Thursday, February 21, 2008

Is it almost March already?

Wow, time flies when you're not paying attention. It wouldn't do to let February pass without notice, so here we go:
While we might not have been posting, we here at Through the Back Loop have not been idle. No siree, we've been knitting up a storm of cables, socks, sweaters and hats. I finished my designed-on-the-fly cabled socks a few days ago and am happy to report that they are awesome. I realize that they're not the most exciting sock to look at, but I made them up myself and they fit perfectly. They're worked top-down over 72 sts on 2mm bamboo dpns at something like 9sts/inch. In retrospect, I think it would have been nice to have the cable travel down the length of the foot, but I'm still happy with how they turned out. The yarn is fabulous! It's nice to work with and knits up nicley and keeps my toes cosy on the chilly walk to work. I'd like to get my grubby little hands on a skein of the green colourway in the near future.

My toes taken care of, it was time to consider something to keep the frost off my ears. A Syncopated Cap from Interweave Knits Summer 2007 fit the bill. One skein of Artyarns Supermerino and half a skein of navy On Your Toes later, we have a hat. I really liked knitting this - it was a fast knit that held my attention and I'm pleased with the results. I'm saving this one for next winter- not because my ears don't need some woolly love know, they do, but because it makes me look silly. This is not the fault of the hat or the designer, it's because this style of hat looks best on someone with longer hair. By next winter my hair will be grown out (unless I snap and cut it off after trying to wrestle it into some semblance of a style) and my syncopated cap will be put to the test. Until then, it rests in the chest.

After a few months of knitting nothing but accessories, I felt I needed something a little more substantial. I've been hesitant to start a new sweater project for a while. I like sweaters - I wear them all the time. I love snuggling into a warm woolly something on a cold day. I like the idea of choosing the colour, the style and the fit. It's not the expense of the yarn or the time involved that holds me back, it's the fear of "what if I hate it. What if I get it done and it doesn't fit?".I had lost my sweater mojo. I've had my eye on the Central Park Hoodie since it's debut in the Fall 2006 edition of Knitscene. I'm pretty sure almost everyone in knitland has made of these or knows someone who has. I stalked it on Ravelry. I read the discussions, tips and pointers. I bought some yarn. I knit my swatch and cast on. I had a finished sweater 10 days later. I've worn it a couple of time and I'm glad I knit it. It's just what I wanted - a cosy, warm cardigan that looks good with jeans. It fits me pretty well - I lengthened the body by two inches and for once didn't have to add any length to the arms. I had read more than one post on Ravelry remarking on the length of the sleeves and all I can say is, they're just right for my monkey arms. Cold wrists are not an issue with this sweater. It was my first encounter with Cascade 220. It was the yarn of choice for most of the CPHs on Ravelry, so I figured why not? It's nice alternative to Patons Classic and the colours are great (not that you can tell in the photos. The close up of the cable is a truer representation of the colour than the pic on the left. Oh to have a lighting studio. . .). A quick soak in some Eucalan and some locking took care of any unevenness. Now that I've finished one sweater, I want to knit another one. But what kind? Another warm and woolly, or something more summery? Both? What's a knitter to do?

In the mean time, while I struggle with my sweater dilemma, I cast on for a scarf. It's pretty and easy and keeps my hands occupied while my I consider my sweatery options. Remember my Fleece Artist Woollie Silk hat kit? Well, the hat didn't make it. I just couldn't deal with the meters of stockingette stitch and frogged it halfway through. Instead, it's on it's on it's way to becoming a loevly little star-stitch scarf. You can't really see it in the photo, but the stich is quite nice. The pattern is called "Holding Hands, Feeding Ducks" - I found it while cruising around on Ravelry for nothing in particular. Most of the others were knit in Malabrigo, but I thought this would work as well as anything else. So far so good!