Day 6


Highly stressful day in an unpleasant sort of way. I hate meetings with government employed jobsworths. Gah!

No music today – I’ve left the tv on. I’m still worked up from the meeting and the quiet of the music I’ve been listening to will actually wind me up more. Contrary, I know, but there’s a reason my mum calls me ‘contrary Mary’. Anyway, knitting is one of the techniques I use to find and stay calm regardless of what is going on around me.

Another Austermann sock yarn today and it’s PINK! I don’t know what the range is called but the yarn is their Step sock yarn in colour #194. I need cheering up and I want a yarn that will show of the mirrored mitred corners in today’s piece. We’re trying a rectangle. This yarn has been dyed to create broad stripes of colour in gradient from white to pink and back again.

I’m working on the left hand side of the squares from days 3 and 4. Cast on 16 stitches, pick up 31 along the joined squares like you did yesterday, starting with day 2’s square, cast on another 16. Don’t pick up the stitch at the tip of the day 4 square. You will need that later. Remember that you will pick up your stitches with the right side of your work facing you and work from left to right. This pattern has 2 sets of decreases resulting in 4 stitches decreased on each right side row. Pay attention – there is a variation to the decrease pattern in the last few rows.

You have 63sts on your needle, and are working from right to left with the right side of your work facing you.

Row 1: k14, (sl2 tog, k1, psso), k29, (sl2 tog, k1, psso), k14 – 59sts
Row 2: k across
Row 3: k13, (sl2 tog, k1, psso), k27, (sl2 tog, k1, psso), k13 – 55sts
Row 4: k across
Row 5: k12, (sl2 tog, k1, psso), k25, (sl2 tog, k1, psso), k12 – 51sts
Row 6: k across
Row 7: k11, (sl2 tog, k1, psso), k23, (sl2 tog, k1, psso), k11 – 47sts
Row 8: k across
Row 9: k10, (sl2 tog, k1, psso), k21, (sl2 tog, k1, psso), k10 – 43sts
Row 10: k across
Row 11: k9, (sl2 tog, k1, psso), k19, (sl2 tog, k1, psso), k9 – 39sts
Row 12: k across
Row 13: k8, (sl2 tog, k1, psso), k17, (sl2 tog, k1, psso), k8 – 35sts
Row 14: k across
Row 15: k7, (sl2 tog, k1, psso), k15, (sl2 tog, k1, psso), k7 – 31sts
Row 16: k across
Row 17: k6, (sl2 tog, k1, psso), k13, (sl2 tog, k1, psso), k6 – 27sts
Row 18: k across
Row 19: k5, (sl2 tog, k1, psso), k11, (sl2 tog, k1, psso), k5 – 23sts
Row 20: k across
Row 21: k4, (sl2 tog, k1, psso), k9, (sl2 tog, k1, psso), k4 – 19sts
Row 22: k across
Row 23: k3, (sl2 tog, k1, psso), k7, (sl2 tog, k1, psso), k3 – 15sts
Row 24: k across
Row 25: k2, (sl2 tog, k1, psso), k5, (sl2 tog, k1, psso), k2 – 11sts
Row 26: k across
Row 27: k1, (sl1, k1, psso) x2, k1, (k2tog) x2, k1 – 7sts
Row 28: k2tog, sl1, k2tog, psso, (sl1, k1, psso) – 3sts
Row 29: sl1, k2tog, psso. Break yarn and pull through the stitch.


The extra decreases in the last 3 rows are used to work the extra 3 stitches. If I had continued to decrease as in the rest of the rectangle, I would have worked down to one stitch as normal but would have been left with a peculiar nobbly bit in the middle of what we want to be a straight line.

So back to the use of knitting to find my calm. I have learned/taught myself many different crafts from making bobbin lace, and cross stitching, to handspinning and dyeing yarn. I have often struggled to find the words to explain why I do these things without being able to find the right words. When I am knitting (or crocheting or spinning) I feel peaceful, productive, creative. I often create for others, so I feel generous. I also feel connected. Yarn spinning in particular is a craft as old as humanity. I feel a very strong, very emotional connection to those who have gone before me. These are techniques our great grandparents used and those before them etc. But I’m still not really explaining it well. Renate Hiller says it so much better than I do in ‘On Handwork‘.