Saturday, May 14, 2016

Sunshine Days.....

Hello ... thanks for dropping by.

I thought I'd just let you know that my latest shawl design is now in my Ravelry Store. It's called the Sunshine Shawl and I have to say, is one of my favourites.....

I saw the yarn in my local yarn shop and immediately knew that it had to be a shawl. And what other name could it have had but Sunshine? I know that not many people can wear such a bright colour but thrown over a dark Winter coat in the middle of January and I'm certain it would brighten up the gloomiest of days!

It's made in 4ply/fingering weight yarn on 4mm needles so it grows really quickly and once the very easy lace pattern has been done a few times, it's really simple to remember.

So there she is in all her glory and I really hope you love her as much as I do.....

Til soon.

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Sock Addiction.....

What is it with sock knitting? Just when you think you’ve made your last pair and maybe you’ll try something else …. you find yourself casting on some more!

My sock knitting story began after I'd been happily knitting sweaters, hats and blankets for about 35 years. I'd never dreamed of knitting socks. I'd never wanted, desired or even thought about knitting socks. I was happy .... or so I thought. Wandering around the internet (as you do) I stumbled across the blog of a lady who knitted socks. Then I discovered another one. And then another and then ..... well, you get the picture. Here was this community of sock knitters that I'd never known about and it amazed me. Why would you knit socks? Socks are cheap. At my local clothing store I can get a pack of 6 pairs for the price of a cappuccino and a muffin! So why knit them? I decided to investigate.

I started reading the blogs and looking at patterns. Then I discovered all the different sock yarns and indie dyers. I started to feel a prickle of excitement. Perhaps I was getting it. Perhaps finally I was beginning to see what all the fuss was about. I decided to give it a go. I downloaded a free pattern, bought some cheap acrylic 4 ply and cast on.

Now I realise that "cheap acrylic 4 ply" was probably not the way to go but I didn't want to invest in beautiful yarn only to find I couldn't get my head around a sock pattern or even worse, I could manage the pattern but discovered I just hated knitting socks! To cut a long story short, that first pair of socks were not great and I have no shame in telling you that they ended up in the bin just a few months later. But somewhere along the way I had caught the "sock knitting" bug! Don't ask me when or even how, but by the time I had cast off and pulled those scratchy, stretchy devils onto my feet, I was well and truly hooked!

Since then sock knitting has become as familiar to me as brushing my teeth and there are almost always a pair on my needles. You'll be pleased to know that I no longer use acrylic yarn and as a result I have a drawer full of warm, soft and snuggly handmade socks that don't scratch or stretch!

More recently I've discovered the delights of Christine Perry and her lovely blog Winwickmum. She is one of those amazing ladies who share her knowledge and passion of knitting (and in particular, knitting socks) through her book Super Socks. She has taught and encouraged hundreds of people around the World to give sock knitting a go so if you're looking for a great place to learn about sock knitting, Christine Perry's blog and her Facebook page should be your first port of call.

I think everyone should knit at least one pair of socks in their lifetime just for the experience and having made a pair, I would challenge anyone not to love wearing handmade socks. Of course, there is Second Sock Syndrome (SSS) from which all knitters suffer, but it's a small price to pay for the joy of finally having a full and complete pair of socks either to wear yourself or to gift to someone else. That feeling of accomplishment, fulfilment and (yes, dare I say it) total and utter pride that "I made those"!!! There's nothing quite like it. Perhaps that's why once you start knitting socks, you just can't stop!

As for patterns, well there are literally thousands out there but here are a few of my "go to's" .....

So I don't know about you but I'm off to do a bit of sock knitting.
I have no idea how many pairs I've made to date but I do know this - I haven’t yet made my last pair and to be honest, I’m not sure I ever will……

Til soon.