Sunday, August 24, 2014

Travel and cruising and knitting

I'm off travelling again. After years of being condescendingly dismissive of cruises as a travel experience, I've now given in and have signed up for a cruise. I only have knitting to blame for the situation I find myself in. My desire to improve my colourwork knitting led me to browse websites of classes by modern colourwork guru Mary Jane Mucklestone. I discovered she was giving classes on a ship travelling across the north Atlantic. Then I discovered the destinations - from Copenhagen to Bergen in Norway, the Shetland Isles, the Faroe Islands (the Faroes! - my current fantasy travel destination), Iceland, Greenland, Newfoundland and Nova Scotia in Canada, and finally, New York. Lots of my travel and knitting obsessions in one trip.

So, after the usual nightmare of flying from Sydney to anywhere in Europe I'm now in Copenhagen for a couple of days before my cruise. 'My cruise'. I never thought I'd need to write that.

Denmark Copenhagen Nyhavn

Despite the fact that it's late summer in Copenhagen the weather is uncannily similar to what I left in Sydney's winter - squalls of rain, wind, sunny patches and a maximum temperature of around 17 celsius. Nevertheless, Copenhagen is wonderful. Very civilised.

A trip is also an excuse for knitting. Again, despite the fact that it's summer, it will be cold in most of the places I'm visiting and I persuded myself I really needed some fingerless mitts. I used some Noro Silk Garden from my yarn collection and after a couple of day's very simple knitting I had my mitts:

unmatched mitts 4

I think one of the joys of knitting with Noro is the unexpectedness of the colour combinations and sequences. I have a kind of informal personal knitting rule for Noro which is to simply accept whatever colour comes my way as I'm knitting with it. In this case I not only have a pair of nicely slouchy mitts, but they're totally unmatched. They have the added benefit of matching - to the extent that this is ever possible with Noro - a Zumthor hat I knitted a couple of winters ago.

Unmatched mitts and tree

[Thanks to Margarita for the fun photos].

I also decided I needed a kind of between seasons scarf for the wide range of temperatures and climates I'll have on this trip. (You can never have too many scarves). Again, this was a very simple knit with bands of stocking stitch and reverse stocking stitch alternating diagonally across the scarf. Most appropriately, the pattern is 'Groovy'.

groovy scarf 4

I've knitted the scarf from 100% linen. After finishing it I washed the scarf quite vigorously to make the linen softer. I decided not to block the scarf but rather to dry it in a way that preserved its grooves. I'm very happy with the outcome. I'll report back on its usefulness.


Rose Red said...

I am SO ENVIOUS of your cruise - all those fabulous destinations.
In case you need reminding, when it comes to yarn purchasing:
(A) buy it
(B) yarn bought while travelling is a souvenir, therefore doesn't count
(C) grey is your colour
(D) mustardy yellow is your colour
(E) it doesn't hurt to go outside your usual colour palette if the yarn is really beautiful
(F) buy it
(G) always buy an extra skein
(H) and finally, buy it!

lynnie003 said...

So envious of your travelling I am sure it will be fantastic
ending up in New York my favourite destination
Enjoy your cruise, knit your little heart away

Sonia said...

It sounds like a really great trip to me! Enjoy :) … and buy yarn…

Brendaknits said...

Oh my gosh! What a wonderful time you will have. And even though you will be about 3000 K from where I live -welcome to Canada. You will see Fleece Artist Yarns and Briggs & Little in Nova Scotia, I'm sure. Have a wonderful time.

Anonymous said...

I'm all in favour of knitting tourism, and one day (but it won't be soon) I might learn to trust the Noro.

Unknown said...

What beautiful photos of both Copenhagen and scarves/mitts/hats. You will have such fun with your eye for beauty and for the unusual.
I LOVE dipping into your blog and delighting in all you are doing. Barb