Scarves in the Round

I might have a new knitting obsession. My long time obsession is hats. Fortunately, my sweetie loves wearing knit hats and none of my experiments go to waste. (If you’re interested in learning to design knit hats, there’s a class coming up and I’ll share my hat secrets with you!). My new obsession is scarves knit in the round as a tube and then seamed together. It’s easy knitting because it’s mostly stockinette and it grows quickly. It also has been giving me a chance to play with yarns in my stash and experiment with yarns that aren’t always easy to find projects for. There are two that I’m working on plus an idea I have for a third, and they’re all samples for the class “What Do I Do With This Yarn?”. Here are the lovelies and a little about each!

My newest creation began with a skein of bulky striping yarn that was so soft and cuddly that I had to have it.   Looking in my stash to find a yarn to pair with it, I found some light pink yarn but it was worsted weight. I decided to use them together and hold the worsted weight yarn double so that the yarn weights match up. On top of all that I’m using a slightly bigger needle size than I normally would with bulky yarn so that I’m creating a slightly looser fabric that will drape a little.

For this green scarf, I found two yarns in my stash that were green and had different textures and tones so that there is some similarity and some contrast. The blue toned smooth yarn is a cotton alpaca blend and kind of slippery. The yellowish-green yarn is a fuzzy mohair yarn. To figure out an appealing stripe pattern, I used the Random Stripe Generator. I put in my two colors and kept refreshing the screen until it came up with some stripes I liked. After two repeats I realized that I wouldn’t have enough of the cotton blend yarn to do another repeat and have started a lace pattern with only the mohair. My plan is to keep going until I run out of yarn or it’s long enough to seam together into an infinity scarf that I can wrap around twice when I’m wearing it.

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These three have been sitting on my coffee table for the past few days as I’ve been trying to decide what to do with them. I really like the three of them together and am enjoying the chevrons of the pink scarf. Maybe chevrons again but maybe some feather and fan or other ripples this time.

The “What Do I Do With This Yarn?” class will cover scarves like these plus a bunch of other ideas for how to stretch a specialty yarn with yarns from your stash and how to mix yarn textures and colors.  The class is Wednesday, April 15th from 5pm until 7pm with a class fee of $30. Call (303.433.3762), email (info@wildyarns.com) or stop by to sign up!

 

 

Ravelry, you’re such a jerk!

Ok, not really but do I really need to be so inspired that I want to cast on another project or ten? Here’s the amazingness I found today:

Garden House Baby Blanket

Are you kidding me? A gorgeous garter stitch baby blanket that lets me use five colors of sock yarn and size 7 needles. I’d love to say I’ll knit it for the next person I know who has a baby but really I want it to lay across my lap while I’m binge-watching my next favorite tv show!

Spontaneous

Again, multiple colors of sock yarn and garter stitch. Ravelry, you’re killing me!

Crawl Shawl

Triangle shawls are such great comfort knitting. I’m imagining it knit from leftover bits from other projects. And, it was designed to celebrate a yarn crawl! Yay for yarn crawls!

Uptown Cable Beanie

I love making hats – either knit or crochet – and I just told someone yesterday that I’m planning to learn to crochet cables. Hello, new hat project!

Roo-Loop

An infinity scarf with pockets? What?! I want one!

Embrace Octopus Sweater

To end this post, release the kraken!

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New classes to help you design with yarn!

Are you looking for some skills that you don’t usually find in most knit or crochet classes? How about some ideas for how to put colors together or what to do with that skein of beautiful yarn that is a little different than what you’re used to working with? What about designing your own knit hat? This April brings you classes on all this and more!

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Playing with Color

On Wednesday, April 8th from 5pm-7pm I will be drawing form my former career as an art teacher to show you a little about color theory so that you have a better understanding about how you put colors together – whether it’s in your yarn projects or clothes or home! It’s a hands-on class with arts and crafts supplies to play with. You’ll be able to practice putting colors together in a way that you won’t worry about messing up! Class fee is $35, all supplies are included, and feel free to bring your favorite beverage or snack (we’re alcohol-friendly)!

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What do I do with this Yarn?

It’s happened to all of us – we bought some yarn because it was beautiful, interesting, we couldn’t live without it, etc. Now what? You can always just visit it in your stash but would you like some ideas about what to do with it to turn it into something you can wear and enjoy? I’ll give you my recipes plus pattern suggestions for working with either full skeins of special yarn or bits and pieces left over from other projects. Sometimes all you need is a little inspiration! This class meets on Wednesday, April 15th from 5pm until 7pm. Class fee is $30 and you must bring your oddball skeins of yarn!

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Design Your Own Knit Hat

Some people might say that I have a hat “problem”. Hats are my favorite things to knit, and it’s pretty rare that I don’t have a hat on the needles at all times. I’ve designed several hat patterns that are for sale on Ravelry and Craftsy. There are plenty more that I’ve made as experiments and gifts. (The picture above is a few of the hats from the hat basket at home.) If you’ve always wanted to come up with your own hat pattern or be able to whip something up without a pattern, those skills will be taught in this two-session class. We’ll be meeting on Thursdays, April 9 & 16 from 5:30pm until 7:30pm for class, and the class fee is $50 plus supplies (yarn and needles).

Check out our classes through our Classes page, and sign up for the above classes or any others by calling (303.433.3762), emailing (info@wildyarns.com), or stopping by (1227 21st St., Denver).

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Vince Vaughn and co-workers applaud you on your choice to take a class at Wild Yarns.

The Rabbit Hole of Ravelry

It’s a snowy day, and while I could be knitting I opened the patterns page of Ravelry to check out what’s ‘Hot Right Now’. It sucks me in every time!

Here are the patterns I’m drawn to today:

The Pixel Cowl by Jennifer Beaumont

Felted Yarn Bowl by Mary Beth Dollar

Slippy Cowl by Annie Modesitt

Lubushka Cowl by Irina Poludnenko

Woman’s Slipper Boots by CrochetDreamz

What’s on your Ravelry dream list for today?

A Knitting Manifesto

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In a world where knitting is no longer necessary to outfit ourselves and our families, we all knit for enjoyment. Whether our knitting pleasure manifests as gift-making for loved ones or charity, as a form of relaxation, as a chance to learn new techniques and skills, or another way, too many of us bring judgment, perfectionism, and fear of failure to this fine craft. Sometimes we direct these ugly feelings at ourselves and sometimes we direct them at other knitters. I think we should be nicer to ourselves and our fellow knitters, so I wrote a manifesto about the things that threaten to squash the joy out of knitting.

A Knitting Manifesto

a.k.a. Get the F*@k Over Yourself

  1. There’s not one correct way to knit. Knitting has been around for hundreds of years and has spread through many cultures. Anyone who thinks there is a correct method just needs to wait for time to pass or visit another culture (or knitting group that matter).
  2. Knitting isn’t done because it’s cheap. People handknit during the Depression because it was cheap. What year is it now? There are so many things about knitting that make it awesome – the opportunity to create, working with a variety of fibers, being able to give somebody a sentimental gift, participating in the knitting community, and the meditative qualities of knitting. Thinking that you are going to save money by knitting is a misconception that will clear itself up once you factor in the price of yarn plus your time.
  3. Please don’t point out every ‘mistake’ you or another knitter has made. You’re hand knitting not machine knitting. Handknits are made by humans not robots. Humans get creative. Think of the area that you previously thought of as a mistake instead as a fancy dance step that was a beautiful part of the process of your project. You’re unique and so are your creations.
  4. Don’t be so shocked when you see a guy knitting. Knitters have predominately been men throughout the majority of knitting history.
  5. Once you’ve given a knitted object as a gift, like all gifts, it could meet with disaster or never be used. It’s the fate of a gift. Let it go.
  6. It’s not necessary to knit from a pattern. Some patterns are great and help you to learn new skills or let you relax in knowing you don’t have to come up with a design for that to-die-for knitwear. Sometimes though, it’s ok to make things up as you go. Hats and scarves are great for this. Additionally people like Ann Budd and Elizabeth Zimmerman have come up with recipes for you to easily plan a project without having to follow a pattern to the letter.
  7. Cashmere isn’t the only luxury fiber. Yes, it’s soft, warm and pretty amazing but are you really that discerning in your ability to tell which fiber has been used in most of the things you wear? Of the other luxury fibers out there, some of my favorites are hand-dyed and handspun yarns as well as yarns from small mills.
  8. You don’t need to use the exact yarn called for in a pattern. Do you always do what you’re told? It’s ok to choose another yarn that has similar properties to the yarn called for in the project. Some people even use different weights and fibers of yarn. They make adjustments and it comes out ok. Or they just like the process and don’t obsess over their project looking exactly like the one in the magazine or book or website.
  9. If you do decide to knit from a pattern and want it to come out relatively similar to the pattern sample, please make a proper gauge swatch or don’t complain when it doesn’t come out right. Knitting two or three rows isn’t going to do it. Using needles other than what you will use for the project – even if they are the same size but a different material – might not cut it. Knitting a flat swatch when your project is knit in the round also makes a difference.
  10. Don’t be afraid to mess things up. It’s yarn not brain surgery. Whether you’re making it up as you go or knitting from a pattern, there’s always a chance that your project won’t meet your expectations. If a knitter frogs a project and nobody sees, does it really happen? ;)

In addition:

To the crocheters of the world,

You are wonderful! Many of us knitters of the world are sorry about the knitting bitches who look down on you and try to tell you that crochet is a lesser art than knitting. F*@k them! It’s awesome that you can make up shit as you go and aren’t afraid to improvise as needed.

To the garter stitch scarf knitters out there,

Garter stitch is beautiful! Again, sorry about the knitting bitches who give you the stink eye or dare to open their mouths to spout discouragement. We’re all knitters no matter the project or skill level, and a garter stitch scarf is like being wrapped in love.