Wednesday, 30 September 2009

Frogging Time

I am having a frogging time of late , if I am not tinking back mistakes in the Monkey Socks that I am knitting , I am ripping out whole projects - Ouch!
My latest indecision and bad knitting karma issues, is with the lovely scarf pattern from Knitspot called Fernfrost. I started out using a wonderful Skein Queen yarn of Cashmere and Silk in a lovely Teal colourway (crikey a bundle of knots would have looked great with this stuff!). I kept getting the (written) pattern wrong - so frogging ensued. Eventually I used the chart , hey presto it worked. Spoke too soon , needed to tink back . Worked again, oh no, more tinking back! ugh !
Decided it would be better as a one pattern repeat scarf (Stole has three repeats of pattern). Sigh. More frogging of the gorgeous cashmere .
Rummaged around stash and found the gorgeous aqua Unicorn , that's the ticket.
Cast on wrong number of stitches . Found out after two more froggings! Eventually got the right amount , and knitted up one pattern repeat (32 rows)
This . Is . It .
I like it . I really like it now . I am even getting into a rhythm with this pattern since I am only doing one repeat .
Trouble is , I think I really want to do three repeats of the pattern in this yarn, I like it so much.
BUT , I am talking myself into doing some gloves to match, so it will be staying at one repeat just now.
Three repeats .... now that calls for a different yarn .
How about some gorgeous Skein Queen Cashmere and silk in a lovely Teal colourway !

Tuesday, 29 September 2009

I know I should be ....

Vacuuming the carpets , dusting the surfaces , sorting the laundry (again !) wiping the kitchen worktops , putting some bleach down the toilets (three guys in the house only one girl , its a nightmare for me!) .
However .....
I will have a Cup Of Tea , Do Some Knitting , then fetch the boys from school .
Then ....
I will bake Muffins , with blueberries .
Just because ...
Thank goodness my boiler is installed tomorrow , it is getting a tad chilly here .

Monday, 28 September 2009

In the News today....

There was an article in a newspaper today extolling the benefits of knitting . It was well written , didn't fall into any "cliches" , and even pointed out that Knitting wasn't the "thrifty" option because of the hours put in to produce a finished item . The lady who wrote it was called Lorna Martin , who moved to the Shetland Isles as a child and was taught to knit Fairisle patterns by her teacher.
I liked the fact that she pointed out that although knitting is often associated with grey-haired females of a certain age , the main growth area in the knitting boom is amongst the under 35's ! Apparently sales of yarn and needles from John Lewis have increased dramatically in the last few years .
Here is the web-page of that Knitting article
At present I am trying to dramatically increase my "output" of knitting . I have started some gift knitting , amongst which are Monkey socks in Sunshine Yarns , Weasleys' Wizard Wheezes , meant for my young cousin . They are coming on a treat , especially since I had to start again after the first attempt was turning out too small . I had used 2.25mm needles , but had to go up to 2.75mm . I thought the bigger needles would make the yarn a bit lacy as it has a high twist in it , but it is turning out nicely .
I have done 4 repeats of the pattern , just another two to go before the heel. Lost a stitch last night and had to rip out a whole two repeats , ouch! Back on track now.
I've also started the Fernfrost scarf pattern although its not worth showing 5 rows done ! I am finding using the chart is easier , and I make less mistakes than I do with the written pattern . Using my Skein Queen Wisp yarn , so lovely !
Is anyone else starting some gift knitting yet ? (In my defence one of the projects is for a birthday! )

Tuesday, 22 September 2009

All the leaves are brown.....

and the skies are grey!
AND my boiler has died , so a new one is needed NOW!
Just as well I finished my Icing Swirl Hat , at least my head will be warm ......

Tuesday, 15 September 2009

I Knitty Weekend

I am still recovering from a fabulous weekend in London , at the Iknit show weekend. Two days of yarn goodness and workshops!
Its great to go to something like this , where everyone openly admires the knitwear , and we all play Pattern bingo (Feburary Lady Sweater , check , Pinwheel sweater , check , Cookie A socks , check! lol )
Three of us from Flavaknits went down together , and met up with some of the girls from Tramway knitters at the event . We were a gaggle of schoolgirls , chatting non-stop even though we had been up since 4.30am on the Friday morning to get our early flight!
Thankfully I had finished my Noro Cardi in time to take it with me - it is so cosy and I love it . I will be wearing it out shortly !
The great thing about Noro is that it is better NOT to block it , as you lose some of the texture and shape . This one curls at the edges beautifully , giving it a great casual look , that looks good with jeans .
I just love the way it stripes too! This pattern was very simple , although it needed a bit of tweaking , and was great to knit at knit night or in front of the TV .
Its a winner!
Now I promised myself I would be good at the Yarn Market at Iknit , as I have a ton of stash back home just crying out to be knitted .
But I wasn't!
And yet , I could have been even naughtier...... if all that yarny goodness hadn't been so overwhelming!
Excuse the poor macbook photo's , my DS2 has pinched my batteries for my camera to use in his Nintendo Wii (Star Wars Lego is soooo addictive!)
From left to right , first up is Ysolda Teagues' Whimisical Little Knits book , which encouraged me to buy the gorgeous Manos del Uruguay wool classica yarn and Knitpro DPNS! Why ? so I could start the Icing Swirl hat ! (Still not finished , don't ask why , least said soonest mended etc. )
You can see the peak of the hat , its the dark teal knitting at the top right.
In front of the yellow Iknit ticket is the Skein Queen Cashmere and silk blend 2 ply in Teal , next to it is Easyknits alpaca/silk blend in a red colourway called O-negative . Just behind that is natural Merino/silk laceweight from Hammonds (have little pots of dye as I want to try dye-ing that!) Its not too easy to see as the button is hiding it!
Perched on one of my Knitpro DPNS is a large button in Ash wood , from Toft Alpaca , just lovely (as was their yarn!)
And the two little scrunched up bits of knitting at the front are the projects from my Estonian Knitting class , where we learned both multi-colour knitting and lace knitting .
It wasn't just all yarny goodness , the food was great too! Lovely little sandwich shop close to the halls was where we has lunch on the Friday (Joes Sandwiches) . And on the Saturday evening , we went to the Anchor and Hope pub where we had the most fantastic dinner , Venison Shank , Poached rabbit , Pumpkin Gnocchi...... and the deserts ! WOW! It was like proper home cooking! Kimmie tried the delights of the home-made Damson Gin too (the rest of us had the wine) . The staff were so helpful and pleasant which added to the experience.
It was such a great but exhausting weekend , I am just beginning to recover now , and my Yoga class helped too!
Now to start saving and training for next year!

Wednesday, 9 September 2009

I can see clearly now the rain has gone .....

and the dark clouds and the flash flooding , traffic holdups .... yesterday was awful weatherwise , which was a pity because it was DS2 first FULL day at school . Up until now he had been in school until lunchtime , but yesterday he got to stay for lunch ..... and so did I . Parents were invited to come along and have "school dinners" with their offspring . It was good , but not as good as I remember . Still distance lends enchantment as my Gran would say .
Today , I spent a pleasant morning with the Flavaknits girls , having a coffee and a chat and trying to finish my Noro cardi . Finally it is cast off , and now for the difficult (boring) bit , the SEWING.
But first lunch . It is quite peculiar having lunch on my own after all these years having wee ones keep me company , so something comforting was in order.
How about Beef Noodle and Vegetable soup *. My lot aren't fond of noodles but I am (got me through my student years!) I used a beef stock cube , some "heat in the pan" noodles and a load of vegetables PLUS some fresh finely chopped ginger.
Soup to warm the soul . I just dissolved the stock cube in boiling water , added the vegetables and ginger , once it was warmed through I added the noodles for two minutes , and voila ! a filling soup .
Now , will it set me up for a bit of sewing - I hope so!
* Edited to add : sometimes noodle soup requires a FORK as well as a SPOON! I have changed my T-shirt!