Sunday, 12 September 2010


Originally uploaded by Panperoxide
This is my very first handspun sweater. I span the yarn as part of the Tour de Fleece this year. The fibre was Polwarth, colourway Hay Sunrise from Southern Cross Fibre. In total, it was 832 yards of something between an aran and chunky from 28oz - perfect for Ysolda's Liesl.
Very quick to knit, easy to memorise the pattern and NO SEWING UP!
And the dye job and fibre from the lovely David was perfection!

Tuesday, 7 September 2010

Testing, Testing

Originally uploaded by Panperoxide
I've been spending some time test knitting the past week or so. The pattern is Tulip Mitts, which is a new design from Laura Patterson of Fiber Dreams, which is to be offered as a kit from Posh Yarn in the near future.
I've test knit once before, and while I am still knitting something I want, it's a different process from knitting for me.
1. I have to pay Very Close Attention to the pattern. The whole point of a test knit is to pull out any little hiccups or typos or ambiguities. It's not OK to fudge it, or think you've worked it out - the designer needs to know now - that's why it's a test knit.
2. I have to go fast. Now this isn't a requirement from Laura, or for the previous designer I worked with. It's a personal thing. For me, I feel that if I haven't got the time to give it a decent stab and spend some time on the knitting, then I'm holding up the process - the designer wants me to check the pattern works, so she can get it out there.
3. It's not a way of getting a free pattern! Well - it is, but that's not got to be the prime motivation for this. For me, I like to feel I've helped in the process (and yes, I'll feel a little proud when this kit is released into the wild).
4. I have to be frank. I feel a bit nitpicky sometimes, but the only way the pattern is going to be right is if I say what's wrong (to be perfectly frank - not very much with this pattern).

So - if you can bear to knit within the lines, are happy to turn an item around quickly, and can be honest (but gentle - this is someone else's baby, after all), then go on and offer to test knit. I have a lovely pair of mitts out of this one!