Category Archives: scarf/shawl

My Olympics

Every two years there is a frenzy on Ravelry to organize or join an Olympics “team” and participate by choosing projects to knit. Remember when the US Olympic Committee brought down the hammer on Ravelry to stop calling this event “Ravelympics”? Seriously.  Remember how demoralizing it was to serious Olympic athletes that knitters were co-opting the Olympics name? No, neither do I.  End of rant.

Anyway, though I love a bandwagon as much as the next knitter, I’m not organized enough to join a team. Plus I don’t need any added pressure when I’m knitting.  So I didn’t join any Ravelry team, but I did choose some projects to knit while I watched many happy hours of cross-country skiing and speed skating and ice dancing. I love the Winter Olympics.

Here’s what I completed (I seemed to need some sort of colorwork fix):
Snowflake Hat by Jenny Kostka (heavily modified – I basically just used the snowflake chart and threw it on a Shrek Hat. 80 sts on a #7 needle, Cascade 220 worsted weight wool. But it is a beautiful simple pattern, Jenny! I love grey and yellow almost as much as I love grey and red):
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Speaking of grey, I also love grey and grey! This is Little Scallops Hat by Maria Carlander. The pattern is in Swedish, but there’s an English translation at the bottom of the page.  It’s written as a child’s hat, but once again, I really just threw the colorwork chart (which I am cuckoo-crazy about!) on a Shrek Hat. 80 sts on a #7 needle, more Cascade 220.
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I love love LURVE this sock yarn – it’s Schoeller +Stahl Limbo Color, sadly discontinued. It’s a beefy dk-weight sock yarn that knits up in these amazing wide stripes that please me. 44 sts on #4 needle, magic-looped. The pattern is my Easy Toe-Up Sock pattern, which not coincidentally, is my go-to sock pattern.
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I used up some handspun! This is Age of Brass and Steam, one of my alltime favorite shawl patterns (this is my third go-around), using Painted Tiger silk and merino fiber which I spun carried with a strand of sparkly white KidSilk Haze.  This isn’t blocked (I am still not 100% confident about blocking KSH and also yarn that has a heavy silk content) and is also not a great photo. But you get the idea.
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I’m tired of buying dumb pillows! It came to me like a lightning bolt (DOH!) that I could use my own pattern, the Easy Mosaic Pillow, to make some nice colorful new pillows for our couch. I used some leftover bulky weight big box yarn. I love how it turned out. Cat is optional.
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Finally, there is one project that I specifically started for the Olympics, which I am still working on (and will probably not be done until the next Olympics). This is Welsh Blanket Boomerang – a 45-row mosaic pattern shawl triangle in fingering weight yarn. The green is handspun fiber of unknown origin (well, I spun it, but I don’t know what the fiber is); the blue is Ball and Skein fingering. It will be gorgeous when it’s done, but it’s slow knitting.  Also, mosaic knitting needs to be blocked with a heavy hand, so it bothers me that it’s so scrunchy and not-beautiful as I knit it. I want to steam-iron it as I go, but that is the road to Crazy Town. Here’s what it’s supposed to look like:
welsh_blanket_mediumHere’s what mine looks like:
image_medium2I’m always sad when the Olympics end, especially the WInter Olympics. It was nice to have an excuse to start a billion new projects, and it was nice to knit them while watching all the skiing and skating and shooting.

 

Snow Day Knitting

Like everybody in the Northeast, we are experiencing a seemingly never-ending cycle of snow storms, school delays, snow days and power outages. I work at a school, which is not the same one my son attends, so there is a whole other layer of excitement when school closings are announced. Today I had a snow day and my son did not. That is weird.

Now of course any knitter worth his or her salt will seize the opportunity to have some snuggly snow-day knitting projects lined up, and I am no exception. In keeping with my New Year’s Re-Energization to knit up my handspun, I knocked this out:
Quaker Yarn Stretcher

Quaker Yarn Stretcher by Susan Ashcroft. Easy and perfect for handspun. This allowed me to use every inch of 220 yards of superwash Corriedale from Spunky Eclectic Fiber Club. This colorway was “Sundown”, and the fiber was fractal spun (I split the fiber in half lengthwise, then spun one half from end to end, and broke the other half into 4 parts and spun them end to end in the same color order, then plied the two halves together).

I love this pattern – honestly, these are not my colors in any way, shape or form (the double-edged sword of the automatic shipment of a fiber club), so I think this fiber was languishing because it didn’t appeal to me visually.  But I love this scarf – I would definitely wear this. Highly recommend. Thank you, Susan Ashcroft!

My other snow day project was a pair of cozy socks. This is my Easy Toe-Up Sock pattern, in Limbo Color yarn, on size 4 magic loop needles. I love dk weight sock yarn – still very wearable as socks, but it knits up so much more quickly. I am in serious love with this yarn, as evidenced by these, which are my favorite handknit socks.
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