Late winter in Arizona is glorious. Mountain Man and I drank it in this weekend with a climbing trip to "Magma Gardens," east of the Superstition Mountains. The manzanita were awash in blossoms and buzzing with bees.
On the drive there, I finished sewing on the buttons to my Shalom cardigan. And I'm smitten! The yarn is probably the most marvelous yarn I've ever had the pleasure of knitting. It's a handspun yarn in fawn alpaca and tussah silk from Smooth as Silk Alpaca Ranch, and it beautifully combines all my favorite yarn qualities: soft, lustrous, artisinal, earthy, luxurious.
It's a very dense yarn, and I expect it to stretch in length as I wear it. So, I knit it straight instead of adding waist shaping. But since this leaves me without any waist definition, I used the last half ball of yarn to knit a slender sash to tie around my middle.
Frankly, I'm not sure if it does me any favors waist-wise, but it does add a little panache!
And now for a few project details. The original pattern, as I mentioned, is the Shalom Cardigan (rav link) by Meghan McFarlane. Meghan's version was a yoked vest with a single button at the top. I added 3/4-length sleeves, buttons every 10 rows, ribbing at the hips, and that sash. I also made all kinds of tiny modifications for my gauge and size.
Love how it matches the rhyolite.