I Love a Good Yarn

Yarns, stories, and sometimes stories about yarn


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Yarn diet fail

The yarn diet is over. I had hoped to use up a lot more of my stash before buying anything new (I haven’t bought any yarn since Rhinebeck in October!), but I knew I was lost when Loop of London posted the photo below to its Facebook feed a few days ago:

Loop London image

The yarn in the photo is by Lichen and Lace, an outfit in New Brunswick, Canada. To me it’s the epitome of warmth–I can practically feel how soft the yarn is, and the color speaks so strongly of spring and rosy outlooks that it probably has the power melt the snow outside, even as the mercury dips below zero.

I didn’t buy this yarn, though I will certainly be looking out for this producer’s product in the near future. Instead I stopped into my local yarn store to say Happy New Year and came out with these:

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I don’t have a lot of purple and rose in my life, so it was time for Louisa Harding and Manos del Uruguay to inject some of these joyful colors into my winter. Don’t know what I’ll do with them, but I’m sure excited to explore the possibilities.

And if that weren’t enough, I also picked up a real impulse buy, and a luxurious one at that:

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This 100% cashmere fun-size bundle from Lux Adorna Knits comes with a chevron cowl pattern as well as more cowl pattern options on the website. Having made a nice warm cowl for a friend’s birthday recently, I thought I’d treat myself to something similar. I love the colors–I hadn’t realized the colorway was called “Big Apple” until I got home, but I found it apt.

Today was also the final delivery of my 12-month yarn of the month club subscription from The Perfect Blend. The only reason I didn’t renew is that I’ve only made four of the 12 projects from the 2017 series so far:

And I know I’ll miss those monthly deliveries–January’s yarn and project are spectacularly gorgeous–but that will be more incentive for me to work through these small pieces throughout the warmer weather months so I can jump back into the club starting in 2019.

Happy knitting everyone!


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Thursday threads

I was going to do separate WIP Wednesday and FO Friday posts, but instead I’m globbing them together in a single “Thursday threads.” It’s almost summer, and we all have things we’d rather be doing than writing/reading blog posts, right?

The Felicity top is finished, and the fit is really nice.

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This is even without blocking. Because of the large eyelets, I have to wear something underneath, but I knew that going into the project. And I loved the construction. The lower bodice is knit so that cast-on and bind-off edges are seamed to make a tube. Stitches are then picked up from the top of the tube and worked in the round, adding little four-row sleeve extensions. The decreases worked on the upper bodice form a really flattering neckline. I’m often confounded by bottom-up sweaters in trying to get the length right, and with top-down sweaters in trying to get the waistline fitted properly. This construction takes so much of the guesswork out, as you just have to use your gauge to determine how long the lower bodice needs to be and cast on the appropriate number of stitches, and then work up from there until the desired height of the neckline is achieved. And the addition of the eyelets makes a very pretty and feminine fabric. I will definitely use this approach to do some long-sleeve sweaters in heavier weight yarns for the fall/winter.

The WIP is another project from my The Perfect Blend yarn-of-the-month club, the My Cup of Tea Socks.

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The yarn is by Whole Knit ‘n’ Caboodle (access to the yarn selection is only available to wholesalers, unfortunately), which is based in Delmar, NY. The colorway is tea leaves, and it is the most nature-inspired green I think I’ve ever seen. It is almost the exact hue of my lawn after a gentle rain (I know this, because I’m looking out my window now after a brief rain shower!). Verdant is what I’d call it. And it’s very nice to work with, even on size one DP needles.

I love making socks, but I think I’ve I’ve only made six pairs in the 17 or so years I’ve been knitting, so it was high time to make more. And I’ve only made one pair for myself – the very first pair, which is a bit misshapen and amateurish, but I love them anyway. But I’m so excited to expand my sock collection this summer, as they make for the perfect warm weather project.

 


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A flurry of finished objects – part one

Over the last month, while I haven’t been writing blog posts at all, I’ve divided my time between finishing my WIPs and fretting over my 17-year-old cat, whose health is declining. She’s never been a very nice kitty, swatting and snarling at every other cat that’s ever shared our home. But she’s been mine for about 14 years, and she does have the loudest motorboat purr I’ve ever heard, so I’m still going to be very sad when she goes.

But, the month was super productive on the knitting front. The first two FOs I’d like to share use yarn and designs by Hudson Valley area dyers/designers. These yarns and patterns came to me as part of my yarn-of-the-month subscription, courtesy of The Perfect Blend yarn and tea shop in Saugerties, NY. Each installment has a single skein of hand-dyed yarn, a suggested pattern, and a little goodie, such as stitch markers, a project bag, wool wash, or some such treat. The colors used by the dyers are all inspired by some aspect of the Hudson Valley.

The first project was a ribble cowl using a soft and lush alpaca/silk blend.

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It was supplied by Nest Creative Keepsakes, based in Woodstock, NY. It was really nice to work with, and the colors were wonderfully bold. The inspiration for the colors is the Ashokan reservior (image from Wikipedia):

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Though the cowl was a Mother’s Day gift for my mom, I had to try it on to be sure it was indeed the right gift for such an awesome mom. It fit the bill.

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FO #2 from my yarn-of-the-month stash is the Main Street Shawl by Toby Roxane Designs. The yarn is Chandelier and the colorway is Main Street, which to me looks like copper when it oxidizes, but there’s still a bit of copper peeking through here and there.

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The color inspiration is Main Street in Saugerties, NY (image from the Hudson Valley Sojourner):

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A great combination of old and new, downtown Saugerties offers independent bookstores, bakeries and eateries, antique stores, unique gift shops, one of the best grandma slices you’ll ever find, and of course, my LYS. And thanks to that LYS, I now have this gorgeous shawl.

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Check out the other patterns available in the Toby Roxane Designs Ravelry store. I’m sure I’ll be pulling some of those lacy shawl patterns to use with the yarns purchased in Montreal.

The next “Flurry of FOs” installment – two Andrea Mowry designs.


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Yarn-of-the-month club

This lovely box appeared on my doorstep yesterday.

img_1694It’s the first installment of a new yarn-of-the-month club offered by the wonderful The Perfect Blend yarn and tea shop in Saugerties, NY. Each month, the color of the hand-dyed skein will reflect some aspect of New York’s beautiful Hudson Valley. This month, the inspiration was Saugerties’ own lighthouse.

img_1271The lighthouse is also a B&B and has a gorgeous deck on the river side where the public can bring picnics or just sit for a while and enjoy the views. It’s well worth the visit at any time of year and a fitting theme for the first skein.

Because I love my local yarn store so much, I of course booked the entire year’s worth of deliveries, which means I’ll be treated to additional goodies:

img_1696Along with the yarn, cowl pattern, postcard depicting the lighthouse, and note from Mary, the store’s gracious and delightful owner, I received a set of jeweled stitch markers in a little canvas pouch, a paper ruler, and a della Q project bag. I’m so excited to work with this gorgeous yarn. I’m also thrilled to be able to support my local yarn store and Hudson Valley dyers.

The yarn-of-the-month club is open to anyone. Click the links above for more information on The Perfect Blend and how you can get in on this awesome program.