Held Double

Flexes fingers…stretches arms…ok, this is all stuff I’ve said before, so totally feel free to skip right over this if you’ve been here a while.  But just in case you’re new, here’s the spiel on the cast on.

Yup, I totally cast on over two needles held together.

Before anyone screams or cries into their tea or sends me worried messages…don’t panic, I know that doesn’t make the cast on any looser or stretchier.  To make the cast on looser, you need more space *between* one stitch and its neighbor. But casting on this way does make each individual stitch a tiny bit *taller*.  And that makes my cast on a better match to the stitches I make on the rest of the project.

See, I’m a pretty loose knitter.  So the loops of yarn I make are a good bit bigger than the needles I make them with.  BUT…for some reason I’m a tight cast-er on-er (no, not a word, but you get what I mean).  So if I just use one needle to cast on, the loops of yarn I make in my cast on would be way smaller than the loops of yarn I make my regular stitches with, and that’s no good.

So, casting on over two needles helps balance them out.  I could get the same result by casting on over one much larger needle.  But that would require digging such a needle out of the needle cage (and runs the risk of inadvertently then using that big needle as I start knitting, which you wouldn’t think would happen, but I can say with certainty that it can).

So, this works for me, and I know how/why it works.  If you knit tightly when you cast on but loosely otherwise, it might work for you too.  But if all you need is for your cast on to be bigger around, then you have to leave more space between stitches instead!

That’s going to work out nicely…

Pretty sure we need more brioche.  And I’m pretty sure this is going to be the way to do it.

That orange is some seriously deep stash.  The company is, alas, apparently out of business…and normally that means I would not use the yarn, but it’s a common enough base that it won’t be hard to find an equivalent yarn.  And my goodness but it’s too pretty not to use.

All my suspicions are confirmed by the swatch (insert ‘yay swatch, swatch is important, swatch is useful’ peptalk right about here).  That is, indeed, going to be smashing.

Yarns are Punta Yarns’ Mericash in color HP66 and Malabrigo’s Rios in Sabiduria. ⠀

They grew

Turns out, if you keep making stitches at even a slightly faster rate than you rip them out, your project will eventually grow.  Even if you’re tired.  Even if it’s been raining for two weeks straight.  Even if you have a crew full of marvelous folks doing necessary but noisy (oh so noisy) repair work at your house.

And if your knitting grows for long enough, you get to make a thumb.

And if your brain works the way mine does, two things happen.  First, you absolutely adore the thumb.  Second, you think it looks just the tiniest bit like a cartoon circus tent.  But somehow you kinda don’t mind at all.

Not even a little bit sad about that.  Just wait till you see it all poufed out (being trapped on a needle makes it much flatter than it is in real life).  It’s unspeakably satisfying.

The matching hat is coming out early in May, and then these will follow along mid month so you can revel in them too if you’re as smitten as I am!

 

 

Show off

I have this little voice in the back of my head that says I should attempt to maintain some sort of semblance of self effacing modesty.  That I should not let on about how tickled pink I am about this whole thing.

But you know what?  That little voice is absolutely drowned out by the ever so much louder voice saying “Holy crap look what I made.  Isn’t it fabulous? Don’t you just love it to bits?!?”

And today?  Well today the louder voice is winning. Because this really is rather delightful.

It’s off with testers now (some day we’re going to talk about how much I love the part of the process where I get to watch other people make the thing that existed first only in my head, because it really is kind of trippy).  And I’ll be venturing out to take proper photos of it here shortly (I like to have the mitts and the hat get their photos at the same time so I don’t have to worry about the light being different on different days).  And then the pattern should be out in May (the magic linky thing at the bottom of this post will let you sign up to hear when it’s out if you want a heads up).

If you want to start tracking down yarn, I used a skein of Malabrigo’s Rios in Natural (that’s the white bit), and a skein of Freia’s Sport Gradient in Flare, and I had plenty of yarn to do the hat and mitts from one skein of each (standard disclaimer about how if you decide to make your mitts elbow length you may have a different experience, but I have a big head and big hands, and I was fine).

 

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Pretty much like that

So after that ‘let’s go straight for a nice long time…no…longer than you think’ part, then comes the ‘aaaaaaand three rows and you’re done’ bit.

At least that’s how my hats tend to work.  I’m a tremendous fan of a quick decrease on hats.  It actually means you’re knitting a bit more fabric (because you have to make the straight part a bit taller before you start the decreases), but I feel like it fits better and it doesn’t give me hat hair.

Plus it lets you do all sorts of delightfully dramatic stuff on the top.  This one is going to be all starburst-y sparkle pony on the top (yes, that’s totally the technical term).  It’s going to be grand.

And, as you may have noticed, I’m nowhere near through the whole color progression on the gradient yarn.  Which could be a bummer if I were only planning to knit a hat.  But once again fingerless gloves will come to the rescue.  I used a long gradient on fingerless gloves once before and was a tiny bit worried I’d be bugged by the whole ‘ack, they aren’t technically exactly matching’ thing, but it turns out I’m actually ok with it.  Which is good, because this yarn is way to pretty to let it go to waste!

 

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