Tuesday, 2 September 2014

As Temperatures Rise

Is it really six weeks since my last blog post? SIX weeks???  I've been away, well that's usually no excuse, generally when I'm going to be on holiday I plan ahead  and I blog... something, but this time I failed. Plenty of reasons but no excuses, it's just that it was so hot, 32deg in the shade and, well, I've done azure sea, blue blue skies, cats and goats blogs before and I was just so relaxed under the shade of an olive tree with a frappe cappuccino in my hand. Get the picture?

Or maybe a greek coffee

Seriously, though, do any of you manage to knit when temperatures soar above 30? Please tell all in the comments, do you still knit, and what do you knit?  I know some of you lovely readers actually live in places (parts of the USA and Australia come to mind) where half the year it is hotter, and even more humid, than the Greek Ionian Islands in August for weeks at a time.  So what do you do? Knit or not? And what fibre?

I did think - a bit- about what I would take with me knitting-wise and completed one item, the Hedy Lamar fingerless gloves. They are from my friend Kathleen's lovely new second volume of her series Silver Screen Knits (SSK, get it? Clever huh?)   I may have already mentioned that Kathleen and I did a mini yarn swap back in May/June time.  We were having lunch and she admired my Mind-The-Gap socks and mentioned that the yarn from Trailing Clouds was like gold dust.  Well I had a second skein so we decided to do a swap and as I wanted to make Hedy's gloves Kathleen would dig in her stash and send me something suitable in green.  Kathleen was not sure she had the right weight, the pattern calls for something between lace and sock weight, so she sent me all this!

I chose the Pagoda Lace, 55% silk/45% cashmere from Neighborhood Fiber Co (the colour way is Anacostia) because the fibre mix of cashmere and silk is sooooo gorgeous. And because it is a true lace weight I set about swatching to get something like the right size and shape.  The gloves are in a lovely stitch pattern that looks a little like fishnet but the shaping is very simple.  I calculated I needed about 30% more stitches to get the right size but would leave the shaping pretty much the same as being slightly wider at the wrist would be fine for me and length would not be a problem as I could try on as I knitted

I really could only knit in the early morning. Not a problem as I love getting up early on holiday, I love the peace and quiet of the time before everyone else gets up. And by that, I include the chirruping insects that began as the thermometer on the wall reached 23. 

After about 10 my hands on the needles got sticky and the yarn in danger of fuzzing and it was time for my usual breakfast  of yoghurt, nuts, fruit and honey and to take up my position under a tree or beside the pool with a book.

Or just doze in the sun

Slow progress, but at the end of week three they were done and I began to keep an eye out for a suitable place for their photo shoot.  By this time we had moved islands and discovered the best cocktail bar on Corfu, at the top of the old Venetian fort overlooking the ancient town. And in my hand? Well it had to be something bubbly for Hedy's sake.

What shall I do with the rest of the yarn?  Well, tell us all a little about your summer knitting in the comments section and in a week I will select a winner, using a random number generator, for one of the skeins. I'll name the winner in the next blog post (I'm happy to post overseas)

And watch this space, Kathleen and I were planning a linked pair of blog posts about now but she is a little busy at the moment as William Richard  made a slightly early appearance  right at the end of August, weighing in at a little over 7lb, but when Kathleen is back blogging there will be lots more chat about yarn swapping, sock knitting and perhaps another giveaway!



Mrs Bumblebee said...

A relatively cool summer in Derby has enabled me to knit 2 jumpers over the last 4 weeks. A hooded sweatshirt in Sirdar Snowdrops and a lovely soft pullover in Sirdar Silverspun. No photos I'm afraid until the pregnancy is over but hoping to get lots of wear out of them this winter. Meanwhile I'm about to cast on a slouchy hat for this winter in some stash yarn - Garn Yarn - Tiger Sequins. Getting as much knitting complete before a new baby and house move take over!

Jennifer said...

Hi Christine, nice to see you again. It looks like you had a wonderful holiday. The setting is so pretty. I live in a hot place and I do crochet all summer, but usually smaller items that don't grow down onto my body. I save those for fall and winter; I'm getting ready to start a new blanket in the next few weeks. Your mitts are beautiful, I love the colors in that yarn.

Jennifer said...

Catherine, I am so sorry I called you Christine in my other comment. I don't know why I did that, I think I was on typing auto-pilot. :) Sorry again.

debbie1608 said...

Well over the summer I have mainly been knitting socks. I seem to be addicted to sock knitting at the moment. I've still got a summer scarf to finish but it seems I've taken too long and summer is nearly over!

Your holiday looks wonderful, I can't think of anything better than knitting overlooking a swimming pool, well maybe knitting on the beach overlooking the ocean would be hard to beat!

Manda-Jane said...

Is that a Margaret Drabble book you were reading? You said you'd read a few books on holiday and it certainly looks like you had a great relaxing one, the photographs are brilliant. Love the kittie on the flip flops!

As far as summer knitting is considered I actually knit more for some strange reason. I think the lighter nights keep me up knitting later.......

Your yarn acquisition is beautiful and the gloves too. X

Cathie Aldridge said...

I finally found a project for some Rowan Fine Lace, I've had it ages and I've even started several other projects in it but not felt happy with it. It's a shawl called Feathers Fichu it's been slow but I think it's past the frogging stage.
Loved seeing that your pretty tulip dress got some sun :)

sarah woakes said...

I picked up some needles this summer after a 20 year abstinence, and have so far made 4 jumpers, 1 hat, a pair of socks and 1 fingerless glove! I just started a cardi for me, in time for winter (I hope!).

Elly said...

I can recommend an air conditioning unit and aluminium knitting needles for keeping hands cool. Love your photos, looks like a wonderful way to spend summer.

Elly said...

Forgot to say, I've been knitting jumpers, socks and blankets. Looking forward to cooler weather to put my new items to use!

Adaliza said...

I love that photo, holding the glass of fizz - brilliant! I haven't been knitting this summer, nor crocheting. I'm just totally obsessed by patchwork even though there's a lace weight shawlette on my needles that I'll finish eventually! Glad you've had a great summer and good holiday. We've just returned from a hot, hot week in Cornwall - utter bliss!