Progress on my WIPs

Hi there yarn-lovers. I hope you all had a fabulous Women’s Day and enjoyed your long-weekend? I certainly did. A variety of WIPs got some attention, I started something new, and I’m doing my best to be Bolt (“zoom zoom”) and get something finished…

Cowls

The Adele’s/Colourspun Striped Cowl that I started for Caitlin was paused for a bit until I could get another skein of Aran from Dana/Colourspun at the Bryanston Organic Market on Thursday. You might remember that I also needed to get the kid mohair locks for my weaving workshop this weekend…

 

Caitlin decided to start knitting herself a Hufflepuff scarf! Insert shrieks of delight from me!! We got a Rowan kit at the Arthur Bales Sale, with sunshine yellow Baby Merino Silk DK. And I gave her some black Merino-Alpaca yarn from my stash. Not local yarns, but a sale is a sale, nê! She even took it with to the market! So her and I had an absolutely magical morning knitting together, chatting, eating and drinking (the best!) chai tea at the market before we went home. Magical, because my teen was happy to knit and chat to her mom (miracles alive!!) instead of texting with her phone glued to her hand.

The little shite managed to twist my arm into buying her some of Dana’s Super Chunky and gorgeous hand-spun yarns. I admit that I gave in – who wants to stifle their child’s creativity when they’re starting to share your passion? (But she’ll die if she ever touches my stash!) This is the hand-spun she chose…to platz for! And some of the other gorgeous handspuns that Dana had there.

Some of the hand-spun is for a stripe-feature in a Y Not Cowl. The other yarn is ColourSpun Super Chunky (a single spun SuperWash Merino) in a deep navy/teal. It started off looking quite, but my experience with the same Super Chunky in my ColourSpun Coal Holland Cowl recently proved correct. It grew a lot as soon as I washed it. A super quick knit, finished in no time at all and Meghan loves it! It’s my first ever cables-knit!! Finally! Whoop whoop for me! If you’ve never tried cables either, this is the perfect pattern to ease yourself into it. So easy!

 

Shawl or blanket?

This weekend we spent nigh on 12 hours or more at Crawford Prep Sandton for a music competition. It was the perfect opportunity to make significant progress on the WIP I’ve been working on the longest (since May). It’s an illusion shawl called Read Between The Lines (RBTL) and this is my project page on Ravelry. It uses two Scheepjes Whirls worked together in such a way that it creates an optical illusion as it moves. Some of the very talented ladies at the Magaliesberg Knit & Breathe Retreat earlier this year took their RBTL FOs with and I decided I had to make one.

I think I’m still not even half way with each cake, but I’m close. And the shawl is already BIG, so it’s going to be massive by the time I finish.  I can already see some of the illusion. Can’t wait for the next big colour change…

 

Much anticipated wrap

On Sunday I cast on the Suburban Wrap, designed by Joji Locatelli. It was in my Project Plans post earlier this month. After some doubt and indecision, I’ve stuck with the colours I was planning to use… Colour 1 is a variegated One of a Kind Yarns MSin (sock weight single spun 100% Merino). Hartlam Darling Sock in Mint (70% Baby Alpaca, 20% Silk, 10% Cashmere) was going to be colour 2. However, I have 2 skeins (800m altogether) of it and I really wanted to do something bigger with it. I want to make the most of it because it’s one of “my preciousssses”. So Colour 2 has been changed to Nurturing Fibres Single Spun Lace in Venice colourway. Colour 3 is Btrix Yarns Inspired by Alpaca in Platinum (100% Alpaca).

Over all, I’m really happy with the decision and how it’s looking. I love how much faster it’s going than I thought it would. And these yarns are just too difficult to put down. I think I’ll be taking it with me to knit on wherever I go. Sorry poor little lonely sock – you still won’t have a friend to call your own!  

Started off with Hartlam Darling Sock…

…and frogged back to replace with Nurturing Fibres Single Spun Lace, 2 strands together…

 

Sock? What sock?

Talking about the other sock, I think I’m about halfway with the foot section, but it’s chilling out in it’s little shwe-shwe Yarn Bling bag until I get around to it again.

 

Mini-shawl

I started this Picabeau pattern in mid-July, using Stellar Fibreworks Super Duper Sock yarn that I bought from Gina Ross (Natural Yarns) at the Magaliesberg Knit & Breathe Retreat. It’s 100% Superwash Merino, called “Danced the Night Away”. Don’t you just love the names that Gina gives her yarns?

I’m not following the pattern because I’d like the flexibility of having a garter stitch side and a stocking stitch side. So I’ve experimented with a few modifications, and I plan to load them onto a Ravlery project page some time. For the life of me, I have no idea why I put some of the projects I’ve started on Ravelry, and others not. This one has been on a bit of a break and I’m not sure when I’ll get going on it again. I’ll probably wear it in winter, so I won’t rush to get it done.

 

Crochet

I’ve managed to nearly finish the first motif of the Eastern Jewels version of the Persian Tiles Blanket. A friend and I bought the kit from Wool & More (a shop in Plett) many months ago. Joy went to so much trouble for us and we were thrilled when the kits were delivered. I struggle with crochet because it makes my left hand cramp terribly. So small doses, I’m afraid. At least I have another eight years to finish it before Meghan leaves home 😄.

 

Weaving

I’ve started swatching for Meghan’s fox-hoodie and I think I’ve settled on a pattern. However, I’m on a deadline to finish a scarf for Christo. I’ve only set up the warp and done a tiny bit of weaving on it, so I’d better get cracking. Because Friday I’ll be taking my loom to Hekpoort for another weaving workshop with Glynis, and it had better be empty by then!

I wasn’t  happy with my last weaving project, for a variety of reasons. The yarn I bought (a commercial German brand), specifically because it had a gradient, was expensive. It enfuriated me that the manufacturer knotted vastly different colours together, twice or three times in one ball! This meant cutting out big chunks of yarn to try to match the colours in the warp gradient. I despised it from the start, so much so that my technique sucked, to put it bluntly. I just wanted to finish it and get it off the loom. Not a relaxing weave.

So I chose to do the one below (for Christo again, because Caitlin keeps stealing the “nasty” one). I chose colours from some of the Elle Pure Gold DK that I’ve had in my stash for many years and used a random stripes generator for Christo to choose a combination he liked. The joys of acrylic – I can just focus on practising technique and not worry about whether it ends up being fugly (yes, that is a real word! 😆).

I’m sure Glynis is looking at this picture, saying “Advance the warp” 😄

So, for the last day and a half-ish, it’s been as much weaving as possible! Which means only one blogpost for this week.

 

I’m so satisfied with my WIPs right now that I’ve been happy to put them down and only work on them in the evenings. What? Did you really think I’d only touch my knitting again when I finished weaving the scarf?! 😉

 

See you next week and I hope you’ll join me at Alliepad Alpakkas Farm Visit and Fibre Festival on the 26th of August.

Bx

 

PS – The outcome of the competition is bittersweet. Caitlin got through to the national finals at the end of September, exactly the same weekend as the Quenti Farm Festival 😭. Where is the emoji for crying such a flood of tears that you’re so dehydrated, your tongue swells?? 😄

She has some live gig performances on YouTube – Cait Sings Live 💖.

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