Autumn 2013

Autumn 2013

Sunday, January 20, 2013


Hello, everybody, and welcome once again to the Apple Basket! I hope you’ve had a wonderful week; I have been knitting and writing quite a bit, mostly fiction. So this time it will be short & sweet: just a quick update, impressions from the week gone by, and no pics, since the weather has been mostly dismal and the light not ideal for photography.

So, winter has settled here; chilling, Siberian air masses are moving down over the country, and the temperature has not been above freezing, zero degrees Celsius, for over a week now. Luckily, it’s not windy; otherwise it would be really cold. The meteorologists are beginning to consider if this winter might come to qualify as an ice-winter. Now, the official definition of an ice-winter is that the icy conditions in the straits is so disruptive to traffic that the state’s ice-breaker ships need to work for at least one day. That definition, however, is old and becoming out-dated, since modern steel vessels are tougher than wooden sailing ships and thus can deal with thicker ice on their own.
Instead, they are working with a ‘cold sum’, for which every day with a middle temperature below freezing scores a point for every degree below freezing. So, one day with a middle temperature of -2° C equals two points, three days with a middle temperature of -1° C equals three points, &c. Based on the sums from previous winters, they reckon that an ice-winter has a sum of at least 150 cold points.
A high number of cold points does not automatically constitute an ice-winter according to the classic definition, though, and there have been examples of problems with ice even though the winter was not exceptionally cold. So, all in all, the modern number-based definition seems to make more sense.
And, by the way, the cold sum reached 37 on 17th January, and they expect it to reach 71 by the end of the month.

I have been working away on my flip-top mittens, and since I am constructing them and writing the pattern up as I go along, it did take a while. Every time I go out, I miss those mittens! The first mitten was finished on Thursday, though, and I knew that the second mitten would be much quicker to knit than the first, now that I was done with all the tentative knitting, trying on, ripping back and re-knitting to get the perfect fit. So by then, it was only a matter of straightforward knitting; I even test knit my own pattern.
I made rather long, tip-less fingers because I always get cold, and a hood to go over the fingers and knuckles, so this way my fingers apart from the very tips will be wearing two layers of tightly knit wool. The thumb is hooded, as well.
The top-down approach makes for excellent fitting opportunities: I can try on each part of the mittens and immediately know how it is going to sit on my hand.

I am planning at some point to release the pattern, probably after including a larger size or two. My hands are quite small, so the pair I am making now is in an EU size 7. Maybe Victor will want a pair (my other two boys already have flip-tops) – that way I will be making the calculations for a size 10.
Or maybe not. Judging from the look on his face when he saw the above, I think not.

I am currently watching Dexter, the 2006 TV series about the killer of serial killers. What I am noticing – apart from the blood and body parts, of course – are the girlfriend Rita’s cardigans. In nearly every scene, she is wearing cute, lacy cardigans over summer dresses or tops. Of course, it being Miami, the weather is always summery, at least seen from a Scandinavian perspective.
So here I am, with - 6° outside and snow on the ground, daydreaming about lacy cardigans and floral dresses. I even looked through my stash to see what fingering weight cotton I have ...

Oh well, I guess it will be some kind of summer at some point; though for now, I am happy knitting with wool.
The Georgia cardigan is nearly finished: I started the second sleeve this afternoon. Which means that I get to go and find buttons soon ...

My next little project will be a secret thing that I will tell you about later, and then socks for Victor – no mittens, apparently.

So, that’s it for this week – I will be back next week with more, and pictures. Until then: have a great week, and Happy Knitting!

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