Hello, thank you for dropping in, I am so pleased to find you here. School holidays began here a week ago and predictably, we have had a lot of rain! However, we did fit in a lovely trip to the Berwyn mountains on Monday and the sun was shining when we got there. I'll share it with you next week but today I'd like to share my knitting because I have made something beautiful (there, I've said it) and I am feeling SO proud of myself that I could almost burst!
Several months ago, a friend of a friend asked if I could knit a traditional white lace baby shawl for her. I had never knitted one before - I had never really knitted any lace before - but I did fancy learning how to do it and I knew someone who might help me, a wonderful knitter who has been knitting baby shawls for more than fifty years. I asked her if she would teach me and she immediately replied, "Do you want to do that circular one I've done a million times?" Of course I did! So, on her advice I bought a copy of Patons Pattern 8008, 200g of 3 ply yarn and a long 6mm circular needle and soon, I was ready to begin. Get me, working on my first commission!
I am not a particularly fast knitter and it took me
weeks months. The pattern was not difficult to follow but a considerable amount of frogging was involved as I got to grips with it and learned to relax and knit loosely while counting to six over and over again. The Best Beloved learned not to talk to me while I was counting because if I lost my place, it was his fault, obviously, and the consequences were not pretty! Once the knitting was finished, I took it round to my knitting mentor and she showed me how to sew up the seam and weave in the ends. Last of all there was the blocking which was problematic because I don't have a space in my tiny house which is big enough to stretch out a four foot circular shawl and leave it overnight without cats sitting on it! What did I do? I took it to my parents' house and pinned it out on a spare double bed, of course. I sprayed it with water, opened the window, firmly closed the door (in a catproof manner) and went back in the following morning. I gently removed the 54 pins and those lovely points stayed crisp and, well, pointy.
I delivered the shawl last week and the friend of my friend is delighted. Phew! She bought me an extravagant bouquet by way of thanks. That's not bad, is it? I got the pleasure of the knitting, the acquisition of a new skill, the satisfaction of making something beautiful AND some lovely flowers in return for my labour. And in a few months' time, a new baby will be snuggled up in a soft, gossamer shawl given by an excited grandmother.
Before that, however, another new baby will be snuggled in an identical shawl, made by its grandmother with love in every stitch, for when The Teacher saw the first one she asked me to knit one for the baby she is expecting in the autumn. One, two, three, four, five, six, yarn over, two, three, four, five, six, ...
See you soon.
Love, Mrs Tiggywinkle x