I really like my new Maize Cowl. I am pretty sure that it will be my go to scarf when the weather cools off. For Nashville that will be quite awhile yet. I have a project page for it on Ravelry.
I love the texture and ease of knitting in this design. I wrote it about 8 years ago as pattern support for my Classic Merino Superwash DK yarn. It was a new base that I wanted a one skein project to help promote it. Up until now I have only had it available in my booth. To celebrate my new website however, I have decided to publish it online. It is on my website only, for a $4 download. I haven’t listed it on Ravelry. I may in the future, but for now it’s only on my website or in my booth at festivals.
Speaking of festivals, I am going to be in Charlotte, NC next weekend for the second annual Southern Comforts Fiber Market. I will be leaving on Wednesday and setting up the booth on Thursday. The festival happens on Friday and Saturday. I have really enjoyed my nice long break, but it will also be good to get back to the festivals. I like being with the knitters and talking about yarn.
I’ll start today’s post with an update on what is on my needles. You may recall I am working on the Bensusan shawl in my Classic Merino DK yarn in the color Cypress. I have progressed to the main chart and added the second skein of yarn. I am enjoying the variety of the stitch patterns. It’s easily memorized but interesting. I love cables.
The other project I have going is my cowl using the yarn my daughter brought me from Ireland. I am about 25% done on it. I cast it on a couple days ago. It’s a pretty quick and easy knit so it shouldn’t take too long to make.
It will be August very soon and I will be back to festival vending. We are still working on restocking inventory. Within the last couple weeks we have added some more Undyed yarn to the website. I stock two Organic Cotton yarns (a sport weight and a worsted weight) and also small quantities of all our Merino wool yarns as Bare yarn for those who wish to use it that way or to dye themselves.
We have also recently finished some new Darning-Eggs in Cherry and Maple woods. We have some more Walnut in progress.
Last night two of the grandchildren were over and were given a fun ride around the property in my husband’s new cart he built for the lawn tractor. They had fun and didn’t want it to end.
Things haven’t slowed down much. We have been working on yarn labeling and restocking a lot. We finished that job on Tuesday. I increased our inventory for the fall since I have a very busy show schedule and don’t want to run out of anything that I may not have time to redye until later in the fall. Most of the yarn is in the trailer but we have about 20% of the inventory in our work room storage now since I couldn’t fit it all in the trailer storage anymore. I hitched up the trailer to the new truck and moved it closer to the work room door to make loading easier.
I have been enjoying my new truck. I got a new Rush plate for the front bumper and we got my tonneau cover transferred over from my old truck. Today we also got a new bed liner mat for it so it’s all ready for traveling next month.
One of my daughters has been doing missionary work in Ireland since January 2021. She made the trip home on Monday, so we have enjoyed visiting with her and other family for the last few days. She brought me some presents; handmade jewelry (which I am wearing and didn’t get a picture of, sorry), candy, and some yarn. I already know what I am going to do with the green Donegal tweed. It will be a Maize cowl, which is a pattern I wrote about 8 years ago for my DK weight yarn. The white yarn is some very lovely lanolin rich hand-spun, which I am not sure what I will use it for yet.
I haven’t started the cowl yet but I did finish Midlothian and start a new shawl last week. I was finally able to get Midlothian blocked today because all the yarn is now out of the way in the work room.
The new shawl on my needles at the moment is called Bensusan. I am using my Classic Merino Superwash DK for it in Cypress. The color is a bit off in this picture. It is more accurate on my website if you click through and select the color there. It’s an olivey brown. I like the texture of the cables and twisted stitches, which are fun to knit too.
That’s about it for my post today. I need to get school finished with my youngest. We are on the last chapter of The Goblet of Fire for our reading time and I am looking forward to starting The Order of the Phoenix. :-)
I am leaving tomorrow for Mid-Ohio Fiber Fair in Newark. It is a one day show, Saturday 9-5. I will be doing the set up before the show Saturday morning and then packing up at 5. It’s a challenge to do that but it will be fine. I did it last year. So I am driving up tomorrow and will be home on Sunday afternoon.
After this I will be home until the second week in August. That sounds like a break, and it is, but while I am home we will be dyeing this yarn that arrived yesterday.
That is over 450 pounds of yarn. I am looking forward to using my new drying lines though, so there is that. 😁
In knitting news, I am about to start chart 2 on my Midlothian shawl. I thought I was done with chart 1 and had done 6 rows of chart 2. I began row 7 and I had too many stitches for it to work. So, after an investigation and ripping out those 6.5 rows, I am ready to go again. I will be doing one more repeat of chart 1 for a total of 23 instead of 21. I really hope this won’t necessitate using more than 2 skeins. It was either this option or I would have to rip back 4 more rows.
I still haven’t started my other shawl or the second sock. I was sorely tempted last night to avoid the ripping back until later but I pushed through. 🙃 See you soon 😊.
I am very excited about the new drying lines. We ended up with 7 which is almost double what we had before. But that’s not the best part; the proximity to our work area is going to be awesome. I can even see it from in the house looking out any back window. That’s a big help when rain is threatening or if it’s windy, for checking on things.
This was taken from under the cover where we set out the dye pots. Our old lines were way over on the other side of the work shop (the green sided building). This location cuts the distance in half at least, and that’s just our lines. Our neighbor’s that we used are even farther. We will be putting these new lines to use in just a few weeks. We have an order of new yarn arriving very soon to restock for the second half of the festival season.
Now on to knitting updates. I finished the first Gridiron sock.
Because I was asked to share booth pictures from the Great Lakes Fiber Show, here ya go. The weather was pretty nice and we had a good turn out, especially on Saturday.
I have today and tomorrow at home and then I am off to Franklin, IN for Hoosier Hills Fiber Festival. I got some house cleaning, and school work with my youngest son done today. I also made a pot of spaghetti sauce for dinner. It’s actually good to be able to slow down for a couple days and reconnect with my home and family. It’s nice to travel and meet with the knitters at festivals but it’s even better to come home.
Speaking of home and good things, I want to share one last set of pictures of our garden. I can take absolutely no credit for it. It’s all Jerry’s doing and he is pretty good at it. I can’t wait for fresh veggies. 🙂
I have been knitting on my Gridiron sock. I am almost to the toe decreases on this first sock. I have not cast on yet for my two booth samples but as you can see I have wound a skein of each of the yarns and put them in my knitting bag. I brought them along on my trip to Wooster, OH in hopes of a bit of time to start them.
I will be setting up the booth this morning for the Great Lakes Fiber Show but if I get done early enough I can squeeze in some time to knit tonight.
In other news, while I am away this weekend, my husband is busy upgrading our yarn drying lines. Here is what we have so far. I am excited about this. Not only will there be more room but they are right next to our work area instead of on the other side of the yard. It’s going to be great!
He took this picture yesterday. I’ll update when I get home with the progress.
I am excited to report that I have progressed to the sleeves on my Gansey.
I have worked the first shoulder strap and left the stitches on a holder while I am working the second one.
I find I prefer using dpns for this part. I will probably continue to use them for the sleeves although it would be okay if you want to use circulars too. I just tend to like dpns better.
My next step will be to pick up stitches on the front and back sleeve opening to be added to the shoulder strap and gusset stitches and work the sleeves in the round. I have my charts all ready to use for those. I am really having fun making this sweater. 🙂
Good day all! Hope you are enjoying the beginning of spring. We are experiencing a little bit of lingering cool gray weather this week but it will be warmer next week.
I thought I’d update you on the gansey project today. I am beyond the underarm gusset and working the upper body halves flat now.
I took this picture yesterday and measured it again. The gauge was still coming up smaller than I had planned for based on the swatch. I decided to heat up my iron and give it a quick steam to see if that would help.
I don’t know if it’s obvious looking here but the steaming did help. I feel a bit more confident that it will be at least pretty close to the intended size. In a relaxed state it measures easily as 40″ or so. I wanted 42″, which I hope can be achieved with a wet block and some pinning out.
I had a very successful show this past weekend in Raleigh, NC at the Carolina Fiber Festival. It was very exhausting too and I am glad to be back home for a bit.
I thought I would share these two photos of the booth because they show my newest samples which you watched the progress of recently.
So that brings me to the current state of my gansey. It is looking great. I am to the point where I am beginning the underarm gusset. I am annoyed however that, as usual for me, swatches lie. My gauge was 22 stitches in 4 inches in the swatch and is currently 25 stitches in 4 inches. To be fair the sweater is not washed and blocked so we will see. I thought it was looking a bit small. It will be fine regardless as far as the pattern since I can just change that, but it’s not gonna fit me comfortably at its current dimensions. Sigh.
Good morning! Over the weekend I bound off and blocked my Debussy Shawl. I wore it this morning too while I had my quiet time with my coffee and reading. It was still a bit chilly this morning but we are in for some warmer, brighter days this week. Spring is coming soon!
I ended up doing only one extra repeat of chart 5 for a total of 8. The medium size has 7 and the large has 10. I weighed my remaining yarn between the end of the 7th repeat and the end of the 8th. I found that I used 35g for that repeat. I determined I would need at least 25-30g to do the final edge chart and at that time had 51g, so clearly there was not enough yarn to do anymore repeats of chart 5. I proceeded with the 18 rows of chart 6 and I have 21g left over.
I measured it this morning after being off the blocking pins for a little while. The long side, which is the diagonal edge is about 69″ and the shortest side is 41″. The measurement down from the top (longest edge) to the point, if you were wearing it like a triangle shawl is about 30″. So all that means it is pretty close to the largest size in Dee’s pattern even without the other two repeats. It’s a nice size but not huge.
I got straight to work on my gansey design after finishing the shawl. I decided to use my Classic Merino Superwash Sport yarn. I then decided that the Earl Grey would make a nice color that I hoped would show off the stitch patterns well. I know that traditionally ganseys were made with dark blue yarn and I did consider using my Midnight Blue, but I could see it in the Earl Grey in my head and went for it. I dyed 10 skeins, figuring I will probably use at least 6 for the 42″ sweater I am planning.
I worked up a stockinette swatch on size 4US needles and got a gauge of 5.5 stitches and 8.5 rows per inch. I used a remnant of Emerald for the plain swatch while waiting for the grey to dry. I spent some time perusing and selecting a stitch pattern arrangement. I graphed a portion for swatching and used the grey for that. I ended up making a minor change after knitting a few rows. Maybe you can see in the swatch that the ribbing between the double moss at the left side and the chevron in the middle. I changed that vertical column to seed stitch so it wouldn’t recede so much.
I like how the elements look next to each other. I began knitting the bottom welt last night. I am using size 3US needles for the garter welts and will do that for the definition ridges in the body and sleeves as well. I am doing the bottom welts separate for front and back and will join to work in the round leaving them separate but with a slight overlap at the side seam point. I did go with the channel island cast on for it. It’s a bit fiddly at first but not difficult once you get the rhythm down and it looks nice. I knit a 2″ long welt because I don’t like a welt that flips up.
Okay, that’s it for now. I should get the second welt done today and have it on the circular needles working the main body very soon. I am excited!