A Hot (Pink) Mess

Hiya! I guess you might not recognise me with this crazy tan I am sporting? My legs no longer blind people when the sun reflects off them. It’s a miracle.

This past month has taken me from London, to Edinburgh (for my graduation), back to London (for a single night), and then to America for my grandmother’s 90th birthday. We started off in rural Virginia and then ended up on Block Island, an island off the coast of Rhode Island.

It was so beautiful.

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Blue Ridge Mountains, Virginia

The part of Virginia we were in is so rural it likes to say the cow population is higher than the human population. They’re both dwarfed by the immensity of the land. It also has no mobile phone connection.

Block Island’s mobile signal is quite incredible; it still shocks me that in the middle of the sea on the ferry ride over, the phone still works. Not that it helped us this time, given we both had British phones and data roaming off. It’s not an excuse but an explaination for the gap between this post and the previous (hopefully).

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Block Island, Rhode Island, USA

‘But enough of the holiday snaps and WiFi justifications!’, I hear you say. ‘Where is the knitting?’

Ah yes, the point I am meant to be ambling along to.

At this family gathering, amidst all the chatting and the eating and the visits to swinging bridges, I noticed that an unusually high number of people were knitting. I knew we were a family of knitters, but it’s a different thing to see it in action. Baby sweaters (new cousins are the best), adult sweaters, shawls, cowls were all casually being worked on as we sat chattering the days away.

I was the cowl contingent. The Starshower Cowl by Hilary Smith Callis turns out to be great for plane knitting as it took some attention and wasn’t completely mindless. As it got larger, the decrease rounds get less frequent and I had memorised all the other bits and I was able to chat and work on it at the same time. With all the chatting we were doing, it didn’t take me long to finish it up.

Super proud of my packing skills, I was then able to chose my next project from the two others I had packed to cast on when I had finished the cowl. I picked the pink cashmere from Eden Cottage Yarns because who wouldn’t? Never mind the heat, the pink is so cheerful and the Scottish (and Game of Thrones) mentality of ‘Winter is coming’ has really set into me these past few years.

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Eden Cottage Yarns Hayton 4 Ply in Fuchsia

This yarn has been linked with the Threshold Sweater in my mind since soonish after I bought it at EYF in 2017. I love the concept of those simple lattice cables crisscrossing over the front. I included the pattern in my ‘Make 9’ at the start of the year, but even as I did that I knew that I would be knitting something more inspired by it than the actual pattern.

This seems to be a running theme for me, doesn’t it? I love the design but I want it executed different. It was the usual desire for set in sleeves that got me this time. Typical.  Threshold has a very fetching boatneck but I start work in less than a month (EEK!) and the dress code seems pretty formal. I’m not actually sure that set in sleeves will make this a suitable work attire but it’s more likely in my eyes. I guess I’ll find out soon enough.

I also wanted to knit it top-down and with a shallow crewneck. I’m on holiday after all and while I love designing my own sleeve caps (sadly true), I really couldn’t be bothered. Knit me baby one more time by Mary Annarella has an interesting top-down set in sleeve method that I wanted to try in my on going quest to try all the different methods of knitting set in sleeves. Armed with that, on the 12th July I cast on The Hot (Pink) Mess.

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The Hot (Pink) Mess

Excuse the end sticking out of the neckline, and the (erm, well loved) rug. It’s coming along rather quickly despite the fiddling required to get it started. The method is an excellent one despite needing you to concentrate at the start. Of course, I ended up modifying this pattern too, raising the neckline, where the beginning of round was, and adding in extra stitches to make the pattern repeat work. You know, minor things.

For all I’m calling it The Hot (Pink) Mess, due to the start when it was a mess of short rows and picked up stitches, I’m pretty thrilled with it. It’s soft and fits well so far, so it’s shaping up to be something I can wear this winter.

It’s not going to be done this month though, which is fine with me as I’m rather enjoying knitting it. I need something for my HPKCHC so I cast on something little: the Invisible Summer Mini Socks by Cathy Miller out of old (10 years old kinda old) scraps of sock yarn my sister gave me. I think I will have barely enough yarn to finish these but the good thing is that if yarn gets tight, I’ll just throw in a stripe of another colour and it’ll be a design feature!

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A photo of the coffee and cake that made up my breakfast in place of a photo of my new socks because the socks are rather dark blue and turn out as blobs in my photos 😦

In this heat, it’s rather nice to have a smaller project than a cashmere jumper however lovely that jumper is to knit! And now to knit like crazy so they’re actually done for the end of the month.

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