Friday, October 26, 2012

Feeling low. An early attack of Seasonal Affective Disorder? I don't like the label -- but it does seem awfully dark, and there’s a long way to go before the solstice. I’m not really enjoying knitting the Wingspan (although that’s the least of it). It’s a terrific pattern. The KF sock yarn I’m using is an old friend. I’m very pleased with the way it’s looking. But no relish.

Still, it won’t take long. I have embarked on the fourth triangle of eight. There’s that lovely package winging its way towards me from Jimmy Bean at this very moment, although I won’t start Ed’s Gardening Sweater until I have seen him in London (Nov. 17, for that) and measured an old favourite and discussed necklines. There may be a bit of a gap between Wingspan-completion and Nov. 17 but there are plenty of things to plug that with.

If gloom is specific, it’s the noticing of an increasing number of little markers that chart our decline. We are lucky that we can hear each other without shouting, and that we still have a good many of our marbles. I can do the Telegraph’s “tough” Su-Doku’s (although almost never the “diabolical” ones printed on Fridays), and my husband, in WS Gilbert’s words, can tell undoubted Raphaels from Gerard Dous and Zoffanys.

Let’s not worry.

Kathleen (comment on recent post), the book I’ve been enthusing about, “A Legacy of Shetland Lace”, is published by the Shetland Times (scroll down a few after following that link). I also bought a book of Fair Isle Knitting Patterns from them – this was the activity that got me into trouble with my credit card company last week – and wouldn’t, on the whole, recommend that one.

There’s almost no text. What there is, is not uninteresting on the mathematics of selecting patterns. Obviously, the pattern repeats must fit in to the overall number of stitches, but there’s a bit more to it than that. But if you’ve got Starmore or Mucklestone, I wonder if you really need this one.

Embarrassingly, I don’t even know where I’ve put it.

If I ever knit an all-over Fair Isle again, it might be fun to have small patterns, 5 or 7 rows, all different, in darkish shades. And I’ve still to try the Prince of Wales joke – an all-over two-colour pattern which plays on the fact that Fair Isle stitches are virtually square, and so can seem to flow down the sleeves uninterrupted while in fact the knitter rotates the pattern by 90 degrees. Or something like that. 


  1. I'm in awe of your marbles! The way you cope with modern technology is very inspiring and your enthusiasms in so many areas of life would put many a younger person to shame. You've had a lot of setbacks this year (the ceiling etc.) and this is bound to have taken its toll.

    I'm not looking forward to the shorter daylight hours either.

  2. the picture of the fair isle sweater at the end of your post is really an eye opener - look at that neck line - for a man's sweater!

  3. Thank you for the link, Jean. I wonder why this book isn't in Ravelry's database. It looks (and sounds from your description) like a treasure.

    Along with Hat I am very impressed with your and your husband's marbles. And I hope I will be as lucid and engaging as I make my way through the world.

    I'm pretty sure Meg Swansen has talked about the 90-degree thing with certain types of Fair Isle patterns. I do have Starmore, Feitelson, and MacGregor, with Mary Jane's book on my wish list for when I dive into Fair Isle designs. Right now my focus is more on cables and lace.