Necessary Neutral by Sally Melville
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Necessary Neutral

Knitting
February 2018
Fingering (14 wpi) ?
12 stitches and 24 rows = 2 inches
in knit 2 rows, purl 2 rows
US 5 - 3.75 mm
S (L)
This pattern is available for $6.50 USD buy it now

Not only was this a fun knit (because I was always doing something), but it’s completion felt like an act of virtue! Here’s why… .

Whether or not we knit socks, we buy fingering yarns. And then, miraculously, we have a collection—of partial skeins or skeins for which we have forgotten the intended purpose. After many months of pondering the beautiful dilemma that was reflected in my own collection’s disuse, I designed and knit a shawl.

But while the virtue of using leftovers needs no explanation, you do not need to only use leftovers. Immediately after finishing my shawl, I purchased 6 new yarns—including some precious Prism yarns—to begin another!

Why necessary neutral? Because I have found (in my Craftsy class and book on using up leftovers) that using odds and sods needs an anchoring colour scheme—a dark neutral. Once that’s in place, your work is guaranteed to succeed: see the photo of my friend’s chosen yarns, dark blues and grays with lighter colours: it will be stunning.

Another word about using multiple yarns: there is a design principle once is a mistake, twice is a problem, three times or more is a design. Until you see all your combinations repeated, you will not have confidence that your choices are working. Best advice is to hang in there!

There are 2 sizes offered: 41 x 45” (49 x 56”), using 250 (375) grams fingering weight yarns, divided evenly between darks and lights. Note that I cannot tell you how many yards you need: your collection may have partial balls, so the weight of what you need is the important determinant.