Après Knit City Montreal

My goodness, Montreal was fun.

Over the Victoria Day long weekend (May 18-20, to be exact), I had a mini getaway with my Knitting BFF, Victoria. For three nights and three days, we were tourists who spent time and money in Montreal, the raison d’être for the trip being Knit City Montreal. This fibre event is organized by Knit Social who host two such events annually – one on the west coast in Vancouver and one more easterly, this year in Montreal.

After arriving late Thursday night, we spent Friday being tourists – take a look at that finished Magna Flora top! What I liked was that we visited places I didn’t go to when I first went to Montreal in 2019. We started the day at the Biodome and saw lots of cool animals being very animal-y. After lunch at a delicious Mexican restaurant, we visited the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts (Musée des beaux-arts de Montréal). On reflection, I think that might have been a highlight of the trip for me. I’m not especially an art gallery person, but there was just so much to see and experience at that gallery, and I didn’t know really what to expect, so I was very pleasantly surprised by the visit.

Dinner that night consisted of poutine, because it had to be, and was followed by a Ghost Walk through the old city. Super cheesy? Yes. An entertaining way to spend the evening? Also yes.

Saturday was Knit City Montreal, and while we didn’t plan on any workshops, we had plans for the marketplace. There were 68 vendors at the marketplace, so if I had to describe the scene in one word, it would have been ‘overwhelming.’ That said, it was overwhelming in a good way. I had a rough budget that I stuck to, more or less, and I’m really pleased with what I bought.

Now, that picture is my entire haul for the weekend, including yarn I bought on Sunday when we visited Biscotte’s storefront and Espace Tricot. From the marketplace, I bought the J’❤️ MTL bag, a skein of Merino Sock from Stix Yarn & Fibre, a collection of minis from Rose Hill Yarn, and then I bought five minis from five different vendors, wanting to get my hands on as many different companies as I (fiscally) could. The five vendors were Bar à Tricot, Les Tricoteuses du Quartier, Fireweed Fibre co, Entre Soeurs Et Laine, and GennaYarn.

I have a plan for the minis. Along with a full skein I bought from a LYS in Port Hope and a mini I bought on a trip to Kingston, I’m going to make Stephanie Lotven’s Around Every Corner Shawl. I think a pattern like this will be a lovely way to show off these minis and create a keepsake piece for the weekend.

As I mentioned, we went to two yarn shops on Sunday before we started the drive back to Ontario, Biscotte and Espace Tricot. At Biscotte, I snagged a skein of their Sirius yarn, a lovely tweedy teal, and a skein of Briggs and Little I bought for my travel afghan. I was able to visit Espace Tricot when I visited in 2019, but this was Victoria’s first visit, one she really enjoyed. It was there I bought another set of minis (who knew I was so mini inclined!) which I’ll keep aside, and if I can find a good MC to use with them, I’ll try to make a garment of some sort.

I was glad we went from Thursday to Sunday because the Monday was a holiday, so I had a day to recover before the return to normalcy.

Knit Social announced the 2024 show will be in Toronto which will be much easier for us to get to, but not nearly as much fun as a tourist weekend in a new city!

A New Knit City Goal

Later this month, I’m heading to Knit City Montreal with my Knitting BFF, Victoria. We’re both very excited for our long weekend getaway, and on top of attending Knit City, we have a few other touristy things planning, including poutine, bagels, and other yarn shops.

One motivation for getting So Faded finished was wanting it done in time for Knit City. Safe to say, I met that goal easily! That said, depending on the weather, it might not be the best knit garment to bring along. Granted, it’s been on the chilly side here in southern Ontario, but who knows what 10 days time will bring for Montreal. So, I’ve started another project hoping to finish before our great weekend away.

This is another one of my projects I organized earlier this year. I cast on Magna Flora (RAV LINK) by Alisa Hartzel with three skeins of Berroco Weekend I bought for a steal at a LYS. I began this project in mid-April, and it’s coming along quickly. The yoke features the lace detail, providing interest, and once I separated for the sleeves, I went ahead and got that step finished. Now, all yarn I have can be dedicated to the body, and I can either knit until I’m happy with the length or until I run out of yarn.

This sweater might be a better piece to pack for a May weekend as it’s short sleeved and cotton/acrylic, so a little more tolerable than a sweater made from wool blends.

So, that’s the new goal. Hopefully rounds and rounds of stockinette go fast enough to get this done by deadline!

Project Reflections – Boxy

Not long ago, I stumbled across the blog of Kelly at Knitigating Circumstances, and one frequent post highlight is her ‘Wearability Wednesday.’ Here, she takes a piece she’s made and, after time passed since finishing, she evaluates the ‘wearability’ of it. So often, you finish a piece and there’s the excitement that comes from that newly finished thing, that feeling of accomplishment, of happiness that it’s off the needles. I’ll do a ‘Finished Object’ post, filled with the newly finished excitement, and, inevitably, there will be some pieces that get worn and worn again and others that, well, languish at the bottom of the pile.

I hope Kelly won’t mind that I’ve used her series as inspiration (well, flat out copying) for my own projects reflections. Like Kelly does, every so often, I’ll look at a piece in my knitted wardrobe and reflect on it – do I wear it? How does it wear? How does it style? What yarn did I use? How does the yarn hold up after wear?

I’m starting this series with one of my favourite pieces. This is Worsted Boxy by Joji Locatelli. I made this sweater though 2018 and finished it in January 2019, and it’s made with Berroco’s now discontinued Weekend, a 75% Manufactured Fibers (Acrylic) and 25% Cotton blend.

I love this sweater. It’s easily one of my favourite pieces that I wear all the time. It’s a great weight and a very comfy sweater. Being made from the cotton/acrylic blend, it has a nice drape and washes like a dream. It’s a little more casual than some of my other knit sweaters, so if I wear it to work (where the unofficial dress code is business casual) it’s on a Monday or Friday when we can be more casual with our wardrobe.

It’s a perfect outer layer for the warm spring/cool autumn days, and I like that I can pair this sweater with a cowl, if I wanted.

Joji’s Boxy sweaters are well known and well loved by many, and it is understandable. My Worsted Boxy is a wonderful staple piece in my knitted wardrobe.

Finished Object: So Faded

I am honestly a little shocked I was able to finish this sweater in about six weeks time. Inspired by Andrea Mowry’s #DRKMarch2MayKAL23, and bolstered by the fact that I had organized my stash into ready-to-go project bags, I started the So Faded sweater at the beginning of March, and just after the Easter long weekend, it was finished.

There were four different skeins of sock yarn used in this sweater, and I have a quarter to half of each skein left. From top to bottom, the yarn is Skein or Shine Fingering, All Dyed Up! Fibres Fingering SW, North Star Yarn Co. Bellatrix, and Akara Yarns Merino Sock. I’m pretty pleased that all four are Canadian indie dyers, and they really work well together. I suppose that’s a bonus to being partial to a teal colour palette – you’re going to have a lot of yarn that will work together!

Now, please, do not take this statement as a complaint (I’m looking at you, weather gods), but it has been unseasonably hot this past week here in southern Ontario – I’m talking record breaking temperatures for mid-April. I have simply loved the bright, warm, sunny days, but they haven’t been ideal for wearing my new sweater. I’m sure the weather will return to seasonal, and I’ll hopefully be able to wear this sweater at least once before the fall!

Finished Object: Bright Axis

Where has March gone? It’s like I blinked, and the weeks have just slipped away from me! Earlier this month, I was able to finish my Bright Axis tee. Ripping back the black yarn to make the tee a little longer through the body was well worth the effort, as was my decision to change the contrast yarn. I did, indeed, get my hands on a set of TurtlePurl sock yarn, in their Trenchcoat colourway. This Burberry inspired yarn really suited this project, and I am so glad I went with this yarn for the sweater.

To recap, the pattern was Bright Axis by Stephanie Lotven, a pattern which appears in her book, Knit Happy with Self-Striping Yarn: Bright, Fun, and Colorful Sweaters and Accessories Made Easy.

Main colour is Cascade Heritage Sock, and contrast is the aforementioned Turtlepurl Yarns Striped Turtle Toes, colourway Trenchcoat.

Once I settled in and really dedicated time to knitting this project, it came together quickly. Rounds and rounds of mindless stockinette in the round later gave way to short row shaping and the sideways knitting of the contrast across the yoke. Simple, with enough interest by the end to keep you going.

I wore this statement tee to the Hamilton Fibre Forge and received a few kind comments about it, including a few people who were able to clock the Turtlepurl yarn. Safe to say I’m happy with this finished sweater.