Yes, I know it’s no longer September. An unexpected search for a new tech editor slowed this pattern down some, but the fact is the sweater still looks like a September thunderstorm, regardless of when you wear it. And I do wear it, often. September Storms is a study in contrasts – lightweight but warm, elegant but casual, dark but bold.
Like the skies in the heart of hurricane season, it’s an utter chameleon, changing moods at the drop of a hat. The variegated Unisono in the blue stripes of this raglan echoes the variety of blues you’ll see in the sky in early fall. The sharp change to black with each stripe reminds me of the sudden appearance of a thunderstorm, and the just as rapid return to blue also holds true to nature.
Knit in fingering weight wool, this effortless top-down sweater is just a little warm, for days that are growing just a little cool. Its boldly colored simplicity also makes it functional for a day in park, but still sophisticated enough for a night on the town. The broad stripes at the shoulder and hip contrast intriguingly with narrow stripes at the waist. This both narrows the appearance of your own waist, and creates an impressive effect in what is otherwise a very easy stockinette pullover.
Interested yet? Sales-pitch aside, I really do wear this sweater more than almost any other in my wardrobe. I’m sure you’ll love September Storms as much as I do; go check it out!
While I do want to keep using up stash as much as possible, the fiber diet is well and thoroughly over. Today a little box full of joy arrived in the mail. Inside it was this:
A luscious bundle of Knit Picks Gloss Fingering in Kenai, which will become a Flutter (Amy Herzog) eventually. Also in the box was this:
Fluffy, new-to-me Knit Picks Aloft in Silver which will shortly become a Cascade Kid Seta Cardigan (Marelie Hurter), a bit ironically. The Flutter is a random indulgence I have no need for but have been craving ever since I tried it on at one of the designer’s workshops, but the cardigan is another step in the quest to not freeze at work or swelter when I step out. The Aloft is pretty close to the color it appeared on my monitor, but the Gloss is much darker and greener. Luckily, the reason I chose to buy Kenai instead of the gorgeous purple or red I was also eyeing up is because I knew even if it didn’t match my monitor, it was probably still going to be a color I could pull off. Red and purple can be more dodgy with my coloring.
The other big, biiiig blow to the fiber budget is one I’ve been planning for a while, and which I feel a bit less guilty about because my parents’ Christmas gift to me helped make it happen.
A spinning wheel! It is a Kromski Fantasia and in a bizarre coincidence matches the floors in my house almost perfectly. I took it for a little test-drive in my LYS and it seems perfectly wonderful (and SO much faster than any of my spindles) but unfortunately it was just a little, awkward test drive because of this:
Much as I’ve tried to get creative and change my positioning/tensioning temporarily, it is just not practical for me to spin with only one functional thumb. Luckily I should be down to just a band-aid on the damaged thumb in a few more days, and I might be able to manage some drafting then. Spinning Tuesday will probably not happen this week though. Any advice for when I can finally play with my new darling? Especially those of you who started on a spindle and switched to wheels, what do you wish you’d known then?
Well, all our stuff is officially out of the apartment, and the keys are turned over and out of our possession. I don’t even begin to know where exactly all our stuff is, but presumably it’s around here somewhere! One thing I have managed to find is my sweater collection though.
I went a little crazy and arranged them both by weight (well, heavy vs. light) and color. We’ll see how long that lasts. It does really make it obvious just how many green sweaters I have though. Time to start working on some other colors there.
While we were loading up the truck my sister asked me to make her a steering wheel cover for her birthday (in late August) and hoped that it wasn’t too late to ask. Steering wheels are not sweaters; a month is plenty of time! Remember that Pima Silk I had, where I couldn’t decide what to make, but wanted something where it would be touched a lot? Well, guess whose favorite color is purple? It’s a bit paler than she normally wears, but she’ll like it, I think. AND the nice cool cotton-silk blend will feel awesome under her hands sitting in traffic in the hot sun! Now to figure out where my needles are packed…
This is not related to a current project, but it seemed like a pretty clear indication of the importance of dye lot, so I thought I’d share. The background piece is the Broken Rib Tank I made back in 2009, and the piece on top is an “Ugh” project I recently ripped out and we will not speak of. Both are the exact same brand and line of commercially available yarn – same weight, same fiber percentages, same colorway, everything. The only difference is dye lots 4 years apart. This is a prime example of why you should ALWAYS buy the whole project’s worth of yarn at once!
I’m working out some major changes to the shawl that leave me unable to really work on it at the moment, so I’ve been doing some extra spinning instead. I also started the sample for a new pattern, but I’m not ready to share that one yet. So, spinning:
Pay no attention to my redneck lazy kate!
I’m managing to get 2 distinct types of singles, in spite of them coming from the same top. You can see the “bobbin” on the left is much darker than the one on the right. And yes, you can also see the cat supervising my spinning. He is a very diligent supervisor.
Here’s a closer look at the colors.
I’ve been plying dark to light, and in the strand it looks very striking, but the effect is actually much more subtle in the skein.
Here it is in the strand.
Here it is all together on the spindle.
I think my favorite part is the absolute glow it gets from the silk content. Silk spins like a dream too, apparently. I think I can probably get one more skein out of the current batch. By then, hopefully, we’ll be moved and I’ll finally have space for a wheel! Getting really excited!
The yarn for my new shawl design arrived! Since I’ve talked so much about it already, I’m going to experiment with sharing the whole design process with you guys. It’ll be self-published if it turns out well, so there’s nothing forcing me to secrecy. Might as well try something different!
The Gloss is not noticeably shiny in the skein; definitely more grey than silver. It does have a nice…I dunno, liveliness… to it that is clearly the result of the silk though. It also feels every bit as squishy and delicious as the heavier weight version. I can’t wait to start swatching with it. The next big decision is beads.
Purple to match the main wedding color? Yellow to make the other yellow accents (like our flowers) pop? Clear to really bling out the silver and make it just plain sparkle? I’m going to swatch with each color to see what I like best, but I’d love to hear your thoughts too!
I’m still trying to knock out a persistent spring cold, so I’m going to keep this short and sweet before I fall asleep again. Thanks to your lovely poll votes (and the bride’s input, of course) I finally decided on a yarn for the shawl I’m going to make. I went with Gloss Lace in Sterling, a neutral grey color. I’ve worked with the Aran version of this yarn before,
Pole in Gloss HW
and it feels incredible, so I’m looking forward to working with its lace cousin. The yarn also has a nice subtle sheen, thanks to the 30% silk. I’m hoping that’ll contribute to making the shawl read more as “silver” and less as “grey”. Now to choose beads!
I am not participating in this year’s Knit/Crochet Blog Week, but reading all my friends’ posts has lead me to realize a few things about myself:
1. My favorite overall crafting tool is boring – it’s my spreadsheet program. It really does save me SO much time when designing though. Also, does yarn count as a tool? Because then I’m significantly less boring.
I mean seriously. Yum.
2. I am probably going to break down and by a spinning wheel soon. Thanks a lot, All She Wants to Do is Knit.
3. My stash listing on Rav is seriously out of date.
4. I knit a whole lot of different colors, but almost all of the garments I knit are either blue or green.
5. My projects list is shockingly lacking in colorwork.
Last summer I got a new camera, and posted about how much better it is than my old camera. I’ve slowly been using it to take improved, updated photos of some of my patterns, while I also update the format of my old patterns to be more consistent. It has been very slow going because I’m only doing it in my very limited spare time between current designs and the day job. I channeled by typical springtime craving for all things green, and have completed my update of Flourishing Fields!
Flourishing Fields, by Christina Loman
If you are a previous buyer, you’ve received an updated copy already, free of charge, via Ravelry or an email sent by Ravelry. Whether you are a previous buyer or not, know that the content of this pattern has not changed. These are still fairly simple cuff-down socks with the exact same cables as before. All that has changed is the format, plus a few new photos. Enjoy!
I have a mission for my readers (and myself). My best friend is getting married in September, and since we will likely be outside for at least part of her evening reception, I’d like to make myself a nice, lacy shawl. The catch is it needs to go with my bridesmaid dress. I already have the perfect beads to use as an accent, but I think I want the actual yarn to be as close to the color of the dress as possible. We’re wearing David’s Bridal’s Regency color, and satin, if anyone’s ever seen it in person before. For anyone who hasn’t, it’s roughly royal purple. There are lots of royal purple yarns out there, but I don’t even begin to know what yarn is closest in color, except that it’s none of the ones at my LYS. I’m not sure I’m quite confident enough in my dyeing abilities to make that shade of purple myself. Anyone have any experience here?