Friday, 30 January 2009

Knitting Slowdown

The knitting is still happening , but its kinda slowed down .
The Marlene socks are coming along nicely, and my Noro sweater is now going to be a cardi.
I am looking up patterns to use up my lovely sale bargains, and think I have decided on at least one - the girls at Flavakits helped me decide on one last night, always good to get advice from knitty pals .
Talking of knitty pals, our good friend Gale quite literally "popped over" from South Africa , to take her British citizenship oath . Karen was there to witness the solemn event , and took pictures of Gale , the new British citizen , next to the Queens' portrait , and even got to join in the National Anthem ! Gale was then presented with a Swarovski crystal paper weight....... with Inverclyde Council Crest engraved on it .
We had a lovely dinner at night to celebrate, then too soon Gale had to go back to SA. Hopefully it won't be too long before we see her again.
Had a lovely knitty evening at Flavaknits last night, although there was another large group in who were noisier than us ! Shock Horror!! This also meant it was very warm , so windows had to be opened before we all collapsed in a heap.
Margaret had brought her Heirloom knitting sample kit and pattern to show - it is gorgeous, one tiny ball of mohair , the other silk , a shawl pattern , and an Orenberg shawl pattern (doll size). The price was very reasonable (£4) , and the pictures of the shawls were beautiful. But...there was more....Margaret had brought her "Orkney Pie" shawl , I really wish I had my camera, but to hold it is to appreciate it more. It was so soft, and the lace patterns looked so intricate and delicate , the colour was of antique lace , quite divine !
Now there was quite a lot of touch-y feel-y going on last night.....but when there is so much lovely yarn being knitted into beautiful items its gonna happen!
So , Sandy's ankles were being she had her new alpaca socks on - such a lovely pattern, Dragonfly , and the colours are purple/raspberry shades. Kimberley passed round her sock, which will be for Lewis, so we could all feel how fabulous the yarn was (Wasn't quite finished or Lewis would have got his ankles stroked too! ). Val got her cables stroked on a lovely New Lanark sweater for her DH, it really knits up into a soft knit . We decided to stop the "stroking" at that point in case we got barred from the Cafe , but not until we all tried out Carolines' furry shawl , and admired Moiras' scarf .
Who said knitting was boring !
Its very dark and overcast today with lots of rain , a good day for some nice hearty lentil soup! Which is what I've just made , so now it is time for lunch , before I pick up the needles again .

Monday, 19 January 2009

...and we shall have snow!

Yesterday, on the way to Tramway knits, I drove through hail, sleet and a snowstorm. On the way home the sun came out , and it rained a bit! Yes, typical January weather in the West of Scotland.
Had a lovely afternoon at TramwayKnits yesterday , and there was lots of knitting, a book giveaway (least said etc....) and lots of good company and conversation.
Maggie gathered together some of our work to create a Knitty collage......
The pink knitting underneath , is the back of Maggies' new cardi, done in Debbie Bliss Cotton Angora , from left we have Thea's colourful chunky scarf in shades of lime and lilac , Evelyns' gorgeous sock knitted in Old Maiden Aunts sock yarn from K1yarns , its a sort of purple colourway with shots of bright green, the large dark teal mohair mitten is also Evelyns' , knitted for her daughter when she walks the dog . Then, underneath the mitten we have the piece de resistance, Ali's drop stitch scarf in a wonderful lime green shimmery ribbon yarn .
But this is not all yesterdays knitting/crochet ! Thea had at least another scarf on the go (fun fur I think!), Catherine started her cardi in the beautiful purple yarn she had bought at Iknit last September, Morven was knitting a gorgeous scarf with some pretty colour work , Alice was crocheting her (Angelina Jolie style) bag , and Fiona was knitting something gorgeous in Debbie Bliss Donegal Tweed , purple colourway.
The theme yesterday was.....the colour purple, and green and pink! I finished off my alpaca socks, which is mainly grey, white and ....lilac!
But in keeping with the purple theme , here is my OMA sock yarn in Gothic , all wound up and ready for casting on !
Isn't it beautiful! So a special pattern is required for a special sock yarn like this... and it is .... Cookie A's Marlene , from the latest Knit1 magazine .
I am hoping to start these very soon , then finish them in time to wear in February , as they are to be my February Socks for my "Knit a pair of socks a month for 2009" resolution . I am almost finished my January socks , unfortunately January is almost finished too .
Better get my skates on ! Besides this weather demands handknit socks .
Now Lilith , over at Old Maiden Aunt , is having a January clearout , with 20% discount on all her handpainted yarn . Always like to give a helping hand (Paypal is too handy!) , especially when there is discount on yarn like this ......
Meet my new laceweight yarn in alpaca, silk and cashmere , in the Icarus colourway .
It is Divine!
Another resolution.... to start the Icarus Shawl from Interweave Knits. This is part of the Summer of Lace group on Ravelry , last year I knit my silk tank and had ambitions to knit this shawl , but this year I hope to finally start it .
And perhaps a smaller one too , as I still have my fabulous Fairy wool from Fyberspates , which is crying out to be knitted up .
Talking of shawls , my good pal Kathleen has started her Hap shawl - go have a wee peek !

Thursday, 15 January 2009

And the WInner is.....

Me !
Bear with me while I blubber and snot and give an acceptance speech.......only kidding!
But enough of these actor types who ham up at the Awards , there are more important prizes to be had!
I have joined Amanda and Jeni's (of Natural Dye Studio and Fyberspates respectively) Unicorn Quest, and I may have "persuaded" someone else to join too!
The actual "Quest" starts in April, and you can purchase a skein or two a month of the specially dyed "Unicorn" fibre. There will be riddles to solve each month, and after the last one in December, you can try and identify what the fibre is (the clues being in the riddles).
In the meantime, there are side Quests to be solved and some prizes or discounts to be had . I managed to solve January's Quest and won a lovely cable sock pattern from the Natural Dye Studio - the prize draw at the end of the month is for some yarn, so fingers crossed!
AND.... after leaving a small comment on Heathers blog, I have won something again... (bows and waves !) Thank You Heather!
I'm very excited , all this winning and prizes is going to my head, but I promise not to blubber and give an incomprehensible acceptance speech !

Sunday, 11 January 2009

Wild West

The winds are blowing madly, the rain is driving down hard, and the sounds of the waves on the river can be heard for miles. The ferries are staying in port, cars are safely locked in garages, and the storm rages on!
Its not much different inside our house, bickering children, short-fused parents, and poor old patience wearing thin .
I should have listened to my inner voice that said - stay at home today, it won't get any better when you go out (to church!)
Maybe I should have been praying more , instead of giving DS2 the evil eye and chasing him as he ran riot during prayers, refusing to sit down when asked, and kept disappearing to the kitchen to pinch the after-service bisuits!
All this during a Christening Service, with a lovely wee baby in a bonnie white frock and happy smiling parents.
Yep! , I was that mother so NOT in control today. And its funny how it always happens in public, when there is such a BIG audience .
This too will the storm raging on outside.
I'll just sit in a wee quiet corner with my knitting , its the only thing that keeps me sane.
Blessed are they who invented knitting to bring peace and sanity to poor benighted souls, and they shall have everlasting peace and beautiful knitted garments . Amen!

Friday, 9 January 2009

The year of the sock begins!

Am knitting my January socks just now, using a plain pattern and the gorgeous Natural Dye Studio alpaca/merino blend. Bought this yarn a long long time ago, and am not sure why it took me so long to cast on with it. So soft and beautiful to knit with.
Here is DS2 having a look at it !
This is my Mum's knitting, is it for me ?
ooh look, wee sticks in this end !
Wonder what she is knitting - mum what are you knitting with wee sticks ?
She says it's a sock, doesn't look much like a sock to me ! Mmmm what d'you think ?
Think she's kidding !
Being January socks, I should actually be WEARING them, but I never got round to casting on UNTIL January, this means February's Valentine socks (which should be cast on , like, NOW) may not actually be ready to wear for Valentines day, I will probably just spend the day knitting them!
Its all down to organisation , a skill I completely lack! Still, onward and upward, aim for twelve, may get ..... six by the end of the year.
And here are some of my long-awaited yarn purchases, because Lilith and her fabulous site are such a yarn purchase enablers ! Its the lovely purply/pink Gothic sock yarn in Merino and the lovely green/blue Neptune 4ply alpaca/merino blend . Oh yes, the new Knit 1 magazine has some gorgeous sock patterns which I may try.
Gonna have some Roastie Toastie Tootsies this year !

Tuesday, 6 January 2009

Meet Knit-tea !

This was my gift from Secret Santa at Flavaknits , a (ceramic) knitted mug! Or a ceramic mug that looks like it is knitted, with some lovely cables too! It came with some lovely shortbread . Its my new favourite mug for my tea.
And of course , the shortbread is long gone , so now I have my lovely chocolate gingers and my daily paper for a bit of reading , I may even get to page 4 before something happens to call me away!
Got a note from Royal Mail which means I will need to visit the Post Office tomorrow , bother, was hoping to enjoy my parcel today . Its from Old Maiden Aunt and it contains wonderful sock yarn (Its weight-watcher yarn, so its not really part of the yarn diet - that means it will get cast on immediately).
Will have to cast on my February socks tomorrow then - the yarn has a wonderful name for its colourway - Gothic!
That means I can get on with January's socks just now , with the cold weather at present , I am needing lots of lovely warm hand-knit socks .

Saturday, 3 January 2009

If at first you do not succeed......

try try again!
Or visit John Lewis one week after the clearance starts!
Rowan Yarns - RYC baby alpaca and Rowan Kidsilk Spray , both at rock bottom prices - thats the yarn diet out the window !
Oh yes , also visited Old Maiden Aunt site - there's a bit of a sale going on there too (don't ask me how I know, but I'm hoping to get a parcel very very soon!)
Thank you all who commented on my socks - I have to try to NOT wear them out, I love them so much (so cosy when its cold out) . Socks feature in my New YEar Reolutions - see below
So, New Years Resolutions......
1.Knit a pair of socks a favourite pair need darning I've worn them so much!
2. Knit more from my stash (and try not to spend the overdraft!)
3. Knit for charity - will start Teddies for Tragedies this month !
4. Try to finish a WIP a month (ahem.... well see!)
5. Buy British - I never realised there were so many great British internet sites, this doesn't mean I'll not be buying from the USof A , just less!
A secret project.....connected to knitting . So may talented people out there, time to put them on the radar !
OK , yarn diet starts Monday - where have you heard that before! hehehehe!