HAVING FUN WITH LEG-WARMERS

It’s high summer. My garden is in full bloom. The children are playing barefoot on the lawn late into the evening. I wait all year for this. But lo. What is this falling through my letterbox and landing with an ominous thud on the doormat. Could it be the sound of Autumn/Winter catalogues arriving?

I should know better than to look. Instead of anticipating what comes next, I should be enjoying what we have now. But I can’t help it. The lure of cable knit sweaters is too much. So I have a little peak. After all, what harm can it do? It’s not like I’m wishing away my beloved summer or anything. And what do I see? Girls in jeans and boots with long-length cardigans and tousled scarves. And leg-warmers.

I’m slightly ashamed to admit that I’ve always been quite attracted to leg-warmers. Even in the 80s, when they were only worn by fitness freaks, Fame wanabees and Bucks Fizz, I really fancied a pair. And here they were, in my new catalogue. I want some. I need some. I am absolutely not paying £36 for some.

I know. I’ll make some. I can knit. I made fingerless gloves and wrist warmers last winter. These are just the same only longer. I need a pattern though. Whilst they are simple and I am a competent knitter, I need to have success guaranteed or I’ll lose heart. I need a pattern that looks like the one in the catalogue.

And so I begin to trawl my way through the knitting sites. I come across hundreds of leg-warmer patterns but none of them are quite right. You see my requirements are very specific. A simple rib is not enough. I need a cable too. But if it’s complicated and I have to concentrate whilst knitting then I will go wrong and lose interest. It’s a very fine line between looking right and lying unfinished in the bottom of my knitting bag.

After what seems like hours, my vision is starting to blur but I still  have no perfect pattern. And then I find it. Not too complicated, the exact rib to cable ratio. Marvelous. The pattern is free and I click on the PDF file, my heart beating a little faster in anticipation of Autumn walks and kicking through leaves. The pattern is in Japanese. I hit translate which makes the surrounding adverts intelligible but leaves the pattern itself a mass of squiggles. Damn.

Undeterred, I decide to go with my second choice of pattern and visit the helpful women at my wonderful local wool shop Create. They are full of sound advice, won’t laugh at my desire for simplicity and the result, assuming that I don’t lose count and get disheartened, should be just what I’m hoping for.

This way I get to do something non screen related in the evening and by the time the nights are drawing in and jeans and boots are de rigour, I should be sporting a natty pair of leg-warmers. Or the yarn will be lying in the bottom of my knitting bag. tangled with the mess of other unfinished projects, waiting for today’s enthusiasm to re-emerge. It’s a hard one to call.

What do you think? I'd love to know...