One step forward

Posted by caroline in Knitting, lace, Stashbash on February 2nd, 2012

I had this post all ready to go yesterday, it only needed one photo, but then my afternoon was derailed by emergency cake baking. It appears that the year 7 cake stall (run by the boys, the girls are selling bracelets) was in need of supplies so we made an orange cake and chocolate buns after which I needed a bit of a sit down. The junior baker’s skill set is developing and he does now realise that clearing up and washing the bowls is all part of the job rather than scampering off and leaving me with the eggshells. This is a step in the right direction but his counter-cleaning skills need a bit more work (egg+cloth=big mess).

I spent all of January working with odd balls of leftover yarn so you would expect that I have made big inroads into my target of using up 2012g of old yarn this year. I knitted a pair of mittens and a pink baby jacket from 135g of sock yarn leftovers. That’s better than it sounds because while I was knittingĀ  I wasn’t knitting socks and the leftovers from a pair of socks adds 30g to the bag of scraps. Weaving really rips through yarn because it’s so much faster than knitting. In January I wove five scarves and a bag length and that used 840g.

pboucleIt looks like it should have been a big win except this month I failed to meet my target of 180g. That’s because at the same time as I was dredging odd bits of wool out of the yarn bins I was sticking big cones back in. pacaboucleI’ve tried spinning boucle and decided that it isn’t worth it in terms of time even though it adds so much to woven fabric. The boucle I’ve used as an accent yarn in scarves really lifted the fabric so I can easily justify more (especially when it’s cheap). There doesn’t look to be much here but that’s because there are another seven balls of the navy packed away in a box, the total weight of all the boucle was 880g. Two purchases – 880g, one month’s work on stash reduction – 840g.

I think what we can learn from this is that firstly it’s true that weaving really does use yarn faster than knitting and secondly that I need to stop buying wool if I’m ever to get one of the yarn boxes emptied.

bjacket2I’m still knitting the next two piece baby jacket even though I’ve demonstrated that knitting isn’t a terribly effective way of thinning the stash. The sleeves are done and now I’m knitting towards the neck with the back being on the right of the photo. It’s occurred to me (on a recurring basis) that if I’d made a smaller size I’d have been finished by now, as it is I have an inch to go before I reach the neck and start working the back on its own. When I cast on it seemed to be a good idea to choose a larger size because I had a lot of brown sock leftovers, now I’m not convinced that I’ll have enough yarn to finish it. This is not much of a problem because I had a tidy up at the weekend and found two more bags with sock scraps in, including one with three balls of brown. The next one will be pink and brown unless I’ve died of garter boredom before then. The next one will also be a smaller size, I should remember that a 25″chest at 7 stitches per inch is a decent chunk of knitting and not a couple of evening’s work.

placeI needed a break from odd balls and part skeins so I started knitting the Portland that I spun last week. It’s not been getting much of my knitting time so far even though I like the colour and the beads and everything about it. It’s just my guilt that’s making the baby sweater rise to the top of the knitting heap.