Posts Tagged ‘handspun’

Here’s how 2017 turned out:

  • 16 finished projects
  • 5 pairs of socks
  • 3 pairs of mittens
  • 3 scarves/cowls
  • 2 shawls
  • 1 baby blanket
  • 1 sweater
  • 1 hat
  • 1 poncho
  • 5 gifts knitted
  • 4 items knit for work
  • 2 new designs for work
  • 2 items knit with handspun
  • 2 spins of 4 oz. each completed (and knit into the 2 handspun projects listed above)

Finished since my last post were two pairs of socks, and a poncho I knit as a photography sample for work.

In order from most recently finished to earliest finished:

Also started in 2017, but not yet finished:

ZickZack Scarf using Queensland Uluru (solid) and Uluru Rainbow (self-striping) yarn. It’s much further along than it is in the photo above, I just haven’t taken another one recently. I haven’t yet decided if I’ll keep this or if it will be a gift.

Big Granny Square Sock Yarn Scrap Blankie using a variety of leftover sock yarns, many of which are the same yarns I’m using in my mitered-square sock yarn blankie. I started this after Interweave published a blog article on granny squares. As with my other sock yarn blanket, this is an ongoing project that will get done whenever.

Cabled Turtleneck Sweater using Knit One, Crochet Too Meadow Silk yarn. I picked up this yarn at the Keepsake Quilting/Patternworks tent sale this past June (along with several other sweater quantities of other yarns). I’m generally following the adult set-in sleeve sweater from The Knitter’s Handy Book of Sweater Patterns by Ann Budd. I will, however, make this seamless by working a three-needle bind-off on the shoulders, and picking up stitches around the armholes and knitting the sleeves downward toward the cuffs.

Fall Night Hiking Socks using Regia Design Line by Arne & Carlos sock yarn (in the Fall Night colorway). I finished a pair of socks and needed another pair for car knitting. However, all but the first three inches of this sock so far has been knit while walking on the treadmill. I’ll probably pick back up with knitting these in the car again soon, though. I also have a plane trip coming up shortly, and will probably take them along for that.

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Highlights: Lots of hats, lots of socks, and several projects for work.
Lowlights: Only one sweater done. 😦 And I would have liked to do more spinning and weaving.

Here are some of my favorites:

Click any of the pictures above to enter the gallery and see captions.

Further details available (including links to patterns, where I used one) on my Ravelry projects 2015 tab. (You must be logged into Ravelry to view.)

I already have a good head start on 2016 with a bulky-gauge sweater on the needles. At 3.5 stitches per inch, it’s working up very quickly.


I’m using the Seamless Yoke – Adult sweater pattern from Ann Budd’s Knitter’s Handy Book of Top-Down Sweaters. The majority is knit in Cascade Yarns Eco Wool (Bovska undyed cream colorway), and the contrast color in the yoke is Targhee from Spunky Eclectic that I handspun (purchased at the NH Sheep & Wool Festival in May 2015 and spun the week after). At this point, most was done with one 200-gram skein of Eco Wool and 57 grams of the handspun. I just started the second skein of Eco Wool a few rows back, and I’m planning on using the rest of the handspun for a rolled reverse-stockinette edging on the cuffs, bottom hem, and neckline. Buttonbands will be done in Eco Wool in garter stitch. The whole sweater is garter stitch as well. Easy-peasy.

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(Forget about borrowed and blue, it’s not that sort of post.)

Sweater Sampler - Side A

Sweater Sampler - Side A

Well, my “something old” for today is the Sweater Sampler (Ravelry link there, login required) I made somewhere around 2004 (I’m guessing at the date a bit, based on the email receipts from when I bought The Sweater Workshop by Jacqueline Fee and the needles to make the sampler). I bought the book after my first two failed attempts at sweater-knitting (of which I am lacking photographic evidence, thank God). I was very hopeful when I bought the book, since its very cover promised I would be able to knit creative, seam-free sweaters on my own with any yarn (also implying to me that they would fit properly and not look like crap).

Side B

Side B

While the sweater sampler went well (it looked like the ones in the book, for the most part, and all the techniques worked), I still haven’t knit a sweater. Oh, I have yarn for a couple of sweaters (child- and adult-sized) and I have several books with sweater patterns in them. And I have sweater patterns queued and favorited on Ravelry. But I have not yet begun to actually knit a sweater since the two failed attempts and knitting the sweater sampler.

Afterthought Pocket

Afterthought Pocket

I know I can do it… I think I’m just a little skeered to start. Well, that and I have other stuff to do first. But it would be nice to have the two sweaters I already have yarn for done this winter.

As far as the gory details on the sweater sampler go, I used Caron Simply Soft (rose/pink) along with some burgundy and white worsted-weight acrylic (Wintuk or Sayelle, probably) I had leftover from college weaving projects. As far as needles go, I think I used size US 8 Susan Bates 16″ circular (Quicksilver) and DPNs (Silvalume). I have no idea how long it took me to make, since I wasn’t keeping track of that stuff at the time. But I think it was at least a couple months. I wasn’t knitting then like I am now.

So, ya wanna know what the “something new” is? I took a drop-spindle spinning class at Yarns R Us this past Thursday night! It was fun, although I’ll stop short of saying it went well. What I will say is that I definitely need a lot more practice! I will spare you the sight of seeing this little 8-yard hank of handspun yarn unfurled. It looks much better as a lump of wool wound upon itself.

Handspun Wool

Handspun Wool

There are spots where it actually looks decent. And then there are spots where it looks like total crap. But I have some fiber left from the class kit (at least enough for another 8-9 yards) and I will be practicing with it. Though I think it’s safe to say I won’t drop everything and suddenly be all absorbed in handspinning fiber. I enjoy knitting much more. However, this certainly makes me appreciate all the hard work and artistry that goes into a hank of handspun yarn (although most times that’s done on a spinning wheel — but still, it’s an art!).

After a whole 2+ hour class, I had 8 yards of badly-spun yarn. Spinning should be nice for an occasional change of pace from the knitting (not that I don’t have other stuff I really should be doing). Plus, it opens up a whole new world of shopping — for fiber (oooh, and pretty handmade drop-spindles)! Still, I won’t be going hog-wild and getting a sheep like my Aunt Faye Ann did 18-ish years ago after she learned to weave and make her own plant-based dyes and spin and process fiber… (now she’s moved on to needle-felting).

Other than that, I’m still working on the same three pairs of socks. I have at least one test-knitter for my Baby Fern – Rib Anklets (AKA “Anklets for Meeeee!”) and once that’s done I’ll get a pattern shop set up on Ravelry and offer the pattern for sale (my freebie patterns are already up there). The secret birthday present project is still almost finished (in fact, it’s really just one afternoon of working on it away from being finished — just need to find the time). And I have a couple more weaving projects on the horizon, one of which I need to get done before September 13 (a raffle prize).

So once again, I’d better get off the blasted computer and get to work on all this stuff (oh yeah, and laundry — clean underwear is a good thing to have).

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