Sunday, April 14, 2013

Sunday 14 April

My resolution to only knit for myself in 2013 is going well so far. I find it hard to resist knitting for the kids, but I'm getting out of the habit of thinking 'I could knit or crochet a gift'. It's also lovely to spend time making something and actually getting to keep and wear it. I'm hoping that though I'll start to make things for others again next year, I will be a little more selective and remember me too.

The last two projects I finished were a shawl and some socks.

14yo is my willing model again! 

I was given this yarn by my Dutch colleagues for my birthday a few years ago. The colours were so me, really spot on, and I wanted to find a pattern that was just right for it. It took a while but I knew I'd know when I saw the right pattern, and this one was it. It is The Age of Brass and Steam and I loved the name immediately - it made me think of vintage farm machinery and steam fairs, where often the steam engines are so beautifully polished. It wasn't just the name I liked, I liked the look of the pattern too and it seemed to go well with my yarn, so I cast on last month and knitted it in time for our trip to Wales a fortnight ago - a vintage tractor run seemed like a fitting occasion for its first outing.

Again this yarn was a gift, this time from my friend Mandie in Cornwall. We got to know each other through a swap just over a year ago, hit it off and have stayed in touch. She sent me a lovely project bag (with tractors on - how perfect is that?!) and this yarn for my birthday last year. Then my friend Alex designed a sock pattern called Mandy's Heart Socks. Voila, perfect yarn/pattern match!
I have knitted socks since I was in my late teens, but always used what I considered the traditional top down method, that is, starting at the cuff and working your way down to the toe. These ones are the opposite way and it took a little getting used to (everything's in reverse!), but they fit beautifully. I had so much fun knitting them, seeing the little heart cables take shape, feeling the thickness of the socks and looking forward to being able to wear them. It was still very cold here in the UK while I was knitting these and nothing keeps your feet warm as hand knitted socks do. These also had their first outing on our tractor run, and despite the weather being just a few degrees above freezing and a bitter easterly wind blowing, my feet never got cold.
They are probably the nicest socks I've ever knitted, and I'm quite sad I won't be able to wear them for another few months, as the weather seems to finally have turned into Spring!