I am ready to give this On-line KAL / Video tutorial stuff a try. Bear with me and please lend constructive critiques. This is new territory for me and you are all going to be my Guinea Pigs.
For my first project with this new yarn I wanted to do a two color fairsile/stranded project. I have been admiring the Inspira Cowl by celerystalk on Ravelry . I've been itching to make this. I immediately cast on and then read the pattern (I do know I'm supposed to read patterns before I start but I like to live dangerously). It is a 2 x 2 rib with color change every 2 x 2. Well, I like to carry both yarns in my left hand but when you try to do 2 colors and involve purl stitches also, it can get a little all thumbsy. Then I remembered I had figured out how to purl without bringing the yarn to the front. Aha! What a great idea for a video tutorial, aha! what a great project for an online KAL!
I contacted the designer, celerystalk, and asked her permission to use her pattern. She said yes! So here goes!
- Inspira Pattern
- Drops Big Delight ,1 MC & 1 CC - 2 skeins total *or Aran weight yarn 424 yds* total in two different colors.
*(I've modified my version to make it a little bigger so I don't know for sure how much yarn I'll use but I am assuming two skeins will be enough)
- 24" - 40" circular needle to get a gauge of approx 19 st x 22 rws over 4" and a circular of the same length but one size smaller for firming up the neck area. I knit very loosely so I am using a US 8 needle. The pattern originally called for a US 10. Because this is a cowl / shoulder warmer you can be just a little off with your gauge and it shouldn't cause problems.
- Stitch marker to mark the beginning of your rounds.
Definitely do what celerystalk recommends and read the knitty gritty parts at the end of the pattern! After you are through reading take some time to admire her "field notes". She has included three hand drawn images of her inspiration. I wish my mind worked like that. I'm tempted to frame her illustrations.
First thing I want to note to you is that I added on an additional 20 stitches because I want this to fit over a light jacket. So let's start with the cast on. I'm doing a long tail cast on.
*I measure the amount of "tail" that I will need by casting on ten stitches, then unravel and measure how many inches it took to knit the ten stitches. Call that A. Divide the number you are supposed to cast on by ten, call that B. multiply A by B and give you a close estimate of the number of inches to allow for the tail portion of the long tail cast on. I usually add a few more inches. I'd rather trim a long end than have to start all over.
If you hold both yarns in your left hand like I do; here is a video on a trick I taught myself a long time ago and almost forgot about it until I started this project.
It's fun to see the start of the staggers along with the slow color shifts.
Here is where we do a decrease round to create a shoulder shape. I also changed needle size to a smaller needle to have a slightly firmer fabric.
Important Note - I had to use a second skein of my main color, the brown, because I increased the number of stitches cast on.