What does the last of the housewives do?

Tag: Knitting

Dammit, is there a Knitting Bandwagon now?

Well, then I’m on it. Because today I discovered that you can knit at the movies. Especially if its a kids movie that you’ve already seen and are only going to shut your daughter’s high maintenance friend up from complaining about her sister.

I should first mention that I finished the crocheted beanie and the Muffet only takes it off to go to bed. I’m rather pleased with it.

The Horror originally wanted an identical beanie, but then picked up a Tardis one at Supanova. So, as we’re going skiing the week after next he requested what is essentially a cowl. He wanted to be able to pull it up over his face, to be able to breathe through it and for it to stay in place once he’d put it there.

The easiest way to do this is to just knit a rectangle and sew the short ends up. But there’s a whole lot of bulk at the back of your neck when you’re skiing, the collar of your jacket, a helmet in the Horror’s case, a ponytail in mine. So I decided to make it narrower at the back. What I did was to start off with twelve stitches on size ten needles. Then a row of purl. Then alternate knit and purl rows and increase every knit row by a stitch either end. When I got to a width the stretched from the bridge of my nose to the bottom of the V neck of my jumper I stopped increasing and just knitted and purled on for a while. By the time the movie had finished I was decreasing and finished the thing before it was time to pick up the Horror from his little friend’s place.

He said it was far too big for him, so I’ll keep it for myself, thank you very much. Knitting his smaller one only took me about an hour. Here’s what it looked like before sewing the ends together.

And with the ends sewed together. Yes, his name does start with a K.

He tested it fairly thoroughly, tried it in different positions, breathed heavily through it and pulled it up over his whole face to discover he could see through it, it’s quite a loose knit. He finally declared himself satisfied, he’s a tough audience. Now we won’t have to put up with any complaints about facial discomfort in the snow.

Also now I can start on a new crochet pattern I have. It’s a round beanie with a wide turned up brim that I’m going to do in black and white for watching the boys play soccer. I may have to go yarn shopping again soon, there’s a place in town that looks rather exciting. After the kids go back to school, after skiing. That is if I can still walk by then, but of course I’ll be able to, what kind of talk is that? Just because last year’s trip resulted in what is now a full year of ankle treatments, that has no bearing on this year’s trip. None at all.


A spot of Knitting

The Muffet has a school requirement that at the end of Lent she hand in to her school two knitted squares. These are known as Dorcas squares for some biblical reason and apparently will be sewn into a larger blanket that will be sent to a hot country with no need for extra heating and possibly set fire to. I have taken a short and non representative survey of girls in year seven, and apparently all squares submitted have been actually knitted by an older female relative, rather than the year seven girl. Of course I knitted the Muffet’s contribution, on condition that she actually attempt one herself. She did, but her ability to drop tens of stitches at a time made her effort a little bit too well ventilated for practical purposes. I should start her on her squares for next year now.

To encourage her to knit I went to one of the few remaining haberdashery shops in Sydney, in Turramurra actually, to buy some beautiful wool for her. I normally buy my wool at craft shows, at which this shop exhibits, but there wasn’t a lot of choice at the last show I went to. So now I have a stash or rather lovely wool, a merino/silk mix and an alpaca, and I wanted to knit something with it. I have enough scarves, it was time to try something a bit more adventurous.

The advantages of knitting a headband are numerous. It’s just a strip of knitting, so is fairly quick. You can try something a bit fancy without having to commit to a full garment. And one always needs headbands to keep one’s curly hair off one’s glasses.

I’m still too scared to try cable knitting, but I liked the look of Trinity Stitch. I knocked one up with purple wool and look, you can see where Jane rang me up to ask advice on pony camps.

There, up near the top of the needle. Yes, that is a nut at the top of the needle, the dog chewed off the end when he was going through that stage last year.

It was too narrow and looked like a trial piece. Now that I have the hang of it I’m doing a wider one. The way to do it is this. You cast on twenty four stitches. Do a row of purl. Then you knit then purl then knit all into the one stitch, wrapping the wool to the correct side each time. When you’ve got three stitches on the right from the one on the left, you pull off the left one. Then you gather the next three on the left onto your right needle and purl stitch. Repeat to the end of the row. Do another row of purl. The next row you start with the triple purl, then the knit purl knit into one stitch. The problem I had was numerous interruptions, meaning I could never remember if I was up to a row starting with knit or with purl. I’ve solved it by putting the knitting down either in the middle of a fancy row or at the end of one. Then I could see which one I had just done. When you get to the end of the fancy row you say out loud the last stitch in the row, then do your purl row, then start with the stitch you’ve said out loud, ignoring the derisive comments of your family members.

Anyway, there’s good instructions on the web, and you just sew the ends together when the headband is long enough to sit tightly around your fat head. Maybe when I be done a few I’ll be brave enough to try a pattern that has one of those codexes that look like the Rosetta Stone. Those grannies that can knit anything must have started somewhere.