Wednesday, July 21, 2010

So this whole sock knitting thing

I'm quite lucky in my job as a reporter that I get to meet lots of interesting people. I'm even luckier when these interesting people share similar interests, and a couple of weeks ago I got to interview Belinda Too, a sock knitter who has just published her first knitting book.
The book, Blendy Knits Socks, makes sock knitting look relatively straight forward, and I'm willing to give it a go with the Knitch yarn (Almost Iris - I think it looks like a lightening storm - the kind that would make for superhero socks) I purchased at the book launch. Now i just need the right size circular needles to try the magic loop method. The one I was trying it on was way too short.
Buy Beninda's book here, and read my story here.
In other news, the jumper now has a sleeve! This means I'm halfway through, and I'm beginning to think about all the the stitching I'll have to do to sew it all together...

Saturday, July 10, 2010

The Front is Finished!

Aside from weaving in the ends and blocking, but I felt like I was done with this - it just felt like I couldn't do more on it for a while. I'm quite pleased with how it's come out, but I'm not getting excited yet - I'm not even half way through the entire project yet. Sleeves, here I come.

Friday, July 2, 2010

The Snoring Guy in the Coffee Shop

Last Tuesday was the inaugural meeting of a new knitting group that I'm happy to be a part of. We met in the city library cafe after work, with me being the only one who knew how to cast on and start knitting. So for me, it was a teaching experience, but it was fun to hang out with the girls who are enthusiastic about learning to knit.

But the knitting wasn't the most interesting part of the evening. The guy asleep in one of the cafe's chairs was. We could hear him as soon as we walked into the library (which I always thought were supposed to be quiet places). There he was, completely asleep and totally oblivious to library users and those trying to get in a quiet cup of coffee after work.

Each snore was different. They rumbled and echoed off the walls. We almost had to yell to each other to be heard over him. Several times staff members and people in the cafe tried to wake him - and they managed to, but he fell asleep again as soon as he was left alone.

It meant for a very memorable first meeting, and I kind of hope we see him snoring again if we make out knit nights a regular thing. I hope we do - it's nice to have people interested in stuff you like doing.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Being a Lefty

I was six when I learned to knit for the first time. I had a babysitter named Maureen, who figured out a way to teach me. She got me pink needles and baby pink yarn, and sat for hours trying to show me how to hold the needles and wrap the yarn without dropping everything.
I couldn't do it. Maureen was trying to teach me how to knit like a right-handed person. But as a six-year-old left-hander, I didn't get very far.

Maureen had to think of a new way to knit, to show me how to do it without it being too hard for a clumsy child who had to be more difficult than most. But she did it. It was totally backwards to any other knitting I've seen, transferring the yarn from the right needle to the left, and holding the yarn in my left hand. But soon after childhood boredom set in, and I found more interesting things to do.

Almost 17 years later, I wanted to learn again. Mum then took up the challenge of teaching me, followed by Youtube clips and many stitches being dropped. I didn't know the Continental Method even existed until I had got the hang of the English style, and since it took me months to get comfortable doing that, I haven't wanted to give any other methods a go just yet.

I am still quite slow, and I doubt I'll ever get very fast because my right hand is just not as good as the left. Although now I don't do everything left-handed - using scissors in my right hand is fine but don't expect me to use a can opener - I do feel that knitting is one of those things that would be so much easier if I was one of those kids forced to write the "right" way, rather than left.

Being left-handed - no one really knows what causes it, but there is a higher percentage of left-handedness in twins. There are estimates that 13 - 16% of the population favour the left hand, and it has been associated with a shortened life-span, being more susceptible to allergies and generally being clumsy. But they say that being a lefty is associated with creativity and leadership, and those are good enough for me.