Thursday, February 24, 2011

Signs of Spring

Daffodil shoots are poking through the mulch; winter won't last forever! Actually, the weather has been very agreeable the last two weeks. Any winter day that doesn't involve shoveling snow is a good day!

Well, since this is, in part, rumored to be a knitting blog, I guess I should report what's on the needles. The current big project is a sweater for afghans for Afghans. The deadline I was hoping to meet has come and gone, but part 2 of the youth campaign isn't due until late April. Surely I can knit two sleeves in two months. (I know, don't call me Shirley.) Probably the biggest impediment to completion is the bulkiness involved, since the sweater is seamless. It's become a bit of a pain to carry around, so I usually only work on it at home.

The other project OTN is a gianormous Cotton-Ease swatch. I've always liked Cotton-Ease, but the colors that have been available locally since its reintroduction have been rather uninspiring (pastel earth tones - REALLY?). But the last time I was at Michaels, I spotted, way down on the bottom row, skeins of Cotton-Ease in "Cherry," a "deep, bold red" according to the Lion Brand website. So I used my handy dandy coupon to purchase one skein to try. Using my Denise needles, since that's what I would be using to knit a sweater from the stuff, I cast on 30 stitches on a US#9. After a few rows of garter stitch for curl prevention, I continued in stockinette for about 4 1/2 inches. Then I switched to US#8 tips, did another garter ridge, stockinette for 4 1/2 inches, lather, rinse, repeat down to US#5. The next half of the swatch will be reversing the needle size order, while knitting in the round. When that's done, I will check and record my gauge on all of the sections, then wash and dry the swatch exactly the way I plan to launder the garment. Finally, after removing it from the dryer, I'll recheck my gauge and see how the knitted fabric fared in the laundry. If, after all that, I like what I see, it will be time to choose a pattern and find a good price on the yarn.

Next time, I'll talk about what's on my hooks these days; you won't want to miss it! 8-)


Bev said...

wow! daffodils already? it may be a while before we see them here!!

and yes, it must be the whole state thinks that pastel earth tones are what we're all dreaming about knitting with -- but NOT!! should be fun to see that bright cherry swatch

JelliDonut said...

Hey, don't jinx it for us! I live in Lakewood too and if I don't see another snowflake this year I will be happy. Would love to see some rain, however.

And yeah, I'm going to play the Powerball this week. I might be on a roll!