Wednesday, October 08, 2008

A Walk in the Woods

Fall is one of my favorite seasons. I love the crispness of the air and the transformation of the verdant Blue Ridge mountains into a veritable color palette. I can't think of a better time to cast on for the Walk in the Woods Jacket from the Interweave book "Inspired to Knit" than now. I haven't found a book in ages that excites me as much as this one does. There are several patterns that I can't wait to cast on for but this one beat the others hands down.

I dove into the stash and was surprised that I had 75% of the colors in either Manos or Malabrigo yarns. The other 25%, I decided to spin up and dye using the Rupperts Corriedale I bought at Maryland Sheep and Wool this year. Twas a labor of love washing, carding, spinning and dyeing that yarn but it was worth it. I love the results.

Flicked and carded batts of corriedale fleece Pyramid of corrie batts.jpg

Washed and carded batts

Corriedale yarn bulky spun

All spun up into yarn

Handspun Corriedale yarn in the dyepot

Cooking up maroon yarn goodness

Skeins of handspun and dyed Corriedale

Happy dyed skeins

Sleeve swatch of "Walk in the Woods Jacket" Casting on for the "Walk in the Woods Jacket"

Finally, casting on

Fleecy goodness

What I felt like once it was all over...

I've learned so much just knitting the sleeve as a swatch. A year or two ago and I would have impaled myself on my needles before I would have taken on such a large scale intarsia project. There are SO many ends to weave in. But I'm madly in love with all of these colors. And I will love this sweater forever so I plod ahead and am 1/3 the way up the back. I screwed up one flower on the sleeve (its an Amish mistake, right Robin?) and knit it in the wrong color. I might frog it, I might say the heck with it and leave it. I'll decide another time. The inconsistent thickness of yarn makes me a little crazy from time to time but it seems to all work out in the end. And while it is NOT a portable project, it has been an easy project to pick up and put down thanks to my magnet board. And its knitting up quickly. I'm hoping to have it finished by my birthday later this month as a prezzie to myself (and perhaps to wear to Stitches East which continues to be an on-again/off-again prospect). We'll see if I'm all smiles after another week or so of knitting on it.

On an unrelated note, I've started a Ravelry group and Heifer team for Heifer International supporters called Team Ravelry (you can also visit the team's progress through Team Heifer HERE). If you love Heifer and its outreach, please consider joining or supporting our efforts. We're planning to do some fundraisers, knit-a-longs, team projects, etc. in the future. I'm going to be posting more patterns soon and Heifer will again be a beneficiary. Lots of fun is planned for the coming months. Hope you'll come along for the ride.


Robin said...

WOW are going to town on that sweater! LOVE IT!!
Amish mistake? Only you will know it's there! Don't frog it!

Ho-Ho-Ho! (no, I'm not calling you names!)

KnitNana said...

You're amazing. I think the knitting so far is stunning (I agree with Robin) and you're just adorable in all that wool...

Keowdie said...

You make it look so easy! It's like you just got out of bed one morning and said, "I think I'll make a sweater today," like most people would say, "I think I'll brush my hair today."

I wish I was far enough along with my spinning skills to just whip up some yarn and knit it into a fabulously complicated sweater!!!

Robin said...

The sweater is going to be gorgeous! I love the colors. Also, the peas and fiber fairies in the previous post are so cute!