Sunday, January 29, 2006

Olympian Effort

I've no doubt that many, if not all of you, will have heard of Stephanie's Knitting Olympics. Perhaps not so many of you will have come across Margene's Eddie the Eagle Olympic Challenge. If you have been reading my blog for any length of time at all, you will know that I am a process knitter and not a product knitter. I really like the knitting. I'm not all that bothered about having the thing at the end of it. I have happily sold newly-finished items right off my back, not exactly in the street but certainly to people who I have only just met.

If I were to be stranded on that desert island, with only one set of needles and enough yarn to complete one item (and lets hope it would be a shawl - lots of yardage; skinny (technical term) needles; plenty of bang for the buck), if I were to be stranded and if I finished the item, would I wrap myself in it? No, of course I wouldn't. I'd rip it right back and make it into something else. Probably another shawl, maybe a hammock, almost certainly not an item of swimwear (I cannot bring myself to think of a knitted bikini, particularly not on this particular body). You get the picture - it's the process, not the product.

In the spirit of being a process, not a product, knitter, I urge you all to knit something during the Winter Olympics and to love each and every stitch; to strive for perfection - whether it's in the cast-on (maybe you could learn a new one, perfectly adapted to the job); in the formation of stitches (maybe you could learn to knit holding the yarn in your other hand, or knit backwards, or learn the Norwegian purl); whether it's in the finishing or the blocking. Just do it and do it as well as you can. (As my mother always said, "You can only do your best.") Do your best and if you do learn something new along the way, let me know about it - leave a comment. Everyone's a winner, here.

I'm still amazed at the fact that, though I am now working only half the hours I was before the great regime change, I still don't seem to have those oodles of hours, stretching out into the distance, that I thought I might have had. Of course I'm knitting (just like always); and I'm still working on the other, finished object, blog; I'm doing lots of cooking (which I love); and plenty of cleaning (which I know will be a real pain when the novelty wears off). I've also been venturing out a little more - to eat Thai food with Chef Clare the other day and out again tomorrow, to eat who knows what with the girls.

The knitting. I was lying in bed the other morning and my eye fell on a cardigan/jacket thing that I made out of Colinette "Giotto". I never really liked it and I never really wore it. I decided it was time to reclaim the yarn. #1 son (at home because not well) and I had a good time unravelling the whole lot:

It was christened the "broth jacket" by a previous chef at work. I think you can see why. I don't know what it's going to be in its new incarnation. Time will tell. Maybe a shrug thing. Any ideas, anyone?

I have completed half the pink baby tam jacket:

So, the stitches of the first section become the cuff. I did it in the round - less sewing the better. The bit at the top needs to be grafted (pass the wine, pass the chocolate), leaving a gap for the head. Then I need to knit another one and pick up the stitches all round the rest of it and do a bit of ribbing. Job done.

Hope it can be done quickly - I can't wait to cast on for the Kimono.

No comments: