Tuesday, October 17, 2006

I've done the first Lizard Ridge square, complete with several mistakes. (no-one could accuse me of being a perfectionist!) It now seems odd that this pattern is in stocking stitch both because it curls up and because it's not reversible - and you kind of want a blanket to be reversable, don't you? Although perhaps an Afghan is different - I don't really know what an Afghan is. Can anyone advise? Anyway I suppose I could back it with something - even possibly something knitted.
The film crew turned out to be not from Channel 4 at all. They were an independent film company making a feature film about civil liberties in the UK - I got the impression the director saw himself as an English version of Michael Moore. Anyway they sat us all at the kitchen table and interviewed us for about an hour. We all had to avoid having words put into our mouths eg. "So do you think your daughters were treated like terrorists?", and as we didn't say exactly what he hoped we may end up on the cutting room floor. Either way it was interesting because I learned more details from the girls about what happened. This report on the BBC this morning underlines the point they were trying to make.
The Knitting and Stitching Show at Ally Pally was huge, hot and heaving - I don't know what I'd imagined but it wasn't that. Perhaps late morning on Saturday was the busiest time. Anyway I saw some lovely things, and bought some wooden straight needles for the Lizard Ridge, and this yarn at a very good price from a man who only sells at exhibitions. Only spent £25 in all though, so not too wild.
Organising exhibitions seems to be almost a license to print money. All the organisers had to do was hire the venue and publicise it. And set up a few workshops. Then they just wait to collect the money from the exhibitors (I bet it was expensive) and the thousands and thousands of visitors.

Friday, October 13, 2006

New arrival

It's here - already! I'm really pleased with the colours.
Have postponed my visit to Ally Pally to tomorrow morning. I won't be able to stay long because we've got to go to Sussex for a wedding in the afternoon, but felt I had to be here today to tidy up for the film crew - and of course to make a start on Lizard Ridge.
Glad I did my experimental swatch with odds and ends - I'm sure I'll make plenty of mistakes but hopefully not as many as I would have done.
The biggest problem is going to be persisting with TC's much-needed rib jumper when this glorious thing is waiting for me!

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Wips etc and big splurge

TC's jumper is making slow but steady progress - it's not exactly a fun knit but a few rows every couple of days is manageable. My circular jumper is also progressing rather slowly - but then I didn't take either of them to Georgia. I took the tea cosy, and finished the first side.
I couldn't understand why such a small project needed so much yarn, but of course the reason is that you have to carry it across the back when you are not knitting with it. Should mean the tea stays good and warm, as the cosy has a thick lining.
I've also started experimenting with Lizard Ridge. Being a tightwad I was horrified at the idea of buying 21 skeins of Noro Kureyon so I thought I'd have a go from my stash from Handpainted Yarns. It's fun to knit because there are lots of colour changes and short rows, and I'm now having a go at backwards knitting which is interesting.
But I've realised my efforts will not be fully rewarded without Kureyon's colour pattern, so last night I made a trip to ebay and splurged £75 on 22 balls in five different colours from magimade. Oh dear. And tomorrow I'm going to Ally Pally for the knitting and stitching show, so will doubtless succomb to more temptations when I probably should be saving up for the fines. Thanks so much for the messages of support about this. We are hoping the worst is over. The publicity for the case has made the girls feel the protest was worthwhile, and now Channel 4 wants us to take part in a film about the erosion of civil rights in the UK so that will be interesting.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Oooh - I've been tagged. By Alice, to list five things feminism has done for me.

1. Gave me much more confidence about my place in the world than my mother had. In particular freed me of much of the self-hatred women felt in the 50s and 60s and gave me positive images and words to replace all the negative names and stereotypes she was hemmed in by.

2. Gave me a community - the women's movement - and a cause to fight for when I was in my twenties.

3. Gave me choices - expanded the spaces within which I can live. Being single was a choice for me for a long time, and I enjoyed it. I shunned all domestic crafts for decades. Now I knit!

4. Made it possible to talk about sex from women's point of view which in turn dispelled some of the shame and confusion of my mother's generation.

5. Gave me pride in being a woman, and respect for other women.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Georgian socks

Didn't managed to photograph these before they'd been worn and so look a bit misshapen. They are knitted from scratchy wool - you have to wear cotton socks underneath them. But they are really warm.
I bought them in Tbilisi's enormous market at Vagzali Square from a beautiful old woman who was selling them from a basket. Unfortunately I can only say hello, thank you, sorry, yes and no in Georgian so was unable to talk to her much.

Sunday, October 08, 2006


Back from Georgia - had a wonderful time. Knitting is very big there, but more as a necessity than a hobby. There are wool shops everywhere. I bought three pairs of hand-knitted socks in a market from the woman who knitted them. Have posted a few pictures here, some of interest mainly to members of my choir.
Meanwhile things were happening at home: the girls were arrested on a climate change demonstration and held in police cells for 36 hours before being released in the middle of the night and charged with three offences. I knew nothing until I came home on Wednesday evening, and spent Friday at the magistrates court. I was very shocked to start with, but now I feel proud of the girls.
Thanks very much for the advice about my shoulder. I was prescribed anti-inflamatories which certainly seemed to help, and it's not as painful as it was.