Thursday, 22 January 2015

A task for a friend.

My office workmate had a thing she loves to wear but it had a small problem and she was scared that if she didn't do something soon, she was going to lose it.

It is a beautiful sweater that she picked up for a song at a second hand store.  One sleeve seam was coming apart and not being a sewer, she was afraid to try to repair it.

I asked if she could bring it in and I would take a look.  I was concerned that it would have been made with cut seams, as these things sometimes are.  I was thrilled to find regular edges and a perfectly ordinary sewn seam, machine sewn , mind, but otherwise ordinary.  So, job one, carefully pull back just a few more stitches, to the point where both of the original threads are in really good shape.  Job two, check the edges on both sides to be sure that there were no weak spots on the last or second last stitches.  All was good.  

A nice mattress stitch did the trick.  Move along.  Nothing to see here.  All seams, A Okay, but it was nice that I could do a simple little thing like this to brighten someone's day. 

What with all the finishing

What with all the finishing on the weekend, I did a fair bit of digging in the WIP boxes.  I have become reacquainted with what was in there. All the Viajante knitting lately and the pleasure I am having working on that, made me wonder about and take a look at the lace weight projects that have been sitting for a very long time.

My very lovely and still much coveted Bridgewater.  I worked so hard to find enough yarn.  I did a search for dyelots and found a source in the very sweet wheatfran who happened to have the lot I needed.  It really is the perfect colour.  

I worked on this shawl and then had a problem with the garter stitch.  I kept dozing off as I was knitting and you can screw up garter stitch badly if you knit when you are sleeping.  Funny that.  I have a couple of inches I have to take back because of multiple errors.  I started this in November of 2012, whole lifetimes ago.  I need to pull this out and work on it again.

And then this brilliant lacy thing.  Zauberball lacewieght and a casual Icarus, one of a pair I started in 2010. February to be precise.  5 years.  

I had mentally put this one to my frog it pile, but now that I look at it, I wonder why.  In my head, it was small and knit on needles that were too fine.  I had the idea that it wasn't even going to be wearable as a small shawl.  Boy is that ever wrong.  Once I finish it and block it, it is going to be truly stunning. And plenty large!  I do have to rip back to the start of the second chart to fix an error, according to my notes, but that isn't any biggie.  This joyful thing is going to be worked on and finished very soon.

I think I once said that knitting these colours in the middle of winter, was the perfect antidote to the dark and it is.   

Wednesday, 21 January 2015

Putting my hands in the drivers seat.

It's been harder than ever before to settle down to one thing after finishing a big project.  To be completely honest, there is a little midwinter slump personally too. A lot of people have that over winter so nothing new there, but it isn't something I have had to deal with before.    Winter has always been full of knitting and sewing and reading.  This winter all these things are hard or rather starting them is.

It's just that for the first time since my world changed so dramatically, I work.  I come home.  No worries about selling or moving or buying or finding a job.  Life is sorted and settled.  And that seems to have unsettled me.

In a lot of ways, this makes me smile.  I have been waiting for this calm for so long, and now that it is here I don't know what to do.  How odd.  How funny.  

I worked yesterday on my Viajante. It is my knitting while I am out knitting.  

Since I picked this up after Christmas (or was it just before?) I have added a foot in length.  It is now  3 keyboards long and is as wide as 1.     Keyboard.  New Unit of measurement!  

It is the perfect knitting when you are struggling to think.  It demands almost nothing at this point. You are long past the point where you need a pattern and counting rows isn't needed even for the most row and stitch counting knitter.  You know when you have to do stuff and then it is quiet in between.  You can focus on what your hands are doing, you can watch each stitch form, watch the needle tip weave its way through, in, around, under.  It's like listening to a metronome with eyes closed.  It is hypnotic and healing, I think.  

I am going to let my fingers do the talking.  This project seems to bring them joy so I will let it flower and bloom until my hands and my heart are ready for some sturdier stuff and feel like starting something new.

Here at home, Hun, the Icelandic sweater is sitting at my feet, waiting patiently.  I am surrounded by calm and peace.  The only thing here that is urgent, that is pushing and thrashing, that feels there is something more I should be doing, is me.  My hands are wiser than I so I will put them into the drivers seat.  

Tuesday, 20 January 2015

There were thoughts of starting another project in my head, but my hands refused to cooperate.  Or maybe it was that my hands were interested but there were no thoughts of the new sweater in my head.  I really don't know which, but I had trouble settling last night.

I ended up working on a standby project.  At the bottom of a basket near me, there is a work in progress afghan.  It is just a single square, a granny square, grown out of all proportion.

It isn't just the ubiquitous groups of three stitches, with a chain.  I am varying the rounds with rounds of solid stitching too.  Beyond this, though, it is going to be a giant granny square.

I did this once before.
 Before it was stolen from me by one of my sons, I kept the blanket close by.  I wore it as shawl and covered me with it as blanket.

It was snuggly and had morphed into this amazingly soft liquid thing that just cuddled and clung in all the right ways.

I have only one nice blanket here with me now and it was time for a little something else.  Besides, it is winter and working on a blanket which covers your lap as it grows is a wonderful thing.

I expect to settle down to something in a few days, but till then my hands keep busy.