Two Fun Challenges

Hubby went out of town for just over a week, and this time I was ready to take advantage of the time alone to get some big projects out of the way. There was a lot of work, but I made sure I had some play in the mix as well, and what fun I had! I did two knitting projects just for the sheer joy of doing them – and because I’ve wanted for several years to try out knitting with Schoolhouse Press Unspun Yarn. Of course, I really didn’t need anything else on my needles, and though I’d ordered my wheels when the new KAL for a Lace Neck Scarf or Shawl by Marilyn VanKeppel was announced, I had convinced myself I wasn’t going to actually cast on – at least not until I cleared out a few other projects.

Unspun 007

Beige, Spruce, Caramel, Dark Caramel, and Sage

Then DH took off to the airport, and next thing I knew, I had Unspun wrapped around my needles, eager to become a new shawl. 🙂

Peppermint Patty 006

Somehow that first evening, I got this brilliant idea that I was going to finish my project before he returned in a week, despite teaching 4 knitting classes, working on the remodeling, planning to finish my clock, doing some major cleaning projects, picking up all his normal chores… oh… and being surprised by one of my classes and having to cast on a sweater. The really fun thing is that I actually succeeded! I finished sewing in my end at six minutes past midnight, so the dates look like 8 days, but it was about an hour less than 7 days, not counting the blocking, which I faithfully did the next afternoon.

Unspun Wonder 001

The instructions say to block the top edge straight, but the pattern uses decreases in the fashion of the Danish heart-shaped shawls. I’ve wanted to knit one of those for ages, so I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to block this one taking advantage of the built in shaping. The top edge measures 72″ and the center back is 34″.

Unspun Wonder 004

I love the finished shawl. It’s feather light, but warm, the colors are lovely – sage, spruce, beige, caramel, and dark caramel, and the Unspun gives it a totally different look from anything else I’ve knit to this point. And it was lots of fun to knit!

Unspun Wonder 021

Unspun Wonder 023

Unspun Wonder 024

A few days into that project, I headed to Dayton to teach my Concerto and Symphony classes at Fiberworks. I was surprised and pleased to learn that Arlene now sells Unspun at the shop! She definitely needed a sample project and hinted about my shawl, but there was no way! Instead, I bought 4 more wheels, thinking I’d make the smaller Neck Scarf version of the KAL pattern. (Remember… I really needed a new project, right? 😉 )

Denim, Winter Blue, Donahue, and Raspberry

Denim, Winter Blue, Donahue, and Raspberry

Having succeeded in my “While Hubby’s Away One Week Unspun Wonder” (as I named it on Ravelry), I got this crazy idea. Could I do the scarf in one day? Wouldn’t know if I didn’t try! It took some scrambling to get it blocked before my 24 hours were up, but guess what… I did it! I finished the knitting in six hours (counting fixing a few mistakes that happened because I was thinking “fast” and totally negated the speed bit…), then had it washed and blocked an hour after that.

Little Wonder 001

I used larger needles for the scarf – size 10 (6mm) for the shawl and 10.75 (7mm) for the scarf.

Little Wonder 002

The following day was a gorgeous autumn in Ohio sort of day, so the photo shoot was fun!

Little Wonder 011

My “Little Wonder” measures 36″ across the top and has an 18″ drop.

Little Wonder 012

If I were to do this one over again, I think  would move the raspberry stripe down against the winter blue instead of having a denim buffer between the two. Still, I really love the way these two projects turned out, and there will definitely be more Unspun in my future. In fact, I’m going to be teaching Unspun projects at Fiberworks in the near future! 🙂


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