One of my 'local yarn stores' is in Cardigan market, and the lovely owner receives any needles and yarn given into the Ty Hafan charity shop, to sell on their behalf. I've picked up knitting needles there before, so I went armed with my list and a needle gauge to try to fill in some holes in my collection. Trouble is, whenever I go, I end up adding to my stash and this time was no different.
Sitting in a half-price bin next to the counter were a couple of balls of King Cole Supa-Dupa extra chunky in a delicious moss green. It's shade 223, which I see they describe as 'sage' but it's a rich, dark, yellowy-green, nowhere near grey enough for 'sage' to be a good name for it. It's an enormous yarn, like a roving plied with a thread, 75% acrylic, 25% wool. The 200g balls only contain 52 metres, so its rrp of around £8 a ball is really quite expensive. I've since seen it online for even less, but the postage would more than make up for the price difference. It looks quite silky, but just stroking it brings up fuzzies, so I wonder how it will wash. I wasn't inspired by the patterns for it, but look at the colour and see leaves. Irresistible! Then, of course, I needed to buy a pair of 15mm needles to cope with such a huge yarn.
It's only a few weeks since I picked up the last couple of balls of a marbled greens/teal/purple chunky from the Narberth British Red Cross charity shop, because a leaf-patterned cowl came to mind when I saw them. (Okay, the teal and purple don't say 'leaves' to me so much as the green mix in the yarn, but I really like it, even though I don't normally go for purple.) It was called 'Jazz Tones Chunky' (shade 005), with no producer's name on it. The ball band has a postcode on it: BD16 2NT, which is the James C Brett wholesale address in Bingley. Interesting. The yarn looks very similar to the James C Brett Marble Chunky shade 28 same metreage, but at half the ball size (100g instead of 200g) and half the price.
I've also been making a few roses with my DK stash and plotting a 'rose garden' scarf (or something) with stems and leaves on the main section, then the roses towards the ends. It ground to a halt because I wanted a dark green yarn and couldn't find one unless I ordered online (which would be made disproportionately expensive due to postage costs).
All of this has led to much queueing of Ravelry projects (mainly for comparison). Reading the patterns, it looks like I'll need to learn a selection of techniques which I currently don't know, including various ways of visibly and invisibly increasing and decreasing, sorting out the difference between yarn over and yarn round needle, doing provisional/crochet cast-on, three-needle cast-off, and Kitchener grafting.
I went out with my friend J yesterday, and we started in a shop where I immediately spotted a dark green to add to my multicolour DK stash. We went to another store to look in the crafts section and I went into my 'kid in a sweet shop' mode. 'YOU', said J, as I squeed and oohed over blingy things and babbled on about my various projects, 'need to FOCUS!'
She is right, as always. I should be concentrating on creating a stock of things to sell. I should be making myself some fingerless mitts, but need to work some of this leafy loveliness out of my system. So my treat for tonight is to make a start on the Vite Cowl at the top of my Ravelry queue, using the mossy hyper-chunky yarn. First, though, I have to do some chores. Oh well, at least the washing up will warm up my hands!