Saturday, October 18, 2014

SSKAL14 Summary

Foam sweater - so comfy! It served me well in Scotland!
Foam sweater. Survived 2 weeks in Scotland.
Now that sskal14 is over, I might as well post what I've actually accomplished aside from my Wickerwork inspired pullover. I haven't just been acquiring a bunch more yarn - I've actually been using a bit of it, too! Not quite at the same rate as that of acquisition, but better than nothing. Pictured above is my foam sweater, which I finished the day before we set off for Scotland. So of course I brought it with me (in favour of the bulkier Wickerwork). It has lasted surprisingly well, considering it's knit from singles and I used one needle size larger than I should have. It gave me a nice gauge and I liked the feel of it, but going down to 2.5mm needles might have made it slightly more hard-wearing. Nonetheless, it's holding up and so incredibly comfortable! I might have to make myself another sometime in the foreseeable future. Those contiguous saddle shoulders are also quite nice, if I do say so myself. I think the slight puckering at the shoulder/chest area is probably due to the funnel neck, so I might make a crew neck next time.

Hopefully I don't run out of yarn!
Grace in Juniper Moon Farm's Findley

 And now here's another one that I started during the sskal14. Another improvised pattern - I should probably have ripped back and made the shoulders a little wider, but they're okay as is, too. Something to keep in mind for next time (though I've been through this before and I never seem to remember for next time). Terrified I might run out of yarn though! I haven't weighed it or anything, but it seems like I might either have just enough or might run out maybe 3/4 of the way down the next sleeve! We'll see what happens. The yarn is Juniper Moon Farm's Findley, which is a pleasure to work with! It's very silky smooth and amazingly soft both in the ball and when knitted up. I didn't have any troubles with it after blocking the swatches, and I tried to rub it between my hands a bit to see if anything would fuzz up: nothing did. I'm hoping that the full shirt will stay in that perfect condition too after lots of wear!

Sherwood hasn't budged an inch. Nope.

"Whatever happened to Sherwood (above) and that Sheep Sweater you've been working on for practically forever now?", you might ask. Well. About that. To tell the truth, they have moved not an inch! In fact, whereas before the sskal I had one sleeve for the sheep sweater halfway completed, I finally decided that because the ease was so different for the sleeve and the body, I would frog the sleeve and just make the sweater into a vest instead. So technically there is actually less of the sheep sweater now than there was before, but I'm more done than I was before, percentage-wise. Hurrah! As for Sherwood... I've got nothing. No excuses, nothing. I just didn't pick it up over that entire time. At all.

Still mostly in the same shape now as it was then.
I did have a great time looking at everyone's work, though I didn't really keep up with the conversations at all (which might have been the whole point of the KAL, but eh). Congratulations to the winners of the giveaway, and I look forward to next year, considering how much I did get done over this!

Sunday, October 12, 2014


Brown Sheep Company Nature Spun Fingering
 My stash, that is.

I am going to defend myself, though. I made a Craftsy purchase a couple of weeks ago mainly in order to get a large quantity of white/natural yarn for a project/exhibition idea. And they had that fall sale going on, so it worked out perfectly. 30 balls of Brown Sheep Company Nature Spun fingering weight yarn in the natural colourway (not pictured with its companions above) went into my cart for the project, followed by a couple of the other colours they offered for that same yarn since it was such a good deal and the shipping didn't go up when I kept adding stuff. But then I kept looking. And wound up with these in my cart as well:

Cascade 220 Worsted
Cascade Heritage
Shipping stayed the same, so I might as well, right? I've never worked with Cascade 220, but I get the feeling it's probably a good all-around yarn, and Zenith caught my eye the moment it came out, so there's one match down (which helps me whittle down my queue, too). Then the Heritage went into the cart for a future Arabella (already purchased, swatching now).

That water retted stuff REEKS!
Louet Flax (Bleached, Fine, Water Retted)
I've also placed an order for linen yarn via Etsy, but that has yet to arrive. They're for a related planned show though, or at least a body of work if not an entire show. So while waiting for that to come to my doorstep, I went to Romni's to get some flax fiber (also for that body of work).

Elsebeth Lavold LinSilk
And since I was there, as I would probably need more linen and linen-blend yarns later on for that body of work anyway, I grabbed all the cream colour Elsebeth Lavold LinSilk I saw in the basement on sale (6 skeins total, picture below). Already have an idea for what to make with it, too, if I can figure out what needles I need to get the fabric I want. I'm really confused about the weight of this yarn. It's listed as a worsted, and the suggested needle sizes are 4-4.5mm, but it was waaaaaaay too loose and hole-y when I tried to knit with 4mm needles. So I went down to 3.5mm and got an okay looking swatch. But then it kind of became looser after I washed and blocked it (which took a lot longer than I expected, since I'm used to wool stuff drying really quickly). So I went back and knit another swatch with 3.25mm needles. It's drying now, and it looks a little bit better, but I usually use 3.25mm needles for fingering weight yarn, and this is supposed to be a worsted! Is it because of the difference in fiber content than I usually work with (i.e. wool and wool blends)? Or is it really just not a worsted weight at all? It's my first time working with linen (and linen blend), so I really don't know what to expect.

Istex Einband
 Now these ones here are from Iceland, a little while back. I didn't go, but these were brought back for me as souvenirs (upon my request). A lot cheaper than I expected when I placed my order! I could probably use one more disc of the Plotulopi in jasper red, but we'll see what happens.

More Istex Einband
Istex Plotulopi