Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Ravin' Ravens

Irtfa'a is done!

First, blocking shots and then the reveal below.

This thing is huge. I haven't measured it, but it's definitely larger than my wingspan (which is probably 5'--I have short arms for my height).

Blocking it was quite an undertaking; as you can see in the full shot, I ran out of room on the sheet and had to add an emergency pillowcase. My housemates were very impressed.

And here it is: the main event.

Pattern: Irtfa'a by Anne Hanson, who kicks seventeen kinds of major ass.

Yarn: Posh Yarn Cecilia in "Onyx" (50/50 cashmere/silk, sadly discontinued). This is my favorite shot, which coincidentally mimics Anne's cover photo.

And I think this is my new ravatar.

This was such a huge undertaking, but it was completely worth it. Now I think I'm going to knit something a little smaller.

Thursday, August 19, 2010


Okay, first of all, Irtfa'a is DONE. Off the needles, blocked, clipped, the whole shebang. I just need to take pictures, and then I swear I will post them.

That means the knitting focus for the moment is my Papyrus shawl. I think I'm going to try to release it under the Knit Picks Independent Designer Program, as it was designed with a Knit Picks yarn. The greater visibility does come with a slight financial hit, but if no one's buying your patterns, you're not making any money anyway, right?

And last but not least: I got a job at a yarn store! The LYS I frequent recently changed management, and when I inquired, the new owner was looking for someone--and that someone was me. It won't replace my old job, but it'll be a fantastic addition. Much yarn awaits . . .

Friday, August 13, 2010

Herne is here

I'm proud to announce (finally!) the release of Herne!

Herne is named for a rabbit who belonged to dear friends--he probably wouldn’t have found much interest in the twiggy stems of the scarf, but he’d definitely have appreciated the leafy fronds that grow out of them.

Lacy, airy, and delicate, Herne is a quick and enjoyable knit. The pattern features both charts and written instructions. The scarf is worked in two halves and grafted. It is available for $5 (USD).

Thanks to the marvelous Nyx, I had way too many photos to include in the pattern. Some are up on Ravelry, and here are some of my favorites.

The Rav page linked above has the download link. Eeee!

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Startitis, I has it

And in a big way. For so long I've been looking at the same two things--the stripey scarf and Irtfa'a, with a little sock and baby sweater knitting now and then. Now the stripey scarf is done, the baby sweater is done, Irtfa'a nears completion, and, sister, I am starting like crazy.

The first thing I started is a Lily of the Valley scarf from Knitted Lace of Estonia, in some of the Malabrigo Lace from a few weeks back. It is very soft and purty.

I'm concerned that the lace won't open up enough at this gauge, though. I went down two needles sizes from the pattern to account for using laceweight instead of fingering. Thoughts?

I also dragged my Papyrus shawl out of hibernation--I'm determined to finish the test knit and get the pattern out there. (I find it amusing that when I put it away I was so convinced I'd be going right back to it that I put it away complete with needles and row counter. I crack me up. On the other hand, it does save me the trouble of figuring out which needles I used and which row I was on.)

For now, I've managed to confine my actual starting of projects to just the lily scarf and the resurrected shawl. In terms of preparation, though, I've gone a bit off the rails.

This J. Knits* alpaca lace came to me already wound, a gift from Nyx, and I paired it with Fernfrost by Anne Hanson. I also strung some of the beads, as you see--they were also a gift from Nyx, who is determined to make me love beading.

I'm thinking the beads will go between the yarnovers in each fern; any suggestions?

Finally, I wound this knitswithsticks yarn, like, forever ago, with the intention of making socks for my friend Jennifer. And I've found the perfect (or so ~I~ think) pattern--the Be Mine socks from 2-at-a-Time Socks by Melissa Morgan-Oakes. It has cabled hearts!

For the moment, I'm (mostly) still knitting Irtfa'a. But as soon as that's done--baby, I'm going to TOWN.

*Their website is apparently undergoing a redesign?

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

New York, New York

A few weeks ago, I went to New York City for the first time ever. This probably wouldn't be so odd if I hadn't LIVED in New York for three years. (I lived upstate. It's far away from NYC.)

But anyway, of course I had to go check out Manhattan's best yarn store, Knitty City. And oh boy, did I get some pretties.

I have to say, when I first walked into the store, I wasn't super-impressed. The yarn is organized by weight (more or less), but multiple brands are shoved together on the same shelf, and the place is full to bursting. I really had to do some digging--although I was richly rewarded. And though several staff members were present in the shop (albeit I think they were taking a break from a class, maybe?), no one greeted or even acknowledged me until I spoke directly to them.
After that, though, I did have a nice conversation with one employee, who was very helpful, and I think the store's owner herself rang me up. And SHE was super--she complimented me on my taste in yarn, pointed out a few accessories that were fun, and showed every indication of being willing to talk to me all day; I didn't feel at all hurried. So although the beginning of my visit wasn't great, overall I was left with a good impression and would definitely go back.

And what did I buy, you ask? I bought yarn!

First is a skein of Sweet Georgia Tough Love Sock (80/20 superwash merino/nylon) in colorway "Nightshade." Just LOOK at that color saturation. When the Irishman saw this, he started muttering about socks. Maybe I can convince him he'd like to learn to knit . . .

And then . . . Sea Silk! I saw Sea Silk described on Rav once as "the Cadillac of lace yarns," and ain't it the truth. I've never knit with it before--I am SO excited! The picture doesn't do it justice, of course. I think the colorway is Nova Scotia, but it's hard to tell. (Incidentally, I kind of like it that Handmaiden doesn't label her skeins--it makes it more fun that way.)

So yes indeed--I had fun in New York . . . and I have the yarn to prove it.