Thursday, February 6, 2014
Recently I have received some wonderful yarn as gifts. Both my mother and sister have a great eye for luxury yarns and just love to buy them whenever possible. This always benefits me, especially around the holidays. With a birthday at the end of November, I consider it to be a part of the “holiday season” as well. This year I made out particularly well. For my birthday, my sister sent me a fabulous skein of MissBabs hand-dyed “Yummy” which is their sock/baby weight yarn in “Dark Oak” Sunshine Yarns, sent to me by my mother. Just saying that this yarn is green is a horrible injustice to this yarn. The color is called “Jade” and it is such a happy summer green. Now, I wonder what this yarn will become?
“Eagle Twist”, pattern written by Dennis Marquez. You can find it at my favorite online knitting community Ravelry.com. I did make some altercations to the pattern. Firstly, the pattern calls for a sport weight yarn but I was making it with sock weight. Because my yarn is finer, I thought I should also go with a smaller needle so instead of using US sz6, I opted to us US sz5 needles. Also, because I was afraid the end result was going to be a tiny scarf and not a shawl, I did a total of 7 sections of my contrasting color (the green) where the original pattern only called for 6. In the end......... IT’S HUGE!!
As far as learning a new technique went, well that didn’t go as smoothly as I’d have liked. I watched a few tutorials on continental knitting over at Youtube.com and gave it a go. It was uncomfortable at first, but got a little easier as I went along. The first few times I tried to purl in continental the stitches came out twisted so I decided I would just focus on the knitting and to keep the purling in english style. After the first few days my right hand was hurting some, due to all the new movements that my hand wasn’t used to. But that didn’t stop me, it just meant that I could work on it a little bit each day and be working on other projects at the same time. I’m ok with that. All and all, I learned how to knit, but not purl in continental and it is still sort of uncomfortable, but I think I’ll use this technique when I’m working other patterns that call for a lot of plain knitting. And someday I’ll learn to purl, as well.
I think that if I do this pattern again, there are a few things I would change. I would slip the first stitch in every row, this would make a much smoother edge. Also, I do not like the YO (yarn over) increases at the beginning and end of each row. I would do a different increase, either a KFB (knit front and back) or M1L/M1R (Make one Left/Make one Right). I think this would also look a bit smoother and not leave holes in the knitting. I considered changing the increases at the center cable but I believe that changing the YO’s would make the cable blend into the surrounding knitting. The holes that the YO’s create make the cable stand out. All in all I am very happy with the pattern.