Catkins 2.0

The saga of the pussy willow sweater continues.  At last report, I had attempted too much contrast between the stems and the background, but not enough between the background and the catkins.  I took a picture before I frogged it, for archival and comparison purposes:

In this photo, the chart is working exactly like I want it to, but the colors are not doing it justice.  I also regretted my choice to work one sleeve at a time, which made it (somewhat) easier to put it out of its misery.  Kinda surreal to totally frog a knitted piece right out of existence.  I even reskeined the yarn, so it was like the first sleeve never even happened.  Messes with my head.

I thought I wanted to change to a black background, but as luck or alpacas would have it, there wasn't enough of the black in stock.  Instead, I changed to this complicated and textural charcoal gray version with a soft brown for the stems, and kept the fluffy silver angora for the catkins.  Sometimes designs just know what they want to be made of, even if I don't.  This is definitely one of those times:

So much better, no?  I'm back in love with it again.  Note also the two-at-a-time sleeves:  WAY more fun and comfortable on the longer circular needle.  I wonder if my contrast instincts got jacked up because all the colors are natural/neutral?  These shades are so much more subtle than I usually choose.  Turns out working with beige and gray is a completely different prospect than lime and fuschia.  Duh.

This yarn is made for stranding - so delightfully sticky, but still ultra soft.  My esteemed associates at Toots Le Blanc have struck the perfect balance between drape and strength, in my opinion.  And those who require next-to-the-skin softness in their yarn will find nothing to object to either. 

Hard to believe this will be my last post of 2009.  It's true what they say about time flying and having fun.  And boy am I having fun.  All this and a New Year's Eve party tomorrow, too!  Lucky Knitter, me.