04/07/15: Spring. At last.

Winter was a month too long this year. Now that the worst seems to be behind us, customers are coming in with FOs galore, proof that when the going gets tough, the tough cast on. Let’s start with an inspiring almost-finished FO from Jess. She stopped in to show us her first sock in progress – she was so excited! When I asked her what cast on she’d used for her toe-up sock, she replied, “Judy Becker’s Magic Cast-On. It was so easy!” Music to my ears.

Steph picked up a skein of madelinetosh tosh dk on Saturday afternoon and by Sunday lunch time was half-finished with her Honey Cowl, with plans to finish by dinner. Designer Antonia Shankland probably couldn’t have zipped through one so quickly.

Portia, another young’un who makes even lace knitting look easy, modeled her Valois Shawl for us the other day. Her yarn is Malabrigo Sock. The Alexandra Beck pattern comes from Knitscene Accessories 2013. Can you see the tiny beads winking along the hem?

Brigid’s Daybreak Shawl* from Stephen West is all ready for spring. Her madelinetosh merino light is just warm enough for nights with a bit of chill still in them.

Brigid finished her class project of the Seamless Baby and Toddler Wrap by Suzie Fry with two “mod” buttons hiding comfy snaps. The yarn is Rowan Pure Wool.

For my slightly smaller version of the same pattern, I used Cascade 220 Superwash Sport on US 5s, adding stripes and an I-Cord tie as a closure.

Shelly knows transitional weather is perfect for ponchos… or is it ponchos are perfect for this weather? Either way, High Plains* by Melissa Schaschwary has quite the fan club here at GYI. Shelly knit hers in Rowan Pure Wool and will be very comfortable until the May flowers arrive.

Francie made a Simple Luxury Giant Shawl for her daughter. This may be our first FO selfie! Worn wrapped as a cowl, all that super softness is thanks to Manos del Uruguay Maxima held together with Shibui Silk Cloud on US 15s.

Francie also gave the headband version of the 1898 Hat an upgrade with a lining of Hikoo Cariboo “fun fur” inside Manos del Uruguay Maxima. After seven months of what the weatherman last night called “perceptible snow,” if anything could make me nostalgic for winter, it would be this.

Catherine knit our shop sample of the impossibly squishy Caribou Blanket* in pinks and purples and enjoyed it so much she cast on again right away for a “boy version.”

Time for some in-house FOs, starting with a classic “why didn’t I think of that?” idea for a scarf:

  • Start with yarn and needles of your choice (how often do you hear that?)
  • Cast on twice the number of stitches for the width scarf you want
  • Join to work in the round and knit to the length you want
  • If you don’t want stockinette’s slight curl at the ends, begin and end with a few rounds of garter stitch, seed stitch, or ribbing
  • Bind off

We can’t think of a simpler way to knit a scarf! Longstocking Muffler, our gift to you with yarn purchase, follows this basic recipe. If you’re not a sock knitter, this is your chance to play with jazzy self-patterning sock yarns. Pom poms optional.

Fine Tune* by Joji Locatelli is a great way to use up 50 yard leftovers of fingering/sock weight yarns. Jill chose Wonderland Cheshire Cat in “Too Much Pepper” as her background yarn, madelinetosh tosh merino light for her stripes.

Up close and lovely:

Finally, a pattern from Kirsten Kapur, Moulin Rouge*, that made an appearance in a recent email and was the project in a recent class. Dreamy Berroco Folio’s superfine alpaca/rayon mix is as soft and luxurious as cashmere. Moulin Rouge knits up quickly, an entertaining mix of a feather and fan lace section and an eyelet section shaped by short rows. An ideal summer project, both to knit and to wear.

Note: Patterns marked with an asterisk (*) are available for sale at Gosh Yarn It!


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