In Progress

I have several things on the go at the moment (apart from two novels needing to be finished and/or edited).

On my needles I have three pairs of socks in various stages of progress and one shawl (which has increased in size since I took the photo a few days ago).

First up I have the Zarathustra Socks from Ravelry. These look complex (they're not) and rather strange until they're embracing a foot. I have had so much fun with this pattern and can see myself doing it again ... and again.

So far, one sock complete and another in the very beginning stages.

Next, there are the Pin Stripe Socks in a self-patterning yarn that I had leftover from knitting for my daughters-in-law. I wanted something for knitting in the car where I didn't have to count rows or follow complex patterns. These fit the bill perfectly.

They're almost finished and I probably need to get onto them so I can cast on something else.

Finally, as far as socks go, I have a lace and cable pattern that I adapted from a pattern book. It doesn't photograph well. I've completed one sock and haven't got around to casting on for the second. But soon. It's a quick easy pattern.

All these socks utilise either a V-heel or French (Round) Heel worked toe up. I've fallen in love with these heels and the way they fit and have developed a quick reference system so that I know how many gusset increases, when to turn etc. The heels are worked similarly and it's really just a preference which one to work. The V-heel appears to be ideal for those with a narrower heel but the French Heel also fits comfortably. I doubt I'll ever go back to any other type of heel - at least for adult patterns.

The last item on my needles is a shawl using Malabrigo Yarn. I fell in love with this yarn years ago and it's never gone out of favour. I have two colours and hope to make an extra large shawl loosely based on the Prism Shawl. I have introduced a new colour (not seen in the photo) and did one repeat of Nightmare Stitch (also known as Dropped Stitch Pattern). Believe me, when you have over 100 stitches on your needles and then all those doubled yarn overs, my name for this pattern better suits. The yarn overs wouldn't slide easily along the needle and would cross over the knitted stitches and I estimate it took me four times as long to work that row than it would normally. It was a nightmare! But the craziest thing is that I plan to do another repeat further down in the shawl where I'm likely to have 300+ stitches!

I also have a quilt in progress which I'm hoping to work on some time today but the stained glass wall hanging is finally finished and waiting for DH to cut the rod to size so I can paint it and get the quilt on the wall.

Not exactly on my needles, but a few weeks ago I had cause to mend some hair sticks. I decided at the same time that I would make myself a few new ones. Unwisely, the headpins I used are not strong enough so I will have to source some new ones and redo the toppers, but I'm happy with the way they look - I just can't wear them yet because the beads bend the headpins, making them sag downwards! Not a good look.

Needles and beads and yarn and fabric aside, I am slowly working my way through Janette Oke's Return to the Canadian West series. I say slowly, because reading time is limited (and I have a whole new curriculum to read through for work -ugh!) and I am now old/mature/sensible enough to know that staying up reading until three in the morning - even on the weekend - is not a good idea.

And, as I am very well aware, I am still a work in progress and am thankful that I am being crafted by a Master Hand.