Wading in the Ocean at Santa Monica

I was positively dying over $5 in Paris after Christmas. It’s a dead simple striped, seamless sweater and I totally had to make one. Immediately.

I started it out with some orange and gray KnitPicks Swish Worsted, but quickly figured out that I didn’t have enough of the carrot orange. Lo and behold, KnitPicks had discontinued the color and no one who had it stashed on Ravelry was willing to part with it. After much pouting, I went in a totally different direction. I picked up some Berroco Vintage in gold and teal at Windy Knitty and started over.

Of course, I called it $5 in Chicago. (Even though the yarn cost me considerably more than $5.)

Then I was a terrible knitting blogger and didn’t take any photos of it. Well, in my defense, self-portraits are hard, and having to shoot in the winter is hard since the light is gone, and so not much knitwear photography has been getting done lately.

But then I went to Los Angeles on a short vacation to visit friends and just happened to wear my $5 in Paris to the beach in Santa Monica. First, I made one of my friends take a picture of me with this cannon, just so I could get a good picture of the sweater for the blog.

$5 in Paris Sweater

I’m told this cannon is a famous Santa Monica landmark, though no one could tell me why.

Then I ran around a bit in the cold Pacific surf, and a friend snapped this one, which I completely adore.

Wading in the Ocean at Santa Monica

I love this photo so much that I made it my profile picture on Facebook.

A few notes about this sweater:

  • It is very stretchy. I made a size large, but probably could have gotten away with a medium.
  • I did the neck with size 6 needles to tighten up the boat neck, and it was still very loose. Best to wear it with a tank top underneath.
  • This sucker knits up hella quick. Start to finish, it only took about a week to make. (Caveat: I have no life and may have neglected chores.)

Before flying back to frozen Chicago, my friend Dave took me to the Fashion District in search of yarn. The Fashion District is a misleading name, since there’s no clothing to be found here. Instead, you’ll find shop after shop of fabrics, so many bolts that the inventory literally spills out onto the sidewalks all up and down the street. It reminded me a lot of China.

Fashion District in Los Angeles

Every sidewalk in front of every store in the Fashion District looked like this.

We found a decent selection of yarn at Michael Levine. It struck me as being somewhere between a JoAnn and a much nicer LYS – a cavernous fluorescent lit warehouse with lots of acrylic, novelty and baby yarns, but a surprising selection of nicer stuff, too. The set up was weird. I couldn’t just carry my yarn to the register. There was an attendant/salesperson who wrote up a ticket and then deposited the yarn with the cashier on my behalf. I then had to present my ticket in order to pay for and be reunited with my yarn. I picked out two skeins of Manos del Uruguay Maxima in colorway M8881, also known as Beehive.

Manos del Uruguay Maxima, M8881, Beehive

I’m going to make it into a Heulwen Cowl and a hat to be determined.

Heulwen Cowl by Abigail Phelps

I’ve been a total sucker for chevron patterns lately. You mostly see the fat end of the cowl in this photo, but most of the pattern is the same two rows and is easy to memorize, so it has become my latest train project.

I came back from sunny, warm Los Angeles to find Chicago in the throes of the coldest cold spell in two years. I find this extremely depressing and have been alternating between whining and plotting my escape.

Los Angeles 2013

Oh, Los Angeles, how I miss you… I hope I can come back soon!