Monday, November 07, 2011

Not my kind of knitting, or is it?

Sometimes it's really good to break out of your routine. When I was in Vermont in early October, I spent a lot of time looking at all of the patterns we sell in the shop. There are SO many of them, and after a while they all tend to look alike. Luckily, I had some time to kill and so I sat and went through a lot of them very slowly and carefully. It's amazing how things look different when you aren't rushed!
I found quite a few things that I really wanted to make. Some of them were things that surprised me, because they're not really my "type" of knitting. I've been knitting long enough that I can do just about anything. But it's all about what I WANT to do.

One pattern in particular intrigued me. Why, I'm not sure... I'm not normally a fan of size 4 needles. And mitered squares are fun, but seriously, I could take them or leave them. I love color changing yarn, for sure, but to have to switch balls so often? And let's not even talk about the ends that need to be woven in on this project.
Despite all these warning signs, the Jojoland Hidden Squares Shawl pattern jumped out and grabbed me. But I was honest with myself. I know my own limitations, and making an 18" x 70" shawl wasn't in the cards. I grabbed half the yarn the pattern called for (1 ball each of 4 colors of Jojoland Melody Superwash yarn) and decided to make it into a scarf, instead.

I cast on last week, after finishing 2 projects on much larger needles (a 15 US and a 10 US). I immediately wondered what mess I had gotten myself into. Size 4 needles are toothpicks compared to 15s and 10s. But I persevered. 

The first two half mitered squares were rough. Part of it was the needle and yarn size, and the other part was that I literally could not see what I was doing. Once I found my reading glasses, things improved quickly.

The technique is quite simple and easy to memorize after the first few shapes. It's a really portable project - all you need are your knitting needles, a tapestry needle, a pair of scissors and the yarn. (And possibly reading glasses!) This project is a lot of fun to make, and the size 4s are actually feeling quite comfortable right now.
To make the finishing bit a little easier, I weave in ends after I've completed 2 half mitered squares. And as you can see, this will benefit from a nice blocking!


Amy said...

I have this pattern and yarn for that (somewhere!). It is beautiful, and I like how you adapted it into a scarf! Very cute :-)

Gecika said...

Kudos for tackling something that's outside of your comfort zone.

It looks like you've started off great, the finished project is going to be lovely!

Karen said...

That is so cool looking!!!! You've got me interested......

CyndyC said...

That would be out of my comfort zone too. Must check it out.