Marvelous and Marled

Oh, hi. I have a new yarn obsession. It’s black and white marled yarn. That’s it. It’s not new, it’s not revolutionary. It’s black and white marled yarn. And I cannot get enough.

Months ago, I went in on an online order with my friend Victoria (gotta save on those shipping costs where we can, amirite), and we both ordered marled sock yarn from Leo and Roxy. Their social media posts worked like a charm after posting a picture of a baby set knit with their marled yarn. Well done, strategic social media posting. My brother and sister-in-law are expecting, and I have a little nibling on the way – I have been knitting WAY to much for this little baby already, and I couldn’t resist making a set with that Leo and Roxy yarn. SIL has added lots of buffalo print items to their registry, so making a work-sock inspired set with the marled yarn would complement what she’s asked for nicely.

And now I cannot stop. I ADORE how this is working up. I have no idea what magic this marling is, but I have fallen for it hook, line, and sinker. I mean…

The hat is Barley Light from Tin Can Knits (omitting the garter section), and the mitts, aptly, is Baby Mittens by Malin Nilsson. As an aside, 27″ icords are simply the worst…

Very shortly, I’ll be casting on a Flax Light sweater, and, fingers crossed, I’ll have enough yarn left over for a pair of baby socks as well.

Meanwhile, as if I didn’t have enough projects on the go already, I started a pair of heavy duty socks for my BFF, also out of some marled yarn. A few months back, she passed along two skeins of Briggs and Little: one marled and one white. I thought the best way to return it to her was knit them into something cozy. Warm, perhaps a little scratchy, and cozy. Her family doesn’t live too far from the Briggs and Little mill in New Brunswick, so I have a sneaky suspicion that this yarn came from the mill itself. I cannot keep a secret, so I told her I was making her something, but I can keep enough of a secret NOT to show any pictures of the socks in progress.

Even though I’m knitting all the baby things and working on the coziest socks, all I can think of is wanting a sweater for myself made from marled yarn. I must remind myself that a) I have enough sweaters on the go already, and b) I don’t need anymore yarn. But a girl can dream, right? It’s not a ‘no,’ it’s just a ‘not right yet.’

Finished Object Friday: Little Secret Crop

Last week, I finished the Little Secret Crop (RAV LINK) by Jessie Maed Designs. Just a refresher – I made it with DK weight cotton yarn I frogged from a shawl I never wore. It was an addictive knit, with the 3×3 ribbing being perfect for webinar or virtual meeting knitting. It felt like it flew off my needles.

I will note, I made the large size and noticed two minor errors with this pattern. Being a confident knitter, it didn’t throw me at all, but I feel like a lot of new knitters make patterns by Jessie Mae, so I was clear in my Rav notes, and I’ll be clear here, about what the mistakes are. For size Large, when decreasing for the front, rows 3 & 4, it says to repeat 3 MORE times, but I think, in order to get the required number of stitches, it should be 3 times TOTAL. At least, I’m hoping I mathed correctly on that… Also, for the right strap set up, work as follows: sl1pwyif, K1, sl1pwyif, K1, sl1pwyif. Turn. That way, your stitches are correct for the start of the right strap.

For real though, this is now the third pattern I’ve made by her, and all three of these garments are so very flattering and comfortable.

Happy summer knitting!

Another trip to the Sweater Frog Pond

I have a gift, an unfortunate gift, but a gift nonetheless. What is this gift, you might ask? I am able to consistently underestimate how much yarn is needed and get foiled by yardage. It’s happened again.

Last summer, I started a sweater, the Vatsland Jumper (RAV LINK) by Ella Gordon. I had a bunch of super woolly yarn in my stash and a few colours that seemed to work well together for the bottom hem lace. The pattern gave weight estimates for the Main Colour and, like the fool I was, I used that estimate to gauge whether I had enough. Did I pay any attention at all to meterage? No. I am, as I said, a fool.

I made good progress with the sweater, getting to the point where I divide for the sleeves, and that’s when I really started doubting. I checked the pattern and yes, I would be short. About 300 metres short. I know, I know. I’m a fool.

Unfortunately, the brown I was using as the MC was from a small (and I mean small) local mill, having purchased the two skeins in my stash a few years ago at a craft fair. I checked their website and no brown yarn was available. Of course not.

So, I masked up and ventured to a LYS where I hoped they would have Briggs and Little that would match. I was able to buy a heathered brown which works wonderfully with the colours in the lacework. Also, I’m blending the skeins, changing yarns every row, and it’s hard to tell the difference, really, between the two. They are blending beautifully. I bought enough brown to make the sweater, but I’m leaving the skeins unwound until I need them, and anything unused, I’ll return to the store. The point of this sweater was to use up some yarn that’s been lamenting in my stash. I really shouldn’t add MORE if it goes unused!

The yarn on the left is the original brown, and the yarn on the right, the heathered yarn, is the Briggs and Little I bought. As you can see, I have about an inch re-knit, and it is really blending well. You can see the heathering, but it’s simply adding some subtle colour to the sweater.

The question remains – will I ever learn and start paying better attention to meterage? Probably not…

The coziest winter yet

Please note – when pattern names are linked with quote marks around them, they are linked to Ravelry site pages. If there are no quote marks, they are links to previous blog posts or elsewhere on the internet.

I know I’ve written about this before, but I’m definitely on a sweater kick. I mean, let’s look at the evidence.

At the start of the pandemic in mid/late March, I started Elkko (links directly to Knitty), a sweater I powered through in about two weeks.

And since then, I’ve finished A Mount Pleasant crop, two V-Neck Magpie shirts, a Summer Secret Top, not to mention a sweater for my brother’s dog. Oh, and on my needles are three more sweaters, all for me.

I know all this sweater knitting is coming from the sheer amount of OTHER objects I have in my wardrobe. My shawls and cowls are plentiful, and goodness knows my sock drawer is overflowing.

The sweaters on-the-go are “Very V Neck Raglan” by Jessie Maed Designs, “Vatsland Jumper” by Ella Gordon, and “Sock Arms” by Stephanie Lotven. Sock Arms got a lot of attention during work video meetings. It had rounds and rounds of stockinette in fingering weight yarn, and my nervous energy needed to be funneled somewhere during those meetings, so knitting this sweater was ideal. Over the last week or so, I was able to give it some undivided attention, and I finished the body and got the first sleeve started.

As the name implies, the highlight of this sweater is the contrasting sleeves, an excellent way to showcase self striping or self patterning yarn on your arms as opposed to on your feet.

As soon as the self stripes were starting to take form, I texted this picture to a friend:

I am so pleased with how this sweater is shaping up!

Sock Stories – August 2020

Please note – when pattern names are linked with quote marks around them, they are linked to Ravelry site pages. If there are no quote marks, they are links to previous blog posts or elsewhere on the internet.

Socks! I’ve actually been knitting socks! So, in honour of that, let’s share some sock pictures, shall we!

This is the pair of “Let It Shine Socks” I made for my sister. I loved the rainbow of the yarn, which is a Canadian dyer named Lake Knit Yarns. The busy, beautiful yarn needed a simple pattern to let the yarn shine, so the Let It Shine pattern was aptly named and well suited for this yarn.

Also making progress this month was Sock 1 of my “Cozy Autumn Socks.” I was a little shocked when I saw on my Ravelry project page that I started this pair in January. January! My goodness, it feels like we’ve lived a thousand lifetimes since January, and this poor sock has limped along with only the odd row or two being worked. Here’s a secret – apparently, if you take the time and give some undivided attention to a pattern, you can actually make progress and get the thing done. Share this secret widely.

I also cranked out a pair of Vanilla socks for my mum using some Regia. I have a soft spot for self patterning yarn. Very little effort, and a fun pair of socks is the payoff.

Did I mention that I’ve been making socks? So, because two pairs were completed, I started another pair of vanilla, again using a local Canadian Dyer, this time The Yarn Therapist. She had a trunk show at a LYS before the pandemic, and a friend and I shopped. I bought a sock set, the main yarn being self striping. The colourway is called RGB (after Ruth Bader Ginsburg), but I’ve come to think of them as my Hufflepuff-ish socks.

So yeah, for someone who had very little sock mojo a few months ago, the inspiration has returned. It’s very likely the return is related to the fact that vanilla socks are simple to knit on the back deck while reading… yeah, there’s probably a lot of correlation there.

Happy knitting! It’ll be sock weather again before we know it!