine.

Saturday, October 13, 2018

Wrangling the WIPs

About three months ago I was justifying the number of projects I have on the go. Despite finishing two of the projects mentioned in that post, I still have too many projects in progress. I started a new project on vacation which coincided with a knitalong and I am thinking of doing an advent knitalong again this year. Soooo between now and 1 December I am going to work on existing projects – no new cast ons. Although I am already prepared to break that rule as I was contemplating casting on socks (yes, socks) so that I have an easy project.

Also, my projects, my rules. Not included in the WIP count are the charity projects, blanket squares and the two projects that still need to be frogged. I have two projects that are close to being finished. In fact it would be nice to complete them this month and there is a good chance I could complete another in November. That leaves two projects. They are not very far along so I am not likely to finish them before December but they will get worked on before 1 December if I have finished other things. Then next time I have a WIP round up I can be surprised at how far along I am!