Sunday, 30 August 2015

2015 WIPocalypse - August Full Moon

How is it possible that it is very nearly September already?  The year seems to have flown past, and I had hoped to have accomplished more by now.

However I went to Knit Group yesterday and I do have two finishes to show you today, so I am very pleased with myself.  

These are my Cabled Handwarmers which have been waiting to be finish finished since the middle of April.  They are a Pat Strong pattern from Issue 38 of Knit Now, knit in King Cole Baby Alpaca in the Heather colourway (666).  They are knit flat and then seamed on the thumb side.  And they feel just gorgeous when I put them on.

Finish No. 2 is my Toe Up Socks knit in hand dyed yarn by Jellybeans Yarns in their Autumn Leaves colourway.  There is a mixture of techniques here.  All of the first sock and the foot and heel of the second sock were knit with Magic Loop.  The leg and cuff of the second sock were knit on dpns.  The heel of the first sock was knit using  wrap and turn short rows, while the heel of the second sock was knit using German short rows.  Neither technique was very successful, so I had to darn the resulting holes on completion.  Both socks used the Turkish cast-on and Jeny's surprisingly stretchy bind-off.  So I learned a lot and have a very colourful pair of socks to show for it.

Moving on to work in progress, the first section of the bottom border of Baby Express is now complete.  There is a tiny speck of light at the end of the tunnel on this piece.

And last but not least, here is Hitchhiker.  There are now 38 completed points on this shawlette but still plenty of yarn left on the ball.  Progress gets slower with every point as there are now over 150 stitches per row, but I am looking forward to wearing it this winter.

In other news, I have a week off work!  Tomorrow is a bank holiday, but I have the rest of the week off to do what I want to do.  I have some plans in place - a day out with my nieces, a theatre trip with my Mum - but also some time for me, myself and I.  More information in my next post :-)

All the best to you and yours, and may the frog stay away from your needles.   

Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Next verse, same as the rest

Apologies for the lack of posts the past couple of weeks.  The mojo has been somewhat lacking for various reasons.  

I went for a job interview, but didn't get the job - although the feedback was positive and helpful.  And thank you to anyone who had their fingers crossed for me - apparently all the candidates were good and it was very close.

I went to the physio, who said that, because I am very flexible in my lower back, my bottom muscles aren't pulling their weight and so the muscles in my thigh have been overworked.  I am now rolling out of bed every morning (except Sunday, my day of rest) and doing exercises before I do anything else.  I hope that progress has been made, but have another couple of weeks before I go back to the physio.

In other news, there has been progress on the knitting and stitching fronts.

As you can see, the left hand border on Baby Express is now complete and progress has begun on the bottom border.  At the current rate of progress, I might even get it finished before his first birthday :-)

I have finally got round to blocking my Cabled Handwarmers.  The plan is to take them to Knit Group on Saturday, stitch them up and finally have them finished well in advance of the cold weather.

The second toe-up sock is nearly done.  Since this photo, I have finished the leg and started the ribbing for the cuff.  I am hoping that in my next post I will be able to show you a finished pair of socks!

And I am still trundling on with Hitchhiker.  The photo shows points 1 to 36, and I have done point 37 since then.  However there is still a lot of yarn left, so I am not proposing to forecast a potential finish date just yet.

There is not really anything else to report at present, so I will love you and leave you, and may the frog stay well away from your needles.

Sunday, 9 August 2015

Keeping my fingers crossed!

I can't tell you any details yet, but if you would be so kind as to keep your fingers crossed for me on Wednesday morning, I would be very grateful.

There has been progress this week on all pieces as follows:

 Although my back stitching mojo has done a runner, I did manage to get it together this morning and start the last section of the left hand border on Baby Express.  Some progress is better than none, so I'm just going to carry on with the border for the time being and hope that when that's done, I can find the urge to finish the back stitch.

I'm also working my way up the foot of my second toe up sock.  I went to a different Knit Group on Monday evening within walking distance of my house, which was interesting and very different from my Saturday Knit Group.  I got quite a bit done on the sock that evening and will be going back this week.

Hitchhiker has now reached point 31, but there is still a lot of yarn on the ball.  I now have over 120 stitches on the needle, so each point takes longer to complete than the one before.  I'm not giving this piece any kind of deadline because I really have no idea when I am likely to finish it.

I have also knitted a swatch for my first jumper but I am holding off casting on until I have finished one of the other pieces.  Time is too tight to have three knitting projects on the go when I have deadlines on other things to keep in mind.

In other news, I went to the doctor this week  about on-going discomfort in my upper left leg.  He says I have a problem with my IT band and has referred me to the physio, so I have an appointment this coming week - watch this space.

Why are weekends always so short?  Back to work in the morning, so here's all the best to you and yours, and may the frog stay well clear of your needles.

Thursday, 6 August 2015

All the pretty things (especially for Leonore)

As the last of my Fibre East purchases arrived in the post this morning, and at Leonore's particular request, here are all the pretty things (even if some of the colours haven't come out too well in the photos).

This was my first purchase and I just couldn't resist.  Sock yarn by Sara's Texture Crafts in Watermelon Neon in her Oddsox - Line Art collection.  So one sock will be mainly pink with some green and the other will be mainly green with some pink.  She had quite a few different colourways but this was the one that grabbed me.

More sock yarn, this time from Unbelievawool.  This colourway is called Petrol Pot and yes, you can see silver sparkles in it.

Moving on, this is what came in the post this morning.  The photo is not good - it's more of a reddy pink than this.  From Native Yarns, three skeins of Clare Merino & Silk 4ply in the Astrid colourway which I bought specifically for this shawl, the pattern for which I also bought at Fibre East.

Then we come to the John Arbon Alpaca 2-3ply.  How could I resist - 1200 metres of 90% alpaca, 10% nylon in this gorgeous moss green for just £10?  Couldn't be done, but I have no plans for this as yet.

I took a couple of friends from Knit Group with me to Fibre East.  They usually go on the train, I was going to be driving there anyway - so a no brainer, and it meant I had company, which is always nice at these things.  Someone to say "Ooh, feel this!" to, and get a second opinion from.  So then they wanted to give me petrol money, even after I said not to be daft, because I would have gone anyway.  So I said to give me yarn instead, so my stash now includes two skeins of Garnstudio DROPS Lace, this one in the Purple colourway ...

and this one in the Red colourway.  We're talking 70% baby alpaca, 30% mulberry silk and 800 metres to a skein.  This should work out to two very luxurious shawls at some point and at a very reasonable price.

So there you are, Leonore, all the pretty things.  I am now on a yarn diet - no more new yarn until Yarndale in late September, but the knitting will continue and I will keep you up to date with that.

Sunday, 2 August 2015

2015 WIPocalypse - July Blue Moon Edition

Back again, but not a lot to show for it.  It's been a busy couple of weeks with the boss being off work, a funeral, Fibre East and something I can't talk about yet.

Fibre East is a yarn festival held near Ampthill, Bedfordshire.  After I started knitting last May, Fibre East was the first yarn festival I went to so I hadn't a clue what I was letting myself in for.  This year I went with two knitting friends and had a great time.  I was very good and only spent the cash I had taken with me, which was hard because I really wanted to buy all the pretty things.  And now I want to knit all the pretty things, but time is short.

Anyway, time for a progress report.  There has been so little progress on Baby Express since the last time you saw it that there was no point even taking a photo.

However I do have one finished toe up sock to show you and the beginning of the second.  I am going to use a different heel on this one in the hopes of getting a better result than I did with the first one.

And Hitchhiker now has 28 points to it.  There are now over 100 stitches to a row so progress is slower.  Basically I am now into the long hard slog part of it, but the colours are so lovely that I don't really care. 

Also I am now on a yarn diet until Yarndale at the end of September.  No more yarn until Skipton.  I went on Ravelry the other night and worked out how much yarn I have - nearly 39 miles worth!  I really do have to knit faster!!!

Tomorrow is going to be a busy day with the boss playing catch up after 2 weeks off, so I am going to love you and leave you, and may the frog stay well clear of your needles.