The years may come and go, but February means just one thing to me: Stitches West. Anticipation tends to make me scatterbrained and overly excited, but this time, for a change, it actually led to a light-bulb moment. My mind was bouncing between two virtual lists: on the one hand, the yarns I had decided that I "needed" to find at the market, and on the other, the yarns bought at last year's Stitches that had still not found their purpose in life. On my right, a million virtual knits waiting to happen. On my left, the slight weight of guilt at having done nothing with some treasures from times past.
When it comes to Stitches, I made myself just one convenient rule, a long time ago: if I haven't used yarn from one particular vendor, I am not allowed to purchase something from that same vendor just yet. Sometimes this rule has been helpful; it has led to many projects getting cast on in December, so that the slate would be clean come February. Sometimes, however, the rule simply leads me to shift my allegiance to a new-to-me vendor, which is not a bad thing, of course... but does nothing for next year's burden of guilt.
Last year, I fell in love with Kauni wool. I know, everybody fell in love with Kauni wool in previous years, but I was late to this party. Not being a huge fan of rainbow-color knits, I hadn't felt the pull of this shetland-type wool and of its loooong color repeats until I discovered the many, many colorways in which it was available, over at the Mannings booth. I bought one skein of black-grey-purple Kauni wool, together with one skein of red-ruby-hot pink Kauni wool. I was thinking "vest" or maybe short pullover. By the next morning, remorse had set in, leading me (I know, I know) to splurge on one more skein of each since I would probably not wear a vest and would want my pullover to be big rather than small.
Then I waited. I knitted other things. I studied every Kauni project ever knitted on Ravelry. I checked Google Images just so as to leave no stone unturned, since there are apparently more than a few knitters in the world who still haven't joined Ravelry. I considered, and ruled out, many projects. I worried too about the "wooliness" of Kauni close to the skin, and gave up on the pullover idea.
But with all that research, it took the urgency of knowing that I would attended Stitches West, 2014, to come up with the right plan for the Kauni brought home in 2013.
Behold, the two-Kauni log-cabin blanket. It started with the traditional red, and grew from there, not too traditionally, I hope. I am planning for the initial block to end up slightly off center. Every log is made of either 3, or 6, or 9 garter-stitch ridges. I am letting the colors just happen, with the exception of black, which I have edited out of my skeins for now. My plan is to use it as a final "frame" once the blanket will have reached its full length.
Even on a size 3 needle, this project has been growing fast. I am now on to the 3rd and 4th skein of my Kauni stashette, and still entertained by the subtle transitions in colors. I don't know how big the final blanket will be and not worried one bit. I am letting the yarn decide, just playing along and marveling at how much pleasure the simple log-cabin blanket still brings to me, and to countless other knitters.