New Pattern || Exoskeleton

This pattern has been a long time coming, so to say I'm excited to finally release it is an understatement.   I experimented with elongated stitch a few years ago, which involves a series of drop stitches creating the unique oval texture you see in the body of the shawl.  The entire time I was knitting it I kept thinking of watching roly polys (or doodle bugs, everyone has their own name for them) in my back yard as a kid.  The crossing and length of the stitches in this pattern reminded me of their little shells, their exoskeletons.  Thus, the origin of the name, Exoskeleton.  While I chose the name based on an association with the stitch pattern, I think a shawl in itself is a sort of second skin, another layer of protection and warmth.

Thank you to my lovely friend Jenna for modeling for me, despite the fact that it took me over a year to put the photos to use.  Cheers to shawl season!

Off the Needles || Color Craving

Top - Athleta, Skirt - thrifted, Tights - Target, Shoes - Minnetonka, Shawl - Color Craving by Stephen West knitted with Berroco Ultra Alpaca Fine
Since Momentum Tulsa ended, I've been trying to knock out all of my pending projects so I can start anew once we move.  There are a couple I've started on that haven't even been shared in an On My Needles post.  Soon!
Despite falling about a month behind, I continued with Color Craving using the mystery KAL instructions (although if you're interesting in knitting this pattern it is now released in its entirety on Ravelry.  Color Craving was designed by the talented Stephen West, and this is the second shawl of his that I've made (the first was Daybreak).
I'm not sure if I got too hasty in trying to finish this up or if I got distracted by the sob-fest that was my Parenthood Season 4 marathon on Netflix a few weeks back... but my stitch count was waaayyyyyy off on clues 2, 3 and 4.  Because of my determination to get this dang thing finished, I decided that fewer repeats would not change the appearance of the piece that much beyond the size so I just winged it and did as many as I could before running out of stitches on the short rows.  I think it turned out fine and I'm happy with the size, so no harm done.  Isn't it nice when accidental modifications work out?
Being the Ultra Alpaca fan that I am, I used some jewel tones in the Fine gauge, and man is this shawl ever cozy.  The breeze was a little crisp when I was taking the photos, but my arms were nice and warm underneath the shawl.  The large end is wide enough that it makes a really great hood/head wrap (as you can see below... too far?)

On My Needles || Color Craving

 Leave it to me to join a knit-along, despite knowing full well that I have absolutely no time for ANOTHER new project.  Stephen West recently hosted another knit-along on Ravelry (did any of you join?), and as I've never done a mystery KAL, I just couldn't pass it up.  The pattern is Color Craving, which is now unveiled and available in its full disclosed version.... and I just started Clue #2.  I've avoided looking at the final pattern photos so I can still have my fun going off of the clues, but seriously guys... this is sad. As you know, I've been a little busy with other things though, so I hope you'll let it slide.
Mr. West never ceases to intrigue with his patterns.  The first few rows were a little odd to knit because I just kept thinking, "okay, where is he going with this?"  As the first section unfolded though, it was really interesting to see how it shaped up.  Since I have about 5 other things going at the same time, including fungi (yay!) and some Halloween socks (had to), and another cardigan that I'm excited to show you soon, just know that it could take a little while before I show you finished photos of this guy... but I'll enjoy my surprises all the way.

Off the Needles || Ishbel Shawl

Admittedly, I finished this shawl WEEKS ago.  In fact, I've finished two more since then (hey there, Christmas knitting).  However, as I've moaned about before, I feel like an idiot running around with my camera and tripod in hand in public places taking self portraits.  Plus things have been really busy lately.  Seriously, it's a little pathetic.  Sooo... I got up early on Saturday morning and managed to find a nice secluded spot by an abandoned building on a street that no one seems to drive down that early in the day.  That sounds a little rapey, doesn't it?  Well, no one was there and the area surrounding the building was very open so I would have seen someone if they tried to sneak up on me.  In any case, I finally got some photos of my Ishbel, so now I can start wearing it!  Yes!  I should also note that it was about 45 degrees outside, but I felt that wearing it with a long sleeved shirt would look frumpy and would not complement the lace.  So there you go, I shot photos of myself in public wearing practically nothing on a super cold Saturday morning JUST FOR YOU!  I hope you enjoy them.  The Ishbel shawl is a design by Ysolda Teague.  Additional project details may be found on my Ishbel - On My Needles post.


On My Needles || Ishbel

This pattern moves unbelievably fast, and uses less than a skein of sock yarn.  I fell in love with this midnight blue shade of Sweet Fiber yarn's Super Sweet Sock in the Fountain colorway at Loops in Tulsa.  My intention was to pick up some Malabrigo sock yarn for the project, but this skein really stood out to me and I'm glad that I decided to use it.  (The leftovers will look great in my Bee Keeper's Quilt as well).

Ishbel is a shawl pattern by Ysolda Teague, with a nice scalloped or actually, rather pointy edging.  It went so fast I actually finished it several days ago, but I will have to order some blocking mats before I can show the finished product which might take a little while.  I'm excited to get it steamed out so I can see the lace pattern better... until then I guess I'll just have to further enjoy that dreamy color for a while.

I've also been working on some other sculptural projects, one of which you can catch a glimpse of below.  This is definitely a trial and error process, but I've learned to be patient with it because I want a high quality end result.  Hopefully you'll see more on this soon!