Festival yarn

This year, my family and I went to the New Hampshire Sheep & Wool Festival in May, where I bought 5 skeins of Green Mountain Spinnery’s Sylvan Spirit in agate.

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The beautiful thing about buying this yarn at the booth, versus online, is that I saw it knit up in a variety of projects, and knew that although it seems wooly in the skein, it blocks to a very soft, drapey, cushy fabric. The yarn is a blend of 50% Targee wool, and 50% Tencel Lyocell.

The fibers differ in the way they take up the dye, and the resulting color is rich and heathered. Indoors, or in dim light, the color is closer to aubergine, as you see above, but outside, the color is more violet. I knew that the yarn would be best in a simple stitch pattern, and I chose Ischl by Monie Ebner.

PatternIschl by Monie Ebner, worked without mods. I have only one comment about the pattern. In the “Notes” section on page 2, there is a recommendation to work the right i-cord loose, and the left i-cord tight, and I think those recommendations should be reversed, meaning, left (outer edge) i-cord loose, and right (neck edge) i-cord tight.

Yarn: Green Mountain Spinnery Sylvan Spirit in agate, about 260 grams and 807 yards (4.5 skeins).

Needles and finished dimensions: after blocking, the shawl is a whopping 105″ across the top, and 22″ deep at its deepest. The overall shape is that of a boomerang. It is perfect for wrapping up around yourself on a chilly autumn day.

Stories from Snoqualmie Valley – a Blanket Life shawl

Oh, this shawl, it is just so squishy, warm, hefty, and lovely! A perfect example of “Blanket Life” – when the thing you wear is just like wrapping a huge blanket around yourself. It can be a slouchy cardigan, or a shawl, but it needs to be substantial and cozy!

PatternStories from Snoqualmie Valley by Annie Rowden. I think this was originally distributed as a Mystery Knitalong (MKAL), but that was a few years ago. The pattern is very well written, and flows easily once you get the hang of it. The garter stitch center is knit the same way you work short rows on a traditional heel flap, so that was interesting. Blocking was a bit of a challenge: it seemed like the inside of the fabric wanted to block bigger than the borders would allow.

Yarn: Blue Moon Fiber Arts, La Luna DK, Winter Solstice colorway. Wonderful yarn, very soft and squishy, with a textured beady ply. 85% merino, 15% silk. Shawl used up about 370 grams/820 yards.

Needles and finished dimensions: I used US7 needles for this, first a short circ while knitting the patterned border, and then a long interchangeable one while knitting the body. The shawl blocked to about 75″ across the top, and 24″ deep.

Braidsmaid shawl

Do you follow me on Instagram? As I’ve been knitting the Braidsmaid shawl, I’ve been posting progress shots and videos there, even those “my story” ones! It’s been a lot of fun!

By the way, if you want an Instagram stream to pop up in your blog reader (maybe you aren’t attached to your smart phone in the same way I am!), there are ways to generate an RSS feed from a user’s Instagram!

Anyway, the Braidsmaid shawl is done, and it was a fantastic project! Just the right mix of interesting design and mindless knitting.

Pattern: Braidsmaid shawl by Martina Behm of Strickmich! As I mentioned above, wonderful pattern. The shape of the finished shawl is asymmetric and difficult to describe. It’s a triangle, but not quite. And see how the cable runs down the middle at first, but then moves to the edge – cool, right? (It was challenging to block, I’ll tell you that!)


I did modify the beginning and ending corners, making them pointed rather than blunt, as originally written.

Yarn: Spirit Trail Fiberworks “Birte,” which is a DK-weight 75% superwash merino/15% cashmere/10% bombyx silk, in the colorway “Moonless Night.” I had 2 skeins, and tried to use up as much yardage as possible. I came close! About 14 grams remain, and so the shawl used up about 212 grams/516 yards. The color is mysterious and impossible to capture. From afar, it looks black, or almost black. Up close, it is blue and green and indigo and forest murk.

Needles: Though the pattern specified to use US6 needles, I thought the fabric came out too dense when using them, and sized up to US7s. The cables in this pattern crossed 8 stitches over another 8, which I couldn’t do that without the use of a cable needle, so I ended up using a short circ to help me with that.