I haven’t done a lot of knitting (or spinning, and certainly not crochet) lately. And by lately, I mean… the last 18 months. Or thereabouts. But in the last week or two I’ve picked up a couple of projects that’ve been languishing and started work on them again.
First of all there’s a hat for Miss RA. Whether or not she’ll wear it is another matter. She doesn’t seem too keen on keeping hats on! Anyway, this is it so far:
And the other thing I’ve picked up again are the mittens for Mum’s shoebox project. I didn’t finish them for last year’s box, so I figure if I do them now then I can be ahead of the curve for this autumn.
I’ve been thinking I should also get at least one of the jumpers that are laying around in bits finally sewn up. Yeahhh. I’ll get right on that.
I’ve been running around doing all-sorts this week. I’ve been at C House a few times, at the library (hi Henry!), at the gym (!!!), to KnitJam, and I’ve had a visitor this weekend – my friend Charlotte. Whew! And now I’m starting all over again.
I’m going to the gym with the bro and also sometimes with my upstairs neighbour. It’s definitely a good plan to have gym buddies. We’re planning to go to pilates, too. Should be fun!
In knitting news, I’ve finished my first project for 2011: the Snapdragon Tam for my sister-in-law:
Pattern:Snapdragon Tam by Ysolda Teague [Ravlink] Yarn: Elle Family Favourites DK in Gold. Needles: 4mm metal circulars.
I am pleased with it, and it was fun to knit, too :-)
As I didn’t post all that much last month in the end, I thought I’d do a round up of last year’s finished projects now, before it gets too out of date. Some of these I’ve mentioned before, but I wanted to get some better pictures of one or two anyway. So, in order of finishing:
I never did talk about how Christmas was in the end, did I? So I shall inflict in upon the world now. I actually did get everything finished and ready that I needed to. All my online shopping arrived (whew!) even though the post was all over the place, I finished the present I was making for Mum, and I even made chocolate chip cookies with moderate success!
The scarf for Mum was the Branching Out pattern [Ravlink], and I knitted it in a lovely Merino / Tencel blend that I spun on the wheel – the first time I’ve knit with my own handspun. I just left it as a single, and it worked really well (imo, anyway!) and I like the way the colour repeats came out. Mum says she really likes it too, which is the main thing!
I also joined two Christmas swaps, one through the Limegreenjelly group, and one through Plurk. The post was / is still being less kind where those are concerned. It seems to have eaten the parcel from the latter altogether, but I have now had my LGJ parcel from Cal, and a fabulous one it is too:
Two braids of LGJ fibre (one Merino/Silk, one Merino, yum!), a beautiful skein of Posh Yarn Elinor, an Orange Blossom perfume stick which I think is from Lush, mini Green & Black’s choccy bars (om nom nom!), a set of Knit Pro interchangeable needle tips and a cable for them (which spookily I’ve been wanting for ages), and an adorable Lego keyring. :-D I just hope she likes her gifts from me as much as I do mine.
My brother and sister-in-law brought pressies back from New Zealand! So I thought I’d show one of mine off:
The name of the colour comes from a New Zealand bird which has plumage in the colour of the yarn. Oh, and it’s a lovely 100g hank of bulky-weight mohair… I’ve been thinking about what to make with it, but I think I’ve settled on a shawl of some kind.
Hooray, I’ve finished my Gap Year Travels shawl. I cast off in a different colour, which was totally a design feature and not because I ran out of yarn twice (if you believe that, etc etc), ends are sewn in, and it’s currently awaiting blocking – I’m going to leave it pinned on the table overnight, I think. I do believe I’m quite pleased. Pictures tomorrow!
Since I’m extremely tired today (I have new medication which is making me drowsy, hopefully just for the adjustment period, and every time I sit down somewhere relaxing I drop off!), I’m not going to say much again. I haven’t managed to finish the shawl yet, but just have the cast off edge to go. I’ve been setting the twist of some of my handspun:
(excuse the rubbish photo), and also marvelling over how the Xandermog can go from FULL ON PESTER mode to fast asleep, you-can’t-wake-me in under five minutes flat. Still when the result is this little face:
I need an editor to stop me from making horrible puns, don’t I? But it’s true, today I have been applying myself to plying two bobbins of handspun together. I haven’t done the whole lot yet, and there won’t be pictures because this is for the Limegreenjelly Christmas swap. Which means I don’t want my partner to see what I’ve been working on for her, mwahahah… eek, hope she likes it!
Other than that, I’ve also been (still) working on the “Gap Year Travels” Travelling Woman shawl… and I can’t remember if I mentioned this, but I’ve called my particular version of it Gap Year Travels because the colourway of the yarn I’m knitting it in is called Byron Bay. Which is somewhere I visited while travelling in Australia on my gap year. Anyway, I’ve nearly finished the shawl – ten rows or so to go, and I don’t think I’m going to have enough of the yarn left. Fortunately, I do have some solid blue that goes with it well enough that I can use it to finish off. I hope! If that doesn’t work, well, I put in that lifeline, so it’ll be easy to rip back without dropping any stitches. If a bit of a nuisance. But then I’ll definitely have enough yarn to finish off the edging chart.
In other news, marmite rice cakes are delicious. That is all.
When I’ve not been out (Tuesdays is the day I volunteer at the library) or on the computer today, I’ve been industriously knitting away on my Travelling Woman shawl. I’m determined to finish it soon! I am a little worried that I won’t have quite enough yarn, but I put a lifeline in so that I can rip back to the middle of the previous patten repeat (if you know the pattern, this is the logical place) if need be. No pictures yet, but there will be once I’ve finished. Go go go!
The last, oh, while, I’ve been feeling quite determined to finish off all the knitting projects I have sitting around partly done. Which is good! Right? Right. It feels like I’ve done more knitting this year than I actually have in terms of finished projects (though the Knitting Meter in the side bar tells me that I’ve knit 2023 yards in the last year… and I’m only putting entries into that when I either finish a ball of yarn, or a project). But maybe that’s because I still have seven projects on the go.
I had planned not to start any new ones until I’d finished several of those I had lurking. But well, best laid plans and all that. Mum asked me to make a couple of things for her, and then I finished my basic “portable project” socks, so I just had to start another pair for that purpose, didn’t I? And now Christmas is fast approaching… eek! Still, I am feeling more organised and purposeful about the whole thing. My knitting, I mean, not just Christmas. And bizarrely, I think a lot of that is because I finally made the decision to (temporarily) frog my Ishbel and restart it – probably after Christmas – on larger needles. I checked my gauge again, and I had 23½ sts / 4″ where I should have had 20sts. No wonder it’d come up so small, and the knit fabric was probably a bit too dense. I shall swatch again with 4.5mm and 5mm needles and see how it goes. Whether I’ll end up running out of yarn again I don’t know, but I’ll give it a try, anyway. I’ve weighed the re-wound ball, and it’s as it should be, so I assume the yardage is correct too. But the best thing is, I feel much better – obviously that one had been hanging over me without me even realising it!
Now, I know I’ve said this a thousand times, but I’m going to knuckle down and sew up my two “UFOs” – the jumper and the cardigan. I’ve decided that the pieces of the mohair jumper really do need blocking before I sew them, since mohair is so floaty, but at least now I have the table sorted out and ready to sew on.
So my plan is to finish my Gap Year Travels shawlette / scarf (which frees up the needles for whichever cardigan I go for, I believe), and also my Menace jumper (block, sew, crochet, block again). Then to start my Christmas knitting and… just keep knitting until I have finished stuff! I reckon that’ll work.
Originally, I made the title of this post “Cardicisions”, which looked like I was trying to choose a vehicle, and then “Cardecisions”, which looked like I don’t know what. So in the end I decided to discard all unclever word mushing and be a little more clear. There! Aren’t you glad?
The point of all this is, I’m trying to decide on a cardigan to knit – I just lost my favourite one (shop bought, never fear, but still!), and even though it was a very plain v-neck raglan in fine yarn, I’ve decided to knit a replacement rather than buy one. Needless, I hope, to say, I won’t be knitting a direct replica! I have:
A kilo of black 100% wool DK. I’m not sure what the yardage is, but I would hope it’ll work out to “plenty”.
Rowan #40. There are also lots of free patterns on Rav, but I’d like to actually make something from a mag I’ve paid out money for!
a size 18-20 upper bod (so don’t want anything that’ll make me look even chunkier!).
Unless anyone knows any free DK-weight patterns that are knit in one piece1 and have some kind of interest to the fabric2, I’ve narrowed my choices to either Lichen3, Sadie4, or Autumn Leaveswithout the applique leaves, because, wtf?! Orrr, there’s Celtic, but my Mum thinks it needs the tweedy type yarn and the cables would be lost in plain black. Opinions? I also completely adore Juno, but I’m not sure if it’d suit my body shape, and hadn’t been planning on making a fitted cardi this time. Maybe one day!
Anyway, because I’m indecisive as ever, it’s poll time! (Or leave a comment, etc etc). I’m actually going to crosspost this entry to LJ and DW (I know! Crossposting twice in as many days! What is the world coming to?) so if you’re reading this there, you’ll have to come over to my blog to vote in the poll. Should you want to, of course. Participation entirely voluntary, refunds cannot be guaranteed.
All opinions much appreciated. I’ve got other knitting to finish, so I won’t be casting on straight away (probably). So I might even see if I can get this into the sidebar so it’s showing up for a few days.
ETA 7/11 – Eeeek! The lovely Noxie has let me know that non Ravelry members can’t see those links. Sorry about that – I thought the pattern info pages were open to all. So I’ve added photos of the various cardigans.
1 Because if I’m going to knit something from elsewhere then I want it to be for a really good reason. Like no seaming! Mmm, seamless construction… 2 Like I said, not a plain replica. I don’t want to pass out from boredom while knitting. Some kind of cables or texture. 3 All over cables might end up rather bulky, of course. I suppose I could always knit a (dun-dun-duuuuuh) swatch? 4 Maybe a bit lacy for the winter though? On the other hand, bound to be a faster knit…
I’m nicking this idea from Welshmillie – I also did this back in May ’07, so it’s fun to see what changes there are since then.
The meme says: “Edit the list, bold for stuff you’ve done, italics for stuff you plan to do one day, and normal for stuff you’re not planning on doing.” I am also adding bold & italic for things I planned to do previously and have now done, and bold and underlined for things I’ve done now that I hadn’t planned to do before. Oh, and italic & underlined for things I’m planning on now that I wasn’t before.
Afghan/Blanket I-cord Garter stitch Knitting with metal wire Shawl Stockingette stitch Socks: top-down Socks: toe-up
Knitting with camel yarn Mittens: Cuff-up
Mittens: Tip-down Hat Knitting with silk Moebius band knitting Participating in a KAL Sweater Drop stitch patterns Knitting with recycled/secondhand yarn Slip stitch patterns
Knitting with banana fiber yarn [O.o – I still haven’t come across this]
Domino knitting (modular knitting) Twisted stitch pattern Knitting with bamboo yarn
Two end knitting Charity knitting Knitting with soy yarn[but I have spun with merino/soy fibre!] Cardigan Toy/doll clothing Knitting with circular needles Knitting with your own handspun yarn Slippers
Graffiti knitting (knitting items on, or to be left on the street) Continental knitting Designing knitted garments Cable stitch patterns (incl. Aran) Lace patterns
Publishing a knitting book Scarf Teaching a child to knit American/English knitting (as opposed to continental) Knitting to make money Button holes Knitting with alpaca Fair Isle knitting
Dying with plant colours Knitting items for a wedding Household items (dishcloths, washcloths, tea cozies…) Knitting socks (or other small tubular items) on two circulars Olympic knitting Knitting with someone else’s handspun yarn Knitting with DPNs Holiday related knitting Teaching a male how to knit Bobbles
Knitting for a living Knitting with cotton
Knitting smocking Dying yarn
Knitting art Fulling/felting Knitting with wool Textured knitting Kitchener BO Purses/bags Knitting with beads Swatching Long Tail CO Entrelac Knitting and purling backwards[OK, I know what this means now! Maybe one day!] Machine knitting Knitting with self-patterning/self-striping/variegating yarn Stuffed toys Baby items Knitting with cashmere Darning Jewellery Knitting with synthetic yarn Writing a pattern Gloves Intarsia
Knitting with linen Knitting for preemies Tubular CO[Is this on or off? I’ve done a tubular cast off…]
Freeform knitting Short rows Cuffs/fingerless mitts/arm warmers Pillows Knitting a pattern from an online knitting magazine Rug Knitting on a loom
Thrummed knitting Knitting a gift Knitting for pets Shrug/bolero/poncho
Knitting with dog/cat hair [But I knew a woman who did]
Hair accessories Knitting in public
I don’t know if that’s much of an indication of my knitting progress or not. I suspect how well I’ve knitted things is more to the point. But then again, this meme is about trying techniques. There must have been some that are left off of it, though. I just can’t think of them.
Whoops… I’m really tired today, and I nearly forgot to post. Wouldn’t that have been a good start to NaBloPoMo. As it is I have no time to think up anything clever or interesting (as if there’s ever anything along those lines here!), so instead I shall post a photo of one of my recently completed knitting projects:
A pair of “handsocks”, aka fingerless mitts, for Mum. Her hands don’t get as painful if she keeps them warm, so these are really useful for that. They’ve completely stashbusted some of my left over sock yarn, so that’s good too.