Friday, February 13, 2009

Stuff. With a side of thingies.

I finished the Faux Russian Starf. (Stole plus scarf equals starf.) It is twenty inches wide by seven feet long, and so it hovers between stole and scarf sizes. If you pull it wider, it gets shorter. If you pull it longer, it gets narrower. Truly one size fits all.

These photos are blurry because, to get the color right, I had to go with no flash, and for me to stand still without swaying on this medication is like having the earth stop spinning. I like how it turned out. And I don't think the beads screw with the traditionality of the whole thing. Sort of adds some sparkle without being obnoxious or overpowering.

There was some question about the name and structure of this, and I'll attempt to explain. The reason it's Faux Russian is because it's based on Orenburg lace, but the materials (and I don't think patterns) are terribly traditional for the Orenburg laces. (Orenburg uses a combination of silk and 'goat down'. The pattern calls for Jameson & Smith jumper-weight.)

As for the structure, well, here it is.

You cast on the edging, with something provisional (red jiggies on the photo). Knit the edging sideways (as it turns out), blue arrow. Then you leave the edging stitches on your needle, and pick up stitches for the body of the scarf all along the just-knit edging, yellow arrow. When you arrive at the provisional cast-on, you pick it out and put those stitches on the needle, too - yellow wavy line. Then you knit upward, both edgings and the body, all at once - green arrows. At the other end (I didn't take a photo, they look the same), you knit the edging sideways onto the raw body stitches, then at the other edge, you graft the two edgings together. I think mathematically you're doomed to be off by a row so there's a barely noticeable line in the edge where the graft is, but it's such a neat job, I can't bring myself to care. There's no cast-on edge, and no cast-off, to pull in or wave out or anything; it's a consistent selvage the entire way around the scarf. Really quite clever. I doubt I'll ever knit more Orenburg-ish lace (that damn garter stitch), but I'll likely use the edge trick on some project or other, down the road.


In other news, I'm nearly done (will surely finish tonight, barring natural disasters) with one BSJ, will knit matching booties, and then move on to the Roulette Sock over the weekend. (Pray for the sock. Pray for me over the sock. My lifetime output of socks is, uh, four. So if the pattern is hinkey, I am doomed.) After that, another BSJ and more baby booties.

After that, back to the lace design I'm working on, for submission to somewhere, sometime. And I think the Russian Prime needs bloody well done by now.

I'm getting ready to order the Christmas yarn. Very early this year, but I'd like to get at least ONE of the two Christmas jumpers done this year before we start moving around in September. (Two would be good. But I'm realistic. I'll settle for one.) They will be stranded color. Oh, boy.


Walter Knitty said...

I'd like to make a couple of suggestions for sock patterns if you havent chosen one already. Thuja from Knitty is the first sock I ever knit. It has a couple of benefits. It's simple (44 stitches, mostly stockinette, and every other round is knit 3 purl 1 for a seed stitch pattern down the sock) and can be knit on 4.25mm needles w/cascade 220 superwash. Thick yarn, simple pattern, larger needles, make it go quickly. Also the thick yarn makes the heel stitches easy to see and pick up. The other is "Earl Grey" from the Yarn Harlot (if you google the name it comes right up and it's a free pattern) This is knit with sock yarn and is 72 stitches around but, is mostly stockinette with a mock cable pattern down either side of the sock. Not too bad imho. Remember your rosary and pray along with me. Hail Sock Maiden, full of grace, pray for me now and in my hour of need amen. :) Whatever you decide to do, good luck.

Alwen said...

Yeah, that edge trick is very clever.

This winter's fog seems to be leaving my brain, finally. Maybe I'll actually be able to knit something non-mindless again.

Amy Lane said...

Dude-- socks? For your skills? No problem... my problem right now is color selection--do I go for the totally punk or do I go for the faded denim and purple? The Starf is Stunning! Well done! Lovely!

Mandy said...

I love the starf! I may have to make one for myself, so I have something a little dressy.

I made a "scrap wrap" (or "crap wrap" if you prefer!) a couple of years ago, out of the tail ends of whatever skeins I had used for numerous projects over the years. The colors are lovely (blues, greens, and purple/burgundies), and there's lots of different textures (some plain worsted wool, some faux fur, some ribbon yarn, and some boucle), but my cast-on edge is tighter than my bind-off (a common problem for me), so it looks a little funny. But it's warm and cozy, and that's why I made it - to wrap up in while I knit or watch tv, since I keep my house really cold in the winter! So, anyway, now I want to do something nicer, that I can actually wear out in public. You always make such cool stuff!

Jenn said...

Muahahaha---the starf is MINE!!!!! love, Jenn