The Blaster KAL starts today! For my second blaster, I really wanted to do something different from my first. I wanted a warmer color, so I was looking for orange or red; I wanted regular, non-superwash wool; and I wanted a solid color, which made thing surprisingly tricky. All of my favorite DK wool yarns are from indie dyers who do semi-solids on superwash bases. I like Jo Sharp’s DK, but it’s a little tricky to get. It was a conundrum, so I started knitting swatches with basically anything that might be close that was in my stash.

Blaster_KAL_Yarn_01

I finally settled on Quince & Co Chickadee, which is not technically a DK. Their website lists is as Sport/DK, but it’s on the lighter side. I do get the right number of stitches per inch, but it takes more rows per inch. As I’ve mentioned in previous posts on gauge, row gauge differences can be an indicator that you’ve got a different fabric than the pattern sample features, and that’s true in this case. The sample is knit moderately densely, and my chickadee swatch is a much airier fabric. I’m okay with that and understand how that will change my sweater, so I’m moving forward with it. I’ll have to make some adjustments to work with my new row gauge, because if I don’t my sweater will be 2.5 inches too short, but it won’t be too complicated. I need to add some extra rows to the underarms to make sure that they’re the right depth, and then the body will be easy to adjust the length on.

Blaster_KAL_Yarn_02

I picked the colorway Winesap because it caught my eye when I was at Tolt looking for yarn. It’s a nice berry-toned red, and I like that it’s a little different from the shade of red on my last cardigan project. I thought that Blaster would look really good in red, and I kind of wanted to use red because of this excellent post on how characters are color coded on Halt and Catch Fire, the TV show that helped inspire the design. (That post contains Season 2 spoilers.) But I didn’t want to knit two sweaters in a row that were the exact same shade of red. My previous cardigan was knit using a Rowan Yarn, but Quince & Co.’s Peak’s Ferry is a very similar true red, and I didn’t know that Quince has added more reds to the line. I was so excited to find this softer-toned red yarn and am looking forward to having more shades of red in my wardrobe.

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