Thursday, March 15, 2007

Head the size of a planet

G'day all!

A couple of days ago I went along to the Stitches and Craft show. It is a big show that has all sorts of crafty things as long as they are (I have to call them) "lady crafts." It doesn't do things like woodworking or metal working - those are "man crafts." Yes yes beat me up now - I have done woodworking. I have made a table out of Australian hardwoods and done mortise and tenon joints, etc. Women can do and do do woodworking and metal working (though I find that the tools are all designed for stronger and larger grips than mine). But that is not the aim of this show. It is for the "gentle" arts of patchwork, scrap booking (I can't pick on scrap bookers much as I want to - after all people say why knit and spin?), embroidery, beading, etc, etc, and of course knitting. There was even a cake decorating display.

So I go along to the show. I talked to everyone on the wool stands except for one place cos they were busy. Even introverts like me can get enthused about things and need to yap to people. So poor Sarah Durrant got an ear bashing for about half an hour (it was not busy at her stand then) and I only bought one little skein of yarn, but what a skein!


Colinette Jitterbug I wuv you!

Then of course I found the ecoyarns stand after having a whinge to Sarah about how "eco-friendly" man made fibres really aren't, and of course I bought some Tofutsies and some natural coloured cotton to try spinning. I am *such* a hypocrit, but when yarn that I have been wondering about has been thrust in my face (ok, I gravitated straight to it and grabbed it and wanted it all for my very own)....


I had a good chat to Annie at AK (that is ak, not ay-kay) Traditions. She is getting some lovely NZ merino spun up and dyed and gosh does it feel good! 8 ply and 4 ply. Mmmmm. I now want some to knit up a sock in an idea I have...

And that is the crux of my problem at the moment. I am not the only one on the internet busting with ideas. My head must've expanded to keep all these ideas inside it. Surely! Only I can get through the doors still. It is driving me nuts - I have so many ideas about things to do and make that I am not getting many of any of them done. If it takes more than about an hour to get it all set up and going, I wander off to do another one of my whack ideas. I lay in bed at night thinking about ideas and reading through stitch libraries. I want to spin yarn and dye it and make it into wonderful things. Only I sometimes find my ability to create the wonder I have in my head is not matched by what I make.

Many years ago I used to draw a lot. Only problem was that I did not have the technical ability to bring my ideas into being on the paper. I sometimes have the same problem in knitting. I have a great idea but Mr Brain, the size of a planet or so it feels at the moment cos it surely can't be any smaller to fit these things inside, has some quite obvious shortcomings.


The fingering weight bell flower sock continues. I am *so* not feeling the yarny love with this yarn. Colour is secondary - I can change that if I want but the yarn itself feels like cotton, though it is wool. It feels dense and unlovely to knit with. I think I need a nicer yarn to knit this sock with. At least now I am past the heel, I know it works so I can go as far or as little as I like. I'll keep going for another couple of rounds of the pattern and then find a nice edging for it. Then I'll write it up along with the sportweight verison and see if anyone will test knit any of them for me. I have good ideas about how to upsize them from my usual 64 or 66 stitches too. Then I might send it off to knitty or magknits or whoever.


I am trying to knit up a sock in the tofutsies. It is a very very fine sock yarn, very thin and tends to be a bit splitty. It needs 2mm needles but I only have 2.5s. It also smells weird, like umm shells. Maybe not surprising since it contains crab shell. I would not advise it for people who have shellfish allergies. Anyway, I found a stitch pattern I reallllllllly like in a Barbara Walker stitch library (between two libraries, I have four of her books out ;-). I thought it would be a great sock in the Tofutsies.

Umm, no. The pattern has a rather large eyelet in it, formed from a double yarn over. Perfect for catching toenails (and even toes!) in! Plus since this yarn has very little sproing in it, at least to my hand on the 2.5mm needles, it needs a pattern with some ribbing in it. So I designed my own pattern. It probably isn't my own pattern but after 3 rippings using the old pattern (can you believe I used *exactly* the wrong direction k2tog and ssks? Like used a k2tog instead of an ssk?), I decided that I needed to try something with a little more elasticity to the knitting.


Oh yeah, baby, I am now feeling the yarny love! Well, relatively speaking. I have a feeling that I much prefer yarn that is mostly or all wool.


This is calling to me too - my STR club yarn and pattern arrived this week. At least now I can cross off one of the BW stitch patterns I wanted to try - it forms the basis of this STR installment sock! I know this yarn will be totally cushy!

Oooh, I have an idea for the Jitterbug yarn. Argh!

anon!

PS for locals, I'll be at the Stitches and Craft fair on Saturday arvo, on the handweavers and spinners' guild stand on the first floor. Come and find me and say g'day!

7 comments:

  1. SWTC alleges that the yarn won't cause problems for folks with shellfish allergies - but I am very dubious about that, too. I love that sock you're knitting with the "unlovely" wool.

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  2. Sock yarn ahoy!! Well, even if it doesn't feel great, the cottony wool looks wonderful. It's a beautiful sock pattern! I can volunteer as a test knitter for the sport weight version if you need it!

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  3. I had to leave at 1pm yesterday so didn't get to drop in you, sorry! I bought a ball of Tofutsies as well, and quite accidentally the same colourway :) But I am going to knit the starfish scarf out of it that was in a workshop but I didn't have time to do the workshop so I got the yarn and the pattern a little cheaper instead. I enjoyed the show, there was lots of stuff there I don't do but I figure that that leaves slightly fewer people around the stalls I do want to visit! And I used to sneer at scrapbooking too - until I discovered how some of the stuff used in it goes wonderfully into mixed media textile art!!

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  4. Those socks look great. I do love the colour of the purple one!!

    Oooh STR!! I just finished knitting myself a pair of socks in STR (thats my secret knitting that you worked out was socks)...Will post a piccie after Tuesday!

    Katt

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  5. I really like the purple socks you're knitting. Too bad they aren't that fun to knit. Some sock yarns improve quite a bit after they are washed.

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  6. > then I might send it off to knitty or magknits or whoever.

    Ahem?

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  7. Lovely sock patterns and colours! Shame about the feel but at least they look stunning!

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