Search

Stitch Shape and Bristol Fashion

Crafting in the West Country

Tag

fair isle

Fearless Knitting!

First off, apologies for not posting last week, everything’s a bit mad at the moment. I’m writing this whilst perched on a stool and I have never wished for something to support my back more than I am now. Also, no pictures this week because the vast majority of my knitting is currently in storage. This post will be revised when the time is right. Anyway, this week I’m back in action and writing about being fearless.

When I first started knitting I’d say I was pretty fearless in my approach. I never saw a technique as something scary, so much as something to try out, and I think this approach is pretty good, but the longer I’ve used it, the more I’ve put rules in place to make the process balanced.

Firstly, know what you’re trying to make. The second thing I ever knitted was cabled arm warmers. I was just following a pattern pretty blindly and only at the end did I understand how the instructions I was following related to what I was actually making. It was actually a fun way to go with a massive learning curve (I hadn’t even purled before) but I wouldn’t recommend trying it often. My mum bought me the kit, it could easily never have been made at all. If anything would have helped me, it would have been knowing which bit of the instruction related to what outcome. I didn’t even know the word cable.

Budget according to your confidence level. If you want to have a go at a technique and create a huge, show stopping object out of that super expensive yarn you’ve had your eye on for ages, work out the technique on a smaller test item first. Last year my birthday present from mama sheep was the yarn to create an object of my choosing. I’d had to Totoro adaptation of Paper Dolls ear marked for a while, and while I’m not disappointed with it, I really should have researched fair isle and maybe done a few tests before jumping into such a large and expensive piece.

Recognize your skill level and challenge yourself accordingly. Never tried intersia or increases before? Sure you can try them both at once so long as at least one of them is used in a simple form. In general I would recommend just trying one new thing at a time, but if a second technique you haven’t tried is used in small quantities or in entirely separate rows to the one you’re really excited about, why not give them both a go at once?

Know if you’re in the mood and have the patience. I often have a couple of different projects on the go at once and which one I’ll work on will depend on how much concentration I want to give my knitting. There are projects were you can be mostly focused on the TV, projects where you’re half watching the TV and projects where the TV might as well not be on at all.

Well, see you next week. Promise this time.

Advertisements

A Family Affair

Both my mother and grandmother were knitters My mum stopped because it now gives her RSI and Nana is legally blind. Here, I look at some of their creations we have stashed around the house! (Please excuse the excessive number of selfies. I don’t have a mannequin to model them on.)

Mark Kent_0011
Couldn’t cut Papa Sheep out, just because of his facial expression!

First up we have this amazing batwing creation of my mums! All of her knits on this list are from the 1980s, so why not start with the most 80s of them all?

IMG_0128
Na na na na na na na na BATWING!

She seemed to have been very keen on these kinds of cream colours around then. It was the first thing she knitted on big needles. She got the pattern free in a magazine, but doesn’t remember much more because the 80s was so long ago.

IMG_0132
I know my face looks unimpressed, but I actually love it!

Next up, we have this rockin’ red creation, once again from mama sheep. She actually gave me this one a few years ago, and many people comment on how well it suits me. It’s a little moth eaten, but will probably be quite wearable once I get around to giving it a bit of TLC.

IMG_0143
Close up of yoke

I remember my mum telling me about this independently of showing me. She told me that it was so dull to knit the body, and the feature was the lace yoke.

IMG_0131
Disclaimer, me modeling, not grandpa.

This is my absolute favorite on this list. Once again it needs a little TLC, but is also the most striking and has the most interesting story behind it. Sadly, it is the only creation by Nana Sheep on this list, but I will endeavor to find more of her creations to showcase next time I visit.

IMG_0145
Check out that fair isle!

She made it in the 1950s for my granddad. It was a post war country and resources were scarce. There are elements where the colours change because she ran out of wool and couldn’t source the same shade precisely. It’s amazing, I love it and I wish it didn’t bunch weirdly on me where it was designed for a mans chest.

Images_0002
I remember Papa Sheep wearing this when I was little and thinking that it was made by sewing lots of squares together.

Another of Mama Sheep’s creations next, made for Papa Sheep. She made it around the time they got married, and from what I gather it was a bit of a dare. He didn’t quite believe she could create such a master piece. Having discovered the pattern book while going through a pile of crafting literature, I decided to make myself the same jumper in different colours. One of my great unfinished projects. (To be fair, I put the pattern away and couldn’t find it again for 6 months.)

IMG_0133
I feel some Back to the Future reference may have worked here.

Finally, we have another gifted to me by my mother. It’s just so 1980s, especially the sleeves. It looks much better once it’s on then you think it will and I know she was disappointed with the neck line, but I reckon I can rock it.

IMG_0142
The buttons on the back are super sweet.

She thinks it was made from a thermal wool, not sure how that works with lace knitting, but hey ho.

There is so much more ‘archived’, I’m I’ll post more.

Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑