Friday, July 26, 2013


Creative Yarns in Scarborough
Creative Yarns: Estelle Baby Silk Lace
I didn't take any pictures during the event, unfortunately, but I do have pictures of what I brought home with me! Team Intarsia started off in Scarborough, at Creative Yarns, where I purchased 2 skeins of the above stunning red Estelle Baby Silk Lace. I intended to make a shawl (maybe the Marjamets Shawl?) out of it for use in August, but I don't think I'll be able to complete it.

The Purple Purl: 100% Merino Fibre
100% Merino Fibre
The next stop was The Purple Purl, where I laid my hands on some of this gorgeous fibre by sweetgeorgia. I was tempted to buy out the entire shelf of it! The colours are absolutely amazing. Even this grey is brilliant. Not muted at all, the blue one especially is very bright, and the name - summer skin - is a perfect fit. I started spinning up the blue one and it's so soft and smooth and it just glides along without any predrafting. Because merino is a bit of a shorter fibre, I decided to try ripping out chunks of it and spinning those (I think it's called short-draw? I'm actually not sure, but I'm pretty convinced it would've been very difficult with the Corriedale simply because that had such a long staple length).

Araucania Ranco Multy
Araucania Botany Lace
madelinetosh lace
Romni Wools was our next stop. I knew I definitely wanted to stop by Romni's for the Araucania Botany Lace (the yellow-green-ochre colour yarn) that I'd been eyeing for the longest time, so this was the stop I'd been looking forward to the most! While I was there, I also purchased more of some yarn I have in my stash so I'd have enough to make something large with it (no pictures of that one, but it's grey and white, and I haven't a clue what weight of yarn it is), and I've been meaning to try out madelinetosh for a while, so I indulged myself. They're so bouncy and soft! The Ranco Multy jumped into my basket while I wasn't looking (I resisted the urge to get more of an orange-pink colourway that I already have 4 skeins of, as well as a light green apple colour that I also love but wouldn't know what to knit it up using).

I think the Ranco is going to become a Kittywake Cardigan and the Botany Lace something that greatly resembles a Wickerwork Pullover (only because the pattern looks dead simple and I'm using a different weight of yarn so I'd have to recalculate all the numbers anyway).
Originally I was thinking of using the Ranco to make a Rime's the Reason, but I fear I don't have enough of it, especially since my gauge would be completely off and I'd have to make a larger size, and I had already snatched up all the skeins I could find at Romni's. There was a very similar colourway, but I think I'll just find another, more suitable yarn to knit that up in.
As for the madtosh, I haven't really settled on what I might want to knit them into. I'm considering getting more of each colour so I can make two full-size garments with each of them (instead of striping as I'd originally planned), but that will have to come at a later time.

Americo Original: 765 yards of llama, FREE!!!

Last was Americo Original, the store I was always afraid to step into because a) I'd seen their yarns online and they looked mouthwatering, b) they also looked really expensive, and finally c) I knew I probably wouldn't be able to resist if I did enter. Upon entering, I noticed that their setup was really nice - they had skeins hung up so that they lined the walls, as well as some in the centre of the store that were rolled up nicely (like the Sedoso above). Then they gave us all a lovely surprise by giving us each a skein of llama lace, free! That was such a generous gift and by then I'd completely relaxed my guard, so while I stopped a while at the Brezo (I really liked the Dark Citrine and Smoky Topaz), when I stroked the Sedoso I couldn't keep my hands to myself! The Brezos I had in my hands were quickly placed back where they belonged and two skeins of Sedoso brought themselves to the register and into my tote bag.

At the end of the day we all gathered at the Rivoli for drinks, food, and prizes! I won a $75 gift certificate for Patternfish (perfect companion to all the stash I acquired during the day!) and overall just had a great time! I'm definitely looking forward to next year, but I'll have to set some rules for yarn-buying (or not-buying, rather) for probably the rest of the year until Christmas/Boxing Day sales. That's to come.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Diamond Rib Dress

Hmm... I wonder if I should rip out the back neck?
Yarn: Araucania Ranco Solid. It's a beautiful yarn that doesn't feel too special when you're knitting it up, but it softens up after a gentle wash. I used the felted join whenever I had to join together yarn ends and it worked really well, so although the swatch came out of the washing machine fine (I never handwash, and put all my knits on a cold knits/delicates cycle), I'm a touch worried about whether my dress will felt when washed.
Needles: 2.5mm (after joining sleeves and body together) & 3mm circular needles (the body and sleeves up to the join)
Gauge (over pattern): 34 sts x 24 rows = 4" x 4" (I get the feeling my row gauge is incorrect here, but it doesn't matter too much)

It's all on ravelry, more or less.
For a brief summary of what happened, though:

  • Gauge was more or less spot on, so I cast on the body in the smallest size
  • I cast on the sleeves in the same size and, comparing the sleeve measurements on the schematic to my actual arm length, simply knit to my arm length instead of trusting the pattern - stupid mistake.
    • It was too short, because when the knitted fabric was stretched over my arm, the length decreased, too! Even worse, I only noticed this after I "finished" knitting the second sleeve due to my (clearly unfounded) self-confidence.
    • The sleeves were also too tight! I could wriggle them on with lots of tugging at the top of the sleeve that I wouldn't be able to do if they were attached to the body of the dress.
    • Both sleeves were frogged and reknit to a more comfortable size and correct length.
  • Back neck was raised using a few short rows (completely winged it)

Overall I'm quite satisfied with this dress. The Ranco colour is just lovely - so vivid! - and it doesn't feel itchy against my skin. I raised the back neck using short rows and it isn't too noticeable when worn, but when the dress lies flat, it's very clear that I did one or two rows too many (there's a sort of hill-like form that is the back neck). The sleeves also feel like they could use a stitch or two more, but then the pattern might not stretch out as much.

Those are the only gripes I have with this dress. Definitely something I'm proud of! Now I just have to wait for winter to come...

Maybe I can just leave it and no one will notice