Posted by: Kim | January 21, 2007

Admitting it’s just not going to work out

In order to combat the mental numbness from the baby blanket project, I decided yesterday to allow myself to start a small project with more interesting detail.  This would be my alternate project that I could jump to for refuge when I felt myself reaching for that tape measure every half-inch.  The rule was it had to come from my stash/project list.  So, here’s how the decision process worked.

  1. I really wanted to start Lady of the Lake, but as it’s a cardigan and rather large undertaking, I didn’t want to totally distract myself from the blanket.  That’s out. 😦
  2. I’ve run out of Noro Kureyon for the Lizard Ridge afghan, as I already used my stash of eight skeins.  Until I finish another eBay binge, that’s out.
  3. Ooh, I have three different hanks of sock yarn waiting in the wings (Cherry Tree Hill Supersock, Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Sock, and Colinette Jitterbug).  Those would be smaller and more interesting!  No, wait.  I told DH that the next pair of socks off the needles would be his.  Never mind.
  4. That left me with the Backyard Leaves scarf.  It’s small.  There’s a charted pattern.  This will work.

I dug through my stash to find the Knit Picks Alpaca Silk yarn in Leaf that I had decided to use on this pattern.  That took so long that it lead to a “stash reorg” in the afternoon.  I finally got my yarn wound, gauge swatch knit (dead on!), and I excitedly sat down with the chart in my lap.

Now, I made this scarf a year ago as a gift for Muff.  I used the Karabella Aurora 8 in black, and I was so happy with how it turned out.  The body of the yarn was perfect for showing off the detail of the leaves.  I wanted to keep it for myself!  But, I sent it off to her, knowing I had the Alpaca Silk and that it would feel heavenly around my neck when I finally got around to this project.

After the third time of knitting the first 10 rows, I had to admit to myself that this yarn was not going to work with this pattern.  And it wasn’t even due to gauge–I was on!  The yarn itself was too “soft” to really do justice to the detail in the stems on the leaves.  I knew how it could look with that Karabella and it just wasn’t the same.  After the third frog, I realized I needed to find another pattern.  (Sorry, no pics.  I didn’t have the patience at that moment to do it.)

I happened to pick up “Cables Untangled” by Melissa Leapman yesterday for a completely different reason, but the answer was inside.  The Simple Hat and Scarf!  I cast on immediately and was really happy to see that this yarn worked much better for the cables.

Simple Hat and Scarf SetSimple Scarf swatch

And, by the way, I have to put a plug in for this book.  It has gorgeous patterns, is full of great information on cable how-to’s and has a really nice glossary of cable patterns if you feel like trying to make up your own.

So now I have my sanity project, and the Backyard Leaves pattern will be resurrected when I find the right yarn.  This just goes to show that not all yarns work with all patterns, even if the gauge is right.



  1. i frogged my “backyard leaves” scarf awhile ago. I was making it as a gift also, and I just lost patience. I like the pattern you chose instead. It’s kinda reminiscent of the Irish Hiking scarf from HelloYarn that I love sooooo much.

  2. Ribbit….Ribbit…

    (Damn Muggles)

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