Saturday, 18 September 2010

Antiquing we shall go

Just got back from a long day trip down to the gi-normous antiques fair at Shepton Mallet.  It was a glorious sunny day, the drive was a little over two hours, and we had a really good time.  This fair is so big that it took us about five hours to go around and we weren't even looking at every stall in detail.  I love antique shows, it's like a giant museum where you can touch things and even take them home.  I love looking through old linens, opening the drawers on furniture, trying to figure out what old gadgets do, and admiring the booths dressed up in shabby chic, or as Turkish harems, or looking like vintage French kitchens.

So what did I get?  Not that much really, but I enjoyed looking.

I picked up a knitted lace doily for only £3.  It needs blocking, and there is a bit of a boo-boo that needs latching up (where I am pointing) but somebody put a lot of work into this.  It feels like possibly a linen thread.

I bought somebody's tatted UFO, still attached to the shuttle, and with a ring partly made, for £2.50.  I will sew this trim around a handkerchief.  It makes me feel guilty that I have a hankerchief edging half tatted that I started about 8 years ago and still haven't finished.  I think this edging is already long enough for a hankie, but if it isn't, the pattern is pretty simple and I can tat some more length.

I found this super-cute embroidered linen tablecloth.  It is the Willow Pattern and it looks like it is done neatly by hand.  It's in really good condition, no stains or holes.

It's been a busy week and I was out two nights so haven't got a lot done otherwise.  I've turned the heels on my Hand-dyed sock blank socks.  I hate this yarn now and I'm only finishing them because I promised to send the tutor a picture of what the socks looked like.  After unravelling the sock blank, straightening the yarn and winding it into a ball, I had to unwind the ball AGAIN because one strand of yarn is continuously twisted around the other strand and the two strands just kept getting into hideous tangles as the twist built up.  Machine knitters strand two or more strands in that way to ensure an even knit, I do it myself when I machine knit, but I think for a sock blank they shouldn't have done it that way and should have just knit the two strands in parallel. So I've had to rewind into two separate balls now, which I should have done right from the get-go when I unravelled the sock blank.  In future I am sticking to nice pre-skeined sock yarn.

I finished my first Sanquhar glove and have made a start on the second.

I knit three little hats for the Innocent Big Knit charity campaign, and posted them off. The Christmas pudding and the flower are patterns I downloaded from their website.

And I finished my Malabrigo Silky Merino neckwarmer.  This yarn, which was lusciously fluffy and cosy, with a silken sheen as I was knitting with it, has rather disappointed me.  I gave the neckwarmer an extremely gentle handwash in liquid woollen soap, and laid it out flat to dry.  The finished result has lost most of its cosy fuzzy softness and gone quite flat and drapey.  Which is kind of what you would expect from a high silk content but not what I thought this yarn was going to do, based on how it was knitting up.  So instead of having a fleecy cuddly wrap around my neck, I have more of a drapey flat scarf.  So I am still getting used to that. I didn't knit a swatch because the neckwarmer didn't have to fit as such. It looks nice though and is very soft.

I received two knitting magazines this week, both of which had several things in which I liked so that was a rather pleasant treat after the disappointment that was Rowan 48.  Designer Knitting Fall 2010 (Vogue Knitting in America) has some fabulous things in it, including a round lacy jacket that looks exactly like my Pi Shawl but with sleeves.  I am now contemplating whether I am brave enough to create Afterthought Armholes in my Pi Shawl.  I will have to do some trying on in front of the mirror to see if it is big enough.  I find I am not wearing the shawl as it is too delicate to wear under my knapsack outdoors, and too warm to wear doubled up indoors.  But if I could turn it into a vest or a cardi, then I could just wear it in the office as a single layer.  We'll see.  The other magazine I received was the Fall/Winter Debbie Bliss knitting magazine, which also has some nice things in it. I am particularly taken with a car coat in Luxury Tweed Chunky which is a gorgeous denim blue colour. My subscription to that magazine is up for renewal, and I wasn't sure I was going to bother, but now I am tempted again.

It's turned surprisingly chilly here now, real Autumn weather even though it is only mid-September.  Today in the sunshine it was only about 15 degrees C.  I think we might even get a frost soon.  So I am feeling like it is time to get the knits out to wear, and also to start knitting warm cosy things.  I seem to have had severe Startitis this summer on knitting projects, but Gigi on the Knitmore Girls podcast says that startitis is a good thing as it makes you embark on all sorts of new ventures so that you always have a project on hand that suits your mood or your needs. I feel a bit frustrated though as I am not a very fast knitter and I want them all finished NOW so that I can wear them.  :)  Looking forward to my local knitting group tomorrow afternoon at the pub, when I will get some quality knitting time in.


swooze said...

Love all your treasures! Your knitted pieces are wonderful.

Daisy said...

What do you mean you haven't got a lot done? That looks like a lot to me! ;-) And much much more than I've got done recently! Eeek.

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