Ruffle ruffle ruffle

Well, we’re done! It took the same amount of yarn to do the inch-and-a-half ruffle as it did half the border. But I think it looks pretty good. This is for some friends who are having a baby in a couple of months. It’s probably about time I started thinking about one for my own, but the cobbler’s children do famously go barefoot…

The whole shebang
The whole shebang

I’m more pleased with it than I thought I would be… as much as anything else it’s a relief to have it off the needles! A round of stitches that takes an hour and a half to knit can become tedious…

Centre, border and edging
Centre, border and edging

The border pattern is one from Sharon Miller’s Heirloom Knitting – a real treasure trove.

Field of flowers

Low boredom threshold

Because I have the above and am therefore incapable of knitting one thing at a time, I thought I’d post some pics of what else is on the needles…

Sock using Opal Magic Rouge
Sock using Opal Magic Rouge

These socks use the toe-up on two circular needles patterns that I swear by. It creates a nice neat toe, a hole-free heel, and then you can make the leg section as short or as long as you like until you run out of yarn…  The Opal Magic yarn is a gem of a self-patterning yarn, too, though the second sock tends to be something of a headache as you try to match the pattern exactly.  I use Silver’s pattern  – some of the clearest knitting instructions I’ve ever read!

This is/will be the moss stitch bathrobe from Debbie Bliss’s Essential Baby. It’s one of the most boring things I’ve every knitted, but am more than halfway there now. It’s for the bump currently kicking away below my ribs, though I’m making the 18 month old size so I have some time to finish it…

Bathrobe
Bathrobe

Too many stitches

How many stitches is too many? I’ll tell you. When you’ve knitted the centre of a hap shawl with a sensible number, and then you pick up for the border, and increase two stitches per side every alternate row (and it’s a big border) and then you decide that you’ll edge it with a ruffle, so you double your number of stitches by increasing into each stitch, and then double them again by yarn-overing before each stitch… That’s too many stitches. I have a grand total of 2,800 stitches per round, here.  Thank goodness it’s not going to be a very deep ruffle.

Field of flowers shawl - border and edging
Field of flowers shawl - border and edging

Deep breath

Ravelry gave me a taste… and now I want more.  There’s something immensely satisfying about sharing your work and ideas with a wider world, so this is the beginning of my knitting blog.

The deep breath is not only for the dive into the blogosphere but the fact that I’ve just bought about 4.5km of Shetland Supreme laceweight 1ply from Jamieson & Smith for all the lace-knitting I plan to do over the next year.  This is partly due to being inspired by Sharon Miller’s Heirloom Knitting and Jane Sowerby’s Victorian Lace Today, but I’ve also just bought Knitted Lace of Estonia which has some absolutely stunning projects in it – completely different from the English and Scottish patterns in the other two books. Lots of ‘nupps’ (which in aran knitting would be called bobbles) that really add another dimension to the work.

I’m also using the queuing up of new projects as an excuse not to think about the lace shawl I’ve got on the needles at the moment, which isn’t turning out quite the way I’d wanted.  It started as an excuse to use up some Patons Fairytale 2ply left over from a previous project, and an opportunity to practice hap shawl construction.

Field of flowers shawl
Field of flowers shawl

But having not done this before I didn’t insert a ‘break pattern’ row between the centre and the border. So it looks sort of funny to me where it goes straight into the border at top and bottom but has a noticeable ‘edge’ down the sides. Still, you knit and learn. The other grinch is that the supplementary yarn I bought – though supposedly the same – is clearly some microns thicker and to my eye it looks really obvious… However, the baby is unlikely to mind! And I can put lessons to good use with my lovely new Shetland yarn.