Posts Tagged ‘scarf’

A fog rolling in

April 3, 2011

This may be my proudest FO moment yet, as this is possibly the most complicated thing I’ve ever knitted (yep, a quick squiz at my Ravelry project page confirms this is so). I’d like to take this opportunity to point out that I’ve only been knitting for five years, and have been doing a PhD for most of that time. Go me! (Don’t ask me about colourwork or steeks, though.)

This is my first Swallowtail, knitted in a yarn that might be the most beautiful in the world. Ever. Softness, colour, smoothness, sheen, stitch definition: it ticks all the boxes. I found it at k1 yarns in Edinburgh when I was there last year, and the label identifies it as Belle Epoque Hand Dyed Yarns silk sock in Haar. It’s 50% silk and 50% superwash merino but is lovelier than any wool-silk blend I’ve seen before. The friendly assistant explained to me that ‘haar’ is a sort of fog they get in Edinburgh, that rolls along the cobbled streets. I think the name is perfect.

I managed to knit this entirely without mistakes which is probably another first for me. Turns out the ‘no knitting when tired/drunk/upset’ rule actually works! This was also my first encounter with nupps, which frankly I don’t see the reason for. Purling 5 together was never going to happen for me even with a pure wool yarn, so I used the cheat of older and wiser Ravelers, i.e. slip 2 knitwise, purl 3 together, pass slipped stitches over. And even that was a harrowing experience. From now on, this girl is saying NUP! to nupps.

I guess they are kinda pretty though. But only kinda.

My misty swallowtail is raveled here. And unfortunately, you can’t buy Belle Epoque yarns online, so get yourself over to Edinburgh. And bring me back another skein too.

Rainbow Wools

June 17, 2009

yellows

I know I’ve shown a lot of yarn and not a lot of knitting lately, but I want to take a moment to tell you about a local company whose yarn I just adore. They’re called Rainbow Wools and I first discovered them at the Old Bus Depot Markets in Canberra last year. Being such a lover of handspun and hand-dyed things, I gravitated immediately to the stall heaped high with thick, soft, slubby and curly yarns in so many amazing colours. At the time I was so caught up in the tactile experience that I didn’t get the company details, so later I was sorry I couldn’t look them up to buy more. I did however buy the most beautiful skein of their mushroom wool in a gorgeous hot pink. I was so in love with it that it became a scarf within days.

hot pink scarf

A few months went by. I loved my pink scarf and so did everyone else. Occasionally I hoped I might see the producer again, but I couldn’t really remember much about their other yarns, I just had this image of pinks and yellows and purples, fuzzy and soft and squishy. The stuff of stash fantasies.

Then in January, as we were taking a road trip down the NSW coast on our way back home to Canberra after Christmas in Queensland, we stopped in Bellingen, one of my favourite little towns. It’s the most gorgeous place—you really must visit if you can—but I won’t go into all its wonders now. Suffice to say that in a little craft store off the main street, I discovered some amazing, beautiful wool. Thick, slubby, soft, and with so many different colours. I think I managed to limit myself to five or six skeins, all on a different colour scheme—purples, greens, blues, pinks…bliss. That’s one of those yarns in the header pic of the blog. That’s how much I was in love with them. Over the next few months I took out this wool every time I looked through my stash. I admired it and snuggled it but didn’t use it yet. I knew the time would come. Only recently did I make the first project with this wool, and appropriately, it was a gift for a very special friend.

blues

However I still didn’t know the name of the company that made this wool, this wonderful addition to my knitting life. It wasn’t until I returned to the Bus Depot Markets for this year’s Celebration of Wool that my question was answered. Imagine my delight when I again spotted the stall piled with tasty, happy woolly goodness. At this stage I was thinking only of my pink scarf (which I happened to be wearing at the time), I didn’t connect it with the yarn I got in Bellingen until I started digging through the wares. Imagine my further delight on discovering that the progenitor of the pink scarf, and the maker of the Bellingen wool, were one and the same! It was like an epiphany. Of course I made sure I got their card, and predictably a few skeins decided they just couldn’t live without me.

So, I exhort all you knitters, go unto Rainbow Wools and be happy. Ever since the epiphany and the green beret I’m itching to knit something else with this beautiful wool. It’s like a good friend, a cup of hot chocolate, and a sweet little puppy all rolled into one—happy and comforting.

pinks