Friday, September 08, 2006

At Sea, With Knitting

Our first full day on board was at sea, motoring up toward Juneau. Two knitting classes were scheduled that day, Joan in the morning and Joan in the afternoon. It was easy to remember the teacher's name(s).

Joan S. started us off with Orenburg shawls. Yippee! Heading for Alaska, there were bound to be examples for sale in the formerly Russian oriented coastal towns. Now we would know what we were looking at, and how they are constructed.

Joan S Teaching (2)

This photo shows Joan S. hard at work, hieroglyphs on the flip chart, microphone in hand. What I also like about this photo is that it is clear we are having our class in a bar: see all the bottles? Behind a cage??? That's right, they must have known we were coming, they locked up the booze. Also barely showing in the photo above is the head of a big brass tiger, after which the bar was named: the Bengal Lounge. More about the tiger later.

I did ask, Marcy and Claudia, if they had my favorite single malt (Laphroiag) but no, they did not. No reason to drink then, so we got back to knitting.

Here is a shot of several samples from the class:

joan's class1

Notice how people tried out lace designs, did neat, even knitting, and were adventurous? Me? Not so much:

joan's orenburg

Astute knitters will note a few, um, mistakes design features in my sample. We start knitting at the bottom edging, sideways, and then do two mitered corners. So far, so good. Then we pick up stitches and knit up the body of the shawl, both side edgings included. There are a few anomalies here, such as edging blips that expand, and oops! a few extra stitches in the center which show up and then disappear, or not, and no, no single malt was involved. At the end of the central area, the final edging is knitted sideways, mitering corners and attaching the edging as it is knit. You might notice the lower edging on my sample has two bumps, the upper edging has three. That would be non-standard. I'm happy to have learned the whole process, though, and wouldn't this make a nice washcloth in linen?

We broke for lunch (never miss a meal) and then Joan M-M taught us toe-up socks. Sue and I combined ours and made a little pair of booties, showing all of the toe-up techniques:

sockies

Sue's is the neat and tidy one, mine is the big and floppy one. We knew they were not the same size, but figured a baby wouldn't care, or maybe we'd get lucky and find a baby with two different sized feet. We decided to dye and felt them, first the dyeing:

cruise socks

I am so predictable with the color, eh Nancy? Then I ran a place ribbon in the eyelets to hold them open, stuffed them with plastic bags and tossed them in with a load of washing (the plastic bag stuffing was a waste, but I did get two very clean plastic bags out of the wash).

The ribbon was replaced by a longer one and booties occurred:

sockies2

Long time readers may recognize the ribbon from the sachets in this post. I am, as has been noted, predictable.

I liked the toe-upness of the socks, and plan to try a pair soon, so I won't forget. I have some dyed sock yarn from Nancy's dye class last January, which might just look cool toed-up, so to speak.

The day ended with wine, knitting, dinner and rocking gently to sleep at sea. We had more classes to look forward to the next day, and of course, more food to eat.

I leave you with my favorite trip photo so far:

Glacier Bay (2)

Glacier Bay, taken by Adriana (out of sequence, I know). Yes, we had great weather. The brass tiger? A story for another day.

4 Comments:

Blogger Anne said...

Sigh... a whole day of knitting and then gorgeous scenery to feast on. Sounds idyllic.

11:17 AM  
Blogger Birdsong said...

What a beautiful environment; I am duly envious - knitting and water and mountains. You have similar tastes in bevvies to me, although I would have settled for the perennially available Glenlivit or Glenmoraghie.

3:33 PM  
Blogger Leigh said...

Well, I appreciate your sharing your samples, design features and all. Since I started reading your blog I have admired your fine knitting; nothing like mine. But, I keep at it because I love it. Seeing your learning blips makes me feel less self conscious about my own. Thanks for being down to earth!

6:30 PM  
Blogger Cheryl said...

Wow! I'm amazed that you can knit without getting seasick! How cool! Love the little booties and the step-by-step photos.

1:25 AM  

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