Oh, yes, I have been knitting. I’m not sure what happened through the final third of 2021, but things are on the mend and I’ve experienced a resurgence of enjoyment in the craft.

I finished the sparkly socks before New Year’s Eve, though I didn’t get around to wearing them at New Year. I’m very pleased with them. I did a knit one, purl one rib for the cuff and that’s probably all I’d change as knit two, purl two makes a better cuff in my opinion.

I worked a twisted rib for the heel flap which makes for a nice, neat look. I chose to do a barn toe over the straighter, flatter standard toe with Kitchener stitch to close it. I can’t honestly say either is my favourite to wear and I do them turn and turn about. I felt like doing a barn toe this time, next time I might not. I have rather a lot of this sparkly wool left and I shall keep this to hand until I can think of some other little project it might suit. A bit like the small ball of DK-weight hand-dyed wool that was left over after I knitted my beanie hat two years ago. The ball that sat in my notions bag until I got to the short colourwork area on the gift knit I’ve just started. It’s not that I was too lazy to get off the settee and grab the ball of yarn I’d intended to use, but it suddenly hit me that the ball beside my hand would work equally well.

This gift knit is easier than the one I made for Christmas and I feel more confident about it, but it does have one massive downside – it’s knit on a circular needle. It took precisely two rows for me to remember why I hate working on circulars so much. That being said, I’ve already gone off-piste with the pattern so I thought I’d better behave myself and knit it in the round like it’s been designed. You’re supposed to start by knitting a lace panel which makes the bottom band and then pick up stitches all the way along it and start knitting the main body, but I didn’t like how the lace panel was working up. It felt more natural to me to knit the body and then return and knit the lace panel at the end so that is what I’m doing.

One of the reasons I’m keen to work on this gift knit is that I have an idea of the first project I want to knit for myself this year, and I have the yarn set aside to make it. There’s nothing like knowing what I want the following project to be to get me moving on an existing one. My first “me” project for 2022 will be a sleevess waistcoat/vest/gilet in a gorgeous semi-solid pink yarn I ordered from Riverknits. I’m going to use a set of sumptuous mini-skeins that I received as a gift a year ago to make a wide front band/shawl collar. Whilst the main body will definitely be knitted, I think the collar might well be crocheted. If I wind the mini-skeins into a continuous magic ball (where you make a secure but practically invisible knot to join the ends together and simply keep on winding several colours into the one ball) then I can use up every scrap of the wool and the band/collar will be as wide as the yarn allows.

Well, that’s the theory. Technically, I have until March to complete my gift knit, but I hope to have it done by February so I can do a birthday cast-on of my own project. That’s quite easy to say sitting here at the end of the holiday season, but once work is in full flow again we’ll have to see whether it can be achieved.

10 thoughts on “Clickety-clack go the knitting needles

    1. I think so much rides on finding the right project for where your head is. If I am in a funky knitting way, I need quick and easy patterns to sustain me until my brain can get into a more complex pattern again.

    2. You’re so right. When I can’t find quite what I want to knit my sister says my head just isn’t in the right place and after a while it will all sort itself out. Doesn’t stop me starting the wrong projects, though, and getting stroppy because they aren’t quite right!

  1. Isn’t that feeling of being excited about what will come next so fulfilling?! I’m so glad you’re feeling it.
    It’s so great how all knitters are different, I knit everything on circular needles and can’t imagine not

    1. Hi, Kath. Yes, I love that stage where you have the yarn and a good idea of how the finished garment will look, but you haven’t yet cast on so all the little doubts about whether it will turn out okay that come as you’re knitting are still in the future.
      I think knitting on straight needles will all-but die out with my generation. I think all knitters should make one or two garments “in pieces” just to know they have the seaming skills in their repertoire, similarly to how I’ll knit the occasional garment in the round because it’s good to walk a mile in the other person’s shoes. With your experiences in sewing garments, the tailoring aspects of knitting flat and seaming a garment should make some sense.

    2. Oh. Wow. It didn’t even occur to me that you’d want to knit flat on a circular needle! I expect either which way it’s a case of sticking with what we each find most comfortable. I can just about bring myself to admit that I’d rather use a circular needle to knit a garment in the round than using double-point straights, though that might be because I’ve never tried to knit a garment on double-point straights! I still use double-point straights for socks.

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