Still knitting, just…barely.

Today is one of two days of “Fall Break” that I’ll get this semester, and while I have PLENTY of work that I’m behind on and need to catch up on, I figured I’d take this opportunity to put together a blog post about the knitting I’ve managed to do so far. Which…isn’t a lot. This semester is breaking me. Which has meant both that I *need* to be knitting, because that’s a critical part of my self-regulation/self-care practice, but also that I haven’t had the time or attention necessary to do very much of it given the state that my current projects have been in.

Case in point, Vita de Vie, which as you can see from the photo at the top of this post is now at the point where I need to do a LOT of seaming. This requires a level of attention from me that the knitting doesn’t, really, and so it’s hard to sneak into my day. It’s not especially portable, either – not something I can shove in my backpack and work on during spare moments while my students do in-class activities. It’s also less of a calming activity for me; when I’m feeling really anxious, what my hands want is pretty much just straight stockinette.

Working on the second half of Vita de Vie
(Vita de Vie worked nicely as a “straight stockinette” project for awhile, and even the lace is quite straightforward once you get through the first row.)

My intention, at the beginning of the semester, was to use socks as the “pretty much just straight stockinette and also portable” project I carried with me, but my problem is that the sock that’s currently on the needles needs to match its partner, and I used a less-familiar-to-me heel turn for the partner, so I need to find time when I can actually focus on what I’m doing to complete the heel before I can get back to a more mindless knit. Hence using a little bit of time yesterday to wind up a skein of Gauge Dyeworks yarn for a Musselburgh Hat:

Beginning of a Musselburgh hat in Gauge Dyeworks "White Light"

I have my friend Cara to blame for this. She’s been knitting Musselburgh Hats in Gauge Dyeworks yarn for awhile now, and that’s what prompted me to check out the site and order the only colorway that was available at the time I checked: White Light, which I think is going to look great in a hat!

Beginning of a Musselburgh hat in Gauge Dyeworks "White Light"

I ordered a skein of the “Shawl” style, which is dyed so that the stretches of color get longer and longer, for even stripes in a triangle shawl. So far, it’s working nicely at the top of the Musselburgh Hat, too, and I’m curious to see what will happen once I stop increasing. I’m assuming the stripes will just get wider and wider, which will make for a very interesting hat, given that Musselburgh is reversible: I could either wear it with the skinny stripes out, or the wider stripes out. We’ll see. I was also able to snag a skein of the most recent run of the “Colorwheel” colorway that Cara used in her most recent hat, so once that arrives I’ll be able to knit a second colorful stripy hat and maybe that will help keep me sane through the rest of this miserable semester.

As for other future projects, I’ve also been thinking about what would be most useful for my wardrobe, especially now that I’m shifting towards wearing more handmade skirts and dresses. And one thing that’s kept popping into my head is that I could really use more light grey pieces, especially to pair with my black ikat dress and the black/white/grey speckled Cleo skirt, but with other things, too. I’ve been tempted to try to find a nice grey speckle yarn to make another (more cropped) Gridlines sweater, or to get another bundle of Beaverslide Sport/Sock in light grey to make a THIRD Vita de Vie, and who knows, maybe I will someday. But I also want to focus on knitting with what I already have – it’s one thing to buy a single skein for a hat here or there, but I’ve got several…SEVERAL…sweaters-worth of yarn in my craft closet and I should put it to use. So I did a bit of digging and guess what? I have close to 2 full skeins of Cascade Eco Wool in a light grey!

Future Farmhouse Cardigan?

Obviously Cascade Eco Wool is too bulky for either of the pullovers I mentioned earlier, but what I do know is that it will work perfectly for a Farmhouse Cardigan – I know it didn’t take 2 full skeins when I made mine in the Aporto colorway. And a light grey “workhorse” cardigan would be very useful to me! So, who knows when I’ll find time to cast on, but at least the pattern itself is familiar and not super complicated. On that note, I’m noticing that I’m feeling drawn towards reknitting familiar patterns recently. Partly, this is just how I roll with clothing: once I find something that works for me, I try to get it in as many good colors as I can! I’ve been doing the same thing with sewing, too: 5 Cleo Skirts and 3 Demeter Dresses so far. Partly, it’s probably because I’m not constantly seeing new, tempting projects on Ravelry anymore, having not used the site since March. Familiar, predictable projects are good, especially when everything else in life is feeling so very overwhelming.

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