A new knitting project is going on this week, full of yummy colour - remember this lovely ball of Schoppel-Wolle Zauberball? Tropical fish is the colourway and I just love it. It's just been sitting in my basket and has actually been started a few times but I just didn't like or want this yarn knitted up in anything that didn't show it off to its full yumminess. So, back it went waiting to be knitted, and it has waited, and waited.....:-))
Till last week when I was looking for a bright yarn to knit some armwarmers or possibly long gloves with a bit of pattern altering. Pattern needed fingering weight and I wanted coloured stripes so the tropical fish just jumped out at me and before long was on the needles.
The pattern is 'Armwarmers' by Brigids Hearth and is an easy knit pattern for elbow length armwarmers. I decided to split my one ball for contrasting stripes and I am fully expecting that the colours will merge just when I don't want them to, just like my noro socks - which still aren't finished:-) For a bit of variation this time, I chose to have unequal widths of stripes - 4 rows of the red and 6 of the blue/green. I thought it would work quite well for a longer length of st.st knitting.
I chose to start striping right from the beginning including the rib cuff. This was maybe a mistake - from a distance it keeps the stripes looking even right to the edge but when you look at the knit close-up, the rib distorts the orange colour band and doesn't look as nice - to me. I decided to leave it but next time, I'll start striping after the rib detail.
Overall though, I love how these gloves are turning out - yes, I think these will be gloves as I can't resist putting stripey fingers on them;-)) I have stopped in this picture where the pattern ends for armwarmers, so you can imagine just how they could look. Nice! I did have a little issue with the colours merging around the yellow area but I was strong and 'broke' the thread, took out a bit of yarn till the colours contrasted enough again and restarted knitting.
(You know how I hate breaking yarn! But if its going to spoil the gloves.... then I have to be strong -but its just so permanent! - and I like yarn to find its own way usually, that's part of the challenge. But I have knitted my noro socks too many times trying to solve this naturally, that I'm resolved just to be practical and concede it will never work without intervention!!)
One thing that is a major issue is that these are a VERY snug fit. Usually fingering weight gloves have a circumferemce of around 60sts at the wrist. These start at 70sts at the elbow and decrease to 48sts at the wrist. That is quite neat! Feels more like those arm support bandages;-)) I think the best solution for this would be either to knit the exact same pattern with a thicker yarn like sportweight or DK/light worsted weight or stick with fingering weight and alter the numbers for a better fit. I think I will end up trying both as I like long gloves and if I have time may knit more as presents for christmas so I'll let you know how I get on.
Question is, do I keep this rather neat fitting one or rip it back and start again? Zauberball isn't known for its durability and does get a bit fuzzy so will it damage the yarn by taking it back? It was a bit splitty to knit with too. Maybe I'll wear it for a little bit and if the circulation gets cut off on that arm then I'll have to admit defeat;-))