Friday, 25 July 2014

And There Goes the Yarn Diet. . .

Well, my willpower lasted six months.  I was very good and knitted entirely from stash (and had fun doing so);  I stayed away from the January wool sales at John Lewis and  I kept away from online sales. I organized all my skeins by weight and marvelled at how many lovely ones I had and how I really. really, didn't need any more wool. I felt confident and rather smug because I was solidly keeping to my new year's resolution.
And then I went on holiday. 
Sault Saint Marie's downtown main street has seen better days, but it has a lovely yarn shop/cafe. I had a great time browsing with a latte in Shabby Motley.  It has a truly cozy and inviting elegance with its textured wallpaper, dark beams, chandelier, velvet couches and big wooden tables. Friendly staff and of course all the colourful yarn on display.

Unfortunately most of their wool was British or international brands that I can easily get in the U.K. I did enjoy looking at all the colours of Rowan's new Pure Wool Worsted displayed on the bench at the entrance. They carry every single colour, much more than my local John Lewis.

So I was able to avoid yarn temptation, but splurged instead on magazines, some needles, a book of crochet patterns and lots of crochet hooks (my new obsession), and then later in Toronto found this perfect little travel case from the Umbra shop to carry them in.

It was in the Toronto yarn shops that I got into trouble, though in my weak defense, I didn't just idly buy the odd ball just for the heck of it (okay, execept for a very pretty blue skein of Madelinetosh sock yarn on sale at the Knit Cafe) but focused instead on project quantities.  The three balls of alpaca chunky in the lefthand corner (so soft) are earmarked for a big, cozy, burberry-like winter cowl. They were on sale at Romni Wools and I crumbled at one touch.  I bought a sweater's worth of Cascade Ecological Wool there as well (very economical and I need a cream sweater - don't we all?).  The bottom skein of Freia handpainted lace ombre yarn was called Maple and I thought it would make a stunning fall shawl if I can find the right pattern for it.  And I was in Canada - how could I not buy a color called Maple?

I arrived at the Purple Purl quite hot and sweaty as the Queen Street streetcar was diverted many blocks away due to road construction and I only had 20 minutes to spare.  I fell in love with these skeins of Juniper Moon's Zooey DK, a blend of cotton and linen. It looked so nice and cool to knit a summer top with.

Yes, I know I can talk and justify myself into buying anything where yarn is concerned but my next "purchase" doesn't count as the Liverpud had promised to buy me a sweater's worth of yarn for my birthday.  I chose several skeins of an old favourite - Cascade 220 heathers - in this cherry red with bits of orange in it.

And it was just the perfect yarn to embark on a new KAL with, one that was starting the day I arrived back in Liverpool.  Knit British, along with several other podcasters are co-hosting a knit-a-long for Lush, by Canadian designers, Tin Can Knits.  It's in their book, Handmade in the U.K.  which I used last year to make my Bonny.  Their patterns are very well written and easy to follow. This cardigan has an interesting construction. 

You start by knitting a long strip of lace.

And then you pick up stitches along the side for the yoke and the rest of the body.  This is how far I've gotten and I'm really enjoying the process so far. After months of knitting blanket squares with 4ply wool, it's a delight to be knitting with a heavier weight.

I haven't forgotten the blanket though - still knitting the never-ending trim and am starting to seam the squares together.  I placed them all on the bed last night to arrange them and I'm really liking the haphazard, patchwork look to it.  Still a long way to go though. . .

1 comment:

Anne Featonby said...

Ha ha ha....glad you brought home some goodies from Canada! I will b e finished my afghan by July about you? I can't wait to see your version!