Monthly Archives: February 2010

Resistance is futile

The jumper has become a bit difficult to haul around, so for the last couple of weeks I have been stuck with no travel knitting. I had been resisting casting on anything new, for fear that it would slow down the jumper progress. The frustration of not having any knitting to take with me has worn me down and I have cast on for a sock, with strict instructions to myself to only knit on it when it is not possible to be knitting on the jumper.

The pattern is called circle socks, and the yarn is some 3ply handspun bluefaced leicester I dyed before spinning. My yarn is a bit thicker than the yarn the pattern used so I am using 2.75mm needles rather than the 2.25mm recommended. I am not altering the stitch count (yet) though because I would like these to come out larger than the pattern. My foot measures about 10 inches in circumference, but the pattern is written for 7.5 inches.

I have tinkered a bit with the cast on to make sure it is stretchy enough, I cast on 96 sts, then worked a round of purl, a round of (p1, p2tog), then another round of purl, and then went onto round 4 of the pattern.

I did have a bit of a false start with these. My first guess at needle size was 2.5mm, but the fabric was coming out a bit too stiff! There is a fine line between a sturdy sock and something which stands up on its own, and these were on the wrong side of it! The 2.75mm needles seem much better.

Second sleeve

The second sleeve is now finished to the armhole.

Here is the view along the top of the sleeve.

And the underneath.

Back to the body now. There are only about 30 rows to go before I join the sleeves into the body and start working on the yoke!

I have a stinking cold today so am hoping that nice bright knitting will be a good antidote.

More fibrey aquisitions

World of Wool had a 10% off everything January sale which I didn’t quite manage to resist. These lovely goodies arrived last week.

First 200g of 70% Bluefaced leicester, 30% tussah silk.

I am planning to dye this and then experiment with spinning some 3ply for socks I think.

Next 200g of 70% 23 micron merino, 30% tussah silk.

Again I am planning to dye this and spin some 3ply for socks. I am interested to compare it to the bfl and see how they differ in taking the dye, spinning and how well they wear as socks.

I am hoping that the silk will add strength to the wool, but without drastically reducing the elasticity. That is the plan at any rate, we shall see!

Lastly I got 300g of 70% 18.5 micron merino, 30% mulberry silk.

This is the supersoft version of the other merino / silk mix.

I think I will try spinning this one first and then dyeing it. I think I will try and spin a 2ply lace weight, and then make it into some kind of a shawl. I am hoping that writing my thoughts down here I will remember what I was thinking of doing with it all by the time I get round to spinning and knitting it!

Wool from seaweed (via sheep)

In a bid to expand my fibre knowledge I have just received some lovely North Ronaldsay fibre from Scottish Fibres. This is the breed of sheep from North Ronalsay in the Orkney Islands, which lives on the outskirts of the island and eats seaweed. It is a nice soft fibre, although not the smoothest. I think it will make quite a hairy textured yarn.

I have 200g in white, and 200g in brown. The plan is to spin them up separately, then dye the white (although I’m not sure what colour yet), then knit a hat in the two colours. There was an interesting double layer hat in a fairly recent issue of Spin Off that I thought looked quite interesting.

The last elephant

I have finished elephant number ten, the last elephant for a while. No more of my friends are allowed to have children for a while, I am feeling a bit elephanted out.

I used Opal 6ply again. This yarn has a vast number of metres on a 150g ball. I have managed to knit two elephants and a camel out of one ball and there is still some left over!

I used 3mm needles again. This yarn is a little thinner than the Patons yarn I used for some of the elephants, and could probably have been made on 2.75mm needles for a slighly smaller animal, though he would have been harder to stuff then. The pattern (in case you can possibly have forgotten) is Elijah.

First sleeve

I have been knitting like a maniac for the last week, and have now finished the first sleeve to the underarm!

Here is the top of the sleeve.

And here is the underneath, where you can see the shaping.

I am really pleased with how it is coming along. The sleeve has been gratifyingly speedy in comparison to the body too 🙂

I have cast on for the second sleeve, but this week is a bit more busy so my progress will be a little slower.