Sunday, April 22, 2007

Third time lucky with Perugino, & other news

The whole prioritising thing is going really well. In a moment, an update on those WIPs. But first, this:

My mum, last weekend, getting a late birthday present. We are in a Moroccan restaurant near my sister's house. Can you guess what's in the bag?


They are the Opal Hundertwasser socks that she spotted me knitting over Christmas. She kindly didn't mention the crap sewing on the bottom of the bag, nor the fact that the picot edging looks like something ate it. Thanks Mum.

Now, here's the news on the WIPs.

Spa socks

Are all knitted and looking beautiful. I need to do something about the soles and various kind friends in the knitting community have offered helpful suggestions: thank you! Now I just need to make myself do it. Other than that, though, they're done. Buttons on, ends magicked away. I'm not showing you a photo until they're finished.

Red Jitterbug socks

Are knitted, just awaiting end-weaving & blocking. These were knitted pattern-free thanks to the sage and wonderful advice of Stephanie Pearl-McPhee, aka the Yarn Harlot, in her book 'Knitting Rules'. Steph's simple sock recipe includes the best explanation of the logic of turning a heel that I've ever encountered. She has liberated me from the tyranny of sock patterns. I hereby vow that from now on, all the socks I knit will be pattern-free and by my own reckoning, incorporating whatever combination of cuff, stitch, heel and toe pleases me. I might even make a pair for Stephanie and send them to her.

I'll show you a full-frontal photo of the socks when they're blocked and looking neater. For now, here's an indication of the positively psychedelic fabric that this Mardi Gras shade of Jitterbug yields:


Aah, Perugino. I still love it. I must do - there's a story behind this:

Your eyes do not deceive you; we have here TWO Peruginos, or at least the beginnings. Yes, I have restarted Perugino yet again, now for the third time. Version Three is at the top of the picture. The lower one is Version Two.

Why am I putting myself through the sheer torture of restarting, you may ask, especially since Version 2 is so photogenic? The fact is, I just want this to be perfect. In earlier posts I talked about my dissatisfaction with my first attempt. This included wondering if the colours were a bit matchy-matchy in the order I'd originally chosen. I got to thinking that some of the ribbon yarns were visually disappearing because their colours were making them blend in with the mohair.

When I frogged version 1 (for other, perfectly good, reasons) and started version 2, I deliberately knit the yarns in a different order, to break the colours up a bit. I admit it now, I should have swatched. But instead I just knit on and on, eventually producing the quite large piece of fabric you see in the lower part of the picture here. But a new problem arose. I just didn't like the new colourway that much. I thought it looked a lot better when the similar colours were closer together. I thought about what to do for a long time. I love Justine and I want this to be beautiful. Eventually I started version 3, in something closer to the original order of colours. I had to knit for ages and ages until I had enough fabric to compare with version 2 (no, I still wasn't swatching). You can't really see it here because Version 3 is all bunched up on a bamboo needle, while Version 2 is stretched out on a big Addi circular. But trust me, Version 3 is a lot better. It is totallly going to be worth an extra couple of days of knitting.

And that's all today's knitting news. Coming soon: what projects to take travelling now my Jitterbug socks are done? (Hint, it's not going to be those damned purple lace numbers. Grr.)

PS: For those wondering if that's a Christmas tree in the bottom left corner of the Perugino photo - yes, it is. I will take it down in my own time. I am busy knitting.


Susan @ Damn, Knit & Blast It said...

Perugino - Don't take any bullying or beat yourself up for not swatching !!

You just do very large, thorough swatches!! :-)

Kay said...

Wow, that Mardi Gras is bright!

And that throw'll look lovely when it's done... mmm.

Michelle said...

wow. cant wait till to see the finished throw!!

i *ahem* never swatch!!


RachelL said...

Thank you sisters. The throw is looking sooo much better since I restarted it. I am really pleased with it now. Photos coming later.