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Monday, June 16, 2008

Spin to knit

I got a lot of spinning done at the weekend. Sunday started off just perfect with breakfast and spinning outside on the baloney.

Breakfast

This is the first jam out of jar #2 of the strawberry jam I made last year. It didn't really 'jam' so it's basically strawberries in thick goo but the taste is fabulous. When I get to jam making this year I think I'll take guidance from the boyfriend's Readers Digest "Cookery Year" as his blackberry jelly (made to their spec) set like anything.

The plying has been much more straightforward since I got the lazy [cheaps]kate out of storage.

Spinning on a Sunday morning

It's just a shoebox with a knitting needle and a cardboard tube but it works. I can still even keep my shoes in it when it's not in use.

Spinning on a Sunday morning

The trick with Navajo plying is not to let the two plies from the loop twist together before the third is also ready and not to let the twist travel up so far that you can't bring the next loop through. I've found that holding the yarn with two or three fingers stuck through the loop helps with both of these.

Spinning on a Sunday morning

Here you can just see the place (right at the bottom of the photo) where one loop ends and the next begins. It's almost invisible when you're actually knitting with the yarn.

Deciding what to knit with my yarn has been really tricky. There's no ball band with handy hints about needle size and stitch and row gauge and (obviously) no-one else on Ravelry who has knit with the yarn.

Of course I could just dive in there (as usual) and knit a hat wth all the drape of a pith helmet or a scarf that could be used as a neck brace (I tend towards too tight rather than too loose gauge as the lesser of two weevils) but I decided that my hand-spun deserved better and set about swatching.

My first attempt was on 5mm needles (see above). Luckily I only got 5 stitches into the longtail cast on before realising just how absurd this was.

Spinning on a Sunday morning

Spinning on a Sunday morning

I jumped up a couple of needle sizes and swatched on 6.5mm and 7mm needles in stocking stitch with a moss stitch border and on 8mm needles in stocking stitch followed by lace. I'm leaning towards the idea of a chunky lace pattern wrap or cardigan both to maximise the amount of knitting I can get from the yardage and because lace will be more forgiving to inconsistencies in thickness than plain stocking stitch. Luckily I love knitting lace so everyone's a winner!

1 comment:

Moggle said...

It looks so lovely knitted up - it looked even better in person :-)
I'm now thinking of making another Koolhaas with my Biffle