The slippers are now finished!
The "decoration" is an extremely subtle bit of long-armed cross stitch over the edge of the sides and back - so subtle that you can hardly see it (hence the lack of a photo). In one of those boxes full of the bits and pieces that all habitual makers of things keep, were 2 skeins of coton a broder in almost the exact shade of my felt, but with a slight sheen. It is fairly thick, so I thought it wouldn't take long, but it actually took hours, as I had to place the needle very carefully every time, and it's one of those 2-steps-forward-and-1-back sort of stitches. But it firms up the edge nicely, and gives it some protection.
The soles have been bugging me all along. The felt needed something to protect it from wear and dirt, and on its own would slide beautifully on the kitchen tiles. Lots and lots of boxes got pulled out in the workroom, and the needlework detritus of 40 years of my hoarding (plus an unknown number of years of my mother's hoarding) was subjected to a good rummaging. (I found a heap of stuff I'd forgotten, but don't tell DH.) Some leather scraps rose to the surface; nothing big enough to use, but that set me off in another direction.
I don't often browse the car section of the supermarket, but yesterday I was hunting for "chamois leather". They had real chamois, which I didn't fancy, partly from the veggie angle, and partly from the maintenance angle - it dries out and cracks, as any old-time cyclist will tell you. Then in a wonderfully chaotic and old-fashioned ironmongers, I found an artificial chamois leather, intended for cleaning windows, which has been cut up and sewn to my felt. The world's only window-cleaning slippers?
Note to self - if you ever make felt slippers again, make sure to design the soles first. And last night DH found purpose-made slipper soles on the website of my favourite knitting shop!
But today I have been grappling with a different problem.
The local Guild of Spinners, Weavers and Dyers currently has an exhibition of work at a local museum, and on Saturday there is an Open Day, when some of us will demonstrate various spinning, etc. activities. I am due to demonstrate knitting - don't laugh, I'm doing that myself. In between panicking, that is.
It seems to me that it might be more interesting to the non-knitting public if I have a variety of projects to show, so I have been doing some planning. There's a lacy scarf about half finished in purple merino. I can easily cast on a Fair Isle hat with some white and pink Wensleydale wool from the stash (Wensleydale comes in wool as well as cheese), and perhaps I could start off a pair of socks with the yellow soy/Blue Faced Leicester from last week.
This yarn is much finer than I've used before for socks. So for a start I need to calculate what size needles to use and how many stitches to cast on. Then I've read just recently about a way of making toes with short rows, so I want to try that - the heels can be done with the same method. I've scribbled about 6 lines of notes in my little notebook, for a pattern. I've spent all afternoon fiddling about with trying different needles and different ways of starting and doing the toes. At the moment I have the start of a sock, but that may not last.
But it's great fun to experiment, and ask *Is there another way to do that* or *What happens if....* or *What about trying....*