Christmas in July

24 mini socks lie drying in two rows on white foam mats. A larger sock is at the bottom right. The socks are a mix of solid colours, stripes and colour blocks in various combinations of four yarns; purple, pink, red and multicoloured.

The Mini Socks Advent Calendar is almost complete! The socks are knitted, the ends are woven in, the hanging loops have been crocheted and sewn on (and more ends woven in) and they have all had a nice relaxing bath. The measurements and gauge have been taken, the pattern is written up and checked and I’ve decided what order I’m going to hang them in.

A close up of the mini socks drying in two rows on white foam mats. 10 are visible. A larger sock is at the bottom right. The socks are a mix of solid colours, stripes and colour blocks in various combinations of four yarns; purple, pink, red and multicoloured.
Kath Andrews Mini Socks Advent Calendar close-up

Although there are twelve pairs of socks I have decided not to hang them in pairs, but instead following the sequence: solid-striped-colour block. And overlaid on that is another sequence following the colours of the cuffs; red-pink-multi-purple up to the halfway point and then reversed. I like it, but if you make the advent calendar you can hang them in any order you prefer! You could even hang them all separately on a Christmas tree to make the hunt more of a challenge.

All I need now is for the small round kraft labels to arrive so I can tie the numbers on to the hanging loops and string the whole thing together with ribbon and hang it up for some proper photos!

The kits are prepped – I’ll have seven with me at the Pop-up Wool Show – three in the colourway shown, two in a blue/green/purple/multi combo, one in just red and cream and one in blue and cream. All using West Yorkshire Spinners ColourLab DK, with the multicoloured yarns being two of the Zandra Rhodes special colourways.

The Mini Socks Advent Calendar takes 200g of DK yarn and I was able to get the larger Day 25 bonus pattern out of that amount as well, though it might be a push if your gauge is looser.

Kits will be £20 to include the yarn, a printed copy of the pattern, stitch markers and a cotton project bag. The pattern will also be available on its own as it makes a great stash buster!

A small hand knitted sock in stripes of blue, pink and white lies on a pale gold carpet.
Kath Andrews Tipton Sock

I’ve been on a bit of a sock flurry! This is Tipton. It’s small because this version was actually a swatch for a submission, but it’s intended as an adult sized sock. While it wasn’t chosen to be part of the collection I submitted it for, I do like it and have decided to work on the pattern for self-publication. This sample swatch was knitted with CoopKnits Socks Yeah! I’ve had the colours for ages and think they’re now discontinued, so I will need to go on a yarn hunt (what a shame…!) for current yarns in these colours. I’ll tell you more about Tipton another time.

A cross-stitch in progress showing a variety of pride flags
Safe Space by Peppermint Purple in progress

My cross stitch is coming on. Safe Space by Peppermint Purple is a fab design that comes in both cross stitch and blackwork versions and includes a huge variety of pride flags. 50% of the profits from the pattern go to Stonewall as well. Can you see any similarity between one of the flags and Tipton?

An embroidery in progress re-creating a b&w photo of my mum in her twenties
Photo Embroidery of Mum in progress

My intention to complete four more colours this month is stalled – partly as I’m currently working on one of the most prevalent colours. It’s a dark grey which is almost indistinguishable from the black and it’s not easy going on the eyes. I’ve found a good solution to help me not lose my place on the chart in between stitching sessions though – a small post-it with an arrow drawn on it pointing at the last stitch I worked. Using magnetic strips wouldn’t help much with this one as the colours jump around so very much. I think I’ve done more on Safe Space instead as it can be worked without reference to the chart for every single stitch!

A close up of a stranded hand knitted cowl in progress. Main colour is dark red. Black is used for purl stitches in the corrugated ribbing and the morse code poem
Kath Andrews Morse Code Cowl 2

Do you remember the red and black yarn I purchased from The Travel Knitter at the RiverKnits Open Day? It’s halfway to becoming a stranded cowl. The Morse Code Cowl, as I have called it, has one of my lovely wife’s poems translated into Morse code and then converted into a knitting chart. That was a LOT of work, before I could even cast on! But it’s coming on. I am most pleased with the section that isn’t Morse code – the part that will say “Poem, Sue Finch“:

The other side of the hand knitted cowl in progress, showing the poet's name - Sue Finch - worked in black on a dark red background.
Kath Andrews Morse Code Cowl 1

The link on her name will take you to her publishers where you can read some reviews of her first collection, Magnifying Glass. (And you can buy it if you like what you read!).

The last pic I’m going to share with you is one of those roses I rescued last week. They still look might fine in their bowl of water! The orange has changed to a more pinkish shade now and they’ve opened up, completely filling the bowl. It was a really good way to save what otherwise looked like a bunch of flowers destined for the compost.

A glass bowl filled with nine rose heads floating in water. They are orange shading to pink in the centres.
The rescued roses – one week on!

Take care one and all, and look after the folks around you as well as yourselves. And, if you can, go knit something – maybe plan ahead a little!

One thought on “Christmas in July

  1. Oh my Kath, industrious as ever and the never too early to mention the ‘ C’ word although it can cause a major panic attack at the same time. Love the advent socks and no sign of any grey . Hallelujah!

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