Friday, October 26, 2007

Playing with colours

As you may have figured out by now, I am a sucker for pretty colours. I am NOT by any stretch of the imagination an artist or even knowledgeable about colours and how to use them or put them together in a pleasing fashion. I just like to look at them. Someday, I would love to be able to be creative in assembling colours together to create beautiful projects such as this blanket or this quilt or this yarn, but for now I will have to make do with taking what other people have created/designed and appropriating it for my own use.

Which brings me to my next knitting project. The Modern Quilt Wrap from Folk Style. When I saw this pattern featured on Knitting Daily, I fell absolutely head over heels. The colours! The drapeyness! The Cracksilk Haze! Now, I've never actually worked with Kidsilk Haze (except as an accent stripe in my ill-fated first sweater that didn't work out and which we will not speak of now), but it has definitely been on my list-of-things-to-try for a long time, I was just waiting for the "right" project (I've also had my eye on this Trinket scarf for a long time, it's just expensive as a kit and also from across the pond (not that that's stopped me before of course), and also I have trouble deciding on colours). At first I thought "9 skeins? Holy crap that's expensive". But then I thought "Hey wait, I don't have to knit Christmas presents for a certain person (or his mother) this year, why not buy MYSELF yarn instead?" And several weeks and several trips to the LYS and several eBay purchases later, all the required yarn had been assembled.


Kidsilk Haze_02

Kidsilk Haze_05

I've replaced a couple of the colours with ones that I already had in the stash (substituting Pearl for Drab and Candy Girl for Blushes), but I don't think it makes too much of a difference to the final pattern except for making it a bit brighter (brighter is better, yay!).

I started knitting the first squares while watching the Red Sox in the ALCS, and it was VERY slow going at first. The yarn is so fine and slippery that it made joining new colours and weaving in ends difficult. And because this project generates so many dangling ends, I decided to weave the yarn in as I went, following this tutorial. Which in turn meant that I had to learn to knit with the yarn in my right hand (I normally knit Continental). Which slowed things down even more.

Because there was a learning curve associated with this project, I had to knit the first 4 squares twice. Here's my second attempt, which is actually sort of square like it should be:

Modern Quilt Wrap Blocks 1-4

Here are blocks 1-6:

Modern Quilt Wrap Blocks 1-6

I've actually knit up to block 9 now, but I don't have a photo (perhaps this weekend when I can get outside with it during daylight hours). Here's how long it's taken me to knit all these squares (Pardonnez the super-crap Photoshopping):

Modern Quilt Wrap Blocks 1-6_mod

3 playoff games, 9 blocks. Each "large" block is taking me around 2 hours to knit. There are 36 of these blocks in the wrap. Do the math! This will take me a while to finish (but I want it now! I want to wear it this winter!), but I think it will definitely be worth it in the end. Provided that the mohair around my neck doesn't drive me absolutely batshit crazy. The bra test resulted in a bit of itching, but nothing too horrible. Tolerable, methinks. =)


Karen said...

Oh my gosh! I totally fell in love with that pattern too! But I've been holding back because I've worked with the kidsilk haze before, and found myself getting irritated with it before long. But your squares really do look great, and it's making me want to make one too. I'm thinking of doing some yarn substituting and making my own version; maybe something in more neutral colours.

Too bad the World Series didn't go a few games more, but I suppose that with football season in full swing, there's still sports to watch while knitting! : D

Adrienne said...

Were you irritated by the KSH because it's so fine and slippery, or because of the mohair? I've seen some wraps out there knit using other yarns, and they all look really great. I think the important thing is getting a colour combo that you like. =)

I was a little disappointed that the World Series only went to 4 games (too one-sided, it seemed), but at least the Sox won! And yeah, there's still plenty of football left in the year. =)

Karen said...

Actually, both of those reasons :D I generally don't like working with things at lace weight because of how fine and slippy it is. The last time I used KSH was to knit that diamond pattern shawl for my mom that had a mistake in the pattern, and frogging it was terrible because of the mohair.

I was thinking of substituting the KSH with Palette from Knit Picks in a bunch of their 'heather' colours. But I still have a lot of UFOs to work on that I should probably get to first, and a lot more stash to bust before I get to it. It's just that the exchange rate is in my favour for once, so I was thinking of taking advantage of that. The debate continues...

Adrienne said...

Oh yes, the exchange rate! Isn't that the craziest thing? I will be a very bad influence and say that yes, absolutely you should take advantage! =P

I remember your KSH shawl and all the trouble you were having with it. In this case, the fact that the yarn is so sticky works to my advantage somewhat, since this project generates so many ENDS. I have been very very paranoid and have been leaving very long tails and have been weaving in like crazy, and the stickiness reassures me somewhat (but not completely!) that the whole thing won't spontaneously and disastrously unravel itself. =)