Saturday, January 6, 2007

Scarf Song

Let's talk scarves. As I wrote in my first entry, my first knitting efforts were scarves. So let's pick up from where I left off. I know I knit more than one but it is, alas, only the Niner scarf I remember. When I started knitting again, the first couple of things I made were a poncho and a scarf. Unfortunately I have photos of neither but hope to remedy that. It seems that poncho and that scarf are forever linked because it took me a few trips to what has become my main LYS (local yarn store,) Pashosh, before I got the right yarn and completed my first successful project.

I think I wanted to start with a pillow but the yarn I bought just didn't match my living room colors they way I thought it would. It was a thick and thin roving in shades of aqua to blue. It should have worked, but it didn't. So I decided to make a poncho for my favorite muse, my niece Talia. I didn't buy enough yarn, I didn't understand gauge yet, the pattern was all wrong, and then it was gone. No more yarn available. (Those two balls are sitting in my stash.) Aviva, the owner of Pashosh, suggested I buy a solid yarn for the top and bottom, thus stretching my limited yarn stash. Still didn't work. But I did finally turn that second purchase into a scarf. No simple scarf this time. Always looking for a challenge, I embarked upon my first cable project. It had a border of seed stitch, then 9 sts braided cable set off against a reverse stockinette. I had yet to buy a cable needle so I think I started using a safety pin. Didn't work well with a chunky yarn so I bought a stitch holder thinking that was a cable needle! Well all worked out in the end. I decided to give that scarf to my dad as well. Although we aren't really in touch, he seemed to be the appropriate choice. I left it with either my mom or grandma when I visited this summer. I don't know if he ever got it.

But that is not the end of my scarf saga. Since then I have made a few more, some quite simple and some more complex. I have my heart set on doing Backyard Leaves by Annie Modesitt, it will the most complicated thing I have done and I am just working on getting my hands on the pattern.

In the meantime here are some of the scarves I have been working on.

This scarf came from Lion Brand and is called Flowered Scarf.

A pretty simple crochet scarf, the flowers were fun and I made it in lavender, pale pink and cream. The pink one went to my friend Esty and the others sill need the flowers sewn on. I have one more of each color in various stages of development. These were supposed to be the big Chanuka present this year but they never made it out. Now I have a whole year to finish them and figure out who to give them to. This scarf is really soft because it is made of baby yarn Bebe, 100% acrylic with a 5.5mm hook. Flowers are made with a 5mm hook.

The next scarf I made is called Argosy.This pattern comes from my favorite website, Knitty. The patterns here are much more interesting than the standard yarn company ones and they are all FREE! The featured articles are great too. Techniques with Theresa has great advice on different cast ons, increases and decreases, double pointed needles, blocking, seaming and more. If you knit, you MUST check out this site.

Anyway, Argosy was a great little challenge. I learned to cast on additional stitches on ongoing work and dealt with lots of increases and decreases including my first use of SSK. After working the first section, the pattern becomes an 8 row repeat which I memorized pretty quickly. I really enjoy the squared edges and lacy look to it. I used the Israeli brand, Teddy Wool - Lady Mohair Rich, 30% mohair, 70% acrylic yarn for this on 4mm needles. With all of the increases and decreases the yarn kept falling off the needles so I bought my first (and only) pair of bamboo needles. Now the only problem with this is that while the colors are bright and fun and a bit childish, the pattern is not. I am still not sure who to give this too. In the meantime, I liked the pattern enough that I was happy to make it again with more appropriate colors.

I bought this yarn for another Knitty pattern, Clapotis. While it didn't work well for that pattern (more about Clapotis in a future posting...) I thought it was perfect for Argosy. This self striping yarn is from Lanas Stop: YES Please and is 46% wool, 34% polyamide, 20% mohair. The picture came out a bit dark but you can see by the yarn ball that there are some bright colors in there.The color and texture is perfect and I have enough yarn for two scarves so Melinda, you are the lucky winner!

The last scarf I will mention is this "Paper Chain" scarf. Reminds me of the construction paper chains we made as kids. I saw this displayed in a different yarn store (Shani, in the City Cellar) and copied it. The yarn is also from Lanas Stop: Stop Mohair, a 72% mohair, 18% acrylic, 10% wool in dark purple and a variegated yarn of pinks, purples and a touch of orange. 35 sts x 12 rows of stockinette on 7mm needles and then seamed as links. The yarn sheds a bit but the colors are great for the winter jacket my mom bought me when I started traveling to Russia 7 years ago. This scarf is also on hold while I finish my other projects, most importantly the sweaters that just need seaming so they can be sent off to Talia and her brothers Sammy, and Nathaniel.

Coming next...

Sweaters, Vests and Time Management


Anonymous said...

Very nice, Jess. You continue to amaze with your talent.
It's nice to be able to see what you're up to since we don't live in the same city anymore. Keep up the wonderful knitting.

Carmiya said...

Jessica, what can I say! I don't know a stitch about knitting but managed to be quite fascinated with your "scarf song".
It is so characteristic of you to discover a natural talent and develop it to its nth! And to use it to give to others!!
Looking forward to more knitting musicals!!!

Bethey said...

I just love them all, you are so talented, I carn't wait to see the next installment!!

menucha said...

What beautiful scarves!! I really love the chain idea!

Orlop =) said...

Knitty is wonderful, always lot's to make from them. I LOVE Argosy and even though I don't wear scarves I would like to make it because it's just so pretty. I've also been keen on the paper chain one because it remind me of what it reminded you, I used to make them for Sukkot and also because I think it's different and funky.
Orli from Avodat-Yad