Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Katia Triana Lux

I've been resisting funky novelty yarn for.....oh, as long as I can remember.

It's just "not me".

But now that I work one day a week at Cotton-by-Post (north London yarn shop), I walk past the Katia shelf umpty times a day.  And I fondle the scarf that hangs there just as often!  It's a magic scarf - and like a siren's song it lures me close to touch it.

Last week, I broke down and bought three balls of the stuff.  The scarf pattern is free with the yarn purchase.  I decided (a) I should know how to knit it since customers ask, and (b) that my three nieces (aged 6, 7, and 8) should each have one for Christmas.

I'd heard that the scarf was a "quick knit", and after the initial clumsiness and learning curve, it really was!  I figure I could easily knit one in two hours!  Yes.  Two hours!

So I made a little tutorial for how this yarn knits up into a scarf.  The photos aren't brilliant, but I hope you get the idea.

Katia Triana Lux; 100g; 30m (33yd);
95% acrylic, 5% polyester; cold gentle machine wash,
no dryer; no iron;  $13.99

All you need is one ball of yarn per scarf and 7-8mm needles.  I tried different needles, and the one I found easiest to use was my 8mm 16" bamboo circular.  The addi turbo was too slick and slippery for the yarn.  The 7.5mm Aero needles were simply too long and awkward.

16" 8mm bamboo circular needle, and
Katia Triana Lux (colour #33 - lilac and purple with gold flecks)

The next step is to spread the yarn out and to figure out which end is the thinner one and which is the thicker.

Thin end at top; thick end at bottom

Now for the cast on.  Weave your needle into 8 of the top holes from back to front (this is important so you don't twist the stitches).

Weave 8 stitches onto the needle from
back to front (don't worry about the edges)

This next step is a little awkward, but I found that if I held my mouth in just the right way, I could manage it!  Once the 8 stitches are on the needle, turn your work in readiness to knit.  Insert the needle into the first stitch.

Insert needle into first stitch

With your left or right hand (depending on which hand you hold the yarn in), spread out the yarn a little and look for the thin open loop at the top - the next one in line is the one you need.  Yes, it feels clumsy at first, but you'll get the hang of it.  Now knit the stitch as normal.

Put the loop onto the needle and pull it through as if to knit

Knit all 8 stitches.  This gets easier and faster the more you do it.  I also found that the heavier the scarf became (= the more of it I knit and had on my needles), the easier it was to handle).

First row completed

The whole scarf is knit in garter stitch (knit every stitch on every row).

Now if you never listen to anything I ever write, please listen to this.  Whenever you put this scarf down to go off and do something else, please, please, please, don't do as I did.  Put point protectors on both ends of the needle!

Read that last sentence again OUT LOUD.  Twice I put this rotten lovely scarf down, and twice the stitches somehow fell off.  The first time, the ladder ran all the way to the start!  Ugh!  The second time, I was able to rescue the stitches, but lost about 18in worth of knitting.  Ugh!

Point protectors prevent the stitches coming off the needle

When you get to the end of the ball - well, within 20ins or so - cast off in the usual manner.  Easy peasy!

And a final few thoughts.  The yarn twists around as you knit, so frequently, you have to stop, put the knitting down (don't forget the needle point protectors!) and untwist the yarn.  It's a little irritating, but since the project moves along so quickly, it's no biggie.

I actually enjoyed the knit.  A photo of the first of my three scarves is below.  I'm certain Emily will love it!

Emily's scarf.  I used Katia Triana Lux
(colour #32 -burgundy and cherry with gold flecks)
EDIT:  I just finished the second scarf for Jaycee.  It only took me 1.5 hours!  Sweet.  Great for an emergency gift!

Jaycee's scarf.  I used Katia Trinia Lux
(colour #33 - lilac and purple with gold flecks)

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