April 28, 2008
Well, it's been a busy week at Casa del Random. Emily had a dance eisteddfod for most of last week, we spent Monday night, and most of Wednesday, Thursday and Friday sitting in a cold school hall. She did pretty well, and had fun, but I think I achieved more than she did!
It's prefect knitting time, except that it was a dark hall, they turned out the lights, and that meant I had to stick to plain stocking stitch. Luckily, Emily's new sweater fits the bill perfectly. Day 1 I dropped a stitch, and had to rip back 10 rows when we got home, but apart from that, it was all good. How good?
All done, ready for blocking and seaming! I finished the knitting up on Saturday night, assisted by my new and very cute stitch marker.
How cute is that?!?
The sweater is in the bathtub right now, preparing for blocking.
Saturday was the opening day of the Wollongong Stitch n Bitch exhibition. After two weeks of rain, the weather gods smiled upon us and the sun came out. It was a gorgeous day, but unfortunately, I failed to take the camera out of my bag even once. Great weather, great company, knitting, what better way to spend a Saturday afternoon?
Yesterday we took advantage of the continuing good weather and went to the Fish Markets for lunch, then had a wander around the city. And I started something else.
Socks for David, in Opal 6ply. No pattern, just 56sts, 3 x 1 rib on 2.75mm needles. I've worked out that if I knit a pair of socks a month, and don't buy any more sock yarn (as if!), it's only going to take me four years or so to use up my sock stash.
That's not long. Maybe I should stock up!
April 24, 2008
Left to right: Veilchen, Versuchskaninchen, Lowenzahn, Miss May, Poison Nr 5. All in 100% Superwash. Direct from the source.
April 21, 2008
The hedgehog, he is done.
Em has dubbed him "Hedgie"
He is so adorably cute, it's almost nauseous.
Pattern: Huggable Hedgehogs by Debbie Radtke for Fiber Trends
Yarn: Main yarn is Ella Rae Classic, Paws are Lincraft Cosy Wool, the Floof is Sandnes Garn Funny.
Needles: 6.5mm and 8mm Knitpicks Options.
This was a relatively easy knit. It's all in garter stitch, the hardest skills required are picking up stitches and short rows.
Of course, short rows require counting, and I can't concentrate that long, so there was some tinking involved.
The Ella Rae Classic felts like a dream. One wash cycle was all he needed to get to the feltedness I wanted. He did shrink quite a bit, but I didn't think to take before and after measurements.
I picked up packets of cheap eyes and noses at Spotlight, and I now own enough eyes to make 6 more hedgehogs! If I were to make him again, I think I'd hold the floof double, as I think he's looking a little threadbare. I might also use a darker yarn on his back, as I think the light coloured yarn makes him look even more threadbare. If I'd used darker yarn on his back, it wouldn't be so obvious.
In the end though, a complete success. He is intended for David's sister, but I think there will be a struggle to extract him from Emily.
And just to push the cute level right over the edge in this post, I actually got Twinkie to snuggle with me yesterday morning. Please pardon the morning hair and pyjamas, I don't think Twink would've let me go get dressed so a picture could be taken.
Altogether now... "aawwww"
April 19, 2008
So this is what!
Updates on the last post. Keep in mind that the in progress pictures in the last post were mostly taken last weekend. I knit a lot, and I knit pretty fast, but I ain't a knitting superhero.
First up, the Anastasia socks. I did mention in the last post that I finished the first one at the Guild meeting on Monday. I *almost* finished it, anyway. All that remained was the cast off, so I finally sat down and figured out a sewn cast off.
I cast on the second one yesterday, and I've worked on it pretty exclusively since then, and I've just finished the heel. I don't usually work that hard on socks, but the mood was with me today!
The reason I've had time to work on the socks is because I stayed up very late on Wednesday night, and i finished the hedgehog! Well, the knitting part, anyway.
Here's how he looked pre-felting.
Today he took a nice hot spa in the washing machine. I didn't think to measure him before I felted him, but he shrank quite a lot.
Here's how he looks right now.
Isn't he cute? He's currently firmly stuffed with plastic bags. The weather here is cold and grey, so I don't know how long he'll take to dry. I almost want to cast on another straight away!
But I shan't because there are bunches of other things I want to cast on, which is what's helping me zoom through the current projects.
My final work in progress is Em's Deep Rib Jumper. The back is done, the sleeves begun.
Maybe I should stick to sweaters for Emily knit in nice thick yarn! Zoom, zoom, zoom!
April 16, 2008
So now what?
Well, there's plenty in the wings, as usual.
The Anastasia socks are growing nicely. Here's a pic from Sunday.
On Monday, I finally took myself along to a Knitters Guild meeting. I had no idea that the meeting would go for over four hours, but I finished the sock! Now I have one more to do before Mothers Day.
The Knitters Guild isn't for me, I'm afraid. I've joined anyway, and I'm going to do the courses by correspondence. Although a four hour straight knitting marathon with morning tea every month might not be a bad idea!
My hedgehog is also coming along nicely, and no longer looks like a squashed frog (Once Angie pointed that out, it's all I could see!)
He has fuzz now.
And the sweater I showed a glimpse of a few posts back is Em's Deep Rib Sweater.
Working with a yarn at 16sts/10cm is far more rewarding than working with a yarn at 25sts/10cm! I've almost finished the back now.
The yarn is Patons Jet. Em picked the colour, but it's a discontinued one, shade number 12. I hope I have enough! I bought 9 balls from Ozeyarn, (the last they had), then I got another 3 balls from eBay, but they were the wrong dyelot.
The Happy Spider had 2 balls of the right dyelot, so she agreed to swap with me, so fingers crossed that all will be well!
April 13, 2008
Lace and Cables Sweater... done
David took about a billion pictures, and I hate them all equally. It's a grey stormy day in Sydney, and we had to run out between rain showers. And the thunder is just moving back in again.
At any rate, the Lace and Cables Sweater is done.
Overall, I'm pretty happy with it, but I do have a few complaints. (What else is new?) The body is a little short, and the sleeves are a little long. I can live with the sleeves, but I can tell I'm going to be pulling at the bottom of the sweater a lot. If I really can't live with it, I may end up undoing the cast on edge, and making it a bit longer, but I don't have much yarn left. From the picture I should have known it would be short, but I thought the model was just wearing her pants very low.
Half of the pictures that David took were vetoed because my tummy was showing.
The other complaint I have is the sizing. Jo Sharp has a big difference in her sizes, 10cm (4") to be precise. I fell smack in the middle of two sizes, so I took the safe route and went with the larger size, but now I wish I'd gone with the smaller. It's not a big deal, but I think it would be better a little more fitted.
The yarn is really, really nice to work with, and I'm happy with the resulting fabric. However, be warned, it is a little itchy to wear against the skin. It's nice and soft to knit though!
April 11, 2008
Check. Inside all woven in and accounted for?
Check. Other side seam?
Erm, well... the sleeve is in, it's nearly done!
Sweater all finished and complete before the next one is started?
April 08, 2008
Knitty, knitty, knit
So for the past few days I've been working almost exclusively on the Lace and Cables Sweater. I was definitely getting to the stage where I was sick of looking at it, so I just wanted it done.
Yesterday morning I was up to here on the front.
Last night I stayed up pretty late, but by this morning I had this.
A nice pile of finished pieces, ready to be blocked before seaming. Hooray! And those pieces are now pinned out on my bedroom floor, drying.
I enjoyed knitting it, but I always get tired of whatever I'm knitting before I finish it.
I did start something else through the week though, because project monogamy is just totally beyond me.
Socks for my mum for Mother's Day. I'm using some yummy, yummy Koigu in P604, and the Anastasia pattern. So far, so good, and I took my mum to the doctors this morning, and she admired the sock while I was working on it. (She doesn't know it's intended for her) Let's hope that means that she actually does like them!
And finally, in Twinkie news, she's still not happy about the diet regime she's been on since coming home from Lara's.
Today, she has taken matters into her own paws.
She's stealing potatoes from the potato bin.
I did something to my back while doing canteen duty yesterday, and it's aching, so I think I'm going to bed with my knitting now.
April 06, 2008
Happy Blogiversary to me!!
The blog is four years old today, who'd have thunk it? (Certainly not David, who didn't want to build me a blog, because he didn't think I'd use it.)
To celebrate, let's have a finished project!
Hyrna Herborgar. Done, knitted, finished, blocked and photographed.
It grew admirably after a bath. I was a little worried that it looked awfully small when I'd finished it, but by now, you think I'd have more faith in the magic of blocking.
Both of those pictures are pretty, but some of the detail is lost, so here are better pictures of the shawl itself.
I love, love, love it.
It's not a hard pattern to follow, despite the sketchy translation, although it does get a little difficult once you lose that defined centre line.
As mentioned, the pattern wasn't too difficult. The chart is fairly straightforward, and while the instructions are sketchy, they're plenty to get by on.
Love the yarn! The possum adds a lovely softness and warmth to the yarn, but the guard hairs tend to drop out all over the place. The yarn is a little heavier than a traditional laceweight, but it's not quite a fingering weight, so it's a nice compromise. It'd be nice if you were just starting out with lace and didn't want to go straight to the skinny stuff.
There's 670 metres to a skein, and I only used just over half the skein, so the shawl itself doesn't use a lot of yarn.
I love the way the colours come up, too. Not enough variegation to distract from the pattern, more like a shaded solid.
Final verdict? Five stars!
April 03, 2008
And so, finally, the Monkey socks are done!
Em's happy with them.
Pattern: Cookie A's Monkey socks from Knitty Winter 2006.
Yarn: Sterling Silver and Silk by Kraemer Yarns, purchased at Stitch Cafe in Valley Village in Los Angeles, and hand dyed by them.
Needles: 2.25mm Pony Pearl DPNS
Love the pattern! Super easy to memorise, and fast to work. The socks did take me over a month to do, but I didn't work on them very much at all. Em picked the yarn while we were in the USA, and I chose the pattern for two reasons, first because it looks nice in variegated yarns, and second because David calls Emily the Wild Monkey, so it seemed appropriate.
The yarn was really, really nice to work with. It's soft, but seems sturdy, and the silver sparkle is pretty! I'm not sure how it will hold up to washing and wear, but I'll let you know. I think it might be the same yarn that's available as "Ginger" at Live 2 Knit in Australia, and if it is, I highly recommend it!
And now I have a confession to make. While I was in Hawaii, I bought some...
Fun Fur. Yes, I bought novelty yarn. And I paid an exorbitant amount of money for it, I have no idea what I was thinking. But I did buy it with a purpose.
It's going to be a Hedgehog. I couldn't resist.
Does buying Fun Fur and actually knitting with it get me kicked out of the Cool Knitters Club?
Hang on, was I ever in the Cool Knitters Club?!?