Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Yarn Along: Reading My Knitting

I did indeed finish that vest, though it was two days later than intended.  Ever since, my husband has worn it each day.  There will most certainly be more vests on my needles for him in future.  I've thought about this one in particular, but before I jump into yet another garment, I needed to make something small, purely for fun with no timeline.
I bought Cirilia's book at Rhinebeck 2014, where she autographed it for me.  Ever since, I have meant to delve into it more.  Of course there are the hip patterns, but the essays she included are even more interesting to me right now.  So I have been reading it cover to cover, while I simultaneously knit her L'Arbre Hat as part of the Fringe Hatalong No. 2.
The natural choice from my stash was a single skein of Jill Draper Makes Stuff Mini Empire.  As the ball band puts it, this yarn is made from sheep to skein in the US, mainly right here in upstate NY.  If I didn't know any better, I would assume this springy Rambouillet wool was actually cotton.  It has that kind of feel to it, though it's more pleasurable to knit, with more give, than any cotton I've worked with.  The stitch pattern stands out beautifully and seeing it appear has given me such a rush.
In fact, this little hat has been quite a breakthrough for me.  I have avoided most textured stitches, since I have associated them with lots of counting under my breath.  That completely ruins the knitting experience, so I have generally kept to yards of stockinette or garter stitch.  Lately I have been finding my trusty, mindless knitting somewhat tedious.  Lo and behold, I have discovered that patterns like this have a rhythm to them that makes the process much more intuitive than I imagined.  I can anticipate the pattern based on what stitch presents itself on the left needle, rather than counting what I have already knitted.  The tidy alternating columns of garter stitch and the little tree pattern are my guide, instead of the written directions.  I suppose this is old news for all you veteran knitters, but any beginners reading should be encouraged to give textured stitches a try.  They may surprise you!

12 comments:

elizabeth said...

that's really lovely!! love those pictures and the vest looks wonderful!! that purple is lovely and the texture quite appealing! :)

Donna said...

The vest looks nice. I bet it feels great to have it finished. Such a pretty hat pattern you picked!

Heather said...

Oh I love that hat pattern! And the yarn looks so soft!

Sarah said...

I just discovered that designer yesterday while browsing ravelry and knew immediately without even reading her bio that she was in Seattle or portland- the current designs are so very Northwest. Your hat is lovely!

jsoxford.net said...

Really lovely! I'm working on a hat too. I'm sliiiightly regretting my choice to sock yarn the thing. Stockinette for life.

momto5 said...

i am going to have to check out that book. that pattern is wonderful!
i love that last photo. <3

fjord girl said...

That is such a lovely pattern!

Wendy said...

Glad your husband liked the vest - it's always so satisfying to make a well-loved gift. That textured stitch in your hat looks great!

Jess said...

Beautiful hat! Your description of the yarn is so vivid, I want to reach through the screen and squeeze.

Zauberflink said...

Oh that last picture :-) such a yummy yarn! And I love the pattern and the way you describe the knitting process. I knit the same way - I just cannot relay on counting. I really have to understand and 'see' what I'm doing ;-)

The Sitting Tree said...

The stitch pattern in your hat is fantastic! I'm adding that book to my reading list.

Elizabeth said...

The stitch pattern looks great! I have little yarnies too, knitters of the future!