February Guest Post :: Sabrina ::

Dear Laura and Annie,

As you both know, I’ve come rather late to the crafting revolution. I’ve always been an avid cook, once attempted to knit a scarf when I was 13 and have fond memories of textiles at school (I decided, rather ambitiously, to make a dress for Juliet to wear for the ball scene in Romeo and Juliet for my textiles GCSE. I distinctly remember my poor mother sewing up the hem at 11pm the night before it was due in. Mind you, my Dad at the same time was putting the finishing touches to my electronic game for CDT…)

But it was only last summer, on holiday in America visiting a good friend of mine, that I learnt how to knit and was quickly taken by the bug.

I may have got in on the act a little late, but I’ve definitely been making up for lost time since. Two pairs of baby booties, two baby scarves, one baby hat, an adult scarf, a shark, a baby cardigan and, more bizarrely, a knitted dog draft excluder later, I decided over Christmas that it was time to really test myself and embarked upon a lace scarf for my Granny.

Granny W moved into an old people’s home recently. All of her possessions were divvied up from her home and I inherited a huge roll of knitting needles. Wanting to make her something with these, I spent hours on Ravelry, flicking through patterns to find something appropriate.

My granny is quite a classy lady – my favourite photo of her shows her descending the steps of an aeroplane in the first year that passenger flights took off. She’s dressed in the best of 1940s chic fashion, her hair is jet red (though you can’t see it in the black-and-white photo) and my grandfather alongside is sporting a panama.

So I wanted something quite elegant, and was delighted when I stumbled across this pattern by Susan Lawrence called Branching Out.

Having only made a very quick-to-knit simple ribbed scarf before, I started my project on Christmas Day, pretty certain I would have it finished by Boxing Day. Yesterday, four weeks later, I finally sewed in the loose ends and pinned it out to be blocked.

I have to say, along with taking so very long, I also found this one of the most frustrating knitting projects I’ve done so far. If I stopped concentrating – especially at the beginning – for just one little second I would completely lose my place, my stitch, my row, and before I knew it I had totally the wrong number of stitches and massive holes where there shouldn’t have been any.

But, now, looking at the end result, I am inordinately proud of the finished product. If you’re eagle-eyed, you can probably see one mistake in there which I didn’t manage to rectify. But when I showed it to my Mum she said “Oh how lovely, it looks like a rose in the middle of all those branches…” And now I’m back to knitting a much simpler ribbed snood, I am already planning my next lace project…

Happy 2011 to you both, here’s to a crafty year.

Oh and Laura, I was hoping that in a blog post sometime soon, you could give some hints and tips on how to make photos of knitting look nice! I can assure you, my little lace scarf is even more beautiful in the flesh than in these pics…

Lots of love


Edited to add: Sabrina is running the London Marathon for the first time in April. She's running in memory of her son Max, and is raising money for a really great charity called Cardiac Risk in the Young. It's a fantastic cause, so please do sponsor her if you'd like to. You can do so here. L & A x

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