A knitting explosion

The problem with knitting a chunky coat is that your wrists get tired.  Here’s where I’ve got up to with my Clasica Coat:

That’s the back and left front, in the luscious cuddly softness of Zealana’s Tui.  I’m working my way up the right front now.

To prevent RSI, I have had to split this project between other less strenuous-on-the-wrists knitting.  All those K2 and K3 togs and M6 in one stitches in a chunky yarn are making this project a more kinetic-than-usual knit.  After a couple of hours’ knitting this, my wrists really ache.

The act of finding ‘relief’ projects has created a bit of a knitting fever.  I don’t know if I’ve ever had so many projects on the go at once!  And I keep finding more I want to do…

So I’ve also started a vest for Eric:

This is Bing, from the Spring 2010 issue of Verena Knitting.  I’ve modified it because having cables that go all the way across the vest was making it feel too heavy feeling.  I’ve left the four middle cables and kept the rest in stocking stitch.  This is a lovely little knit, and I finished the back yesterday.  But even then, it wasn’t quite doing it. 

My current obsession with tweed and texture continues to haunt me.  Yesterday, I spent much of the day’s free time playing around with this:

It’s a swatch for a pullover I’m planning.  This is Jamieson & Smith 2 ply jumper weight.  It’s soooo nice.  Purrr….  it’s got such a lively, interesting handle, I just love knitting it.  Even though it’s fingering weight, and I’m using tiny needles.  Not my normal gig! 

I’m just not quite sure if the style I originally had in mind will suit the yarn though.  I was going to copy a pullover I bought a few years back, but have since found annoyingly too short even though I like the general style.  I was going to knit myself another in a longer length.    

J&S yarn is something special.  Shetland wool, traditionally woollen spun.  This heritage wool has a wonderful bounce and stretch.  There is less drape to it than some of the ‘modern’ spun yarns floating around.  I think I shall have to do a bit  more research on Ravelry, and have a look at what others have knitted in this yarn to figure out the project that will show this unique yarn off in the best light. 

As you can see, I’m thinking cables… the question is, how many?  And should it be a vest or a pullover?  I think the green might be a bit too much for an entire  pullover.  It’s a gorgeous green though.  It reminds me of the sea.

Then, from the back of my yarn cupboard, I heard a wee tweedy voice calling me… it was the Naturally Aran Tweed I acquired at the beginning of Autumn.  It told me sternly to make it into a hat.  Today, if you please! 

It’s not true tweed.  It’s 95% merino, two singles of heathered colours plied together and spun into an entrancing forest of green.  But it looks like tweed, so I guess that’s why they called it that.  The photo does not do it justice.  This green is very hard to photograph.  Even the eye can’t get a fix on it.  Up close, the light catches all the green sparkles in it, but from a distance, it looks dark, olive green.

The hat is nearly done.  It’s a very quick knit in worsted (aran) weight yarn.  It’s Felicity, a free pattern from Wanett Clyde, who has kindly loaded it on to Ravelry.  Do look up the other completed projects in this pattern before you try it yourself – I found it very helpful as the original pattern is probably on the small side for most.  I’m using my Addi Turbo needles on this project, and it is really helping to make the knitting go faster.  I love my Addis.  I think I should make plottings to find more in different sizes…

I’m also currently researching for a pattern I want to knit from the Sandra knitting magazine.  It’s a European magazine, and I guess the English translation isn’t as good as it could be.  It’s a little top-down dress that’s knitted in the round.  For my niece.  Very cute:

The raglan instructions are unclear though.  I’m not familiar enough with top-down yet to know how to do this without instructions.  But I found Hetty, a free pattern from Found in the Sea designs, the creation of fellow NZ’er Sarah Wright, also on Ravelry.  Hetty is a very pretty little top-down dress in a reasonably similar style.  So I shall have a look at this and work out my plan of action for starting this dress in the next couple of days.

And lastly, Eric looked at me knitting my hat this morning and asked “Who is that hat for?”  To which I sheepishly replied “Me…”.  And in the silence that followed, I guiltily pulled out from under the pile of yarn beside me the green possum which he’s earmarked for a hat for himself, and said “But this is what I’m doing for you next!”  Poor sausage.

So my sofa looks like a yarn bomb has gone off on it, and at the same time I feel like I wish I could finish something.  I will, but you know what it’s like when you’re on the last home stretch?  It seems to take forever… 

Just to prove to you that I do finish what I start, here’s the finished Garden Jumper:

It’s a little on the short side, even though the garment is the exact size as the schematic in the pattern, and I’ve knitted it in my usual size (well, the choice was 36 or 38, and I thought 36 might be better).  I had a pouty evening when I put the sweater on for the first time and realised that for my sweater to fit like the model in the magazine, I’d have had to knit this project two sizes larger than normal!  :-\   But alpaca grows after knitting, and once it has finished its growing, I’m fairly sure I shall be happy with it.   She says hopefully.

Hope you’re having a good week. 🙂

5 thoughts on “A knitting explosion

  1. Your Classica is looking fabulous! This is a pattern I have long fancied making if I encounter the right yarn and think perhaps your Tui is what I need. I plan to make an excursion to Knit World in Henderson during the school term break to see if they have any – we are so short of yarn stores in North Shore City! I love possum yarns and really want to have a play with the Zealana yarns. How snuggly your jacket will be when it is finished. Have our possum trap set because our magnolias are getting ready to flower and they seem to find the buds irresistible. Once we get to the shortest day and the magnolias come into flower I always feel we are on the path to summer – even though July is the coldest month.

    1. Thank you! I’m really pleased with how it’s going too. You’ll be sure to hear all about it when it’s done. I’m anxious to finish it as soon as possible, otherwise winter will be over before I get to wear it! Good luck with trapping those pesky possums and keeping your magnolias to enjoy. And I do hope you manage to find some Zealana at Knit World in Henderson! (Might be worth ringing ahead to save disappointment. Just in case. You could always mail-order if not. hehe.)

    2. Hello again! I thought I’d let you know I found out today where you can buy Zealana in Auckland – at Mishi and Masco’s! Unfortunately, Knitworld only stocks Zealana in its Christchurch and Wellington stores, although you can always buy it from them mail-order of course.

  2. Hi just found your blog and all the useful info on NZ wool – I’m hopefuly opening a small haberdashery in Auckland and want to stock the more unusual wool from small produces so I can’t wait to look through all the sites you have suggested.
    Love the colour of the coat you are knitting it looks so warm as I sit here with cold toes tonight.
    Thank You Helen

    1. Hello! I’m glad you have found my blog useful. It would be wonderful to see more of these small suppliers stocked in yarn stores. Good luck with your preparations! I hear that Auckland needs more yarn stores, so I’m sure you’ll be a welcome addition.

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