My Adventures in Knitting, truly my Yarn-escape!

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Yarns: Pooling Plaid Protest Scarf and "Me Before You"

 (Please Note Pattern is found down below) 

     I started a Resistance group called "Resistance Knitters" last year.  A member came up with the idea of creating a scarf using ombre or pooling yarn from Red Heart as a resistance symbol.  One that would remind one of the Plaid Shirt Guy, a High School Senior who sat behind Trump during a rally last month and just had his natural reactions on his face to what Trump was saying.  He didn't realize till friends texted him halfway through that he was visually right over the president's shoulder and very visible.  Later he was escorted out.  To me the scarf can be an opportunity to talk up your views to someone noticing it, complimenting your scarf.  Be yourself, explain your views.  

     Talking up our political situation is good.  If you're Liberal and the other person is Conservative remember having an ability to cross over and talk to your political opposite is also very important!  We lack conversation in this country between the opposite parties.  Socially we aren't even supposed to talk politics.  So when are our differences hammered out?  We are like a big dysfunctional family.  A tip when talking to a Conservative (if you're a Liberal) remind them that we need moderate Republicans.  We need Republicans that can talk to Liberal Democrats and find solutions.  I truly believe this country needs a balance between the two sides.  That doesn't mean I agree with them, I just believe healthy debate and discussion is important to find good solutions.  This scarf perhaps is more of a reminder to the person wearing it to engage in positive conversation.  Remember to kindly bridge gaps between people you might not agree with.  But talk, its important.  Also reminding people to vote in the Mid-terms, especially young adults is very good.  For further reading on some upbeat viewpoints I'd recommend Van Jones book "Beyond the Messy Truth: How We Came Apart, How We Come Together".

     This new yarn - Super Saving Pooling was primarily developed for crocheters.  Red Heart replied to my inquiry about knitting techniques and said they are in the process of developing knitting patterns.  So I was on my own.  I spent a weekend trying to do the crochet but I realized it just wasn't me (after a day of stress and cramped hands).  (If you are a crocheter here's the pattern and video on how to make a scarf that pools in crochet - Perfect Planned Pooling Scarf).  So after lots of rip outs and watching this video on pooling in knitting - Knit Argyle Color Pooling, I started again late at night and finally figured it out.  In the morning I ripped out one last time and created a bigger color jog and that was perfect!  The yarn can be bought at JoannMary Maxim or ordered from Red Heart.

Please note that this scarf is made with the color "Haute". Different colors in Red Hearts Pooling yarn might have a different number of colors in their sequence and have to be set up differently. I have hints below the pattern on how to do it.

 Here's my pattern -

On Ravelry - Pooling Plaid Scarf

Instructions on knitting scarf-

Please watch this video to help you - Knit Argyle Color Pooling.

I knit this up on #8 straight needles on  Red Hearts Pooling yarn in Haute, a predesigned yarn that creates an argyle pattern.

This pooling yarn color Haute has 6 repeats of color. To do the whole sequence in a row made it wider than I wanted it, so I halved it for a thin scarf. So each row is 3 colors and every other row the same color shows up. 

Casting on:

To work up a scarf you need to start out just right, then you're good to go. My cast on was a Continental Knit On (video -knit on cast). Now to do this you need to make a row of cast on out of the first whole color sequence (to save time you can start casting on about 1 1/2 colors in). For instance, I started with red in my sequence, to cast on I just started after red, and into the White (you can rip out the unused cast on stitches later). So cast on till you reach just before the first color repeats itself, red for me, but don't knit the red (or whatever your first color is in the sequence).

First Row:

 Now knit one row, k2, p2 till you use half your colors, three colors. At the end of the row, you want to pull off some stitches that you just did so you have an offset (your color shifts to one side). I pulled off 4 stitches (again you can pull out the unused cast on stitches later). So I have 32 stitches. Your tension might be different than mine and you might have a different count of stitches. You should be OK. Just remember an even number of stitches, divisible by 4 will begin and end with K2, P2, which I prefer. The whole process of the cast on is so you start at the beginning of a color sequence. The pulling off stitches is so you have a color shift.  

Remaining Rows - Just continuing to do K2, P2 and enjoy watching the argyle plaid unfold before your eyes!

Cast Off - Cast off when you reached your desired length. For a loose cast off use a size larger needle such as #9 or #10.

Optional Fringe - How To Add A Fringe

Watch this video first before you start and remember I halved the color sequence for a thinner scarf.  You might want a wide scarf and then cast on the entire sequence of color for a thick scarf, play with it. The video is a big help -  Knit Argyle Color Pooling.

Different Color-
If you use a different color combination than Haute in Super Saving Pooling yarn the yarn might have a different number of colors but this should help you figure out a scarf in any color combination.  Just do either a wide scarf with all the colors and use the technique described above for how to set up the cast on but use the entire first set of colors to make your cast on to give you room (also this video is helpful - Knit Argyle Color Pooling).  Or experiment with halving your colors like I did.

     After reading "Still Me" I had to start the series with "Me Before You".  I'm totally not disappointed!  I love Jojo Moyes writing style.  But from trying to describe the story to my husband, there's no way to do it without making it sound depressing.  But her writing style is funny, endearing and engaging.  It's also a tearful read.  Here's another blog's summary (longer, more detailed) - "Amy's Bookshelf".  Goodreads - "Me Before You".

      I finished "Me Before You" this morning.  Leaving the last chapter for my cup of tea.  Immediately I downloaded the next book.  I want to own the books but I was too impatient to wait till Friday when I can get to my second-hand bookshop.  The third book "Still Me" I got with my BOTM and I still want to buy the first two.  I just love owning books that I've really enjoyed, not to just revisit someday but also that feeling you get when you look at your bookcase and see your books, like old friends.

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  1. Your scarf and resistance knitting looks interesting. We read Me Before You as a book group selection and had a great discussion but that is the only book in the series I have read. Now I am curious about others.

  2. Wow! Resistance knitting FTW! That scarf is AWESOME! And, go you for figuring out that who pooling issue!