Sunday, May 3, 2015

Celtic Princess Braided Scarf from Yarn & Thread Expressions - Day 1

Cable Challenges...

When working with a sophisticated cable like this, yarn choice makes a big difference.  If you don’t go with a bold, bright solid or a light neutral, everything can get lost.  A dark color or variegated yarn simply wouldn’t work—the braiding wouldn't show up the way you would want after all that cable effort.

The fiber itself intrigues me.  Aside from having a dreamy name that belongs in one of my romance novels, Elsabeth Lavold has created Silky Wool with a feather-light, raw silk quality that both surprises and delights.  You’d expect a sturdy, work-a-day wool with cables—the fisherman’s aran sweater and all—but this fiber gives the scarf an airy feel.  The contrast adds a terrific character.  Texture galore, perfect stitch definiton, but no bulk.  Had I gone with a cream or white rather than my cheery “Maraschino” red, I think I’d feel like someone had stretched a cloud out on a taffy pull.

It’s good that I like the fiber and the color, because I can tell right away the cables are going to challenge me.  I don’t mind cables, but I prefer the kind where only a few rows require the wrangling of that third needle.  With this pattern, not only are their four types of cross-overs, but they occur every right-side row and some rows incorporate two different kinds!  I’m forever checking—often double-checking—the cable stitch key down at the bottom of the page.  Like the trellis stitch in earlier projects, I’ve got to find a way to memorize the stitches so I can make faster progress. I feel like I’m burning way too many brain cells to get this done right now.

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