Thursday, February 15, 2007

More knitting

I'm staying at Mum & Dad's for a few days over half term. I came down on the train again. I've been winding A up, telling him it's my attempt at reducing my carbon footprint, but if I'm going to be completely honest, dear reader, it's that I can't be bothered to concentrate on driving when I could be knitting.

That's really sad, isn't it?

On a brighter note, I finished my second sock:

I'm really pleased with them. I suppose I learnt to knit when I was 6 or 7, I remember endlessly knitting irregular scarves for my teddies in badly tensioned garter stitch, but I never progressed beyond stocking stitch squares for charity blankets. Then at some point in my early 20s, I got the urge to follow a pattern and I knitted a larger toy killer whale (no, I don't know why, either) but, as is my trademark, I never finished sewing the thing together. I've dabbled a bit since we moved to this house, mucking about with triangles to make mathematical patterns and last year I knitted a garter stitch scarf for myself, but I only really picked my needles up to became what I call a "real" knitter last October, when I wanted to knit something for Anna. Due to my limited repertoire (i.e. knit, purl, stuff the increase/decrease lark) I knitted a blanket with a moss stitch border, then tried four needles and knitted a hat for my Dad (same pattern as most of the Bobble Family hats) . Several hats later (including a gorgeously cute one for Anna), I decided to widen my range and on New Year's Eve, I started my first sock, using Opal self-striping sock yarn. Six and a half weeks later and ta-da! They are finished!

I even managed to get the pattern to match!

These socks have been the cause of much amusement at work. When it slipped out that I was knitting socks, there were hoots of derision, including my personal favourite: "Are you practising for when you retire?" The Head was just baffled, and K and I found that really funny (although I think K was annoyed on my behalf re: the retirement quote....). Several days later when discussing what club I could run, the suggestions I came up with were batted back by the Head. Knowing that she wanted me to run one, I suggested a knitting club, with my tongue very firmly in my cheek. Imagine my surprise when she jumped at it! I told her I was only prepared to run it for 10 children. She asked, if she helped out would I do it for 20? Ye-es I said, thinking quickly that it had better turn into a Handicrafts club, so I could work on the knitting with small groups at a time. Imagine my joy at the first one, when 29 children turned up! The second session, I tried the knitting with half a dozen.

What the heck was I thinking? I need to be committed! But it is fun, the children are making pom-pom monsters at the moment and we'll try some Binca bookmarks, too, I think.

And while I'm showing photos of my finished projects, here is the scarf I knitted my Mum for Christmas (she doesn't do hats!) . It came from a kit and was knitted on 12.5 mm needles, which felt like knitting with broom handles! The yarn was unusual too, thicker and thinner in different places. Knitted up very quickly, though.

I currently have 4 projects on the go: a couple of baby items (more on those when they are finished), a tank top in alpaca and a cotton garter stitch tote bag which was started in November but has been sidelined for more interesting projects.


Chrissy said...

Your socks look really nice. I can't wait to try Opal, but I've yet to find any. I can't beleive you got them to match. My self striping yarns never do. PS. Thanks for visiting my blog. You should give Jaywalkers a try, they're really fun.

Lou said...

I'm thrilled tha Anna inspired you to pick up your needles! You must be very good at it! As any mum will tell you, finding hats that fit your baby is a nightmare! They end up over the eyes so poor Anna can't see anything! My little girl doesn't cry very often these days but the hat over the eyes is enough to make her scream (Why has Mummy turned all the lights off.... it isn't bed time yet!)However, your very cute hat (with accompanying bobble) is the only hat that fits her snugly, hence keeping her warm as well as being able to see. Thank you very much Nic!

Maverick said...

Iam a little worried about the tank top, one, we havent got an alpaca. And two I dont think tank tops suit alpacas!