Everything Is Not What It Seems

You would think I would get better at estimating how long things take, considering I’ve been knitting for over ten years. Seriously, I should be better at this. But I have managed to mess up a straightforward triangular entrelac shawl several times, but I got a beaded one finished in a quarter of that time. You would think the beaded one would’ve been more difficult.

I’ve made so many of these, I went for something a little different on the picture. So here is Dinosaur modeling this one. It is a Starry Stole from Knitpicks, worked in Shadow yarn in the Midnight colorway with silver-lined, clear beads. As I have done on all the others, I added a third full repeat to make it more scarf-length.

I’m finally re-doing the christmas scarf, hopefully to be done with it soon. That one may turn into a bit of a tutorial. It sure has taught me quite a few things.

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Two Weeks Vacation

I thought I would’ve gotten more done. Truly, I did, because I am completely insane, apparently. I went a lot of places, but didn’t make much progress on any projects I had hoped to complete.

That complaint out of the way, I did at least finish one project, which was technically three projects. The final three scarves are officially finished as of the first two days of my “vacation”. Took until the end of the week to get pictures, but I am finally finished with everything.

They are all from the Starry Stole pattern from Knit Picks with a few modifications: one extra full repeat and the beads are added by crochet hook instead of being pre-strung.

More specific information about each scarf on their Ravelry pages:

The yarn for the pink I dyed myself and it came out with a nice mottled/stripey effect. It doesn’t show up well in the photos, unfortunately, so you just have to trust me when I say it looks really cool.

You’ll get to see more of my vacation “adventures” all this week, while I desperately try to finish my 400 stitches project I started over a year ago. I’m totally in a finishing mood lately, even though I want to start some new things. I just feel like I want to get these super-long-term projects out of my list.

Am I Making This Easier?

I’m currently using my “both sides at once” technique to make three scarves at a time. Because, in my brain, I’m only having to do the row once, rather than doing it six separate times.

Not only does this lead to very full needles, but things can get a little messy. Try as I might to keep the strings nice and untangled, like this:

it usually looks like this in a matter of minutes:

Which means I am having to stop and untangle them every few rows just to keep going. I’m probably not helping myself as much as I think I am by doing this. In fact, I know I’m not. But I have the delusion that this is making me be able to get everything done quicker. So I’m going to keep believing it wouldn’t just be faster to do this one at a time. Even though it most likely would.

Kool-Aid Does What? (Dyeing Yarn With Drink Powder)

I’m fairly certain everyone has had some form of Kool-Aid in their lives. Which is why it is almost slightly disturbing to find out that it works so well as a fiber dye. Not that that means I will stop drinking the stuff, of course.

Not being able to find the correct shade of yarn to make my next Starry Stole, I decided to try dyeing my own. I was going to order some acid dyes, until I saw this tutorial on Kool-Aid dyeing on the Knit Picks website.

The blank yarn came last week, so I picked up some Market Pantry Sugar Free Strawberry Lemonade mix (which turned out to be a pretty color, but totally the wrong shade), because Target doesn’t actually carry powdered Kool-Aid anymore, apparently. I started by washing the yarn in the sink:

I used the Yarn Harlot washing method of tossing the yarn on top of the soapy water and letting it sink on its own. I just let it go until I remembered it was in the sink and realized the dog hadn’t peed on the carpet and that was just the wet wool in the sink.

I mixed a bit of the drink powder with some water, put the yarn on top, and filled the rest of the dish with water. The next step is microwaving it in spurts until the color is all soaked into the yarn, like this:

After letting it cool, I rinsed it, washed it again, and let it dry on the sink.

I was supposed to make this a very pale pink. It didn’t exactly work out. I mixed up Strawberry Lemonade and Pink Lemonade in my mind. So now I have ordered two hanks of the blank yarn, one to use to test out the colors and one to actually dye once I find the right shade.

As for this flamingo yarn, I’m thinking an overdye with some light blue to get me to a purple/blue variegated-esque yarn to turn into some sort of scarf or shawl. Undecided right now, but I have a few other projects to finish before I start something that doesn’t really have a specific purpose.

Coastal Starry

I made my first starry stole for one of my grandmothers for Christmas. I was hoping to have two done by Christmas time, but like most of my plans to make presents that didn’t pan out.

I bought the Oregon coast colorway of Knit Picks Shadow thinking it would be a much lighter,more neutral color from the picture on the website. I am actually very happy that it turned out darker than I expected. The color is similar to beach sand (hence the Oregon Coast name) with subtle rainbow-esque variations within the colors.

After making the first one, I decided that the rest of these (of which there will be four) should be a little longer than the pattern calls for. I did four repeats of the full chart rather than the three called for in the pattern. That gave it a bit extra length to be wrapped like a scarf:

or to actually be wrapped around the shoulders when worn as a shawl:

Unfortunately, this meant I needed more beads than I ended up with, due to quite a few beads that were unusable for the project. Either the holes were too small or they didn’t even have holes. Whatever the case, I had to improvise. Luckily, by doing both sides at once I was able to put the different beads directly in the center so they are all directly in the back and it won’t be noticeable. Though I did have some gold beads that made it less noticeable, anyway.

I really like the way it came out with the added length, so I am going to do that for the last two as well. Makes it easier to keep it on the shoulders.