Thursday, July 10, 2014

summer sky citron

There are few knitting-related things more satisfying than planning out a project and having it turn out just as you'd hoped.  Happily, that was exactly what happened with my handspun Citron shawl!  Yay!  I started out with eight ounces of beautiful blue and white roving from Skirted Fleece Mill, in a soft, perfectly prepared merino/alpaca/silk blend.  It came from the mill labeled as 'Snow Angels,' but the colors looked to me more like fluffy clouds in a summer sky.
  spinning roving skirted fleece mill 
 I debated whether to spin this into a two-ply yarn, for a more barber-poled look, or to chain-ply it to keep the gorgeous, pure colors together.  In the end, I decided to two-ply it to prevent weird color-pooling when the rows on the knitted shawl got very long towards the end. 
 spinning bobbins 
 blue white handspun yarn 
After plying, I had 888 yards of a fingering-weight yarn.  It's one of my favorite handspun yarns to date-- the merino kept it from becoming too wiry even though I was spinning thin, the alpaca added some staple length to the shorter-staple merino, and the silk gave the yarn a beautiful sheen.  And of course, the fiber prep was gorgeous.  This is the second fiber I've spun from The Skirted Fleece (this was the first one) and both braids have been a pleasure to work with.  There have been virtually no felted bits at all, and the fiber is dyed consistently through the braid, not just on the outer layer.  

And for all of the above reasons, I bought four more eight ounce braids of fiber at The Skirted Fleece Mill when I went to visit my mom for a weekend.

I regret nothing.
 handspun yarn merino alpaca silk 
I cast on the Citron Grande pattern a few days before my trip to Boston as relaxing travel-knitting, and I finished it in two and a half weeks. The very, very long purl-back rows at the end got a bit tedious, but over all, I really enjoyed this project.  

 handspun knitting citron shawl 
I'm so happy with how the finished shawl turned out!  It's huge and light and airy, and it's very cozy either wrapped close to my neck like a scarf or wrapped around my shoulders like a socially acceptable Snuggie.  It's hard to imagine needing it at the moment, since it's been so hot that I run the risk of actually melting every time I leave my apartment, but when winter gets here, I know I'll be glad that I made myself a hoard of knitwear.
 handknit citron grande handspun 
 The only modification that I made to the pattern was that instead of knitting my increases through the back loop to close up the holes, I knitted into the front of the increases to create a radiating pattern of eyelets.  I did this by accident on my first Citron shawl, when I was a newer knitter, and I liked it so much that I decided to do it intentionally this time. 
 handspun shawl blue white 
As soon as I finished this project, I wanted to start a zillion other ones.  I cast on a pair of socks and a shawl, spun up a four ounce braid of Malabrigo merino (and speaking of felted bits and inconsistent dyeing, Malabrigo roving, I am looking right at you.  Good thing you're so pretty), spun a Loop Bullseye Bump (perfect prep, I want to buy a hundred more of them), and did tons of knitting on a super-secret project.  And I'm having to resist the urge to cast on a hat and another shawl and some fingerless mitts.  I want to knit and spin all the things!  I think it's the influence of those sneaky KnitGirllls.  I want to win Stash Dash!  For non-knitters, that means knitting or spinning a 5K worth of yarn, or 5,468 yards, before August 7th.  At the moment, I'm at 3381.2 yards.  I think I'm going to make it!

What projects are inspiring you lately?  

No comments:

Post a Comment

thank you so much for visiting, and for your thoughts! x