Saturday, 28 April 2012

nearly may!

it's nearly may - and the countdown is running to finish my "museum" socks! I've nearly all yarns spun and started knitting the first sock today - finally! it's a good thing I didn't plan for a sweater, because I doubt that I'd be able to finish that in time! I also put the test sock on hold, for once because the all green of the foot is boring to knit - and also because I'd run out of time with the "important" socks if I continued.. I still have the second "old-fashioned" sock in handspun jacobs to do for mindless knitting anyway.
 those are the blends I carded for stone walls, grass, path, sky and shrubs. plus a bit of purple to make the corolla of the fuchsia  and a few beads. I had planned to knit in tiny flowers, but there is just not enough space to do that in socks. the downside of faster knitting is not enough space to knit in special features. I'll add some beads instead.... I might also add a few other colours such as yellow and white in beads for flowers in the cottage garden, but I'll decide that on the hoof while doing the embroidery....
the fuchsia flower (crocheted) is in the middle; I spun some fine silk and plied it to make it more stable. it can't be too big, so I used a crochet hook in 1 mm.... the other yarns are all singles to avoid too much muddying of the colours. and even though I blended some blues/whites and greys for the sky - I decided not to use that finished yarn, because it was too well blended. in the end I just grabbed light blue, added white and very little grey for clouds and some darker blue for streaks of blue in the sky. I like it better now and to make the clouds in white stand out a bit I started to do short row parts (in the leg part of the sock) in garter stitch, so that there is a bit more "depth" in the sky part.... no pictures of that yet, because I could only show you about 10 rows:)

I also finished all the fibres I dyed with the leftover easter egg dyes.... all of them are plied with fine cotton, also remnants, which I dyed last year with procion mx dyes. I didn't have enough blue to ply the two skeins on the top left, so I finished half of the second skein with a dark pink... I like the greens best and the one on the right side, because the rosewood cotton worked so well with the rest of the colours. I've no idea yet what to do with the parrot colours bottom left,  so it all goes into the stash for now.

I also finally picked my wild garlic - and used it to make a load of pesto. given that I started out with only 3 little bubils about 15 years ago - I think it multiplied nicely under the leafy trees:) I managed to fill 6 kilner jars - and probably DH will finish it all by himself (actually, he already emptied 2 of the jars....). of course those jars will not last for more than maybe another month, but then I don't really like the idea of having everything available all year round! I think we appreciate certain foods more if we can't have them 24/7! I don't eat strawberries in winter or asparagus, so when the time comes I am really keen on them and indulge with more gusto! same for the wild garlic pesto. maybe I'll start freezing more of the wild garlic, once I have enough that it really is worth it. the pesto does not last a whole year, so I'll have to find another way to store it - provided the plants self-seed freely some more:) I also "help out" with propagation by collecting the ripe seeds (when they have turned black) and sowing them immediately. they need the cold in winter and germinate readily the next spring! I read somewhere that the green fruits can be used like capers, but if I try this I won't have any to spread out, so this has to wait, too....

I also finally updated my link list a bit and figured out why the page for recipes didn't show up! it helps if you click on "showing" instead of "hiding":) not that there's anything in it yet, but I do plan to put in bits and pieces during the next few months... if I can bring myself to write them down, I might even add a pattern page in time - but don't hold your breath:) still more to do - I have read more than just 3 books and there are more interesting textile books on my shelves, too....


Nina said...

I love the colours in this post. The batts for the socks are beautiful mixtures. I think the addition of the beads for flowers will add some interesting textures. The leftover easter egg dyes are lovely. I really like the pink blends at the top left. At least the parrot blend is very cheerful.
Wow - garlic pesto is an amazing colour. It is such a rich spring green.

Delighted Hands said...

Wow, the colors you have attained are beautiful-now to get to the knitting! The pesto looks wonderful-I will have to exchange pesto recipes with you, this looks amazing!

Jana Muchalski said...

Liebe Bettina,
Deine Bild-Socke begeistert mich! Sowas Schönes! Dafür ist bestimmt jeder einzelne Arbeitsschritt reine Freude.

Sprotte said...

Wow - du bist aber echt fleißig! Beeindruckend!
Für deine Bildsocken brauchst du dann unbedingt durchsichtige Gummistiefel :-)
Aber kann man denn aus Singles wirklich gefahrlos Socken stricken? Ich würde befürchten, dass die sich zu schnell abrubbeln.

Was ist denn wild garlic auf deutsch? Bärlauch? Dein Pesto sieht nämlich genau so aus wie die vielen quietschgrünen Bärlauch-Pesto-Gläser, die momentan in meinem Kühlschrank stehen...

Woolly Bits said...

Nina - thanks, I liked spinning them too! the only thing I don't like about the project is the time pressure - but that is entirely my own fault:)

Cindy - I am knitting away on the sky, just reached the part, where the straw roof starts.
pesto is nice made with other herbs too, parsley comes to mind! of course this also means that I can make more pesto, because it grows well here - in contrast to basil, which has to be pampered 24/7!

Jana - ja, die socken machen schon spass, ich haette nur vielleicht etwas mehr zeit einplanen sollen:) das, was mir dabei am meisten spass macht ist, dass ich zwar ein muster habe, das aber adhoc umwandeln kann, wie ich mag. zur zeit sind es verkuerzte reihen als wolken fuer den himmel:)

Sprotte - ich weiss nicht, ob ich gummistiefel ueber "halbseidene" socken ziehen sollte:) da ich sowieso meist in birkis rumrenne, geht es auch damit! ob ich sie dann tatsaechlich trage, oder nur als "schaustueck" behalte - ist abzuwarten:) generell tragen sich die socken aus einfachgarnen aber nicht schlecht, zumal, wenn seide oder ramie eingemischt ist. aber fuer richtig strapazierfaehige teile (wie stiefelsocken:) wuerde ich auch zwirnen oder sogar navajozwirnen!
wild garlic ist wirlich baerlauch -passend zur jahreszeit! aber es geht auch mit glatter petersilie - und die farbe ist dann beinahe genauso:)

Elke said...

Hallo Bettina,
ich finde auch, man muss Bärlauchpesto nicht das ganze Jahr essen, das macht es im April und Mal ja umso mehr zu etwas Besonderem.
Schöne Wollfarben hast du wieder zusammengestellt.
Viele Grüße

Leigh said...

Good grief, if I started knitting a pair of socks on April 28 to be finished by May, it would have to be May 2013! All your colors are just yummy! Perfect for spring.

Leigh said...

Good grief, if I started knitting a pair of socks on April 28 to be finished by May, it would have to be May 2013! All your colors are just yummy! Perfect for spring. So does garlic pesto. :)

Judy said...

Wow, you've been busy!! I love the soft spring colors of your skeins of yarn.
Enjoy your week,

Woolly Bits said...

Elke - ja, leider ist heutzutage ja fast alles immer moeglich und die leute sind so gewoehnt dran, dass sie meinen, es muesste so sein... unser pesto ist allerdings schon fast wieder aufgefuttert:) nichtmal den mai hat es gelangt....

Leigh - I don't have the excuse that I have to finish renovating my whole house - that's why I have to knit faster:)

Judy - thanks, I am still "socking", but the end is nearing.... just one sock and a rest to do:)