On the Needles

hamsawip

For the past week or so I have been blissfully polygamous with my projects, but yarn is in the mail for the shawl I’ll have to prioritize for a Labor Day wedding (not at Burning Man, to my great annoyance), so I wanted to document these projects for you before they get sidelined for awhile. Above you see the beginning of a Hamsa scarf, yet another Anne Hanson pattern. What can I say? The woman is a genius. The bold lines of this pattern stand up to the relatively high level of varigation in the colorway, and I couldn’t be happier. The lace is not super complicated, but it’s interesting enough that I’ve been using it as a mini-reward system: grade a paper, knit two rows; grade a paper, knit two rows. My summer class is allllmost over, and I can almost taste my freedom. Of course, I’ll really just be switching taskmasters– now instead of preparing for class and grading papers all the damn time, I’ll be working on my dissertation all the damn time. But it’s exciting, productive work, which is vastly preferable to the tedium and heartbreak of grading papers.

Speaking of heartbreak, I managed to undo my grafting fail, and have finished knitting all the pieces of my Nadine tunic, which are currently sitting around monopolizing all the KnitPicks Options cables in the house. (Pro tip: they double as the longest stitch holders ever, which are necessary for this project.) Maaaybe later today I will make another attempt at the grafting — or maybe I will let them languish for awhile longer and think about what they’ve done wrong.

rickwip

This is the beginning of a Rick sock, from Cookie A’s new book. The stitch pattern is ingenious; now that I’ve got the hang of it, I don’t need to look at the chart or even use a row counter, because you just apply a pretty simple algorithm to the stitches as they present themselves to you. Caper Sock from String Theory has instantly become my favorite sock yarn ever — it’s 80% merino, 10% cashmere, and 10% nylon, and it’s super squishy and super soft. It’s a little heavier than other sock yarns I’ve used, and knits up into a nice, sturdy fabric. The one word of warning I’d give is that since it’s a little heavier than your average sock yarn, you may have trouble getting gauge with some patterns — with these Rick socks, my gauge is a little larger than specified, but that’s just fine, because my legs are a little larger than the size the pattern is written for anyway (but not large enough to warrant doing an extra repeat of the lace), and it seems to be working out fine.

I fell so hard for this yarn when I started working with it that I immediately up and ordered another skein in a different color, without even having definite plans for what it would become:

stringtheoryfusion

Sigh — I am such a sucker for blue-green. String theory has some gorgeous dye jobs (I am currently lusting after the new “Blue Hill” colorway & am thinking seriously about jumping on it before they sell out at Sock Summit next month), but they suffer from a serious inability to name their colorways. They seem to default to “Fusion” when they can’t think of anything else — currently on their website, they are selling a parrot green, a sea green, a purple, a rose, and a yellow under that name, which is also the name of the skein above. Clearly, what they need is to hire a poet to name their colors for them.

::cough cough::

One thought on “On the Needles

  1. Just a single year ago i wouldn’t have considered knitting a political act, but after learning about Earth Democracy, living, local economies, and food systems, i’d say it’s a damned daring thing to do.

    Artisanize yo’self!!

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