I am back in the cabling groove, but I still need a project for all the times I multi-task knit. Drift’s Ridge , by Teresa Gregorio, is that project. Since it’s knit top-down, I only had to think about increases and color work for the yoke, then it’s long stretches of stockinette. Usually a fingering project feels like it drags on forever to me, but this is moving along quickly.
I know the beautiful Charlemont kettle dye yarn is spurring me forward. I love working with it. It’s merino and silk, with subtle color changes, that is so nice to work with. I usually just go cheap and safe with Wool of the Andes or another less expensive yarn for my sweaters, because I’m budget minded. Not that Charlemont is super expensive. It’s a Valley Yarns line and can often be had on sale. I think I payed $11 per hank for these. To me, however, it feels like luxurious knitting. I scan through madelinetosh and indie dyer yarns online, all the time, like the other knitters I know. I imagine the things I could make with the beautiful tonal colors, but I rarely buy them. Budget minded can = grouchy.
Actually, I don’t mind going cheap that much. Everyday, inexpensive yarn makes sense for sweater quantities, but there’s also a freedom to knitting with whatever you can get. I mean I have knit some things I get tons of compliments on in the cheapest of yarns. Observe the Wool Ease Beatnik. That one was under $15. Then there was the Wool of the Andes Road to Golden. It was my first time to knit Fair Isle as well as my first time to use WotA. After knitting that, I first noticed the “hearts” a project could collect on Ravelry from other knitters. It’s still one of my most loved projects, second only to Ravello, knit in… you guessed it… Knit Picks sale yarn. Good grief, the Aidez I’m working on will look good even when I’m schlepping around in my pajamas and it’s knit in 100% acrylic, people!
Aside from the practicality, I feel a connection to other crafters in my family when I use budget yarn. My grandmother crocheted afghans and booties from whatever acrylic they carried at the TG&Y. She said my grandfather’s mother (her future mother-in-law) hand-sewed her sons’ clothing so expertly, with inexpensive fabrics, that she’d assumed they were wealthy enough to have a tailor. Only after they began dating did she discover their secret. My father remembers his mother making his and his brother’s shirts out of old flour sacks. I don’t think yarn snobbery is a genetic possibility for me.
Even so, I will enjoy knitting with my silk blend, sipping an iced beverage and lounging about this Friday afternoon. That means I’ve poured this morning’s leftover coffee over ice and am knitting on the couch in yoga pants, with frizzy hair, to the sound of whatever’s on netf
But the yarn… the yarn is very, very fancy.