Colour steps

So I said in my crafty resolutions that I wanted to try some colourwork projects. Now I will confess, my only real experience with colour work (other than contrast heels and toes on socks) is a very ill conceived attempt at an intarsia sweater when I was a teenager. It involved mohair, a fox pattern, batwings (it was the eighties!) and basically was a project way above my knitting paygrade. It never got finished (as my mother who paid for the yarn at the time still likes to remind me) and I kind of swore off colour work (come to think of it that was possibly the project that put me off knitting way back when too!).

But when my sil was over for the Bendigo Sheep and Wool show, she showed me a DVD of someone doing two handed fair isle (this is an extract of it…it’s a Canadian company called Philosopher’s wool). And it was kind of intriguing even though my brain went “what, how, crazypants”. (And yes, we watch knitting DVDs. Knitting nerds, unite!)

I will admit that a lot of Fair Isle I look at and think wow, amazing work, but it’s a bit too busy for my personal taste. But I have been stumbling over color work patterns on Ravelry that I like so it seemed like time to give it a go (I’m still avoiding Intarsia like the plague). Being my usual Virgo self, I ordered a book or two on the subject (Virgos must READ ALL THE THINGS and KNOW ALL THE STUFF before starting something) then determined that I would order some yarn for a hat pattern in one of the books. In the meantime, I wanted to practice, so I trotted off to the LYS and got three balls of wool and decided to knit the sampler purse pattern from the Philosopher’s Wool page I linked to. Only in eight ply. Because the thought of trying to manage multiple balls of yarn and teeny needles seemed liable to do my head in.

Anyway, this is how far I’ve gotten so far (about three quarters-ish)

Not too bad. The tension seems okay and I figured out not to change the order in which the yarns come over or under after the first five rows or so. And that row near the top with white blue white blue white blue. I totally knitted that using the two handed technique! My continental tensioning continues to suck but I shall work on it as it’s definitely faster than wrangling both yarns in my right hand. Best of all, I’m quite enjoying it! See what happens when you try stuff?

So when my hat yarn arrives I’ll be ready to dive in. My only thought with the whole stranded colour work is that it essentially produces a double thickness knitted fabric, which is going to be maybe TOO warm for Aussie conditions. Then again, I am the chick who feels cold when everyone else is warm, so maybe that’s a good thing.

So, one resolution progressing. My ankle is mending so hopefully I can get back into the spinning soon too! And in a fit of madness, I have signed up for Nerd Wars on Ravelry…eagerly awaiting my team assignment, so I have to make at least one project a month for the next few months.