Bring me sunshine – Polaroid Blaze sunglasses review

One of the other good things about our holiday down South was that we saw some real, actual sunshine. Alright, so the wind broke our tent before we’d even got it up, but at least it wasn’t raining all the time. Whilst we’ve been lucky enough not to any floods (although some nearby villages have) it feels as if we’ve been living in constant drizzle/downpour for months. I even experienced actual joy at being able to put two loads of washing out to dry yesterday. This is not good.

Real actual Kent sunshine
(photo credits to Ginge)

Before our trip, I did manage one run wearing my new Polaroid sunglasses (it was during that all too brief two day heatwave back in May) but since then it’s been more flipper and snorkel weather round our way. Anyway, this seemed an ideal chance to give them more of a run out, so the sunglasses went into the bag (along with Miles and every single piece of kit that I could corral the night before we set off).

Polaroid Blaze

The first thing that I noticed about the sunglasses is how incredibly light they are. So much so that I keep having to rattle the case just to make sure that they’re in there. Lightness in the box translates into comfy on the face – most of the time I completely forgot that I was wearing them. There’s no movement or bounce when you run, they’re a nice snug fit and there’s no gap letting in sunlight at the bottom of the frame. I also like the blue tint that allows me to sit inside staring at the sky and maintaining blissful denial that it’s grey and miserable outside.

As a bit of an experiment, I gave them to Ginge to try on. The arms of the glasses have a bit of a springy stretch to them and even though they’re a good fit on me, they also accommodate the size of Ginge’s bonce (this is not to say that he has an abnormally large head, it’s just that I have quite a small one). Ginge declared them to be really comfy and better than his Oakley sunglasses in that they let in less daylight. Unfortunately he also declared them to be pink. The official description is “striking red hot flash mirror lenses” and they are in the women’s and the men’s sunglasses section of the Polaroid website, but he wasn’t convinced.

Technically they are excellent, looks-wise they’re maybe a little too dynamic for me. I feel that they should belong to someone who is lean and tanned and toned, powering their way along a rugged trail run whilst wearing the briefest of Lycra. To give you an idea of contrast, I am writing this with the sunglasses on my head whilst wearing an elasticated waistband, drinking a brew and wondering whether to eat half a red Bounty. I can dream can’t I?

It must be glove

I have really rubbish circulation in my hands. I’ve had it for years and eventually mentioned it to the doctor on a visit a few months ago. The conversation went something like this.

ME: Um, and I think I might have Raynaud’s phenomenon. Hang on… (fumbles in bag for phone, finds photo of scarily white fingers, shows doctor)
DR: Yes, that definitely looks like it. Do you want to take anything for it?
ME: Not really. I’ll go and knit myself some gloves.
DR: Good idea.

I paraphrase somewhat (mainly so my GP doesn’t get struck off) but that was the gist of it.

I’ve always been somewhat suspicious of fingerless gloves until I tried on a pair of Ginge’s and found that I could still type and do stuff, but without my fingers going numb. With this in mind, I got searching for a pattern. Whilst I can knit on dpns, sometimes I can’t be bothered and I was relieved to find a Sirdar pattern for mittens/gloves/fingerless gloves that is knitted on straight needles. It’s also knitted with 4 ply yarn meaning that I can either put a dent in my stash of sock yarn (I love sock yarn but don’t knit socks) or I have an excuse to knit to buy more sock yarn (did I mention that I love sock yarn but don’t knit socks?).

I bought some gorgeous wool from Knitty City on our trip to New York last May.

The ball on the right became mittens, the ball on the left is a pub knitting work in progress

My plan was to knit something special to remember the holiday and when we got home, I launched myself into a shawl pattern from the book in the photo. I’m not sure what possessed me to knit a shawl and I’m not sure when I would ever wear a shawl, but let’s not worry about that. It was a fairly straightforward pattern repeat and yet I couldn’t get going with it. I’d do a bit, cock it up, start it again, do some more, make a really stupid mistake (like knitting it on completely the wrong size needles for a while), start again… I kept persevering until I had a moment of clarity.

This is as far as I got with the shawl on the nth attempt…

Even though the yarn was lovely and the pattern was lovely, it wasn’t coming together. With knitting, just as in life, sometimes the individual parts are right, but together they just don’t work and no amount of perseverance will force them to do so. What I love about knitting is that you can do this…

Riiiiiiiiiip it right back…

A day or so after I frogged the shawl, I found the glove pattern and thought ‘ah ha!’. Not so long later (it’s a really simple pattern) I had myself a pair of gloves. One is a slightly looser tension because I knitted it straight but on circular needles (to make it more portable), but not so you’d notice. They’re a lovely fit, despite the fact that I have quite big hands (on photos I end up with really long fingers like Nosferatu) and I think they show off the wool much better than the shawl ever would.

Like a woolly Nosferatu


The sweet irony is that when I finished these, I thought it would be a bit unseasonal to blog about them in June (especially as I have some lovely Polaroid sunglasses waiting for a review). However since then, I have worn gloves more than sunnies. In June.

I would like to register a complaint about this.