Monday 24 November 2008

Lots to tell!

I am one excited girl today.
Look what eventually arrived in the post! Through no fault of Claudia AKA Wollmeise I hasten to add. The yarn was delivered while I was on holidays and because it was registered they'd only hold it for three days before returning it. She was really kind to send it on again. Thanks Claudia!

Sockenwolle 80/20 in Red Hot Chili intensity medium
Sockenwolle 80/20 Peppermint Prinz in intensity medium. This is almost peacock shaded.

Aren't they just delicious? I can see what all the hype was about. Photos don't do these guys justice, the intensity of the colours, particularly the peppermint is unreal. The texture of the skein is great too; really firm but oh so squishy! I can't wait to knit these babies up!
Pattern suggestions welcome! I'm thinking Pomatomus socks for the peppermint, the other I'm not so sure, maybe a clapotis? Would I have enough yardage in 510 yards?

Project progress:

The hourglass socks are progressing, slowly but surely. These require concentration, so when I'm at home and have a free quiet minute, (yeah right) I do a few rounds.

I don't have startitis, no, not me. This new project is a figment of your imagination. It doesn't exist. But, for those of you suffering from delusions, here's the details:

Dylan Goes Electric from IK Summer 2005. For hubby for Christmas. I'm making the 50" chest as he's a big bloke. I hope to have it finished for Christmas Day (hahahaha).

I'm using the recommended yarn, Cascade Sierra. So far, so good, although it must be said this is being heavily modded. I decided I've had enough of sewing seams together as I suck like a duck at it, so here goes Elizabeth Zimmermann's EPS to knit it in the round. I did a gauge swatch (I know, I can't believe it either) and I got 5 sts to 1" so that's 250 sts = 100%. The rest is hopefully going to fall into place. We'll see. I swear though, if this works, I shall be the greatest knitter ever. Seriously this is a total wing it job. Still, you gotta try!
Here's a pic of my ultra scientific A+ art job of a sweater with the %ages worked out. Eat your heart out Michelangelo...

I shall leave you with a pic of where I wish I was now. Sunny Florida, by the pool in my SIL's fantabulous holiday home, knitting on my hourglass socks. If I were there, they'd have been finished now. :( only 50 weeks to go until next time......

BTW, all comments must state how uncannily like Heidi Klum I am in my tantalising swimsuit. Any others may bugger off with all due respect and kindness.

Happy week!

P.S Spot the butterfly by my shoulder? It was a dead one hubby found on the ground and thought would look "great" in the photo. Like I was Sleeping Beauty or something summoning nature to me. Personally I think it looks dead and reminds me more of Giselle in Enchanted in New York when she summons nature and rats and pigeons arrive...

Monday 17 November 2008

Lots of activity, not much to show

I've been really busy this week, chasing my tail. This always seems to be the way when you return from holidays, doesn't it? It's been a cycle of washing, ironing, cleaning, work (which is mental) and trying to squeeze in some knitting time too.
I made my Christmas puddings this weekend which was a bittersweet occasion. This has always been something my Mam and I did together and it was a day of great fun. This year she wasn't interested at all even going so far as to (gasp) suggest we buy one from a shop!(/gasp)

So, I took matters into my own hands and made them on Saturday. I was up until 2am steaming the first two, so I got this finished while I waited!

Yarn: Donegal Tweed Aran
Needles: 5.5mm
This knit up in no time and Alice is thrilled with it. "It's so huggy Mom" she said last night taking it to bed. Aww. I used two colours as they were essentially scraps I had left over. This picture doesn't really show the cables very well, but it turned out nicely I think.

Yesterday while the last pudding steamed (7.5 hrs) in between making breakfast, dinner, tea and Alice's swimming lessons I got cracking on this:

It's going to be a communion cardigan for Alice, allegedly. My crochet instructor says so anyway.

I measured Alice up and am going to make this an almost bolero style cardi that just comes to under her "bust" as her dress has a high waistline.

It's bloody difficult! I'm using a 2.5mm hook and some cotton thread held together with some lurex "for sparkle" the instructor says. Gotta have some sparkle apparently. It's so slippy I keep dropping the thread and my tension is all over the place.
This was the progress made by lunchtime yesterday. By bedtime last night I had finished the 4" up to her armpits to split for the sleeves. It's really hard to see the pattern here, the cotton is so stiff it kinda needs to be spread out to show it properly. Alice doesn't like it, she thinks it's too hard to the touch. I reckon washing would sort that, but tbh, I'm not feeling the love.

I think I might see a sneaky knitted alternative hiding in the wings.
Another FO, my first ever crochet project!
Crochet Tea Cosy, no pattern.
Yarn: Misc Acrylic
Hook: 4.5mm
Sorry for the crappy photo, taken on my mobile in Mam & Dads kitchen.
This was my test piece in class where my instructor taught me how to crochet. She took it home when I had finished and joined the front and back and wadded it for me. I gave it to Mam & Dad as chez moi is strictly a tea bag in a mug type house and Dad loves it!

This is a crochet scarf that I have no pattern for and no idea what stitches to use. I'm just doing trebles at the moment, but must see if I can find a nicer stitch than that.

Absolutely no progress on the second garter rib sock for Dads Christmas present, I must get going on that soon.

Hourglass Sock 2:

Again, nothing much doing. I was determined to get the crochet cardigan and the hot water bottle done so everything else seemed to suffer a bit.
I'm almost glad to be back in work today (I said ALMOST) for the break! What an exhausting weekend.

Tuesday 11 November 2008

Yarn Pron to the Extreme!


That classic song I Will Survive is ringing in my head this morning, "So now you're back, from outer space". I'm home but not here if you know what I mean; jet lag is a killer. Got home Sunday and was back in work yesterday.
We had an absolute ball on holidays. The weather was great for most of the time.
One of the best things we did was to go and see an NBA basketball game. The Orlando Magic were playing the Chicago Bulls. Magic won 96-93. Great stuff. I will definitely go again!

Plus, I was there for the election. I had specifically delayed the holiday by a week for this and I wasn't disappointed. I saw history in the making and I was proud.

Right, down to business then. Gotta give you what you came for!

Project Progress first I think, just to prolong the suspense a bit.

Hourglass Socks:

I got one done on the holidays. It's a difficult knit! For some reason I found it hard to concentrate on the pattern on the plane. I'm sure the wily among you will also spot the sock blockers I got. The disappointment is that I think I got the wrong size, the socks are loose on them. What a bummer.

Ok, here's the group shot of all the yarny goodness. Excuse the mess around it, unpacking and all that. Plus, most of it is hubbys guitar stuff.
The motherlode!!!

Here's the breakdown by store.

Knit Picks:
Imagination hand-dyed sock yarn in Damsel. These two skeins look different colours, even though the dye lot is the same... Gotta love the fairytale names!

Pixie Dust

Evil Stepmother

Shine Sport in three colours (Blush, Cream and Orchid) for the A Good Stripe Dress for my daughter at last. If she had her way I'd be knitting it now.

6 skeins of Palette yarn in Fog, Cream, Black, Fawn, Cornmeal and Bark. No idea what I'll use these for, but probably a foray into colourwork.

Wool of the Andes in Whisper

and Fairy Tale. Again, no ideas really. Perhaps a felted bag?

Gloss in Cocoa

and Pumpkin. I already had one of each of these so I decided to get another one to get a pair of socks out of each.

Sock Blockers in small. Damn US shoe sizes, I think I got a size too small. Well, I'm stuck with them now! I also got a magnetic chart keeper. Very handy and only $9.99!

Next up was Jo-anns and Michaels for some Sugar and Cream:

We went on a road trip over to Cocoa so I hit All Strung Out in Cocoa Beach and snagged me some SWTC Jezebel.

Then it was on to Knit and Stitch in Cocoa where I snapped up some more goodies:

Plymouth Alpaca Baby Grande. So soft! I think a nice scarf for this.

Some Berocco Comfort Sock. I can't believe how soft this is for an acrylic sock yarn. Hubby will be getting a pair of socks from this stuff.

More Berocco Comfort Sock

Some Tofutises

And finally some Brown Sheep Wildfoote

Anyone see the theme appearing here? Socks, socks, socks.

I also hit up Knit! in Longwood:

I got two skeins of Cascade 220 in blue. I already have 8 of these and wanted to get 2 more so I had a sweaters worth. I haven't checked yet, but I hope it's the same shade of blue!

This stuff is yummy - Great Adirondack Soxie in Monet. To me it's like a peacock feather. The colours are breathtaking.

The Alpaca Yarn Co Paca Peds in Fireside. mmm Autumn colours.

Next up was Sip & Knit in Maitland:

I love this store. Doni is really helpful and the yarns are great.

Pagewood Farms Fannie's Fingering Weight in Grapes on the Vine.

Cascade Heritage more yummy Autumn colours

Pagewood Farm Chugiak in Rainbow Sherbet. So vibrant! I'm thinking Firestarter socks.

Cascade Sierra in a lovely green. This is for the Dylan Goes Electric sweater for hubby

Last but not least, The Black Sheep in WinterHaven:

I made this trip especially to get me some Louet Gems fingering. I see this used all the time in sock patterns, so I had to have some.

Plymouth Sockotta

Phew! It's only when I see it all here that I realise how much I've bought. That's me done shopping for a year I reckon.
I almost forgot! I also got some Skechers Mary Janes. I have been eyeing these up for ages since I saw these on other blogs. I got two pairs, one black and one brown. I love these, so comfy, they make my socks look fab, and suitable for work!
My gorgeous shoes in a crappy photo taken under my desk with my Embossed Leaves.

And that's your lot! If you have lasted this far, I thank you. If you wish to contribute to my VISA bill, I thank you further. Otherwise, have a great day, and normal blogging shall resume shortly.