Like many knitters, I have quite a stockpile of yarn. Some yarn I have purchased in quantities sufficient for a sweater. Other skeins I have purchased one of, just to see how I like working with the yarn and because the color compels me. One rationale is that, like an artist, I need to have a palette of colors (and fibers) from which to work. This year, I promised myself I would knit only from my stash. I would resist temptation and slowly whittle down my stash.
Stash Buster Number One – Chevron Mini-Dress
The Chevron Mini-Dress in the Spring/Summer 2015 issue of Vogue Knitting seemed to hit all my hot buttons. It was fashion-forward in a retro way. The model was knit in pinks,oranges, and reds which never fail to catch my eye. The yarn called for is Cascade Yarns Ultra Pima, a DK weight cotton for which I had a good substitute, Tahki Cotton Classic. The only stumbling block was that I had 4 colors – an ivory, 2 shades of green, and indigo. The pattern called for 6 analogous (or adjacent to eachother on the color wheel) colors. I used the weighted random stripe generator to create a stripe pattern that might not look too amateurish.
The pattern works from the hem up and I wanted to work from the top down. If I ran out of yarn, I wanted to decide whether or not to make this tunic longer by buying more yarn. In the end, I did buy one more skein of ivory which pretty much matched my original ivory and being separated from the older ivory by other stripes, seemed to blend well.
I worked on this all summer.The finished product looks quite different from the model nad yet, it still seems like a throwback to the 1960’s. The most remarkable thing about it is that the Cotton Classic from my stash was probably 15 years old!
Stash Buster Number Two – Quadri
Von Hinterm Stein published Quadri in September 2014. What I love about this is that it is a contemporary rendering of the shawl, light as feather, double sided, and employing simple squares for pattern. I learned a new technique, Navaho knitting, to make the triple-stranded squares with the one strand of the working yarn tripled while knitting. There are many demonstrations of this technique on YouTube.
On an impulse I had purchased a 1500-yard skein of Filatura Di Crossa Centolavaggi from a Ravelry designer. That is an amazing length and look at the cake it made!
This travelled around with me all summer and into the fall. The whole 1500 yards fit nicely into my knitting travel pouch. The finished Quadri made a perfect retirement/birthday/Christmas gift for Diane.
One Step Back
Alas, I am but one persuasive article away from purchasing new yarn. I read so much knitting literature – books, magazines, and blogs – that I put myself at risk of scuttling my stash resolution almost daily. And who could be more persuasive on the subject of yarn than Clara Parkes? She offered a one-time Shetland 1.0 yarn in undyed colors through her website. I couldn’t resist the uniqueness of the offering and purchased 5 300-yard skeins. The yarn is now on the needles as Foyle;s Pullover from Customfit by Amy Herzog. Temptation wins…for now.