Thursday, April 04, 2013

Holiday Knitting

Travel - especially journeys with long plane/car/train trips - are excellent opportunities for knitting.

We had all of the above on the trip to the UK - plane there and back, of course, plane up to Aberdeen and back; various train journeys in the London area, including a day trip to Brighton, and some longish car rides in the Aberdeen area. Perfect.

In the days before I left, I had the usual "what knitting should I take" panic... socks, of course, but I wanted something else, too.

A conversation with Brenna at Lettuce Knit got me thinking...

In the fall of 2005, I knitted a garter stitch scarf with Kidsilk Haze, and although I loved the result, the process nearly killed me.

I absolutely adore mohair, and it's always galled me that I'd had a bad experience with it. I should love these fine silk/mohair blends, as they are incredibly light and incredibly warm. Perhaps it was time to try again.

There was a partial ball of this yarn in the scrap bucket, so with Brenna's encouragement I decided to give a go.

I knew that whatever I did, it had to be simple - for successful knitting in low-light and low-sleep situations, and I wanted a basic go-everywhere, wear-with-everything result. I thought about a big rectangle, but at that gauge that would have been a lifetime's worth of knitting.

It look me a few goes to land on the pattern I wanted, but I ended up with a tip-up triangle shawl in garter stitch. Easy as possible. It was the clever Rosa's suggestion to start with a few stitches already cast on (rather than at the very tip), to change the geometry a little.

I made sure I had plane-friendly needles - I chose Chia Goo bamboo circulars as they have surprisingly good points for non-metal needles. And I remembered from my previous experience that you need a good point.

Using 4.5mm needles, I cast on 45 stitches and starting working... every row: kfb, k to end.

Easy. No need to keep track of the rows; no need to keep track of stitches. It didn't matter if I ended up with a stitch too many or too little.

I started a couple of days before I left,

and worked on it all through the holiday...

over drinks both hot and cold...

and cast off on the plane on the way home. Exactly 2 balls of the KidSeta gives a shawl about 24 inches deep and 66 inches across at the top edge. It's blocking now, and should be dry enough for me to wear tonight when I head out to teach.

I do have a third ball of the yarn in the stash, and I plan to wear this for a bit to see if I like the size... am thinking I might add a border along the lower edge...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

My Mom wanted to bring her knitting on to the plain from Germany to Florida and they told her she couldn't . Not even her wooden circular needles. I'm glad you were able to knit cause I know a trip like this on a plane with that many hours can be pretty boring.