Saturday, 19 May 2012


I realised on Tuesday that I had completely forgotten to blog last weekend, and indeed I've been so busy the last few weeks that it all seems a bit of a blur when I try to think what I've been doing.  I must have been doing something.

 I have started to job hunt again, and I've been working on my CV so I suppose that's one thing.  I did plumb in the new dishwasher, only to have the bathroom extraction fan promptly die. I'm beginning to think our appliances are out to get us.  The electrician came mid-week to inspect it and is coming back today to install the replacement.

Last weekend we took DS to Cambridge to a university sciences open day, which was quite interesting and included a free lunch.  On the way there, as part of my move to knit with bigger yarn and needles, I cast on for the True North mittens using Berroco Blackstone Tweed in three colours. I knit about three inches that day and realised that it was going to be far too big.  I frogged it, changed down a needle size and cast on again.

After knitting about 2.5 inches, I realised that my jog was horribly visible at the beginning/end of rounds.  I've knit fair isle mittens twice before, but they were with naturalistic patterns and not horizontal bands.  My Latvian Braid has a bad join but I think I can fix that when I sew in the ends, so I frogged back down the braid and tried again, this time using the 'slip the first stitch of the second row of a colour' technique for combating a visible jog. That worked ok, not brilliantly, for the bands of multiple stitches but still didn't work for the single row colour bands.  I frogged back AGAIN and this time tried the Meg Swanson technique of lifting up the stitch in the row below, and knitting it together with the stitch above.  The result is in the picture, it's better but still not great. So basically I've spent the past week knitting, frogging and reknitting three inches of mitten cuff.  If you have any suggestions for hiding the jog when knitting fair isle in the round, please please let me know.

Commuter knitting has been the Multnomah Shawl, where I have now reached the final repeat of the Feather & Fan border and have so many stitches that each row seems to be taking longer to knit than an entire jumper. This is the point in knitting a shawl where I question if I ever want to knit a shawl again that isn't sideways knit. I just have to keep persevering and eventually I will get to the end.

I did some sewing last Sunday, making a drawstring laundry bag to fit in my suitcase when travelling, and another drawstring project bag which I'm using as a drawer tidy to hide lots of little bits of junk.I used two contrasting quilt fabrics with a vintage feel to them.

I also trimmed the edges on yet another quilt that I quilted on the frame last summer, and started machining on the binding to one side.

I've spent a lot of time the past week having a love affair with a larger house that I discovered for sale on a nearby street.  We've grown out of our current house, and this other house is huge by comparison, and we went round to view it one evening.  Unfortunately it needs a lot of work, and in order to buy it we would have to sell our current home which could take months.  It has been very hard to let go of the vision of a sewing studio, knitting studio, and modelling room for DS/DH,  but reluctantly I am trying to give up the dream.  I did check with my father to see if he would temporarily lend us some money, and got a stern reply back about the economy and how at my age I should be saving for retirement - which made me feel like Methuselah.  Isn't it remarkable how your parents can always make you feel like a guilty eight-year-old no matter how old you get?

This week I bagged a seat on a corporate jolly bus tour around the London 2012 Olympic Park, which was very interesting but also rather alarming as it looks more like a construction site than something that will welcome the world in ten weeks.  Our tour guide assured us it will be ready, but I couldn't help wondering whether 10 weeks was enough time for the recently laid turfing and all the sapling trees sticking out of plastic tubes to become established.  I also tried a new yoga class, which wasn't suitable for my feeble plumpness, and went on a winetasting tour at Vinopolis which luckily was only half price since I don't know anything about wine. It was fun but also a bit disappointing as I was expecting a museum all about wine and how it's made etc., and it is really just four enormous rooms with winetasting bars in each.

I did bag another couple of bargain knitting books from the discount bookstore next to Waterloo station. They were both only £4.99 each, which is pretty good.  Socks a la Carte is the book that got a lot of reviews with the pages split into three sections so you can flip back and forth to make your own combination sock pattern.  Knit2Together by Tracey Ullman and Mel Clark has some really cute patterns in it and some cardigans that I really like, and lots of chatty stories from both of the authors. Another room we were going to have in 'our new house' was a library where I could have all my knitting books ready to hand.  Sigh...

Meanwhile the weather continues to be completely erratic, and I am still wearing my woolly hat and fingerless gloves some mornings due to the cold wind.  At least I am getting lots of wear out of my knits this year.  Oh, and I sold another bag from my Folksy shop!  Not for very much, but the buyer was quite pleased and now I've sold three items.

1 comment:

Daisy said...

Bet you aren't wearing the hat and gloves now!!

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