In this post I am going to combine a quick stash update with a few more of my FOs from my hiatus. I was going to try and hold off on yarn purchases until the end of July when I will be going to Fibre East in Bedfordshire, but yesterday morning I felt like a little jaunt. So off I drove to a yarn shop which I knew of but had never visited before. They had quite a bit of yarn which I don't find in my usual yarn shop and some of it was on sale! I therefore came away with a little more yarn to add to the already ridiculous amounts of yarn in my stash.
And this is what I bought! From left to right, there is a skein of Rowan Fine Art sock yarn in the Kingfisher colourway, a ball of Noro Silk Garden Sock in the S8 colourway and a ball of Katia Socks Darling 4 in colourway 60. The Rowan and the Noro were on sale as either the yarn or the colourway are being discontinued. These are all new to me sock yarns and it will be interesting to see what they turn into eventually. Nothing is likely to happen to them just yet as I feel that I should be working more from deep stash, rather than casting on the new goodies.
All of my current projects are at that uninteresting to look at stage where, although you have made progress on them, it is either not immediately apparent or they haven't quite reached a point where you can say that you have hit a particular milestone. So I am going to show you the next few of my finished objects from my long hiatus.
Moving on from my Hitchhiker, the next two FOs were both Christmas presents - the first got finished in time and the second being slightly delayed.
Every year I make Christmas ornaments for my two nieces and up until Christmas 2015, these had always been done in cross stitch. 2015 saw my first knitted Christmas ornaments going on the tree. The pattern for these came from the "Keepsake Collection" and free yarn kit from Issue 86 of "Let's Knit" magazine. They were knit flat on 3.5mm needles and the letters are done in duplicate stitch. The first stocking was cast on on 31 August 2015 (forward planning!) and the second stocking was cast off on 2 October 2015. However, due to my tendency to procrastinate, they weren't actually sewn up and finished until 22 December 2015. That was the same day as I cast on the second Christmas project, the one that didn't get finished in time, mainly because I thought of it late and then had to order the yarn.
This is my third pair of Cabled Handwarmers designed by Pat Strong for Issue 38 of "Knit Now" magazine. I called them "Going Postal" as they were a Christmas present for my oldest friend who is a postwoman. They were knit flat in King Cole Baby Alpaca in colourway 502 (Grey) on 4mm needles. The idea was that they would keep her hands warm but still enable her to make deliveries easily, and the colour wouldn't show the dirt much or attract unwanted attention. Having cast on on 22 December 2015, the first handwarmer was cast off on New Year's Eve with the second one being cast on immediately and then cast off on 9 January 2016. They were blocked and sewn up before being handed over on 18 January 2016.
The third and final FO for this post was something for me. Back in July 2014, I went to my first yarn festival, Fibre East in Ampthill, Bedfordshire, which was a completely new experience for me, being more used to quilt shows. The first skein of yarn I bought was sparkly sock yarn by Fleabubs by Lala in her "Where the Wild Roses Grow" colourway. This then sat in my stash for the best part of 18 months until I decided that it was far too colourful to use for socks and that it deserved to be turned into something that would be seen. So I cast on Kelly McClure's "Sockhead Slouch Hat", which is a free pattern on Ravelry.
This photo was taken while it was still a work in progress but the only photos I have of it as a FO are rubbish, taken indoors in the winter in very bad light, and I wanted you to get some idea of the actual colour of the yarn. This was taken before I started the decreases, but basically you end up with a long slouchy hat with a rolled up brim. You can see the finished hat here.
There are still a couple more "holiday" posts to come, but I don't want to make these posts too long and picture heavy. So, moving on to what's happening in Real Life, my most recent trip to Slimming World revealed that, despite having had a very nice family Easter meal, I have lost another 1.5lb, bringing me to a total of 6lb in three weeks. What is more, having managed to restrain myself from eating any Easter eggs, I was also Slimmer of the Week, which was a nice surprise. The aim for this coming week is to get my half stone (7lb) award - this works out as about 3.2 kilos for people who work in metric.
In general, I am feeling quite positive and as if I am moving forward, instead of still being stuck in a rut. I have plans for the next few weekends and will report back as I tick these off. It's getting late now and I have to work tomorrow, so wishing all the best to you and yours!