Friday, February 25, 2005

Can't keep a good woman down - photos added to yesterday's message

First of all, I'd like to thank my namesake Anne in Denmark - she was my secret friend on this first round. I hope I didn't seem unthankful even though I hadn't mentioned the parcel earlier... it's just that I got it only today. And what a lovely surprise it was: Stripe of Hjertegarn, in soft tones of mainly grey and brown (funnily enough, my camera brings out the blues). I think it's this one.

Oh, and I just had to laugh out loud when I read the message she had written: "I'm almost sorry to send you more yarn, my God, you have a lot." Yep, I have a lot but didn't have any Hjertegarn yet and I was really happy to receive this. And it might just become a Clapotis, since it seems that I've lost the yarn I had bought for that purpose. It should be somewhere in this flat... haven't just seen it since October... but I think that Stripe is even better for Clapotis. Mange tak!

A week ago there was a local knitting meeting here in Brussels, and I even went there this time. Met a bunch of nice, talented and inspiring knitters, some of whom had joined the group after hearing about it on the tv. So, this time there wasn't a tv crew present, "just" one lady doing an interview on the radio. --And our group "mom" Stéphanie held a crash course of spinning on the spindle - a very interesting but a bit scary activity. I took some photos of the group, but unfortunately most of them are rather blurred. People were knitting so fast. In fact, I thought I'd make a cavalcade of pictures and name it like "European knitting styles". Or "Busy hands". It was truly fascinating to see how many different ways there were to hold the needles.

Judging by the items on the table we might be somewhere more exotic than Brussels.

That meeting took place on Wednesday. On Thursday I had to pack since I flew back home to Finland directly after work on Friday. Well, "packing" was too ambitious a word, I just threw everything into a carrier bag, hoping that it wouldn't be too heavy. Oh, and on Friday another knitting meeting: Jorun from Luxembourg had a meeting in Brussels, so we met over lunch - it was nice to see her but I think neither of us was showing our best sides. She had the mother of all flus, and I was rather preoccupied with my private problems - let's just hope that next we meet, things look a bit brighter.

The weekend was nothing but misery, so on Monday I allowed myself a small-scale shopping spree. Bought some beads, went hunting for any green yarn as long as it was feltable (didn't find too much of it, or the shop owners looked horrified when I grabbed a ball of green mohair and asked whether it was feltable. Err... we don't know... never occurred to us to even try.) Bought a couple of books and magazines - and left the magazines at home when returning to Belgium. In one of them they were showing the basics of Tunisian crocheting which was discussed on a Finnish forum a while ago. If you should have access to one of Burda's basic crochet booklets, Tunisian crochet is taught there rather well. And I managed to find those long hooks at three different shops, so go on, have a go at that technique as well! Oh, and two weeks ago I had ordered some extra long knitting needles at Taito-Shop, the local crafts center. I admit that my wish was rather vague: "as long needles as you can find, and as small/thin as possible". The lady who wrote down this order did understand me, but she wasn't responsible for making the order. And the person who was, didn't understand it, so she decided to ignore it. Result: I had no needles whatsoever waiting for me. Oh well. Next time, then.

And the books? First of all, I bought another copy of Bill Bryson's "A short history of nearly everything". I have recommended it earlier, and repeat everything I've said about it. My copy has been through a couple of adventures, dozens of hours on the subway, and all this shows. I thought I'd submit it to bookcrossing, so needed another copy for myself. And then there was a cheap book on Egyptian gods, which I should finish before next weekend... what a stressful life.

Tuesday was dedicated for staying at home, doing laundry and untangling an unruly lilac yarn that has been nothing but a mess for months. Finished that on Tuesday evening plus took some photos of my local stash. That was so horrible that I just couldn't bring myself to finishing it. I had forgotten about half of this amount.

And you really thought there were in-line skates inside?

Speechless. Again.

Does it get any yuckier than this?

That'll be the day...when this is finished.

Spot two pairs of handbag handles here.

An overall for a fat little boy.. who might be in the Army by the time this is finally finished.

On Wednesday there was another knitting meeting, this time in Tampere. Seven knitters gathered there, and books, projects and yarn went flying throug the air. Also met Johanna who is considering a trip to the yarn fair in Cologne - highly recommended, again! and Kirsi, another force-felting person.

Two frantic persons diving into a plastic bag

Today is Thursday. So, after a week's absence I returned to Belgium - woke up at 4.45 am this morning, took the morning flight to Brussels. There was a parcel waiting for me at the doorstep, and another at the post office. As mentioned earlier, yarn from a secret Nordic friend, and two old issues of Vogue Knitting, won at an Ebay auction. Some lovely timeless patterns, especially a "musical" afghan - again, having a photo of it wouldn't hurt. -Went shopping, changed the sheets, unpacked my bag and picked up a friend at the airport. Tomorrow I'll go back to work, and the weekend is fully booked, too.

And why all this rambling? Well, I know this wasn't an ordinary week but I'm still amazed how little time I've got for knitting. If it wasn't for knitting on the plane, there wouldn't be practically anything to mention. In the Brussels meeting I had a scarf project which was finished on the way home (2 hours at the café, then about an hour on the tram + bus). On the way to Finland: about 20 cm of a sock; really thin yarn + needles. In Finland: organising old yarn, buying some new yarn, then re-organising everything. It's an endless task. Oh, and my sister told me a sock heel technique she uses: the heel is knitted separately and as the last piece of the socks. If and when the heel is the first part to be worn, it's easy to unravel just that part and re-knit it. She didn't have any written instructions but she described the procedure and I made my own version of it. Doesn't look bad. One sock is finished, another progressed a bit when waiting for my guest at the airport.

First we leave a great big gaping hole.

Heelwork. Needs to be modified a bit.

I want more knitting time!


Stephanie said...

The afterthought heel! It is a technique i may be using one of these days, it seems very good when wanting to replace it. But i like so much the fitting of the simple, staight, square, that i may stick to it now, though i've been doing short-row ones for a awhile...
so many knitting buddies! lucky you! And lucky us ;-)

Kathleen in Germany said...

Hi there
Just found your blog today - think it's great!
I read your entry on the Knitters in Europe WebRing website and it totally cracked me up :)

AnneV said...

Stephanie: Yep. This heel technique doesn't save anyone's time, I can assure you. I've used the short-row technique only once, and my sister stole the evidence. I think the socks were among the top-three I've ever finished but my sister was freezing when she visited Finland, so I thought she really needed them.

And Kathleen: nice to see you here, hope you find something interesting. I'll pay a longer visit to your blog later this week. See ya!

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