2012 Project: Sky Scarf

I learned to knit a few years ago and loved it, but between work, writing and life I hardly ever have any time to do it. So I’ve decided to ease back into knitting with a 365 knitting project. Yes, I know how ridiculous that sounds, but this is project that should be fairly easy for me to keep up with.

Lea Redmond of Leafcutter Designs developed this conceptual knitting project that allows you to record a year’s worth of skies in a scarf. Each day I’ll check the sky and then knit one row across (and one back) that reflects the colors I see. Bright blue strands for bright blue days, light blue for light blue days, white and light grey for their respective cloud colors and dark grey for dark and rainy days. Lea uses two two strands of lace-weight yarn for each day, so a partly cloudy day would be a blue and a white together in one row. At the end of the year I’ll have knitted a five-foot-long scarf. Knowing Seattle weather, I expect a scarf with a lot of grey at the ends and blue in the middle, but the weather may surprise me.

I picked up most of my yarn for the project at my local yarn store, Seattle Yarn, but I had to order the dark grey online. While I wait for it to arrive I’m tracking my sky colors. I’ll post pics once I have a bit of it knit.

For more information on the sky scarf and a copy of the pattern, visit Leafcutter Designs. I found out about the idea from this post on Whipup.net.

Wander Girl Learns to Knit

Flur learns to knit

I’m not sure if I’ve mentioned this here before, but I love wool. I really think it’s the best fiber on the planet. And the best sheep, of course, are the merino sheep. There wool is so soft, and so warm when it needs to be and so not warm when it’s hot out, and it resists odor amazingly well. I wear wool every day in the winter, and most of that wool is merino. Merino long underwear, merino knee high socks, wool sweaters layered over wool t-shirts, and wool pants to work (er, well, I did when I was working, anyway). Most of my coats and hats are wool too.

So it occurred to me a about a month ago that it was silly that I didn’t know how to knit. Shouldn’t a wool junkie know how to make the good stuff into sweaters, scarves and socks? What if the second great depression hit and it was up to me to clothe the family? How would I keep us warm though the long, cold nights?

Well, okay, we’re a long way away from that (I hope!) but it still seems like knitting is something I ought to know how to do, and it could be a fun task to keep me busy through the long, cold nights of the Minnesota winter. So, following the advice of the always-helpful women of the TE forums, I bought a book, Stitch and Bitch, and then hit up my local yarn store. The wonderful woman that helped me at the LYS recommended that I go with a light-colored yarn so that I could see my stitches better, and she recommend wool (of course) as the best fiber to learn to knit with. So I picked out a yummy pink yarn from Debbie Bliss and some bamboo knitting needles and was on my way.

I followed the book to learn to cast on stitches, and then learned to knit and purl in the continental style of knitting. I picked the continental style as I’m left-handed, and in this style the left hand holds the yarn. One I got the stitching down I got started on my first project, a pretty pink scarf.

The scarf pattern that I’m using came from my mom. You cast on however many stitches you want as long as they are a multiple of four, and then you add one more. Then you knit two, then purl two throughout the row. When you get to the end you knit one and then start the next row. It makes a more wavy pattern than regular ribbing. I have a scarf in this pattern that my mom made for me, and I love the look and feel of it, so it was an easy pick. It’s a bit challenging for a first project because you’re knitting and purling, and also because you’re not always knitting the knits and purling the purls, but I think (hope) I can pull it off. So far so good. I’m a knitter!