Sunday, July 01, 2007


Saturdays have become a very special day for me lately. After our ritual coffee, my father and I journey down to the Moss St. Market to pick up a few organic supplies for the week (vegi's, cheese, &c.), to pick up some lunch (all so yummy middle east food made by a woman's group) and to take in the feel of the place. One day, when we have a farm, we will go to the Saturday market to be part of the action and sell our crop, but until then, we simply go and enjoy.

There is often a yard sale near the market, but this Saturday, I struck gold. Well, not gold gold, but knitter's gold. A pile of knitting books including the ever popular, Reader's Digest "The Ultimate Sourcebook of Knitting and Crochet Stitches". My very first stitch source book. Not only that, but I also inside a tin of hundreds of (what do we call them? skeins?) of embroidery thread, I found this...

I suspect it to be from between 1855 and 1890, but that is simply from my limited knowledge of European manufacturing techniques.

Inside, it looks like this...

And like this...

I'm not certain how it goes together, but it was made with the handle and the hooks separate, which indicates to me pre 1890's. I truly lucked in to find a complete set. There are a few other bits in the tin, including some pointy thing with an ivory handle and gold plating.

I told you already that I saw this wonderful floppy fulled sun hat last weekend, but I was to shy to ask for the pattern. I spent the week building up my courage only to find that she was not there this weekend. I'm still on the lookout for a pattern, so if ANYONE sees one, please let me know.

Another sight to see at the market, is the lovely handcrafted goods. I had it in my head to commission a woodworker to make for me unfinished inch gages for spinners, then I would wood-burn a design on them and sell them at Etsy. So I looked around the market and chose the one individual who's work I liked best. He made me a couple of samples, and presto. They are way too lovely!

These fully finished inch gages are so amazing, there is nothing I could do to improve them.

Do you see? He inlaid the inch notch with a wood of a contrasting colour to make the measurement more accurate.

He's offered to make them for me to sell to my spinning friends (Etsy?), but I wonder if Etsy would allow me to sell something handmade by another person. I don't see why not. They are, after all, just the most perfect little tools. I wonder, would anyone buy these?

On the knitting front, I finally finished those red socks. Originally I thought that stst socks would be a nice break after the Wedding Gift, but really, it got so boring near the end, it was all I could do not to tear out the needles and frogg the whole thing. But I need the needles for the Monkey Socks.

Last night, as I was dressed up and waiting for it to be time to go out for dinner, I worked on my red socks. I looked at my yarn, oxblood red, and I looked at my sweater, also oxblood red, and I thought, "self, gee, this yarn would make a great pair of socks to go with this outfit ('cause you know I'm all about things matching - not). I should knit some some-day. Wait, I am knitting some. Oh, and I'm almost finished the second sock. I wonder..." With those thoughts I began to knit like the wind blows. Trying my very best to finish the socks off before I head out. I *knit, and knit and knit, then tink a little because I forgot to dec at the right moment then knit some more* repeat from * to *. When the time came, I was so close, just the last few stitches to graft and some of the main ends to tie in. I wore some factory made stockings instead :(. But I finished them that evening. See, don't they look boring?

But if you want more exciting socks, have a look at this yarn I picked up at the Victoria Fiber Fest.

And now, I give you the beginning of my monkey!

All those other blogs are right, it is a great deal more fun to knit than it looks. I worry that it might be too big, so I'll knit a couple of pattern repeats, and if it doesn't work, I'll just have to overcome my fear of frogging and save the pattern for some other yarn.


Annie said...

My friend Kara worked out a way to do the Monkey on a 12 stitch repeat instead of 16 so you could try that if your current sock turns out to be too big:

Miss Scarlett said...

Look at that incredible find! You aren't kidding about gold. That is so beautiful.

So are your inch gauges (I know so little about spinning I have no clue what they would be used for). Beautiful. I don't see why Etsy would have a problem, they probably have a FAQ page that should clear it up for you.

I know what you mean about rushing through a project just to get it done - I have only done that 2x, otherwise I give in and get new needles (I like the metal dpn's and our $ store sells them here - shocking I know! I buy $2 needles. I nearly had a stroke when I saw how much the Addi's cost when I wanted to try the Magic Loop)

Seems like everyone is making Monkey these days. Can't wait to see yours, the colourway is great.