Okay, maybe not EVERYBODY. I suppose there are those discerning folk out there who would always rather go the long route if it meant perfecting something beyond measure. And, don’t get me wrong, I am most often drawn to the lure of perfection but, you know, sometimes you just need gratification NOW!
We are talking about knitting, right? LOL.
I’m knee deep in sweater projects, knit skirt projects, blah blah blah. I love sweaters, I really do. And I love sinking my teeth into a project that I have a creative paw on from start to finish. Now, what may come as a surprise to ya’ll is that I talk to people. A lot. I also talk a lot, but that’s neither here nor there. Lately, in talking to people, I’m getting those nervous remarks about stashes of fiber and yarn and not having enough time to make the things we want to make and “I need a new pair of mittens, I lost mine and my hands are so cold” sort of comments. Me thinks it’s time to bring some balance back into my spinning/knitting projects.
I need to make something. I need to have something at the end of a reasonable time period that I’ve finished. It gets me over the humps I’ll stumble upon on the big projects. It makes me excited and able to dream up new projects. And, you know what? It’s even practical! I love it when practical sneaks into my plans because you who know me know I don’t really invite it into my daily life often;P
This quickie project is so simple it almost hurts. I started on Friday night with my wheel in front of me, a cuppa chai, and some Dean Winchester to watch and get me spinning faster (insert goofy heart throbbing sound here). I spun up half of my Happy Hooves Batt Club and half of my Happy Hooves Top Club. I usually let the colors fly on the wheel however they go but this time, I separated the batts and tops to keep the colors rather distinct and then mixed and matched them as I added them to the bobbin. This way, you get to see what ‘Rusty Bridges’ really looks like. It was a tricksy thing to do to my club members, sending them a layered batt and having them think I’d lost my marbles and sent only a silver batt for club. But, when you pull the layers back, you see the rusty bridge colors inside. This colorway was inspired by the same thing most EKF colorways are inspired by – memories. The kids and I took a walk on a back road in our town and found this bridge glimmering in the sunset. It was so lonely and beautiful and somber I couldn’t help standing there gazing at it for too long. The kids got bored and left me in my color dreaming stupor. I snapped out of it when my fingers started to freeze.
Where was I? (talks a lot, you were warned!) Oh, yeah, Friday. Spinning, Dean Winchester, warm cuppa. So, I spun the fibers fine and Navajo Plied them for distinctive color separations. I know you won’t believe this but I did it this way because I actually had a plan and stuck to it (taps foot waiting for those who are giggling to stop and those who scrolled ahead and looked at the pics before reading and, therefore, know this to be true to be able to get up off the floor and regain composure after such a shock). I knew I wanted to spin this and knit it into a Baktus for a few reasons. First and foremost, I’m at the point in my life where- you know, a quickie is not a thing I’d just flippantly turn down. Wait a minute, we’re sticking to the knitting (slaps self) sorry, I forgot! I NEED to make something. And I need to finish it. I need to run over the finish line waving it in the air screaming ‘ yes, yes, yes,’ until I piss off the dog and she starts barking at me and the kids remind me that I am a weirdo. I need this.
Second, and I love sneaky ole practicality – I need a scarf. I have a few treasured shawls, mostly that friends have made and gifted to me because I have a habit of sending my shawls off to live with others with the ends barely woven in. I don’t know what it is about shawl knitting but it just starts at CO and by the time the thing is finished, I’m well aware it is not for me and know who it is going to live with with utter clarity. But, lately I’ve started giving away everything I knit. Seriously. I knit gloves, gave them away. Knit a sweater, sent it on. Knit 2 shawls and we all knew they were doomed from the start, 3 cowls and 2 pairs of socks….gone! I need a scarf and I need to keep something I knit. I’m starting to feel like the knitting Gollum. It’s minnnnne….don’t touches itz!
Thirdly, I may have a Baktus problem. I mean, seriously, it’s not a terribly exciting knit. But, with handspun, hand-dyed yarn???? It sort of becomes fabulous. You can knit it while you’re doing almost anything. All you need do is weigh your ball at the beginning of knitting and divide by half, or, if you are so inclined, split your ball in half at the get go so no future weighing is required. I prefer to get the pain over quick and weigh out 2 balls so there’s no question of when to stop increasing and start decreasing. Then, you knit – simple as that. You knit, increasing on one side until you run out of yarn and knit the second ball decreasing until you’re out of yarn. Easy Peasy. Click on the pattern name to go to the source for better instructions – I’m just explaining to give you a vague idea of how utterly easy this is. The colors, the texture of the handspun, they do all the work for you. You just get to have a few hours of knitting ( I knit this baktus in 5 hrs of really slow and casual knitting – worsted wgt yarn 230 yds) and then that glorious moment of crossing the finish line, quickie in hand, knowing you’ll only feel so drunk on this moment that you’ll likely grab a sketch pad and start designing the most complicated ankle length colorwork sweater ever made but, hey, at least your neck will be warm and you’ll feel like a winner. You might need this:)
And, see, those rusty bridges were hiding in the layers of that batt – there they are! I loved this project!But then you knew I would because I think this is my 7th or 8th baktus. See, I told you I have a problem. I was even starting to creep myself out so I made this a slightly different version – the lacy baktus. A few holes makes is not making the same darned scarf over and over again, right? C’mon, say it’s so.
So, here’s the quick and dirty on the quickie:
Spinning time – 3.5 hrs – 1 skein of 230 yds worsted wgt, Nplied yarn. Navajo plying saves lots of time and really makes your colors pop in a simple knit – try it!
Knitting time – 4-5 hrs – depending on if you account for times I sat my knitting in my lap to really stop and LOOKIE at Dean Winchester. He really needs to be mine, I’d make him loads of sweaters;) I freely admit that I don’t even follow the story lines – I just watch with the kid and pretend I do so they won’t see that I’m all about the eye candy.
See how easy that was? Let’s keep doing it! Let’s say, at least 2 quickies a month? Oh, if only – ahem, strictly limiting it to the fiber arts, I mean. Of course. Some quickies might be sewing, others might be spinning only, felting, I’ll .try to keep it fiber related and mostly clean, mostly. Thing 1 insisted I start taking more pics of my knits actually on someone and then promptly disappeared. She’s a sneaky little thing – she later admitted she meant she wants me to take more pictures of me. Grr. Cameras make me look stoooopid! Yes, I’m blaming the cameras for that – I have no shame;)
What’s your favorite quickie knitting project?