Tuesday, 30 October 2012

New Autumn accessories

One of my favourite things about Fall is knitting myself new accessories. You would think after six years of obsessive knitting I would have enough scarves, hats and gloves/mittens. And indeed I do have several baskets full, but there is always room for more.

What usually happens is this: attempting to get out of my usual colour rut (ie green), I buy a luscious yarn in a colour I haven't used before. But because I'm just testing the waters I don't buy enough for a full garment -  just enough to make a small accessory - and then I have to buy more yarn to make the rest of the accessory set to match. And so the vicious yarn buying and knitting cycle continues.

Usually I start with a cowl. My first this year was Hypotenuse, by Olga Buraya-Kefelian, with a simple repeating geometric pattern. I was tempted to knit it in the suggested Shibui Knits Staccato, but it would have cost over £50, which is crazy for a cowl, so I plunged into my stash.

I surfaced with two skeins of Old Maiden Aunt silk/alpaca DK that I bought at last year's KnitNation. Gorgeous stuff, in pale sea green with a brownish halo. A very unusual colour.

So unusual that absolutely nothing else in my wardrobe or stash goes with it. Thus I was forced (quite against my will, I assure you) to buy more yarn. I found some gorgeous dark chocolate-brown Blue Sky Alpacas Royal Petites (mmmmm soft) and orange-red Zeilana Kiaora Rimu DK (mmmmm possum) at the ultra chic Nina in Chicago. I was surprised to discover that the colours went well with the cowl, and voila, new accessory set sorted.

The Royal Alpaca Countess mitts feel more like cashmere,
and the merino/possum Zealana Kiaora gives my
Snapdragon tam a gorgeous halo

Once that set was completed, I immediately moved on to another ensemble. The year before last I had bought several skeins of yarn at KnitNation specifically for a red accessory set.

You can see a theme developing here, can't you?

KnitNation (which sadly did not occur this year due to the blasted Olympics), is held in London in late summer, when the weather in England is already changing, we are thoroughly fed up with another sorry excuse of a summer, and we're desperate to move on to Fall knitting. I can never resist buying yarn for accessories there.

I knit a lace scarf out of my prize purchase that year - two skeins of heavenly soft and warm Quivik. But I wasn't happy with the result - my lace pattern was not open enough because I used too small needles, and besides I don't really wear scarves very much, preferring cowls or shawls. So I frogged it and knit the simple but effective Mira's cowl instead.

I had planned to knit a pair of Bobbie gloves with the pomegranate Woolmeise yarn I also bought, but it became a hat instead. Which has since been frogged as well, and I finally started Bobbie last week. See, I get to things eventually!

The gloves are knit in linen stitch, and will have
applied i-cord piping around the bottom and wrist

I've got a bright red, tweedy yarn in my stash for a hat, but I haven't settled on a pattern yet. I'm considering Helmet head from Vogue Knitting Holiday 2011.

© Vogue Knitting

I also really like the Fellowes cloche from the Woolen Rabbit Yarn Club. But sadly this pattern is not going to be available for general purchase until April next year. Though considering my rate of project completion, that might suit my schedule perfectly!

© splityarn

Maybe I'll knit Helmet head, and then next year I can frog it and use the yarn for the Fellowes cloche. Sometimes it takes several tries before a yarn finds its perfect pattern.