Knitting autumn retreatAUTUMN IDEAS
Here we are again in another autumn, arachnids. This year is almost ending but it won’t end before we deliver the surprises we’re preparing. As you know, I’m learning knitting since last year and I’ve tried to include a “Knitting corner” in every post but this year I decided to take advantage of this cold to really devote myself to this craft, so this post is a “Knitting Special”. But before continuing first let me tell you about what we were up to this November!
First thing first, let’s give you some context: Merino Feroz it’s a knit café (or pub) located in El Escorial, Madrid. I’ve never been there (though I’d love to!) but I follow them in Facebook. To celebrate their first anniversary, they decided to organize a knitting retreat in Burgos and of course, after reading about it I was instantly convinced so it only took me two minutes to confirm our attendance to this event (obviously!).
The knitting trip detail: sleeping in a rural cottage in the outskirts of Burgos in a small town called Sotillo de la Ribera, knitting a pattern specially designed for this trip, tour around Burgos (in the Abbey of Santa María la Real de Las Huelgas, famous for their ancient knitting garments), eating local food made in the town’s wood oven, and visiting old castles and wine cellars for our partners that don’t knit (the technology arachnid was there), what could go wrong? Well, ¡nothing!
First, two of our partners, Javier and Carmen (she was a knitter, he wasn’t) share their car to us and took us from Madrid to our destination so our biggest problem (transportation) was easily solved. When we arrived to the cottage, there was a mountain of wool skeins waiting for us at the entrance! Just imagine our happiness and their befuddlement :). From there on it was all skeins on my side and wines on his side.
It’s worth mentioning or brief tour through Burgos, a city we didn’t know beforehand but now we swear we’ll come back to visit the Human Evolution Museum. We saw some curiosities like the Saint Santiago “puppet” that knighted the kings of the past, the beautiful architecture of the abbey and the cathedral, and the lovely streets with autumn trees. Another interesting thing were the old wine cellars everywhere (they visited a 16th century one) which were hidden in remote places and that remained unnoticed from the outside.
We left completely satisfied with our trip and we thank Merino Feroz for this great idea and organization.
Burgos Aran Vest
Let’s not derail from the topic: during our knitting retreat in Burgos you could choose between making a beret and a vest, and I chose the vest (I think berets are not really my thing). Finally, when I started knitting I decided I wanted to gain a new level as knitter and learn to make sleeves, my first sleeves!
I used 6 mm needles and 4 skeins of 100% merino wool Malabrigo Worsted in Sunset, though I ended up stashing almost the entire fourth skein, so if you only want to make this pattern as a vest it should only take 2 skeins. This yarn surprised me because it was really soft and also uneven, so sometimes is thinner or wider —perfect for beginners like me with tension problems. Also, it keeps looking good even after ripping your knitting several times.
The vest and the beret were designed by the girls working at Merino Feroz, taking inspiration from the “tracery work from Burgos’ Cathedral” and its filigree-looking architecture. This pattern is written in a clear way and it’s made top-down in rounds. I think this pattern is not published but if you have interest in this pattern, contact them so they can tell you how to get it.
I had this pattern in mind since the beginning of 2016 but I didn’t feel confident enough to try to make it so I just made other projects until I finally decided and it was already a chilly autumn so I used the 2 skeins of 100% merino wool of Malabrigo Arroyo in Glitter and my 4 mm needles for the M size.
This pattern has a cute lace that is worked slow but sure if you follow the pattern step by step. The most difficult part for me was the collar part because I’ve never done one before and it really didn’t turn out how I wanted it. Also, at the end I rushed myself because I wanted to finish quickly and didn’t do a good job sewing the garment (though this is not the pattern’s fault).
The pattern was well-written and the only thing that I missed was more and better pictures of the finished garment.
I started knitting this in summer but I didn’t get to finish it on time and that’s why it’s made with cotton and silk. This is the pattern I chose after making the Top 40 so I could notice I was getting better at making some things, for example, I sewed the sides perfectly this time but I still have some problems with the collars, and this time the problem was that it was too loose.
For this I used 4 skeins and a half of Sublime Yarns Cotton Silk DK in color 445 and 3.75 mm needles. This mix of cotton and silk was perfect because the cotton gives it a nice feeling and the silk has a subtle shine that makes me fall in love with it. I hope that when the temperatures rise it will be a breezy fabric! For now, I only have hope because I had to use it as a layer over other garments but because of that I know that if you make it with a warm yarn like wool it would be perfect for cool weathers.
I recommend this pattern because it’s clear and it made me feel everything was easier than it really was, and it was so fast to make. The pattern is the almost the same for the back and front part so it will be easier the second time you make it.
1920’s Lace Headband Crochet Pattern
Even though this was a knitting post, l I didn’t have the heart to say no to our beloved crochet so I share with you this free pattern.
I made this garment for the first time two years ago and it always caught the eye of people and that’s why I decided to make it in different colors as gifts for my coworkers. This headband is perfect for autumn when the weather is not cold enough to use a hat but you want something warm over your ears.
I made all the headbands with a 5 mm hook, 1 skein of Merino Sport and half skeing of Darling from Katia. The skein of Merino Sport runs out a little before finishing it but I had similar colors in my stash and used them. Darling is enough for two headbands. Darling looks beautiful paired with a good contrast color and it gives it a unique look.
This pattern is similar to the one I used for the Magnolia Vintage: the Catherine’s Wheel stitch. This graphic from Marly Bird can be useful to understand it. An important difference between my headbands and the original pattern is that I only do it until Row 9 and I finish immediately with Row 12 because otherwise it’s too big for me.
The Catherine’s Wheel stitch is a little confusing if you don’t have that much experience but I think the videos in the pattern page and this graphic will help.
I hope you liked this special report about our knitting retreat in Burgos and the autumn knitting special post. We’re always thinking about new things to share with you, especially if they are easy to make.
In this post we only have one free pattern but we are planning new things before the year ends.
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