Tuesday 24 June 2014

An apology

The other day I went through spam comments to see if there were any real ones among them - I already knew I don't very often, but had no idea I was that bad at it! I found five kind comments, a couple of them several months old, which is really embarrassing. Barb, Rachelle, KnitNigel, Johanne and Marika: I'm sorry it took me so long to see and publish your comments. Thanks for writing!

I'm in the middle of two new projects. First, a baby blanket for a relative of mine, who recently gave birth to a boy. I had some balls of  Rowan milk cotton dk in my stash, a free gift (or was it a lottery prize? not that it really matters) from Tummelisa at a knitting event last year.

The bunny pattern is by Stacylynn Cottle on Ravelry. I've changed the shape of her blanket design, knitting it diagonally for two reasons. First, I don't feel like calculating how many stitches to cast on to get a size and shape that looks ok with the amount of yarn I have. (It has since been discontinued, so it would be difficult to get hold of more if needed.)  Starting in a corner and increasing until there is at least half the amount of yarn left like the easiest thing to do: then I can be certain there is enough to knit the second half using decreases instead. The shape might become a bit strange for a blanket (square-ish?) but then the baby isn't likely to mind. Second, I simply prefer knitting things when there is some shaping involved.

My other favourite work in progress is an attempt to recreate an 18th century sweater at Nordiska museet, not an exact copy of it (when it was new, that is - but isn't it in good shape considering how old it is?) but something that looks authentic enough. It's a surprise for a member of an 18th century group. She's a hard-working mother of four, so she isn't likely to have much time to read blogs and discover it here... And even if she does, I guess it will still be a surprise but in a different way.

I'm making each border of carnations slightly different on purpose. And occasional carnations different by accident! Normally, I correct mistakes I discover, but in this case some irregularities seem like a good thing.

Friday 6 June 2014

Getting it right

I always find it rather tricky getting good photos of my finished projects (works in progress are often easier as they're smaller), especially shawls. Here are some photos of the shawl I finished late last night, each with advantages and disadvantages. (The shawl is for my friend Barbro. I'm seeing her on Monday - perhaps she will be my model. After all, knits look best when worn.)

On the ground: it doesn't lie flat, but the green background is nice and the pretty flowers go well with the lace pattern.
Daisy shawl

On a wall: the trellis made it easier to arrange the shawl, but it shows through. Perhaps it doesn't matter that much; it matches the lace grid. I love the honeysuckle to the left!

Trellis shawl

On a gate: the background is a bit of a mess, but I could get most of the shawl in the photo.

I'm happy with how the centre point turned out - see previous post.

As mentioned above, I finished it last night. I had returned home after an unforgettable concert with L'Arpeggiata, which opened this year's Stockholm Early Music Festival; I was so high on the music that I might as well stay up a couple of hours to knit the last rows, cast off, wash and block the shawl and think about the concert. They were all superb, but I was especially captivated by Vincenzo Capezzuto's singing.

Wednesday 4 June 2014


Thanks for your comments about my future job at HV! I've spent a few days twining and stitching like mad (even compared to my normal standards - whatever normal is) during a fabulous course at Dala-Floda Värdshus. Imagine the thrill I got not only looking at but also touching and examining

mitts from the 19th century:

and heaps (literally!) of jackets with twined sleeves from the same period:

not to mention getting to spend time with both old and new knitter friends.

After this orgy my mind is full of twined ideas, so I'm knitting lace patterns while I try to make my mind up where to start. This shawl is the same pattern as the white one in my previous post, but with two changes: it consists of two triangles instead of three, and there is a column with flowers in the middle.

My intention was to cast off here, but there is quite a lot of yarn (Viva from Wetterhoff) left, so I'm going to keep knitting for a few more rows to make a nice frame for the last flower.