Saturday, January 31, 2009

First FO of 2009

I was itching to knit with this yarn. It was in my possession for one week, but it was calling to me, the tiny hairs were whispering, it was wrapping itself around my fingers as I slept..

Okay, that is a bit much. But you know that yarn that as soon as you see it, you need to knit it -- but only the most perfect project will do? Yeah, that's this yarn. My husband put two skeins of beautiful Louet Bonnie yarn in my Christmas stocking, which was a lovely surprise when I returned from my trip to Cuba. This wool-silk blend (94 and 6%, respectively) is so soft and absolutely gorgeous that I knew I had to knit a little something pour moi with that yarn. A lot of knitters use gifted yarns to make things for other people, but Jack got the yarn for me and so it remains for me.

At first, I didn't think that "Forest Floor" was an appropriate name for this colourway, but after unwinding the skein knitting row upon row of gorgeous, subtle colour changes, Forest Floor seems just right. There is just over one full colour repeat in each 80m skein.
I whipped up this little neckwarmer yesterday evening, using just less than a skein. There are only a few meters left, to hopefully balance out any mismatched colour in the second project I intend to use this for..

Pattern: Cowl'd and Frosty Morning, by Kelly Herdrich
Yarn: Louet Bonnie, colour 03 Forest Floor
Needles: 6mm (5.5 would have sufficed)
New skills: err.. Okay, I broke my own rule with this one. No new skill with this project.
Modifications: 1 extra repeat of pattern

I plan to use the other skein for the stripes on a matching pair of mittens. I just need to find a solid-colour yarn that deserves to be knit alongside this one. Bonnie is a bit lightweight for a bulky, so hopefully something appropriate will turn up.

This pictures don't quite do the yarn justice. It is gorgeous. Gorgeous.

(If you're wondering about my recent post on the proliferation of cowls and my subsequent knitting of a cowl, let me tell you this: I do not have a problem with cowls. They're quick knits, instant gratification, and I imagine they are much more comfortable for knitters in warmer climates who may long for scarves, but are too sensible to knit something they'll get no use of. Hey, I live in chilly Montreal and I made one! It's just that so many of these patterns seem to be turning up and they are, let's face it, remarkably similar. You know, like the dozens of garter stitch or 1x1 rib or mistake rib scarves you find on Ravelry. It's great that the internet allows so many people to become self-published designers, don't get me wrong, but how many freaking garter stitch scarf "patterns" are really needed?)

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

What are you excited to knit?

Goodness. I'm suddenly really excited to learn cables. First, I saw Alexis Layton's lovely Cabled Hot Water Bottle Cosy. There is something so appealing about this. I love the natural coloured wool and the chunky cables. Sure, I already knit a hot water bottle cover, but I won't let that stop me. Especially since my hot water bottle (and lovely alpaca cover) kept my feet warm last night -- while the power was out and we had no heat for 4hrs. Scheduled yet wholly surprising maitenance! Apparently my landlord had been notified of this scheduled outage, but he definitely failed to notify his tenants. Ah well. OnedayIwillownmyownhome.

AND THEN I saw the absolutely AMAZING Owl sweater -- I can't believe I had not seen this yet. It is so beautiful!! And there are already a few pages of successful patterns on Ravelry.

Yessss. I will learn cables.

(Eventually. My next big project will be a sweater for the hubby.)

Saturday, January 10, 2009

The Knitter's Book of Yarn by Clara Parkes

This book is amazing. Amazing! It tells you about all different types of fibres, where they come from, how they are harvested or created, and how you can expect them to re/act when knit.

My brother gave it to me for Christmas/my birthday. It was on my wishlist, and I'm very happy to have it! The book is well-written and really informative. Not to mention that it really feeds into my desire for an alpaca farm and angora bunnies.. I was reading this on the train home to Montreal after flying back from Cuba and was actually giggling aloud. My seatmate kept peering at my book, presumably wondering how knitting could be so funny.

I haven't checked out all the patterns, but they seem pretty nice. Nothing jumped out at me, but I'm sure I will knit something. The ruffled scarf is quite nice.
I highly recommend this book. It is a great resource.