You may remember we had a Special Arrival for whom I had great pleasure in making in a baby blanket. Well, earlier this year we had Special Arrival 2. A dilemma: another large baby blanket? They already have one… So this time I went for a smaller cot size blanket.
Yet another Anne Hanson pattern, this one is called Sky Ladder. What was especially pleasing: I had enough of the same yarn left over the Special Arrival 2 has a cot blanket in the same yarn and colourway as his brother. Which is good because he’s an especially nice one.
Still reporting on last year’s knitting. This was a pair of projects for my sister which provided a bit of a learning opportunity for me.
She bought the yarn – always a good beginning, and made a good choice: Rowan felted tweed. It’s a cashmere/alpaca/nylon blend and really nice to knit with. Very soft and cosy. Just right for a scarf/hat combo.
The scarf pattern Peu do Pluie by Anne Hanson, already in my libray was a good choice and worked well. My sister had chosen two co-ordinating colours, so just a little of one with the main body of the scarf with the other.
The hat: Woolly Wormhead’s Elourne, one I’d made before. The complicating factor was that this hat pattern calls for much thicker yarn. But I had the perfect solution: use a strand of each colour to create a thicker yarn and combine the two colours without trying to combine different colours in different parts of the pattern which I suspected wouldn’t work that well. And it did work. It looked nice. But it was itchy. Turns out any fibre that has some courser strands in it has this potential, and I think holding it double and at a fairly tight gauge just makes the fibres pop a bit, giving extra itch.
But it’s ok, she can wear it when it’s really cold…
When I decided I wanted to make a cardigan for Myrtle I knew she would have to be fundamentally involved in all the choices we would make along the way about the finished product. I had a pattern in mind that she was easily persuaded to; the wee wildflower cardigan by Alana Dakos and she was keen I spun the wool for her. After spinning a skein of yarn from a Portland fleece I realised there was no way she would ever wear anything made from that. To be honest I wouldn’t want to wear it next to my skin either. It was course and itchy, quite like Shetland. It’ll probably be good and hardwearing for accessories, but definitely not something from which to make a cardigan.
So instead I bought some undyed merino in a fingering weight and together we dyed it. Myrtle is very clear on her colour preferences. They are quite different to mine. But I wasn’t going to be wearing this cardigan. So purple and pink it was. I tried a new method to get a variegated yarn this time, adding small amounts of pink and purple through the dyeing process to get a more subtly variegated yarn than I have achieved previously. I was quite pleased with the result, and more importantly so was Myrtle.
Which just left knitting it. The pattern was fun, and mostly straightforward. The pockets were interesting to make and make for a really pretty detail. I did end up making four sleeves though. Not sure whether there was an error in my gauge (I did swatch and the rest of the cardigan came out right so that was a bit odd) but each sleeve only took about a day so it wasn’t a big problem. On first try Myrtle didn’t seem very sure but she has since worn it loads. Happy all round.
She was initially quite a reluctant model..
But then started enjoying herself a bit more. Wow she’s looking grown all big.