It is Yarnalong time! From sweltering (who knew?) Brighton, where, I must admit knitting has been limited as I am trying not to cast on any new projects and all my other projects are either not for public consumption yet or too bloody hot to sit under/near in this heat.
Knitting wise, I have completed my Byatt shawl, with the kind help of my work knitting friend and a little bit of a shawl-to-shawl transplant, after I lost my game of Yarn Chicken with three and half rows/6 increases to go. Luckily, J was knitting a shawl in a very similar grey and let me steal a bit from the other end of the ball to finish the MC/CC slip-stitch section off successfully. It is blocking at the moment and then I hope to briefly take photos before I have to fling it off me again.
I have started one WiP though, for all my bluster above, which is a Silene Shawl in some seriously ancient Stash Yarn (this being from the Des Res in West Kensington era of the Stash Archaeology so, ooooh, late 2000s. ) in the hopes that I will have a completed shawl in time for my brother’s wedding at the end of July. It’s um, possible but we shall see. It’s always good to have a goal, right?
Bookwise, I’ve been rereading the Anne of Green Gables series and I am making a concentrated effort to finish Ron Chernow’s Hamilton biography. It’s not that it’s not really interesting; it’s just very dense and I have reached the Reynolds’ Pamphlet part, which if you are into Hamilton, is where I spend a lot of time clutching at my face and yelping “Yooooou fooooool, Alexander!’
Posts, much like buses again! It is Once Upon a Sock time again and you can find everyone else (and submit yourself!) at the Once Upon a Sock linkup, which is hosted once again by Paula at Spin a Yarn.
So here we are – still knitting away on my helical beeeees (Incidentally, fellow OUaSer, Kat has a brand new helical sock pattern available, if you want to take a spiralling trip!) although they are not as far as I had hoped to be, partially due to my needles being yanked out of them at Faro airport on my way home from my holiday (I was not best pleased, especially as Gatwick had been fine with me flying out with them) and thrown away. I managed to fix them on stitch holders when I got home and then had to replace my needles as I can only assume all my 2.25mm needles have gone into hiding as a result.
But, I have started the heel, as you can see there because I wanted to make sure I knit the foot long enough on the first one. Very exciting! Because I am using the active yarn, I am knitting the heel from the other end of the ball, so they are a little tricky to take out and about at the moment but I plan to concentrate on them as my at-home project until the heel is done and then I’ll know what measurements I need for no. 2 and they can come back out as my out and about project.
Now to go visit my fellow OUaSers!
It’s June. I am in the middle of testing for a server migration but I have run out of brain before I have run out of work day, which is not ideal when you are trying to troubleshoot script errors and file permissions.
But it is also Yarnalong time so that’s a nice break.
I am almost finished the repeats of Chart B in my Byatt shawl, which is exciting. I still have some of the MC left over so I am debating doing another chart repeat before going into the final chart which is all CC. I have another two repeats within the chart to go before I make that decision so we shall see. It is already pretty big and I am looking forward to the lace chart.
It’s been a very soothing knit, actually as it’s mainly garter stitch with increases and the occasional slip stitches and then two rows where you have to engage brain for a bit.
While I was on holiday in sunny Spain and could do nowt but reading, knit and migrate between swimming pool/buffet/balcony (it’s a hard life but someone has to live it…), I managed to read three new books:
- The Husband Hunters: Social Climbing in London and New York which was a very interesting look at the influx of American Heiresses into the Upper Classes in the UK and Europe in the late 19th/early 20th century. Includes Winston Churchill’s mother, Jennie Jerome.
- Take Six Girls: The Lives of the Mitford Sisters – a biography of the Mitford sisters, who are, as the author says, a social experiment that can never be repeated.
- Meet The FrugalWoods – A blog spin off book from the FrugalWoods. I enjoy the blog so I did enjoy the book.
I have also, in what seems to be becoming a additional section to these posts, made another cleaning product recipe from Fresh Clean Home, which was the liquid toilet cleaner. I am pleased with it as well – it uses xantham gum (which I own because I should avoid wheat for ibs reasons but like baking) to help make it cling to the sides but does mean that you start off with a very unprepossessing lumpy horror that then miraculously resolves with the application of a handblender!
So far I am very happy with all the recipes I have tried from that book, so would definitely recommend it if you are interested in making your own cleaning products.
So last summer, I went to Stockholm with friends and had a wonderful time. And one evening, while wandering the streets of the Old Town after dinner out, we stumbled across a Yarn shop. So of course, we immediately went back the following day and ogled their lovely yarn and I came home with two skeins of Stockholm Woolery Merino in yellow and black for some bee inspired socks. Several cast on attempts happened but never with any particular success – wasn’t happy with the stripes, wasn’t happy with the colour change and so on.
Fast forward to now and I have finally started my bee themed socks with the spur of the Year of Techniques book. They are helical stripes (which I have totally fallen for as a technique) with an afterthought heel. They’re meant to be my holiday project when I go away next week but I’m on holiday now, even if I haven’t left Brighton yet. 😉
I’ve put in the first afterthought waste yarn already, so hopefully I’ve placed it right so once I’ve done the length of the foot minus the toes x2, it will all fall into place.
Of course, if I have new socks on the needles, that must mean I have finished the last pair? One would hope so and in this case it is true! My 80s-tastic rainbow swirled Riverkats are off the needles and blocked! Whoop, whoop!
I’m really pleased with these – it might be a little too warm to wear them right now but they are made with yarn I bought while in Paris on our first wedding anniversary trip last year and are off the needles just before we go on our second wedding anniversary trip. Aside from the zig/zag issue on the first sock, the second sock went much quicker and I would definitely knit them again.
We’re going to a resort on the coast of Spain this time, so probably won’t find any yarn shops this trip but at least I’ll have one pair of socks to knit while I am there with my helical bees.
I’m also taking yarn to knit a Byatt shawl – one skein of Stranded Dyework’s Oasis I’m Spook (bought at a showcase at my local yarn store last LYS day) and one skein of Truly Hooked’s Sparkle Sock in Jade (Bought at Yarndale last year). I’ll use the Stranded Dyeworks as the Main Colour and the Sparkle for the Contrast. Quite looking forward to starting it.
Behold! One completed sock and one almost completed sock! My Once Upon a Sock offering this month.
I am just at the end of the gusset decreases on sock number 2 and the zigs are zigging and the zags are zagging so I am optimistic about finishing them fairly soon (I have a long train journey and some at-home holiday time in the next couple days) which means that I can start digging out the yarn and needles for my actual holiday knits!
My plan is to take two new-to-me techniques from the Year of Techniques book and turn some previous holiday yarn purchases into some helical socks with after-thought heels and contrast cuff/heel/toes. I’m hoping to have a little play with the technique before I cast on the full sock as I want to make sure the colours work together as helical stripes.
I am also going to take some sock yarn along that will be turned into my Good Intentions Quarter 3 project, which is a Byatt Shawl.
So hopefully, by the time OUAS rolls round again, I will have several sock related things to show you!
The way we’re doing Once Upon a Sock is changing slightly due to numbers, so you can find us all (and join in yourself!) at the link up hosted by Paula @ Spin A Yarn.