Saturday, 28 April 2012

A Labour of Daughterly Love

I was going to do this in chronological order, but I actually don't remember now what my first project with reclaimed yarn was! Probably something I sent to the frog pond...

So instead I'm starting with the one I'm most proud of.

Queen Mum

These fingerless gloves were my mum's Christmas present - she didn't receive them until February, of course! But both she and I were very pleased nonetheless. She to be finally wearing them, and me to be finally not knitting them any more...

Truth be told I started and knitted most of this project with great enthusiasm, and enjoyed most of the knitting. But once I'd ripped and reknitted the wrist part of the second glove 5647 times, I was getting a bit miffed. I was more or less winging it with the pattern (using Melissa Burt's Queen of Diamonds as a base for the stitch counts and an edging pattern from Nicky Epstein's brilliant Knitting on the Edge for the cuff), and foolishly left several weeks between finishing the first glove and casting on the next without having made sufficient pattern notes, so I'd kind of forgotten what I'd done. Oops.

They came out marvellously though. This project was extra special too not just because I was making them for my mum, who is awesome (and for whom I had yet to produce a successful knitted item), but because of the yarn. It was fine (and soft!) laceweight merino unravelled from one of my dad's sweaters and hand-dyed by me (red over the original periwinkle blue) for mother's purple fixation. My dad died 18 months ago and although my parents had been divorced for 20 years, they were still friends. She was surprised at how upset she was about it, but when you take into consideration that she met him when she was 16 and spent 22 years with him, it's no surprise at all really!

I navajo plied the yarn as I knitted to create 4-ply - more on this in another post, but here's a quick link to the Lucy Neatby video I learnt from - using 2mm dpns. These were also my first 'fingers' and frankly I'm not in a hurry to do it again. Must practise picking up those stitches!

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