Saturday, December 30, 2006

Calorimetry has been such a fun pattern to knit and I love the finished headband. So far I have knitted five and there is one on the needles nearly finished. Millie's pink one is made from some Lorna's Laces left over from the One Skein Cabled Footlets that I knitted earlier this year - I knew I'd find a good use for it eventually. My blue one is from the yarn left over from the Grownup Bonnet. The other three are from some spare Kureyon that I had in my stash. One of these got gifted before I had the chance to take a picture. I like Calorimetry so much that I purchased a ball of Debbie Bliss Soho especially to make one as a gift and I should finish it by tomorrow.
This week I finally purchased a copy of Erika Knight's Simple Crochet. I had wanting to make the Turkish Slippers for ages but couldn't bring myself to spend the money on a book that had only one pattern that I'd ever want to make. Then it occured to me that I have bought many books with loads of great patterns in but never actually made any of them. So, perhaps if I bought the book and some yarn and cast on straight away.... So that's what I did ! Over the last two days I have made these.... and these...
and these...and these.....I love,love, love this pattern. The slippers work up quickly - just a couple of hours per pair. I've bought some more Debbie Bliss Cotton dk to make another couple of pairs. Just can't get enough of these !

Friday, December 22, 2006

Knitty's Calorimetry

Last night I came across a thread on Crafster devoted to Calorimetry, the lovely headband from the latest edition of Knitty. They all looked so good that I felt compelled to grab my knitting needles and a leftover ball of Noro Kureyon and cast on immediately. I modified the pattern slightly after reading that most people are finding the original pattern too large. I cast on 80 stitches and did the repeat row 11 times instead of 15 - it turned out just about perfect ! This is a brilliant pattern. It's fun and quick to knit and takes less than one skein of yarn. The finished headband is also very wearable . If I get time, I will make a couple more as last minute Christmas gifts over the weekend.

Blogger has finally let me upload the picture of our Christmas tree !

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Scarves Galore !

The handspun scarf got finished with some funky pom poms this week. It's the first thing that I've actually knitted from my own yarn so I'm particularly proud of it. I hope to get much more time on my spinning wheel in the new year.
Last week or so at work has given me loads of knitting time and I have made up five keyhole scarves from the incredibly inexpensive fun fur yarn that I bought at the the local post office. These are mostly for gifts that Millie can give at Christmas - I like her to experience the joy of giving as well as receiving presents. I like these simple scarves as they are incredibly soft and warm as well as fun. There is enough yarn in my stash to make at least another four of these.

Also completed, in about two days, is the neck gaiter from One Skein. This was made from two strands of 4 Ply wool that I already had in my stash. It is also a present and I'm quite pleased with it.

I also started a pair of leg warmers in Colinette Skye. The pattern was in an old issue of Simply Knitting. They seem a little large but might look ok bunched up around the ankles. I'm racing through these and will easily finish them before the end of the week so they may get to be presents for someone. Most of my friends are getting something handknitted this year despite the fact that I started knitting gifts a bit late.
We are starting to feel quite festive now that we have put some decorations up. Miss Millie helped to dress the tree - my favourite part of Christmas. She is really excited. Tonight we are taking her to see a pantomime - Oh yes we are ! It is Aladdin at the Watford Palace Theatre and is rumoured to be very good. Should be fun.

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Christmas knitting goes on

The Christmas present knitting is still going on at full speed and there are still a couple of gifts needed. The Silk Sleeves from One Skein are finished and look absolutely beautiful. The Colinette Parisienne has made a good substitute for Kidsilk Haze. The colours are amazing and I managed to get away with using just one skein. Usually it would be necessary to use two skeins in imaginary stripes to stop the colour pooling. I took a chance with this and found that the colours came out ok. I have one skein of Parisienne left and may use it to make another pair of these for a gift. They took just 2 days to whip up on 5.5mm needles.
I liked the cheap fun fur keyhole scarf that I made last week so much that I knitted another in a turquoise and green shade. I made this, mostly at work , in one day. The yarn may have been super cheap but the finished item is just great. It's really soft and fluffy and fun to wear. I gave the purple one to Clare the Bear who loves it. I may keep this one for myself. These are such fun to make that I have already started another in white fun fur . I am using 6mm needles and casting on 20 stitches. Then I use moss stitch as this creates an extra fluffy fabric by bringing the pile evenly onto both sides of the scarf. After about 5 inches I made a hole by knitting 10 stitches separately for about 3 inches and then rejoined the yarn and knitted the other 10 stitches to match. I then kept knitting over all 20 stitches until the scarf measured about 30 inches. It only takes just over one ball of this yarn. I purchased a few more balls in different colours yesterday - it's such a bargain!

Sunday, December 03, 2006

The reluctantly modelled Grownup Bonnet

Miss Millie was in a very bad mood tonight - don't know why ! She sort of wanted to be my model but wasn't going to do it gracefully. The Grownup Bonnet is pretty good. In fact, I like it enough to make another one using some more expensive yarn. It will be warm and practical and does look quite fun. It was also very easy to knit. I used Cygnet Aran in a nice denim blue shade. It took only about one and a half balls. I have a few skeins of Debbie Bliss Maya in my stash that could look great as one of these.

Millie actually came home from a Christmas Fayre with her face painted last week and looking like this...Scary !
For various reasons I have been feeling very stressed over the last two weeks and haven't got a lot of knitting done. The need for some satisfying finished objects is now very great. With this in mind, I whipped up a little keyhole scarf from a ball of incredibly cheap fun fur yarn this morning. It took one ball on size 8 mm needles and only a couple of hours knitting. It's really soft and fun. There are several more of these planned for Christmas presents
I also almost completed a cute triangular scarf from some really cheap yarn that was going at 2 balls for a £1 in my local Post Office . Normally I am a yarn snob and would avoid this sort of stuff but the colours were particularly nice and it was so, so cheap. I think I am not going to be able to finish this one as I am about one ball short. My chances of getting hold of any more of this are slim. It may get frogged.

With Christmas presents in mind I have cast on for another pair of Silk Sleeves from my One Skein book. I am using the Colinette Parisienne Mohair that I bought at Ally Pally - they should look great.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Silk, handspun and other things...

One of the skeins of Colinette Tao silk that I got from Ally Pally got knitted up last week. There are several one skein patterns in the Arboretum booklet that supports this yarn and it was difficult to decide which to make. I settled on the Sycamore fingerless gloves. The yarn is lovely and soft and knits up well but I feel that the colours looked far nicer on the skein than they do in the finished item. They look nice - just not special. At £13.50 a skein I want really special ! I haven't sewn them up yet. I also need to sew up a second pair of Sox on 2 Stix that I made at work.

This scarf is the first thing that I've knitted from my own handspun. I decided to just make a simple garter stitch skinny scarf. It looks quite funky and will have a fringe when it's finished. This was merino wool tops that I spun up into a chunky yarn. I like it. I'm now working on spinning a finer, more even yarn. It's not easy but it's fun trying.

I bought this book last week and it has some great patterns in it. I've made great progress with the Grownup Bonnet especially as I can only work on it when the person who will be getting it for Christmas isn't around. I also plan to make the lace edged shrug from this book and have purchased a yummy wool/silk blend to knit it with. I need more time !

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Pink fluffy things

My favourite model, Miss Millikins, kindly agreed to show off the Colinette Fandango boa that I made last week. This has already been gifted to my friend ,Fiona, who had a birthday last Wednesday. Millie loved it and I had to promise to make another one for her before I could get this one back from her. Luckily I have another skein in shades of pink that I purchased at Ally Pally. Fiona loved the birthday boa and I must say that it suited her well. This is a pattern that I have used about four times now and have always been pleased with the results. It only takes one skein so it's a great way to try out some Colinette colourways.

The second pair of Socks on Two Stix are very nearly finished. They came to a halt when I ran out of wool again and couldn't find any more of this colour at John Lewis. I will have to make them a little shorter than the first pair. It should only take about half an hour to finish the second sock and slightly shorten the first one. Finishing them off would be the right thing to do.... so of course I cast on something else instead !
The back and left front of Millie's fluffy pink bolero are finished. It is working up quite quickly and looks cute.
All in all, last week was very busy and not a lot of knitting got done. Halloween, school disco and firework night have cut severely into my knitting time - but hey! Millie has had a great time and will hopefully be in need of a few early nights this week.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Second post for Sunday

Miss Millie went to a Halloween party this afternoon and looked so cute in her outfit that I had to take pictures. If I'd had more time I would have made the outfit myself - but you know how it is... We did find time to make the pumpkin lantern this afternoon before she went partying.

My thoughts have turned to sewing lately as I wonder if I will have time to knit all the Christmas gifts that I'd like to. Sewing gifts may be a quicker alternative. I recently purchased a couple of books from Amazon with this thought in mind. They arrived yesterday and here they are along with the copy of Knit Today magazine that I purchased in town. There are lots of good ideas in these books and I shall be having a rummage through my fabric stash this week. The sewing machine has been very neglected since I rediscovered my love of knitting. There are at least two quilts that need finishing in my craft cupboard

Blogger was playing up badly this morning and wouldn't let me uplaod all the photos that I wanted to share. So here is the planned pink and fluffy project for Millie...
And here is another pic of my gorgeous girl...

Socks on two sticks

Desperate for new hand knitted socks , I decided to try Knitty's Socks on 2 sticks pattern. It was really quick and easy and the finished result is pretty good. Im not sure it was actually any easier than using circular needles but it just didn't require as much concentration and was easy to memorize. The sewing up was a bit of a pain but you can't feel the seams when you wear them. I used Cygnet Superwash dk and managed to get one pair of socks and almost another foot out of two 50g balls. I like them so much that I bought another ball and intend to finish the second pair at work this week. I have about a ton of sock yarn in my stash and am hoping that I will feel inspired to use some of it soon. Socks are pretty handy for a small portable project - ideal for work knitting.

Feeling a little guilty about the amount of new yarn purchased and the number of UFO's lying around, I decided to tackle a couple of those nearly finished projects. The Sweetpea Cardigan is now sewn up with the lace edging added to the hem and sleeves. It just needs the embroidery and I would have completed it if I could just remember where I put those embroidery ribbons and cotton perle. I think it is a cute little jacket but it is nowhere near big enough for Millie - she is seriously miffed ! This is not because my gauge was out ! I just misunderstood the nature of the sizes in the pattern. There were no age guidelines but the largest size seemed to measure the same as one of her existing cardigans but obviously it has a few inches of ease to it and crochet is not very stretchy. I would say this will probably fit a three year old. Miss Millie is nearly six. I will finish the embroidery and then try to find a good home for it. Meanwhile I have bought 3 balls of a beautiful fluffy yarn, Zanzibar, to make a little cardi for Millie to make up for the disappointment. Like I needed more yarn !

The Alien Illusion Scarf is also going well - just under one alien head to complete. I want it myself but think it would be a great present for someone I know with a birthday in December. Do I really want to knit a third one ? Maybe !

Saturday, October 21, 2006

All in a spin...

This week I spun the hand dyed Wensleydale up into this. I'm definitely improving on the wheel and the second skein, which is still on the niddy noddy, is even more even. Working with the space dyed stuff is great fun - much more interesting to spin as the colours keep changing. I am thinking of using this to make the Falling Leaves Scarf from the last issue of Spindlicity.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Eowyn and the Aliens

As if I hadn't enough projects planned already .... I fell in love with the Eowyn wrist warmers in the free Rowan supplement that came with this month's Simply Knitting. So, of course, I had to purchase a couple of balls of Rowan Kid Classic. I knitted them up in an evening and blocked them over night ready to sew up next day. I absolutely love the finished items. There were a few problems with the pattern and a search on Google revealed that most people have been slightly confused by the thumb holes. The wrist warmers are only ever pictured with the lacey edging covering your hands but there are thumb holes at the other end in the pattern. I just decided to knit it as written and the wristwarmers look great worn either way round. The yarn is soft and warm and I enjoyed knitting with it. You use two strands knitted together to make a chunky thickness - one each of two similar colours for a tweedy effect. . I think I could probably make 3 pairs from 4 balls and may well buy some more to do just this.A couple more Alien heads have been completed at work this week, although following the chart has been hard with all the distractions. I'm looking forward to being able to wear this one - the WIP has been much admired !

I bought some Tao silk last week with a view to making the crochet necklace from the Arboretum booklet. Decided to try out the pattern with some Twilley's Goldfingering and am quite pleased with the result. It was fun to make and I think I would wear it..Last but not least.... spinning ! I've spun up some of the roving I bought at Ally Pally last week. It is much more fun spinning with the hand dyed stuff. Watching the colours change is a real joy. The finished yarn looks to be about a worsted weight. I'm not sure what to use it for yet. Oh, and I've signed up for the Bjork Knitalong and am just waiting for my pattern to arrive

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Last weeks knitting pictures

Well, Blogger has finally let me upload the pictures of last weeks knitting. I'm really making some progress with Madeline now that I've figured out the edging. It looks great and I can't wait to finish it. Distractions abound though,
in the form of dishcloths ! Two more of these little beauties in Rowan All Seasons Cotton. I like this design a lot and so does Miss Millie. The pink one I made a few weeks ago is now her very favourite facecloth. The Alien Illusion Scarf is also looking good and is mainly being knittedat work.
Meanwhile, I bought this month's copy of Simply Knitting and fell in love with the Eowyn Wrist Warmers in the free Rowan supplement. I knitted a pair yesterday and am just sewing them up and blocking them tonight. I also made a crochet collar/necklace from Twilleys Goldfingering using the pattern in the Colinette Arboretum booklet last night. It looks really effective. All in all a fairly productive week. Now I just need to work on using some of that stash.