Someone, Quick, Get Me A Yak

Swatching the most amazing blend of silk/yak yarn ever before discover (Lang Yarn Asia).

Swatching the most amazing blend of silk/yak yarn ever before discover (Lang Yarn Asia).

Swatching the most amazing blend of silk/yak yarn ever before discover (Lang Yarn Asia).

  1. Go to LYS with a very specific list of yarns to purchase for pre-selected projects to be knit this year. Vow not to stray.
  2. While LYS is winding pre-selected skeins on swift and you have no choice but to browse shop while waiting (they must do this on purpose…), never before seen skeins of a silk/yak blend catches your eye. The colorways are OUT OF THIS UNIVERSE gorgeous. The price is higher than you typically go for, but it’s your (almost) birthday and you get 30% off. Two not-cheap skeins jump out, bite you, and land at the cash register. Whoops.
  3. Shove aside recent lace project to commence silk/yak knit. So much for First-Arrival to the Stash, First-Knit Policy. When it comes to extra soft yarn, rules do not apply. Knitting is a lawless land.
  4. Fondle yarn for an unusual length of time. Yak yarn has never before presented appeal. The local (tiny!) zoo has two yaks on display, both of which are dirty, matted, and don’t suggest KNIT ME!!!. Consider options for jumping fence with scissors to source yak fur (hair?) directly. They LOOK friendly, after all. What could possibly go wrong?
  5. Get stumped at sourcing silk worm colony. Decide to skip jumping fence to groom yaks too. Easier to go to LYS instead.
  6. Night 1: Spend hours and hours browsing online stitch dictionaries for THE PERFECT stitch pattern until becoming cross eyed. Special yarn generates a particular vein of OCD knitting perfection. Eliminate all options with too many cables (holding stitches in back and front). Decide that will take too long. Focus on patterns that look pretty but will be easy. Additional criteria: knits AND purls proportioned such a way to eliminate any possibility of curling, rolling, or other undesired scenarios. There will be no blocking. I think.
  7. Night 2: Swatch endlessly and come up with zilch. Nothing quite right. Lots of silly mistakes and do-overs. Blame the wine. Seems impossible to get past row 4. Of a swatch. Frustrated. Tired. Solace oneself with more wine. Feels like Day 1 of learning to knit. Nothing looks good enough.
  8. Night 3: Decide on a stitch pattern. Finally. Three rows of “final” swatch at last knit.
  9. Night 4: Finish swatch. Measure. Quick math (which is probably wrong). Cast on 260 stitches. (This baby is knit in the round). Take EXTRA EXTRA EXTRA EXTREME caution not to twist while joining round. This happened the last time a circular cowl was knit. Infinity cowls are not for me.
  10. Knit four rounds and decide, despite EXTREME CAUTION, the cowl is indeed twisted. Good grief. (Explicative. Explicative. Explicative.)
  11. Frog.
  12. Night 5: Cast on. Again. Knit on round. Ask: twisted? Knit another round. Ask: twisted? Continue as such for five rounds. Determine cowl doesn’t appear twisted. But that’s what you thought THE LAST TIME.
  13. Next day. Bring to work for second opinion. Result: NOT TWISTED. Hallelujah!
  14. Hope all goes well for the remained of project. Try not to think about the zoo yaks anymore.

Joining Ginny and listening to Eleanor and Park*. Like all Rainbow Rowell books, this one has yet to disappoint.  I am a huge fan.

*Affiliate link. Thank you for being you!

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32 Comments

  • Reply jody May 4, 2016 at 5:30 am

    lol i think you described every knitter 😉

    btw a way to help reduce the twistiness is to knit a few rows flat before joining. it does mean you have a small edge to sew up but just use your yarn tail for it.

  • Reply alovelyhomemadelife May 4, 2016 at 5:56 am

    We are soulmates! Love this post–enjoy your yak!

    • Reply Andrea @ This Knitted Life May 4, 2016 at 6:37 am

      Thank you! Love you new knitting chair and nook. Jealous, I am!

      • Reply alovelyhomemadelife May 4, 2016 at 6:38 am

        Come over any time to sit and knit awhile! We’d have such fun, wouldn’t we?

  • Reply zeta (kalianapodi.wordpress.com) May 4, 2016 at 6:20 am

    Your posts are hilarious but in the meantime so painfully true!!!!

  • Reply Tina May 4, 2016 at 6:46 am

    I think that says it all … we knitters are so much alike! While buying yarn at my LYS, almost done and handing over the credit card, the owner, says “hey, did you see that new yarn over there”. Yup …. it was included in my purchase too! Fun post today 🙂

  • Reply smythsky May 4, 2016 at 8:44 am

    I LOVE YAK! I found some pure yak yarn at a Christmas market last year (called The Rocking Yak) and ALSO made it into a cowl, because that’s what yak seems to call for: aka snuggling. It’s my favourite cowl and I love it to pieces. Good choice!

  • Reply pumpkin sunrise May 4, 2016 at 1:18 pm

    you and I could be best friends when we are out and about in a yarn store 🙂 I have knit with wool with yak in it, and it was heavenly 🙂 🙂

    • Reply Andrea @ This Knitted Life May 10, 2016 at 9:22 pm

      Aw. I definitely didn’t think yak would be so soft. I thought it would be scratchy, if anything. Luckily I was wrong.

  • Reply Stefanie May 4, 2016 at 1:30 pm

    LOL. Yak sounds divine. Kudos to the ppl who shave those animals and then card out all the debris from goodness knows where!

  • Reply Louise May 4, 2016 at 4:32 pm

    Your yarn sounds wonderful! Great post!

  • Reply itsallaboutpurple May 4, 2016 at 5:11 pm

    hehehe, keeping’ it real, we are all cut from the same cloth or perhaps the same yarn!! at least you had something to share, all i did was frog this week, nothing to share ;(

  • Reply Alina May 5, 2016 at 5:52 am

    Oh, I’ve been dreaming to try yak fiber for so long! The problem with me is that I am a garment knitter. When I see a skein of yarn, I see a sweater, and as you understand the price would be not so delicious 🙂 Anyway, I love your yarn and the texture you chose looks amazing!

    • Reply Andrea @ This Knitted Life May 10, 2016 at 9:25 pm

      I just cast off the last stitch and it might be the best thing I have ever knit in my life. Seriously.

  • Reply bonnyknits May 5, 2016 at 6:08 am

    This is completely understandable: that yarn would have somehow jumped into my arms as well. It’s so gorgeous. I can’t wait to see what you create with it!
    ps: next time it’s twisted, just call it a design feature. 😀

  • Reply knittedblissjc May 6, 2016 at 6:40 am

    haha, all so true and I think we can all relate! Is that the Stockholm scarf that you have have cast on?

    • Reply Andrea @ This Knitted Life May 10, 2016 at 9:27 pm

      You know, it is just some,thing random I made up. I will have to look up the Stockholm scarf…maybe so,wine else’s brain is twins with mine!

    • Reply Andrea @ This Knitted Life May 11, 2016 at 6:48 am

      Oh my goodness! You designed the Stockholm scarf. Duh. There is a similar mock cable there? But I think your pattern has more going on. I love it! Great mines think similarly, right? Xoxo.

  • Reply Miss Manitas May 7, 2016 at 12:54 pm

    Supercute yarn!! I love the color and the pattern!! amazing!

  • Reply Andrea @ This Knitted Life May 10, 2016 at 9:28 pm

    Thank you. I know I am biased, but I do love it!

  • Reply A Yak-Tacular Success - This Knitted Life May 15, 2016 at 4:01 am

    […] from my slight issue twisting the cast on join, I didn’t screw it up. Not even […]

  • Reply Linto Creek Cowl Pattern Release - This Knitted Life August 6, 2016 at 4:03 am

    […] seriously loved this cowl from the very beginning. The silk-yak yarn was just so dreamy to work with. This is easily my favorite cowl I have ever […]

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