it's brioche, baby

I've got a new obsession. Brioche! It's a technique I've wanted to try for ages ... then earlier this summer, I indulged in some stash enhancement (Malabrigo Merino in assorted colorways ... mmmm) with the intent of making some two-color brioche cowls. And finally I am following through on my plans ... and I'm loving every minute of it! 

It's so comforting and mindless and satisfying--everything I'm looking for in a project while I'm in the midst of back-to-school, hurry-hurry-scramble mode. And I fall hard for any kind of technique that looks way fancier/harder/complicated than it really is. Case in point: you only use one color at a time with this technique. Each row is either a combination of K2tog and slipping stitches (with a yarnover that "floats" on top of your slipped stitch) or a P2tog with the slipped stitch/yarnover combination. The pattern I'm using is Purl Bee's free brioche cowl tutorial, but combined with the needle size/cast on used from Kennebec. So I cast on 90 stitches, and am using size 9 needles. Other than that modification, I'm following the Purl Bee pattern. Oh, and of course using Malabrigo isn't so awful, either! This is Apple Green combined with Jacinto.

I have a feeling these are going to be like potato chips ... I won't be able to stop at just one ...

 (a peek at the reverse side!)

one crazy cat quilt

The cat quilt is done! Just in time, too! This is by far the most patchwork I've ever done! Triangles? Oh my! It was fun and less fiddly than I feared, however.  The pattern is the free "kool kat kwilt" by Patti Carey, but upsized for a full size bed. To upsize it, I added another row of cats to the borders and added strips of extra cat material until I ran out. I ended up with a quilt top the size of a queen size flat sheet (which I used for my backing), so this is a generously-sized full bed quilt!

malabrigo mecha love

It's done! It's done! And I loooooove it! Happy dances all around! As much as I like to avoid seaming, there is something so satisfying and motivating about how fast the much smaller "left front" and "right front" knit up after knitting the back. 

I love how knitting with bulky yarn gives a 3-D quality to the lace--it almost looks like cables! But all it is is the bulk of a three-stitch SSSK or K3tog! Neat, huh? And I am in absolute love with this yarn and colorway--"Whale's Road" is the perfect name for it. It's so hard to photograph, but there is purple, turquoise, and different shades of navy blue in the mix. For some reason I am totally drawn to dark royal blues and navy right now, and this yarn perfectly encapsulates those shades. This is a superwash Malabrigo, which I am super excited about. I won't have to worry about felting it on accident!

Pattern: Montague Bulky Lace Vest (from the book New England Knits) Link to my Rav project.
Yarn: Malabrigo Mecha (3.75 skeins, "Whale's Road" colorway)
Needles: Size 13 Addi Turbos
Modifications: Like others who have knit this pattern, I added an edging around the armholes to make them look more finished. And to minimize the size--I found the armholes to be a little gaping and large without the edging. I simply picked up and knit stitches evenly around the armhole, and then knit three rows stockinette before casting off. It's the same edging used in my Mom's Vest--simple, but looks nice and clean.

This is definitely going to be in heavy rotation once our temps finally feel quasi-winter like here in Mississippi! (oh, say, December!)

cat invasion

Lately my house feels like a cat factory! The cat quilt is progressing nicely ... now I need to finalize my layout so I can finish the cat tail blocks.

2021 year in review

  Who would have thought that the second year of a pandemic would be worst than the first, in terms of crafting mojo? Not I. But this chart ...