Tuesday, July 01, 2008


and I'm on leave, yes at the start of 2 weeks annual leave. And best of all I've got a few precious days before my cubs are out of school for the mid year break and in need of supervision. So what did I do with my time, well I finished my pink mittens, and started a new hat, I took Toby to his post-fracture-clinic physio appointment, and I finally went to Guild spinning (2 Wednesdays a month), and generally had a bit of holiday at home. I'm waiting for a visitor, and then we are off on a whirlwind tour of the south, before she leaves for sunnier and warmer climates, tomorrow I'm off to the Milton mill with my fellow knitters and spinners to see if they have any Z twist yarns for more twined knitting, a bit of girls trip really as we have lunch planned and a visit to one of the best antique shops in the south on the agenda as well. But today, the blog report, so I've got a finished object, and I'm still procrasti-knitting on what lace to knit, hence a new project as a distraction.

These are the finished felted mittens, all done, and nearly small enough to wear. Being pink Poppy has adopted them as her own, and I've brushed them a bit to soften up the finish. These are a pair of Mystery sideways mitten by EZ from Knitting around, and a fast garter stitch knit. I think she must have developed them around the time of the mitered baby blanket and the BSJ, and the matching BSJ bonet, booties and cocoon/bunting. They all share the same shaping techniques and all are clever in their own ways.

The mystery sideways mittens are neat to work, a lot of fun, first you knit an odd shape that it pays not to over-think, and then suddenly ...

they fold up into a mitten, just like that! Magic! The sides get woven closed and the cuff is knit and increased and knit some more, and there I am, with a finished mitten. I really should knot some in striped yarn, then the magic of the shaping really stands out.

As you can see the felting didn't change the size much, only a little, which makes them a tad more Poppy sized than before. In hindsight if I had known I would felt these I would have knitted them on a larger needle, to allow possibly more felting.

And I've started a new hat, inspired by a lovely one Ana was wearing at knit night last week, and also by the quick satisfaction of Koolhaas last week. I finally see the appeal of hats, they are fast, take one skein, and very satisfying. Scarves and mittens take a bit more committment, sweaters and shawls a lot more of a relationship with the knitting and the yarn, but hats, almost the quick one-night-stand of the knitters world. I've gone an bought some new yarn, the original Odessa pattern calls for Cashsoft by Rowan which my LYS didn't have, but I found some Sublime, which is Merino, Silk and Cashmere so quite luxurious. Funny thing is the sales assistant had to hunt it out from on top of the button stand tucked away behind the couch in the shop, and then she checked that I would pay $14 for a ball of yarn. If I had a LYS the cashmere merino silk would be at the front, on show for all to see.

So I started knitting Monday but soon found out the beads I had chosen were far to heavy for the hat. I loved the way the teal had a hidden layer of the greenish grey that matched the yarn, but they were to heavy. So I went shopping yesterday for a new set of beads and these ones seem a much better size.

So this these are the beads,

and this is the hat, the beads are subtle but with blocking and wearing my head will push them to the face of the knitting. I'm aiming for a slight suggestion of a sparkle, rather than an obvious beaded knit.

Finally - there might not be a post till next week, on Sunday I'm off to tour a little around the South Island of New Zealand with Jocelyn and Tess, we plan to visit glow worm caves, and penguin nests and Touch Yarns and Ashford factory shops before we part company. It will be a whirl wind 3 or 4 days - not long enough at all, and we want to do e-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g!

So take care, I'll show and tell as much as I can next time, and I might have even started some lace ...


sweetp said...

Your Odessa is going to be very pretty! I wear my one almost daily, its a really comfy hat. Have a nice couple of weeks break

CraftyGryphon said...

Okay, those mittens are just COOL. And a very pretty pink, too!

Bead choice is usually tricky. I've learned (the hard way, after much trial and even more error) that I should find something I *think* would work fine, then actually choose something that's 1/3 to 1/2 a size smaller! (This means I usually get slightly less sparkly things than I want, since what works in my head is much shinier than what works in reality!)

Knitting Linguist said...

It's funny to read this now, having seen all of that lovely knitting in person! Just so you know, the beads worked out exactly as you planned, subtle and sparkly :) Thanks again and again for a wonderful three days!!