December 28, 2015

Scrap Yarn Sock Advent Calendar 2.0

Scrap Yarn Sock Advent Calendar 2.0

One thing I learned from the previous Scrap Yarn Sock Advent Calendar was not to mix stockinette sections with stranded knitting, because one thing I don't quite have a handle on yet is gauge in stranded socks. So, this time I went exclusively with tried and true stockinette. I also stuck to just Wollmeise Pure and Twin to keep the look as consistent as you can with random colors and changing stripe width. Still, the end result isn't something that exactly soothes my soul; the legs are relatively harmonious, but the feet are... not. Still, I think this time I got a pair that I actually can wear, since at least the fit is right. And it was fun to take part in the KAL organized by the Missä neuloimme kerran bloggers, whom I thank for coming up with yet another creative way to use up yarn scraps!

The Ravelry project page

December 14, 2015

A Very Cloudy Nuvem

A Very Cloudy Nuvem

A Very Cloudy Nuvem

Since my second Nuvem turned into my favorite shawl to wear, it wasn't a hard decision to cast on a third one. And while knitting it I also broke the recond previously held by my second Nuvem: the WIP that was worked on the longest and yet finished. I'm generally not the kind of person who casts on a project and still feels like finishing it a year later; those projects usually end up in the frog pond. However, while there were numerous periods of time when I lost interest in my third Nuvem, I was pretty sure all this time I would eventually finish it. It was something that was comfortable to return to even after a long break, and I knew I would like the finished product.

As the last time, I replaced the ruffled edging with 2 x 2 ribbing. The yarn is Wollmeise Lacegarn as usual, this time in one of my favorite Wollmeise colorways, Wolke. I also used slightly larger needles than before, for a looser gauge and large size, and I can see and feel the difference. Part of the reason might be I've put my second Nuvem through a tumble dryer and I may not remember what it looked like before (it did not felt, just shrank slightly, which was my intention after it had stretched out a bit in use).

This is definitely going to be an everyday shawl. Based on my previous experience, Wollmeise Lacegarn wears amazingly well; after my previous Nuvem has been through the washer a few times (on wool cycle) and the dryer once (also on wool cycle) and still looks as good as new, I'm convinced about the quality of the yarn.

The Ravelry project page

December 3, 2015

Squircle 2.0

Squircle 2.0

Squircle 2.0

During his workshop in Finland Stephen West mentioned, possibly jokingly, that he doesn't knit socks for himself because his feet are so big, but that if someone wishes to knit him a pair of socks he can give his address to send them to. I figured I'm not intimidated by large feet, so I asked him for his foot measurements. I ended up knitting the biggest socks I've ever made. There aren't many sock patterns that come in his size, so I had to calculate the stitch counts to fit his foot as instructed in the Squircle pattern. We still don't know if they actually fit him right, but we should find out in a week or two when the socks reach him.

The Ravelry project page

December 2, 2015

Der Doodler

Der Doodler

Der Doodler

The 2015 Westknits Mystery Shawl KAL is officially my favorite mystery KAL to date. The Doodler was fun and exciting to knit, and it sneakily made even a knitted-on edging enjoyable by placing it in the middle instead of the end, so that I didn't even realize what I was doing until I was well into it.

I'm also quite satisfied I managed to utilize stash from two or three years ago, including the Schwefel (which is not sure if it's a green or a yellow) which had not inspired me until I saw it next to the Mont Blanc and decided they were destined to be together. The Petit Poison Nr. 5 dark, on the other hand, is a long-term favorite Wollmeise colorway.

I'm very happy with the finished product, and this one I'm definitely keeping to myself. It's something I will be taking to my next Westknits class or get-together if I ever attend another one.

The Ravelry project page

November 21, 2015

Berry Patch

Berry Patch

Berry Patch

I'm glad I agreed when Lisa of maliha designs asked me to test knit her new Berry Patch pattern, because it was a joy to do! A lot of comfort knitting in garter stitch, with some slip stitch sections for variety. I'm not 100 % sure if my choice of colors was right for this pattern, because I now think some brighter colors might have worked better for a berry themed shawl, but otherwise I'm happy with the finished product. The test version of the pattern was already so well written that I can definitely recommend it just based on that!

The Ravelry project page

October 31, 2015

Wollmeise Fall Sale

Despite the fact that I'm not exactly short on yarn, a couple of months ago I decided I wanted to go to the Wollmeise fall sale, if for no other reason than to have an excuse to travel. I'd visited the brick & mortar shop a couple of a years ago, but never a special sale. In general, I try to avoid stores during their busiest sales, because I don't enjoy shopping in a crowd, but I decided to step out of my comfort zone for a moment.

At the Wollmeise Fall Sale

For practical reasons it was most convinient for me to head to the sale on its first day. Luckily I wasn't aware that apparently the first day is usually the busiest! When I got there on Monday just a few minutes after the sale had started, it was already full on. The first few hours were so busy it made browsing slightly difficult, and moving between the shelves was at times impossible. By the afternoon it had cleared up a little bit, and it was more comfortable to shop. I ended up staying for almost five hours, by which time I felt I had found the yarn I wanted, and had had time to think which yarn made sense to buy and which didn't.

At the Wollmeise Fall Sale

I was a bit surprised that, of Twin and Pure, there were quite a bit more multicolored than semisolid skeins available, and apparently, as the sale week goes on, the portion of multicolored yarn grows even bigger. The best part about being at the sale, versus online shopping, was getting a chance to see all the interesting variations of the colorways. There were so many different versions of some colors available that I could have spent hours just comparing them, had I had the space and energy to take the time to do that. However, at some point I just had to decide that the shopping was done. But I will almost certainly do this again in the future!

October 23, 2015

Ysolda & Stephen Finland Tour

Ysolda's Beyond the Raglan Class

The local yarn stores TitiTyy and Kerä decided to combine their resources and organize an Ysolda & Stephen Finland Tour, bringing them both to Jyväskylä and Tampere to give classes and offer Finnish knitters a chance to meet some international knitting designers. As soon as I heard this is happening, I decided this cannot be missed! I've been a fan of both of them for years, and of the classes available, I picked Ysolda's Beyond the Raglan and Stephen's Color Play the Westknits Way classes. In hindsight, I wish I had picked a few more of them, but initially I just wanted to make sure I get to take part in at least one class by each.

Ysolda Teague

On Wednesday October 21st I arrived at Kerä in Tampere for Ysolda's Beyond the Raglan class. It was apparent she's a genius at knitting design, which wasn't news to me, because I've thought that way ever since I first knit Rose Red back in 2009. And while I've knit relatively few sweaters and cardigans, I've knit her Cria pattern twice, because it has, by far, the best fit of any garment I've knit. She gives  a lot of thought to how knitted items fit the human body. Her class inspired me to get back to sweater knitting again. Which also makes me realize my stash isn't really built for sweater knitting, which, naturally, means I need to buy some more yarn!

Stephen West's Color Play the Westknits Way Class

On Thursday October 22nd it was time to meet Stephen. Based on my online experience of him, I knew to expect a ball of energy, but I still didn't know exactly what I was going to get into! His class was all about the joy of knitting, and I can't remember having spent a more entertaining set of three hours any time recently. He's such an artist and a personality, and has something nice to say to everyone. One of those people who light up the room. It's hard to imagine him doing anything else, because he's such a perfect fit for his current job, a knitting icon.

Stephen West & Me

For some reason I hadn't brought along any of my Westknits finished items, so for this photo I borrowed one of Stephen's samples, which is why I'm wearing a bit of peach. I believe this is his Jag in Garter Stitch, which I now absolutely have to knit for myself (in non-peach colors).

October 4, 2015

Tea. Earl Grey. Hot.

Tea. Earl Grey. Hot.

Tea. Earl Grey. Hot.

It appears a sure way to get me to knit a mystery sock is to put beads in it.  Also, a moderately complicated pattern is more appealing if you receive it in four or five parts instead of all at once.

I wanted to use the Cookie A Sock Club yarn from June, because I love the color. The green seed beads go with it nicely, although they are kind of hard to see from afar. I used a 0.6 mm crochet hook to place the beads. As usual, the beads were not uniform in size, and the hook and yarn would not fit through some of them, but luckily the majority of them worked. I do prefer the 8/0 as opposed to 6/0 beads on socks.

Ravelry project page

September 13, 2015

Strawberry Ishbel

Strawberry Ishbel

Strawberry Ishbel

My first knitting project out of self-spun yarn (but not my first Ishbel). I wanted to go for a well-tested pattern, and something where I didn't have to fear running out of yarn. This is a slightly modified version of the small size, with some added rows both in the stockinette and lace sections. It's pretty obvious in the finished product that the yarn has some uniformity issues, but I think it just adds character. Out of the thousands of Ishbels knitted, this one is almost certainly unique! It's too scratchy to be used as a scarf, but I'm OK with its only purpose being looking pretty.

Ravelry project page

August 26, 2015

Tangerine Skarabäus

Tangerine Skarabäus

After I'd put away the loom for a while because my interest in weaving had waned, I saw photos of striped and pooled woven scarves, and felt I had to try making one myself. I used Wollmeise Pure in the Skarabäus colorway as the multicolored yarn, and Küken as the solid. Skarabäus is a pretty "mild" colorway when it comes to multicolors, and the color changes don't stand out as much as with some of my previous pooling scarves, but overall I like the striped look. It makes the scarf look longer and gives it visual structure. I think my future pooling scarves are now going be more or less striped. I have some ideas for using two different multicolored yarns on the same scarf for a stripy effect.

I didn't know until recently that the name of the colorway Skarabäus refers to a beetle, scarab. Now I like the colorway even slightly more than before because of that.

The Ravelry project page