Friday, 25 October 2013
Friday, 11 October 2013
Time for a knitting update. The top down Icelandic Sweater is progressing very slowly mainly due to me knitting the sleeve for the third time. The first time I decreased too quickly to try to get rid of some of the bagginess at the top of the sleeve, the second time I followed the pattern exactly but then found I needed and extra three or four inches in length and it was still narrow. This third (and final!) time I am decreasing every 10th round instead of every 6th which should spread the decreases out and mean it doesn't get too narrow before it reaches my wrist.
I am still enjoying the knitting but am beginning to lose patience with sleeves.
Next a silk scarf that has been left for years in an almost finished state. I finally got round to finishing the last six inches and washed and blocked it. The very fine silk is soft which will be comfortable but I prefer the crisper look of blocked wool lace knitting.
Finally a skein drying on the line. I spun this from a small amount of Corriedale roving. The coulourway was spearmint. I am pleased with it and as I only have 100g think it is destined to become a scarf.
I must get back to the sweater now. I want to finish the sleeves by the time I go to my knitting group at the end of the month, I was knitting a sleeve last month and I want to feel I have made some progress!
Wednesday, 9 October 2013
I decided to take my camera out today and look for autumn colour. I started off well with this wonderful creeper growing over a brick wall which I have been admiring as I walk past it each day but once I left the village I realised that I was still a little early. There are signs of autumn but the hedges and trees are still green.
There is a feeling of autumn, with freshly ploughed fields,
and wild crab apples.
This Michaelmas daisy has been growing in the bank for years. It must have escaped from a nearby garden and has spread to form an impressive clump.
Today it was full of bees.
Lastly, one tree that does seem to be putting on its autumn colours is the Horse Chestnut. I'll wait a couple more weeks to catch some more colour.
Wednesday, 2 October 2013
A few years ago, autumn replaced spring as my preferred season, perhaps its something to do with getting older and October is my favourite autumnal month. September often still feels like summer and November can be wintry but October is pure autumn.
I like the soft gentleness of the light as the year quietly moves towards winter. Of course it isn't always quiet, I remember the Great Storm of 1987 which was far from quiet and caused so much devastation.
In the garden the cyclamen reliably flower at this time of year. The one below is amazing and has been covered with flowers for the last month.
Cyclamen seeds are catapulted out of the seed pod when it bursts and now I have many smaller plants surrounding the original.
Inside the giant colchicum is in flower. I will plant this in the garden when the flowers fade, the leaves will appear during the winter and it will flower again next year. The packet clearly stated that allowing it to flower indoors in the first year would not affect it flowering in future years but I did try this a few years ago and it seemed to disappear from the garden completely.
October is also the month for paperwhites. I used to plant these in a pot of compost but they tend to grow quite tall and collapse everywhere so for the last few years I have been growing them in an inch of compost at the bottom of a tall jar. The leaves and flower stems grow to 12 - 15 inches and will be supported by the jar without the need for staking.
I have hyacinth bulbs ready for planting but those will wait another couple of weeks so that they will flower in the New Year after the Christmas decorations come down. There is something very comforting about doing the same tasks at the same time each year and noticing each month as it passes.