Wednesday, February 27

A little bit French

Very rarely do I come across a pattern that moves me in such a way that I have to do it right that very second. Even more rarely is it not in English. Being interested in other things during high school (debate!) meant I skipped language classes. DO NOT SKIP LANGUAGE CLASSES.

A couple weeks ago I found Châle "Gaufrette" . It was such a simple design but the yarn, the color, the simple lines of it all. It wormed it's way into my heart instantly and took hold like I imagine a leach to an open wound does. It was fierce. And then I saw it. It was in French.

The wonderful thing about the internet is that we now have quick access to people who have skill sets and experiences that we do not. I went to a forum and asked for help. Within an hour I had the pattern in English. Within a couple minutes an error was spotted and corrected with the help of a second person. I was excited to say the least.

As soon as I saw the pattern I knew I wanted to use some of the lavender laceweight I spun back in November. I am so very glad I did. The drape on this is unbelievable. While I was blocking it I wondered if it would be stiff (this particular yarn is a single and semi-felted). As soon as it was unpinned and lifted off my board my worries vanished. It hung in such a way that I wished a breeze would come in and lift it. It has that kind of hang to it.

It's not very large (at least not compared to Color Affection) but it gets the job done. It's 49" across and less than 20" long. It's size does not limit it though. The lightness in it's final weight lends itself to a casual draping as a scarf or just across the shoulders.

If I were to change anything about it it would be blocking of the points. I may very well end up getting blocking wires and redoing it at some point. This will end up in the shop as a display so I'm not too concerned about it for now. The translation of the pattern into English wasn't perfect so the end of one side took some fiddling to make it right but it was easy. Just a matter of switching stitches around a bit.

If there was ever a shawl to convince me to become a Shawl Person? It would be this one.

Tuesday, February 26

I don't do shawls

Have I mentioned that before? I feel like I must since I'm pretty much the least shawl minded person on the planet. I should clarify that though because really? I'm not a non-shawl person. I just don't wear them. I don't know how. It's true. Do I wrap? Do I fold? Tuck? Tie? There are so many options and sizes that the thought (plus my short neck and lack of shoulders) is overwhelming.

I do knit them though. Boy, can I knit them. I even have one hibernating. It'll likely be taken out of hibernation and redone as something else at this point. The yarn doesn't fit. That's neither here nor there though. You know what is?

Color Affection

A couple months ago this seemed all the rage (and still is...I hear there were quite a few at Stitches West) and it was talked about everywhere I went. Knitters were loving it and non-knitters were wanting it. One such non-knitter REALLY wanted it. She wanted two actually. One for herself and one for a gift. We got to talking and soon enough I had the pattern and the yarn in my pretty little hands.

 The colors were, no ARE, amazing. When I first opened the package I was doubtful. I'm so glad the intended person was not.

Knit Picks Palette: I've never used this yarn. It is on the thinner side of fingering and it can rub your finger a bit rough but overall it wasn't bad. It is a bit hairy so if that bothers you, pick a different yarn.
Main color: Coriander Heather
CC1: Hollyberry
CC2: Sagebrush

If you go through the gallery on Ravelry you will notice a lot of folks did a mod for the edge. That's because that sucker is tight.

 Between the many increases (all 2 stitches from the edge) and the carrying of more than one color (3 in the 3rd section of stripes) it can just get tight. It does block out but it can be a hard block. This one kept a bit of ruffle. I was worried about overblocking and distorting the garter so I shot the person an email and asked which they would prefer. They loved it as you see it there so it's been folded and packaged and is ready to ship. There ARE ways around that ripple and if it's important to you to not have it, browse the gallery. There are a lot of helpful suggestions and formulas for avoiding it.

I guess I can figure out how to wear one afterall. The size of this particular one is...well large. It's a shawl and it's meant to wrap around you in the best possible way. It's possibly convinced me to cast away my issues with them and give one a go. It's convinced a couple others to try one themselves. It does get repetitive and if you aren't paying attention you can mess up. I did (misread the pattern and plugged along pretending I was in charge of my knitting) and that's frustrating on a row that's 300+ stitches but it is totally worth it. It's a keeper.

And since I don't do shawls, stay tuned for tomorrow. Where I have another shawl. This time in some handspun of my own.