I currently have no knitting deadlines...or at least the deadlines are still so far away (like Christmas) that I don't yet have a sense of urgency. I had my swap item deadline; my Tour de France KAL deadline; and my gift scarves deadlines. All expired. All past. So, I've returned to some socks I was knitting. These socks missed their birthday gift deadline, which was in June. Shame.
They're the Retro Rib Socks by Evelyn A. Clark, now in Favorite Socks, but originally published in the Winter 2004 issue of Interweave Knits. As suggested by the name, they have a nerdish retro quality about them; a fussy, repetitive, regular pattern. Very neat. The yarn is Araucania Ranco in a deep rust-red with some variegation. I'm a bit nervous about the possibility of this wool's felting, but I'm enjoying the pattern, the colour and the texture and if they felt, so be it! I'm still planning to give them to the friend whose birthday they missed, as she spends long hours in her concrete-floored workshop, and they'll be warm and cushiony - even if they do felt.
I'm delighted by the nifty needle holder in the photograph. It's two cylinders that fit one inside the other - each with a slit along one side. The needles are encased within the cylinders, and the sock-in-progress emerges from the slits fitted one over the other. Miss Fee found them somewhere on the web and supplied me with them - I love using them. No more fossicking for lost dpns down the side of the sofa cushions.
The fabric under the socks is a hand-woven ikat from West Timor - a gift from a good friend about 30 years ago. I've used it as a shawl, a scarf and table runner from time to time, and over the years the natural dyes have faded from bright red to dull rust. Ikats are so beautiful.