This week I finally sat down with all of my stitch guides and my good friend Google, and I started picking out ideas for the sampler afghan I’m making for my mom. And after I made a few lists and also made a few swatches (thus discovering that I had to discard about half the ideas on my list due to lack of stitches, unless I was willing to make 18 inch squares), I finally cast on for my first square.
I liked the look of the piecrust square, but I knew that this would be the only one done in the round, and thus it would be harder to make it match in size to all my other squares. so I made this one first, and then did some quick measuring, and determined that based on this square, all the others will be 10 inch squares, 45 stitches across.
Next up, a square with little houses (hint – dishcloth patterns are a great source of ideas for sampler afghan squares).
I pulled the patterns for these next two squares from my Barbara Walker Treasuries: Fountain Lace, and Rib and Braid
My fifth square is a little expanded rib pattern I whipped up, inspired by a number of the twist patterns from Barbara Walker’s Treasuries, and from other things I saw online.
Each of the squares doesn’t take much time to do, individually, but it’s a lot of yellow yarn to be staring at, non-stop. So in between making squares, I whipped up a mistake rib scarf for my little sister (made with one skein of amazingly soft Misti Alpaca Chunky), which I neglected to photograph before I sent it off to Seattle with my parents. I also finished off this little hat that was the project for my stranded colorwork class.
It’s supposed to be a baby hat, but we didn’t much worry about gauge, since this was just a ‘teaching’ hat, so it will likely fit a small child. Hmm. Now to add a cute little two-color pom-pom and find a small child to foist it upon.
Amusingly, even though this was the ‘class’ hat, it turned out a lot nicer than the mitten, because this was my second colorwork project, and I had actually learned some valuable lessons from the mitten – things like making sure I paid attention to my tension. So this little hat took far less tugging and twisting to look good than the mitten.
The second day of the class was yesterday, but since I obviously had the whole fair isle concept down, the young woman asked me if there was anything else I wanted to learn. So over the course of a little less than an hour, we went through double knitting – both straight and in the round, connected, and separate. I am now looking forward to giving two socks at once a try (one inside the other). We also went over intarsia, since the only colorwork I’ve done before has been slip stitch patterns, or shadow knitting (which is really just a fancy word for textured stripes) and she figured she might as well cover all the basics. So now I think I’m set. I doubt I’m going to be jumping into any intarsia projects any time soon, since that kind of thing just doesn’t appeal to me, but I am having far too much fun finding colorwork graphs online, and planning out a whole army of mittens that I only have to map out and find yarn for before I can actually start them.
Mittens, that is, that I will be doing in between working on the remaining twenty squares for my mom’s afghan, And mittens that will be started only after I also finishing making Sheldon. Because I really do have a lot more of that blue and brown vintage Paton’s Astra yarn that needs using up, and what better way to do that than to whip up a completely adorable turtle with a removable shell.