Saturday, July 27, 2013

About that stash diet ...

I really wasn't planning on buying new yarn. Especially after that skein of lace weight that I picked up when my mother was visiting last weekend - when you hear your grandmother would like a lace shawl (and you don't have anything in the stash in the appropriate color family) that's a special dispensation from any yarn diet in my book.

And then this happened later in the week:

That's right - I ran out of yarn on the last round of the fifth color from the end of the garter striped edging on my Rams and Yowes blanket. And not just on the last round, a third of the way from the end-of-round marker (the dark green clip below):

I knew it was going to be close. After all, I had finished the previous color with about two yards to spare. So at around 10:30 on Wednesday night (always a time for clear-headed thinking), I started frantically searching for more yarn to finish the last set of stripes. I'm low on the remaining colors, too, and didn't want to chance it now that I'd run out of one color.

Luckily, I found two options: order more from Jamieson & Smith on Shetland and know that I probably won't be able to pick up this project until after we get back from our vacation, which starts next week, or cross my fingers and see if the Chicago shop listed on ravelry as a potential supplier has the colors I need in stock. (Normally I'd be a dye lot purist but this is for the underside of the blanket border and slight color variances really won't bother me there.)

Success! Windy Knitty responded to my email shortly after they opened the next morning with the terrific news that they did in fact have exactly what I needed, and would be kind enough to set the skeins aside until the weekend so that I could come pick them up.

In the meantime, I've had fun working on Mr. Tinks and Frogs' birthday sweater, which now looks much less like a shrug than when he tried it on a week or two ago.

We took a family excursion up to Andersonville this morning (Tadpole LOVES the train) and I am now the happy owner of enough yarn to finish my blanket.

But I couldn't come away from such a lovely shop (and it is lovely, perhaps my favorite shop in the city now) with just the J&S shetland, not when they had a fantastic selection of indie dyers in gorgeous semi-solids - my favorites.

This Fleur de Fiber (a Chicago dyer I'd never seen before) in a fingering weight merino/seacell blend will be a something for me.

And Tadpole suggested that she should have a green sweater. We decided on this worsted weight from Neighborhood Fiber Company:

A girl after her mama's heart, don't you think? Now I've just got to come up with a sweater pattern that will work with only 400 yards. This one is definitely going to be top-down!

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Popping in

I was all set to post about my latest FO - the first in my latest destashing operation - when I realized that I had probably better save the full write-up for after the recipient actually received it (which, in turn, requires that I get the package out the door). So I'll just give a little sneak peek for now:

Boy, did I find a nice new baby knit. I will definitely be making more of these!

I'm the meantime, I've been plugging away happily on a longer-term project. 

I'm a few rows farther along on the edging than you can see in this picture - I'm on the last color before turning the edge and working the back side of the double- sided edging! This one is taking a little while. If I remember correctly, the rows are several hundred stitches long at this point (closer to 1000 than 500). I'm certainly not going to check that number right now! But I did work out that each row takes about 40 minutes (10 minutes per side isn't bad). Multiply that by four rows for each of the nine colors, plus a couple extra rows for the turn, and you get a number I don't want to think about. All I know is that I'm almost halfway!