I remember the first time I ever saw Zauberball yarn at The Wool Inn - a gorgeous humming little yarn shop at the end of an arcade in Penrith, the thriving regional citytropolis at the foot of the Blue Mountains. The Wool Inn never seems to have a quiet moment. Perhaps it does, but I've never personally witnessed it. Anyone who thinks knitting is a dying art is, well, um, wrong. I picked up balls in several colourways, fondled them lovlingly, weighed them up; will I go crazy rainbow, or rainforest floor, or ... Cranberry! Yes! It is a 4-ply sock yarn and the perfect choice for the reddest girl in my life (apart from me).
I love these yarns where the colour changes slowly from one grade to another. It's like going on a holiday, or a long car journey to the seaside, but the scenery outside the passenger window is interesting and constantly changing. This yarn blended from blood red to pillarbox red to a sort of watermelon colour and then into this deep, deep cranberry and then suddenly back again. I didn't bother trying to make the two socks matchy-matchy, just wasn't in the mood to make them seem in any way conventional. I love the disjunct. The fact that they go together, but they're not quite the same.
Sock number one was an absolute breeze, much of it actually knitted whilst sitting as a passenger in the car. It makes me a good listener. The driver can talk to me, we can carry on a conversation, spend much coveted "quality time" together, and yet my fingers can still work their magic, and stitch by stitch churn out a woolly piece of work. Except for the turning of heels and the decreasing of toes. I need peace and quiet for those bits. Keeping track of numbers is really not part of my skill set and sadly I have what I consider to be a one megabite memory. Sock number one was a complete success.
And sock number two was going swimmingly well, until I was interrupted half way through the crucial decrease of toe. Oh my goodness, absolute disaster. I lost the plot, tried "reverse knitting" or "tinking" as a friend recently called it (knit backwards). But I just couldn't work it out. Was I on a knit row, was I on a decrease row, had I decreased one too many, or missed one altogether? Brain on overload. All too hard. So drastic measure required, "tink" right back to the start of the decrease and just start that bit all over again. It really didn't take that long, but quite interestingly, I was interrupted once again at the very point at which I had originally lost the plot. What are the chances of that happening, really?! But I had been extra careful this time, and there was no confusion with my record-keeping through the decrease-round-/knit-round/decrease-round process, and so I got to the end without mishap. Phew!
And then grafting that final toe. This is always my favourite bit. I love that seamless fabric that results from the magical Kitchener stitch. Then just the tying in of ends and tidying up and pulling into shape. Happiness time.
And here they are, hanging with the Christmas baubles. And that is because they are a birthday present (late) for one of my darlings whose birthday happens to also fall on Christmas Day. But they are a birthday present. I sometimes think it must be hard to have a birthday on Christmas Day. It's so easy for people to make it a melange present, Christmas-Birthday-Christmas present all rolled into one. One present. One celebration. This present is late, just because I had toe issues, and everything became so busy pre-Christmas that I couldn't get it all done in time. So am planning to meet up shortly with my Lucy-girl for tea and scandal and the ceremonial handing over of a gift; each and every stitch infused with loving thoughts of the person who has loved me for a lifetime. Happy Birthday my darling girl.