Good meeting, thanks!

One of the small upsides of the current situation for me is that now so many meetings are online I can knit during them, so my work-rate has shot up. The sweater I started recently is now ginormous (honestly, this is supposed to be a for a 12 year old, but it would fit me. I can only assume that the yarn the pattern was created for shrinks by about 30%).

Finished the back and about to start the front. One unconsidered side-effect of using a variegated yarn is that of course when your stitch-count changes – as it does when you shape for the sleeve-holes – then the yarn puddles very slightly differently. So there’s a rather nice optical illusion here that the diamonds are smaller.

Also have a pair of socks on the go in some Scheepjes yarn I bought a-a-a-a-ges ago.

I’ve never knitted with Scheepjes before, and it’s lovely. Super-soft and cosy, and the way this one (Our Tribe Happy in Red) colour-changes is very pretty. I might feel less positive when it comes to trying to get my feet to match, but I’ll cross that one when I come to it. In the meantime there are some rather lovely other colours that it comes in…

We’re not going to talk about the shawl.

Strange times

I am getting rather more knitting than usual done just now, mainly because I am At Home. Of course the reason I am At Home is the same as everyone’s else’s reason for being At Home, ie a global pandemic. It feels quite weird for us to be carrying on relatively as normal – barring going out or doing anything – while some people are having the most stressful and dangerous time tangling with CV19, and I am very conscious of being in an extremely fortunate position. I’m employed and can still work, I’m a student and can still study, my family are all healthy and I am able to homeschool because they are primary-age and even though I don’t know a fronted adverbial from a hole in the road, I can handle most of the rest of the curriculum.

So – as part of being responsibly #stayathome, I am notching up a reasonable number of wins on my needles. Finished a chunky sweater last week, also a pair of socks

Plain vanilla socks in WYS Kingfisher sockyarn

then did a stash dive to see if there was anything I had enough of for a child-sized sweater. Lo and Behold there was a pack of Debbie Bliss cotton DK I’d completely forgotten about, in their ‘print’ series.

Very pleasing blues, and a nice pattern from Rowan that has enough to keep me interested but not so much I lose track.

The same cannot be said for the other WIP, which is the wrap I picked up a couple of months back (or it could be a couple of weeks, time is weird right now). I’ve never managed to learn the border pattern on this, so I have to painfully follow the chart for every border repeat.

I’ve done a dozen repeats so am hopeful that it will bed in at some point, but the fact that I’m not loving it means it’s very easy to be distracted by other things. <checks the stash for more sockyarn>

Sooooooooocks!!

It’s been Too Long since I was able to knit any socks – largely because of the afore-complained-about yarn diet. But also because it felt as though the number of pairs of socks I had was about the right number – or possibly even too many – for one person. But I’m now going to take a stand and say There Is No Such Thing As Too Many Socks.

I’m completely and joyously selfish when it comes to socks – they’re the only thing I knit that I absolutely love wearing and I have done a splurge on not one, not two, but four balls of sockyarn. I don’t even have enough needles to knit them all at once…

I have some Rico Superba Poems in lovely foresty greens and shadows;

(this is already on the needles…

I have some West Yorkshire Spinners in chirpy turquoises and orange, which I’m hoping will knit into one of those clever Fair-Isle-y patterns,

and I have two balls of Scheepjes Our Tribe – one in passionate reds

and another in candyfloss bubblegummy pink.

This is very happy to me.

Because: Sean Bean

Much as I love the Crazed Scandinavian Cowl and it’s cheerful no-two-rows-the-same insanity (perhaps long Swedish nights need something bonkers to get you through them), there does come a time when I want something simple. Something I can knit while also mocking a Fast & Furious film. Or puzzling over exactly why, when Sean Bean’s Sharpe shows up at an enemy fort, they immediately accept him at face value and give him top-level access to all their plans.

SO – socks it is. I actually thought I didn’t have any sockyarn but then did a stashdive and found one skein. This is my fourth of the Lang Magic Degrade skeins – I absolutely love colour change yarns.

I’ve got two skeins in the browny-grey mixture that I plan to turn into a shawl, and I can quite see myself knitting the full deck (my sock drawer is ridiculous, particularly as I’ve now learned to darn and so old socks never die…). The turquoise shading into the dark blue shading into the green is just lovely.

The colours are exactly the way I would do them if I was making colour-change yarn and it’s always very satisfying to have a pattern reveal itself without you actually having to think about anything.

Moody socks

And the added bonus of getting to watch Sean Bean at the same time. ūüôā

A pause

There has been a long silence on the blog due to me having (slightly unexpectedly) decided to do a Masters in Librarianship and Information Science. Which took up all the time I formerly thought of as ‘spare’ and also some that really wasn’t spare at all. There was no room for knitting, reading, woodworking or any of the other things I usually do when I’m not working, avoiding housework or poking facebook.

However, the first semester is now drawing to a close and with only two assignments left there is room to breathe. And knit. So first of all, a confession. The big black knotty nightmare? Is no more. All my grand talk about lifelines turned out to be so much bunkum when I noticed a mistake, decided I could live with it, and so moved my lifeline past it. Then I decided that I couldn’t live with it after all, and – get this – decided to try and frog back past¬†it. Despite knowing all the stuff I said about the impossibility of frogging knitted lace. Literally, I looked at this fragile web of holes and thought “it’ll be fine”.

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The Mistake

Reader, it was not fine. So now the poor thing is half-frogged and sitting in a cupboard where it can’t remind me of my own stupidity. I loved the pattern, and I loved the way it was turning out, but I have to go a-a-a-a-l-l the way back to the very beginning and that’s not something I’m prepared to do just yet. I wouldn’t hold your breath.

In the meantime there are socks in Lang Jawoll Degrade, which looks so gorgeous in the ball it’s almost a shame to knit it up:

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a kind-of-Hapisk-but-not-really because I’m just striping Debbie Bliss grey 4 ply with leftover sockyarn. Projects for leftover sockyarn are great for someone who knits socks because there are always little balls at the end (if you’re a match-obsessive the way I am). And this is going to be either a blanket or a shawl.¬†Haven’t decided yet, but I like the way the colours are coming.

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Scandinavian cowl, coming along ok:

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And some FOs because there were children with cold hands and heads so there needed to be hats and mittens…

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Finished Objects. Lots and lots of finished objects.

One reason there was a dearth of knitting projects in the run-up to Christmas was that I was trying to finish some other stuff. There were more needle-books to make:

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minion hats to finish for the childrens’ stockings:

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a quilt top to finish (this has been on the go for literally years. Now just needs batting, backing and quilting. Ok, there’s quite a lot of work there. Calling it ‘finished’ is a stretch.)

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and a chair to finish putting together. (There’s going to be a matching one when I get around to turning the fourth leg, another stretcher, making another seven spindles…)

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They were all done by Christmas and since then it’s been socks all the way, pretty much.¬†Regia Jet Set for The Husband (I’m always grateful he’s got small feet):

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Macha socks from Violet Green¬†for me (I got the yarn for Christmas and was hoping there’d be a Nemain colourway to go with it but no. Any other fans of Guy Gavriel Kay’s Fionavar Tapestry books will know where I’m coming from.)

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And a pleasing self-patterning Regia 4-ply – also going to be for me.

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On the needles right now – some mittens for a friend. Of which more later.

The ‘Good Wife’ haul

A combination of a new laptop and a new¬†Netflix subscription has meant that I am somewhat belatedly viewing Good Stuff That Was On TV Ages Ago. We don’t have tv so I never see stuff when it’s actually being broadcast and take occasional recommendations from friends about what’s awesome. Netflix thus gave me four whopping seasons of The Good Wife that I charged through while knitting. So the collection below is What Got Made during Good Wife

Starshine sweater for The Bear

This one’s been blogged before when I made a hugely embarrassing mistake and knitted the yoke pattern upside down, but here’s the finished article:SONY DSCIt’s knitted in Rowan Pure Wool DK. As usual with the GarnStudio patterns,¬†their measurements are¬†small – this is the 7-8 years size, fitting a 5.5 year old perfectly. ¬†I can only assume Nordic children are smaller!

Socks

Three pairs, because it’s super easy to knit plain socks in front of exciting legal happenings without thinking about it. One for me, one for Husband and one for Oldest Boy. First time I’ve knitted a pair for a child, and goodness me it’s quick! They’re an amalgam of yarn left over from two of my pairs of socks – the same sort of yarn in two colourways.

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I’m now done with Good Wife (no ¬†more seasons on Netflix) and am on to House. I’ll see you in seven seasons.

Falling out of love

It started so well. The yarn was fluffy (but not too fluffy) and full of promise. The colours – delightful greens all of them – shaded beautifully one into the other. My first sock striped its way to fruition and was cosy, comfortable and everything it had whispered it would be.SONY DSC

How is that promise betrayed!

Approaching the heel for sock number two I became uncomfortably aware that the stripes in this section of the ball were Not The Same Depth as the stripes in the first section of the ball. Just a couple of rows out on each colour but enough to make about a centimetre and a half’s difference before I’d even got to the heel.SONY DSC

And then, oh then there was badness. The bright-green stripe I was on, instead of shading through olive into deep teal, simply stopped. A mishmashed join and then abruptly straight into the dark teal.SONY DSC
There is a hard line across my sock where no hard line should be. These socks will never match. Can you hear the sound of my heart breaking?

And lo! out of the rain came Socks…

This is what happens when it yaks it down with rain all weekend and I have sockyarn.SONY DSCViolet Green‘s excellent Solemate yarn in Floribundissima. Which is all good! except that now I need more sockyarn. Luckily there’s a yarn store just down the road that sold me this little ball of luciousness:SONY DSCI also have this in the stashSONY DSCand I suspect that I may lose the mental battle to only cast on one pair. I have two pairs of sockneedles and I like having several things on the go. Apart from the guilt.SONY DSCAfter all, when it’s started you get to see how pretty it’s going to be 12,000 stitches later…

Il pleut

It’s raining, and the skies are black, and the weather forecast says it’s literally never going to stop, so what else is there to do on a day like this but knit a sock?SONY DSCThe pattern is my usual one – toe-up on two circular needles with a ribbed cuff, and I think these are for me. I’ve saved a fortune (she lied to herself) by filling my sock drawer with handknitted socks and the yarn-leftovers are SO useful for adding to the never-ending linen-stitch scarf that is currently sitting at the bottom of the sockyarn stash.

The yarn is from Violet Green and it’s their Solemate yarn, in Floribundissima. Let it rain, who cares!

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