Saturday, 29 March 2008

Birthday Time!

My youngest DD is 7 years old today!

Here she is on her go-kart that we bought for her. As you can see it's a great hit!

I'm so proud of my little girl. She's been through a lot of changes during the last 12 months, and she's taken it all in her stride. Now she's calmer and happier, doing really well at school, and loving life by the seaside.

She's showing a real flair for words - spelling and useage, adores animals - hence the party at the zoo today, can't resist a challenge, and loves drumming. She's so like her Dad!

Happy Birthday sweetheart.

Tuesday, 25 March 2008

New loves

Knitting makes me so fickle. As soon as I decide on a new project, I see yet more fantastic yarn and designs to lead me astray. Oh well, such is the crafter's life.

This Sirdar Just Soya yarn in shade "Hot Pepper" led me astray when I found it on the
Black Sheep Wools website. Together with the accompanying 15-pattern booklet, I couldn't resist.

This is the particular design that I'm going to make - first. I'm sure I'll be buying more of this yarn to make some of the other designs too; many of them come in womens and girls sizes, which my DDs are VERY impressed with.

They've already shown me several that they like. I guess I'd better get them knitting soon!

In the meantime, this is the project I had started whilst waiting for the Just Soya to arrive.

It's the
Beachcomber Tunic from Interweave Crochet Spring 2007, and somehow I managed to buy exactly the right yarn from ebay a while back - total fluke. That's Garnstudio's Silke-Tweed in "Rose" - a lovely dusky pink shade.

This is the pattern that inspired me to take out a year's subscription to Interweave Crochet - not something I tend to do much.

This piece is the right front - which I've now frogged and re-knitted. Here we go again! I'd already modified the neckline and edging as I didn't like the way it stuck out by the throat. Sound familiar?!

Anyway I ended up re-knitting it as I wanted it to be longer. The bottom half of the front is crocheted, and at the original length the dividing line would have cut across my boob - not a good look. ;-)

So now it's longer, and also has a friend - the left front, which is finished to match. The corresponding back is in progress as you read..

BTW, we escaped the snow of course. We did see a little snow fall, but it melted as it touched the ground. We were in Falmouth at the time, enjoying a leisurely walk around the harbour and shops on Easter Monday. Ah, life is hard in Cornwall. ;-)

Saturday, 22 March 2008

Cosy toes

Presenting... the Tidal Wave socks.

Knitted in Hipknits cashmere sock-weight yarn using a 2.5mm Addi circular needle.

Easy peasy, comfy and quick. Never thought I'd say that about knitting socks. Just goes to show what you can learn.

Now I just need to make some of those sock blockers - hmm, should I go for the
plastic or hanging type? Maybe both! :-)

In the meantime, here are the socks in action.

And believe me they're going to get plenty of that. ;-)

(P.S. The ballet was wonderful and much enjoyed!)

Saturday, 15 March 2008

Culture and Cashmere

Look - I have a cashmere Tidal Wave sock! Just the one so far though.

There won't be much knitting today as I'm having a cultural day - I'm taking my DDs out for dinner and to see the Snow Queen ballet in Truro.

DH wasn't so keen, so he's going to the pub with a friend. ;-)

Look what I received yesterday! A gorgeous skein of Bamboo sock yarn from YarnAddictAnni. I'm looking forward to casting on with this soon - possibly for a pair of the infamous Monkey socks.

I also received my Amazon parcel including Norah Gauhan's "Knitting Nature" - I've had a bit of a splurge as I resisted any knitterly purchases for about 3 months.

The last acquisition for yesterday was "Fabulous Flirty Crochet" from the library. I'd reserved it and they sent it over from St Austell library to Perranporth for me, for just 50p. What a great service!

Thursday, 13 March 2008

Spring Inspiration

Thanks for the neckline shaping ideas. I'm going to let it stew for a while, as I'm not sure which way to go yet. I may even frog the lot!

In the meantime, have you seen the latest
Knitty? Oooooh dear. Lots more inspiration. So much that it's going to induce a knitted stutter. Know what I mean? No? Well, if you talk too fast for your brain to handle, you stutter (this is my interpretation for this topic, so don't quote me on the medical analysis!). Well my brain is clocking up new projects-in-waiting far too fast for my hands to cope with. Hence the knitting stutter. ;-)

I know that both DDs would love the Emma's but I'm not sure they wouldn't be too heavy and start to sag. Instead I'm tempted to go for the Charm Shrug. I have 7 balls of All Seasons Cotton left, so I might try swatching that.

As for me, I love Yosemite, Jaden, Marjorie, and Honeycomb - in that order. Plus I have masses of cotton in my stash that would be suitable for both Yosemite and Jaden I'm sure. Very tempting...

Tuesday, 11 March 2008

Spring clean and conundrum

I know the weather is distinctly wintry right now, but something is inspiring me to clean out. I'm not destashing as such, but I feel the need to clear the decks a little.

Not only have I been finishing off all my WIPs, but I actually want to use up a good deal of my stash yarn too. A strange concept, I know, but I would like to be able to buy some new yarn and start knitting with it soon after purchase, without feeling immensely guilty about the enormous stash occupying our small bedroom.

The other weird thing that's happening is that I'm getting around to knitting up some of my more longstanding stash and finding that the pattern I originally bought it for is no longer what I want to wear. So then it's back to pattern hunting, and finding that I don't have enough of that yarn for the patterns I do want to make... which comes back to the first idea of buying yarn and using it soon after.

So as part of the clean-up, I finished the aran lace cardigan. Not a huge task, as all I had to do was sew on the beads, sew in the ends, and block it. Now it's done, and I'm disappointed to say the least.

The knitting is lovely - I adore the stitch patterns and the colour and feel of the Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran yarn, and even the glass beads which co-ordinate with it beautifully.

But I hate the fit. The sleeves are too long and wide. The body is too short. The front neckline is too high - a fastener at the top corner would sit on my throat. Not what you would expect from a knit-to-fit pattern. Sigh.

I'm not sure what to do with it right now. I don't really want to banish it as I love the yarn, but I know that I won't wear it. So what to do?

As it was a top-down knit, I could unpick the lower part of each sleeve and rework them narrower and shorter. Part of that problem was I only had a short circular needle in the right size, so couldn't so magic loop to decrease them further. So why didn't I buy another needle? Doh!

I could also unpick all the ends and remove the glass beads (ouch!) and lengthen the body - assuming I recouped enough yarn from the sleeves. I think I would probably cast off with a straight hem, as others have done (thanks Ravelry!). The beaded pointy hem is great, but looks way too dramatic and bat-like to get much wear.

But what can I do about the neck? I would prefer to have some kind of fastening, but I think it would have to be lower down. Would that make the neckline sit weird? If I undo it to the neckline I'll have frogged the lot. Maybe that's the only answer!

Any ideas?

Saturday, 8 March 2008

Lucky FO and New socky project

Lucky is done - woohoo!

Still 3 weeks to go before the new owner is expected, so I went for a white button.

I love this pattern - so quick and easy, resulting in such a practical and cute little cardigan.

Hoefully it'll get a lot of wear soon. :-)

I have 1 more project to seam (remember the bamboo top?) and 1 secret project to felt, so time for a new occupant on those needles!

It's the turn of the
Tidal Wave socks, using the vivid pink cashmere sock yarn I bought from Kerrie at the HipKnits stand at the last knitting show I went to before we moved to Cornwall.

The pattern is very easy, and this is the first time I've tried using 2 circulars as opposed to magic loop. Not sure which technique I prefer yet.

The yarn is yummy, although the pattern definition isn't too good atm - hopefully that we will improve as the sock progresses...

Tuesday, 4 March 2008

Lucky pieces

I do love knitting baby garments. They're so quick!

Just 5 days after finding out the needles and yarn (stash = halo) I have all the pieces of Lucky finished.

Now comes the part I love (excuse me?) the best. Seaming. Still, at least that should be pretty quick too.

As for finding the right button... Well that could take some time.

Sunday, 2 March 2008