Saturday, August 16, 2008

This and that

After the sweater race earlier this summer I've made a few small things that only took a couple of days. First up are the Pomatomus socks, July in Sockklubben. This is probably the first yarn I actually bought for the club, one that is interesting without hiding the lace etc. that these socks always have (Opal Fantasie 1914). I didn't like the patten at first, and spent a week trying to knit them without the yarnovers, but finally got tired of ripping and reknitting and made them according to the instructions. I even got hold of 2.75 mm dpns a while ago so I could use the right size needles. They are a bit big, and I should probably have used 2.5 mm for a better fit, but who says I have to keep them. They are modelled by Mr P who had taken this modelling position on the sofa, all I had to do was put on the socks. He has inherited my cold that kept me away from this weeks knitting café, now I've missed three weeks in a row...

Last weekend I was at a birthday party for a friend in my folk music group. Since I wasn't sure if we were getting her anything from the group, I made her a couple of wrist warmers just in case. They are good to have if you play the fiddle outdoors, like we often do. The yarn is Sandnes Lanett in charcoal grey, leftovers from when I made piles of baby clothes from their lovely patterns. The pattern is Berta from the booklet Muddar from Sticka!, and had I followed the written instructions the would have looked very diffrent form the picture, I had to make several changes to get the lace edge right. I think the first one took five times as long to make as the second. ( Really nice party by the way, thanks K.!)

Finally my knitting for the Olympics. I didn't register for any KAL, because I wasn't sure how much time I would have, but I cast on just in time for the opening cermony and it looks like it will be finished on schedule. It is a shawl by Jane Sowerby, but not from her book on Victorian lace, but a variation on the Spider's web pattern for Knitter's magazine. There will be another variation free on their website, but last time I checked it wasn't published yet. In the picture you can see the half hexagon center, but the edge is what makes it special and I will be getting back to that now. Finished this part to the men's tennis double final, where Sweden got the silver.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Utmaning (challenge)

I've been asked by Maria to answer some questions, and since my policy is to stick to knitting and write in English, I will translate the questions and do my best to find a knitting angle...

Jag har blivit utmanad av Maria att svara på några frågor, och eftersom jag har bestämt mig för att hålla mig till stickning ska jag försöka vinkla det dit...

* Hur ser din att-göra-lista ut i fem punkter för idag?
1. Skriva lite på bloggen
2. Åka och titta på persienner till vardagsrummet, så jag kan sitta där mitt på dagen och sticka
3. Kontakta dagis och fritids inför höstterminsstarten
4. Göra klart min första Pomatomus, juli i Sockklubben
5. Laga en god middag till min man som börjar jobba igen efter semestern idag

* Vad gjorde du för 10 år sen?
Bodde själv i Kramfors det året och for till Island med familjen på sommaren. Köpte mönster och material till två islandströjor, en till min lillebror som inte kunde följa med och en till mig. Brorsans var ljusgrå med keltiska slingor i brunt på oket och den fick han i julklapp. Min supersnygga har jag inte börjat på än... Den största upplevelsen på resan var nog annars att se musikalen Grease på isländska med min tremänning. Vi bestämde det med hjälp av e-post, första gången jag använde det som jag kommer ihåg. Under året kandiderade jag i kommunvalet, spelade i klassisk orkester och lärde mig konversera på franska också...

* Vilka platser har du bott på?
Fränsta, Umeå, Kramfors, Sörberge och Sundsvall, alla i mitten av Sverige utom Umeå som ligger lite nordligare. Sommartid i Rinna i Östergötland tills jag var 15 år, inte så långt från Östergötlands ullspinneri, men det fanns nog inte då.

*Fem saker du skulle göra som biljonär!
1. Utbilda mig till textilkonstnär och skapa och hålla kurser
2. Skapa stipendier för andra som vill ägna sig åt sitt hantverk på heltid
3. Resa på långresor; hyra hus i Frankrike, Irland och andra platser som lockar
4. Fixa till huset lite lagom och skaffa en pålitligare bil
5. Skämma bort mina föräldrar, men inte barnen

Regler som följer med utmaningen

- Svara på alla frågor

- Välj ut fyra personer som du vill skall svara och utmana dem i deras bloggar

- Låt personen som utmanade dig veta när du svarat på utmaningen

Jag skickar utmaningen vidare till några jag är nyfiken på: Eva, Cessi, Emma och Ulrica.

Hade tänk skriva om alla mina nya stickningar, men det får bli nästa gång.

And in English...
* What five items are on your to-do-list today?
1. Write something on my blog
2. Go and look at blinds for the living room, so I can knit there during daytime
3. Get in touch with day care for the children for the coming semester
4. Finish my first Pomatomus, July in Sockklubben
5. Prepare a nice dinner for Mr P, who started work again today after his vacation

* What did you do ten years ago?
Lived by myself in Kramfors that year, and and went to Iceland with my family in the summer. Bought patterns and yarn for two Icelandic sweaters, one for my younger brother who couldn't join us and one for me. My brother´s was light grey with a brown, Celtic pattern on the yoke and he got it for Christmas. My superb sweater hasn't been started yet... The greatest experience on the trip was probably seeing the musical Grease in Icelandic with my second cousin. We arranged it over e-mail, the first time I used it as far as I can recall. During that year I was also a candidate in a local election, played in a classical orchestra and improved my French.

* In what places have you lived?
Fränsta, Umeå, Kramfors, Sörberge and Sundsvall, all in central Sweden except Umeå which is more notherly. Summertime in Rinna in Östergötland until I was 15 y o, not far from Östergötlands ullspinneri, but don't think they had started back then.

*Five things you would do as a billionaire!
1. Educate myself in textiles and become an artist and give workshops
2. Create sholarships for others who would like to work full time in crafts
3. Go for long trips; rent houses in France, Ireland and other fascinating places
4. Do some work on the house and get a more reliable car
5. Spoil my parents, but not my children

Had planned to write about all the new things I'm knitting, but that will have to wait until next time.

Monday, August 4, 2008

Family summer

This year we have stayed close to home and had our relatives come here to visit us. This has meant more work around the house, many short excursions in the area and nights spent over long dinners rather than knitting in the sofa. This has given me more time to reflect on what I really want to knit, rather than just starting new things all the time. I really want to get back to knitting more traditional patterns, with my own modifications and modernisations. I also want to look more at what the family wants and needs and not just fall for new yarns and patterns. All the craft shops I've seen this summer have inspired me to think about what I could knit and sell. It would have to be of high quality but affordable and quick to make, and not something that is already out there. I have an idea, but I'm not sure I have the time to do it...

Another thought that I have had for some time is to start spinning. As I wrote last time I have made my first serious attempt, and here is the result.

After spinning, plying and washing my 50 g of corriedale wool left me with 27 m of bulky yarn. I need to work on making it more even and with less twist, but I think I got the general idea of it. I also ended up with a z-twist since I used the "wrong hand" compared to the directions, so I'll try it the other way next time and see how that works. My favourite part was the plying, when those unruly strands suddenly became yarn. I used a center pull ball and my hand spindle and it was so much easier than the spinning, but I should have used the larger spindle because it got so much more volume compared to the first thread.

I've also finished my "late night easy knitting" again. Even though I have other things I should work on that easy piece by the sofa gets all my attention these days. This is the lovely Cheshire Cat Stole made in Färgkraft 1-ply in the colour Sommarnatt (Summer Night). The yarn started out in a more complicated pattern, but the colours dominated and it needed something with cleaner lines. One skein was enough for a 170 x 50 cm stole. Since the yarn is heavier than the original I made it narrower by making one repeat less, and then just knitted until I ran out of yarn.

Finally a picture taken outdoors which does the colours more justice. The shawl is modelled by my mother-in-law. She got a pair of socks for her trouble, those red Seduction Socks that where too small for me.