Monday, June 15, 2015

These two things were supposed to be separated by about a week, but my computer had other plans last Wednesday and decided to go on a 5 day vacation, so pardon the long post today.

First on the docket is a new shawl pattern I did for A Verb For Keeping Warm, in Kristine Vejar's gorgeous hand dyed Annapurna yarn.  Her colors are so beautifully distinct and delicate - it was hard to pick just two off the entire wall of shades when I visited last Fall, but I thought these were just gorgeous together - Mesa and Topological.  The shop has an actual dyeing garden out back, and every one of her shades is created from natural, sustainable extracts she's researched and sourced from either her garden, a local farmer or some corner of the world.  If you are at all interested in the art of dyeing, Kristine is your girl.  Keep your eyes out for her first book on the subject, which is coming out later this year.  She's put her heart and soul into the business of yarn and fiber and it really, really shows.  I'm so happy to share my Greyhound Shawl with you and with AVFKW.

If you want to try some of Kristine's yarn yourself, she's making up some skeins of Annapurna just like mine and you can pre-order yours --  right  here!

About the shawl itself:

I wanted an easygoing summer knit when I cast on for this.  Something that could be worked on and put down - brought in the car, taken to the beach, put in a bag - but then picked up and resumed easily. (Because summer)  I went for an assymetric shape this time, and alternated simple lace with a distinct texture and garter stripes.  The construction does all the work, creating a lovely bias and crescent shape, and all I needed to do was follow the lace pattern.

The Greyhound Shawl is very easily modified for more or less stripes, different depths or widths of the different sections, or another overall size if your taste and stash dictates.  You could easily knit this in one color,  two as I did, or even make a version with multiple stripes (perhaps a gradient?).  I think a vareigated would be lovely in the garter, with a solid in the lace.  It's easy and fun and the possibilities are endless!

More information, the test knits, and the Ravelry purchase option is right here on the pattern page. 

The colors of the yarn were absolutely suited for one of my favorite gin drinks ever,  A Greyhound.
Pink grapefruit juice and gin are pretty much made for each other, in my humble opinion.

And this brings me to the second half of my blog post.  As you well know, my trip to the UK has opened up a few doors and I've been making a new circle of friends over the internet and ocean.  One of these lovely ladies is Kate of A Playful Day, and as we've been chatting back and forth, we realized that we both have a deep, undying love and respect for GIN.

So we decided to play a little.  We are calling this Cocktail Week in my Ravelry group and since the folks at Brighton Gin are part of my trunk show and cocktail party at YAK in Brighton this July, it seems quite appropriate to gather recipes ahead of time.

You can play along in a few different ways:

1.  The two of us decided we'd do a week of back and forth dueling gin recipes on our blogs.  I'm starting today with my Greyhound and then I'm throwing it over to her for tomorrow and she'll toss the ball back to me on Wednesday. So if you're a gin fan, read both our blogs this week and you can drink along with us....

2. If you have a recipe to share, add it in the Gin Recipe Thread on Ravelry for a chance to win one of my gin-based PDFs.  If you are coming to YAK, write that recipe down and bring it with you to the shop for a little extra activity... ;)

3.  If you are knitting one of my patterns or want to cast on for one, be sure to join in on the London Calling KAL in my Ravelry group for a chance to win some lovely vintage glasses in which to drink your next gin cocktails!  Any pattern is eligible to win, and there's still two weeks before I get on an airplane.

4.  Or - just read along and find something you like and have a drink.


Lucky for me, this shawl was well suited for my combined tasks today.

My spin on the Greyhound is below:

6 oz pink grapefruit juice
1.5 oz gin
2 sprigs of thyme
a dash of honey
.5 oz of fresh lime juice

Add gin, lime juice, honey and first sprig of thyme in bottom of glass.  Do not add ice yet, as it hardens the honey. Muddle.  Remove sprig and add ice and grapefruit juice.  Stir. Garnish with second sprig of thyme and lime slice.

There are a few other yummy things to do to with gin and grapefruit that I love so I'll also add some ideas below:

- salt the rim for a Salty Dog
- add 2 oz of soda water for a Fizzy Version
- make a gin and tonic with 2 oz of grapefruit juice (this is one of my favorite drinks)

That's enough for one post, don't you think?

Kate, your turn!  See you tomorrow...


Deb Hoss said...

I love the colors too. And the shawl!

Kim Thompson said...

I have a question about following this pattern. Who can I write to?