After months of feeling like my knitting isn’t really going anywhere, I was a little stunned when this sprung off my needles this weekend:

I started at the collar with a vague idea of where I was going, and added lace and purl row details as the mood struck me. I knew within minutes of starting the swatch that this was going to be an addictive project. I think my hands have been missing the texture of handspun yarn, really. I love the Briar rose yarn and it is going to make a beautiful sweater, but commercial yarn doesn’t have quite the same feel to it, and I think I was missing my handspun without realizing it.

It also helps that this is the yoke part of the pattern, and the yoke always goes quickly. Add to that the fact that I’m knitting on size three needles (which feel huge now t0 me) and throw a few pattern rows in there to help stretch the yarn and keep things interesting, and you have a recipe for fast knitting.

The pattern is a simple yarnover mesh, and I really love how it worked out. I wasn’t sure if I’d be able to guesstimate the gauge difference for stockinette and the lace based on my swatch alone, so I blocked it on the needles on Sunday night, and am thrilled to report that it seems to be laying flat. I haven’t had much time to knit since the weekend, but I’m looking forward to getting back to it. It’s now past the sleeve split and into the body, so it’s back to a smaller number of stitches again and is moving quickly.

Almost too quickly, in fact. I realized on Sunday that I only have 8 oz of yarn when I thought I had 12, which means that I’m rather short on yardage. Fortunately, I have a couple of braids in the spinning stash that complement the main color quite nicely.

The colors are close but not quite the same, which I think will give it a nice gradient effect and help to prepare for the corespun. (Oh, yeah…I also need to spin the rest of the corespun, too…did I mention that I didn’t really plan this project out carefully?) I am currently thinking that I’ll spin one single from each braid, and then ply them together. The extra 8 oz will stretch the yarn that I have, and should give me enough to make the sleeves a little fuller, and probably also full length. The whole yoke was knit from 3.5 oz, so having 16 total should give me plenty to play with.

I have to admit to being a little torn between forging boldly ahead with the knitting (and risking running out of yarn) and holding back a bit to let myself catch up with the spinning first. If only all problems were so difficult to solve!

Fortunately, spring break is next week, so there’s a good chance that I’ll find some good, solid knitting and spinning time soon. I have about 6-8 oz left to spin on Branden’s sweater yarn to free up the bobbins, and then this project is next in line. It’s wonderful when projects practically knit themselves!