Wednesday, November 9, 2011

The Handspun Exception, Part II

Since I learned to knit about five years ago, I’ve finished sweaters, socks, scarves, hats, mittens, shawls, slippers, toys, and a baby blanket.  I have not, however, managed to finish an afghan despite starting several.  Afghan attempt one was to knit a square a month in 2009 to make a patchwork afghan.  To date, I’ve only finished four squares.  This first afghan project was derailed when in April of 2009, I fell victim to the craze over Shelly Kang’s mitered sock yarn afghan.  I expected the sock yarn blanket would be a three to five year project.  Over two and half years later, and I’m less than a quarter finished.  I will have to pick up the pace significantly to make the five year goal.  I seriously doubt that will happen though as my attention is now only on afghan attempt three—the epic handspun afghan. 

I wrote about my handspun afghan dream several months ago when I was struggling with color challenges.  I heeded my advice, and my next two fiber purchases were much more subdued colors.

Both braids are blue-faced leicester (BFL) dyed by Miss Babs.  The first braid I spun on my spindle before I had my wheel, and after plying, I had a nice light worsted weight yarn in soft colors.  Definite potential for afghan yarn.  My only hesitation was that the BFL fiber was not superwash, and really, did I want to contemplate handwashing an afghan?  While I may come to regret this decision later, I ignored my reservations and started knitting.  A few days later, I had square one of my handspun afghan.

Add to square one, a spinning wheel, another fiber purchase from Miss Babs, and a few months of spinning and knitting time:

I think the blanket will eventually have 15 or 16 squares (each is over 12 inches long/wide), so I’m at least a quarter finished with the squares.  Knitting blanket squares is the other handspun knitting exception that is taking away from Operation Conquer the WIPs, and thus, square five is well underway. 

So lately I’ve been knitting handspun cowls, a hat, and a blanket square, and not one stitch on the Angostura vest.  Operation Conquer clearly has success written all over it.


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