January 23, 2011

Not only seem I to be interested in Japanese sewing patterns these days, I also seem to have developed a taste for Japan-inspired knitwear. This is what became of the gorgeous Madelinetosh Sock skeins I bought in London last November:

Pattern: Hari by Olga Buraya-Kefelian
Yarn: Madelinetosh Sock [Colour: Composition Book Grey]
Needles: 2,5 mm
[More project details on Ravelry]

Hari [jap.: needle, spike] is one of last year’s creations by extraordinarily talented, Japan-based designer Olga Buraya-Kefelian. Her projects often seem to get inspired by Asian aesthetics, and I especially like those of her designs that play with folded textures and/or unusual shapes and silhouettes. Knitting Hari felt actually more like building a three-dimensional sculpture than working on a plain fabric:

The pattern comes with a lot of wearing options: One can wear it as a scarf, a cowl, a snood or even a bolero [using snaps as closing devices]. Since I like the design best when wrapped around the neck as a loose cowl, with the little ‘needles’ or ‘spikes’ folding around each other every time in a slightly different, but always very beautiful way, I decided to do a provisional cast-on and to transform the knitted fabric into a big loop at the end of the knitting process. In the end, I grafted the living stitches together with Kitchener Stitch:

Although one can see the grafted part quite clearly [well, at least I can, since I know exactly where it is ;-)], I am quite amazed about how organically it integrates into the overall structure of the pattern.

The Madelinetosh Sock yarn is a wonderfully soft and beautiful yarn and a dream to knit with, although for this particular project a slightly sturdier fibre with a little more body would maybe have been better to emphasize the three-dimensionality of the pattern. Despite my knitting the project on 2.5mm needles instead of the 3.75mm, the blocking opened the stitches a little too much for my taste, and the ‘needles’ respectively ‘spikes’ are now slightly less prominent than in their pre-blocking state. Maybe using a reinforcing yarn like Habu stainless steel might have helped with this minor problem.

So much regarding my latest knitting project. I am very happy with my new cowl [isn’t that colour just gorgeous?!] and can already foresee abundant wear in the very near future.

Now, off to the next little project on my needles [more on that, hopefully soon …]!

2 Responses to “Hari”

  1. That’s absolutely beautiful. It went in my queue as soon as I had seen in on Olga’s blog. Thinking about your comments on using a sturdier yarn, I think personally I’d struggle to find something that would have more sturdiness but still be soft enough to wear as a cowl. I hope you love wearing it!

  2. yarnsnob said

    Absolutely stunning! It’s such a shame the spikes are not as prominent but just imagine the Madelinetosh around your neck :)

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