A new home for my yarn

yarn3 I have a confession to make; up until last week my stash was homeless. It’s been only around 5 years since I started taking knitting more seriously, and back in the day I only had the odd ball of (acrylic) yarn and acouple of needles lying around. It was hard to imagine I would ever buy more yarn than I could use up immediately. Boy, was I naive. yarn1

In contrast to my stash, which is still pretty young, I’ve always been quite fanatic about buying books. The book buying has always been at a speed that I could not possible keep up with, reading wise. Just the pure joy of buying a new book, leafing through it in the book shop, occasionally smelling it (yes I do that), and then proudly storing it away in your book case (in alphabetical order of course). If I’d stop buying books nows, I’d probably could happily read on a couple of years.

yarn4 And now the same has happened with yarn. The squishing, selecting colours, and maybe occasionally smelling it (yes I do that). Especially sock yarn is a weakness for me, it’s usually just one or two skeins so it is easily bought. And I do love my sock yarn stash so much (picture above is just the sock yarn)! yarn2

When I started to get more into knitting, I started putting my yarn and materials in cardboard boxes or bags. The stash was spread all over the house and there was no order in it whatsoever. As I said, my yarn was homeless. Lately however the chaos of the boxes and bags lying around everywhere and the lack of order started to annoy me to no end. So now I’ve proudly created a home for it in the form of drawers in a dresser. And I have to say it is such a relief to easily find things!

How about you, do you have a system for organising your stash?

New Project, New Girl

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My current number of works in progress is below 5, which in my world means that it is perfectly acceptable to cast on something new. As you might remember from my top 5 favourite skirt patterns I’ve been dying to cast on the New Girl skirt. And since the weather is still too hot for proper winter knits the timing seems perfect.

Pattern: New Girl
Yarn: Schoppel Wolle Zauberball Stärke 6 in Dottergelb & Petrol

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You might think dark green and yellow is a bit of an odd colour combination, and I fully agree. Somehow when I purchased this yarn a while back I thought this a very logical combination, but now I don’t see it anymore. But since it made sense to me at one point, I’m sure it will come back. The green is knitting up nicely so far, although the yarn is a bit too splitty for my taste.

As for the pattern, it’s the perfect mindless tv knit and it has been great for train and car travel. I’m nearing the bit where I have to start thinking about the pockets, but until then it’s just plain old stockinette stitch. Just what I needed after the constant counting and thinking required for my Stormborn shawl.

Stormborn

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It’s done, it’s done! Yesterday I finished the Stormborn shawl from the Game of Thrones Mystery Knit Along and I am so pleased with it!

Yarn: Tibetan Cloud Fingering
Pattern: Stormborn Shawl

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Since this was a mystery knit along I didn’t know what the pattern would be, and I totally lucked out with my yarn colour choice. The green suits the dragon scales very well and in general I love the colour. After a wash and a block the yarn is also very soft. The only problem I had with it was that the thread thickness seems to vary quite a lot, and although that in itself isn’t so much of a problem, the fact that the yarn broke on me twice in the thin parts is. Both times it gave me a mini heart-attack, and in general I prefer my knitting without any kind of heart attack. I wasn’t sure how much yarn I would need for the shawl, and despite it’s name the weight does not seem to be fingering. So of the two skeins (a whopping 900 meters, 100 grams) that I bought I still have 43 grams left. Which is more than enough to do another project!

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The pattern is great as well, it’s interesting enough to keep you motivated up until the end, but repetitive enough to not have to constantly rip back because of a counting mistake. Plus the end result is huuuge, and I’m all for huge shawls. And I can totally picture Daenerys rocking this, of the House Targaryen, the First of Her Name, the Unburnt, Queen of Meereen, Queen of the Andals and the Rhoynar and the First Men etc. etc. etc.

On a hot Summer day

So last week we had some extreme rainy weather, which got me all excited for fall and all kinds of warm knitting adventures. I nearly cast on a warm sweater but managed to resist. However I failed to inhibit myself when it came to fall inspired yarn shopping. And boy, was I wrong about the weather!

Today temperatures are reaching up to 34ºC, and it doesn’t look like it will cool down much in the next couple of weeks. So it was a little odd receiving parcels full of knitting stuff. Nevertheless I’m still very excited about my purchases, although I’m afraid some of them will have to wait receiving my full love and attention until my overall state of being is less melting.

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What did I buy exactly? First of all I’ve been eyeing this pattern book by Ann Kingstone for a while now. The designs are breathtaking (and as the name already suggests) stranded knits. One of my favourite designs in here must be the William sweater. I can really recommend checking out this book!

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Yarn-wise I’ve been wanting to buy something to make the Ginny’s owl cardigan from the unofficial Harry Potter knits magazine. If you’re anything like me the idea of a combination between Harry Potter and knitting will make your heart beat a little bit faster. I adore this shade of purple (30 Damson) from Rowan Pure Wool DK, I think it will suit the pattern well!

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Malabrigo
Lastly, I figured you can never have too much shawl knitting yarn, right? (RIGHT?!) The lovely purple-ish skein is from Araucania Botany Lace and the two coral coloured skeins are Malabrigo Silky Merino. I don’t have an exact project in mind for these yet, although I have some vague ideas. I’m of course always open to suggestions 🙂

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to sit in the fridge.

 

Back to reality

I’ve had two lovely and relaxing weeks of vacation and it is with a little bit of sadness that I’ve gone back to work, back to reality. First I enjoyed a relaxing week in France, after which I went to Ireland for a little more active holiday. And I’ve drawn some important knitting conclusions while I was away!

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First of all apparently I can knit in the car without getting car sick! For someone that already gets car sick from reading too many road signs this is an amazing discovery. Truth be told I only tried knitting hexipuffs, as I thought it’d be less likely getting car sick with an easy and memorised pattern. Mainly because of the long drive to France this resulted in 13 happy little puffs finished and my grand total now stands at 24 puffs!

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My second grand conclusions is that I am still too chicken to carry knitting in my hand luggage. I’ve read some stories online of people who had no problems at all with getting their knitting on a plane, but I am still left with the irrational fear that airport security will look at me disapprovingly while ripping out a beautiful piece of knitting, after which they will dramatically snap my beautiful knitting needles in half whilst laughing maniacally. This meant that for my second trip, for which only hand luggage was booked, I was to be without knitting. In other words, a week without sadly making any progress on any of my projects. Which doesn’t mean it wasn’t an amazing week, the beauty of Dublin and the Irish countryside left me speechless at times.

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As for the socks I was contemplating about whether they should be frogged or not, I have come to a conclusion. They will be frogged and I am sure the yarn will make another pair of beautiful socks. The little voice in my head kept on complaining that I would not be happy with these socks and the chances of me eventually finishing these was becoming smaller and smaller. In the end I think I made the right decisions, although it not being an easy one.

GotShawlFrance

So you might be thinking that 13 small hexipuffs and half a socks that will be frogged is not much knitting in two weeks. Luckily I’ve also been making some progress on the Game of Thrones Mystery Knit Along shawl, for which I am probably the last of the participants that has not finished this yet. But I won’t despair! The pattern is so pretty and the yarn I’m using (which I bought on yarn shop day) is a perfect colour for the dragon scale like look. Although it is not really a mystery anymore I’ll try to first make a bit more progress before posting a proper picture, but I promise it’s gonna be good. Almost done with clue 3 now and with 6 clues in total this can only mean that I am half way-ish. Plus it felt pretty epic when the weather of France decided it was time for some rain and I could work on the shawl with a sea view.

Meanwhile back in the Netherlands it has been raining for two days straight, and I’m not even exaggerating, there has literally not been one minute without rain for two days. This has made my hands itching to make something warm and wintery. However I must.. resist.. casting on.. wintery stuf.. because according to the weather report we will hop back into summer this friday.