Back from a Detour

If there’s such a thing as a Contemplation-in-Progress project, then that’s what I’m working on. And sporadically at that. I actually haven’t knit or done any kind of yarn related work at all for more than 2 weeks now. I’ve been doing some programming for myself, and it was going so great that I didn’t feel the need to work on my other crafts. πŸ™‚ And now that my programming work is done, and I’ve created a few “great things” πŸ˜‰ , the crafty calling is back.

And now I’m picking up from my last post, where I signed off wondering what I should make next. I’ve taken a tiny step forward in the contemplation process – I’m making a poncho. (I think.) I still haven’t found a project yet, though, so I hope I figure it out soon.

It’s funny how my pastimey detour affected my book devouring too – I usually listen to books or podcasts while I work on crafty stuff, but since I can’t really concentrate on a book while I program, last month was the least reading that I did this year! But on the plus side, whatever little I read, I ended up reading with my eyes, not ears – and I’m glad my reading speed hasn’t reduced much.

Advertisements

Puck’s Tunic Inspired Shawl

Looks like I managed productive bursts of knitting towards the end of my current project, and completed it as a surprise move! I’m as surprised as you are – I certainly expected this post to be an I’m-almost-there one.

Puck's Tunic-Inspired Shawl | Anita

This shawl is inspired by Puck’s Tunic from Susanna IC. I knit the shawl with sections of lace pattern from the tunic interspersed with varying-width sections of stockinette stitch, and 3-row / 3-column seed stitch edges.

The shawl is for my sister, who wanted a long and wide rectangle, and I feel like I went overboard since it appears like a mini-blanket to me. πŸ˜‰ But my sister is happy with this size, as are my parents who think that it “covers well” (I wonder what that says about my previous shawls… πŸ˜› ) so I think I’ll conclude that the project is a resounding success!

Puck's Tunic-Inspired Shawl | Anita

My only complaint is that blocking hasn’t fixed the curling of the edges much. I wonder if that would’ve been remedied by knitting a smaller shawl and stretching it like crazy while blocking.

I have an entire skein of yarn (and then some) left from this project, adding to my leftovers-woes. But since this project’s leftovers are substantial, maybe I can knit a hat from them.


Next…

I’ll go with a crochet project next. I own this particular top that had a lace yoke. The lace yoke was destroyed, and I’ve only worn the top once. πŸ˜₯ I’ve been thinking of making a crocheted lace yoke for it since forever, and have been looking for crochet patterns since I’m not very good at designing crochet lace. I have a few candidates lined up now, and hope by my next post, I’ll have picked one!

Puck’s Tunic Inspired Shawl – WIP

My current project, a shawl for my sister, is inspired by a tunic. She really liked the pattern when we browsed through magazines for potential candidates, and I just have to multiply the pattern by N to make a shawl from a tunic, right? πŸ™‚

Puck’s Tunic is designed by Susanna IC. (Remember my Oshara Shawl from the only MKAL I’ve attempted so far? That’s her, too.) We ran into this project in the Summer 2017 issue of Interweave Knits. While the Oshara Shawl made liberal use of slip stitches for its zigzag patterning, this shawl uses some neat lacework for a zigzag pattern. I’ve inserted patterned columns at various points in the shawl, with stockinette stitch columns separating them.

Puck's Tunic inspired Shawl

Like always, as I love seeing the pattern form, I can’t wait to block the project, even if I’m not even close to done. πŸ™‚ This is one pattern that I haven’t gotten the hang of even after completing almost 5 repeats, and don’t think I ever will. I find this intriguing – it’s easy to see the pattern from the previous row, and it’s evident how the current row should go, but somehow, I can’t figure out the stitches that would make it happen. Maybe it’s some sort of mental block. Does this happen to you too?

I also find it interesting that I want to knit more shawls than sweaters now, and knit more lace patterns than cables. If I’d asked the me from one year ago if I’d ever want to knit lace shawls one after the other, the answer would have been an aghast “No!” Times do change, don’t they? πŸ™‚

Kashmiri Shawl

My Kashmiri Shawl is now done! The shawl is a pattern from Lana Jois, to which I’ve made very minimal modifications to better suit the yarn and my preferences.

 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Ever spent ages trying (and failing) to capture in pictures just how lovely you find your project? I keep thinking the pictures just don’t do justice to the shawl. My poor sister spent quite some time modeling for me. πŸ™‚

The shawl is exactly as long and wide as I’d wanted it. My yarn turned out more than sufficient, even when I’d thought earlier that it would get mostly used up, and I’d underestimated the row gauge then. I kept weighing the used-up and remaining yarn at various points in the project to ensure that I won’t fall short. I have a little ball of it left now, and it joins the growing pile of scrap yarn that I don’t know what to do with.

I think this will be a shared shawl, since my mom and sis like it too. It provides enough warmth on a cool day in temperate climate, or, of course, in an office with the blasted air conditioning on. (Guess I’ll wear it to work next week, then.)

Kashmiri Shawl - blocking

I’m always thrilled with how blocking provides a neater finish to a project, especially a lace project when the eyelets and the pattern open up, and the stitches settle better. This project was no exception, and even the wonky left decreases that always catch my eye seem to have evened out a bit now.

I’ll probably be knitting more shawls than sweaters for the time being, since the yarn that we ordered for my sister’s shawl arrived just when I was about to finish the current project – talk about timing! For the new project, I’ll take some elements from a pattern for a tunic. I’ve just started on a swatch, and I’ll probably have more to talk about the project only in my next post.

Meanwhile, check out the lovely color of the new yarn, and tell me about your projects!

New yarn!

This is a greenish-blue yarn, and I swear it looked green last night!

WIP – Kashmiri Shawl

My Kashmiri Shawl is coming along well. I knit a couple more repeats of the first pattern than I’d originally planned – my row gauge had turned out to be a bit off – and now I’ve made about half a repeat of the second pattern.

I’ve not figured out the new pattern yet, and I find that I double-check my stitches a lot, and look up the pattern every RS row. I hope I get used to it soon, and knit without referring to the chart, because it’s no fun pausing the book that I listen to while I try to understand the current row – too many interruptions. πŸ˜‰

Kashmiri Shawl - WIP

I know I have miles to go before I’m done, but I just can’t wait to block this shawl! The yarn isn’t a stretchy one so the difference won’t be drastic, but I think there will still be some difference.

So that’s my short update. Since I have other projects to work on in the weekend, I won’t be able to knit much, so today is as good a time as any to write about the project. πŸ™‚ Hope your projects are keeping you busy and entertained!

A New Project – Kashmiri Shawl

It’s time to fulfill my wish of knitting a lace shawl after the (un)fashionably delayed completion of my Amherst Sweater knit! Since my sister and I have still not zeroed in on a project for her, I started on a shawl for me (or for Mom if she likes it when I’m done.) I’m now working on the Kashmiri Shawl by Lana Jois, which I discovered in the Knitting Traditions, Fall 2017 magazine. It doesn’t really resemble actual Kashmiri shawls that I’ve seen, but it ticks the lace boxes, which is all that matters to me. And also, whats-in-a-name, and all that. πŸ™‚

I’m using a denim-based yarn that I’ve already used in earlier projects and have frogged a couple of times now, since I didn’t really feel the magic of the yarn in those projects. But this project feels like it’s the one for the yarn. I like the way it works with the lace, and of course, the way it looks and feels so far.

Kashmiri Shawl - WIP

The project starts with a provisional cast on, and it’ll be knit on one side and then on the other. For possibly the first time in my knitting life, my gauge matches the recommended gauge of the pattern, so I didn’t have to recalculate a whole lot of stuff. But obviously, it’s not a project if I don’t make some changes to it πŸ˜‰ so I reduced the length of the shawl by omitting a repeat or two, and I changed the stockinette stitch to a seed stitch since it hides the inflexibility of this yarn better. (Stockinette stitches just don’t settle properly with this one.)

I’ve mostly gotten the hang of the diamond pattern – I have to pause only slightly at the beginning of every RS row to figure out the pattern for that row. πŸ™‚ This is maybe the second time ever that I’m trying out combination knitting, which helps with this project since there are many LLDs in it – they’re a bit easier with combination knitting. Can’t say they’re any neater, though. LLDs are my pet knitting peeve since I’ve not been able to make them look neat despite the things I’ve tried…

Anyway, I’m hoping this shawl makes a handy accessory to wear at work. How are your plans for your projects and your progress in them?

Amherst Cardigan

I’ve finished knitting the Amherst Cardigan! Emphasis on the word ‘knitting’, since the actual finishing – the blocking – still remains to be done. I’ll get to that after about six months, since that’s probably when I’ll finally use the sweater. The ends are woven in, thankfully, since I weave in ends as I go, so I won’t have to worry about those pesky things when I block.

Amherst Cardigan

The button bands are also i-cords, since I didn’t have yarn left for ribbing. I hope they show after blocking. (And I wish stockinette didn’t curl…)

Phew, this sweater took me a long time – three months! The result looks underwhelming and does not appear to justify the time taken, but I think because I didn’t actually get much knitting time in the three months, it just about accounts for it. Still, it was pretty long, and all I want now is to knit some lace shawls. πŸ™‚

Other than the time taken, I don’t have any qualms about the project – I now have a sweater that’s taught me brioche basics, and is still wearable during the winters here since it’s not all squishy brioche stitch. I got to work with brioche stitch with one color, both flat (the hip border) and in the round (the cuffs), and with two colors (the yoke, of course.) Then there was the brioche decrease as well (the Raglan decreases.) Though I’ve still not mastered the stitch, I’ve learned how to fix mistakes in my knitting. And that’s a sign that I might actually have gotten to know the stitch a bit better now. Brioche-learning goal mostly accomplished! πŸ˜€

Amherst Cardigan - Yoke

I’d like to add a loop-and-button setting, at least at the top. I’ll probably get to that when I block the sweater. (And my short row technique definitely needs an upgrade. Can you see the bumpy distortions in the stockinette stitch row near where the raglans end in the picture?)

What next?

This month might just see some excitement of looking for a new knitting / crochet project (or designing one.) My sis and I would like to decide on a project for her – probably a shawl, but I’m wondering if I should also start a shawl for myself (potentially for my mom if she ends up liking it) as an alternative project. Ahem, yes, big plans, considering I’m short on crafty time. πŸ˜€ Since I don’t want to purchase new yarn for myself, I’ll need to take stock of my current stash and decide what to make…

I’ve not been blog hopping much last month; I hope this gets fixed soon. Meanwhile, I’d love to know what you’ve been up to!