For a blog that began its existence as a knitting blog, there's lately been a marked absence of knitting. I have been knitting, quite steadily, but not very productively. And even when I've finished a piece of knitting, I've been very tardy about blocking or recording it. I've not been inspired by any particular project, and as a result much of my knitting has been 'filling-in-time' knitting, using yarns I already own and making something that can easily be picked up and put down. Perhaps predictably, this has resulted in stripes and scarves.
Inspired by knitting friend Linda, I knitted a one-row stripe scarf. This is about as simple as knitting can be as it is simply a rectangle of stocking stitch. But it does have a couple of tweaks that make it that little bit different. The one-row stripes are achieved by knitting backwards and forwards on circular needles and sliding the knitting along the needles when needed to achieve the one-row stripes. Effectively, you knit two plain rows, then two purl rows and it results in stocking stitch.
The fingering weight yarn is knitted quite loosely on 4mm needles so that the scarf drapes well. I already had the yarns; the brown is Wollmeise 100% wool in Feldmaus colour, and the pink Swans Island fingering weight yarn that is 100% merino. Fortuitously, both yarns had a about the same degree of colour variegation which resulted in a nice tweedy outcome. Initially, I experimented with the brown Wollmeise and a toning self-striping yarn but the resulting fabric lost the effect of the stripes and looked rather messy. Because the scarf is stocking stitch all the edges roll - a finish that I really like.
I'm very happy with the outcome.
My second stripey project is actually something I really wanted to wear. I've had some grey and black Lush Yarns (now discontinued) for several years. It's an unusual fibre combination - 90% cotton and 10% cashmere - that results in a soft rather than crisp cotton fabric that's ideal for Sydney's climate. I've knitted a Baktus scarf; a tried and true pattern that's garter stitch (my favourite), ideal for stripes, and very easy to wear.
I simply knitted, increasing every sixth and then every fourth row till I'd used half the yarn, and then knitted on, decreasing to mirror the shape already completed.
Again, I'm really happy with my rather spiffy new black and grey scarf. I even like the way the stripes are fractured on the reverse side so that I don't have to worry about using it right side out.
So what am I knitting now? Yet another scarf and yet more garter stitch, though no stripes this time. But more of that once I've finished.