It’s colorwork season over here, y’all. (And knitalong season, obviously!) I’m finally sailing through my Laurus from the Fringe Hatalong Series — but I flubbed it! I was knitting while socializing the other evening, looked down at one point and realized I had knitted the final colorwork row all wrong. It’s just a few rows of stockinette back, so I’ll rip it soon and finish it up. I forgot how fast a plain ol’ stockinette hat knits up! Even with a few rows of colorwork thrown in.
And of course the big sweater on my needles at the moment is my Cowichan-style Knitalong vest, up top.
Honestly, I was a little perplexed about this vest. I chose grey, black and ivory for the “color” scheme because it’s my failsafe. But as much and as long as I’ve been wanting a Cowichan-style vest, I honestly wasn’t sure how I would wear it. (Which troubles me, given my “don’t make it or buy it until you know how it fits in” rule.) Over the weekend, I was plotting out some sewing projects, sketched a simple top-and-skirt combo for some plaid fabric I’ve been dying to sew up, realized the vest will look amazing with those two pieces — worn in various combinations with other things — and now I can hardly stand the wait. After casting on the ribbing Sunday night, I realized I don’t think I’ve ever been this eager to see a project develop. Fortunately, it shouldn’t take long!
I mentioned last month that I’m not planning a Rhinebeck Sweater, per se — this vest will be my Rhinebeck sweater. But there is one other thing I’d like to have for my Rhinebeck trousseau, which is that Linda scarf I’ve been talking about for months on end. I still want it in what’s left of my stash of camel-colored Shibui Merino Alpaca. So as soon as I finish Laurus, that will be next on the needles. I realize a whole scarf is almost as ambitious as a sweater (coming from one who has never knitted a whole scarf before) and Rhinebeck is only three weeks away — and I have a vest to knit! — but I’m fantasizing about it anyway. No pressure, Karen!
PREVIOUSLY in Queue Check: August 2015
Nice Que! very similar to mine actually – I’ve got “Linda” in a coralish, pinkish red in the line up with the KAL vest too!
speaking of the Cowichan style vest – it has inspired some good conversations within my kntting group (who are all doing the KAL). We have a question for you (or anyone else out there). The company that is putting out the pattern, are they contributing any of the proceeds from sales of the pattern, to a Coast Salish knitters organization (if one even exists)? If they are NOT, we are considering finding an organization (if we can) and making a contribution for the price of a normal pattern (since the pattern is being offered FREE), to feel better about knitting this one up!
any suggestions for a Coast Salish knitters organization we could contribute to? Or, maybe Peirrot is already doing the right thing???
thanks for your help with this!
Hi, Marci. Pierrot doesn’t have any involvement in the knitalong — I’ve sent them a heads-up that it’s happening but haven’t gotten any response. It’s not organized with them in any way; it’s just a pattern I found on the internet, wanted to knit, and have invited you all to knit with me. However, even if Pierrot were involved, as you’ve mentioned, there are no proceeds from pattern sales, as it’s a free pattern. So nobody is making any money on the knitalong — it’s just something I’ve organized for fun and education. It’s also not a Coast Salish pattern, of course, it’s a Japanese pattern inspired by the Cowichan style. To my knowledge, the Coast Salish don’t create or sell patterns. I’d love it if they did!
That said, if you’d like to make a donation to a Coast Salish group of some kind, I think that’ s a lovely gesture. I don’t have any idea what the options might be but will see if I can find anything out.
Thanks for your response, Karen. Happy for the discussion and the introduction to this group of women (coast salish knitters), happy you found the pattern and shared it with us – looking forward to selecting yarn and casting on! I did find an organization Cowichan Valley Arts Council that might be a good choice for a donation – checking in w them to see if they work with this history or modern day knitters preserving the traditions of the coast salish knitters etc.
as always – Inspired!
I missed somewhere along the line that you’re going to Rhinebeck. Yay! Just wondering if you’re having a booth or going as a spectator?
Just as a spectator! From what I hear, it’s impossible to get a booth there. Maybe someday! But I’ve never even been, so this is my first chance to check it out.
How exciting, you’ll love it! I’m hoping to go, perhaps we’ll bump into each other. Have a great time!!
I’ll keep an eye out for you!
I’m also hoping to finish in time to wear to Rhinebeck!
I’ve been thinking about doing a Linda in Shibui Merino Alpaca as well! But I wonder- how do you think the fringe will hold up? I once made a swatch with this yarn and the plies of my tail end were getting all untwisted…however, it could just have been that I was handling it too much. Thoughts?
That’s a good question! I don’t know. Honestly, part of my fascination with this pattern is that, the way it’s constructed, I can’t understand how it can possibly hold together. I’m kind of dying to see how it works, but maybe a large test swatch is in order.
I suppose you bind off the main part of the scarf, but not the five stitches at either end – since they’re left as live loops, it’s easy to drop the stitches down and unravel the edges? Then the resulting loops are used to block the fringe straight, and after blocking the loops are cut. (You can see the blocking in action here: http://www.ravelry.com/discuss/quince–co/3152597/1-25#18 )
I guess the resulting fringe is exactly like the fringe on an in-the-round swatch worked flat – the rule where stitches want to unravel vertically but resist unravelling horizontally is at play (much like in steeking). Tights get vertical runs, not horizontal ones, you know?
Yeah, that is exactly how it’s done. But like you’re saying, I see it as the equivalent of an in-the-round swatch in the end, and we all know how messy those edge stitches are. So I’m puzzled at how this could really work out!
So I knit a Linda (highly recommend!), and out of cotton no less, and I was very apprehensive about the edge stitches unraveling. About halfway through the scarf, I tried a test swatch, since I’d come up with a possible fix in case the unraveling thing was a problem. Verdict: I liked my fix better (so that’s what I did on the scarf), but the edge of my swatch that was finished as directed has held up fine through bouncing around at the bottom of my knitting bag for a couple months. And the fringe on my swatch was much shorter than what the pattern calls for, because I experimented with different ways of trimming it evenly (that’s actually the biggest challenge in the pattern, IMO!)
That said, I’m really glad I ultimately went with my own variation on the edge finish, because it makes the fringe on my scarf, in my yarn, much tidier, and I find it beautiful in itself. Happy to supply details if anybody’s curious! (I’ve been terribly negligent about keeping my rav projects up to date recently, or else I’d link there :-/)
I’d love to hear more about what you did to the edges.
It was pretty simple — before I dropped the stitches for the fringe, I ran a line of slip stitch crochet in the “gutter” between the last un-dropped-stitch column and the first dropped-stitch column. I worked a stitch in each space between running strands of yarn.
I was knitting with two finer strands of yarn held together (which yields deliciously fluffy fringe), so I used only a single strand for the crochet stitches, and a hook similar in size to my needles. If you were knitting with a single strand of heavier weight yarn, you might want to use a finer yarn for the crochet. The scarf has a (subtle) right-side and wrong-side, and I worked my crochet so that the tops of the crochet stitches (the Vs that look like a mini stockinette column) were on the wrong side. This makes the crochet stitches practically invisible on the right side, while they make an attractive, narrow edging column on the wrong side.
On my test swatch, the fringe on the as-directed edge has a tendency to sort of droop or slant in one direction, and the last column of un-dropped stitches gets a bit wonky in spots. The fringe on crochet-treated edges lies much more tidily and horizontally, and the last un-dropped stitch columns are pristine. (It’s so pretty, I wish I could show a photo!)
However, both edge treatments are secure. I forgot to mention this before, but since I was knitting with cotton, I also ran my swatch through the washer and dryer (to measure the vertical shrinkage). Between that and kicking around the bottom of my knitting bag, I gave it quite the workout!
That scarf is so beautiful!
Make one! You won’t regret it! (Lol sorry, that pattern has turned me into a total evangelist… I never repeat patterns and I think I might have to make myself another!)
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