Wednesday, May 25, 2016

my noncho

Nope. It's not a poncho. Just don't call it a poncho.
Last month, the confluence of a gift of beautiful yarn from Barcelona, a craving for some mindless knitting,  desire of a wrap-like garment that was secured on the shoulder but wasn't a big blanket thing (see my links at the end)--and a couple of long uninterrupted knitting opps all came together.
I didn't achieve ombre -you need to actually blend the changing colors to make that happen- but I'm pleased enough with my colorblocking  softened by carrying a strand of laceweight merino along through three different skeins of DK weight alpaca.
The button!  Also a from- Barcelona gift. It's just for decoration. A finishing touch. Helps me to find the right orientation when flinging it over your head. I want to be all je ne sais quois- not some dork lost  in my noncho trying to find the front end up, as I toss it on.
I felt like I had a knitting success but I wasn't sure I had a style success until Yliana commented that if I couldn't find it around the house, it might be because she stops by and sneaks it out to wear it next fall, when the weather gets cool. Sweet words from my sometime-skeptical-of -the-knits 21 year old photo helper, right?

Details-  3 skeins of alpaca DK weight (each approx 230 yards) and 1 skein of Anzula Wash My Lace laceweight merino.  Knit on size 10.5 US needles, in a big rectangle, with a 3" border of beaded rib on each end, and a 4 stitch border on the long edges. After blocking, about 24" x 55"-ish, folded in half and sewn on one edge, leaving  a 12" opening. I decided the reverse stockinette side had a more woven look so I called it the right side.

If you want to knit one, I don't think the dimensions are all that strict, nor the stitch pattern you choose. You could buy some inexpensive jersey fabric and make a mockup to see what size works for you. I just wouldn't  want the knit fabric too loose, or saggy- or too dense and stiff.  Go for it!

I'm not sure I have this concept entirely out of my system! Check out L'Enveloppe , Petal Capelet,
The llama II, Gale and if I can find that saved search with other not-quite-sweaters/not-quite-shawls, poncho-like garments, I'll share that too.....

PS Photos by the entry to Knit New Haven, my LYS. 

Sunday, May 01, 2016

'tis the season! CT Sheep & Wool Festival

It's that time of year, to see all our favorite fuzzy faces and appreciate their fiber. For us, the Ct Sheep and Wool festival starts the spring and fair season. It's just a teeny little fiber festival, a mere smidge of a gathering. But it means winter is done.
My report:  Purple is big this year, no surprise there. The vendors here are smaller farms and local or regional dyers. I always admire  Tidal Yarns skeins. I love her patterns, too. There was a pullover sample at her booth I spent some time admiring *. You know how you look and think "ooh nice" but then the next day you're thinking " oooh nice and I really want to knit's stuck in my head....". Even though I've got my knitting pretty well planned out for the short term.  Note to self: follow her to another fair and do it.
There was some herding, of sheep.  And of a four year old.
My fave thing this year was Dancing Stick Man, and the dude who pulled the string as he played banjo.
The banjo playing was at one of our fave booths too- old timey stuff including what sister Lulu, who joined the fair-going expedition, called folk art and little spirit jugs. Many had faces on them, or tiny paintings.  You'll find a couple in our flower garden, if it ever gets warm enough to plant.
There was also  the Wearing of the Amazing Knits, Folks in Renaissance Clothes Doing Impossibly Intricate Needlework, Spinning In Group Formation, Shearing Demos and Really Good Buttons, along with all of the above. Want my 2¢ Get out to some up and coming fairs .
- Maryland Sheep and Wool  May 7 & 8  --the big mama of east coast spring festivals

- Shepherds Harvest in Minnesota May 13-15 -  worth the trip from wherever you are

- New Hampshire Sheep & Woool Festival - May 14 & 15 - bring a sweater! it's in the woods- my memory of my two visits to this one is brrrrrr! and also- beautiful yarns & sheep

- Massachusetts Sheep and Woolcraft Fair May 28 & 29th-- super charming

Taking a curtsy before we leave. Hope to catch you sipping lemonade and watching the sheep smile back sometime soon.

Just for funs : although I rarely miss a year of this festival, I sometimes skip blogging about it. oops! my first visit to this festival 11 years ago , back when my blog was a secret and I was purposefully posting small not terribly well made photos, to keep it separate from my professional commercial work (why? insanity??!!) . And also another,  sunshiney  lovely year there, on the blog seven years ago.

* so this pullover? It was worsted or DK weight looking, nice deep raglan sleeves, boxy cut, slightly scooped neck and an inset pocket (with contrast lining, I just love that)  on one side of the lower front. It was shown with color blocking near the lower quarter of the body but it'd be charming solid....