Thursday, July 20, 2006

What have we here?

Blue sky thinking

There's been a lot of this of late. And it has been very, very hot. Too hot. But today we awoke to grey skies, mist and light rain, bringing the temperature down. Unfortunately, we are being told that this will bring the humidity up, so prepare for more moaning from all us ungrateful Brits in general and this one in particular. Having said all that about the heat, I would rather, much rather, have clear blue skies to gaze at whilst enduring temperatures of around 90 F!

We had both the heat and the humidity on Saturday at the Guild Open Day. I've finally downloaded the pictures I took there, mostly useless, but this one shows what a crowd there was. Good fun, nice people.

Guild Open Day

So, what have I been doing, apart from sitting fairly comfortably in the coolest spot? I did have to venture out one day, to the dentist, although I nearly bottled out several times because of the temps. However, they did have very efficient fans in operation, and I had had the foresight to take a small freezer block with me in my handbag, so I could clutch that whilst in the steamy, unfanned waiting room. Please don't laugh at this weird action - it worked a treat. Maybe there is a fortune to be made for someone who invents devices that could be strapped strategically to the body - ankles, wrists, neck? - that would stay cold for a good long time. Much more ecologically sound than air con. A cleavage shaped one would be good, even my small block looks very bulky stuffed down there.

I have not been totally idle whilst the heatwave has progressed. Now, this is truly mad, and the DSM nearly fainted with shock when he realised that on the hottest day of the year - probably the hottest day in the UK ever - I had been finishing off the brown jacket. The heavy, wool, winter jacket. This one.


(It took me, by the way, three attempts to upload this photo to flickr,for some unknown reason. Which does of course mean that all three may appear at some point. I'm not mad. Quite.)

OK, so this is not perfect. As usual, I "designed" on the wing, which meant that I had some problems to solve at the end that could have been avoided with proper planning. I knitted rectangles for the fronts and back, starting with the orange striped bits, sewed them together and knitted the sleeves down. Now, I know most people don't like the extreme dropped shoulder effect that this style gives, but actually, I love it, find it very comfortable to wear. So I would do that again. I would do the stripes again, but work towards them. I had to do hems to deal with the wavy edge I got by starting out with the two colours. Having said that, I do like the reinforced stand-up collar that has given me, another element to repeat sometime. I was given my biggest problem by the edges. I knew they needed to have some orange about them, or the whole thing would be thrown off-balance. But having struggled a little with the welts, I couldn't see how to achieve that with the stripes. Once I had brought in the hem idea, I decided to somehow go with that, and eventually thought I would do a concealed, plain orange hem, picked up at each front edge - which is what I did, intending to stitch them in place after a good pressing. But whilst working on the other areas, I realised that the add-ons had rolled back on themselves, as stocking stitch does, in what I, at least, think is a most attractive way. So, I've just left it, and I like it. Which is what matters.

I am moderately pleased with the jacket, and uber-pleased with myself. I have battled this through to the end, and have something that I can actually wear. It is not at all a complicated knit, simple stocking stitch, not shaping. But given my track record, it is a work of art. What is more, I enjoyed doing it, both the simple work of the hands, and the mental gymnastics of the problem solving. I see another in my future.

And now - to socks. I am doing socks with the AH class next week, and need to get the examples and the notes done. I nice occupation for a grey day. Although the sun is going to return, we are told. I'm glad summer isn't over just yet!

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