Knitting Tour: Waterford

Marketing is a fast world. Plans can shift at the last minute based on real-life conditions. The people on the ground (that’s us) make adjustments based on the venue, foot traffic, space available, and the attitudes of passersby. Contracting for a marketing firm is not a job for the faint of heart, or for people who use a pen to write in their diaries. I wasn’t sure about the travel plans for Waterford until the afternoon before; I might have needed to have my bag packed so I could be picked up from work, or I might have been able to take the train down for the day. Lucky for me, the train option came up and I was able to have a quiet evening at home before setting out early the next morning.

The Waterford train was, like the Cork train, slick, new, modern, and comfortable. Unlike the Cork train the previous week, it was warm and nearly empty. Armed with the beginnings of a sleeve and my new iPod Touch, I passed the two and a half hour journey quietly and happily. I finished the sleeve and cast on for the second one, which is all I’d ever hoped for out of the train journey.

This isn’t the sleeve, but it is a picture of the project:

I hadn’t been to Waterford in a very long time, but recognized the place as soon as we pulled into the train station. Waterford IT is next door to the Waterford Crystal factory, which happens to be the only place in Waterford I could trust myself to find. (The only times I’d been in Waterford before were to accompany visitors who wanted to see the crystal.) We arrived, despaired of ever finding parking, then talked our way into an all-day parking spot right next to the building where we’d be setting up. Things looked good.

Our spot was smack in the middle of the business building, just outside a set of lecture halls that appeared to be named after other towns in the county. This set the dynamic for the day: every hour we’d get a rush of people, then it would trail off, and things would be very quiet until lectures let out again. We only for 16 knitters, but considering people were mostly on their way to or from something, that wasn’t such a bad total. I also met a couple people involved in things I like that aren’t knitting-related: Caitriona, a woman who organizes outreaches to local schools to get kids interested in science, and Richie, a guy working on his PhD in chemistry. I also got to meet the usual lot of great people, teach a few people to knit, and remind a lot more of the knitting skills they’d gotten a long time ago but thought they’d forgotten.

I didn’t have a sock to work on, so I made fingerless gloves instead:

They are the easiest fingerless gloves you can possibly imagine.

Using aran/worsted yarn and 5.0 mm needles:
CO 30 sts
Knit all rows for about 6.5 inches. Cast off.
Sew the cast-on edge to the cast-off edge, leaving a hole for your thumb.
Weave in ends.

I started these shortly after we sat down around 11 when I realized 1. I had nothing to knit, and 2. if I knitted our example yarn, we would run out, and 3. no one ever wants to knit with the dark colours. So I picked up a couple little yarn cakes of the Lamb’s Pride Worsted in (I think) Turkish Olive, borrowed a pair of mini Peace Fleece needles from the Vodafone stash, and started kitting. They were done about 10 minutes before we packed up around 3:15.

Not bad for an afternoon’s work.

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Behold, the zombie blog

The results of my experiment are in: I am a lazy blogger.

As it turns out, I am only a slightly less lazy knitter. While the blog slept, I designed, knit, and wrote up three patterns. I’ve also taught over a hundred people to knit and been interviewed by a celebrity. And that’s just the knitting stuff.

For now, I leave the blog with the first of my free pattern offers: the Lava Flow Cowl. This started life as an idea for a möbius cowl with reversible cables, and grew from there. It’s written for the luscious Mirasol K’acha, but could be worked in any single ply yarn. Choose something soft so it feels nice against your neck.

My attempt at a mobius strip.

As written, this uses two and a third balls. You can use slightly larger needles and probably still squeeze a cowl out of three balls without having to go into a fourth. You can check out the pattern page on Ravelry, or download it directly from this link. You don’t have to be on Ravelry to download directly — how cool is that?