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August 21, 2005

River Update -- Week 1

Wow we've grown quickly! We're almost at the 40 mark. I hadn't read much about River in blogland so I wasn't sure how much interest there was -- clearly I was wrong!

Since most of us haven't started yet I thought I'd tackle a couple of questions that seem to be popping up, and invite comments from everyone.


It looks like almost everyone is using KS (Haze, Spray, or Night). I'm really interested to see how the 2 new ones make up. I've heard one of my LYSs will be getting them in next week (yeah yeah, you girls across the pond have already seen them).

Since about half of you have yet to pick a yarn I thought I'd mention a few other potential substitutes.

Julia emailed and suggested Douceur et Soie, and fellow KALer Denise (no blog) is using this in hers. This one has the same fiber content and KSH and is a couple USD less expensive too.

Julia also suggested Karabella Lace Mohair, but mentioned that there's no silk in it. The fiber content is 60% mohair/21% polyester/8% wool. It's a great buy though. For a couple dollars more than KSH you get more than twice the yardage! One ball of this would do River.

Another option is Imperiale. It's about a third less expensive than KSH, also has a great color palette, and similar to Karabella is missing the silk. Its content is 80% mohair/20% polyamid.

Fellow KALer Donni is using Crystal Palace Kid Merino. At about a third of the price of KSH it's a nice alternative too. Its fiber content is 28% Kid Mohair/28% Merino/44% Nylon.

Of course, you don't have to do this in mohair (I'm not!). Knitpicks has some great Laceweight yarns to choose from. I went with Alpaca Cloud in Tidepool (dontcha love that name for River?). Once I get my yarn I'll swatch it up and let you know what I think.

As for colors -- pink is winning bigtime. Between Blushes (softer pink) and Candy Girl (shocking pink) 6 of you have opted for a pink River.


Evangeline had asked in the comments about needles. I typically like to stay with bamboo when knitting mohair, but my normal Addi Naturas just seem a little dull for the job. Any suggestions?

Knitting with Beads

A couple of you have mentioned that you've never knit with beads before. I had wanted to include a good link for you to visit but I cannot find one! If any of you know of a good online tutorial please let me know. I was hoping to find one with pictures.

Another River WIP

Hazel left me a comment that she's almost done with her River (in Dewberry). The link is to her latest post which shows it just shy of the halfway point. Pretty!

Yarn Swap?

Jessica mentioned in the comments that she has some leftover KSH in Toffee from her Birch that she'd like to trade with someone. Any takers?

August 21, 2005 in River Along | Permalink


I was thinking of using Clover Ivory needles. For some reason no one knows they exist and they are impossible to find, but I guess they are similar to bryspun. They are a bit flexible and warm up with your hands. Once my yarn arrives, I write up a report if they are actually good for ksh.

Posted by: yahaira | Aug 21, 2005 9:05:07 AM

I started mine this weekend - just couldn't wait with that KSH sitting there looking all soft and wonderful - I'm using Pony Rosewood needles. I've never these used before, they are great! The points are good for picking up the YO stitch when working the K2togs, the yarn slides nicely, too. I'll try ot post a pic of the needles on my blog later today.

Posted by: Jackie | Aug 21, 2005 9:56:30 AM

Hi, I'm a new lurker to your blog.

I followed your link to Hazel's blog to see her River stole and, from there, followed a link to a knitting with beading tutorial that another blogger wrote up. This one is a bit different as you don't string all the beads on your yarn at the start, but rather crochet them in as you go:


I think I need to go out and get the Rowan 38 book, now. :)

Posted by: KatieLiz | Aug 21, 2005 10:33:48 AM

Looks like we may have matching Rivers. I have a hank of Alpaca Cloud in Tidepool from my Secret Pal that I'm planning to use. I almost bought some KSH at a 30% off sale, but managed to stick to my guns on knitting from my stash.
I didn't realize there were beads involved though, so now I'll have to shop for those.

Posted by: Jessica | Aug 21, 2005 12:04:49 PM

I think Crystal Palace Bamboo needles are great for mohair. They are polished with a nice glide and have super pointy tips. The joins can be a little obtrusive though. And they have switched to a new adhesive so they should no longer do that falling apart at the join thing.

Posted by: Jessica | Aug 21, 2005 12:53:01 PM

Another yarn suggestion is Madil Kid Seta instead of KSH. I'm not sure if it's easy to get but it's cheaper. Also, one of my friends swear by their Denise needles when knitting with KSH. She's tried all different kinds of needles and likes knitting KSH with Denise needles the best.

Posted by: monica | Aug 21, 2005 3:18:51 PM

Debi has just post a tutorial(August 12) on easy bead-knitting on her blog (http://fluffyknitterdeb.blogspot.com/). There is no need to thread the beads in advance and I think it is much easier.
I am using Karabella lace mohair in charcoal and Denise needles ... not the best choice of needles but I am too lazy to get something else. Just started yesterday and am in the first repeat.

Posted by: Agnes | Aug 21, 2005 4:41:10 PM

Also, this is my first real big lace project, so I didn't know what "lace method cast on" was. I think maybe other beginners would have the same problem. I ended up using the loop cast on and I think it works. ;)

Posted by: Agnes | Aug 21, 2005 4:48:00 PM

I am using KSH in dewberry. I ordered some bryspun needles from elann. I have never used them before but have heard they work really well for lace. Jessica, if you would still like to trade I have some KSH in liqueur.

Posted by: Dawn | Aug 21, 2005 7:29:10 PM

I clicked on your link to Hazel's site and she has a link there to a tutorial on beaded knitting. I saved it to the favorites. So, looks like you provided that link after all.

Posted by: Cambria W | Aug 21, 2005 11:58:51 PM

Jody, thanks for your comments on my blog re. River. It's now finished apart from beaded knot and also not blocked yet. Not quite sure how it should be blocked but I'm really pleased with it! You asked about a bead knitting tutorial. There is one here http://www.wam.umd.edu/~brwb/index3.htm It's not audio but extremely clear instructions and diagrams. Then there is also the link that Debi provided where the crochet hook is used and no need to thread beads. Thanks, Debi!

Posted by: Hazel | Aug 22, 2005 1:18:26 PM

I have used many different needles for lace mohair and I would highly recommend Bryspun's white plastic straights for this project if you are doing it in the mohair. I am usually an addi turbo girl, but with fine mohair addis can make you feel like you're dancing on ice. On the other hand, I find that wood grabs too much and I end up fighting with my needles the whole way. The Bryspun's are the perfect middle ground. A little grab, but not too much.

For those of you who noticed that there are beads on the shawl as well as on the little tie/holder thingy, beware that Rowan has omitted bead placement instructions as far as I can tell. (If I'm missing something, I know someone out there will let me know!) I haven't seen an errata sheet yet, but if you want the beads, you may have a little extra work in store.

Posted by: Julia | Aug 22, 2005 7:04:54 PM

i second that emotion on the bryspuns. i recently finished birch and think i would have gone completely mad w/o their sharp, pointy ends. all the better for grabbing all those teeny tiny stitches--particularly the K2togTBL and such. i've also read about people sharpening their bamboos to a point for a similar effect. i'd imagine you'd also have to do a bit of sanding to smooth the edges.

Posted by: kate | Aug 28, 2005 10:25:59 AM

HI there - I have cast on and done 19 lines already - will try and post a photo on my blog soon. I am using Crystal Palace Bamboo Circulars and they work beautifully with the Crystal Palace Kid Merino.

Posted by: Donyale | Sep 3, 2005 6:57:07 AM

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