Thursday, November 3, 2011

The Handspun Exception, Part I

If I have any hope of actually finishing my seven current WIPs before the end of the year, a challenge I’ve come to think of as Operation Conquer the WIPs, it sort of goes without saying that I shouldn’t cast on new projects.  However, to preserve my sanity and to avoid knitting feeling completely like work, I have allowed myself a couple of exceptions—mainly that I’m allowed to work on small projects with handspun yarn.  The handspun skeins are starting to pile up and several are floating around that are only about 100-200 yards.   I’ve been perusing patterns for these skeins for months and recently have been dying to get going on a few.  

In the last week, despite proclaiming my dedication to Operation Conquer, I started two new projects.

Yarn spun from Fiber Optic superwash merino in "Peacock"

The hat is going along well enough, but I when stumbled onto designer Carina Spencer’s Ravelry pattern page last week, I saw Betula Ring and realized I had a handspun skein that might work.  The yarn I had in mind is little lighter than the bulky weight called for, but I bought the pattern anyway and cast on in minutes.  Less than 24 hours later I was binding off.  About 48 hours after that the cowl was blocked, dried, and had buttons.

Yarn spun from Bee Mice Elf superwash merino fiber in "Old Flame"

I’ve never been a huge fan of cowls, but I liked that this one could be worn in different ways so I gave it a shot.  The pattern absolutely flies, and with the unusually cold few days we had last weekend, I even got a chance to wear it.

Yup, totally bribed Rugby and Juno to participate in photo shoot

I may or may not have purchased that grey shirt while making the cowl so I would have something to wear with it.  This cowl is actually my first completely finished project made with my own handspun yarn. I enjoyed making this so much, I had to talk myself out of casting on another one right away with more handspun.  That only lasted a few days.  I cast on a second one today.

Off to pack now since I'm leaving for Atlanta tomorrow.  Ten hours in the car should make for some productive knitting time.   I really should leave the handspun projects at home and only bring Angostura and a sock, but....nah.


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