January 26, 2014

Beating the January Blahs

Well as you all have heard it is freezing in this part of the world. The good news is it almost the end of January and I am hopeful that February will see temperatures a little warmer.  To help pass the time I have been staying in and knitting.  One item I have finished is this Checkerboard Lace Scarf, a free pattern from Purl Soho.  In the past I have not had much luck with patterns involving lace.  I guess my knitting skills must be improving because I was able to finish this scarf and actually enjoyed the process. You know that feeling when the pattern and yarn go so well together...well that's what happened with this scarf..the combination of pattern and Madelinetosh Merino DK in Baltic was fantastic.  Preblocking the scarf was 54" in length, and then, after blocking, it grew to 70" and the lace just opened up, making the scarf light and airy.  It was a magical thing.

Checkerboard Lace Scarf

I received this Precision Pocket Scale from Lee Valley Tools, a bargain for $16.50.  I used it for the first time knitting this scarf.   I weighed my yarn when I was nearing the end of the project and I was trying to decide if I had enough yarn to complete another row.  The scale can measure the lightest of weights making it a perfect tool for all knitters.  I definitely see a future using this scale quite often...it just takes out the guesswork and eliminates unnecessary ripping out.
Precision Pocket Scale from Lee Valley Tools
Another pattern I managed to finish was  Fallow Mittens by Melissa Schaschwary (dandiliongirl).  It is a lovely pattern, however, I am not a fan of this yarn.  It is Fyberspates Scrumptious DK and I bought it on a trip to Bath, England a year ago.  It is a 50% silk and 50% merino blend.  I found the yarn split easily and the one time I had to rip back a few rows it was challenging.  However, the yarn has a nice sheen to it and the mittens feel quite warm.

Fallow Mittens
I am also knitting an Easy Folded Poncho using some gorgeous Juniper Moon Farm Herriot, a DK-weight baby alpaca yarn.  This is a plainly knit rectangle that when completed is sewn to make a poncho.  I am almost halfway and I just pick it up when I have a couple minutes as it doesn't require any concentration.

If you live in my part of the world I hope you are finding something fun to do until it warms up.

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