theraineysisters knitting and so much more

May 15, 2013

From Susan – Off the Grid

Filed under: Updates — lv2knit @ 7:26 am

I will be out of town for a few days — going to Florida with some of my peeps.  I will just be hanging out around a pool and maybe going on an airboat through the Everglades looking for gators!!!

I doubt I will be doing much knitting.  My hands and wrists have flared up a little bit and this may be the perfect excuse for a mini-break.  On the other hand, I can’t imagine not knitting on the plane OR when lounging poolside!

I do have a smallish project in mind.  One of my [cough::many::cough] purchases when Sally was here was the yarn for the Aranami Shawl by Olga Buraya-Kefelian.  If you buy just a little more, you can make two.  So that is what we did.  Olga shows hers knit in Brooklyn Tweed’s LOFT and The Yarnery in St. Paul is a new distributor of his yarns.  While in DC, this is the project I worked on and then finished shortly after getting home:

Aranami in LOFT

It’s cute, right?  But the yarn is a pain.  It is so fragile that it breaks doing the most mundane tasks: rolling it in a ball, pulling the yarn from said ball, picking up sts (which you do constantly in this project), sewing in ends (which you do constantly in this project)…well, you get the idea.  It did not happen every time, but I would not use this yarn again.  Which brings me to the next item.

On Mother’s Day, DD the eldest (my very knitworthy little pumpkin) saw the shawl and loved it and its Japanese vibe.  BUT, she did not like the look or feel of the yarn.  I went back the The Yarnery and bought Cascade 220 Fingering yarn in a similar array of colors.  The price differential is astounding: $5 vs $14.50!!  You need 5 colors and even though you only use small amounts of the first few tiers, you still have to buy a skein!!   $25 compared to $72.50.  The colors aren’t identical but I am fine with that 🙂 .

I have started it, but as I said, I am feeling discomfort when I knit (or do just about anything, to be honest!).  I leave tomorrow morning before dawn and will not know until then if the project comes with me or stays home… 🙁

PS – Deb asked which Cascade 220 Fingering yarns I am using:

8401 – natural
8010 – silver
8400 – charcoal
4002 – jet
8555 – black

The lightest color is whiter and the darkest is blacker than the version in LOFT.

PS2: Just adding this about LOFT — the above commentary is MY OPINION, and it is just an opinion.  Many knitters absolutely love LOFT and think it is amazing.  They put up with the fragility because of the colors, etc.  The Black Coal was the worst culprit for me so maybe I got a bad skein (?).  Anyway, even though I judged it harshly, you may want to see for yourself!!


  1. That is so pretty! I’m very inspired to explore the possibility of making one of those.

    Also, the flare-up sounds rotten. Bummer that.

    Comment by Valerie — May 15, 2013 @ 10:25 am

  2. Cool looking shawl! Sorry about your wrist flare-up.
    I know how that goes after doing some gardening lately.

    Comment by technikat — May 15, 2013 @ 11:14 am

  3. The shawl is beautiful, a very unique design. Have a lovely time in Florida…I live here year round and right now the weather is perfect…balmy, not too humid, sunny, and the gardenias and jasmine are in bloom so the air smells beautiful!

    Comment by Mary Lou — May 15, 2013 @ 11:17 am

  4. I simply love Olga’s Aranami design. The “grey-scale shawl” (as I call it) has been in my Rav queue since I first saw it. Thanks for your yarn review; I’ll keep it in mind.

    Comment by stashdragon — May 15, 2013 @ 12:01 pm

  5. It looks great!

    Comment by surly — May 15, 2013 @ 12:12 pm

  6. Sounds like a great time to catch up on your reading and give your hands a rest — it’s a short break for hopefully a full return to your usual enjoyment of the craft.

    Comment by Wool Free and Lovin' Knit — May 15, 2013 @ 2:30 pm

  7. Enabler! Drat. Now I have to go hunting for the right yarn. Thanks for the tip about Loft. It is so pretty.

    Comment by Orghlaith — May 15, 2013 @ 4:41 pm

  8. I, unfortunately, know all about RSI from knitting, computer work etc-horrible!
    I’ve had this shawl in my list – now purchased :). Could you tell me the colours you are using in the cascade? I can’t see them for real here in rural Oz as I have to rely on my screen – so knowing your colours would help a lot!

    Comment by Deb — May 15, 2013 @ 7:05 pm

  9. Get those arms healthy for marathon knitting at camp! Love your shawl, and will definitely be shopping for yarn for it at camp.
    Have a great time in Florida.

    Comment by Penny — May 15, 2013 @ 7:10 pm

  10. Take care of your hands. If you have an iPad you could play Scrabble on the plane, or do crosswords, as well as reading. (Sorry I missed you at Sheep and Wool!)

    Comment by Chloe — May 15, 2013 @ 8:37 pm

  11. The shawl is gorgeous! Have a great time in FL but do come back – we’ll miss you at Penelope!

    Comment by Kathy W. — May 15, 2013 @ 9:49 pm

  12. A project I did not too long ago required Loft and I substituted J&S. I was sorry I didn’t have the Loft to work with, but now I wonder if maybe that was a good thing. Interesting to hear your thoughts on the yarn. Your shawl is lovely!!!

    Comment by Ruth — May 17, 2013 @ 3:21 pm

  13. Sorry to hear about your pain. Enjoy Florida and treat yourself to a warm paraffin manicure while you’re there. It’s done wonders for me in the past when my wrists and fingers start to ache. 🙂

    Comment by nancynurse — May 20, 2013 @ 1:28 pm

  14. Thanks for sharing the info about Brooklyn Tweed Loft. Given it’s price, it seemed it would be a good quality yarn and Brooklyn Tweed’s yarns have been praised by some knitting bloggers. Even without feeling or seeing the yarn, I was considering ordering some, trusting in what I’d read about it to date. Now I’m going to pass on the yarn based on your experience.

    Comment by PurrlGurrl — May 21, 2013 @ 3:44 am

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