rhinebeck, the unexpected anticipation

estimated 6 min read

a warning note: I am breaking my Rhinebeck writeup into two parts but it’s still LONG.

I wasn’t sure I wanted to go to Rhinebeck this year. It wasn’t necessarily a matter a finances. It wasn’t social anxiety. It wasn’t potential weather.

Now that I have the ability to put my fibre in a somewhat organized manner I now know what I have.

I have a lot. Not yet SABLE amount, but quite enough to keep me busy for a while. I also own a wheel that I now know how to take care of. I own a spindle I adore.

Was it worth driving up and paying admission just to meet up with friends? Yes, but I knew I’d be tempted by the beautiful things around me.

E and I had a long discussion about it. We talked about some things I’d like. Some tools I was looking for. That I’d really thought hard about what I did and didn’t need. And that I wanted to meet up with some people. We decided we’d go.

I had one task I set myself before we could go and ended up with a few more due to the weather…

365.239 ... 20091016F

I set out to finish some fibre I’ve been spinning since I acquired my Bossie last year. Thanks to Dave‘s Summer of Spinning, I was spinning more and keeping better track of my progress. In addition to logging it in a spreadsheet, I added a composition book so I could be a little more verbose and expansive in my needs. I had no idea how much I had, but I knew I had to do something. And I did. It is nice fibre and I’m happy I did it. I knew I could then justify a tool or two. And that felt good.

184.5 yards of merino tussah silk
Fibre Merino/Tussah blend purchased from Clover Leaf Farm at MDSWF 2008,
singles spin on 13g tiger maple Bosworth Featherweight
plied on Hitchhiker wheel at 13:1 ratio on 20091016
counted approx 32wpi i can’t tell you yet that as I didn’t have the tool to tell me that until *after* rhinebeck (well, I had a tool, just not as pretty a tool as I have now)
19g of fibre

As last week progressed I began to pay attention to the weather. When nor’easter, snow, cold were combined to describe the region I began to worry. While we’ve been bringing back lots of stuff from the apartment (and subsequently trashing my office, since it’s very convenient to leave stuff there when coming in from the garage), and while our winter coats had made the journey, our deep winter hats and gloves had yet to come North.

By Thursday evening I knew the forecast was pretty settled. Cold & Potential Snow. E and I talked about it. There were two options (three really but the third was quickly disregarded as silly), one was that we drive to the apartment Saturday night and pick up our winter hats and gloves. The second was that I go stash diving and make at least two hats and maybe a set of over-mittens since we both have our fingerless mitts (his and mine).

E's Rhinebeck 2009 hatmy Rhinebeck 2009 hat

Yup. I went stash diving.

Both hats are based on Stephanie Pearl-McPhee’s UnOriginal Hat. Both hats use 6mm and 6.5mm circs. These are a large size for me, so I only have one of each. EZ proved years ago that the knitter would probably unconsciously auto correct for tension differences. I can’t tell you which side was knitted with which needle. Both hats took between 3.5 and 4 hours. If I had sat and concentrated they’d have probably taken less time. Both hats use the ever so awesome yardage from Lion Brand Fishermen’s Wool in Nature’s Brown. Both hats are wonderful. They cover our ears. They are not scratchy.

I prefer knitting with DK or finer, but I knew I needed a hat fast. And not just one hat. Two. I needed bulky. Super bulky if possible. Thus I didn’t just use the Fishermen’s Wool.

My hat, which is just not loosely based on, but mostly closely followed (for once) of Stephanie’s pattern, is knitted with one strand of the aforementioned Fishermen’s Wool and one strand of Lion Brand Alpine Wool a new bulky single-ply yarn that is super soft and the Bay Leaf is just such a yummy colour. I think it matches my office wall. ;) I used just less than one skein of the Alpine wool and approximately 75 yards of Fishermen’s wool. My Ravelry Project Page for this project can be found here.

E’s hat is, by contrast, loosely based on her pattern. I was not in the mood to think about stitch counts and tension and E’s head. I was going to slightly gamble. I knew I’d win, but I hadn’t anticipated how wildly successful I’d be. His hat uses two strands of Fishermen’s Wool and one strand of Valley Yarns Sugarloaf. I knitted a 1×1 rib and used my hat (which was finished first) for sizing info. Due to row height differences I knitted at least five fewer rounds on E’s hat. (woo hoo!) The decreases for his hat kept the ribbing for the first round and then then were all turned into k2togs or ssk’s, whichever felt right for me as I got to the need to decrease. My ravelry Project Page for this project can be found here.

Verdict? He likes it better than all three hats I knitted him last winter season. It matches all his winter outerwear. Go figure right?

Oh, the over mittens? After a discussion we narrowed it down to one pair, mine. Since my hands are always freezing. After finishing the hats I grabbed some Kraemer Yarns Muach Chunky without a ballband but in a dark grey that was found during the move, 5mm needles (since I want this warm and thick) and started in. I knitted sock toes and then went until I felt where the thumb should be and I put 3 stitches aside for an afterthought thumb. I then went back to work. As we were driving up on Sunday I continued frantically working on them and I got quite a bit finished. When we arrived in Rhinebeck, I put my mittens with completed thumbs that were just ready for cuffs onto waste yarn and put them on. Yes. I was that one with lots of yarn ends trailing out of her coat. I still don’t care. My fingers were warm. Since Rhinebeck I’ve knitted about two inches of cuff. I’m going to knit until I run out of this ball of yarn and then bind off with some other Muach Chunky I have floating around. My project page for these mittens can be found here.

my rhinebeck 2009 mittens, almost

Reader interactions

2 Replies to “rhinebeck, the unexpected anticipation”

  1. Now that’s what knitting is all about!!

  2. And they look just as good in person! Amazingly fast knitting, Penny!

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