Sunday, 6 September 2020

Knitting myself in Knots

An update on the hand since I was last here...
I turned up for my scheduled surgery having had nil by mouth for 12 hours to find I wasn't on the list for the day. During the long wait to find out what was happening, a young lad with an identical injury to mine asked me if I had broken my hand fighting. Being rather alarmed that I looked the sort of person who might sustain an injury due to fisticuffs I explained 'my fall' but wish I had told a little white lie. It probably would have made his day to have met a boxing granny! Eventually I got to see the surgeon for him to tell me he didn't think I needed surgery after all, which was actually a relief, although probably quite convenient given I'd been missed off the schedule. I didn't really want anyone cutting my hand open so I didn't mind. Apparently there is a slightly higher risk of me breaking it again without a pin so it means my fighting days are over but I reckon I can live with that.


The cumbersome cast was removed and replaced by a splint with some pretty snazzy purple strapping, allowing some freedom of movement in my forefinger and thumb. The world was my oyster with such a nimble pincer movement, although I soon discovered picking up anything heavier than a jigsaw piece was pretty much impossible.


Much as I appreciated being lent the jigsaws, after finishing the second one I really had scaled the heights of boredom. I couldn't cope with this for another four weeks. Spying some knitting that had been languishing on the needles for the past six months I had a mad idea. This was the first of a pair of Latvian mittens that I offered to knit for a friend who didn't understand the pattern. I didn't like to tell her that I didn't understand the pattern either, so this was about the third reincarnation of mitten no. one which was why it had been abandoned. There were just about six rows left on the thumb and it would be finished. What if I could adapt my pincer movement to knitting? I found by supporting the knitting with my left hand I could grab the yarn and wrap it around the needle with my thumb and finger of the broken hand. It was slow, it was cumbersome, but I could do it and after about three nights I finished the first mitt whilst watching endless episodes of the Fruity Knitting podcast.  In fact I have learned so much about knitting during those few rounds of the mitten thumb I think I now sort of understand the pattern and the second mitt will be a doddle. Well it might be once I can use my hand properly again. At least I have cast on and I'm ready to go.


Inspired my my mitten success I thought I would practise on something a little less fiddly and found a kit I bought last year from my lovely friend Lucy Locket for a hot water bottle cover. Except it wasn't less fiddly and in fact was cast on over two circular needles creating a seamless bag, something I had never done before. But my technique has improved and I can now even support the right hand needle in my right hand... and all that thumb twiddling is proving to be excellent physio.


So now I have a lovely new hot water bottle cover which I don't really need but that's beside the point!


Something else I have discovered I can do with just a finger and thumb is press those buttons that say 'buy now' and I seem to have purchased several more balls of yarn for the literally hundreds more knitting projects that I'm planning. I don't like to do things by half... I'm all or nothing me.


In between all the knitting planning, knitting watching and knitting doing I've also found time to record the final videos for my next online class "Free machine fun - drawing with the needle". Some of my stitching is a bit wonky but I can draw better with the sewing machine than I can with a pencil so it has all worked out quite well and is a lovely introduction to free machine embroidery for the beginner or anyone wanting to brush up their skills. You can find out more about it here if you are interested:


So that's my news for the past couple of weeks. I've still got another week or so of wearing this splint so plenty of time to discover more skills... which funnily enough don't include cooking, washing up, vacuuming, ironing etc. But I think I can cope with that.

 

13 comments:

  1. I'm gutted for you re the boxing Gina, that must be such a blow (pun intended) for you! :)
    I must say that's pretty impressive knitting despite your injury!!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I have no patience with 'difficult' knitting patterns so am in awe of your perseverance especially when 'wounded'. Jigsaws are a great diversion but I find them exhausting as I get more and more hunched over them trying to find 'that' piece! Hope the rest of the time will pass quickly for you.

    ReplyDelete
  3. The hot water bottle cover is a thing of beauty. So glad you didn't need surgery in the end and that things are on the mend. You could indeed have made up a fantastic fight story. My eldest had a cast recently leaving his thumb free. Sadly, he couldn't wash or wipe up, but it worked fine on a laptop. I hope you're out of the strapping very soon and back to full strength. I understand you may find weight-lifting tricky for a couple of weeks :) CJ xx

    ReplyDelete
  4. I love that hot water bottle cover, it is a thing of beauty. I am impressed that you managed to find a way to knit with a broken hand.

    Seeing those colours in your hot water bottle together (I have some very similar shades in my stash) makes me wonder whether I do have the yarn to make a hat I have my eye on after all. That might just have to be my next project.....thank you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you! I'm quite enjoying just stroking the hot water bottle cover and enjoying its softness. My next projects are going to be hats for all our children and partners...that will be their Christmas presents sorted!

      Delete
  5. How much more fun to do your physio, and have a knitted result to show for it!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Gina you are INCREDIBLE! I just knew you would never manage to do nothing, no matter what the circumstances! I really hope your recovery progresses smoothly. Take care. T x

    ReplyDelete
  7. Oh my! Just catching up. You are so productive and creative. I really should get the knitting needles out in the evenings. It would work in the caravan that we are staying in at the moment. I love the hot water bottle too.

    Latvian gloves are amazing - there are so many patterns it is incredible. You can read a bit more about them here
    https://www.hobbywool.com/#home

    ReplyDelete
  8. Glad you’ve found a way to while away the hours. Thank goodness for knitting I say. Love the pattern on both the mittens and the hot water bottle cover. Hope your wrist heals quickly. B x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Knitting has been a life saver! And because I'm having to go slowly my fairisle technique is definitely improving, although I'm now itching to try two handed fairisle!

      Delete
  9. Well done for managing all the knitting. I can't manouevre three needles with fully functioning hands. By the way, that purple really suits you.

    ReplyDelete
  10. There's no stopping you Gina - even with a broken hand! Great mittens and a wonderfully cosy looking hot water bottle cover.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Dear Gina,
    I think that you have the identical injury that I had a few years ago - spiral fracture of 4th finger on right hand - also caused by falling over, not boxing alas. Spent the next day at hospital only to be told that surgery not needed. Physio was a long, and sometimes uncomfortable, process but pleased to say completely back to normal now with only a 'flat' knuckle and a bump on the back of my hand to show for it. Wishing you a speedy recovery and a return to all things creative. Best wishes, Michelle

    ReplyDelete

I love getting your comments and I love to read what you have to say so thank you for taking the time! I reply when I can by email... or if you are a no reply blogger, then I sometimes post a reply in the comments.