Done with cuffs! Or am I?

I’m done knitting cuffs! This is the lot:

Nine pairs.

And one lonesome Dutch Knitting Design silver Krokus cuff hiding behind my cup of tea. It’s solo because I haven’t run into one of the many balls I know I have of this yarn. They must all be at the cabin.

These are the “spikkelcuffs”, from the miniskeins from indydyer Wol met Verve:

Such nice, round yarn. It’s 100% Merino, no nylon addition and not suitable for socks.

Each has one knitted top down (on the left) and one bottom up (the ones on the right). Done because I was afraid I’d run out of yarn. The difference shows in the top edging. I prefer the look of the ones that go top down.

There’s one handspun pair. That’s also knitted bottom up, because I wasn’t sure about the gauge:

It’s from Dutch Wool Diva sockfibre, left over from my nice handspun socks:

These ones are from one of the newly arrived Fabel sockyarn:

Which I chose for its colours. They are not so nice…. the yarn is scratchy. Not like the yarn I know as Fabel. The thread is not as round nor plied as it used to be. This yarn is more scratchy, more hairy and more loose. Fabel must have changed supplier or something. I don’t think I’ll wear these much…

Now these are a delight to wear:

Wol met Verve sock yarn. A nice, round, well plied and soft yarn. Even though it has 20% polyamide it’s still so soft you could knit a shawl from this and wear it next to your skin. Many people do.

The handdyed yarn from Chasing Clouds. The one I was failing to knit with dark brown into stranded cuffs. I frogged them and let the yarn shine on its own:

It’s out of my colour palette but it will be a nice pair or when I feel treehugging natur-y in the end of Summer/ begin of Autumn. They’re also a bit sturdy, being a sock yarn. But not scratchy, luckily.

I’ve changed the pattern slightly: in most of my cuffs I have knitted all knit stitches untwisted and have substituted all purl stitched for a slipped stitch column. For faster knitting.  In the top parts I’ve added a few rows so “the fan” runs a little higher.

In some variegated yarn I’ve knitted the wrist part in plain stockinette.

Then there’s this one:

Glittery grey purple yarn!

From Het Wolbeest. The skein I brought home from Kerkrade and shook at angry football supporters. Again nice soft yarn, a delight to knit with. Suitable for socks and next to skin wear.

It’s mate is having a bath:

Just finished. Ready for blocking. I love this colour. (It’s just warm water, not actually tea.)

And the Wollmeise cuffs that started this all, in colour Mauseschwanzchen, knitted per original pattern:

The ones that were on hiatus for so long because I was so bothered by the puzzle of one column of purl stitches being wider than the other:

Pattern picture from Narcissus pseudo-narcissus Cuff by Hunter Hammersen.

A puzzle that turned out to be:

  1. just one of those things when a twisted stitch is next to purl stitch and twists one way but not the other.
  2. just part of the pattern.
  3. something all projects have and nobody else is bothered by.
  4. not important. At all. Go live your life mrs. M.

I haven’t noticed the different sized columns at all while wearing my Wollmeise cuffs. Nor do I notice it when I see someone else wearing them.

Ha! The goats one can chose to burden oneself with…

What I DO notice when I see other people wearing this pattern is that a quality yarn shows. Posh. Wollmeise. The cuffs look simply splendid in quality yarns!

I’m a fool knitting this in scratchy sockyarn such as Regia or Fabel. I should toss those.
The three speckled pairs are not the right colours and are just for fun, as is the Dutch Wool Diva handspun pair.

That leaves me with these:

The sparkly greypurple Wolbeest; the seafoam Wol met Verve; the silvery Dutch Knitting Design -once I’ve found more yarn and knit its partner- and the greypurple Wollmeise.
That’s four (3,5) pair of cuffs to wear this Summer.

That’s not enough.
Not enough at all. I need more cuffs! In quality yarns. In (semi)solid colours.
These (semi)solid colours:

palette textures

Ohoo, I should like some charcoal cuffs! I wish I could grab that charred coal from the screen and wrap it around my wrist.
And lavender ones.
And steel blue ones. Light sky blue ones too?
At least one pair in a greenish grey for sure!
And how gorgeous is that soft lilac of cherish blossom?? With the Fabel gone I have no rose tones…
And more silver greys, definitely more silver greys.

I was pondering pearl white ones and had actually cast on with an offwhite silk I’ve had for years. But I think white cuffs won’t be wise. Not practical for actual living which is what I do. My hands will grabbing at fresh shorn fleece or strawberries this Summer. If the past (week) is anything to go by I’ll be dragging my sleeves through curry and cat hair. White cuffs are a mistake.

Not done knitting cuffs!
But done with cuffs in unpleasant yarn.

From now on I’ll be on the lookout for 20 gram remnants of quality yarns.
Perhaps I can swap some with friends. Even offer to knit us both a pair if they give me 45 grams of yarn? Now that’s a deal to explore over a nice cup of wool tea:

Zarte Knopse induces Spring sillyness.

Not sure what plant this is but the colour is gorgeous!
zarte knospe

A colour that I decided to match today:
zarte knospe

zarte knospe
Yep, the onion dyed socks in pattern Blattwerk.

But wait! There’s more!

zarte knospe
I’m wearing the skirt I made from a ’70s bedsheet that was left in the cabin by the previous owners.
It has an awesome pocket with a knot in it, based on this tutorial, and it’s lined with silk:

But wait! There’s more!

zarte knospe
I have my Wollmeise Spring Brioche shawl around my shoulders. Zarte Knospe and Spinaci.
Shown here in a composition called “Zarte Knospe and Sensible Shoe“.

I’m also wearing my reed dyed shirt:
zarte knospe

All the colours coordinate (maybe not according to my phone but they do in reality)

Everything is so bright and so green!

I think I was told that “ladies of a certain age” shouldn’t colour coordinate so obviously. Just like one shouldn’t wear a matching set of jewellery. That last one I was definitely told, in Autumn 2014, when I wanted a Labradorite necklace to go with my new glasses and wanted an wristband too.

The same people probably don’t approve of my sensible shoes either.

But that’s the great thing with being over 40: you don’t give one cent about what “they” say you should or shouldn’t do.

Besides, I plan to outrun the fashion police on these shoes anyway. Wearing my flashing socks and my eye watering green Zarte Knospe shawl flying in the wind.
Mouth full of bonbons.

Everything together now:
zarte knospe
Ahh. Spring.

By the way, I still don’t know what a Zarte Knospe is. Is it a black oak bud? I love the mystery so I let it continue.

All I know is that when you google images for “Zarte Knospe” you get Wollmeise, beautiful Wollmeise. Happy making yarn and projects:
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Leaving you with a spring in your step and a hole in your wallet.

Day 1 at the cabin

Day one at the cabin and I’ve been so productive, woolwise!

First thing I did when we came through the door, released the cats and sat down with a cup of tea was rip back half of what I knit in the car:

Because I had already started increasing for the calf of the Noro legwarmer. Forgetting this legwarmer should stack and therefor should remain the same sized tube for a quite a bit longer.

That’s one handful of two strands all twisted together, ready to be reknit. Lots of untwisting and trying to free yarn.
Knitting stripes with Noro isn’t something that happens naturally anyway, I have to break the yarn and skip parts if the two colours will look the same for too long and then have to look ahead and match colours again. Quite a bit of colour reasoning needed, when knitting Noro.

After this and my cup of tea I had to unpack our bags and was greeted by my green dyeing pan, neatly parked under the coffee table for two weeks. It had faithfully harboured my bags of plant dyeing experiments. Opening those would be “interesting”. I took it outside.


Hmmm, growing spores and all possible sorts of new medicines.

Do you have the word “smurrie” in your language? It is akin to “smear” and I guess there’s a bit of “slurry” in there too. Made from decayed plants whose textures melt when touched.
There you go, you now know exactly what I mean by “a pan full of green smurrie” and what I had to put my hands into!
Ew.

I took the bits of wool out of the bags -taking care to avoid skin contact with that one bag of Cow’s Parsley/ Bear Claw- and let them dry in the wind, each with their little cotton thread bound around it. That’s the thread with a code in knots to tell me which plant dyed what colour. No need to break the code though, it’s clear that each thread reads: “this plant dyes yellow”.


Except Pimpernel, that one dyes reddish brown.

I then washed my pan and I had a look at the iron afterbath that I’ve been curing:

Nice orange “smurrie”!
Not touching it.

Then I went inside, washed my hands and blocked Holle Cardi!

Can’t wait until it’s dry. If it fits I may have weird arms…

Having now only one cardigan on the needles (that needs major sleeve surgery (again!)) and being exhausted from all these wool adventures I then laid on the couch for the remainder of the day and did the only thing one can do when one’s reconnected with the stash again: cast on for a new cardigan, with a yarn one’s never tried.

I chose Wollmeise Lace, in the colourway Arlene.
WM Lace is more of a light fingering weight than a true lace, there are 1500 m on one skein (300 grams). In theory I can get one cardi from one skein:


Arlene is a multi-colour way but the brown, blues and purples are so close in darkness that I think I’ll like it anyway.
I’m knitting this one on 2 mm needles too because it doesn’t seem matter if I’m using WM DK, fingering or lace, I always get 21 stitches to the 10 cm on 2 mm needles.

I chose pattern Emma cardigan, by Janine Le Cras:

It has a lacy bottom half and this is excellent for multicoloured or pooling yarns.
But before casting on I still had to follow through some reasoning:

Premisse: this is a dark yarn and a light weight yarn.

  1. The weight will make this a light type of cardigan, not very warm. A Summer cardigan. Do I need one of those? (Not in particular). Will I wear it? (Yes.)
  2. Will a dark coloured garment complement my complexion in Summer? (Yes.)
  3. The lace in the pattern means it will be distinctively see-through so I better wear something in the mid or dark tone under it, preferable a non-patterned garment. Do I have such a garment in my Summer wardrobe? (No I don’t.)
  4. Can I make one? (Yes.) Better sew up a Summer dress for Summer 2016 in the right colour to go with my new cardigan. Seeing how well Pumpkin Ale goes with Arlene I already have some perfect fabric in my stash. One that will go great with Pumpkin Ale too. 🙂

I’m really looking forward to how an empire waist will look on my body. I do need a garment to flow inwards at the underbust -which is why people like me should not wear shift dresses- and I think this pattern will do me right.

Here’s me in a shift dress: no shaping at the front.

You’d think I have large stomach but I’m probably hiding some of the stash under there…

It wears comfortable though, a shift dress. I tell/kid myself that through movement and souple fabric my body shows that my stomach is indeed not as wide as my bust, which is what this dress leads you to believe.

But some shaping at the underbust would be better. So I’m really looking forward how Emma cardigan will do this.

Then, right before bed, I did a little bit of spinning because I’ve been missing my wheel for two weeks and I’d just brought the Spring Rolls with me from the city (we drove here in a small blueberry, this was the only fibre there was room for):

It’s going to be a thin n-ply because I’m totally smitten with the mittens Serafina145 made from these exact kind of rolls:

Serafina145’s Mitts for a cup of tea, gorgeous! Pattern Burning Love Fingerless mitts by Dutch Mama.

Serafina145 also has a cup of tea to go with her yarn:

A beautiful and inspiring project from start to finish!

Brioching hard.

This is how far the Brioche shawl was:

I’m working on the top part in two colour stockinette stitch brioche, knitted in Double Dutch technique. With decreases for some shoulder and neck shaping.
The shoulder shaping is no longer visible because I frogged it. I made mistakes that could not be remedied. Better to frog it and reknit.

Which I’ve done. It was a drag to pick up all the stitches in brioche but I did it. I’ve knitted a few rows now, remembering to put in those back decreases.
But now I’ve forgotten to put in the shoulder decreases…

Shaping at the neck:

In the front I decrease one stitch every row at each end. This gives this shape, vertical fronts:

But this was how it was. Not only had I forgotten to start the shoulder decreases, the decreases at the neck are not positioned right, they are not centred. They are two dark green lines off centre. I couldn’t fudge it, I would always see it.
So I’ve frogged half the top part to reknit it. And place the decreases in the middle. And remember to start shoulder decreases.

This is the second time I have to reknit the top. I have a hard time counting correctly the past few weeks…

progress on Holle cardi

Holle cardi is trucking along nicely. I LOVE working with Wollmeise DK yarn. I think I’ll never purchase any other Wollmeise weight besides DK again in the future. For cardigans and pullovers that is.

Knitting top down following the pattern Colours of Kauai I’ve now just passed the apex point. I put in a couple of bustdarts and increased a few stitches. I’ll take them out soon.

Knitting goes well. I understand the lace pattern and can see when I’m doing it wrong. Like 8 rows back. I’m trying to make my mind up at the moment: rip back or not.
I’m sure you can’t see it now but I made a glaring mistake and it will be right on my bust. Glaring.

Pardon all the Lillepoes cat hairs on this project…
She’s shedding and Wollmeise acts like a magnet to cat hair. Probably the “meise” in its name…

All kinds of “meisen”:


I’ve just given up picking away the hairs for the time being. When this cardi is finished and shedding season is over I’ll give it a going over.

These are the buttons I have for this cardigan. We have a fantastic button stall at the regular market on Wednesdays in the city. It’s run by two elder men who still sell stock from the ’80s.

Shown here near my freak mutant Geranium flower. It’s one of the first plants I bought when I first owned a house with a garden, 15 years ago. It was just a regular geranium, with regular round petals. But in this beautiful colour. The next year it came back in bloom like this, with freakingly shaped petals.

I love it and I’ve managed to keep it alive in the gardens I’ve owned since then: a small dark city garden facing north and a sandy forest “garden” with hungry hares and deer running wild. This year I’m fattening up and dividing its roots, to try and multiply this specimen.

Colours of PimpelPurple

I heard you thinking yesterday: “THREE cardigans on the needles? There’s the blue contiguous one and that Pumpkin Ale in Wollmeise. What third cardigan?”

Well, last week I started another cardigan. I had just cast off Sprig Pullover and I have this beautiful Wollmeise DK in the most beautiful purple and I have just the right buttons to go with it…

The pattern is Colors of Kauai by Hanna Maciejewska, a paid for pattern, top down, that I’ve made once before but I don’t wear it:

 colours or Kauai project page

Actually, I’ve started this pattern on two other occasions since then but I never finished them. Once in fuzzy white alpaca lace and once in Ruby Tuesday red wollmeise fingering weight.

The fuzzy one got frogged because it turns out I don’t like knitting with fuzzy lace weights (huh?). The red one got frogged because I tried to do simultaneously set-in-sleeves at the same time and I just lost the plot with too much things going on at once. And it was too narrow at the shoulders, as you can see in the picture. Also, if I recall correctly, I only had two skeins of sockyarn which would give me again a cardi with short sleeves that I wouldn’t wear.

Since then I’ve procured a third skein of the red yarn and have casted on for Old Ruby Town cardigan with a lovely sideways lace edging. Only to park it because of the shoulder thing. Argh! There will be a red cardi in my future, I’m sure. But it may be a future far away…

btw, the white fuzzy one shows how invisible the provisional cast on row in this pattern is! It’s at the arrow, left bottom corner.

For the current purple cardi I did a regular cast-on, Tillybuddy’s stretchy one, and picked up stitches afterwards. This too is invisible from the Right Side. But from the wrong side there’s a ridge. I wanted this because this ridge gives the shoulder more structure. It’s my belief that a cardigan hangs mainly from the shoulder.

As does my own body.
Which is why, when choosing a size clothes to wear/make, you need to choose the one that fits your shoulders well. Everything else can (and needs) to be altered but shoulders are key.

Colours of Kauai has a certain lace pattern in the front panels but I wanted a different one. I had seen a gorgeous sun yellow one  that has been blowing me away for 21 months now:

 pic by Pattepoilue

Absolutely wonderful! I want this. And those trousers and that tan, shirt and necklace. And that physique. And those little boobs so I may move freely and jump and run and wear wonderful happy sweaters.

Pattepoilue was inspired by Jettshin, who is a marvellous crafter, and who’d used this lace pattern in another fitting cardigan.

Beautiful detail on the sleeve! Happy skirt! Happy shoes!
Jettshin’s cardi is knit contiguous by the way. (I don’t know this method well enough to copy it. Yet.)

Utterly inspired by the vibe of these two ladies I now add my own happy colour to this idea.

First I did a whole day of studies of the lace pattern to find out how to deal with my yarn overs and the big holes they make and how to get the columns of twisted knits to grow stunningly out of the increases. And I wanted that little curl in the middle to fold nicely onto itself:

The lace pattern is a known pattern in several knit designs. I took it from a Japanese stitch dictionary: Knitting Stitches 300, it’s stitch #71. After a day of swatching it turns out following the lace pattern exactly is the most beautiful option… insert “Duh”.

And that I had copied the pattern incorrectly and had been working from a wrong chart all day …. insert “Duh” #2.

So the next day I cast on and went zoom!

By now I’m feeling pretty smug about all aspects of this knitting project: the pattern, the colours, the lace, the yarn weight, the way the yarn handles. And my sharky project bag (4 euros at Tiger.dk)

Here the back is finished and the two front panels. I’m about to cast on stitches for the underarms and connect these three panels.

When I do I’ll knit a few rows and then I try it on. To determine wether it needs bustdarts and where they go.

I named this cardigan “Holle cardi” because this colourway is called “Fliederbusch” which, although it refers to the Lilac flowering bush, I associate with the Elderberry (Sambucus), which is called “Vlier” in my native tongue. Too close to “Flieder” to keep them separate!

Lilac. Way more subdued than my yarn.

De “Vlier” is called “Hollunderbusch” or “Holle bush” in German because it’s the signature shrub of Frau Holle. Known from the fairytale by the Grimm brothers. But actually a goddess from way before the Celts and the Germanic tribes washed over Europe. Known for nature, the weather, husbandry and farming, birth and death, women and wool spinning.

De Vlier follows the seasonal transitions of the goddess: in Spring she wears white airy flowers who smell sweet. In Summer the berries ripen and the leafs are full and green. In Autumn the berries are deep purple black and edible and give a red juice.

Holle, or Hulda, her colours are green, white and red (or was it black?). And she may well be the “Elder mother” from which the Elderberry gets its name. “Hollunderbusch” literally reads as “Holle under the bush” and throughout time the Elderberry is to believed to actually house a (female) spirit. For centuries it was Frau Holle but when Christianity forbade other deities it became evil spirits and witches. Or the Elder Mother who has to be asked before taking wood from the Elderberry.

 Elda Mor, illustration by Arthur Rackham

Disrespecting the Elder Mother would rain misfortune upon the proud human. Sounds like something Frau Holle would do alright.

Wollmeise Fiederbusch yarn looks like it was steeped in Elderberry juice, fresh in the sun. It’s such a celebratory colour! It talks to me of life and cheer and womanhood. And strength.

I really want to knit with it. This time I’m changing the pattern slightly so I will wear it more often than my other Colours of Kauai: more wearing ease and longer sleeves.

Zoom zoom.

Weird Wool Wednesday: some poiple you cannot trust

Perhaps if I photograph it fuzzy artyfarty…. perhaps it will make some sense…

IMG_7365

Flax Skew. Striped Lammy Skew. Softspoken green Skew. Spicy striped green Skew. Mystery sock Coexist. **Something Poiple??**

Making the best of four needles 2 mm. One Skew is parked. One Skew is not cast on. Mystery sock are two on one needle, waiting for the next cue. That leaves… **something poiple??**

IMG_7366

Yes. Something in a beautiful pale purple. On needles 2mm.
I cast on for Pumpkin Ale cardigan. I was without defenses.

This cardigan I want to wear this Summer. The Harry Potter leg on the mystery sock made me want to do some more cabling right away and the back panel of Pumpkin Ale has just the right amount of cabling. So you’ll agree, it makes sense. Somewhat.

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Whipped, I’m utterly whipped. (Don’t tell the WIPs)

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Progress on Spring Brioche shawl.

I finished the long strip of light green. I used about 95 grams of the Wollmeise (which is a 150 grams skein). Its dimensions are 90 cm x 13 cm but it stretches to much more than that.

Now I’ve started attaching a two colour brioche strip on the top. It was VERY fiddly to get it started. But I’m on the way now.



Final studies for Spring Brioche Shawl and cast on.

Last weekend, as I was running out the door to go to that cat/wool party, I grabbed my silly little suitcase:

It looks terribly childish, especially next to the red Deer&Doe dress I was wearing, but I realized at the very last second that it contained what I wanted to study in the two hour train trip:

My swatch for the Spring Brioche Shawl! The one I’ve been harping on about for months now.

Luckily, one of my knitter friends travelled on the same train as I and she agreed to sit next to all my childishness and we had a little study group going on. Showing and explaining my swatches made it easy to see what I like and what not. Even though my swatches always look messy and unorganized my friend could see every little change and its significance. A knitter friend is a wonderful gift! She advised me to stick to what I like and not try to force things that do not work.
When I got of the train I was ready for the final stretch.

So last Wednesday I put my suitcase on the table and made a thorough study of all the Brioche colour work that I would actually consider for this shawl:

(I once read this marvellous insult: “I neither have the time nor the crayons to explain it to you.” This is pretty much how I feel treated when the cat “helps” me like this. She has no regard for my work. Nor for my crayons.)

A clear plan emerged. The shawl is going to start out with a wide strip that’s knitted sideways. It will feature diamond shapes through travelling stitches all in one colour. At the top it will have two coloured brioche in stockinette stitch stripes (they are so neat!). Later on stitches will be picked up at one long side for a neck detail in the dark colour and at the other long side for an interesting edge in two colours. (We’re thinking stockinette stitched stripes again because they are so crisp but we have to consider curling too.)
I started the final swatch:

It’s at the bottom of the picture. The light green part has diamond shaped details by ways of travelling stitches. This was going to be the Art Deco part of the shawl, after all.
The two coloured part has stockinette stripes in it.

At the top is the long thin part you’ve seen before, in which I studied various two colour brioche combinations and searched for the right needle size.

But the travelling stitches… they don’t look nice. In fact they look horrible.
I played around a bit more, trying various variables, to get them better. I failed.
But now I don’t think it’s possible to make angular lines with travelling stitches on brioche, at all. They are all more flowing and round than angular. (And I cannot get the travelling stitches to be consistent in tension anyway).

On Ravelry this is the only project I’ve found that looks decently angular and is in travelling stitches, and with all the reclining on the couch I’ve been doing I think I’ve seen every brioche/fishermen’s rib project out there.

Celtish by Joshua Carlson a.k.a. The Bearded Knitter
Wonderful scarf and a free pattern too! But still quite flowy, more “Celtic” than “Art Deco”.

So I switched tactics. Travelling stitches were out. All those beautiful shawls that had inspired me to start this project had to be put out of my mind. I had to go another way. Fly free, mind, fly free.

One avenue that Brioche offers is to use the characteristic striped texture it possesses to make diamond shapes. Make lines with increases and decreases. Use lines to define shapes.
I studied a few examples on Ravelry. The best one is Windmolen jacket by Nancy Merchant:

But I didn’t have the book with me in the city so I couldn’t study it in detail. I tried a bit on my own in the swatch but I quickly saw I couldn’t make it work.

Another thing in the swatch that bugged me was the amount of stripes going on at the left. I don’t need 7 dark stripes. I’m reluctant towards stripes to begin with.
So I bound off a few of the stripes, to see how 5 dark stripes would look. Better. Much better. Pretty soon I bound off all of them, so I could focus on the light green part and study shaping through increasing and decreasing.

That was disastrous. Conclusion: I can’t make diamond shapes that way. And I don’t want to wait till the weekend to study Windmolen Jacket. And this is just another swatch.

So I changed course once more and “settled” for just textured stripes to hint at Art Deco. No diamond shapes this time. Only stripes. And not coloured stripes either, no, just the stripey texture Brioche has all on its own. Especially knit on a small needle and in good round yarn (hello Wollmeise) it can look very crisp.
Design plan: monocoloured stripes and a few multicoloured details…

Looking once more at the Brioche patterns I favourited on Ravelry and the sketches I made on my notepad I decided upon three stitch combinations I wanted to use in this sideways panel:

  1. a small band of two coloured stockinette stripes. Only 5 dark ones. (remember edge stitch)
  2. a slightly wider band with dark leaflike shapes on light background, all done with increases and decreases
  3. a wide band in only light green that has stripes feathering out. (remember edge stitch)

On paper I sketched the final decisions, determined that the increases would make a nice beginning and decided on the final number for cast on.
Then I ripped out all the swatches I’d made. Wound the yarn into balls again and casted on for the real thing:

Beginning of my shawl.

That’s the solid part on the right, with the increases fanning out and the yarn ends laying in the way. In the middle is the colour work, there are already two dark leaves finished and I already messed up how decreases must be done (change around the colour sequence to avoid light green lines in a dark green detail) and the leaves sport between them a rather pronounced light green column of burp-stitches. At the left is the stockinette stitch stripe part. There are 5 dark stripes there and only in the last 4 rows I realized that one light green column ought to be burps not knits.

This is as far as I got with this version of Spring Brioche Shawl.

Apart from the faults I mentioned above the main problem is the combination of a solid part with a two coloured part. Because of how Brioche works I had to work the solid part twice as many times as the coloured part. In between I had to twirl the yarns around each other to anchor the light part to the other part. And I had to push stitches around on needles all the time to work one part on one colour while the other colour was waiting half way the needle. It was driving me nuts. But I was probably willing to put up with it, even as the shawl would grow much wider, if the bridge between the two coloured and mono coloured part hadn’t looked so awful. It looks like I knotted each row together. While wearing mittens. Thrummed mittens.

 Family Thrummed Mittens by Catherine Vardy

I put it in its suitcase for the night.

The next day I looked at it with fresh eyes. And I knew what had to be done: the solid colour has to be worked separate from the two coloured part. This means working a wide sideways strip in one colour, then pick up stitches at the long side and then work a second, two coloured, strip alongside it. This strip will have the “leaves” and the five (or three?) dark green bands.
(Adding a sideways knitted strip to any piece of knitwear is usually a thing I avoid but in this case it’s really the best thing to do.)
After that pick up stitches once again for neck detail and edging all around.

So here we are. Spring Brioche Shawl has started! This is two days of knitting:

A sideways knit band of Brioche increasing. Brioche is so stripey already that it doesn’t need anything else, less is indeed more. The top side is smaller than the bottom side. But overall it’s not deep/high at all, not even 15 cm. This doesn’t feel wide enough but I don’t know how Wollmeise brioche will behave when finished. Will it stretch? Will it bounce back?

Needles are small: 2 mm. The yarn is Wollmeise Twin which is a tightly spun, round yarn, and the colourway is Zarte Knopse. To be combined with Spinaci.

I really like how crisp the brioche looks on 2 mm needles! I like the feel of the fabric. For now it’s very bouncy. I already suspect I won’t have enough yarn for the shawl I have planned, this is knitting up yarn so fast. But I won’t mind buying more. It’s a good thing this is a repeatable colourway. But will a 600 grams shawl be usable?

When I’m buying more, I wouldn’t mind buying some extra for a pullover in Wollmeise Brioche either, mind. Probably in Lace since that’s a little bit smaller in gauge. The ease would be amazing. A fitted look without the need for not-breathing. Excellent.

But that’s for later, today I’m knitting my brioche shawl and as we’re travelling between city and cabin a few times I’m working from a little suitcase. I feel so organized!

(Suitcases also works to keep the yarn snobby cat Poekie out of my project)