Monday, May 2, 2016

Speckles and Brights and How to Wear the Latest Yarn Craze!

I'm loving the current speckles and brights trend!  I know there is a lot to be said for knitting natural colors for wearability and usefulness yadda yadda yadda.  But when it comes to fun summer knitting you can't beat bright color and if you toss in some speckles it's color and brights and fun oh my oh my!

This shawl practically flew off my needles because it was so mesmerizing watching the yarn flow into a river of colorful fabric.  I am always mindful mind you that I do want to actually wear what I've finished knitting.  So my compromise was to pair this neon pink bright speckled yarn with a rich beautiful solid neutral color.  And I am really happy with my choice.  I think the dark solid blue toned down and gave the bright speckled yarn a sophisticated finish. If I had used another speckled yarn or bright contrasting color I think this could have been a little over the top at least here in Southern California.  Maybe in the Netherlands they are wearing all neon all the time but here in SoCal not so much.

This is a cool new pattern called Breaking Bad and I chose it because I happen to be a fan of the TV show (of the same name) and knitting a neon pink speckled yarn seemed to fit with breaking out of the hum drum colors I've been knitting lately.  Admittedly I've chosen something much more tame than cooking meth (as in the show) but then it is the spirit of the gesture and I can also sleep at nights.

Ah, and I nearly forgot!  Another advantage to using dark navy as a contrasting color is that this is a very denim friendly shawl and will fit easily into a casual lifestyle.  It's interesting.  Because our climate is changing to drier and warmer conditions I find that I wear my shawls more than anything else I've knit.  My new style of dressing is to skip the sweater and style a shawl as either a cowl or scarf and I'm good to go.  At least that's the way I wear my shawls.  If you want to see some hilarious tips on how to wear your shawls check out Stephen West's video How to Wear Your Shawl.

Particulars: Breaking Bad Shawl designed by Jessica Anderson (blog: All in a Day's Fun)  1 skein Hedgehog Fibers, Twist Sock, 399 yrds/100g (colorway Miami Nights) 1 skein The Plucky Knitter, Primo Fingerling, 390 yrds/101g (colorway Bohemian Blue).  I slightly modified the pattern at the start so that CC rows 26-31 are stockinette (versus garterstitch) as I think these stitches look best in stockinette.  I also twisted the yarns together intarsia style to prevent any gaps in the fabric in the early segments where the yarn changes color in the middle of the row.  Lastly I shortened the edge ribbing to give it a lighter feel for summer.  A very easy and fun pattern to knit.  Previous projects made with The Plucky Knitter yarns: Stripe Study and Kelmscott Socks and those made with Hedgehog Fibers: CarsonSand and Sea; and Starshower Cowl.

Was that an El Nino?

As the winter rainy season fizzles to an end I have to ask what happened to the "monster" El Nino with the extreme amounts of rain predicted?  Far be it for me to criticize the professionals, but I did invest in an umbrella.  But I'm not looking for a refund on my umbrella, just the rain they promised. It doesn't seem fair to raise our hopes that way and then not deliver.  In point of fact rainfall this season was well below even an average year. So much for the experts and our drought conditions continue.   But I am trying to focus on the positive and the mountains in Topanga did received some rainfall and as a result the wildflowers have been particularly abundant and beautiful.

Until next time be well and love well and have fun breaking out of your typical colors and explore ways that the brights and neons can spice up your summer knitting!  I have a fun month ahead with a trip up to Santa Barbara to visit my parents, a few days in the desert and then down to San Clemente for the Doheny Jazz Festival and I'll definitely be taking this shawl with me!