Friday, December 16, 2005

nearly a pair of jaywalkers

nearly a pair
nearly a pair
Originally uploaded by the pig wot flies.

I'm hoping these will get finished today. I feel like I've been knitting them forever, but it's only since the beginning of December. I think I need about 8 more rows before I switch to ribbing and then the knitting is done. Some tidying up and a bath and they'll be done.

Friday, December 09, 2005

second sock syndrome

I didn't think this would be a problem. I like knitting socks. The first of my toe-up jaywalkers is finally finished to my satisfaction (no pictures yet, it's a Christmas present, anyway, you know what Jaywalker looks like) and now I've started the second. The thing is, it's boring knitting the same sock again. The first time through I had lots of problems to solve on the way, getting it to fit right. Now I've solved all my problems and I know exactly what I have to do to make it the same. And it's boring! I managed to avoid this problem with my first pair of socks by knitting one toe-up and one cuff down. Perhaps I should have done that with these, but then the zigzags would point in opposite directions would would just be too unmatchy. I am pressing on and resisting the temptation to start something else. (Mostly because I'm at work and these socks are the only knitting I have with me.) I'll just have to get through it quickly so I can start solving the puzzles of something else. And soon I'll have a finished pair of socks to be happy about.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

woolly gorgeousness

This week I went for the first time to the Handweavers Studio. It's stuffed with stuff for fibre based creating - rug wool, handlooms, fleece from just about animal you can get wool from, silk, nettle yarn, weaving threads, handspun wool... I had to buy something, so I bought this.

woolly gorgeousness

It's handspun, dipdyed wool. Each skein is 100g and measures about 88m. I'm now wondering what to do with it. It feels quite rustic, but the colours are gorgeous. I could felt it, but my felting is always a bit experimental and I think this stuff's too beautiful to risk ruining. I want to knit something that will show off all the colour gradations. Maybe a sort of mini Clapotis? Or something similar with a simple stitch pattern and some structure to it. I tried knitting some last night. On 6mm needles I liked how the stitches looked, but it's quite stiff. On 8mm needles it's too loose. The answer is probably somewhere in between, 6.5mm or 7mm, whch means I need to buy some more needles. There's no hurry, I've got plenty more urgent things to knit, but I'm hoping musing over this will be a good distraction when I'm sick of knitting on tiny needles.

Sunday, December 04, 2005


Remember the slubby purply wool blend from Stepney Green post office? I made a long skinny scarf from it.

bobbly scarf

Pattern: cast on 12 (I think), knit 8 rows, switch to stocking stitch until you're nearly out of yarn, knit 8 rows.

Yarn: Mardi Gras, about 75% wool, the rest is acrylic and nylon. I think. I've lost the ball band.

Needles: 5mm bamboo

The interesting side is the reverse side of stocking stitch, so I think this scarf might need blocking quite often. It seems to lie down quite readily when I blast it with steam, so that's not too much of a chore.

This one's still drying.

hat bowl

It was going to be a hat, but it's not deep enough, so I'm calling it a bowl.

Pattern: Felted hat pattern by Arlene Williams, but not followed very closely since my wool was much thicker. I just stopped when I ran out of my main colour and cast off in the small amount of purple I found.

Yarn: Freedom wool by Twileys of Stamford in Moorland (main colour) and a small amount of Heather (border).

Needles: 5.5mm dpns (the biggest I have) and 9mm circulars.

Sorry, I forgot to take photos in its unfelted state. It was going to be a hat for my mum if it worked, but it's not deep enough. (It looks like the hats worn by Geraldine McEwan as Miss Marple). I started felting it by hand, but didn't feel like spending all afternoon playing with it, so shoved it in the washing machine with a couple of pairs of jeans and forgot about it. When it came out, it was too small to be a hat and needed some pummelling into shape. Perhaps it might have been a good hat if I'd persisted with the hand-felting. Anyway, it was an experiment and I like the swirly patterns on the inside which you wouldn't see if it was a hat.

no longer invisible

Here's that completed Jaywalker sock (the first, top down one). It might be a while before I get round to the second sock.

completed jaywalker

Pattern: Jaywalker by Grumperina

Yarn: Angel hand-dyed sock yarn, colourway 11

Needles: 2.5mm dpns (2.25mm for the ribbing, 2.75mm for the tubular cast on)

Modifications: tubular cast on, size enlarged to 92 stitches round (I added one to each straight section).

I don't think it really needed the extra 8 stitches. Switching to 2.5mm instead of 2.25mm solved my size problem. The toe-up Jaywalker I'm doing now is on 2.5mm with 84 stitches and it seems fine. I think I overcompensated.

Here's the silk top I mentioned:

silk top detail

It's a lovely colour, but far too big. I'm going to treat it as a big swatch and do lots of measuring before starting again. There's now a Glampyre pattern for Hip Knits silk, so I've bought that and while I don't think I'll follow it exactly (I'd need more silk and I'm not sure a keyhole neckline would suit me), I will use it as inspiration.

Friday, December 02, 2005

Ceci n'est pas une chaussette

toe-up jaywalker

Well, OK it is, but pretend it's not, cos it's a secret.

Anyway, I'm knitting Jaywalker again, but this time, following Natalia's example and starting at the bottom. I'm a little worried by the bagginess either side of the toe, but trying the sock on, it looks like it will stretch out once it's on and blocking will help too. I did knit a swatch this time and I think I've got the size right. Working out what to do with the heel is going to be the tricky bit. Natalia has some suggestions and I think I'm going to go for the eclectic heel. I'll let you know how it goes.