Thursday 31 March 2011


I know I've been fairly silent recently, but lots has been going on. You're all expecting the Vogue/Designer Knitting review, and it's coming, but much more slowly than I had anticipated.

Last Saturday morning I went round to my parents as normal, and Dad wasn't well. He found blood in his stool on Friday, and said nothing knowing I'd be around on Saturday. Grr. He drives me nuts sometimes, the way he never thinks of himself. Anyway, I brought him straight to hospital, where he still remains.

There were no beds on a ward for him, so he was in the Accident & Emergency Dept until about 11.30 on Sunday night. God knows what he saw in his time there.

In the meantime, you may remember that I was due to travel to Maastricht on Monday morning for 3 days. I was in a right state. Who would mind Mam? My brother had only gone home the day before, I couldn't ring him and ask him to come up. But, I had no choice. Mam can't be left, I couldn't cancel the seminar. I rang him and he said he couldn't get up till Monday morning. So, I stayed with Mam on Saturday night and I had to ring my aunt (who's in her 70s) and ask her to stay with Mam on Sunday night. Talk about a long night, Mam wandered the house all night crying for Dad. I was absolutely wrecked.

Off I went to my seminar, worried sick about Dad. Turns out I spent almost all my time there on the phone home. Brothers car broke down halfway up, meaning my poor aunt had to stay 3 nights with Mam. I was so mad! The one time I go away for work and all this shit happens.

But back to the real patient. Dad had to fast for two days while he waited for an endoscopy to see if it was a perforated ulcer, as they were too busy to do him the first day. Now my Dad is 88, and fasting for two days isn't easy. They did the scope, and apparently found another polyp in his bowel, but no perforated ulcer. His bowel cancer the last time was in a polyp, so I'm worried sick. But the doctors said it's too small to worry about. My thoughts? It wasn't there during his last CT scan, so is must have recently grown. Doesn't that mean that it will become something to worry about unless treated? I dunno.

So he's still in hospital, waiting for a colonoscopy that was meant to be done today, so he's been fasting since yesterday morning again. As of writing (19:47) he still hasn't been done. I visited him today and briefly saw the doctor but couldn't discuss his case with him, he was gone so quick. He seemed to be of the impression that Dad could go home after the scope. Surely they won't do that now, at this hour of the night? And if not, who's going to mind Mam? I have to go back to work tomorrow. I had today off for time owed due to travelling.

I'm so sick of all this stress. Truly. Why does something always happen to Dad when I'm about to go somewhere? You may remember I was about to go to America before when he collapsed at home and didn't get discharged until the night before I was due to go, and only if I arranged private nursing care at home for him. I honestly think the stress of caring for Mam is what's making him so ill. I don't know how he does it. Even my aunt finally agreed with me that it's time Mam was in a home. If only I could convince Dad too.

So, that's a bit of a pity party, isn't it? And it's not over yet, either. Everything depends on Dad getting home, and there being nothing wrong. But there must be something wrong, you don't find blood in your stools for nothing. Oh, and I almost forgot. Mam has a dermatologist appointment (in the same hospital) at half 11 in the morning. Yeah. She's not going to make that.

So hopefully you can understand the delay in the VK review. Normal service will resume asap.

Good knitting!

Friday 25 March 2011

Vogue/Designer Knitting Spring/Summer 2011 Review

Better late than never, here goes with a review of Vogue/Designer Knitting Spring/Summer 2011. I have taken all of the photos from the Vogue Knitting website unless otherwise stated.

I plan on pricing the largest size available for each pattern, as that is the one I would most likely knit. If I can get the yarn in Ireland, I use that price, otherwise Euro prices are US Dollar prices converted, not inclusive of postage.

Substitute yarns I suggest are my own choice, your mileage may vary. I try to use the same fibres as the suggested yarn where possible, but will use others I think would be good if I can't find it. I have used 4 main online Irish retailers for my prices and will vary between them for fairness. I haven't priced anything using mostly acrylic, but if you want me to, let me know in the comments. Also, if you want me to say where I am getting my prices from, let me know too.

Let me say that I love this magazine, and don't mean this review as poking fun at it, more a light hearted reflection of it, and also maybe it will make the magazine think about the cost of the sponsored yarns it uses and the sizes it offers.

On a side note, a lot of the patterns in this issue use sport weight yarn. This weight is very difficult to get here, we really only have 4ply/fingering or DK. Sometimes I'll switch between them when recommending subs if I think one might be better than another. My advice though, would be to SWATCH before using.

As always, the Meg Swansen article is worth the price of the magazine alone, IMO. She talks about the purl stitch, and it's use in colour knitting such as Bohus. Brilliant stuff.

The Nicky Epstein patterns this time are for pillows using more icord. Basically long strips of icord plaited or twisted and sewn on to existing pillows. *yawn* I couldn't get pictures of them on line. You're not missing anything.

You'll also be glad to hear there's no appearance by Josh Bennett in this issue. Perhaps he did take the hints last time and stayed away. :)

On to the good stuff now. The first section is called Knits Bloom!/It's all white now. Maybe the reference to bloom is why they stuck ginormous flowers in the pictures and on the models heads. Absolutely mad looking.

The first pattern is #1 Cardi Vest by John Brinegar:

Size: 5 sizes, 32 - 48"
Yarn: Trendsetter Dolcino, 75% acrylic 25% nylon, 50g/100yds
Weight: Bulky
Cost to Knit: $120.45 €85.13

The cost seems high for an acrylic yarn to me. However, it's a ribbon yarn so I found it hard to find a sub. I suppose Lousia Harding Sari Ribbon at a push, for €110.50. As for the cardi, it's a bit meh I think. I really don't like the rolling at the armholes.

The next pattern is #2 Scoop Neck Dress by Mari Lynn Patrick:

Size: 4 sizes, 32.5 - 39" (what a shitty size range)
Yarn: Tahki.Stacy Charles Solaris, 70% rayon 30% linen, 108yds/50g
Tahki Crystal, 75% polyester 25% cotton, 144yds/25g
Weight: Solaris: DK, Crystal: Lace
Cost to knit: $174.95 €123.94

Hmm. Crazy price to knit. I know the above pics aren't great, they don't show the whole garment. Basically it's a spaghetti stap long tunic type thing with an enormous kangaroo pouch pocket right in front of the models lady bits with some ribbing at the bottom. It's ridiculous. Very bottom heavy, you'd want to be a waif to wear it, and even then I think you'd look huge. WTF is the hairy necklace thingy she's wearing, too? Mad altogether. You could sub for Garnstudio Bomull Lin for €67.20 and Anchor Metallic for €19.35

Next is #3 Drape Neck Top by Jacqueline Van Dillen:

Size: 6 sizes, 33.5 - 48"
Yarn: Cascade Sierra 80% cotton, 20% wool, 101yds/100g
Weight: Worsted
Cost to knit: $67.50 or €47.76

First off, I love this yarn. It's great to knit with, wears brilliantly and comes in a load of lovely colours. I knit hubby's Dylan Goes Electric jumper with it 2 years ago and it still looks great. The jumper is quite nice, I like the neckline. But, the bottom of the lace panel in the centre looks weird. It ends before the garter stitch hem. I'd continue the garter stitch all the way across if it were me. Subs? How about Brown Sheep Cotton Fleece. I've no price for it at the mo as the Irish stockist is out of stock. Garnstudio Cotton Viscose would set you back €42.

#4 is V Neck Pullover by Carol Meldrum:

Size: 6 sizes, 36 - 56.5"
Yarn: Schulana Fashion Silk 85% silk, 15% polyester 120yds/50g
Weight: Bulky
Cost to knit: $322.15 or €227.88

Hahahahaha what kind of price is that for a jumper with a v so low your belly button would catch cold? A joke. Apart from the low v, it's just a boring jumper, no unusual details for me. I think Carol Meldrum is the designer who wrote Knitted Icons, which contains patterns for dolls based on famous people. If so, I definitely don't like this, as that book resulted in the ugliest FO ever for me, a David Bowie doll I made for hubby. Poor David still cries to be put out of his misery, such is the agony of his existence. A sub was hard to find for this, as I said before bulky yarns are scarce. All I could come up with was Lousia Harding Rosetti for an equally scandalous €174.15.

Next we have #5 Two Button Vest by Jacqueline Van Dillen. The second pattern for her, I hope she isn't going to become the new Josh.

Size: 6 sizes, 33 - 51.5"
Yarn: Bergere de France Origin Soja 84%cotton, 16% soy 192yds/50g
Weight: Worsted
Cost to knit: $152 or €104.96

It's ok, I guess. I think if I were to make it, I'd shorten it and add sleeves. I do like the roll neck. I'd certainly be looking for cheaper subs, though. Tivoli Cruise Aran for €44? That's more like it. Or Garnstudio Paris for €38.20.

#6 is Eyelet Wrap Top by Theresa Schabes:

Size: 4 sizes (boo) 33 - 45"
Yarn: Plymouth Covington 100% cotton 184yds/100g
Weight: Aran
Cost to knit: $82.50 or €56.97

I kinda like this one. I have a bit of a love affair with wrap tops. Pity I'd have to upsize it though. That will probably put me off it. Again, I'd also add sleeves. Even a cap sleeve would soften it a lot. Another enormous flower in this photo. Looks crazy. Subs could include Tivoli Cruise (again, it's a great workhorse cotton yarn) for €54.50, Garnstudio Paris for €49.45 or splash out with Blue Sky Alpacas Organic Cotton for €129.35. Nah, I wouldn't either.

A new section now, Under Cover. The first pattern is #7 Hooded Jacket by Rebecca Taylor:

Size: 2 sizes (pfffft) 48.5 & 58.5"
Yarn: Rowan All Seasons Cotton 60% cotton, 40% acrylic 98yds/50g
Weight: Aran
Cost to knit: $238 or €164.35

Another laughable cost to knit. And 2 sizes? A joke. But, does that mean the model is wearing a 48.5" garment? There's something hinky going on there. You should see the main photo in the magazine, the model is in a mad pose, like she's pretending to be running, but standing still and staring seductively at the camera. I bet she fell over straight after the photo was taken, she looks so uncomfortable. You could sub Wendy Traditional Aran 500g and knit this for €75.80 if you so desire.

Next is #8 Long Cardigan Vest by another resident favourite, Twinkle:

Size: 5 sizes, 37 - 52"
Yarn: Twinkle Cruise 70% silk, 30% cotton 120yds/50g
Weight: Sport
Cost to knit: $143 or €98.75

Considering the cost of previous Twinkle items to knit, this one is quite mild for her. It's an interesting enough idea, the yarn is held single for the bottom, then doubled for the top. It's a bit plain though. I'd love to stick a dramatic cable up the back (of the cardi that is). Sub? There's nothing cheap, really. Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino is €71.40 or Rowan Silk Wool for 119.25.

Another section, Sheer Beauty. The next pattern is the cover pattern, #9 Lace Poncho by Shiri Mor:

Size: 1 size (aaaah) 53.75 x 26/75"
Yarn: Patons Grace 100% cotton 136yds/50g
Weight: Sport
Cost to knit: $98.82 or €68.24

Basically it's a rectangle you put your head through. I do love it, though. Lace gets me every time. I have visions of myself as an uber skinny (hungry) waif, wearing one of the "special" garments featured later on, with this covering me and sipping champagne on a beach in Monaco. Yep, dreaming. It's the only way this garment will ever cover me! You could sub Patons 100% cotton 4ply for €41.65.

The next couple of patterns are a bit mad. This one is #10 Mesh Topper by John Brinegar. No. 2 for John. Let's not make a habit of it, shall we?

Size: 5 sizes, 36 - 55"
Yarn: Tahki Brilla Cotton/Rayon mix ( no %ages, sorry) 120yds/50g
Weight: Fingering
Cost to knit: It's on sale at at the mo. $47.76 or €32.98

Hmm. What can I say. It reminds me of this:

Yes, the string vest. Beloved of 70s men everywhere. Not something I'd be wearing any time soon. However, if you are so inclined, you could sub Lang Baby Cotton for €30.

Next we have #11 Lace Cover Up by Renee Lorion:

Size: 24 x 50"
Yarn: Claudia Hand Painted Yarns Linen 100% Linen 270yds/100g
Weight: Sport
Cost to knit: $58 or €40

It's not covering very much for a cover up, is it? I do like the models vintage togs underneath, they look kinda woven. Cool. As a shawl, it's ok I guess. You could use Garnstudio Lin instead for €25.75 if you like. I wouldn't imagine gauge would be very important here, so knock yourself out.

I'm going to take the next two patterns together, #12 Bias Lace Scarf and #13 Bias Rib Scarf by Lisa Buccellato:

Size: not relevant, really
Yarn: Fibra Natura Flax 100% Linen 137yds/50g
Weight: DK
Cost to knit: $23.70 or €16.36 each

Meh. Bland. Boring. Really hard to see any details as they're on top of each other and wrapped in knots. Really poor shot, I think. Sub away with something fun like Araucania Ruca Sugar Cane yarn (nom, tasty yarn) for €25 each scarf.

Next is #14 Lace Tunic by Brooke Nico:

Size: 3 sizes, 33 - 49.5"
Yarn: Classic Elite Katydid 100% cotton 90yds/50g
Weight: Aran
Cost to knit: $102 or €70.46

I really like this. It's like an Estonian shawl in dress form. I bet Nancy Bush (Queen of Estonian lace shawls) is raging she didn't come up with this idea before. It looks great, but all those nupps would freak the crap out of me. Nupps are not the easiest thing to do, although maybe they could be ok in Aran weight. In laceweight, they're a right bugger. Sub with the usual aran cotton suspects like Tivoli Cruise for €32.70, Garnstudio Paris for €30.10 or splash out with Blue Sky Alpacas Organic Cotton for €79.60

Now we come to the good stuff. These next two patterns are Vogue Knitting comedy gold.

#15 Gold Tie Bikini by Elizabeth Kosich:

Size: 3 sizes 29 - 33"
Yarn: Katia Gatsby Rayon/Nylon/Metallic
Weight: Sport
Cost to knit: $44 or €30.39

#16 Colour Block Bikini by Elizabeth again:

Size: As above
Yarn: as above
Weight: as above
Cost to knit: $55 or €37.99

OMG. OMG. Seriously. Did they just do that? I'm speechless. Honest. I've sat here for a while trying to think of what to type that isn't just loads of hahaha. Imagine what would happen when these got wet. The gold one has absolutely NO support up top, and is held together with an icord knot at the bottom. DISASTER. The bottom one has a nice metallic buckle in the bra, but the bottoms are mad. I bet they'd fall down just walking. Plus I feel sorry for the poor models. They look starved and frozen solid. Just wrong. If you want to knit them for the laugh, go right ahead. I don't have a sub to recommend, I just couldn't bring myself to look for any.

After those, I could do with a nice pattern to calm me down. Alas, we instead have #17 Fitted Top by Melissa Matthay:

Size: 3 sizes (gah) 33 - 39"
Yarn: Artyarns Silk Pearl 100% silk 170yds/50g
Weight: DK
Cost to knit: $156 or €107.77

I just don't know with this one. The boobage looks ENORMOUS with the garter stitch. I do like the zig zag bodice, but not the holes up the middle. But the back, oh dear. The joins of the strips to the body are a mess, especially at the top left. The whole thing looks sloppy. You couldn't wear a bra with this either, which would mean my boobage wouldn't remain in the garter "cups" for long! Sub Blue Sky Alpacas silk for €54.75 or Sublime Cashmere Merino Silk for €35.70.

The next section is called Postcards from Rio and features lively Latin colours. First up is #18 Cropped Tank Top by Jacqueline Van Dillen. This is Jacqueline's third pattern. Do we need to have words, Jackie?

Size: 5 sizes, 31 - 41"
Yarn: Manos del Uruguat Serena 60% alpaca, 40% cotton 170yds/50g
Weight: DK
Cost to knit: $52 or €35.92

A pretty top. Nice and simple, with a pleasant stitch detail on the bodice. I like it. You could sub Garnstudio Cotton Viscose for €16.80 (!) or Louisa Harding Willow Tweed for €35.70

On we go to #19 Triangle Top by Halleh Tehranifar:

Size: 3 sizes 30 - 55" (what a leap!)
Yarn: Rowan Calmer 75% cottton, 25% acrylic 175yds/50g
Weight: Worsted
Cost to knit: $111.60 or €77

An expensive little strappy top. I could have sworn Calmer was available here, but I couldn't find it. The triangles are cleverly placed, as they give the illusion of a smaller waist than might be there naturally. Sub Rowan Summer Tweed for €77.40 (ouch) or Kerry Woollen Mills Aran for €39.

Next we have #20 Striped Top by Loren Cherensky:

Size: 6 sizes 33 - 53"
Yarn: Prism Rapport 66% bamboo, 34% cotton 216yds/113g
Weight: Worsted
Cost to knit: $160 or €110.52

A scandalous price, methinks. Prism yarns are very expensive. It's a nice simple summery top, that could be lovely in the right colours. Sub a brilliant alternative in King Cole Bamboo cotton for a mere €34.65. It's a fantastically priced yarn.

On the home stretch now. #21 Wrap Effect Top by Mari Lynn Patrick again:

Size: 3 sizes 34 - 38" (I'm going Godzilla on this one)
Yarn: Aslan Trends Prima Clasico 100% cotton 111yds/50g
Weight: Worsted
Cost to knit: $115 or €79.44

Right. Bring on the crazy. Three effing sizes? And the largest is 38"? What the hell, Vogue. I am so mad with you right now. I love this top, it's a classic line, and would look great on larger figures. With sleeves, of course. So 3 sizes? Grrrrrr. I would sub with Tivoli Cruise for €32.70 if I wasn't so mad.

#22 Cable Collar Top by Norah Gaughan should calm me down:

Size: 5 sizes 33 - 50"
Yarn: Berroco Linsey 64% cotton 36% linen
Weight: Worsted
Cost to knit: $80 or €55.26

Ah, Norah. Is there nothing you can design that I wouldn't like? You are a kindred knitty spirit. I love the fold back collar, the cap sleeves and the plain body that doesn't detract from the collar. Yum, yum yum. I will sub Drops Bomull Lin for €54.60 or Rowan Summer Tweed for €64.50.
Feeling better now.

#23 Bow Tie Cable Top by Cheryl Murray is next:

Size: 6 sizes, 32 - 51"
Yarn: Knit One, Crochet Too Babyboo 55% Nylon, 45% bamboo 115yds/50g
Weight: DK
Cost to knit: $69.55 or €48

Another nice simple top, although I would make it not yellow and a bit longer. I'd sub the King Cole Bamboo Cotton again, for just €29.70. Bargain.

#24 Diagonal Front Vest by Mel Clark:

Size: 2 sizes???? 34 & 38"
Yarn: Blue Sky Alpacas Worsted Cotton
Weight: Worsted
Cost to knit: $55 or €37.99

2 sizes. 2 measly sizes. What a waste of magazine space. Not that I'd knit it anyway. It's not my kind of pattern, but I do know lots of people who would like something like this. Although, it could look cool over a shirt for meetings in work. Hmm. Maybe I do like it after all, which makes me even madder that it's offered in two crappy sizes. Grr. Y'know, Vogue, you make it hard to like you sometimes. If you do fit into one of the two sizes, you could sub Blue Sky Alpacas Organic Cotton for €49.75 or the ubiqitous Tivoli Cruise for €27.25.

Next up is #25 Lace Panel Top by Louisa Harding.

Size: 5 sizes, 31.5 - 43.5"
Yarn: Louisa Harding Ondine 100% cotton 119yds/50g
Weight: DK
Cost to knit: $87.45 or €65.45 in an Irish yarn store. The only recommended yarn in this issue that can be sourced here!

A cute top. Shame about the straps. It would be lovely if there were some shoulders and cap sleeves on this I think. And what the OMG is the necklace the model is wearing? It looks like giant slices of aubergine or cucumber on a string. Crazytown. You can use the original article, or sub for Drops Safran for a mere €21.60.

Our final section is titled Summertime Blues. The first offering is #26 Lace Top by Yoko Hatta:

Size: 4 sizes 36.5 - 51"
Yarn: Zealana Kiwi 40% merino, 30% possum, 30% cotton 149yds/40g
Weight: Fingering
Cost to knit: Could only find this on a German site, $100.82 or €69.65

I like this, a lot. Again with the crossover front. Very flattering to us largies. The stitch pattern is cute, too. I could see myself wearing this to work over a white t-shirt and looking quite smart, thank you. I'd sub Lang Baby Cotton for €22.50 or Drops Alpaca for a nice drape for €23.10

Almost done, hang in there! #27 Buttoned Lace Vest by Pat Olski:

Size: 3 sizes (!) 31.5 - 49.25"
Yarn: Brown Sheep Cotton Fleece 80% cotton 20% merino 215yds/100g
Weight: Worsted
Cost to knit: $55.20 or €38.13

I love the idea of this top. The dual colours, the stitch pattern. The sleeves? Not so much. Look at the photo on on the right, at the crappy join of the neckband. Yeah. If I were to knit this, it would take a lot of mods. The recommended yarn is lovely too, I'd use it in preference. In fact, I have 10 skeins in a tea rose shade in my stash... hmm. Subs could include Artesano Aran for €89.55, Lang Merino for a woolier garment for €60.90 or Drops Nepal for €41.60.

Our penultimate pattern, #28 Lace Cardi by Courtney Kelley:

Size: 2 sizes 30 & 40.5"
Yarn: The Fibre Company Savannah 50% merino 20% cotton 15% soy 15% linen 160yds/50g
Weight: DK
Cost to knit: $90 or €62.17

Talk about a mouthful of fibres in one skein. But the big bugbear is 2 sizes. TWO! Vogue, hang your head in shame. Lazy lazy pattern writing. I like this, but only a little. The picture on the right does it no favours, the models bum looks a tad large in it, no? The rest is nice, though. I'd sub Malabrigo Silky Merino for €62.65 or Drops Cotton Viscose for €22.40.

And so we come to the final pattern. Yay, I hear you say! I can go have a cup of tea now!
Here it is, #29 Chevron Lace Top by Mari Tabita:

Size: 4 sizes 31.5 - 40"
Yarn: Koigu Mori 50% silk 50% merino 185yds/50g
Weight: Fingering
Cost to knit: $175 or €120.89

Yeah. You read right, €120 for this top. Not gonna happen. It's a decent top. Nothing I haven't seen before, but decent enough. I'd sub Malabrigo Sock for €56.70 and spoil myself.

So that's your lot! I hope you enjoyed the review. I guess it wasn't too bad an issue overall, certainly better than the previous winter issue. But still some mad prices and lazy sizing.

Please leave me a comment and let me know what you think, if you'd like them to continue, if there are other publications you'd like reviewed, etc etc. It'd be nice to get some feedback.

More surprises!

I came home from work today, to find another surprise package had arrived!

The really lovely Two Cables n' A Frapp... had a prize giving on her blog recently, and I was one of the winners! It arrived today, and this is what she sent me:

Poems of Color, Knitting in the Bohus Tradition. I can't believe it, how generous is that! Thanks SO much, I've been eyeing up this book for a long time, and I'm really looking forward to curling up and reading all about the history of this gorgeous knitting tradition. Head on over and check her blog out, it's great! Aren't knitters great? Who else would do such a nice thing.

I was reading my Vogue Knitting last night, and they have a section on all the different kinds of yarn bowls you can get. I saw this one, and was smitten:

They're from Maid Of Clay on Etsy. She will personalise your bowl with your name or whatever you want! Isn't it fab? I'd love one of these.

Good knitting!

Thursday 24 March 2011


Look what came in the post today!

The Spring/Summer edition of Vogue Knitting. I can't wait to read it, and of course do another review, if you want.

The lovely Zita from Springwools included some fun goodies in the envelope, too:

Isn't that the best fridge magnet ever? I absolutely LOVE it. And, a note:

What a lovely note. It's the personal touch that I love. Thanks Zita!

Now to read up furiously & get going on the review. I hope to have it done before I go to Maastricht on Monday. Oh, speaking of which, if anyone knows of any yarn stores in Maastricht, please let me know! It's a long shot, but knitters know everything, don't they?

Good knitting!

Wednesday 23 March 2011

The hard slog

This week has been a hard slog. I've been plugging away at this:

My Ethereal Top. I've gone beyone the empire waistband and am on the skirt. I struggled to find a stitch for it, so I decided to stay plain. I just did some purl bands for the waistline:

I don't know if you can see the two bands of purl stitches. I'm increasing 4 sts every 5 rounds to flare out the skirt part, I hope it will be enough to give it some flare. I'm not so sure, but I'm giving it a go!

It was Alice's birthday yesterday, she was 10. TEN! What the hell? A decade old? I have NO idea where those ten years have gone.
I made her Alton Browns Sour Cream Cheesecake from Good Eats. We love our cheesecake here. It was delish:

Needless to say, there's not much left!

Hubby is away until Friday, so I'm having a girly couple of nights. Slushy movies & tv await! Yipee!

Good knitting!

Sunday 20 March 2011

Speedy Knitting & Spring Cleaning

So I decided to give the blog a bit of a spring clean. Do you like the new look? Let me know what you think, and if you would prefer anything changed.

ándale ándale, arriba arriba! (as Speedy Gonzales would say). I knocked out this baby in a couple of hours last night & this morning.

I figured since I bought hubby the Kindle for his birthday I should make him a cover for it too.

Pattern: Cables for Kindles by Paulette Wright
Yarn: Araucania Nature Cotton, about 3/4 of a skein
Needles: 5mm dpns

A grand easy pattern, but knitting on such big dpns is a pain. Plus, I think I'm never going to find a way to prevent the loose stitches either side of cables. No matter what I try they always come out loose. Still, hubby loves it so it has done its job. :)

So I don't know if I said I'm off to Maastricht on Monday week for an EU seminar, but I am. I checked my wardrobe, and found it to be sorely lacking in decent respectable formal wear. I went to the shopping centre this morning to get some shirts and came home empty handed. It's SO hard to get decent larger size clothes in this bloody country. I'm going to look a right state when I go. :(
Right. Pity party over. This has steeled my resolve and I'm damn well going to finish the Ethereal top before I go so I can wear it and blow their Dutch socks off at the seminar. Oh yes.

While I was at the shops today, I found this cardigan on sale for €30. I love it. It drapes at the bottom a bit like Carol Fellers Adrift, but has long sleeves and lovely lacy stitch panels all over it. It's really fine knit. I tried to get some pictures of the stitch panels.

This is the sleeve cuff. You can also see a bit of the panel at the elbow:

This is the top of the back:

This is the front chest:

This is the empire waist at the back:

And this is the bottom front:

There's also a "buttonband" of the above stitch all around the front. Isn't it cool? It looks lovely and drapes really well. I wonder could I incorporate some of the panels into the Ethereal top? I might see if I can deconstruct the panels and try some of them out.

Good knitting!

Saturday 19 March 2011


It's amazing what you can do when you're motivated.

I finished Dads socks on Thursday night, as planned. I was really delighted to get it done, and the pair were re-united this morning when I went round to Dads:

Pattern: Made up out of my head plain 64 stitch socks
Yarn: Zettl Zockenwolle Cortina
Needles: 2.5mm dpns

Talk about bargain socks. 4 balls of this yarn for €4.99 in Lidl, and these socks took a ball and a half. That's what, €2.50 for a pair of socks? I decided to photo them on Dads piano, as they are black & white (duh) but also because you may remember that the birthday card I made him was piano themed too. I like things to be matchy-matchy. It's the inner OCD in me.

Then I said I wanted to knit Alice a jumper for her teddy for her birthday on Tuesday. Done!

Pattern: Brother Bear One-Piece Sweater from the Knitting Pattern A Day Calendar 2011
Yarn: Random yellow acrylic from the stash
Needles: 5mm Knit Picks Options

I picked this pattern as the bear in the pattern photo is the very same as this one. This is Ben, one of Alice's bears who normally wears a wizard outfit to keep bad dreams away. I'm sure he'll be glad of the change of clothes, but he does look a bit like a bumble bee. Ah well, hopefully Alice will like it. That's two outfits for her bears now for her birthday. I'm happy with that.

So, what's left on my needles? The Ethereal top. Yeah. Not feeling the longing to take it up again, but I really should. I found these two patterns on Ravelry that gave me a couple of ideas for what I might do:
Liuhu Alpaca Tunic
Empire Waist Pullover

Sorry about the Rav links, but I don't know where else to link to them!
Hopefully I'll get it done soon, it'd be nice to have it to wear while it's still Spring like weather.

Oh, and I also found this pattern:
A nice Kindle Cover Ravlink Non RavLink for hubbys Kindle I got him for his birthday.
I have a skein of Araucania Nature Cotton I bought forever ago in a sale that should fit the bill. Maybe I'll do that first before the Ethereal top.....

Good knitting

Thursday 17 March 2011

Happy St. Patricks Day

Today, there will be none of this:

Or this:

Or this:

That is what people other than Irish people do. Here, there will be lots of this:

Dad's second sock. I aim to finish this today. Do you think I can do it? Let's find out...

Oh, and I ordered the vomiting chicken. Can't wait to get it.

Good knitting!