Rams and Yowes baa spa day

I have come out of hibernation to add an interim post as it has been a while since I updated our blog. The sun has started to shine with a little warmth promised soon, perhaps Spring will arrive and our adventures can begin again, although I still have to try and feel better going out.  

I completed all the knitting of Rams and Yowes, I am trying to estimate the stitch count to complete the full blanket to give a guide of the actual work involved although the plainest part of the project was the border and I feel this was the most time consuming although I say that I would knit it all over again!  

The main reason I put off knitting this project was the fact it was 'steeked' but after conquering this I soon found out the stitches really don't go anywhere even when cut with a pair of scissors. I can add to their tenacity by the experience I had when I saw my completed border. I gulped, thinking I had made a huge mistake and would have to unravel the full border to knit all over again. Daunting I know but those who know me well will confirm that this is something I would have done although through tears I would have gone back to the picking up the border stitches. A long way to go! The border being plain and the body of the blanket stranded meant there was an excess of material which presented itself to me in waves! I couldn't stop thinking about them but was relived to find that a friend who I knit along with on Instagram had the same issue and even more have had this experience after I searched further with Google. I had only seen perfectly finished projects and mine was awful.

 

Blocking tools

The next stage was the bath to let the stitches relax (maybe I should have got in with it!) the wool needed to bloom. Into the bath it went with some wool soak and I lifted it out like a big, haven't baby wrapped in towels. It was seriously heavy and my arms were aching as the next bit required some more of my strength. I had a supply of blocking 'bar' pins plus some single pins to block. I had two jigsaw blocking mats to join up too. Dad placed bags on the floor which we covered with a sheet before starting the stretching exercise after the spa! 

Spa time

This process required my full attention plus a prompt order of more pins to make sure this blanket had flat borders. I recommend the block pins if anyone is thinking about knitting this or any blanket as I would have had a lot more work using single pins. I also recommend completing the iCord border as it helped to bring an edge and lessen the waves before I blocked. The iCord requires picking up all the 924 stitches again to cast them off which seems futile but it really does help. I did this prior to soak in the blanket. An iCord is a bit like 'one step forward, two steps back' when casting off as you cast on three stitches to cast off one and progress along the line of 924 stitches casting off one each time until you only have two left to knit together. I love doing it!

The current status of Rams and Yowes is still spread out on our floor. Day 7 which is a longer time than necessary but I am nervous and just want to make sure everything will be fine. I have removed some blocking pins and will remove more tomorrow. After this I will have a photo or two and if dad is involved there will be a lot more behind the scenes! The warmth and light coming into the room shows off the blanket as the Rams and Yowes relax on the floor. 

One more blog post on the project which should be fairly soon to show the finished blanket and we all will see if my over cautious blocking has worked. Please call back to see and after that I hope we will have more scenes of nature to share. We might even take some on our photo shoot location. 

I am still knitting and there are three new kits being launched by Kate on Friday to tempt me! 

Thank you for reading  

Beverley