...or was it knit one, slip one purl ways, knit one, pass slip stitch over?? Oh I don't know...my head is in a bit of a muddle. You see I have decided to knit a jumper, using random balls of 8ply pure wool that I found tucked away in a cupboard; in readiness for Winter. I know, I realise the rest of Australia seems to still be in the throes of hot weather, but for us down here at the bottom of the world (Tassie) it is getting a little cool and besides, by the time I have finished my jumper, Winter will have us in it's icy stranglehold!
Why am I in a muddle, you ask? Well.......... I'm not really following a pattern....I am just going to make it up as I go along, knit by the 'seat of my pants' so to speak. I am going to refer to these oft-used knitting books that are filled from front cover to back cover with glorious stitch patterns, to mix my jumper up a bit, both in pattern and colour. These books are my knitting bible to which I have referred time and time again. Mmm......not quite sure how this will turn out. It's just as well I will only bum around this li'l ole abode, clad in this
experiment original design!! I don't suppose I should be seen in public wearing this 'coat of many colours'....the locals will really wonder about the quirky lady who lives in the house on the hill (not that they don't already).
You didn't know that I love to knit, did you?? I have been knitting for what seems forever! As a little girl, I adored going with my mum to the haberdashery, where each week she would buy a few balls of wool that she had put away, for whatever garment she was knitting. My mum was the most beautiful knitter. I remember the soothing clickety clack sound of her knitting needles. It seemed to me, that my mum whipped up cardies and jumpers in an amazingly short amount of time. Fair isle, aran, intarsia, lacey patterns, motif knitting; you name it, she knitted it. She was always knitting; wherever we went, she would whip out her needles and knit and chat. I remember that my brother and I were always garbed in beautiful hand knits. Indeed many a comment would pass between passersby and my mum about the gorgeous hand knits that we were wearing.
This cute as cute cardie is one that my mum knitted my Pip when she was a wee li'l girl!! Mother duck being followed by her wee baby ducklings, waddling across the front and back of the cardie!! This cardie was knitted 25 years ago, in Patons Bluebell, a favourite wool of my mums and was worn to death. It still looks as if it was knitted yesterday. Remember when picture knitting was the rage?? Some of you won't, but those of you who, like me, tip-toed on the earth with the woolly mammoths.....will vaguely remember!!
A baby layette that my mum knitted for my Pip's christening. Isn't it beautiful?
I learnt to knit at my mother's knee. I actually remember knitting my first jumper when I was only 10 years old. I still remember the wool. It was a beautiful blue, black and white boucle wool. I felt very grown up when I would go with my mum and ask for two or three balls that were on lay by at the haberdashery and the lady behind the counter would hand me my very own balls of wool, for my very own jumper that I was knitting. Alas, I seem to remember my jumper had a few too many holes, but I didn't care, in my childlike way I was very proud of my holey jumper. I thought it the most beautiful jumper in the whole wide world. Why, my holey jumper would have been the height of fashion these days, where dropped stitches are the next big thing.
My mum taught me so many things......how important tension is, the different ply of wool, increasing, decreasing, knitting in the round, knitting with four needles, how to read a pattern......that she preferred to always knit with 100% pure wool, something that I have always remembered. Indeed there are pure wool garments that I knitted 25 years ago and they are as beautiful today as they were way back then. Indeed, my daughter has commandeered some of them and wears them now. It seems thick cabled aran knits never go out of vogue. My mum told me to never hang hand knits on the line but to lay them flat on a towel to dry, another 'rule' that I strictly adhere to. So, so many little gems of my mum's knitting knowledge has been absorbed through my being. It's funny, isn't it, the things that we remember our mums telling us.
My mum always said that knitting is easy; that it is really just two stitches....knit and purl. Everything is a combination of these two stitches; a combination of knit and purl and the thousand ways that these two stitches can be interpreted and played with. And do you know what, knitting is easy. You can make it as simple or as complex as you want.
Now back to this woolly garment that I am going to knit. I knitted my husband this jumper a couple of seasons ago; again with no pattern; again making it up as I go.
And I must admit, that it didn't turn out half bad. Pattern after glorious pattern all combined in what adds up to be a very original jumper. Anyway my husband seems to live in it, so I am guessing that he considers it okay as well. It is made from 8ply pure wool and is wonderfully soft and warm.
So, first things first. I have knitted a lovely cable bask; much spiffier than a boring knit one, purl one rib; don't you think.
Then the fun begins. The fun of mixing different colours and patterns.
This pattern is called 'crossed bi colour stitch' knitted in two colours; incorporating knit and purl stitches and slipping stitches purl wise. Easy....it is.....really and truly!! I tell no lie!!
This pattern is a 'garter slip stitch' pattern, also using two colours.
BUT......the problem with 'making it up as you go' is that one makes little and BIG boo boos and one has to unravel some rows (sometimes many, many rows) and start again! It's just as well I am a patient gal!!
Deary, deary me!! Me thinks, this jumper is not going to be finished yesterday!! Indeed, it looks as if this original design is going to take quite a long, long time!!
So....all is well with my knitting world again; well at least for the time being. The stitches are back on the needles, the slight hiccup remedied and I can incorporate the next pattern. Mmm...I wonder what pattern I'll choose. Will it be a two colour brick pattern....or perhaps a two colour star stitch pattern.....or better still a lattice stitch pattern....oh I don't know....there are just too, too many glorious patterns from which to choose!!
So toodlepips....I'll report back with a 'blow by blow' communique, when my jumper has grown some!!
Happy Knitting !!