November knits

It’s November! I can’t believe how quickly time has flown since we arrived here in Charleston, and it’s so nice to be past the horrible heat and into the cool fall weather. In addition to wearing layers and woollies, the cool makes me feel like spinning and knitting all day long, which is when I am happiest.

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In addition to my dad’s sweater, which is coming along (Although now that the sleeves are longer and the chest and shoulders are done, I’m getting concerned that the torso isn’t quite long enough- I think I may come back to it and add a few inches once the rest is done. That kind of issue won’t just block out…), I’ve been wanting to knit myself some handspun goodies.

My friend Sarah, who has been kicking her knitting into high gear in the few months, was very into the idea of knitting a project together- picking a pattern we both like and chronicling our design choices, process, and thoughts about it along the way. She suggested the pattern Light and Up, by Caroline Wiens, found on Ravelry.

It’s a simple-but-impressive looking shawl, and I can tell it’s going to be fun to knit. Plus, when tassels are involved but somehow don’t look tacky (Seriously, how did she do that? These are positively sophisticated.), I’m a happy camper.

So in deciding what yarn to use, I realized that I don’t have much in my stash that would work. Everything I have is either already set aside for a project or a particular person, not long enough, or a totally wrong weight. So I though maybe I’d spin up the rest of the llama/merino blend I was given at Rendezvous a couple weeks ago, and make as thin a two-ply yarn as I could manage.

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I spun two bobbins of super-thin one-ply, trying to eyeball as close to half of the bunch as I could. Turns out I didn’t do too bad a job, as there was only about a three-foot section extra on one of the bobbins. I managed to double it up on itself, and that worked quite nicely.

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Towards the end of the plying process, there was just a bit too much yarn for the flyer to keep spinning smoothly. See how crazy snug that is?! I ran out just in time.

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It ended up making a really lovely size cake of this lovely soft oatmeal-colored two-ply, which I am sure will bloom wonderfully once the shawl is knit up and blocked. You may have noticed that I like to combine steps… Blocking is a reasonable time to set twist in your yarn, right?

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If the oatmeal two-ply isn’t long enough to make the shawl as large and luxurious as I’d like, I think I may add the two-ply I finished a week or so ago. The weight isn’t too far off, and I think the colors go together nicely. I hope the llama blend is enough, though. What I’ve realized, through my Slow Fashion October-inspired wardrobe overhaul and over the last couple years of being a dedicated cold-weather-scarf-wearer, is that focusing on neutrals in my wardrobe will serve me well.

The Light and Up pattern photo appears with the pattern on Ravelry, copyright carowiens.

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4 thoughts on “November knits

    1. It is just SO soft! Once I figured out the tension on my wheel (it kept snapping, so I finally had to grease absolutely everything and take the tension down to nothing before slowly moving it up to find the right level), it was a dream to spin! I’m really excited about the two-ply, too. Thank you, thank you!

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