Sunday, 1 May 2016

MAGIC!


After very many years of knitting practice and many finished projects worn or used by three different generations of family and friends, I've taken on the challenge of learning a couple of new techniques; Magic Loop and Continental knitting. 

Josiekitten came to visit yesterday, for a knit, natter and catch-up. Needless to say, cakes were involved and the swap of small balls of sock yarn from our finished socks; to be used on our Sock Yarn Blankies (one day)!    


She passed on a couple of new skills that she had learnt from a colour work course at Loop, London. I had tried Magic Loop for sock knitting several years ago and it definitely didn't aid my sock production, so I didn't pursue the skill. However, this time it just seems to have clicked! It feels as though I have been using this method forever, rather than for about one quarter of one sock! 

I remember watching someone using the Continental method for a pair of socks several years ago at Knit Nation. She was whizzing along and seemed to be amused and bemused by our comparatively slow progress (I'm NOT a slow knitter!). I have never tried before yesterday. 

So, over a cup of coffee (tea for Josiekitten) and cake, we hatched a joint project plan to knit a pair of socks each using the same yarn, Opal Sweet and Spicy3 in colour way 'fruit gums'. We agreed to knit using Magic Loop and the Continental method. 



Today, Mr Snoops, Oscar and I set off in the glorious sunshine for a day trip to the beach; Aldeburgh , in Suffolk. Yes, the sun shone all day, we had fish and chips out of the paper and then afternoon tea at Snape Maltings, before heading home via Dunwich. It was beautiful and warm enough to not need coats! 


Travelling time served to get that Magic Loop working it's magic. It did! I'm hooked! How can it be that I have not perfected this skill before. It makes so much sense to knit, in effect, on two needles rather than four. It saves time! I've worked hard to avoid ladders at either side and so far, so good. they're not looking TOO bad. I'm thrilled! NO MORE DROPPED DPNS down the side of the car seats! No more needle between the teeth, whilst I 'knit on one' to avoid a ladder. Hooray! Well, at least for my plain stocking stitch Dave pattern socks. 

I'm not, as yet, having the same success with the Continental method, but am persevering. Things can get only get better it seems. In fact, they did get slightly better on the journey home, as I adjusted my 'yarn hold' to suit me better. I'll keep practising, but it'll need to speed up very quickly before I can even begin to say that I may be falling in love. There'll need to be some magic! ;-)


10 comments:

busybusybeejay said...

We have a new yarn shop in our little town and the owner advocates magic loop method but I have never tried it.I love the jazzy sock yarn.Must look that up.The weather here in North Wales has been horrendous.Yesterday we were having a new fence erected and it sleeted and hailed all day and yet the workmen just carried on.Oh for some warmer weather!!!Have a good week.

Sarah said...

Interesting. A magic loop to me is the stitch you do at the beginning of crocheting in the round which you can pull closed. Is a magic loop a circular needle? Is continental knitting where you pick instead of throw the yarn? I have tried it but found it hard. Arne of Arne and Carlos knits like that and he knits very fast! Your day out looked fun. We are going out somewhere tomorrow- no more work! I think part of the problem is that Ofsted are and have been expected all year. Wish they would just come and get it over with! Have a fun Monday!

Teje said...

Hi Ros! Your photos are gorgeus and the new yarn has so delicious colour! I think the continental is the way I use and I have been thinking also that it should be quicker as you almost just 'drop' the loops from the needle to the other and you don't move much your hands. Especially with something bigger like pullower you get a good speed! The magic loop is new to me and I would like to see what it is. Hugs to you and Oscar! x Teje

Molly said...

My mom has never tried the magic loop - yet. Good for you, Miss Roz!

AnnaPrasad said...

Lovely yarn. I haven't tried the magic loop method... And probably don't knit enough socks anyway...but I only knit continental, which I believe is much quicker and easier on your hands. Good luck picking it up! X Anna

Lynne said...

Isn't the magic loop brilliant?! I find it easier the DPNs, and I love the colour of your sock yarn too.

josiekitten said...

It was so good to meet up on Saturday and I am pleased that Magic Loop is going well. Keep on with the Continental knitting, it does get easier and feels much less awkward once you have been doing it for a while. I think my days of using dpns are numbered! Have a good week - a short one! (yay!) xxx

kathy b said...

That yarn is soooooo fruit loopy!

Ruth Eveleigh said...

Great post as ever but I was immediately distracted by that magnificent cup of tea. It looks a great cuppa! Just off to put the kettle on x x

Tracy said...

Knitting and chocolate--two of life's treats!! LOVE that sweet & spicy sock yarn...*BIG SWOON*... And what lovely snaps of your day out! We are finally--at last!--having some real spring and passing 10 C... LOL! Happy Spring Days ((HUGS))