Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Just Gotta Show Someone

After buying the book, Poems of Color a few months back, I've had a plan to knit a bohus sweater.  But I decided I wanted to spin the yarn for it.  The pattern that took my spinning fancy was called the Red Palm.  Even though the pattern was geared more to the pink side of the color wheel, I'm not so much of a pink girl so I wanted to do something more with to the orange/yellow side.  That led me to combine a color study I wanted to do with the project of spinning the colors for the yoke of the sweater.  See here

Next on the plan was to spin the red merino top from Ashland Bay.  About 800 yards of fingering weight 2-ply yarn was completed and, although not enough for the whole sweater, I thought it would be a good start.  Then I found out it was top down, which allows me the satisfaction of seeing the yoke come to life to support me through the long days of knitting a mile of stockinette.  Granted it will be red merino stockinette but nevertheless the fascination of the yoke will help the journey.

The other night I finally got started down that road and here's what I've come up with:
You can see the pattern as displayed in the hat pattern, although each bohus pattern in the book contains a pattern for a jacket, a sweater, a cardigan and a hat.  I'm making the cardigan.  You might need to click on the photo to see the color blends a little better but I'm really pleased with the effect so far and you can see my colors floating around there in back.  I love the way the strategically placed purl stitches do to add texture to it.  Add to that the "texture" of the not very well spun yarns and it's all I could have hoped for.

(Just a word about the less than perfect yarns.  They started out as a color study where I carded varying amounts of white, yellow, red and black yarns to make the gradual color changes.  I'd never done very well at long draw - which is what you generally do with rolags - which are what come off hand cards.  Add to that the fact that the yarn used was blue-faced leicester and merino - both longer stapled wool - which isn't as conducive to long draw.  It was a recipe for uneven yarn - even though I really like the effect in this project - and I've learned tons and did a way better job on the red merino.)

It's not something at this point that I can sit and work on for hours because the yoke is knit on size 1 needles which makes a dense fabric for the yoke but is a little hard on the fingers.  Like any kind of colorwork, though, it's mesmerizing to see the pattern develop.  Once I get through the yoke I should be able to work through the rest of it pretty quickly.  After all it's just stockinette with red merino.