The sun did not shine.
It was too wet to play.
So I sat in the house
And knitted on that cold, cold, wet day.
It looks delicious - as if it might taste of blackberries or blackcurrant. I can't wait for it to dry out so that I can get busy with the needles.
What she found was Sea Tangles, a pattern designed by Kie Zuraw that uses a thread-sized yarn knitted with US 6/4mm needles, making a thing like fishing net. It really is fascinating because the pattern is random—it's basically stockinette with inconsistent cables (tangles) here and there to make each "sweater" unique. You can download a pdf of the pattern or go online and open up a file each time you wish to knit, and every time you open this file, the cables are different. Keeps you guessing.
I decided to take Katie's challenge, especially since the designer said mistakes are acceptable: "if you make a “mistake”, just forget about it and keep going!" I can do that. I contacted Habu Textiles in New York and ordered three spools of silk thread blended with steel—yes, steel, which gives it a bit of memory—and they were very friendly and shipped my order as soon as they could.
(the one sleeve with a spool from Habu)
I have struggled a little because working with such thin fiber means I have to wear reading glasses to knit, but it's going well, I think. All I have at this point is a single sleeve, but I'll keep going. Sea Tangles. Who would have guessed you could knit a pullover sweater with a wad of string?
They're zwartbles, a rare Dutch breed, I spun samples of the fleece a week or so ago - one small skein from Wallace, a 1-year-old ram (first shearing) and one from Bear, an older Ewe. They're both rich black, the young fleece (below left) is much more bouncy and elastic, the older (below right) is straighter and smoother, and has he odd silver shimmer running through it. I now have the two complete fleeces.
Moira Hickey marches across sodden fields on Fair Isle to look at the importance of knitting to the islanders at a time when knitting is about to be dropped from the curriculum. Besides meeting the sheep and discussing the traditional techniques, she asks about the viability of a 'fair trade' product handmade from fleece to jumper, and whether hand knitting should be kept alive as a tradition on the island or be developed to encourage tourism.
Broadcast on Thursday 5th August 2010 and available on the iPlayer
This is a little coat that I usually make for new borns, not that they wear this sort of thing anymore. but this one I have just made for my niece Liz for Max. who is about 12 weeks old now, he is gorgeous, and I have been allowed to baby sit!
I have two skeins, approx 75 turns each of the 15" niddy = 150*4*15 / 36 = 250 yards.
I dyed the fibre before spinning for my last project. This time I'm going to do it the other way around to see the difference. First to decide on a colour.... and a pattern...