Thursday, April 7, 2016

(Early) Spring: Knitting Color & Knitting Progress

My newest knitting yarn is this.

Three skeins of Silken Straw by Alchemy Yarns of Transformation.  It is a 100% silk ribbon yarn in a colorway called Spider Orchid.  (I cannot really explain why -- but, to me, the variegated color is all about early spring -- like the pine trees through the window in the photo, or the shadows under the trees where there will soon be flowers -- )

I want to make a spring/summer top with it.  I am going to work hard to make it a design of my own.  Maybe you cannot tell from the photo, but it is a special yarn... (not at all inexpensive), unique in color, and well, it is a "yarn of transformation".

From the Alchemy website:
"The first touch. The initial glimpse of Alchemy Yarns of Transformation tells you we are passionate about everything we do. Pleasing the senses. Soothing the soul -- we strive for nothing less than the transformative moment in art and life." 

I hope that I can do justice to all of that.

In the meantime, I have been knitting away on my Hart (designed by Julie Hoover) and I am almost finished with the first I have a good start on the second sleeve.  (Does it really take me longer to finish editing a blog post than it does to knit a sleeve?)

The back of my Hart blocked out to an appropriate width but is a bit longer than I expected (I knit it an inch and a half shorter than the pattern). The Shibui Knits Pebble (silk, merino and cashmere) is lovely and light, so I am hoping I will like it in what will be a rather long cardigan for me.

The fronts are ready to come off the blocking board.  I used a technique I call "piggyback blocking", described in a previous blog post Helene Update: Piggyback Blocking.

The right front of Hart was laid over the left front.  This saves time in measuring the second front.  You only have to check measurements on the first piece.  After it dries, spread the second (symmetrical) piece on top to match the shape of the piece below and re-pin all of the edges.  I expect to block the two sleeves in a similar fashion.

This paragraph is for critical knitters only!  Please feel free to skip it if you are not a (critical) knitter.
I'll be the first to admit that my side seam edges are not very straight, but I know that they will be fine once I seam them.  The front edges have a narrow icord in which I wove a blocking wire for each piece.  I chose not use wires on the side seam edges.  (With the waist shaping, it would take three of my not very flexible wires per piece.)  I also chose not to work the selvedge stitch as in the pattern.  I did try it for the first couple inches of the back.  The slip stitch selvedge was straighter, but it also caused a looseness in the nearby stitches that would not be at all helpful when working the actual seams.   This, my friends, is truly a matter of the personal preference of the knitter.

I hope that you are enjoying your own early spring (with or without knitting)!  


  1. I love the colors of your Silken Straw and am sure that your project will be lovely! And yes,mi can believe that it takes longer to edit a blog post than to knit a sleeve!

    1. I do like to write blog posts, but sometimes I like to knit even more!

  2. I love the silk ribbon yarn. I can't wait to see what you come up with.
    Your Hart sweater is beautiful. I love the lace on the back and the length. Does it have pockets, too?

    1. No pockets on the pattern. But it has crossed my mind that the only other cardigan I own that is anywhere equal in length (a commercially made one that I enjoy wearing) does have pockets. Afterthought pockets? Just maybe :-)