Tuesday 31 December 2013

Get "knitting fit"

Happy New Year. At midnight we start again, 2014, wow. Do you have any knitting resolutions?

Mine is to take better care of the parts of my body I need for knitting. To this end I'm including advice for keeping "knitting fit".

10 exercises for knitters:  From Pam Allen

ICE is your friend. I know it might feel better to put heat on sore muscles but ICE does a better job. After knitting, or at the end of the day, place a cold pack across the back of your neck. You might have to bundle up a bit but it really does help. Also put a cold pack on your wrists. They take a lot of the strain when you're knitting, all those repetitive movements are hard on them.

I do an exercise that a physio therapist told me about. It really works for me. This helps to loosen the muscles between your spine and your shoulder blades.
Stand with your back against a corner of a wall. Lean your back against the corner so that the corner is placed between your spine and your shoulder blade. Move your feet about 2' away from the wall. Comfortable? Roll your back up and down along the corner, by bending & straightening your knees. Don't rub, just roll. When you reach a point that hurts, hold it there for several seconds, then release and roll to a new spot. Now do the other side of your spine.
The theory, as I understand it, is that pressing and releasing stimulates blood flow and relaxes the muscles. These muscles in the upper back are very difficult to stretch yourself. The corner of the wall helps.

Hope these exercises help you knit for ever and ever,

Tuesday 24 December 2013

Happy Holidays. Hope you have a great one. I got most of my knitting done but you may have noticed there are a couple of needles still engaged. I was soooo closed this year.
Deb & Lyn

Tuesday 17 December 2013


I couldn't make a video. Somehow what I needed wasn't coming up on my computer today (or lots of other days, it's just me). So here's the I-Cord Thumb in pictures. The instructions for this mitten and the Alternative Thumb are in the Need An Accessory? book

Knit your mitten as usual, putting the thumb stitches on spare yarn.
When you're ready to do the thumb put all the stitches on ONE double pointed needle. (Tip: If there are really loose stands beside the needle stitches, pick one strand up, twist it and put on needle.) Knit across the stitches.
Now SLIDE the stitches to the other end of the needle. Yarn from the ball is now attached to the last stitch on the needle. Pull the yarn across the back of all the stitches and Knit the first stitch. Knit across all the stitches on the needle. You can see the ladder that makes. All is well.
Again, *Slide the stitches to the other end of the needle, pull the yarn across the back of the stitches and Knit all the stitches; repeat from * for the length of your thumb. Work a couple rounds of K2tog to decrease the top of the thumb. You'll have a lot of ladders going up the inside of the thumb. Wonderful.
Now, get out your crochet hook and let the magic begin. With the crochet hook, pick up a leg of a stitch at the base of the thumb (this is a stitch in the fabric of the palm).
Pull the first ladder through this stitch. 
Hook up each ladder, one by one up the thumb.
Put the last loop onto the needle. Using a sewing up needle, thread the yarn through all the thumb stitches and pull tight. Sew in end. Use the end at the base of the thumb to tidy up the little hole.
Ta, da, ladders are gone. Thumb is finished. This photo has NOT been doctored!!

That's how easy it is. You can knit a thumb in minutes. Try it.
P.S. Sharon in Surrey, Lazy, ha, ha! You have so many socks on the go. I just finished 2 pair this week. Now only 2 toques to knit. Good luck with the knee warmers.

Friday 13 December 2013

I'm knitting socks right now. Well, more like always since I have a sock project in my purse at all times. Just thought I'd show you because just I read a really good article about making socks fit on the  Knitting Daily blog.

Just finished a pair of plain toe-up socks in Koigu.
I've been carrying around a large (size 11 shoe) pair for my husband. They are NOT going fast.
A fun pair in worsted weight wool which ARE going really, really fast.
And a cool pair for a friend with slip stitches which I am loving.
P.S. Brenda, How can you have all your Christmas knitting done?! I'm so jeolous.
Sandra, I share your sentiments. Let's get the fast stuff done first. At least then it feels like some of it is done.
Liz and Sharon, good on you for not taking this on. I'm sure you're much more relaxed than I am.

Wednesday 4 December 2013

What's on your Christmas knitting list? ARGHH, it's December already and I've not started.

I was at a Knitting Guild meeting last night and Sandra (who knits for everyone at Christmas) gets a phone call from her sister-in-law:  "We really liked those hats you knit us last year, could you do us each some more this year and we really liked our socks and the kids would love leg warmers and . . ."    Sandra's comment was "The hats are doable, but where was all this information when I asked in August?! And how long does she think all this knitting is going to take? It's December already!!"

I guess it's time to get down to some sort of list.
2 Toques, one for my son and a second one for the daughter's new boyfriend, both in black, of course.
Socks, at least 2 pairs.
Cowl and matching mittens.
Finish mittens for myself since it's getting cold here.

Must get going on it.