Sunday, July 2, 2017

Restash and Planned Projects

You know you've gone crazy when it takes almost 2 hours to wind yarn skeins. Admittedly, I encountered challenges (ain't it always the way??). But still, 9 balls of yarn - @2400 yards of fingering weight - takes a while. Especially if you hit tangles. And that doesn't even include the 10 skeins/ 1700 yards of Berroco Quechua, a new sport-weight yarn made of yak, merino and alpaca:

Berroco Quechua in Raven colourway - I appear to be the only person in the world who's bought this so far. Apparently this yarn just came out...
I intend to make a sweater out of this, probably starting in August. These are the latest options:

A-symmetrie by Cecilia Flori - this one is a bit shapeless but I do love the neckline.

Finlaggan by Kate Davies

Blackberry Cabled Cardigan by Alexandra Charlotte Dafoe
I'm  leaning toward Finlaggan. I guess I'm having a cable moment. I do have a slight concern that the Quechua may be a bit drapey for a classic cable cardi, but I'll verify that when swatching. The stitch definition and ply of this yarn are really lovely. It has a luxe feel that belies its price and I'm pleased to be a guinea pig.

I also bought this sock yarn, which I justified (it being an impulsive buy) by promising the remainder to my friend Jeanette, who bought it and is making a pair of socks with it right now:

Turtlepurl Yarns Striped Turtle Toes in The Artist
The remainders of her and my socks will be enough for a third pair. Note: For me (and I use @72g or 250ish yards of yarn on a pair of socks), buying 2 batches of Turtlepurl yarn (4 mini skeins designed to make 2 pairs of socks) actually yields 2 pairs. It's still pricey for socks. I got this batch on sale for $31 after tax but 62 bucks for 3 pairs of socks (or 2, if you knit differently than me), ain't cheap. The colour scheme is strangely riveting given that I don't love orange, baby blue or purple and I generally hate them together. Go figure.

Per yesterday's post, I've come up with a good plan (I think) and I'm amazed that all of the yarn I purchased is what I hoped it would be (in terms of colour, hand, quality and usefulness). I'm happy with my riff on Sonja's Starting Point. I'm going to use a deep yellow and a very green, saturated teal to round out Sonja's colour choices (a variegated, speckled cream, a grey and a cream). Effectively, I'll have swapped the navy blue and orange red she used in her version for the green and yellow:

This isn't where I saw myself going but I like it a lot. The breakdown is:

Quince and Co Finch in Peacock
Koigu KPM in 2405 grey
Shibui Staccato in Brass
Shibui Staccato in Ivory
Madeline Tosh Merino Light in Modern Fair Isle

I flat out copied the variegated Tosh from Sonja - and I liked her light and accent colours (cream and grey, which coordinates with the variegated yarn). The 2 "colours" are seriously saturated, very appealing. I do love knitting with yellow, though I rarely get the chance (because I never seem to buy it?!).

This is not the cheapest shawl I've ever decided to knit. Even with one yarn already purchased (the Quince, which is pretty inexpensive), and every other yarn 20 per cent off, this will have cost me $150 after tax. Sure, I'll likely have remainders to feed into other patterns, but I can't realistically quantify the cost of items made with yarn remnants. I purchase the yarn to make a particular item, and that item bears the cost.

For $300 all in, I have enough yarn to make a) a pair of socks (and a second if I merge my yarn with a friend's), a large shawl and a sweater. I didn't pay too much attention to price this time, because I had access to a good sale, I knew what I wanted to make and I've been knitting long enough to know that skimping on yarn is not the way to go (unless you have no choice). These yarns all feel gorgeous - not that they are all luxury-branded. That Shibui silk/merino blend is pricey. Madeline Tosh provides good yardage for the price, but it's still not budget.

Best of all, I have a bunch of new projects to spice up my stash knitting (always happening in some format or another). It's important to have choice, to keep it interesting.

So that's my re-stash. Thoughts??


  1. Money spent on yarn comes out of the entertainment budget not the clothing budget.

  2. Love these yarns. That drapey sweater is glorious, and I love pretty much anything Kate Davies designs. I'm mulling over my knitting options for autumn at the moment. It's tough to narrow it down! #firstworldproblems ;-)

    1. I've never done one of her designs before (at least I don't think I have) but I've been keeping my eye on them forever... Here's to first world problems!!

  3. Oh, the Quechua is surprisingly affordable for that fiber blend! I also adore that asymmetrical sweater... I'm starting to branch out into "real" knitting--two rows of colorwork on a hat, and now working on my first lace project. Current verdict is that knitted lace is way harder than stranded colorwork, and I'm not convinced it's worth the effort when crochet lace is so easy and intuitive. Maybe I will try a sweater sometime soon.

    1. I think crochet is nature's perfect way to get lace. Knitting it is kind of a torment, IMO. I would prefer stranded colourwork over lace most days (though I more often do lace, because stranding patterns don't generally "call" to me). OMG - the Quechua is so well priced given the fibers. I was hesitant because I thought it might seem cheap but it is very luxe.