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August 2017

I finally got to see "The Play That Goes Wrong". I've wanted to see it since this Royal Variety Performance. I can't wait to look intently at my hand and mispronounce some words at people.

the ply that goes wrong

Incidentally the first jumper I knitted definitely looks like this. I figured I could still wear and enjoy a jumper that was on the large side so I didn't even try to make it fit.


Hello Internet

I've been doing a lot of knitting this month, but it doesn't really count unless I write about it so this is going to be a big, all in one, update of what's being worked on.

First up I'm back to knitting ammonite cushions for an art fair in September. I might even get around to putting the spares up on my Etsy page, which I've had for years but never actually stocked up properly.

ammonite cushion selection

Next I've been working on some more giant yarn, which I'm slowly but surely knitting into a borrower blanket. I've not spent £20 on materials yet, thanks to some inherited stash items and a bit of savvy shopping. It is taking a lot of knitting time but unlike most things I make I can do it while watching subtitled TV shows.

borrower blanket

Finally I've been working on this months pattern, the cowry shell. Boy. I had forgotten just how much of a struggle curved, 3D shapes could be. They're at the point where modelling the shape with maths is more trouble than trial and error, so I've been erroring a LOT.

I did do a bit of working out by sketching the shapes and working out the size ratios of middle curvy bit to edge curvy bit. Then I worked out what number of short rows would theoretically give me that ratio.

cowry shell notes

Four attempts down and I felt I'd hit a bit of a road block. It was really hard to tell what was working better as none of the curves were holding their shapes.

cowry shell versions 1-4

By the way, if you're wondering how I tell the extremely similar white blobs apart I tie one knot in the tail of version one, two knots in the tail of version two, etc.

Here's a cowry shell (v4) held down in position so you can tell the knitting is sort of making the shape it's supposed to.

cowry shell version 4

It was literally as I was taking this photo and moaning to myself that the knitting kept trying to curve the wrong way that I realised. Turn the knitting inside out Jessica. I did and well...

cowry shell version 4 inside out

That worked much better.

Confident now that I was on the right track I tried adding a second layer to the shape to give the shell some colour.

cowry shell version 5 with colour

A couple more go-rounds later I think I'm finally getting there. I'm particularly happy with the serrated edges.

cowry shell version x with serrated edge

I am finding that it's a really hard shape to photograph, but that's a problem for after I've finished the pattern.