The latest What I’m Knitting Wednesday adventure features FOs of cowls and WIPs of coasters and alpacas
It feels like ages since I’ve written a What I’m Knitting Wednesday post! I was going to try to publish this last Wednesday, but with my eBook cover contest going on last week, I thought that might just push this poor little website into overdrive.
So this week it is!
Yarns and Patterns Used in This Article
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I don’t have much on my needles actually (more on that in a minute), but I do have several FOs.
First, here is the cowl I made for my friend Karen. I might even wind up sending this to her sometime this century.
I feel a little bad now for being less than 100% complementary toward the Lion Brand Homespun I used for this beautiful cowl. After I finished the cabled band for the hood portion, I found knitting with the yarn delightful. As long as you use a large enough set of not-too-pointy needles, Homespun is a great yarn. It even felt pleasantly plush beneath my fingers.
(While I will probably never recommend it for cabling, that hardly means it’s useless!)
Second, here’s my Peace Cowl.
So this cowl wound up far less like a skinny or chunky cowl and far more like an infinity scarf. Not that I’m complaining; Knit Picks Aloft is an absolute dream. This may be the softest and most heavenly yarn I’ve ever felt. Since I finished knitting it, I’ve worn this cowl almost every day.
And lastly, this is a little prayer cloth I whipped up for a young man named Luis who recently entered Basic Training. On New Year’s Eve, his family held a farewell party for him, and I handed this cloth to him right after we arrived. I hope it brings him much comfort over the next several months.
Now, let’s get to what I’m actually knitting!
Work in Progress 1: the Coaster
Let’s talk a little about this coaster.
First, I used this pattern.
It’s an adorable pattern and not at all difficult to knit.
Now you might notice that my “turtle” is missing a few things. Like a head, or legs. Right now, I’m basically weighing my options.
I knitted most of this coaster with Darn Good Yarn’s Single-Ply Hemp Yarn. Have any of you ever knitted with hemp yarn? I’ll be honest with you, here. It feels like twine.
I soaked the yarn in water and gave it a washing, as I read that this was one way you can soften hemp yarn. Then I threw it into the clothes dryer in a pillowcase, having heard that this was also a way to soften hemp yarn.
The scary thing is that I think these things did actually make the yarn less stiff. But it still felt like twine.
After I finished knitting the part you see here, I used my steam iron to block it, wondering if that might make it even a little softer. (I don’t know why I bothered, honestly — coasters don’t really need to be soft!) And I think it did make it a bit softer.
But this yarn will never, ever be soft.
And for coasters that’s totally fine. I’m just not totally sure I want to knit more of this.
Now, this pattern has a crochet version as well. And I’m actually considering busting out a crochet hook and attempting to finish this turtle (and make it some siblings for a set). I’m thinking (hoping!) that crocheting this yarn might be more pleasant than knitting it.
I’ll keep you posted!
I purchased a worsted weight ball of hemp yarn as well, and I’m still trying to decide what I’ll make with it. I had considered a washcloth, but I’m not sold on a washcloth with this yarn. A scrubby or dishcloth might work, though.
Work in Progress 2: the Alpaca
One final work in progress is this alpaca.
I should probably call this Frankelpaca at the moment since it’s still in pieces.
I’m using Hikoo Caribou from Maker’s Mercantile, an online shop. (In a few days I’ll tell you more about this shop — it really impressed me!) The non-fuzzy yarn is a simple acrylic, also from Maker’s Mercantile, called Schoeller-Stahl Hit. The adorable pattern is Flounce the Fluffy Alpaca.
Knitting with Caribou yarn is tricky because it is hard, if not impossible, to keep track of stitches. I can barely count stitches on the needle with this fluffy stuff. Counting rows is an exercise in futility.
Since there is absolutely no good way to keep track of rows, I’ve been eyeballing instead. So this alpaca’s neck or body might be a little shorter (or maybe even longer, I guess, I don’t even know) than intended in the pattern. That’s okay. So far this little guy looks pretty cute.
All I have to do is knit the tail, attach all the appendages, and embroider a face. Then I need to knit another (because OF COURSE both my daughters insist on receiving one).
After that, I’ll need to find a new portable project. During three evenings a week, I am out of the house for my younger daughter’s swim team practices. And I like to knit while watching her swim. I might have to dig through my travel pattern article and get some ideas!
And now it’s show and tell time, folks! So what is on your needles this week? Let me know in the comments what you’re knitting or crocheting, and offer photos if you have them.