Finished Projects: Meggo’s A Bow in the Sky

Ask anyone, I’ve never been known to wear bright colors, despite my healthy appreciate for them on other people. It’s a personal comfort thing created by a combination of growing up in New York (the epicenter of the all-black wardrobe) and not wanting to draw unwanted, or really any, attention to myself in public.

It’s no surprise to anyone that my summer wardrobe is as non-colorful as my winter, including the knitwear accessories. Enter Courtney’s stunning A Bow in the Sky shawl created for LYS Day 2019, full of squishy slip stitch and soothing stripes. The original “skittles” color way is an explosion of joyous bright colors, but even though I love them, I knew that I’d never wear those colors.

Image: Linette Kielinski

Image: Linette Kielinski

We developed four different color way kits for her design based on the teams personal preferences, and mine naturally skewed a bit, um, neutral.

Image by Linette Kielinski

Image by Linette Kielinski

Every intention was made to complete the storm cloud version by TNNA, but I was busy knitting away on new and exciting upcoming designs for our fall collections.

My WIP turned into a soothingly slow, podcast knitting delight (anyone else addicted to true crime podcasts, too?). Our Perennial is so soft, pliable, and smooth that the stitches just floated off my needles, and the simple repetition of the pattern made it easy to relax and listen without complication.

Cut to a month later and my pleasingly neutral, matches-everything-I-own shawl is ready for summer night dining, air conditioned buildings, and scarf wear this fall.

Have you made A Bow in the Sky, too? Share it with us on Instagram by tagging @kelbournewoolens using the hashtag #KWPerennial and #ABowintheSky

Finished Project: Kate's #MojaveSummerKAL Ranunculus

About six weeks ago, we shared the idea for a quick and simple Mojave KAL. Conveniently, that very weekend Courtney and I were about to embark on a 16 hour round trip to Vermont to teach at a knitting retreat.

What is a more perfect time for banging out a cute summer top than 16 hours in a car and a weekend in a hotel with no kids or pets? None that I can think of!

I’ll admit: I was skeptical of this pattern, Ranunculus by Midori Hirose, at first. Not the design, which I think is really lovely - there is a reason why there are over 2,600 projects on Ravelry, and I have wanted one for myself for a while - but because the neck circumference seemed, in a word, impossible. I’m also not a huge fan of yarn knit very, very loosely, and I never knit things top down. But Linda at Knit New Haven was knitting one in Mojave, so I knew it would work, and Courtney basically told me I absolutely had to knit it as written as some sort of cognitive behavior therapy to break me of my color/design/method rut.

I don’t have a ton of “selfish” knitting time as 99.5% of what I do knitting and crochet-wise is designs and samples for publication, so in an effort to actually complete the top, I opted not to work the ribbing as written. (I’m also very stubborn,) Instead, I provisionally cast on the number of stitches after the first set of increases and worked the body before tackling the neck.

The yoke worked up very very quickly, in part thanks to the hours of knitting time we had, and ease of working the pattern. By the time our Vermont weekend was over, I was well past the yoke and whipping through the body. It only took a week or so of sneaking a few rounds in here are there the following week and I found myself with a super cute new summer sweater!

Kate Ranunculus Mojave

I did make a few other mods to the design: I added a few rounds between the raglan increases, didn’t work as many body increases, and knit a few extra yoke rounds to account for my denser row gauge. Finally, I followed Elizabeth’s modifications and worked a twisted ribbing to anchor the sleeves a bit. Once the body and sleeves were complete, I unzipped the provisionally cast on neck stitches, decreased 10 stitches (I still had 20 more stitches than as written for the cast on), and worked the neck in twisted ribbing. The body, neck, and sleeve ribbing are all bound off using a tubular bind off.

Kate Ranunculus Mojave

Start to finish, the sweater took about two weeks to knit, and I have worn it countless times since binding off, including to TNNA, on our recent yearly vacation in Maine, and an event at a local shop! Definitely a successful knit!

Kate Ranunculus Mojave

My favorite way to wear it is with the Grainline Studio Alder Shirtdress (modified with a V-neck and lengthened 8”) that you see in here. Despite the fact that this was the third time I wore this outfit the week we were in Maine, these photos were taken minutes before we got in the car to head back home - I think documenting my finished projects is about as hard as actually finding the time to work on them!


Happy Little Accidents: My Humulus Sweater (Dress)

Did you all watch or grow up with The Joy of Painting with Bob Ross? Well, when I tried on my freshly blocked Humulus his famous phrase was my first thought: “There are no mistakes, only happy little accidents.”

Humulus by Isabell Kraemer called to me from the moment I saw its hop-filled yoke last year. At the time I was still living in Fort Collins, Colorado—the Napa Valley of craft beer. The sweater design and enthusiastic beer lifestyle of Colorado were a perfect pairing. When I moved back to the east coast I decided to make Humulus as a wooly token of my second home. A sheepish text was sent to Kate requesting a sweaters worth of my favorite new Kelbourne yarn, Scout, in graphite heather and natural. A short time later a bag full of squishy Scout was all mine!

The original Humulus is gorgeous, but I needed to modify it for my body type and comfort level. So, I carefully swatched, blocked my swatch, made modifications for a swancho-type fit with deep armholes, a roomy body with ample ease, and a cowl neck. What I didn’t expect was my gauge drastically changing over the four months spent picking up and putting down this project. Clearly, my new Kelbourne lifestyle has suited me well because my gauge got wicked loose.

When I tried on my Humulus after blocking the hemline nearly touched my knees, the armholes were deeper than I intended, but the overall look was surprisingly perfect! The whole sweater-dress-bag look is one I can get on-board with this winter and many winters to follow.

The best element of all is Scout—this sweater-dress is soft enough to wear against my skin (which is quite sensitive) without a wee poke to be felt. Many knitters have used Scout in their Humulus, and I have to say we all couldn’t have picked a better yarn for this design.

Find all the Scout colors and stockists list here. Let me know if you’re making or planning to make a Humulus in Scout, too!