Day 12


I’m supposed to just be listening but I am enthralled watching a first violinist conduct a string quartet through her solo moments. Such small, intentional motions with her eyes and chin.

My knitting has become a thing that keeps my hands busy as I focus on her and the extraordinary music the quartet is playing.

Not exactly how I’d intended this to work.

The music is on the Sky Arts 2 channel, the second installment in a 17 part series – ‘Beethoven: the complete string quartets’. Guess what it’s about. Tonight they are playing Quartet in E Flat Major, Op. 127, ‘they’ being The Belcea Quartet who performed this in the Vienna Konzerthaus. I love how that word looks – ‘Konzerthaus’.

Beethoven manages to write such beauty for the 3 violins in counterpoint with some very deep, almost violent, undertones on the cello. I’m not sure if I like it but I don’t dislike it so I shall continue to listen. The shifts between melodic and bombastic are quite fascinating. I think the best word to describe it all is ‘confllicted’. I wonder how it was received by the people who first heard it?

day12Nothing exciting to report today for my knitting except the purchase of buttons for the sweater. Today’s square is purple from the same ball of yarn I used on Day 3 (Opal’s Sweet & Spicy ‘Plum’) and uses the same techniques, instructions and pattern as Day 2.

It’s almost too big for my laptop keyboard. Need to find a new location for photograph taking….

Day 8


Not sure what to write about today so I’ll just start with telling you that I returned to Bach today but instead of the Brandenburg concerto’s I listened to Concerto for 2 Harpsichords, Strings and Continuo No.5 in C minor’. Then I went on to Handel’s ‘Music for the Royal Fireworks’

I’m using another Austermann yarn (I have a lot in my stash). This one is a self-patterning yarn designed to imitate a fair isle pattern. The colourway is #48, called ‘Fuchsia’.

I added the square between the square from yesterday (day 7) and the rectangle from day 6 to complete a third large square.

day 8 - detail

Detail of picked up stitches – brown fabric is from day 7, pink from day 6. You can see stitches 12-14 above the brown fabric, the central stitches for decrease start with stitch 15 where days 6 and 7 join, stitch 16 is in the last decrease from day 6. Stitches 17 to 31 are in the pink fabric of day 6.

day 8

What’s the difference between self-patterning and self-striping yarn Charlotte?

Self-striping is simpler than self-patterning in its use of colour. Self-striping yarn is just that, it has been dyed to produce stripes of colour. Self-patterning yarn often requires a computer to determine the length of yarn that will be dyed in each colour to make a more complex pattern. You’ve seen examples of both in my blanket. The Regia Brasil yarn from day 5 was dyed to produce regular sections of alternating colour and pattern, as well as the yarn used from day 3 by Opal (picture below). The Step yarn from day 6 was dyed to produce graduating stripes of pink. There are other self-striping yarns that have no patterned sections and are dyed to produce definite stripes such as this Step yarn in ‘Vulcan’ which I am thinking of using tomorrow.


One pattern repeat of the yarn used on day 3 – Opal sock yarn in Sweet and Spicy colourway Plum


Example of the entirety of the Step sock yarn used on day 6 in Holiday Color #194 – Pink

vulcan sock-cropped

Vulcan colourway of Step sock yarn – definite plain stripes in grey, red and black

In the pictures above you can see how different the fabric produced looks when it is done in stocking stitch rather than in garter stitch.

Sock yarn is versatile and can also be used for shawls. When a yarn and pattern are chosen carefully to compliment each other, even simple mitred squares can produce something spectacular.


My favourite shawl made from 3 balls of Schoppel-Wolle’s Zauberball (1200m of yarn!!!). It is tremendously difficult to leave any yarn-related event with it.