Bandananananana

(With a nod to Nanny Ogg, who “knew how to start spelling ‘banana’, but didn’t know how you stopped.” – Terry  Pratchett, Witches Abroad)

I’ve been just a little bit in love with the Bandana Cowl pattern for quite a while – stylish, snuggly, no ends to flap around and get in the way (unlike a scarf).  However, I don’t have too many chunky yarns in the stash, and I’m trying to work my way through what I have.  And anyway, my Wolfram cowl, which is heavy DK/light aran weight, is plenty warm enough for even the cold, snowy weather we’re having at the moment.  Since ‘what I have’ includes a lot – a lot of fingering/sock weight yarns, I decided to re-work the pattern (which is available for free!) for sock yarn.

This yarn is the Rincewind colourway (see, it all ties back to Terry Pratchett!) from the Twisted Disc yarn club.  It’s a similar composition to my own Footsie, which I know reacts very well to finishing the tumble-dryer, coming out softer and fluffier, just right for a cowl.  (Note: I’d not tumble-dry socks or anything fitted made with Footsie, but I’ve experimented with the tumble dryer for finishing fabric woven with it, and the transformation is wonderful). Besides, doesn’t a washable cowl sound like a really good idea?
I love some of the colours in here – though I find the black (actually, I think it’s very dark navy blue) to be a bit jarring along with the softer washes of everything else.

I’m actually nearly finished with the knitting now – only a few more rows and the top border to knit.  I *think* it’s going to take slightly less than 50g of the yarn, which is great news in a way – and a shame in another, as I’m going to have to find something else to do with the remainder.

The garter border is flipping up something *crazy* right now.  I think it’s a combination of the natural transition between garter stitch and stockinette, aided and abetted by the sharp decreases that make the point at the front, and the extra tension from the many, many picked up wraps that make the ends of the short rows, running along the transition.  It will be interesting to see if the top border flips as badly (no short rows at the top!)

If this is a success, I will ask the original designer’s permission to write up the pattern and distribute it (for free, of course, since the original is free). The world has a lot of deep-winter cowls, and I think it could use a few lighter, wash-and-wear ones for those transitional  seasons – or even wearing indoors in the chillier times.

Sock in progress

I mentioned that I’ve been working on a new sock, in Footsie-HT:

It ran into a problem: I got as far as the ankle, and discovered it was just too tight for me to pull on over my heel.  Bugger!

So, I restarted, and am now down to the ankle again.  Sneak peek?  OK!

I’m really enjoying the textural nature of this stitch pattern, so I’m planning to use a heel-flap construction, and continue the pattern down onto it.

In other news, I’m heading off to Cottenham tomorrow morning to trade at the Cottenham Village College Summer School – the same venue as Textiles In Focus.  The car is already packed – well, kinda – and it should be a great day out.  A fantastic way to kick off the weekend!

Escape Velocity

I have totally lost my Monogamous Knitter status.  Recently, some of the design ideas that constantly orbit my brain have been making their way onto the needles.  And it turns out that you can’t just have one on the go; when one hits a roadblock, you need to be working on another whilst your brain figures a way around the first.


all scrunched up

Recently, one of the orbiting designs has achieved escape velocity. For the first time in ages, I am knitting like a fiend, itching to see how this turns out.  And you’ll have to wait, too!  With any luck, it will be finished in time for me to show it off at Knit Nation, in the middle of July.  Yeah – sure it will!  I might have another one done by then!

I *can* tell you that the yarn is ‘Magrat’, the first installation of the Shameless Twist ‘Twisted Disc’ yarn club. I’ve joined fibre clubs in the past, but it’s taken a Discworld-themed club (sanctioned by Sir Terry himself), to make me sign up for a yarn one.  I’m thinking it was worth the wait; this stuff is lovely, and I’m having a blast knitting with it!