Archive for January, 2011

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a knitting review of 2010

January 12, 2011

This post comes with a heavy image warning. I’m trying to get a photo for every single thing I completed during 2010. So far I’m mostly there but still waiting on some pictures to come back from Germany… I will be blathering about woolly things and what they are made of. If this is not your bag I’m afraid you’ll have to wait until I can rustle up a fresh cat update next time.

You would not believe how good it feels to have this solid record of my achievements. I do LOVE giving away my knits, I could never keep them all, this way I get to enjoy them and so do the new owners.

The 2008/9 stragglers that got finished:

Rasta socks Started November 20 2008  September 10 2010

These were epic and knitting even just in the round with 3 different colours on two socks at the same time ended up too much. I separated them out during the heels. Still these were wonderful and well received by their new owner Andy. They were meant to be a present for bringing his drums as entertainment to our wedding. As you can see it took me the best part of two years to make them.

Basic socks from December 27 2009

Strong mitts November 10 2009  April 2 2010

Made to be butch but colourful for a colleague in Southampton. He sent back a great image of him wearing them. I think the wool was trekking XXL held double to make them supper strong. Oh and a little sneaky iphone cosy up there that avoided being put on Ravelry cos it was so small.

The 2010 finished objects:

The rug! January 9 2010  January 17 2010

After AM and E made me some giant knitting needles I gave them a try. This was 14 balls of wool held together at the same time and knitted. I love this rug but it had to move upstairs because apparently the cats also love to wipe after a toilet visit. Good thing its all really cheap machine washable acrylic. I’d love to make another a bit bigger but it did get rather difficult to knit when finishing because it was so bulky.

Sea blue Laminaria April 7 2010  April 24 2010

A very enjoyable knit. I wear this regularly now but it has gone a bit fluffy due to the pure merino wool used. It went very quickly because I was entertained by the stitch organization. This is one shawl I am likely to repeat.

Baby Cube blanket for Noah March 2010  May 23 2010

I wasn’t keen on making this but it worked really well. The modular design wasn’t too bad to sew together but getting the right arrangement for the cubes was confusing. The most painful bit was posting it to Noah and him not getting it because the postal system delivered when he was not in the house. His lovely parents went to pick it up for him and would not let them have it because they were not the baby on the package. One trip to Ireland later and the package arrived back with me, which made it all the sweeter when Scotty and I went to Colchester zoo to meet him and hand it over personally.

Ruby Shawl April 24 2010 July 9 2010

A beautiful pure alpaca wool which was an absolute pig to block. Given to my sister in-law for her birthday eventually blocked twice to get it to lay flat.

Plum night June 20 2010  August 2 2010

A variation on the pattern Annis from Knitty, I loved knitting this too and it was a great colour for my sister. Modeled by my niece. The beads were heavy but it added something special because it holds the shawl just where you want it. Knitted with a one off dyed ball of wool bought at Knit Nation 2009

Dragon wings August 25 2010 August 29 2010

My niece was in to dragons at this point, so wings were best. I love this wool which is Kauni Wool 8/2 Solids. There was an odd knot in the ball which made the colours of the full rainbow fault back in the wrong direction. Luckily for me this was a full repeat of one set of red colours, the rest are still in the ball waiting to be knitted and are a full rainbow.

Newborn presents October 15 2010  October 27 2010

Completed (sort of) before the arrival of said baby, nicknamed squeak before birth, now has an amazing name to go with his amazing parents. I got the most beautiful card from AM thanking me for these little items which were so easy to run up.

July 15 2010 November 30 2010

Anna owns a vegetable shop and spends all day in the cold, her old mittens were also hand knit by someone else but I wanted to go one better. I measured her hands by comparing them to mine and she was thrilled with the results. I gave her the rest of the wool to knit herself something to go with them.

Le Floof August 1 2010  November 27 2010

Hastily finished to wear to a winter ball, this was so warm! Now I will never doubt the warmness of cheap man made fibers. It looks great on too and I had a lot of compliments when wearing it in snowy conditions. 15 stitches wide done on the giant needles with 7 balls of wool held together.

Red Grey Selbu Moderne November 11 2010  December 11 2010

This kint was epic. It was my first real two colour knitting. I carried all floats over so that they are woven in to the fabric of the hat. I had so very many compliments on it too. I followed the free pattern available on the net. I was so very tempted to keep this and not give it to my dad’s girlfriend. Still She loves it and has also had many compliments on it and has been asked where they could buy one. At least I know its well loved. I also completed  a set of mitts which were s December 17 2010 and c December 24 2010. As you can tell they were taken down to the wire for a christmas present but were also loved when given to the same person as the hat. These are the item I am missing a photo for. They were in just the red without the grey, made out of colinette jitterbug with a picot edge top and bottom. The only odd thing I did with these is start from the finger end and not the wrist end making thumb decreases not increases.

The 2010 failures

I attempted a jumper following the Garland V-Neck Pullover pattern free from Ravelry. I made the rookie mistake of not thoroughly reading the pattern before starting knitting and failed to realise that the side increases all ended up on one side. It was frogged (ripped out) before any photos were taken.

Silky Shuffle

It was a great idea but failed due to using pure silk. If it was square pure silk would work but as soon as this was picked up the staggered rib just dropped out. It was not quite the way I intended. I want to write this one up as an easy free project but in a more suitable wool.

The UFO’s (un-finished objects) coming in to 2011

Jumper for me! November 2 2010

This is the first photo I have taken of the jumper. What with me taking 5 attempts over the past 5 years of knitting to never complete a jumper I feel like I’m trying to overcome a curse. Thing is I’m going to have to keep my arms apart because it appears I have two balls that are dyed quite a lot differently. Lets hope that the main body is odd enough for you not to notice this on the sleeves. The main body is complete up to the armpits, and I’d love to finish this before my birthday. Its based on Carona by CanarySanctuary. I did try this knit before but I used such rubbish wool I thought that was holding me back from completing a jumper too.

Shawl for my grandmother Started December 26 2010

A mix of 3 different shawl patterns amalgamated in to this smooshed up ball of stitches. I should really transfer to a longer needle but I’m sure it will all come out when I’ve finished. I want to complete this before Gran’s birthday too which is after mine. I think its entirely do-able because I only have 10 rows left to complete. A mix of 100% pure merino with 100% pure silk to give it loftyness, strength and mute down the brash colours and give it a bit of softness. I’m sure she will love it. Last time I visited I asked what her favourite colour was and she said turquoise. I think this is as close as I can get.

Spinning

I did spin one major item in 2010 but I have no idea when I started and finished it.

A 3 ply silk and merino mix carded together on my drum carder. over 200g of wool! woohoo, this spinning project was epic for a newbie like me. I have no idea what to make with it. I’m waiting for my christmas/birthday present to arrive (late January) which is a new yarn swift because my home made one has nearly wobbled to death. Then I can ball this up and get knitting with it.

And finally

I published my first ever For Sale knitting pattern, the Cable Cross Baby Blanket (raverly link). Only for sale on ravelry, because I have not set up any other payment system.

I’ve sold 18 copies since it was launched in July. I pay fees to Ravelry when I sell copies, and taxes via paypal on each transaction, so out of each £4 I charge, I get around £2.50 but that is money I would never have had before. I have gifted one copy too, to Knitted Bear who knits some lovely things. So if you managed to read ALL this, and leave a comment saying you want it, I’ll gift to the first 5 of you who want it!

Plus if you want it outside of ravelry, mail me or comment and we’ll talk 🙂 happy knitting for 2011!

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Happy New Year!

January 4, 2011

and its time for the resolutions.

My aims this year are to blog more… to knit and blog about it more, take more photos and try to get out and enjoy stuff. I’d like to lose weight, write some more knitting patterns for sale, have a really big holiday and spend more time with my family.

I want to avoid talking about work on here. Things are good at work. I want to keep it that way and sometimes shouting about what is wrong is what I want to do but it would not be productive.

Scotty and I really did become hermits over the christmas break. We did get a few things done but nothing amazing. Lots of sitting around eating chocolates and knitting/playing computer games.

The scritching  Lord UpLook

Both Otis and Jasper have loved having us around and having today back at work it was a real wrench leaving them. They did not look too happy about it either. The boys got a new water fountain for christmas and it works perfectly. The last one started leaking over the floor. One treat we got for ourselves was a new HD freesat recorder, now we can watch telly when we want and what we want.

We did nothing special for new year, and on new years day I woke up with a trapped nerve in my shoulder. Thankfully my wonderful husband has magical hands and has managed to rub my back, back in to place and after some more well-earned rest and a tub of tiger balm I’m mostly fixed.

my new brolly

I got a fabulous brolly for christmas from Scotty. I also got perfume, a knitting book, Toy story and Coraline blue ray. The latest Professor Layton game for the DS. The cats got a new water fountain and Scotty got Fallout new Vegas. Over all a wonderful christmas although very quiet and only saw the family once.

On to wooly things: I got 3 lots of wool. I’ve failed to add them to Ravelry yet so no pictures just yet. What I want to do is a little roundup of achievements in knitting for 2010. I suppose that is just a whole new post!

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Keeping busy and happy

January 4, 2011

Oh bums. I really did mean to get all this done during my extensive christmas holidays. I did have to work the gap between christmas and new year but all these are last years updates I missed. Be prepared for a rather lengthy post.

Our family all gathered together at my brother’s house for the annual visit to the fireworks and bonfire near his village for bonfire night. I didn’t take my camera but Scotty did:
ooooh!
met Iorweth which is AM’s new addition to the family. I’ve got one thing to say about that. Well baked that woman. I’ve seen him several times since and he just gets more and more lovely.

He is thoroughly adorable and amazingly cute. AM is amazing too, and has taken to motherhood naturally as if she always had a brood of 20 running around.

I took two days off work for Mums birthday. I used that time to visit my friend Mary, which was much more fun that sitting around moping because I miss my mum. I stopped past my Grans’ house because Gran was only 15 miles out of my way. The visit was really appreciated.

Mary was wonderful and looked after me during my visit. She tried on her wedding dress and we ate cake and went shopping. All within our means though. I think I wore her out. It was just lovely to visit and talk weddings.

Our family took a walk around Sherringham park just after mums birthday. It was lovely to go back. Somewhere I will always love to walk. I tried to get action shots of Shumba bouncing about but I failed to set my camera properly.

visit to London for work x2, once to see the new company that I will hopefully be working for come June. Another trip to do some testing on some new asset management software. Both very worthwhile trips. One thing that was not work related is I saw the security guards from Paris. (well not Paris exactly but the trip I took *cough* years back) It was lovely to catch up with old friends.

We attended Scotty’s work christmas party:
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we did not get drunk, however we did sneak past the queue for taxi’s at the station and managed to get home in good time. Scotty’s friend Russell stayed over and kept our cats warm in the spare bed.

Then the whole christmas and getting ready for it caught up with us. I managed to knit one hat and one pair of mittens for christmas presents. That is all. I hope to blog about them some other time because I don’t have suitable pictures now, and they are particularly fabulous even if I do say so myself. They were well received.