Endings and beginnings


I am now the slightly puzzled owner of a pair of pinkish socks. As I’ve said before I hate pink, have done for years. But I don’t hate these. I don’t love them, but they intrigue me. Time and again I’ve found myself examining them closely, studying the way the colours blend and contrast. Some shades of pink are shudder almost attractive in combination with bronze and peach and many other shades of orange/pink/brown I haven’t names for.
Pattern: Badcaul, from bought from Amelia
Yarn: Fleece Artist sock merino in Jester, on 2mm needles.
Comments: I changed the pattern. It calls for 60sts, but my first socks made in the same yarn (different colour) on the same needles were almost too tight with 62? sts, so I increased the circumference to 68st, using the extra to run another small cable down the centre front and back. Looking at the finished result I’d do it differently if I had it to do again, perhaps by running a rib between a couple of the cables instead. These socks fit nicely on my foot and leg, but they’re really too tight on the diagonal from the corner? point? of my heel to the inside angle of my ankle, as shown here.

So. Clearly one reason for knitting socks is to have socks that fit. On the treadmill this morning I thought of ways to make elegant increases before the heel and decreasing after it to increase the circumference here. Then I remembered reading something, somewhere about doing something with the gusset of heelflap socks to adjust for this sort of thing, and decided that my next sock for me will be a ‘class sock’ exploring toe-up heelflaps. The next *socks* will be for D, according to the sizes on her Sock Token. Rib seems safer than stockinette, as it allows more stretch to fit a strange (as in unfamiliar) foot. I mean, they may also be strange in the sense of peculiar, but I haven’t seen them so how would I know?

Another ending, in fact the entire story condensed for ease of reading. I’d like to introduce you to the other organisms that I’m happy to have in our house:

These are my little friends, the yeasts and bacteria of my sourdough starter. It’s relatively young, only a few months old, a replacement for one that succumbed to a fatal combination of neglect, hot weather and an invasion of unwanted bacteria late last year. At about 9pm last night I fried some onions in olive oil until golden, combined these with light rye flour and a cup of starter and left the combination to its own devices while we slept. It had risen beautifully by this morning, when I added more flour, a little commercial yeast (because the kitchen is cold and I need the bread for tomorrow) and the rest of the ingredients. Three hours later I had this
which turned out (literally) like this about 2.5hrs later. I wasn’t quite as gentle with the one on back left as I should have been…
and 28 minutes after that I had this.

Onion Rye. It’s got the true sourdough tang, but not too strong. I might take a loaf to Pilates tonight to see if the instructor can be bribed to give us an easy lesson. I can post the recipe if anyone’s interested, with instructions on how to build your very own sourdough starter. It’s not difficult but, like other things involving yeast, it takes some time. The yeasts’ time, but you’ve got to be there for them when they need you.

Another beginning: this is the start, three rows in, of Seraphim^2. That’s ‘squared’, as in four corners rather than three. On 2.5mm needles (magic loop rather than DPN). Am I being foolish? Only time and effort will tell.

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3 thoughts on “Endings and beginnings

  1. Alice

    I still haven’t tried the other bread recipe you gave me but the reason is really because I don’t have any of the extra kitchen equipment I need (I know, I know, but I’m still really skint!). If I could just decide to make some bread and do it right there and then, I’d be more likely to try.That onion rye looks so rustically attractive (and sounds tasty). Are those special bread-making bowls? How pleasing they are.Thing is, if I made the bread, I’d be likely to eat most of it one go.I have had the same “tightness” problem as you with some of my socks, as my ankles are skinny but the rest of the foot isn’t. I’ll be watching for your elegantly-executed solution.If anyone asked, I’d say I wasn’t particularly enamoured of pink and yet I seem to choose it for knitting and decorating (in deeper shades) as though I’m obsessed with it. Obviously I like your socks. One of my fave combinations is varying shades of pink and orange together.

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  2. Jo

    I’ve been reading, and enjoying, your blog for some time now. Your knitting is beautiful, and I’d LOVE to get the sourdough starter recipe from you. The bread looks terrific!

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  3. sarah

    Crumbs, Jo. I’m glad only the cats were here to see the foolish grin that spread across my face when I read that. Sometimes I think my knitting IS beautiful (down, ego, down), sometimes I only see the mistakes. I’ll start amassing photos for an introduction to sourdough, then. It’ll take a couple of weeks or so to build a starter from scratch for the photos. But you’re worth it! There’s that foolish grin again…

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