A small disclaimer to start: Self portraits are not my forte. My photographer/husband is headed to China tomorrow and hasn’t packed, so I made a feeble attempt at photographing myself in the backyard so he wouldn’t have to do it when he gets home from work.
Now that that’s out of the way, let’s bring on the handknits!
Pattern: Sarai by Vanessa Smith
Yarn: String Theory Caper Sock Yarn in colorway Tavikki, purchased from the lovely Purl Diva
Modifications: Not too many, I swear! First of all, I find that Caper Sock yarn is closer to a sport-weight than a true fingering-weight yarn, so that shawl turned out slightly larger than the pattern measurements. The pattern called for a bit more yarn than I had, so I was well aware I’d probably have to cut a few rows out towards the end. I think I ended up cutting out about 4 rows at the end, but the size is actually perfect. The pattern was well-written and gave 3 options for edging, which I thought was a nice touch.
This was my second time knitting a shawl with Caper Sock (a merino/cashmere/nylon blend), and it knits up so beautifully and is amazingly soft right out of the skein. And, it only gets softer after washing. It has beautiful drape knit up at a looser gauge, but handles the lace pattern really well.
Next up: A hat! Very appropriate for this spring time weather, no? You’re right…not really, but I have a small obsession wtih handknit hats. I decided to tackle fair isle knitting again after learning almost a year ago. Last summer I took a Stranded Colorwork class with the very talented Jared Flood. I’ve been reluctant to do another fair isle project since the first one took so long, but I knit up this hat in a day and the fair isle went much better this time!
Pattern: Meritursas by Kate Gagnon Osborn
Yarn: The Fibre Company Canopy Worsted in Quetzal and Wild Ginger
Baby Alpaca, Merino, Viscose Bamboo (50/30/20)
Modifications: I knit the ribbed brim on size 4 needles instead of size 5 needles. I’ve found that the brims of my hats quickly stretch out (especially the beret styles), and the high alpaca content was only going to make the brim more stretchy. I blocked the hat over a 10″ dinner plate as the pattern suggested, but found that it was much too large. I tossed the hat in the dryer when it was almost dry and it shrunk back up to the perfect size (about 8.5-9″ across when blocking).
This was my first time working with any yarn from The Fibre Comany, and it certainly won’t be the last. And not just because my mom brought me enough to make 6 hats when we met up in Vegas! I’m such a sucker for alpaca fibers, and the Canopy was a great blend. The bamboo gives it a nice sheen, and the alpaca and merino make it amazingly soft.
And just for good measure, how about a picture of the pup: