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Archive for the ‘Knitting’ Category

Today is Friday, the children went back to school last week, today is an inset day! Crazy, crazy, crazy. We’re going to make the most of the parks being relatively quiet because all the other children will be at school, but wish me luck as we’ve got to do a supermarket too!

Luckily my WIP still fits in my bag, so whilst they’re playing, i’ll knit, win-win! I’m not entirely sure what i’m making. It’s a triangular scarf and it’s like the basic garter stitch for the ginkgo but with a completely different cast on, so I shall have to wait and see how the lace border goes, may have to write my own, but more on that as I get there.

Each Saturday, I email our wedding party + mums with an update of the week’s progress. This week I have so much to write about as we’ve really motored on – as one does when you’re getting wed only 16 weeks after your man proposed, so we’re at 13 weeks and 1 day to go and all the big stuff is out of the way I can think about all the fun creative D.I.Y. stuff.

Beautiful yarn

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Beautiful location

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Ribbit, Ribbit

Ribbit, Ribbit is my word of choice to describe this mornings events. For those of you up with crafting lingo I have indeed frogged the first attempt at the ginkgo. Not because I did it wrong (for once) but because it really didn’t look right with the variegated yarn.

So what’s frogging? Well it definitely is not to be confused with dogging! It basically means I ripped the knitting apart, as the stitches come out you’re ‘ripping, ripping’ which many moons ago someone thought sounded like ‘Ribbit’ which then led to frogging.

So I am now on the hunt for another pattern….anyone got any good rec’s for a one skein lace triangular scarf pattern?

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It’s Christmas in just over 14 weeks and normally I would have started to at least plan what I was making for friends and family already. However, this year is going to be different…..I’m getting married in 13 weeks! So whilst planning the major stuff for that and also the little stuff, including D.I.Y. table and venue decorations, I thought it would be a really nice idea to make a gift for each of bridesmaids. All three of them are very special to me in one or another (as bm’s usually are!) but I have never crafted anything for any of them. My friend Hannah from ‘The Hen House’ has custom dyed me the most gorgeous 4ply super-wash merino yarn.

Here it is in skeins:

 

 Isn’t it just the most gorgeous yarn? Hannah has done an amazing job. So what’s the plan with it? well I’ve been searching for something fantastic to make with it, that will show off the yarn but also be a pretty pattern and i’ve decided upon this Ginkgo Shoulderette Shawl available as free Ravelry download. I’ve got four skeins, so i’ll be doing one for each bridesmaid and if there’s enough time i’ll also make one for myself. I’m going to try and add some green in somewhere, maybe some ribbon or embroidery or something to bring in all my wedding colours and then maybe we’ll get some really funky pictures with them on my big day.

Here’s a picture of it balled (a task that I detest)

It may be a really horrible, mindless task, but doesn’t it just look scrumptious? Hannah named it Blue Lagoon and I have to say the shades of blue are so beautiful, I could just stare at it all day.

 

Little lady is now off to school so i get to cast on in a few minutes…..progress reports to follow i’m sure.

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I’m not sure this is a great topic for me, I can’t think of a great deal of things that i’ve actually made.

Two that I can think of, both blankets. First is this:

This blanket was the first blanket I ever made. It is just a rectangle of plain SS knitting, and a crochet border. You can see it but it has a hood attached. I loved making this blanket and in the picture my beautiful daughter, Delilah is about an hour old. So, that’s where it began, but where is it now? well it’s currently folded up in the bottom of her wadrobe and it does make an occasional appearance as a snuggly if it’s particuarly cold or if she empties everything out of her wardrobe and finds it!! It’s too small now to be usd with the hood, but we had a good year or so out of it.

The other that I (unfortunately) know the whereabouts of is Noah’s granny square blanket. I was so proud of this when I made it and got a warm feeling inside when he took it bed with him and then I just got better and realised how utterly rubbish this is:

it was made with love, and I think that’s probably about all it’s going for itself now. This is now known ‘lovingly’ in our house as the wee blanket. Jude (4) thinks he’s a big boy and doesn’t need ‘pjama pants’ (read nappy) at bedtime anymore. Every so often we let him have a night or two without one, just to see. Well, so far it hasn’t worked, i’ve just been woken up in the middle now with a crying boy saying he’s wet. We’re talking like 2 in the morning, there’s no way you’ll catch me trying to put a new sheet on at that time in the morning added to the fact that sometimes i’m a silly mummy who forgets to put a protector on so on those occassions, this beauty comes to the rescue. Jude will sleep on this until morning. It’s only acrylic so a quick run round in the machine with all the wet stuff and this is as good as new. I really think that is why this is so mishapen 😉

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This is a really tough subject for me, I struggle with it on a weekly basis. I am generally a very organised person, I write lists for everything, I write lists about writing lists, there is no greater feeling in the world then having everything crossed off a list. However, when it comes to yarn and projects I am not organised in the slightest, in fact i’m extremely fickle.

I have a yarn cupboard, it houses old pattern books, magazines and general patterns (that my mum has passed down to me), a bag of odd yarns and my needle and hook collection:

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As you can see it’s really not the tidiest thing in the world. I actually gave it good spring clean a few weeks back and cleared out the biggest bag of odds and ends i’ve ever had.  I really need to organise it properly, i’m imagning a little plastic draw thing for the books and needles. I definitely need to purchase a needle roll, or in fact just make one (you do not want to see the untidiness of my fabric stash!) I guess I should take some time and sift through the patterns from my mum and perhaps think about giving back the ones i’m not going to use. However, I don’t really feel that having a messy cupboard creates messy work or a fussy mind as my current WIP lives in it’s own little hole and ‘the cupboard’ never needs to be accessed except for inspiration for the next project.

The current WIP lives here:

Again, probably not the tidiest thing, but to be fair this is HUGE now and doesn’t fit anywhere. It is actually next to ‘the cupboard’ and of course, next to my seat on the sofa, ready to picked up at any point. All the yarn for this is kept in a superb bag that was made for me by Craft Fairy a few years back:

I couldn’t get a great inner shot of it but inside it has a really handy pocket which i use to keep a few hooks of the sixe i’m using for the project as they seem to get misplaced so easily (that’s organised right??)

This is my corner of everything (I cant believe i’m actually posting evidence of this online!) Underneath all the rubbish you can see the Girasole project bag posted yesterday and hiding under that is a big bag of shetland wool ready for my fair isle experiment. I really detest looking at this corner and also don’t like looking at WIP that i’m not actually doing right now so this corner helps to keep it out of sight, out of mind!

My physical yarn/pattern stash may not be very organised, but my online patterns are. I use ravelry to keep ‘wishlist’ patterns in check and I also try to put as much as possible into Evernote, so that I can access patterns and yarn requirements anywhere. Particularly handy when going into my LYS, everything I need is on my phone, brilliant.

Lastly, I think that I keep my yarn obsession under control by only buying what I need, when i’m ready for it. I will only go to the LYS when there’s something I need and I’ll buy enough for the project to begin with so that I don’t have to be tempted by going in a second time and spending the minmum to use my card or get loyalty points!

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You can find out more about what this is here.

This is such a fabulous idea and I am totally jumping on this bandwagon.

I’ve been away on a long weekend so will be starting today with day 2, so how have I come on in a year? What have I learnt?

This time last year I still saw myself as a beginner just knitting squares and beginning to pick up a hook. I didn’t really understand terms or even how to read patterns – I just made it up as I went along.

So, I made it a personal goal to learn how to read patterns, but I didn’t start with something easy, oh no I started with this Girasole! Some may call me nuts, others ambitious, and most just plain crazy. What made it extra complicated was the fact that I had also never used DPN’s or knitted in the round. This project is still very much a WIP as I’m currently preferring crochet and the fact that if the kids grab it I only have to pick up 1 stitch as opposed to hundreds. This is how it looks at the moment

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You can see I really didn’t get very far, but I think it looks ok for my first ever attempt at circular knitting, will look even better when it’s finished!! Look how much more yarn I have to use though:

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There’s loads!! Think this may have to be a project for this year too!

What I learnt this year with crochet?
The first word that pops into my head is most definitely patience. This is an attribute that I really don’t associate with myself so my next project has been a major labour of love – it’s an Attic24 granny stripe blanket. Oh, how I completely love that blog, I could just sit and stare at the screen for hours (and I have!). Before starting this blanket my crochet skills were limited to a dodgy granny square blanket for my son,

20110329-090958.jpgsome hairbands to keep my dreadlocks presentable

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and a few Christmas decorations such as snow flakes, Christmas trees and stars. I don’t have any photos of those as they’re in the loft with the Christmas decorations!

You can see that my crochet skills, didn’t really add up to a skill at all ,in fact it was more just a basic theory knowledge, so i took the plunge and ordered some yarn

This lovely style craft DK yarn then created this:

which in turn became this:

I’m pretty sure i’m about 2/3’s of the way through the stripes and then will need to do the border. It’s very therapeutic just sitting doing stripes. I haven’t worried too much about what colour stripe to do next, just picked up what i fancied. I started with a fondation of 270 which is the perfect size to fit my bed with overhang, especially when the border is done. It takes me 20mins to do a row so 40mins per stripe. I often don’t think i’ve amde any progress then lay it out and realise that a child can snuggle underneath it and then an adult and i get all excited about it again. I’ve got just under 30more stripes to go so not too long till the border, just hoping i dont run out of wool!!

I think this post needs a bit of  what projects/crafts do you plan to learn in the next year?

I only say this because I am so excited about some finds I came across in an old second hand book shop

That’s right, fair isle knitting! I really am beyond excited to have found these. I’ve often admired fair isle from afar and couldn’t find a pattern book I liked the look of enough things to buy, so when i saw these for 20p each, i really couldn’t let them go.

I also intend of trying my hand at more pattern writing. I have written one pattern so far, it is for my grey head band above and can be found on Ravelry and also a few posts below.

So, that’s my progress in a year.

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