Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Fountain Pen Shawl

Pattern: Fountain Pen Shawl
Source: Interweave Knits Spring 2009
Yarn: Malabrigo Lace in Pink Frost, 1 skein (470 yds)
Needles: 24" US 6 circular
Started: May 4, 2009
Finished: May 22, 2009
Modifications: I did only 7 repeats instead of the 10 recommended in the pattern, so that the shawl would be smaller and more scarf-like. Also, I'm cheap and was a little concerned about my first lacey lace project.

This is the thinnest yarn I have ever worked with! It was a great project, and since it used just one 50g skein, was super portable. However, it was still not really a few-minutes-at-a-time project. You have to be able to focus for at least a couple of rows. As the width of the shawl increases, a few rows at a time becomes quite a challenge.

I bought the yarn in Naples, FL on vacation and had someone else pick the color for me. If I hadn't, this would be the same avocado/celery/lettuce/olive greens as all of the rest of my accessories. The charts for this pattern really made me appreciate charts in general. I'm definitely more of a visual person, but I don't see how anyone would shun a chart in favor of written instructions! You can see how the rows make sense together - "these 6 k2ts all line up vertically/diagonally, now I know that there will be a slant here for a while."

Plus, I think it looks super-stylish and goes with everything. Maybe I'm wrong, but no one can stop me! I sense more lace projects in the future. Gotta finished up a WIP or two first, though.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Farmer's Market Bag (in progress)

New, springy projects are in the air! Well, in my knitting bags anyway - I haven't finished any of the supposed summer-projects... yet.

The newest, started just yesterday is the Market Bag by Vicki Square. I've known about this pattern for years, from Folk Bags (book from Interweave Press, 2003), but just never got around to buying the linen for it. Fortunately, my recent obsession with natural fibers and their respective qualities has allowed me to see the options I have besides too-expensive and nowhere-stocked Louet Euroflax linen. Thus, I purchase some pretty light blue Italian bamboo yarn at my LYS, Knit 1. It's almost metallic, it's so shiny, but the tight woven band is a bit more time-consuming than it would otherwise be, on a sport-weight with an astonishing 10 plies.

Oh! And I wanted to mention, since it came in so handy for me, that this pattern is also available free online at Knitting Daily. That's where the hyperlink above goes. Not many people have made this bag (only 19 on Ravelry) BUT I have faith in Vicki when she says that the mesh won't over-stretch. She seems very wily.

Since I'm out of town (and had to corner this pattern online after the "read it over the phone to me, honey" plan didn't quite work), no pictures yet. The bag should be 14"x14" - just in time for Farmer's Market season! Yay!

Ooh, and my other almost-finished secret spring knitting project was also started while I was out of town. A scarf made from a shawl pattern. More pastels. More exploring! More info later!