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Monday, January 21, 2013

Cold weather = sock knitting

It's been cold here for the last few days. Yesterday it dropped to below zero here which was similar to the temperatures we got in Norway. Felt so much colder here though. I'm sure that's because of the damp conditions here plus the wind. We've struggled to keep the house warm too. We had the log fire burning in the lounge for most of the weekend which made for cozy knitting and spinning. 

Thank you to all those who commented on the previous post. I still haven't decided what to spin next but I'm closer to a decision. I've done quite a bit of spinning this weekend but I've still not finished my current batch. I'm hoping another couple of hours will do it though.

This cold weather makes me want to knit socks. I used to be pretty addicted to sock knitting but for the last few years my sock knitting efforts have been pretty pathetic. I've been kind of busy with other things though. Last year I knitted a pair of socks from the toe up. They're finished but I ran out of yarn to make the second sock as long as the first sock so I'm in the middle of ripping back the first sock a bit to make them the same length. It's been sitting next to my knitting chair for months now and I really ought to just get it done. Anyway, when I finished those socks I thought they would look good as top down socks too.
I pulled out a skein of YarnAddict Merino Plus in a pretty pinky/lilac colour and cast on. That was last year some time. Earlier this week I pulled these socks out again. Above is the progress i made on these socks last year. Last week I got a set of Knit Pro Karbonz double pointed needles (dpns) which I was keen to try out. Instead of casting on for a new pair of socks, which was very tempting, I swapped my favourite Signature dpns (the red ones in the pic above) for the Karbonz. This is the progress I've made in the last week. I got kind of distracted when i found my missing Botany shawl which I finished last night. It's still blocking.
I like the Karbonz dpns. They're very light with metal tips. The tips are not as sharp as the Signature dpns but the Karbonz are slightly lighter. In fact they're incredibly light. The black material is less slippery than the red metal needles and slightly flexible. They're also warm to the touch and feel more like wooden needles. So if you tend to break wooden or bamboo needles the Karbonz are a good alternative. Also if you like metal tips but find metal needle a bit cold and too rigid, I'd give the Karbonz a try. I'd imagine most Knit Pro stockists would stock them. 

I'm planning to put some more effort into those socks this week. I doubt I'll finish them in time to wear them during out current cold spell. Do you fancy learning to knit socks? Sock knitting is very addictive. Tomorrow i'm teaching a Basic Socks workshop at Spin A Yarn in Bovey Tracey, Devon. You will learn to knit socks from the top down using double pointed needles. A lot of people are frightened of dpns but once you've had a little bit of practice they're not as scary as you think. In the class you'll learn how to turn the heel and graft the toe. We'll practice in the class by knitting a little mini sock which covers all the techniques you need to know to knit a complete adult sock. You'll also get a basic sock pattern to take home with you. 

Want to join me? There are still a few spaces available. So contact Spin A Yarn now to book your space! I'm teaching other sock knitting classes later this spring too. See my list of classes for details.

Last week and over the weekend much of the UK had snow. We had none at all in Liskeard but we could see snow on Caradon Hill up on Bodmin Moor. We can see Caradon Hill from the front of our house so yesterday we drove up there to take Sam for a walk. And we did find snow. Not much but it had attacted quite a few families. There were several families and kids sledging down the hill. Several cars drove up to the top of the hill. People got out, took photos then drove back down. We were good and parked at the bottom and walked up the hill instead. 

We saw some wild ponies. I bet they're not enjoying the snow.
 This mare was with her foal from last year and looked pregnant. They both looked very happy. They were grazing right next to the road and there were more ponies grazing nearby.
I used to live in this area when I first moved here and it's a beautiful moorland area and we're dreaming of moving out of our town to the village at the bottom of Caradon Hill, Minions, but I think we'll stay in town utnil the girls have finished school as we're only 10 mins walk from their school.
There are some beautiful views from the hill. My camera died about halfway up the hill as I've not charged it since before we went to Norway so i didn't get any pics from the top.

 It's not a lot of snow, not that impressive to a Norwegian, but it's quite a lot for Cornwall.
Roads were a bit icy but not too bad. It was only icy going up to the top of the Caradon Hill. Roads leading up to the moors were fine. We didn't walk very far. My back was bad and I was in a lot of pain and the wind was making it feel really cold. I was warm enough but it was stinging my face quite a bit.
If you live in the UK, did you get any snow this last week? 

Tomorrow I'm going to share some pics from a new book I've contributed too. I saw the pics last night and a pdf preview of the book and i can't wait to share it with you so come back tomorrow for that. Or if you follow me on Twitter, look out for links from me today.

1 comment:

Marikje said...

This yarn has very nice colour :) i like purple too