American Wool Series

Wednesday, August 22, 2012


Last week I felt a little bored with my knitting project so I went in search of something knitting related to do that wasn't knitting. There is a stack of sweaters sitting in my room that have problems. Rather, I have problems with my knitting execution in choosing either size or length or yarn or what have you. Not being in the mood to unpick stitches and reknit sections of sleeves or button bands I pulled a sweater out of the stack and got to frogging. This yummy yarn came from the Hollyhock sweater that I knit at the beginning of last year. All of the issues that I had with this particular sweater came from my own modifications. The yarn, Columbia by Imperial Stock Ranch, is a lovely lovely thing to work with and blooms amazingly when washed and unfortunately it was just a plain old bad choice for this sweater. This yarn definitely tends toward the heavier side of worsted, if not Aran, and when knit up at the close-to-correct gauge for Hollyhock it became armor-like. Due to my choice of yarn I had to modify the stitch count and yoke depth and neither worked out quite right. I prefer a fitted yoke and sleeve with little to no extra fabric at the underarm and this sweater just, well, it was not flattering. I think I wore it once or twice and then shoved it toward the back of my closet as the wearability issues forced me to acknowledge my knitting fail. I'm excited to knit it again in something that works with the yarn rather than against it.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

On & Off

Lately it feels like no matter how much time I put into projects they just aren't getting done. Every knitting, sewing, or home project feels prematurely doomed to failure. I could blame the weather but I think I'm just....bleh. Part of this feeling stems from running out of both yarns on my Westknits Mystery Shawl very close to the end of the project and part of it is my inability to focus brought on by stress. I've managed to get something off and something on the needles in the past few weeks.

Yarn: Brown Paper Packages Silk & Ivory (emerald, margarita, honeydew)
Needles: US #2 & US #3
Mods: I cast on 48 stitches so that the mitts are snug around my palm and arm. I also worked these from the tips to the wrist so I could use all of my yardage (the yarn comes in 28.8 yard hanks) and knit the thumb in one go instead of going back and picking up stitches.
I also cast on a plain stockinette sock in my self-striping Zombie Apocalypse yarn from Out of Step Dyeworks. This one practically knit itself and I've got the second sock cast on and ready to knit tonight.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Zombies + Yarn

 I've been feeling a bit stressed out lately and I'm not quite sure why. Passing the one year anniversary at my temp (yeah, right) job and getting my ducks in a row for my last quarter of school seems to have drained some of my energy. Guess what that means? Yep. Yarn. This isn't just any yarn folks, this is zombie yarn.

I found this etsy shop, Out of Step Dyeworks, via Erin of the Anatomy of Knitting videocast and scooted over there to poke around. Poke around means buying two skeins because I just couldn't help myself. Both skeins are an MCN (merino/cashmere/nylon) blend and enough for a pair of socks. That crazy bright one up top is called Atomic Zombie and it's BLACKLIGHT REACTIVE! I'm excited to knit up some socks and track down someone with a blacklight so I can take creepy zombie sock photos. 

 Below is a skein of self-striping sock yarn with the lovely name of Zombie Apocalypse Stripe, it will make 8 row stripes of red followed by 8 row stripes of red-flecked gray/green.

 Both yarns dovetail nicely with my reading of late which is Mira Grant's Newsflesh trilogy. I finished the first book last night and requested the second from my local library - hopefully I'll get that before school starts again and I'm stuck doing assigned reading. In the meantime I'll be rewatching some Romero films and knitting away on my new yarn.