Wednesday, March 30, 2016

All Done, Except for the Fit

Knitting has been a bit thin on the ground lately as Spring cleaning has begun in earnest on the homestead front. Honestly, right now it's so discouraging as so much of the house has been ripped up and looks worse than ever. To keep my sanity I decided to take a little time and knit each day though. Even if it's just 5 minutes before I collapse into bed, I try to squeeze a little knitting in.
To that end I finished a few things this month. First up some beautiful purple ribby socks out of Gritty Knits nom.
Honestly these had been on the needles for months and were the second pair of ribbed socks I had going at once, I'm not sure what the thought process was there. I didn't enjoy knitting ribbing that much! They're done now and while they're in need of a decent blocking, I wore them anyway today for the first time. They fit so well it almost makes me want to cast on more ribbed socks. Almost.
I also started a little colorwork hat out of some leftovers.
I started just making up the pattern and then grabbed a quickie chart from Ravelry called a Norwegian star. I really love how it turned out and the absolutely gorgeous alpaca silk yarn can't be beat. The trouble though? It doesn't fit. It's too small. I can sort of get it on but it's tight and doesn't look good all stretched out. I'm debating whether a complete rip and reknit is necessary (I already wove in the ends. Ugh!) or if a good blocking will help.
While I decide whether I should go to the trouble of undoing the whole blasted thing I decided to cast on something new. I've been pretty good lately on the finishing front so I felt OK with a cast on.
I've been wanting to place an order with Blue Moon Fiber Arts for some time but the lonely single skein I have from them has been languishing for literally years! It's lovely but has a bit too much of yellow and tan in it for me but I made a deal with myself a couple of years ago that the idea was to try out the yarn before I bought more so I should knit it up before I could place another order with them. Over the years I had tried several times to find the right pattern and they always came out 'weird' to me. It mainly has to do with my aversion to pooling and the dyeing of the yarn tends to create pooling in many patterns. I love the squishy yarn though so I just plunged in and cast on a plain, old sock. 
As you can see it striped decently down the leg but then the heel created big blocks of color. I'm resisting ripping it out. That part will be hidden by my shoe anyway. Besides, the idea here is to get it knit up so you don't feel guilty buying more. So just keep knitting right?

Tuesday, March 08, 2016

Ashburton on the Wheel

I feel like the entire month of February got away from me. I was so sleep-deprived and exhausted that I just couldn't form coherent sentences for writing blog posts. With the return of some more spring-like weather and sleep I am feeling a little better though and I'm ready to dive back into blogging! 
So, today it's all about spinning. It is Tuesday after all.
After a couple of disappointing spins I decided to go for something beautiful that would make me happy. I chose this.
It's Gritty Knits Merino in Ashburton. I absolutely love all the colors so I wanted to keep them somewhat separated, although this would make an absolutely beautiful barber pole yarn as well. 
As such I split the braid in several pieces the long way and wound them into balls. Here are a few of them. 
Then, when I'm getting ready to spin one of them, I draft it out until it's super fine and thin like this.
See how much smaller the strand is? I'm spinning it fine and plan to chain-ply so I can keep the colors as they are.
I'm not even halfway done with the spinning but it's beautiful so far and I should get a nice chain-plied fingering weight yarn. We got a different couch last summer and I'm finding it harder to get comfortable to spin so I haven't been spinning as much as I used to but I really miss it so I want to make it more of a priority from now on. I would like to finish the spinning on this at least, if not the plying, by the end of the month.