I started an intricate beadwork project a week or two ago, and it’s both challenging and fun. I’m excited to keep working on it, and I’m particularly excited to use it when it’s finally finished. However, beadwork isn’t knitting. I can sink a half hour into beadwork, or maybe even a full hour, and then I have to put it down and leave it for a couple of days- progress is slow, and it’s not incredibly gratifying. I love all kinds of crafts, from origami to sewing, but I am a knitter through and through.
Last week, when I bound off my most recent pair of socks, I went “shopping” in my dear friend Pat’s stash. I intended to look for sock yarn, but some worsted cranberry mystery wool caught my eye and that was that. I became the proud owner of four skeins of gorgeously jewel toned yarn, with no idea where it came from or how many yards were in each skein.
In a moment of weakness the day before yesterday, I bought a cabled sweater pattern that I’ve been eyeing for years. The Robin Hoodie sweater, which is both rugged and feminine depending on who’s wearing it, captivated my attention well before I ever knit my first sweater. I’ve always enjoyed cables, and this ethereal, woodland fairy tale design makes me want to (just as the example photos show) go out into the woods with my bow and drink mead and write in a leather-bound book.
And so, my astute friends, you have probably gathered that this is a recipe for disaster. A moderately large (but ultimately unknown) quantity of yarn, when paired with a yardage-demanding cabled pattern (with a hood!), means that yarn chicken is not only inevitable, but inevitably a disaster. So far I have about half the yoke chart done, and half a skein gone. On the left is a full skein-cake (I have three of those), on the right is what’s left of the fourth one, plus how much is done on the actual sweater.
At this rate, the thing will not likely have sleeves, much less a hood, and after my 3/4 sleeve, hip-skimming Brick (which, don’t get me wrong, I love dearly), I want something different. I want a Robin Hoodie in red. But then again, this pattern is meant to be knit in greens, browns, grays… foresty neutrals, if you will. I don’t know what I was thinking. We can chalk this one up to yarn fumes, and in the meantime, I’ll be casting on a simple, non-cabled and non-colorwork cardigan, maybe with some openwork details, to make this mystery yarn work as a sweater. Then, once I’m convinced it’ll stick, I’ll rip out the cables.