Sunday, January 14, 2007

Sock yarn is OK to buy, right?

According to the rules of 'knit from your stash', anyways... Well, I was concerned I didn't have enough of the Rowan 4-ply tweed that I bought over the holidays, for the intended project, Shedir from Knitty. And, since I bought the wrong weight of yarn (stupid jet lag!) I would have had to hold it doubled. So now I have cast on for a new (mystery) project, and I still don't think I have enough. So... I broke down and bought 2 more balls. This way I won't have to make it shorter, or anything like that. Here's a decent photo of the yarn. Finally, some decent natural light was streaming in the bedroom window.
The yarn in real life is a touch more purple, but this picture gives you the idea well enough. The
color is claret (013). Here's a much better detail shot, but it's only half way through I pattern repeat, anyways.
I like it so much, I want to make it full length, hence the extra sock yarn purchase. Now, I am NOT a color knitter (no fair isle here, posted by me), but I don't dislike the look of it. For example I find most of Alice Starmore's work, not to mention Eunny Jang, among others, color work absolutely stunning. I guess that I am just intimidated by dealing with many strands of skinny yarn on tiny needles. But it's so beautiful! Well, since sock yarn is OK, I purchased enough sock yarn (2 ply) from Virtual Yarns to make Eunny's Endpaper Mitts. I figure a small project that is practical and wearable (and relatively inexpensive compared to a whole sweater, like the Venezia pullover) is a decent way to start color knitting. I saw the Venezia pullover in the Winter 2006 Interweave knits, and I thought it was absolutely stunning. And I would look fabulous in it. But colorwork AND steeking? Well, let's see how I feel next year, when I've completed my first colorwork project, and I'm off the yarn diet. Oh, and BTW, for those of us on this blog who are interested in aquiring tweedy 4-ply yarn in sweater quantities, Virtual Yarns offers free shipping for orders larger than 12 pounds anywhere in the world. So their yarn might not be the best deal pricewise, but shipping a pound or two worth of yarn across the atlantic might make a reasonable difference in pricing a project. I will report on the yarn when I recieve it.

So what about the hat which prompted my decision to purchase a sock yarn? Well, as I was investigating my Rowan options, I found out that not all of the colors available in the 4 ply are available in other weights. Count on me to gravitate towards one of them. Harrumph! I found a very similar shade in the Virtual Yarns 3 ply (approximately DK weight), so I got enough for the hat. I don't consider it a breaking of the yarn diet, because it's a small quantity, the color I liked would never have been at the lys in the right weight (or anywhere in the world), and I planned this project well before the New Year anyways. So there.

Now for the blue tweed sweater progress shot:
Here are the back and the left sleeve. The colors are quite accurate in the picture. At first, I was
a bit worried about how the sleeve would look with only one cable panel (okay, surrounded by a braid on each side) because it's so wide, but now that it's done, and can be viewed with the back, I think it looks good. And it's a quick knit, I finished the sleeve in less than 2 weeks, because of all the reverse stockinette. And, holding up the sleeve up to the back, I figure I don't have the sleeve cap problems I had with the purple sweater. So for the time being, the mystery project will be my thinking knit, and the blue sweater left front will be my easy knit.


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