Saturday, September 8, 2007

Finished Objects

Time for a knitting update! I have been knitting more than spinning, lately, and knitting a LOT of socks!

I am left-handed, but I knit right-handed, like pretty much everyone does. Actually I don't think it much matters which of your hands is dominant when you're knitting (that's what I tell folks I'm teaching), because both hands are working throughout the process anyway. Sorry, I digress. Anyway, I have always attributed my early inability to knit on three needles to my having to brace the working needle on my leg - just not a great choice with short, pointy double-points. So, I never learned how to knit socks until early this year. (!) Really.

My late mother, Maureen, knew how to knit (I think if you grow up in an Irish household, you pretty much learn to do handwork - I could be wrong, but I don't think so), but she didn't really enjoy it much and she was pretty pokey at it.

Case in point #1: When I was a child, I wanted nothing more than a pink, pullover sweater. My Grandmother had made me sweaters, socks, hats, mittens, etc., my entire life, but my Mom was going to knit me this pullover. When she finally finished it, it fit my cousin, Kathryn, who is four years younger than I . . . no photo of this sweater exists, that I know of, but it lives on in my memory.

Case in point #2: in 1974, Redbook published a pattern for shawl-neck, cabled wrapped, belted cardigan that reminded my mom of a sweater she had had as a girl. She promptly ordered the pattern and went out to buy the yarn. By the mid-1980's she had gotten up to where she had to split for the armholes . . . she boxed the entire thing up and sent it to me in Colorado with a note that said, "could you finish this for me?" :-D (I did, and sent it back to her :-) ). That's it, made of the Red Heart yarn called for back in 1974 - a little worse for wear and years on a hanger (and needing a good wash) - but still here :-)

That my Mom could easily knit on three needles and I couldn't was surprising - even more surprising, when asked about it, she said, "that's EASY!" ====:-O

Fast Forward to more recent times - there is a pattern for Pedicure Socks on, and I really, really wanted to make them. I decided that it just could not be rocket science to knit on three needles, and so I took a trip to My Sister's Knits, and came home with a set of #7 double points and some Mission Falls 1824 Wool, in the Macaw color (and two balls of Lana Grossa Inca in case by some miracle I was actually able to knit on three needles). It all sat for awhile, but I was home sick for a week (a whole week), and after having watched the entire second season of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, I decided it was time to tackle knitting on three needles for real. It wasn't my best effort, but I finished them, and heard from Linda shortly thereafter about knitting socks on two circulars.

Thank you, Cat Bordhi!!! Her book, Socks Soar on Two Circular Needles led to my becoming a sock knitter for real.

I cast on my very first pair of socks on two circulars and haven't looked back :-D Here they are - already worn a number of times. Finished in March 2007, on the Isle of Iona, in Scotland, made from Lana Grossa Mielenweit, Inca #1524.

I have plans to revisit the Pedicure Socks - this time on two circulars. I also have plans to revisit the shawl-collar wrap sweater at some point, but for now, I think the original deserves a wash on "delicate" and a quick go-round in the tumble dryer. :-)

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