Monday, December 10, 2007
The End of the Endless Scarf and other tall tales
First, here is a photo of the completed socks that I mentioned in my last post. As you may be able to tell, they look remarkably like socks. They function like socks. I am pleased.
I don't make all that many socks at the finer gauges. I like making and wearing thicker socks. These 8+ stitch per inch socks are lovely, but not as warm as the 5 stitch per inch quickies. I don't usually wear socks with regular street shoes, so thinness is not usually an issue. It is fun to make the finer gauge socks as well as the larger-gauge ones. I'm going to make a few more pairs, interspersed with some of the thicker socks.
I finished the diagonal garter stitch scarf. That's a photo of it above, in all its variegated clown-barf colored glory. Autumn-colored sounds better than clown-barf, but the phrase, once introduced, has a certain unforgettable vividness.
I'm not sure of the exact finished dimensions, but it's something like 6 feet long by 6 inches wide, give or take a bit. I used about 400 yards of this worsted-weight yarn. Since it was all garter stitch, and since I re-knit half of it, it seemed to take quite a bit longer than necessary. I'm glad it's done. I'm tired of doing diagonal garter stitch for now.
I used the following diagonal garter stitch scarf pattern variation, mentioned way back when I first wrote about this project.
Cast on 3 stitches.
Increase row: knit the first stitch, knit in front and back of the next stitch, knit to end of row.
Repeat the increase row until the scarf is wide enough (measured along the selvedge edge).
Decrease row: knit 1, knit 2 together, knit to end of row.
Alternate an increase row with a decrease row until the scarf is long enough, or you're just about out of yarn or patience.
Then, do decrease rows until you're back down to 3 stitches.
Cast off. Hide ends. Admire. Swear off garter stitch for a while.
Here is a close-up of the scarf, showing the stitch pattern and how it interacts with the variegated yarn. You can also see the ever-so-lovely selvedge. I knit the first stitch of every row. Big deal. It's a good choice for garter stitch, though.
I do like the way diagonal garter stitch looks with this variegated yarn. It almost looks like tapestry or needlepoint or something. Or maybe clown barf.
The scarf is a good length and width for wrapping around my neck and face. It is warm and soft. We're expecting snow tonight and tomorrow. The scarf may well get its first workout this week.
Now I am all out of travel projects. Yikes! What shall I cast on for my next travel project? It should be something that's on a circular needle, even if it's knit back and forth. It should have shortish rows or be totally circular, so I can put it down with very little notice. It should be relatively mindless.
Another shawl? Even the flat-knit ones can start out as travel projects, though they become house projects after they get large enough. I already have several circular-knit ones -- the usual pi shawls, spiral shawls, square shawls, doily shawls, etc., that any long-time knitter ends up having around the house. I could always use more, I suppose.
A hat? Another scarf? A plain sweater? (As opposed to the one with the cable up the front, which requires keeping track of where I am in the cable pattern.) A moebius thing?
The moebius thing has me thinking and plotting, since the moebius I've been wearing lately proved to have a few flaws when worn during a hike this past weekend. The weather was cold and foggy, with snow and some wind. The snow and ice encrusted on the outside of the moebius got my chin rather wet and cold whenever the wind blew. Given the temperatures and the wind chill factor, this was less than pleasant. Clearly, the design needs a bit of work. It's pretty reasonable for shoveling snow, and for hiking in less windy and/or snowy weather. I need something that will also work in yuckier weather.
One possibility is simply to make it a bit smaller in diameter. If it's a bit more snug, it won't blow around as much in the wind. Another possibility is to make a simple tube rather than a moebius. Those often go by the name of smoke ring or neck gaiter or wimple. It would keep my neck warm, yet I could pull it over my ears and lower face if necessary.
I'm doing research now -- online searches, checking out books, asking friends. Then it will be time to experiment and decide what works best for me. Perhaps I'll need several, depending on weather conditions and the social occasion.
In addition to the above, I've been working on my current socks, another toe-up pair at a relatively fine gauge. The sweater is coming along slowly, and ditto for the doilies. I've been in the mood for mittens and hats, so no doubt I'll soon be casting on for either a hat or mittens or both.