Wednesday, 7 March 2012

I See A New Star...

Deliberate misquote there. The original is from a song in 'The Band Wagon' which starts 'I see a new sun, up in a new sky...'  However, since my newest project has a pattern more like a star than a sun, that's how it came out in my head.
I started the baby sweater my aunt commissioned yesterday. The getting started took a while. I had earmarked a skein of grey handspun for the base color, but swatching told me it was too thick - not even close enough for me to knit a small size and end up with the large one I wanted. So then the question was, could I find something in a reasonable weight where I had enough of one color for the sweater AND several other colors for the stars? After swatching and rejecting a few other things and rummaging through the stash, I found the leftover handspun, 2 1/2 skeins, from my February Fitted Pullover.

It's close enough gaugewise to use. I'm knitting the 0-3 month size for width and aiming for the 6-9 month dimensions. The blue/gray indigo and logwood mix means it'll be good whether the baby is a boy or a girl, and I have plenty of natural-dyed handspun I can use for the stars. Now fingers crossed it'll be enough yarn.

I was a leetle nervous about the stars, being as it is my first crack at intarsia. But by George, I think I've got it. Wool handspun is nice and grippy, so I think that helped, and the first star came out quite nicely.

There were a couple rows in there where I had 9 different strands of yarn going, and half of them were only needed for one stitch. I managed it without getting into an irretrievable tangle, happily. But weaving in ends is going to be fun.

It's quite amazing to think, after having tried it, that the original use for these patterns was for shoe insoles! Think of that. People who probably didn't have an excessive amount of free time, spent some of it doing intarsia with all these strands, for a finished product that went inside your shoe. I am in awe - and very happy my work will likely be more visible.

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