Thursday, 19 September 2019

September Socks

Designed as an "in-between" event, I am putting on another weekend for circular sock machine knitters at local hotel. 44 booked, 6 cancelled, so a bit quieter event than in March, which had demonstrations, workshops and competitions. By keeping expenses down to just ink and paper, I have done a little better than breakeven, and of course it all goes to the Framework Knitters Museum. I don't think the fun will be diluted though! Usual aches and pains getting things down from the attic today and wondering where I put certain items after last time. 8 bags with handles, one crate, the rolling cart for the Cymbal, and my overnight case. Amazing how it all goes in a Toyota Aygo with room to spare, when some week's I don't think I can get the weekly shopping in. New this time - a challenge on how to do my teacosies with flatweb on a CSM, and we'll be looking at selvages from Kathy's book. As a diversion, have downloaded a pattern for Danish mitten cuffs and had fun with translating it. In doing so I found a better way of crossing two elongated stitches, except they are now right over left instead of left over right. Pattern name is Kryds & bolle which a Google translate says is cross and bowl, BUT a plain Google search says is Noughts & Crosses or Tic tac toe. The first one makes best sense!

Thursday, 5 September 2019

Cosying "up"

Much nicer! Nine pleats each side, and some held stitches for the top ruffle. Just need a few more stitches in that ruffle, and proper lace holes every 5 rows for the tie, then happy for it to go to Textile Emporium. Final weight 85 grams, so it is tempting to make one from a single yarn, thus creating another 15 grams of scrap, which is kinda defeating the object!

Wednesday, 21 August 2019

All cosy?

The mountain of left over sock yarn is still growing. Had the idea of a frilled teacosy - each horizontal hem takes 30 rows, but the row counter only progresses 10 rows. Dual purpose of eating up the yarn and triple insulation for the pot. An extra hem at the top is a bit bulky after gathering - perhaps a rib next time. Now, how about a vertically pleated one? What happens to the holes for gathering? Solution many be to put about two inches worth of stitches on hold at one side while doing the 20 rows for the hem, and knit them back with the final joining row. Either rely on the holes formed at beginning of pleats for threading through, although rather far apart,or make a lace hole every 5 rows.

Thursday, 15 August 2019

Hang in there, Vera!

My mother-in-law was 100 years old at the weekend. 40 family members friends and neighbours descended on a beautiful farmhouse overlooking Skirrid near Abergavenny for a really lovely occasion. What to make for a centenarian? A simple coathanger with scribble yarn over a lavender liner, completed with a bag of lavender from my garden. She actually said "ooh!" when she opened it. Bless.

Tuesday, 23 July 2019

When in doubt, cover it with knitting

At last, I have bought a Smartphone. Persuaded to buy a "case" for it which in reality turned out to be just a back cover. So to prevent the screen from being scratched in my handbag (you won't see me walking round with the phone held out in front of me like all the 20-somethings round here), I set to and knitted a cover. It's two diamonds, folded points in envelope fashion with one flap up, one reversed so they sort of slot in to each other. I am finding that the Smartphone can do some clever things - I can put appointments straight on to my Google calendar, and read my Kindle on it. Best of all, I have got my Ringtone on it - the Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy. And so far have apparently spent only 16p on it!

Tuesday, 2 July 2019

More about the trip to the Old Bailey

Because of my work with the Framework Knitters Museum, and the fundraising I have done for them, I was suggested as a candidate for an outing. The past Master of the Worshipful Company of Framework Knitters last year, Liz Green, became elected as the liveryman Sheriff of the City of London. There is another Sheriff, an alderman, who inevitably becomes the next Mayor of London. They serve for one year and have to live in the Old Bailey so one is always on hand to support Her Majesty's Judges at all times. They take it in turns to invite "interesting" people to lunch with the judges. Liz decided this week would be themed craft and heritage building skills, and her link with our Chair of Trustees resulted in my invite. Her dad was Barrie Byford - you may have heard of Byford's Socks. It started off with Champagne in Liz's office for the seven visitors. The other six invitees were from the Worshipful Companies of Basket Makers, Furniture Makers, Woodturners, Pewterers (he wore hand-cranked socks!), Upholsterers, and Rachel, who has a Royal Warrant to make hats for the Queen. All very friendly and chatty, the official photo is above. Can't take booze into lunch, they stopped that 430-yr old tradition of claret some years ago apparently, you can only have water. Met the judges and went in, 23 of us in all. Quite simple lunch, pan seared fillet of hake with Pont Neuf Potatoes (chips!), strawberry tart, cheese board, coffee with chocolate mint, and then the judges went straight back to work. No processions, no ceremony. The judges either side of me, Anne Molyneux (who asked about the crocheted fuchsias I was wearing) and Andrew Lees, were very jolly and chatty, still in their robes and wigs. A really lovely outing, I feel so honoured to have been "picked". Keep knitting, it can be an exciting life!

Wednesday, 19 June 2019

A thousand thumbs

Today I completed my 500th pair of handwarmers for the Framework Knitters Museum. That's one thousand tubes knitted on the machine with the ribber in place, and one thousand hand knit thumbs picked up on 20 stitches for 8 rows. 160,000 stitches for the thumbs alone! 84 sts, 80 rows, for each tube equals 336,000 stitches, or 40,000 turns of the crank handle, and that's not counting the number of waste yarn rows or the times I have had to frog and repeat. If I had been asked in December 2010 (when I started) to knit 500 pairs, I would have either fainted or said "no" (or both). But truly, it has not been a hardship and has raised oodles of money for this charming museum, my second home.