Wednesday, May 13, 2009

chicago trip

I came up to Chicago with Chris on Monday so he could talk with a professor about grad school research opportunities at UIC. We stayed at my mom's in Skokie and took the train into Chicago Tuesday morning. After we went to UIC we got to check out Loopy Yarns in Chicago.

They had a really great selection of all kinds of yarn organized by weight. So, their worsted weight yarn was what you saw first, then they had their chunky yarn and sport/dk weight had its own room as well as lace/sock weight yarn. Their Lorna's Laces selection was excellent. I may have to get some of that at their shop this summer. However, their prices were all $2-3 more per ball of yarn than I've seen anywhere else. Perhaps that's because of their Chicago location, but they had some really nice yarns 25-50% off downstairs. They also had some roving downstairs. I want to explore spinning more, so I got my favorite colorway of merino top roving that they carry from Frabjous Fibers.

I even got a 10% discount for being a student and an awesome free tote bag for signing up on their email list. The bag has sheep knitting on the train.

Also on Tuesday, we went to Close Knit in Evanston, Illinois. It's a nice cozy one room shop with nice yarns stacked on all the walls. I found some awesome Fiddlesticks organic cotton yarn on sale for less than $5 a skein. I grabbed all five skeins because it was a soft neutral tweedy cotton.

I worked on a little shawl Monday and Tuesday with some Araucania Pomaire yarn. It's a wonderful cotton with amazing variegated colors. I loved working with it.

I cast on during the car ride from Urbana to Chicago, knit at home that night, on the train in the morning and throughout the day, and finished it at the beach in Evanston that afternoon.

I used a simple slipped stitch pattern with yarn overs on the edges and on either side of the center stitch. Then I just switched to garter stitch for eight rows with another colorway and cast off.

I think I'll definitely use this yarn again. It's a really nice soft cotton. There are several gorgeous colorways and they are all a little different. I like the purpley blue based one I got because it just had hints of the the yellow/orange bits.

I used one skein of the blue and less than a half skein of the green. So, I might have enough leftover for some fingerless mitts. I may try to add a crocheted border? Or some tassels maybe? I don't know. I may save that edging idea for another shawl sometime.

Let me know if you want me to write up a little recipe for this pattern. It's basically the same as the Boneyard Shawl that I wrote up, but you use less yarn and there's a different easy stitch pattern for the body of the shawl/neckwarmer.

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