Saturday, February 10, 2007


This was the most recent addition to my stash, purchased at a booth from the Christmas market in town. I fell for the semi-varigated red colorway, and purchased 3 hanks, totalling about 660 yards. I really should have bought a fourth, but I felt a little guilty about buying something for myself, when I was supposed to be shopping for friends and family. Needless to say, I'll never find the vendor in the next 10 months. The vendor also pulled out a gorgeous blue colorway, after the red was gone! Oh well, maybe next year...
Isin't it pretty? It sortof feels like the Manos aran weight that I have fondled in a former LYS, and bought for a friend. Similar softness, slightly thick-and thin single ply, and strong scent of vinegar. All I could get from the non-english speaking saleswoman, was that it was 100% wool, of which variety I have no clue. When I saw it, I wanted it to become this:
the Shetland Triangle Shawl by Evelyn A. Clark from Wrap Style. The original was made fom a lace/fingering weight cashmere, and I knew it was a bit risky to swap in an aran weight and size up the needles, but I figured it could be done, and that I had enough yarn to make a shoulder shawl/scarf thing. I swatched it, and it looked bad, like a puckered up egg carton. I then knitted a few chart repeats of the Swallowtail Shawl from Fall 2006 IK, also by Clark. I thought it looked OK, but the thought of making nupps, and doing a p5tog with this stuff made me cringe. Here's a craptacular photo that I took before deciding to frog.
It's kindof hard to see the lace, but blocking would have helped. After I knit those 2 repeats, I put it on hold for faster gratification projects, where I could see good results before blocking. I mean, who would want to knit for weeks, only to block and have it not turn out the way that they had hoped? So, after seeing the beginnings of a lace and cable capelet from the Holiday 2006 issue of Vogue Knitting on tweeding along, I was inspired. Here's a picture from the magazine preview.
I figure that this is the one for this yarn. It was designed for a worsted/aran weight yarn (Nashua Handknits Creative Focus Worsted), and the recommended needle size is .1 mm smaller than the needle I thought looked best for this yarn and a lacy pattern (the Denise US 10 is 5.6 mm, while a 'standard' US 9 is 5.5 mm, go figure!). I've knit a few rows, and so far so good, but not enough to photograph well. So, I found a winner, and I can get this lovely yarn out of the stash! The only problem? I'm about 220 yards short of the pattern requirements. I figure I can do the lace in the nice bright variegated market yarn, then do the cabled yoke and collar in a dark solid wool. I am clearly not opposed to mixing textures and colors in a project, and I share Carter's opinion that cables and variegated yarn don't always work well together. The color can detract away from the texture. There are exceptions, though, so this is not a hard and fast rule for me.
The other problem? I don't have the stash I used to have before moving because I donated a serious chunk of the stash to Thrace. So I have no solid dark colored worsted/aran weight yarns in the stash that would go with the red! I *could* go to the LYSs and see what's available (this isin't breaking the KFYS rules, because you're allowed to buy exactly enough to complete your project), but after surfing their web pages, I decided that I really wanted a black tweed. In comes eBay to the rescue! A discontinued black Rowan Yorkshire Tweed at bargain basement prices and free shipping. So my first stash-bust is a success in principle.


No comments: