knitting around

Posted on Posted in designing, lace/shawls, projects

i’ve been on a bit of a hat kick lately; i’ve now got my third hat in two weeks on the needles. there’s something about hat projects that i love—or maybe it’s many things that add up to one big plus.

i won’t list them all here because you could probably recite them in your sleep. the top three for me are probably portability, technical simplicity (once you’ve got a cast-on number), and speed of completion. what’s more satisfying than a project i can complete in a single evening?

i LOVE this new one in the deep green organic color grown qoperfina pakucho cotton sport; it’s SO soft! i got blockhead to model it, but he didn’t do it justice. not that i’m much better, but at least i’m capable of smiling when a fabric makes me happy.

plus, the hat fits me better . . .

this one is a gift, however, so i’m going to have to knit another for myself. in the meantime, i cast on another hat to knit on over morning coffee

this one in rich cinnamon chocolate features the pattern from the sign of four sock around the brim to add to our growing collection of soft, sock-inspired caps. i’m just happy to have a little travel project that i know i can reach for in almost any social situation. it’s compact, easy to knit, and yet interesting enough to keep me busy.

i’m going to need several projects like this to take with me later this week when i head for watkins glen, NY to teach at the finger lakes fiber retreat. erica and i are packing the space car full of bare naked wools yarns for a special trunk show/selling event on friday evening at 6 pm at the finger lakes fibers yarn store. we’ll have samples galore, currently available bare naked yarns AND a couple of pop-up special edition yarns to share.

here’s an example from a test batch we had spun up in our search for the new breakfast blend yarns. it’s the same merino/alpaca blend in a gorgeous  silver gray, closest to our morning smoke color but a bit lighter. while the fiber has an incredible softness and sheen, the final yarn isn’t as lofty as the existing breakfast blend we are looking to reproduce.

it is, however, nice and smooth and perfectly balanced. it offers incredible stitch definition and wow, what a color, right?? we are putting together kits for the hourglass throw with this yarn, to sell at the event. and i’m thinking that we should simultaneously put some in our online shop as well, to go live at the time the event opens.

my homework this weekend is to knit a big hourglass swatch so we can photograph it for the kit cover. you could also knit the heavier versions of wheaten with this yarn; it would be lovely and SO cozy.

i finally gave myself a whole afternoon to knit yesterday, which allowed me to get over the hump on my sea pearl cardigan project. i needed some focused quiet time with it to work the transition between the upper body and the lower body. mission accomplished; i am most of the way through the first repeat now.

speaking of sweater knitting, craftsy is having a big, site-wide sale on all classes, including my button bands and buttonholes class—check it out by using this link or clicking on the icon in the sidebar. we’ll get a little kickback if you make a purchase, whether it’s my class or someone else’s; how cool is that?

ok, now back to the cardigan . . .

where the pinstripe pattern in the bodice was pretty subtle, the motif in the lower body is much more highly embossed and fancy, i can’t wait til a little more of it is complete—looking forward to seeing it in the fabric is a big motivator for me. the pattern is larger, but not all that complicated; i will still be able to work on this while traveling and knitting in mixed company.

the sweater has reached another exciting stage in that it is now long enough to be able to hang it on the dress form or try it on myself. this time i didn’t take silly bathroom mirror pictures to show you, haha.

the transition between upper and lower body hits at a nice level, i think—low enough to totally clear the bust, even on someone who is fuller than i am there, but high enough to be feminine and to maintain a nice vertical line (the height of the transition changes according to size as well,so no worries that it will be wrong for you if you are a bigger size then the one shown).

and of course, it will all look a thousand percent better when it’s off the needles and blocked.

i love the shape of the neckline, redesigned  to be slightly different than that of the india print henley, which was the inspiration for this sweater. i’ll probably give it a short-sleeved version as well; i wanted to add that option to the india print, but we ran out of time for that.

i also have my second jazz strings sock still on the needles, so i’ll bring that along to finish up. so that’s a hat, a sweater, and a sock. oh, and of course i have a secret project i should bring, too. hmm, i’m only going away for a few days; maybe i should knti heavily on the sweater this week and leave it home over the weekend . . .

our flowers continue to be stunning—these are hydrangeas that we moved last year to a different spot because they were not thriving where we had them. we replaced them with red twig dogwoods and moved them to the south exposure (still shady on our property) and now they are already twice the size. yay.

and these fresh hosta blooms looked so pretty this morning i couldn’t resist sharing them. another plant i just adore . . . so lush.

our yard is filled with lily blooms right now and david has all of a sudden realized how very many we have.

how did we end up with so many?, he asked me the other night. haha, i said, you tell me, you planted them all! he just didn’t remember putting in this many, i guess. and who knows, maybe some of the old ones are reviving from all the rain we’ve had.

they really are something else; and the scent—it’s almost too much. but then i think of the alternative and i’m grateful we have wonderful scents swirling around us and not nasty ones.

air freshener that’s truly natural—priceless.

some of the lily plants have five or more blooms and they are huge, too. these white ones are spectacular.

alright now,i have to boogie; i’ve got some pattern writing i must get to this evening. you have a nice monday and maybe one of us will even be back with something new by tomorrow night (i have several patterns that need to be released, pending photos).

8 thoughts on “knitting around

  1. I love, love, love the cardigan which in an earlier comment I mistakenly called Sea Pearl. It has such lovely details without looking like a project requiring inordinate brain damage to knit. The white lilies are making me swoon!

  2. It is so interesting to follow the design of the new sweater. Thank you for sharing your thought processes with us. The silver grey yarn looks very nice, even if it didn’t turn out quite how you wanted. The organic cotton yarn certainly makes a mighty fine hat! Love it!

  3. What beautiful lilies! The fragrance must be almost intoxicating. We planted red twig dogwoods two years ago – love how they look in winter. They have really taken off and have overwhelmed everything else planted in that bed, including hydrangeas. Pruning is called for, but in this heat?!

  4. Lovely photos as usual: I especially love those lilies!
    I am looking forward to finding out more about the cardigan: those vertical details are always flattering 😉

  5. Ooooh love everything in this post. But especially the idea that I might be able to nab an hourglass kit online in that yummy looking silver grey. I’ve even been to the Finger Lakes shop I think. But am unfortunately very locationally challenged for showing up there to grab one. Any advice about good spots for moving hydrangeas to? Mine are definitely not flourishing where they are.

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