Monday, February 15, 2010

When you get lemons…

Make Lemonade! (or as I prefer, when you get lemons, make Margaritas!)

Well I don’t have lemons (a lie, I always have some fresh lemons around!)
But I do have onions.

Remember back in December, I bought a 10lb bag of onions?

Well I finally got around to making my onion soup (and a fine one it is too—I had half a bottle of pinot noir—and the soup broth was made with it, as well as beef broth (and water)! Yum!

I used about 5 lbs of the onions. I like onions, and I don’t much like a hunk of bread and ton of cheese on my onion soup—a few croutons and light grating of cheese is fine—what I want in an onion soup is onions! I ended up with 6 pints of soup from my 5lbs. of onions.

So—what with peeling (and slicing) onions, I had a big pile of onions skins.

I tell you all this because my friend Robyn, (aka WeeBallYarns) has been doing this wonderful art project at Wave Hill—and one aspect of the project is hand made (knit or crocheted) hats from home spun, naturally dyed yarn.

Well-- I have some home spun—it's not very well made stuff (my stardards for myself are very high!) –but it is NYC grown wool that I cleaned and carded and spun—and then yesterday dyed it. –OH yeah the onion skins!

The color is wonderful—Not yellow, not orange, not brown—but a pale but earthy almost red ocher. I don’t have a lot of the yarn, so I will cast on with some ready made wool for the ribbing, and then make the crown with the home spun, vegetable dyed wool

It’s pretty true to the actually color on my monitor—but what you see might be close or not!

While technically this yarn is not part of her project—I hope she’ll accept it (I am sure she will!)—It’s made in the spirit of her project—(and I have participated in the most peripheral way) in the project—and this is my small contribution.

I’ll sneak this knitting in one day soon—but I am confident I can—my Ravelympics project is progressing nicely.

I cast on about 9PM Friday—(7 stitches) and now have over 100—(7 blocks of 10, plus a knit in place border) The current blocks are about half done –so things are progressing at a good pace—and the stitch count is halfway to 90 (+30)

My plan was to have 11 blocks--but I might bring that number up to 15—(150 +30) before considering the base of the V finished. There are compelling reasons to do so.

There were several factors in my original plan –1 being yarn! But I am still on my first skein—so I think I will have more than enough to go the extra length (and width)

My thinking was –a bit sketchy, to be sure— 3 skeins for base of V, and 2 skeins each for arms. (which is plenty!) I think 1 will reach a full 9 blocks on skein one.. and while the rows are getting longer and longer, I still think I will be able to continue up to 15 blocks with out putting a dent into skein 3.

Secondly—I like the idea of a larger neck back—(30 stitches wide and not 10 stitches wide. So with either 11 blocks or 15 blocks, the arms of the v will be 7 blocks wide. (unblocked, this is about 20 inches)

Larger is better—more coverage of the shoulder and arms is what I want from a shawl-- 15 blocks will be close to 50 inches at the shoulder—plenty!

But one big advantage of the planned V shape, is: just as the number of stitches in a row becomes onerous—I’ll be dividing the work! And working on 2 shorter length arms—and when these become boring—and start feeling tedious—they will be shaped into points by decreasing—and I’ll be done.

It will, of course get larger still when blocked—but I am not doing to do a hard block and only stretch it about 10 to 20%--(not 40 or more!) and for you none lace knitters, --Yes—it is not uncommon for a blocked lace project to almost double in size.

Maybe tomorrow—I’ll post some peeks. Or maybe I’ll have finished (and I still haven’t!) the Fruity Cowl (neck ring) and I’ll have photo’s of it!
I am working on the last quarter—and at this point itching to have it finished.


Virginia G said...

How very cool! Tell me, did the onions leave an oniony smell on the yarn?

zippiknits.....sometimes said...

Lovely color of yarn that you get from onion skins.

I had saved an entire bag of them so my dd confiscated them and dyed some felted clogs out of her homespun. She then gave them to her daddy. He has the biggest feet in the family, of course, so the ALMOST fit him. My job is to try to felt them down a little more.

I'll put them on his feet and show you a picture tomorrow or the next day. The yarn came out a very pale yellow, too, almost an ocher, like yours, but the heels were died with walnut skins, and are brown.

Love your blog, just love the things you do.