Monday, 2 May 2011

Costuming – The Knitters Scarf

Before last year, I had not really knitted anything in my life. I was content in creating replica costumes of great television series such as Robin of Sherwood and historic costumes such as Vikings and medieval life. 

Then one day while watching, yes you got it, an episode of Doctor Who, I looked at Tom’s rather fine scarf. It was then my husband showed his love for the season twelve scarf and I thought it would be an interesting challenge to see if I could also make a replica of it.

First stop was to look on the internet and of film footage at every available scene which had that particular scarf in it. Finally we had taken snap shots and also found help on the internet for colour matches. 

The next stop was down to the wool shops and hobby craft to see if we could match up the wools as closely as possible. What we found was that the colour in certain light was different so all in all we had to best guess it.

Then came the choice of needles. I had no idea which needle was needed or even that there were so many to choose from. I decided to go for a set of needles which had the line in-between for ease of knitting and asked advice on what dimension they required for the wool I wanted to use. The lady in the wool shop was very helpful.

That very evening I researched how many lines per colour was required and started to learn, again from the internet, how to cast on. I admit that there were a few blue words which came out of my mouth until I had created all the stitches required. 

Slowly but surely, and not more than four holes in total, the scarf came into being. I remember how I felt frustrated at how slow I was, due to the complete armature behind those clicking needles and also down to the RSI which had started in my thumbs.

However, I am a very stubborn lady, yes I can hear hubby now agreeing, and I continued to knit my way through the scarf. It helped by having Doctor Who running on the DVD player in front of me which gave me the encouragement to continue.

Then four months later, and fingers and wrists hurting badly because of the tension I had administered to the poor needles, my work was done. The scarf now adorns our living room door, ready for every time my husband wishes to wear it with his rather fine Tom Baker costume!

But the story does not end there. Last February I had another thought, whilst watching Tom yet again and admiring his season eighteen scarf, I wondered if a time lady such as myself would look good in such a ostentatious scarf of vibrant colour and length.

So once more I set to investigating the colours and the pattern from as many sources as possible. I found that the colours had almost been discontinued and the only place to buy them was from the States.

Wonderful, I thought, I can have them shipped to the UK. Ah no, things are never so easy. It turned out that the very colours I needed from one place could not, or would not, be shipped to little old England!

Biting back my frustration I looked around for help. It so happened that there was a lady in the States which my husband had recently been in contact with via Twitter who was a creative sort of person. To my joy she agreed to help with the purchase and the shipping of the hard to find colours, after which I of course paid happily.

The Postman came about two to three weeks later with a very large bundle. Perfect! The needles had to be a different size so I popped down to the wool shop once more and purchased the correct size. Then whisked myself home to start the scarf in earnest.

I am happy to say that currently I have completed up to seven foot in length and so far, crossing fingers, the pain of RSI has not re-occurred due to the fact I have learnt how to hold the needles correctly.

If there is a moral to this knitter’s story, then it is this – Never give up on a project, as the project will always be there until it is completed. 

Until next time...

Article by @GallifreyLady

1 comment:

  1. I knitted one of the original scarf for my boyfriend earlier this year after joining a knitting group of my college friends. The finished scarf was 12 ft. and I love it so much I steal it often. You should check out for support, yarn dealers, and tons of free patterns. In the meantime, just keep watching Doctor Who. Lots and lots of Doctor Who ...