Wednesday, December 03, 2008

I wish I had a camera

If I had the foresight, I would have set my camera up on a timer last night, so you could all see the fun I had.

I bought a new ballwinder off TradeMe on Friday and it arrived yesterday morning! (Amazing quick service!) Of course, I couldn't wait to try it out, so I pulled out the skeins I have of Cascade 220 that i'm using for my Talia, and attempted to wind them into balls. However, as I am yet to purchase a swift to hold the skein, I had to hunt around to try and find something to use.... the clothes airer worked for a while, but sadly after a few turns of the handle the skein fell off into a heap on the floor (and no, it wasn't a case of simply picking it back up, the rest of the night was spent untangling the stupid thing - a great lesson in patience, and I even managed without a glass of wine!) so I had to search for other means. I still had other skeins to do, so in the end I thought, hey, i'm sure I can do this myself! Little did I know...

So, if you've tried it, i'm sure you can picture what it looked like, but for those who haven't, i'll give you a clue. The way to do it is to hold the skein between your hands, so that it can be pulled easily without tangling (as I learnt, it also pays to take off ALL jewellry so that it doesn't catch!). So if your hands are busy holding the skein, how do you turn the handle of the ball winder? Why, with your feet of course! Here's where a picture would have come in handy, as i'm sure I looked rediculous, with one foot up in the air turning the handle to wind the ball, and my hands holding on to the skein while attempting to also control the tension as the ball was wound so it didn't come out all loose. To top it off, I couldn't wind that fast because as it turns out my feet are rather unco at that kind of thing, as they should be, and I had to keep swapping legs because my muscles were getting sore. Who needs the gym, just trying winding a skein like this, its a much better workout!

Luckily it seemed to work ok, until it got down to the last few strands when it started tangling, and I had to untangle it as it went. As for the giant tangled mess, I was successful it getting it all untangled, and it only took around an hour to do (which I think is quite good!) and I was able to wind that into a ball just from the pile on the floor without any more major tangles. Perhaps that's the key, to lie it all spread out on the floor and pick it up like that! Although the hand-foot thing was quite fun :) If you don't have a swift and have figured out a simple way of doing it please let me know!

Before all these ball-winding adventures, I went to the local 'knitting circle' on Monday night, and although there were only three of us there, I got lots done. Here are some pics I took before I went (sorry for the quality, I only had the camera on my phone):
This is the hooded scarf for Chastity - its done in Lion Brand Wool-ease and the colour is Dark Rose Heather, its really pretty. Its a simple lace pattern for one row, then one row of purl and two of knit, so it doesn't take too long to get through one pattern repeat. Since this photo was taken i've done another 10 or so repeats, so its quite a bit longer. The hood part is just straight garter stitch for a few inches, and then the pattern back down the other side.

These are some of the blocks i've got so far for the Casa Kiwi blankets. I've got a few girls from church knitting up some more too, so I should be able to get at least one blanket done shortly. I'm thinking 16 squares for a baby blanket, and perhaps bigger ones for beds or something - I guess it depends how many squares I get. If you'd like to help out with squares, just follow the instructions on the ball band of any yarn for making a 10cm x 10cm (4" x 4") square in any pattern you like, or just plain. The yarn should be something that can easily be washed, so superwash or acrylic etc. Leave me a comment if you'd like more information, and thanks for helping!

Happy knitting :)


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