I am still knitting, though trying to read a bit more as well, and I've not had so much heart of late for posting about such fluffy stuff I suppose. But it's still a very good thing to do, not least because of my lovely group of tricoteuses/bloggeuses, which now goes under the official name of Quess'quitricote, a pun on Quessoy, the town where we meet, and 'qu'est qui tricote?' - who's knitting?
We turn up at the library every two weeks, five of us - Lyse, BN, Soize and myself (with the occasional supportive masculine visit from Quercus), and Sonya who doesn't blog but is quite amused by the rest of us nattering away about it, plus the assorted children of two of our number, who either racket around or sit quietly making things and looking at books - this library is not a formidably quiet place like those of my youth but really rather lively. The librarians make us coffee and bring people over to show us to and generally make much of us, the children are involved and welcome but not made the centre of attention, we talk knitting and blogging but plenty of other things too, we swap plants and wool and stories, I don't understand everything that's said because the speech is quite fast and familiar and funny, but I'm not afraid to jump in and when I do and can't always find words people are patient and helpful, and often I find myself laughing at the stories even when I don't understand them completely because they're being told in a funny way. I always come away smiling and feeling better about life.
'So,' asked Lyse a few weeks ago, 'why haven't you put your tiger on your blog?'
'Because I've only just sent it to my sister, and I don't want to spoil the surprise if she sees it there.'
The tiger in question was knitted from Muir and Osborne's latest work 'Knit Your Own Zoo'. On the whole I restrict my knitting to the practical and wearable, but J gave me the book for Christmas, my lovely sister has a penchant for tasteful tigers, and the leftover wool from my nieces marmalade socks did strike me as very tigerish, so I thought why not do something small and silly for a change. In fact I ended up having to buy more wool, as the skein of tapestry wool I had around and used for the dark stripes with stranded knitting proved to be nothing like enough, and the whole project was so fiddly and detailed, though brilliantly conceived and coded, that I think I could have knitted myself a full length sweater dress in the time.
The stranding with multiple wools was lumpy and he had to blocked before finishing and assembling, which amused me because it looked like a big game taxidermy project, prior to being frolicked on by an Elinor Glynn character. In miniature, of course.
when put together, pipe cleaners are required to stiffen the legs so he stands, but even so, perhaps because the only ones I could find were craft ones which really didn't have much stiffness at all (BN said afterwards I'd have been better going to a tobacconist and getting real ones, which apparently you still can), his back legs are inclined to sag and slide and he looks like he's about to pee.
However, he can be propped, and I was not unhappy with the final result. The librarians nearly stole him to use as a prop in the children's storytelling session, and my sister seems to like him too. Still, I think I'll stick to socks and gloves in future.