Sunday, 22 July 2012

The Final Ride on the Champs Elysee

And so, as Bradley Wiggins rode on the Champs Elysee to claim victory as the first ever British rider to win the Tour de France, three weeks of knitting also comes to an end.  Like Bradley, I decided I too wanted to win the yellow jersey and chose my projects carefully.

First on the needles was Summit, an interesting wrap destined to be a friend's 80th birthday present. The lilac Galaxy being the perfect yarn. After doing an entire section of right leaning rows, I then decided to cast on my second project - a self-designed crescent shawl, using an ball of Mirage DK I had in my stash. Everything was going smoothly. No bumps in my opening time trial.

Day two brought an unexpected bump in the road. A party invitation for 28th July. Now, as we know, the weather has left rather a lot to be desired recently, so I decided I needed a new sweater. This sweater, to be precise. And added it as a third project for the Tour. As I'm not overkeen on blocking, I chose the Big Value 4ply in Damson, this way I could steam block each piece to size and never have to worry about it in the future. Cast on commenced as the riders took to the first stage on the road. By day six, the back, front and first sleeve were complete. I was knitting to victory! Or so I thought. A major crash occurred 10 rows before the end of the second sleeve. I dropped a stitch and as I attempted to pick it up, more stitches fell off the needles until I was left with a tangled mess.

Wine was drunk and I decided to leave it all until the next day, when I ended up casting on that second sleeve not once, not twice but five times and still couldn't get it right! Finally, on day eight I managed to cast on, get it right and finished the second sleeve with just the collar to do. As the second week got underway, the collar was finished and here's the result.

Of course, the sleeves and collar (blocking as I type) need to be sewn on, but not a bad result for just over a week, I think.

As the second week got properly underway, the self-design was picked up again. A little bit of tinking was done, then off we went. Two days later, it was finished and ready to steam block (and yes, it does still need steam blocking!).

Which left only Summit. And only one (of four) balls of yarn worked. As I picked it up again, I realised that although a lovely pattern, it can be rather tedious. I thought I would crash on the mountains of boredom. But no, I managed the entire cast off

just as Mark Cavendish was launched up the Champs Elysee for the last kilometre and win the final stage, for a historic fourth time. What a finish! Well done Cav, and congratulations to Bradley Wiggins for being the first British cyclist to win the Tour de France.

June x

No comments:

Post a Comment