Wednesday, 14 January 2009


That most nightmare of technological scenarios befell me on Wednesday night: the hard drive error. I got home from WNK, hit the return key to wake my laptop from its slumbers, and... nothing. In fact, it switched itself off. Strange. Then it repeatedly tried to start up, never quite making it. I knew exactly what had happened, because the drive had thrown up error after error since I bought the thing, but I carried on regardless, and did I back up? Well, sort of, just not as regularly as I should have. So it was soon ascertained that I was the owner of a useless lump of plastic, metal and silicon, and potentially no longer the owner of quite a few photos and knitting patterns. Thankfully my dear knight in shining armour was stubborn enough to spend the next four days fiddling with components from Maplin and software from off the internet, and eventually managed to read off the data, so nothing lost and not too much money spent in saving it. He's a genius. I now have to order a new hard drive to get my laptop up and running again, but at least my stuff is safe.

So two New Year's Resolutions to add to the list:
  • Back up, back up, back up, not less than every two weeks.
  • Get blogging on the stuff I thought I might have lost, and generally blog faster, so everything I want to keep is uploaded.
The benefit of all of this was that I got some knitting done whilst I was bereft of the distractions of the internet.

Firstly, the stripy "Blood & Bone" socks from my own hand-dyed yarn are finished! I am so pleased with them.

As detailed here, the yarn is Knitpicks Bare for the striping sections, and The Yarn Yard Bonny for the contrast heel/toe/cuff, all dyed with Kool Aid. It's a toe-up stocking stitch sock, 64 stitches on 2.5mm needles for a UK size 6, with my usual toe, Sherman heel and 2x2 twisted rib cuff. I had loads of yarn left over, as they only used 51g (ie half) of the Knitpicks and 19g (less than half) of the Bonny. I could, and probably should, have made long boot socks, but I don't have the patience for the relentless knitting involved or the subtleties of calf shaping. The extra has therefore found a good home to be made into more socks.

I asked the boyfriend to take the photos for me, on a break from IT repairs, as I was fed up with trying to take good photos of my own feet. Once we'd done the above "technical" photos, showing the contrast bits and construction, I thought we should dress them up a bit with my current favourite shiny black shoes, so it was into the garden to take advantage of the weak winter sun.

Thankfully none of our neighbours were around to see this silliness.

Having finished those, I moved onto a deadline job. Tomorrow is my father's 60th birthday and I thought he deserved a luxurious, warm hat for out on the golf course or when he's working on his motorbike. In my stash I had two skeins of bulky cashmere from School Products in New York (the trip on which this was acquired is one of the things I nearly lost the photos of, and must blog soon) and that seemed perfect. It's black, but a fairly washed-out, flecky black. It is very soft and lovely. The hat itself is just a 4x2 rib, 72 stitches on 6mm needles, decreasing for the last few rounds. It took me two evenings, and was finished just in time to make the post down to Bournemouth. Seeing as the finish and immediate wrapping was late at night, I had no photographic help and had to do the traditional Myspace dirty mirror photos.

I sustained a small knitting injury from this as it seems, at that particular gauge, my left index fingernail hits my right first knuckle at every stitch. By two-thirds of the way through the hat, I was bleeding, and had to wear a plaster for the rest. I'm sure I've never had that before but will have to alter my technique if it starts to be a problem.

That done, I can now start the Leyburn socks for the KAL from my last post, so will, in fact, go and do so now.

Remember, back up, people, back up!

No comments: