At the moment I have three knitting projects and one crochet project on the go, which is pretty much par for the course; I always have a pair of socks on the go, for knitting on the bus and out and about, and a garment of some kind, and a shawl, and some kind of more-in-hope-than-expectation crochet project (I do enjoy crochet, but have yet to manage to finish anything bigger than granny squares).
Anyway, in order of age:
Tropical Breeze shawl, in Wendy Happy (100% bamboo sock yarn). Given that I’m pretty much a novice crocheter I was pleasantly surprised how easy the pattern was to follow. In fact, it was so easy that I’m actually finding it quite dull going and currently looking at it and thinking ‘I have how many repeats to go?’. I suspect this is because I still have to concentrate quite hard on crochet and concentrating on something not very interesting is a recipe for boredom. Also, I can’t work out how to hold the shawl while I’m working on it; if I have one hand holding the hook and the other one holding the yarn and pinching just below the stitch I’m working into, what happens to the rest of the already-crocheted fabric? I find that when I’m crocheting the longer chains the work has a tendency to spin round, which is very annoying when I have to keep straightening it out before carrying on. How do other crocheters manage? I know lots of people who crochet and don’t have three hands, so it must be possible…what am I missing?
Lyttelton, but Kate Davies, in a cotton/tencel 4-ply from The Yarn Yard. I’m really enjoying knitting this; the stitch pattern is easy to memorise and it’s surprisingly quick to knit, although the lack of stretch in the yarn and the fact that I had to go down to 2.5mm needles to get gauge means it is a bit tough on my hands sometimes. I’m also having problems with loose purl stitches in the ribbing, and had a minor fit of ‘argh, I have disastrously loose purling!’ recently before deciding that while my purling is slightly looser than my knitting it’s really not into the realms of tension disasters and that the issue in Lyttelton is just that it’s very hard to get a neat edge on a purl column which is followed by k2tog yo, especially in a slippery yarn. Anyway, I’m pretty happy with the project overall, though starting to worry that it won’t be finished in time for me to wear it this summer (then again, I’m sure it would look good over a long-sleeved t-shirt in autumn too).
My bus knitting: Wonderland Socks by Alice Bell, the second of two pairs I’m knitting as a commission for a friend.
The next in my A-Z of shawls, Daybreak by Stephen West in two colours of Yarn Yard Clan, one variegated and a toning semi-solid. I’m not entirely sure about this; I bought the two skeins ages ago and had always intended them for a Daybreak, but I’m wondering whether they’re really too similar and the stripes in the semi-solid aren’t showing up properly. What do you think? Would more contrast be better?