Sunday, February 18, 2007

Radical Lace Knitting?

An exhibition at the Museum of Art and Design in New York has come to my attention. How I wish I lived in New York. (Well, of course I don't, but I wouldn't mind having a look at this Radical and Subversive Lace Knitting stuff.) I had a look at the Teachers' Pack, too - partly because I'm a teacher, partly because I find you often get more information if you pretend you are a student. I think the "History of Knitting" section is very good and the ideas for activities to further enhance the museum experience are probably worth doing myself at home. Freddie Robbins, of course, is the one who designed those weird gloves with hands on the ends of the fingers and who had the knitted wedding, I believe. There's a free pattern for another pair of weird gloves here. (The story of Struwwelpeter always gives me the creeps.)

I finished Ene's scarf and blocked her and now she is done, done, done:

Seen there reclining on a bush in the garden, and here lazing around on a chair in the kitchen:

The second picture here gives a more true impression of the colour. She is more of a shawl than a scarf. Pretty all the same.

I think she might end up being a present for my MIL - somehow I seemed to miss her birthday what with the hospital saga. Now she's gone off to Italy for a few weeks, so I'm wondering about sending the scarf/shawl out there, or just waiting until she gets back.

The answer to what the heck I'm knitting with the Gedifra sock yarn is the "Scrawl" that I mentioned before. It really is totally mindless knitting (not radical at all) and perfect for sitting in front of the TV and watching David Suchet inhabit the role of Hercule Poirot, which is what I've been doing for a large part of today.

I like the way that the shaping for this garment is done by changing needle sizes (although the largest size, 6.5mm, is just about my limit for comfort.)

Heather asked where the yarn came from. This is Gedifra Fashion Trend Sportivo and I bought it from Webs, where it was in the sale. I was quite impressed with the service I had. I sometimes think that smaller retailers work harder to please the customer. I have ordered yarn from small outfits in the US and had the goodies in my paws in four days. Webs took a little longer, but not an inordinate amount of time. They also charged only the actual cost of postage plus $2, which I really don't think is bad at all.

Kat asks if the scarf I made (and I think she's talking about the Silk Garden one) was easy to knit. Always a difficult question - what I find easy might be the most difficult thing you have ever done (and vice versa, of course.) I don't think it was hard at all. There are only two rows in the pattern and you just keep repeating and repeating and repeating until you get bored/run out of yarn/find the thing to be long enough (whichever comes first.) I think I cast on 30 stitches and used 3 balls of Noro Silk Garden, because that's what I had at hand. Cast on more stitches and have a wider scarf, use the same amount of yarn and it'll be shorter, use more yarn, it'll be longer. It's your knitting, you decide. I did, however, find this site, with a stitch by stitch explanation of how to execute this pattern. I urge you to have a go.

And MaryAnnLucy has me intrigued - she obviously lives within a stone's throw of myself. How did you get that picture of Shakespeare's birthplace with nobody else in shot? Whenever I pass by there the place is over-run with tourists of all complexions. Maybe you were there at the crack of dawn??

I leave you with a picture of the Saturday field, looking grey and miserable and nothing like as romantic as it was in the snow:


Heather said...

Thanks for the details on the sock yarn. It really looks beautiful knitted up. I think I see a Webs order or two in my future ...

Kat said...

i love the shawl, its such a lovely pink, can i ask what blocking is? I'm still new to this whole knitting thing, addicted, but new! Can you possibly explain?

littlelixie said...

Oooo, lovely stuff! Bummer about el cat-o but what can you do. Wish I could have rehomed her for you. How amazingly with-it to grab a sock while being wheeled away. Makes me wonder whether knitters shouldn't have some sort of emergency bag like the bags country midwives always keep by their doors for emergency callouts in old books. Just In Case.

maryannlucy said...

We took the photos of SBP on a Sunday morning about 3 weeks ago. It was really cold, and completely tourist you say, amazing! We then went onto the Book Fair at KES where we bought some Womans Weeklys from the 1940s with some fab knitting patterns in them.
I love the new shawl, yet another one of yours that I covert.

allisonmariecat said...

Oh, Ene's Shawl is beautiful! What a great color, to say nothing of the stitchwork. Someday I will attempt a shawl in laceweight yarn. Probably when the baby leaves for college :)

The scrawl looks so much fun! It will be a nice wardrobe brightener.

Opal said...

Thanks for turning me onto the Scrawl pattern. It looks like something I'd like to add to my wardrobe!