Knitting

It ain’t me who’s gonna leave…

Naughty Drawer
This town ain’t big enough for both of us!

Something’s in the naughty drawer!

Even as I wrote in the middle of last week  about my knitting ennui, I was already pretty convinced that my Fairisle Tank Top would win out, if only because nothing else was coming close to catching my interest. And so I ploughed on and knitted the next row of the pattern. It was a lovely, simple row – 5 stitches of orange then one of cream all the way round – so deceptively simple, in fact, that I didn’t realise until I started the next row that it hadn’t been a row in this pattern at all! I was pretty annoyed with myself, I can tell you, so I set to and unpicked it, but as I was doing the tinking back I knew for certain this top was not the right project for me now. Maybe one day it will be right; probably it won’t.

This has, I think, everything to do with me being a product knitter and Fairisle colourwork being a laborious, process-type endeavour. I just don’t enjoy the challenge of it and, whilst I love seeing the pattern develop and the ability to choose my own wild colour scheme, things just go too slowly for me. Plus, of course, there was that aching shoulder about which I was becoming increasingly fixated on the opinion that it must be caused by either using a circular needle, or constantly switching yarns. I yearned to get back to a project knit in pieces on straight needles, something I could get knitted and wear, something using yarn already in my stash, something like this:

Arbon Apr 2020 opening
Fresh from John Arbon

Looking for a new project, I hefted out a few of my knitting books and the moment I set eyes on Martin Storey’s Rimini pattern, I needed look no further. (That link will take you to my previous version of this cardigan from a good few years ago.)

When I first bought this wool I knew that I would knit a colour-blocked garment and that I would like to incorporate some kind of vertical accent to counterbalance the horizontal colour blocks. Rimini, with its columns of very simple eyelets, is perfect. So far I’ve been working on the back and I’m just about to finish the third colour.

IMG_2614

Yes, I’m aware this is really similar in colouring to my previous version, perhaps I just naturally feel the pattern is perfect in a pretty berry palette.

Here’s a close-up of the eyelet pattern.

IMG_2616

The wool is just delightful to work with, very soft and beautifully dyed. I think one of the things I enjoy most when starting a project is winding wool by hand from skein to ball. That is the point where I really appreciate the tones that make up each shade, the richness of the colour, and get a feel for how the yarn will handle as I knit. It’s a gentle getting to know you phase. With hand-dyed yarns (which this is not), there is the added bonus that the yarn looks very different wound into a ball to how it looked in the skein so it’s almost like having a whole new yarn to fall in love with.

The only fly in the ointment so far is that the yarn shades have been much too close to the colour of my needles and, although I like the KnitPro Symfonie very well indeed, I think it would be less strenuous on the eye if I returned to either a paler wood (bamboo is a contender) or even grey metal. That will be for another project, though, because I am superstitious about changing needles partway through a project.

So, that’s where my knitting is at right now. I hope your knitting, or other creative projects, are bringing you some measure of peace or sanity as required. Take care.


I’ve used a quote from the song “This town ain’t big enough for both of us” by Sparks (which entered the UK top 50 this week in 1974) in my planner and so the song is very much on my mind. It is what I am singing under my breath a lot of the day.


 

5 thoughts on “It ain’t me who’s gonna leave…

  1. The yarn is beautiful! I am hopeless at fairisle, can’t be doing with the constant twisting and untwisting of yarn, completely see why you were drawn to the lovely berry colours 😉

  2. It was a tug of war between this Grape set or Arbon’s Burgundy set. I think there might be room in my life fairly soon for a 4-ply vintage sweater in the darkest Burgundy shade. Although I could equally choose one of the Grape shades to make a little short-sleeved jumper to wear with Rimini twinset-style. I need to hop over and check out what you are knitting.

  3. I love those colors and I really like how subtle the changes are. I made a project using yarn the same shade as the needles. I don’t know what I was thinking since I had other needles I could use. Now I am a bit more conscientious about my choosing. I have been experiencing stiffness in my left should and I couldn’t understand why. Then I noticed that I got into the habit of resting my left elbow on the arm rest of the chair I sit in when I knit at night. Funny how little tweaks like that can have larger effects on us.

  4. Hi, thanks, aren’t the colours just splendid? I’ve been perusing clothing online this afternoon (I hesitate to call it fashion because I’m feeling in a distinctly plain mood) and saw a couple of skirts that would look super with this shade. I must admit as I was lugging my groceries home from the supermarket which is about a 12-minute walk from my flat, I did wonder if the shoulder ache might be due more to shopping less frequently than I ought to. You’re right about odd little actions that we don’t even think of. Also, maybe there’s also a bit too much sitting on the settee and not enough activity in my life at the moment.

  5. I had to up my structured activity in the home since I am not working and taking my usual 3 mile lunchtime walk. Also, our gym is closed. I use the treadmill (and catch up on video podcasts) and yoga. I feel torn about food shopping. While I only go every week/10 days, I find myself there longer than I would like, and spend more time at the cashier. I am definitely cooking more so the need is definitely there, but I wonder if it would be better to go more frequently and use the self checkout. I have the perfect light grey cotton skirt with very faint lavender flowers down one side and along a portion of the hem. It would look so pretty! 🙂

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