Friday, December 29, 2006

2006 in Knitting

I came across this meme and rather liked it as a review of the year so here is my 2006 in knitting

What is your absolute favorite project you've ever knit (one that fulfilled both process and product)?
This is a really tough call to be honest - I love the socks I have knit but the answer from this year's knitting is my Smoulder cardigan which I'm wearing as I type - it fits nicely, is soft and warm and the colours are fantastic - result!

An honourable mention should go to the little handbag which I made from yarn we bought on our honeymoon - it has special associations because of that!

Which of your handknits do you wear the most often?
Socks definitely - when I'm not working I am almost always wearing hand knit socks and I have so many beautiful pairs from this year both the ones I made for me and the ones for other people.

This year I knit:

6 pairs for me

4 pairs for H

2 pairs for my Mum

1 pair each for Daddy, Sister, BIL-to-be and Manda (my Summer of socks sock swap pal)

1 1/2 pairs of Socks of DOOM!

17 and a bit pairs of socks - I guess I like them! (Plus commuting has a lot to answer for!)

What was your favorite gift to knit?
The answer is somewhat obvious given the above - socks!!

Which of your handknits are gathering dust your closet?
Happily none of them are seriously gatehring dust - some I wear less often such as my Electra tank or a pink vest top but that's mainly due to weather conditions and/or having the right other clothes to wear with it
Which of your handknits have you gotten rid of?
well I've given away pairs of socks but nothing has been binned/charity shopped
If you've knit socks, what is your favorite pattern?
Sock Bug's River Rapids - Jodie made them for me for my Summer of Socks and I made them for Mum for Christmas. I love the pattern so much I incorporated it into my mitten pattern as well!
What would you like to make in 2007?
Well there's the million-dollar question. More things than I can possibly have time or money for although i doubt that will stop me as I am notoriously over-abitious about what I can accomplish in a given space of time - I think it's a knitter thing as I'm sure I'm not the only one - perhaps the whole left brain/right brain thing means that beacuse it doesn't feel like time is passing then it isn't - hmm not sure about that one
Anyway, cables are looking pretty big for me this year with projects from Inspired Cable Knits and Knitting Nature lining up in the wings (that and all the other things I have stash for!!)
Plus more socks
What have you learned about your craft in 2006?
This year I have really discovered the online knitting community and the sheer amount of resource out there is amazing - long live knitters and the internet!
What events/sites have you particularly enjoyed in the blogosphere in 2006?
I was part of Project Spectrum and the Summer of Socks, both of which I really enjoyed and in general discovering different people's blogs and podcasts has been great fun
I hope you all had a wonderful 2006 - see you next year

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Carie's Christmas Socks

Well everyone else got some....

Mine are Regia Silk/Wool mix in just the very simple sock pattern on 60 stitches to show off the stripes. I started them late on Christmas day for some TV knitting while we were watching a film and also to show off a little present from Father Christmas - stitch holders which scoop up all the ends of your DPNs while in transit so you don't loose stitches off the needles when your station arrives before you're really ready for it and you have to throw your knitting in a bag in a hurry (not that that ever happens to me of course!!)

In other finished items, remember my KMKS pal's bag? I lined it this afternoon and here it is in all it's glory and TWO inside pockets for stitch markers and other things that get a little lost. I'm really pleased with the way it turned out and the embroidery edging stitching looks really pretty (much nicer than the slightly blurry zigzag you can see in the picture!)

I've also had the time to write up the pattern for the mittens this week so I just need a couple of odds and ends and then I'm ready to put the packet in the post - I was a little concerned that there could be no chocolate because of USA customs laws but a quick check assures me that all is well - Mitten pal your calorie consumption is safe with me!!

A couple of other things have sparked my attention recently which I just have to share; first is the fantastic news that the Yarn Harlot's "Double the MSF donation" challenge only took 73 hours 36 minutes - that's pretty cool

The second is this - the perfect combination of law and knitting - what more could you ask for.

Father Christmas was very good to me this year and my lovely H bought me a number of knitting books all of which have loads of patterns I want to knit - most especially Norah Gaughan's Knitting Nature and Fiona Ellis' Inspired Cable Knits - which leaves me with the question, is it really wrong to start another sweater if I haven't finished Aimee - no I'm sure it can't be - maybe I can justify it on the basis that Aimee is a summer sweater and the proposed project (the Ogee tunic is more of a spring kind of thing) - girl logic will proove anything

Happy Knitting to all and to all a good night!

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

A Christmas Knitting Story

Once upon a time long long (well not that long) ago there was a knitter:

She had a Daddy and a Mummy:

And a Sister:

One day the Knitter met a handsome man who swept her off her feet. They got married and she wrapped him in yarn to keep him warm (or at least his feet as he continued to resist the idea of a handknit sweater even when all his ordinary sweaters had holes in the elbows)

Then Sister met a man who was quite handsome though obviously for the purposes of the story, not quite as feet-sweeping as the Husband. Sister fell in love with this man and they got engaged:
(that's an engagedment ring in the middle by the way)
And they all lived happily ever after with toasty warm feet.

The Knitter, having just knit 6 pairs of socks on the trot without a single pair for herself (H got two pairs for Christmas), settled down with a lovely pink, cream, green and blue silk/wool mix to enjoy her Christmas!!

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Merry Christmas Everyone

Well the title says it all - I wish everyone the very best of Christmases and I hope you all have a wonderful day tomorrow.

So what have we been up to? Well H and I are spending our first Christmas together in our new house following the matrimonials back in April - it is really lovely to be preparing for the festive season with him even if it does involve a little bit more work than previous years where all I had to do was turn up on the right day!

Yesterday we did a very early morning shop at Sainsburys followed by a trip to Talton Mill to retrieve our chicken (it's trying to be a turkey honest) and even a quick whiz round town, all accomplished by 11am - seriously for us that's impressive.

The afternoon was spent creating these:

Christmas Gingerbread tree decorations not all of which have made it to our tree!

I also finished the mittens which are shortly to be wrapped and placed beneath our tree:

Today was the church nativity service followed for me at least by more cooking. I give you H's christmas cake (a very moorish Chocolate Buche log), apple cinamon buns for tomorrow's breakfast and an ordinary loaf of bread

This afternoon we have cooked, H has painted and I have made a snowflake! It is actually a kit from the Spellbound Bead Shop which I ordered online. I am very impressed with their service, I ordered the snowflake kit and a present for a friend on Sunday night and it arrived Wednesday - how cool is that. The shop is only in Lichfield so I might have to go on an expetition there someday.

Have a wonderful day tomorrow and may all your Christmas dreams come true

Friday, December 22, 2006

The Christmas Knitting is finished!

Hurray! At least when I say finished I mean that everything I meant to complete for Christmas is complete but it is entirely possible that a little something extra has snuck onto the needles - more on that later.

Well... it seems ages since I last updated the blog and I seem to have tried to put in an update several times and completely failed. My excuse can only be a severe lack of time at home and a lot of time at work or on work trips.

However, as of 3pm this afternoon the office closed for Christmas and I am on holiday until 8 Jan (apart from a small trip into the office for a hearing on 4th Jan) Yipeeeeeeee - it's Christmas!!!

So what of the knitting; Aimee is still very much on the needles and we are still at the back stage. I love this sweater and I think the fabric is turning out very pretty but I've had the bug for simple brain-free knitting recently to make sure I unwind. My bag for the mitten kit is now finished (although still unlined) and now has some contents so all I need before January is the pattern - which leads me on to my latest project....

(the front)

(the back)

I have not knit any mittens before although there may be a very bad pair of gloves somewhere in my very distant past but when I frogged the disaster sock back in April/May time I was left with two balls of red Debbie Bliss merino Aran and two balls of a blue/purple. Cue Knitty's Fetchings in the lovely red.

I started these in the car on the way to visit my parents in Devon (from Warwickshire that's a good 3.5/4 hour drive), knit a bit more at my parents house and finished the pair on Sunday night back home - instant weekend knitting and I love them - they are hugely useful for knitting on the train and keeping my wrists warm when I need to use my fingers. All this fun led me to thinking about mittens and mitten patterns as I clearly need a pattern to send with the mitten kit and nothing I have seen on the internet really seems to suit my swap - so I designed my own.

This is what they looked like the first time I took a picture to post,

and this is what they look like now although they will grow a fair bit further before I'm finished tonight!

These precise mittens are to be an extra Christmas present to someone who is not so far getting anything knitted and who I know appreciates hand knits. It is not somone who reads the blog as far as I am aware so I think I'm pretty safe posting pictures! I will now write up the pattern and make a pretty pattern sheet for my swap so these mittens will be unnamed for a little while!

Final batch of Christmas shopping tomorrow so I must head off to prepare for it.

In the spirit of Christmas please check out the Yarn Harlot's Christmas Challenge to raise money for MCF through TCF - we're very nearly at the target total!

Happy knitting one and all!

Sunday, December 10, 2006

A weekend in Christmas land

Just in case anyone was in any doubt about it: I LOVE CHRISTMAS!

So celebrations for the season of much joy and celebration start early chez moi. Last weekend we put up the outdoor icicle lights and this weekend we have really been busy.

Up early on Saturday we ensured that Sainsbury's was suitably denuded of alcoholic beverages. Inf act because I buy as much of our food as possible from local farmers it did rather look like we were about to live off dried fruit and booze for the festive season - now there's a plan.

The lovely husband then departed for hockey while I made some last minute purchases before beginning the Mince Pie marathon. I had resolved not to make mincemeat or mince pies this year becuase only I ever eat them and so we don't really need them but then a plea for mince pies went out in church last Sunday and I could scarcely resist. I am kicking myself now for forgetting to take any pictures of the 50+ mince pies I made becuase they were very pretty with stars, trees or angels for lids and home made mincemeat inside - so yummy.

When the lovely H returned we went tree shopping (in the dark) and by hook or crook we have a winner:

That's H in the corner of the photo trying to sneak in the shot!

We also had Mary, Joseph and the Donkey come to visit as part of the village Passada. They arrived Saturday and we handed over this morning in church. It is really lovely having them travel round the village and it felt rather special to have them to stay. The Wise Men travel after Christmas so we might have them visit as well.

Today we ventured forth to Christmas shop. H was very frustrated about the idea of Christmas shopping until I reminded him that actually most of it was already done and this was only his first trip out! We are now pretty much done and what we haven't bought we have at least decided. Then we decorated our tree and it is beautiful:

I'm not quite sure whether you can see the second set of lights - they are snowmen!

Finally carolling this evening (and the consumption of many mince pies!) - real life returns tomorow but it's still only two weeks until Christmas.

In other news I have been doing a little bit of knitting (not much) and the bag for my KMKS partner is coming along well - we got the fabric to line it this afternoon so I'm almost there on that part and I've decided on the fillings!

Hope everyone's Christmas Knitting is going well!

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Christmas preparations

Are all in full swing in the Knitted Bear's household. The Christmas knitting is progressing nicely and I am now at the stage where I have a knitted item for everyone on my knitted items list. Whether I finish the current oh so secret project only time will tell but if I can sneak it into my bag for London on Thursday I may have some success in making progress on the trip back.

Having got to that happy state (and I can hear other knitters knashing their teeth) I had some time that I thought I might dedicate to something for myself, or even possibly my Aimee sweater which has been sadly neglected of late. Instead my left brain took over and I started this:

A topic I have been rather quiet on of late is the Knit Mitt Kit Swap and this is the start of the bag. The pattern will be Knitty's Sweet Suede with my own intarsia design on the front. The whole design is supposed to be sort of sweeping ripples of colour, rather like the lines I doodle and the colours are ones my swap likes so I hope she likes it.

I have also decided on a pattern for the kit - it needs a little adapting and making pretty but it should be good from then on in! I'm really enjoying making the bag so I imagine it will be finished soon.

Our Christmas preparations continue with the arrival of two angels:

They are little beading kits from Beady Bizz which I found at the NEC show. From looking on the web Beady Bizz is based in NZ but she must have a UK stockist I just can't find who which is a shame as these are very cute, easy to make and I had a great evening making one of them. I think the one on the left is mine and the one on the right is the husband's but we can't quite remember!

All is now ready to welcome Mary and Joseph and the donkey on Saturday

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Progress Unreportable

My updates here appear to be few and far between at the moment. I am making progress on various projects, none of which can be shared here just yet and my NaNoSweMo may turn into a NaNoSweBack if I'm lucky - more progress required but I'm almost at the arm holes.

That sweater is also my Red Sweater KAL and I was lucky enough to win one of Anne's red letter day prizes - in my case a copy of any one of her patterns and I chose her Casino shawl - perhaps to make in red!

But...... two little figures have appeared on the scene

Innocent Drinks are running a charity fundraiser over the christmas period and they are selling their bottled drinks in Sainsbury's and EAT with little bobble hats on and if you buy a drink with a hat on they give 50p to Shelter. On Friday one of my colleagues came back from lunch with two of these knitted hat drinks and we had great fun putting them on the hat stand at work and then putting them on our dictaphones (it makes the dictaphone have a face). We also looked at all the pictures on Innocent's website where they also have the pattern and people have made Halloween characters, Father Christmases and Angels but no penguins. L and I have a bit of a think about penguins and so she issued a challenge - could I make a penguin bottle hat.

Never one to take a challenge lightly I spent the train journey home plotting how a penguin could work with a head instead of a bobble and even making a prototype penguin head out of some pale green yarn in my knitting bag. Finally two days later we have a penguin each ( Ping and Ooh!) - I just have to see what L thinks tomorrow morning and in the meantime they are happily residing in the fridge!

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Something to report

Someone commented recently that this is the time of year when the blogs go rather quiet - at least on the knitting front. People report other activities and occasional updates on knitting projects that perhaps are not moving as fast as they otherwise would do.

This is a result of having people you know and love reading your blogs - people who may perhaps be the happy recepients of some knitting items currently under construction - thus necessitating secrecy as to the current WIP.

Suffice to say that this (and a very busy spell at work) is the reason for my recent silence. The Christmas knitting is now going well AND I now have this to show:

After a somewhat hazy start and a restart on the lace panel I seem to have found the groove for this sweater and it is coming along nicely. Not quite as fast as the Greek sweater but with good progress nonetheless. It is supposed to be my NaNoSweMo sweater but as this is the back and this is all I have done I think I may be a little optimistic! We'll just have to see.

Now that I've absorbed the pattern it is an easier knit on the brain and so more tempting as end of the day relaxing knitting!

Meanwhile being me I am of course eyeing up the next project! I've written a lace pattern fro a scarf which I could do and I have the yarn for another sweater from the Vintage Style book so either of those are possible. I'm also eyeing up some of the designs from Knitting Nature which I think are really lovely so anything's possible - particularly now Rowan have brought out Wool DK which comes in loads of really nice colours!

Happy knitting one and all

Saturday, November 11, 2006

RIP Assasin Carie

Yes, the end has come

In the shape of the GORGEOUS Knitpicks Elegance Wild Rose (it's baby alpaca and silk!). I have no idea how well it will stand up to sock wear but it's o cozy I don't care so thank you everyone that knitted on them and although I don't have an exact record they've been doing the rounds a bit and finally killed me from Leicestershire. Is it ironic that I've been involved in an international game of assasins only to be assasinated by someone who lives within an hour of me and could probably have hand delivered the socks should she have felt inclined?!


In other news I have no new pictures of my new sweater because it still hasn't been blocked and because I'm still wearing it most evenings (and at the moment). Perhaps the only down side to the sweater is that it is really very warm so I cease to require heating etc which as lovely husband has so far declined a sweater he actually requires at present - hee hee! Actually I think the poor man may be a touch cold as he keeps asking when he gets another pair of socks!

The NaNoSweMo sweater is progressing slowly but as it currently has an extra needles stuck in the point that I need to frog back to I think it can stay photo-less for a little bit! Perhaps later. There are still other things on the needles as always but they are staying secret for the moment so I can tell you all about last week's workshop instead.

It was a Rowan workshop but organised through Web of Wool in Leamington and it was great fun. We started by trying a few sample swatches to get the hang of two handed knitting and stranding comme ca:

And then feeling a little braver we started on a little fairisle and intarsia bag which I promise will eventually look a little bigger than this!

I learnt some really useful techniques (including a way of weaving in ends I wish I'd known when I did Smoulder) and the people were great fun to spend a day with - all in all a fantastic day!

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

KMKS Questionnaire

Are you allergic to any fibers?
Not that I know of - I don't like a high acrylic content but nothing actually brings me out in a rash

What are your favorite colors?
Ooo - surprisingly tough question I'm a bit of a fan of all sorts of colours. I don't like baby pink or canary yellow but I love blues and greens and all sorts of red from maroony pink through to brunt orange. Not so wild about the purples though.

Are you a new mitt knitter? How long have you been knitting mittens?
I'm completely new to mittens although I believe there may be a pair of gloves in my past (vague recollections of something blue with snowflakes on) but I have knit lots of socks so I'm used to the whole knitting in the round in relatively small dimensions.

Do you prefer solid or multicolored yarn?
No preference

What fibers do you prefer in mitten yarn?
Really anything that it soft and cosy and doesn't have a hugely high acrylic content - I'm not a regular mitten knitter so whatever is known to work well sounds good!

Where do you usually knit mittens? How do you usually carry/store small projects?
I knit my socks on the train and they travel in a little plastic zip bag inside my work bag

What are your favorite mitten patterns?What are your favorite mitten knitting techniques?What new techniques would you like to try?What are your favorite needles for knitting mittens?
Can't really answer this because of the whole no mitten thing - for socks I am a DPN girl on bamboo needles

What are some of your favorite yarns?What yarn do you totally covet?
I covet the pretty yarn I can't get in the UK but for what I can get then I like Regia sock yarn, Rowan Kid classic also rates highly at the moment - my new favourite finished sweater!

Any pattern you would love to make if money and time were no object?
A sweater of my own imagination which involves plain fairisle on a Colinette varigated background or just all the projects I already have picked out in my books!

Favorite kind of needles (brand, materials, straights or circs, etc)?
Bamboo and I usually have Clover but no real preference

If you were a specific kind of yarn, which brand and kind of yarn would you be?
Opal undyed sock yarn - practical but also unique

Do you have a favorite candy or mail-able snack?
I like surprises
What’s your favorite animal?
Would you prefer super warm mittens or something more like fingerless mitts?
Probably warm although fingerless could be good for knitting on the train - surprise me!

If you were a color what color would you be?
The colour of the sky at sunset ( changes every day!)

What is your most inspiring image, flower, or object in nature?
The sea
Do you have a wishlist? No Anything else you’d like to share with the group today? I think that's got it covered!

Monday, November 06, 2006

A minute of your time

For a quick little update on knitting in progress in the home of the bear.


1, Carie survives to last 111 sock warriors
2, Greek IK sweater meets finish post - and kitten!
3, Mitts and another challenge
4, Look 2 hands!

Hmm, (1) well I am in the last 111 sock warriors - not really quite sure how I achieved that as I have knit very few socks in this war perhaps I am just benefitting from unintentional strategic planning and the UK/US postal service. The socks of doom should arrive with Purla Hari hopefully later this week and then we will all try to figure out who should be sending socks to me.

I really liked the concept of this war but I think it has outgrown its concept and the length of time things take to travel the globe has made this more akin to the 100 years war rather than a short skirmish. There are various solutions being suggested for a next time but I might choose my battles. With fewer numbers or a set of initialy stages that stayed within the same country/continent I might have done more knitting at the very least!

(2) Spot the difference:

Girl with cat wearing Ik greek sweater - Girl with kitten wearing IK greek sweater.

Apart from the sideways thing mine does not have ruffles and I have no plans to add the ruffles. The pattern is from last autumn's IK and the only amendments were to choose glacier for the colour insteat of lavender ice and to add 1 inch to the body and 1 1/2 inches to each sleeve - it's just the right length now.

I would show you a picture of the finished article blocked (because it needs it) and I did plan to do some blocking tonight but alas I finished it yesterday afternoon, I put it on and I've worn it ever since apart from a brief sojourn in my PJs and to work. This sweater has a gorgeous neckline, it made out of lovely soft cushy fibre and was one of the quickest knit sweaters I have - success all round. For anyone wondering I used 5 1/3 of the 6 balls called for and could probably have just used 5 if I hadn't added the extra length.

Also my thanks to my somewhat unwilling model Poppy (seen here in a preferred circumstance):
She's very cute and still in the slightly springy surprised stage of kittenhood!

All this leads me on to news item (3) my new challenges:

Inspired by the speed of the IK Greek sweater the knitter has been lulled into a false sense of security and when she saw this linked from a number of posts NaNoSweMo

What is it I hear you cry?

It's knit a sweater in November and my sweater of choice is Aimee from Vintage Style - I've cast on and knit 10 rows of the back and I'm kind of ignoring the fact that this sweater knits on 3 3/4 and 4.5 needles and therefore might take longer than the IK greek but hey a challenge is a challenge. Unfortunately this particular challenge has been somewhat thwarted by a currently lack of 3 3/4 needles and Anna wasn't open on Sunday morning when we did a fly by to try to pick some up - fortunately tomorrow night should solve that problem.

There is also a little bit of two birds one warm fleecy KSH sweater - it's that favourite colour of mine and so I am also now applied to join the Red Sweater KAL for the celebration of colour and general red things all round! Yippee

Also in my joining spree .....

KMKS - another confusing one. A little while ago there was a KSKS (Knit Sock Kit Swap) which I thought was a lovely idea - you make a little project bag, put a sock knitting kit of your own compilation into the bag and send it off to your secret pal). Well this time it's mittens - I've never knit mittens but my hands are cold enough recent mornings to make me think it might be a good idea so yay a swap for me!

(4) I wanted to tell you all about Saturday's workshop but I think I might save that for another day so for now here are our bonfire night fireworks!!

Thursday, November 02, 2006

The Greek Trip

How is it that this:

Can so quickly turn into this?

Yes, the knitting element of the IK Greek sweater is finit and the whole thing is almost approaching FO status - and a lot of wear because it's gorgously warm (I tell you this from the experience of being a little cool on Tuesday night and wearing the pinned together front and back over my blouse for the evening!). All that remains is a few feet of I-cord and and encounter with (do-de-do-de do-de-do-de [NB that is a written representation of the Jaws theme, please recreate your own version]:

The crochet hook of doom!! (although note how it co-ordinates nicely with the knitting - you'd never believe it belonged to a lass currently wearing Electra over a deep lilac sweater! My electra that is - which is orange)

The pattern requires a link of single crochet around the neckline to prevent it doing the cunning slouchy stretchy think it's trying out at the moment which is all well and good but my only experience of crochet is a little practice swatch I made in Florida and then frogged because I wanted the yarn for something else.

Still if I can cope with a day of my whole IT system running on 1/3 normal speed (sense the simmering frustration - half a sleeve of knitting and it still rankles) I can master crochet. I have a hook, I have a book the only problem is lack of guidance about crocheting a single chain onto an existing garment rather than just letting it run free as a sort of cast on edge. I think if I think of it as a combination pick up and knit and cast off at the same time sort of thing I might be OK but if anyone has any ideas let me know - we'll see how it turns out. In the meantime I'm off to make some I-cord.

In other news I am one of the last 118 sock warriors. Out of 772 that's not bad going and very surprising - I'm never usually that good at things!

Sunday, October 29, 2006

More progress

The problem with knitting with really lovely soft comforting yarn is that it distracts you from doing anything else remotely useful - all you want to do is curl up on the sofa with the nice yarn and your needles. And with such a simple pattern as the IK Greek sweater it's the knitting equivalent of comfort eating.

And so I now have a front and back to the Greek sweater and lost no chance of pinning the sides together to have a try on:

It looks quite good as a tank top! I'm also glad I added an extra inch to the length - it's just perfect now. So on ewith the sleeves - I've cast on the first one but we've just spent the weekend visiting family so it was socks for the travelling knitting - watch this space for news of what will be a relatively short visit to sleeve island - so great knitting on 5mm needles!

Hope everyone else had a great weekend!

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Round Two! all done!

well ta da! Round two of the Socks of Doom are complete:

The yarn is Rowan Wool Cotton which I've never knit with before and is very soft and snuggly - I hope it makes good socks and doesn't wear out too soon.

Now all I need is the address for assassin Purla Hari - the weapon is armed and waiting for the post!

I'm trying to work out how many people must have worked on these socks - I know they aren't my target's first target socks and P is a good way down the alphabet from both of our e-mail addresses so it could be quite a few.

I should add that there has been a small contribution to these socks from my lovely husband. Last night coming home on the train I was knitting away as usual without really noticing the boy watching me quite intently. Then gently a little hand came across and took the yarn out of my hand and wrapped it round the needles. We kept going like this for some time, me moving the needles and the boy moving the yarn. All went well until I finished working across the bottom of the foot (st st) and needed to Rib of Doom across the top. First three stitches were knit and all was well. Then I put the needles in to purl and was met with a blank expression! He gamely tried a number of different methods of wrapping to purl without any coaching from me but eventually the yarn was handed back. Lovely husband later reported that he had been watching for some time but he just couldn't figure out the patterned bit because I went too fast. So perhaps if I start knitting really slowly in front of him I might just draw him in - what do you think? Boy if you read this you can comment too!

The possibility that the lovely husband reads this blog on the sly is the reason why perhaps some of my current projects need to stay under wraps for the moment. However, I am making good progress on my IK Greek sweater - I love the way the yarn knits up so softly and it is beautifully warm even when just spread over my knees. The only problem I have is that the Kid Classic can be a little splitty at times but perhaps that's just me. That and jumping from sock needles to 5mm and back requires a bit of getting used to!

Anyway happy knitting one and all

Monday, October 23, 2006

I'm back!!

And sad to say I've been no-where - I just can't believe how long it's been since I last posted. My only defence is a very busy week followed by a busy weekend. Anyway time for a little update...

What's off my needles?

Ta da!

A finally finished Smoulder (finished just before I had to change it as my computer password at work) with buttons:

I love the buttons they remind me of the little black pebbles and bits of slate you pick up at the beach to skim with and they fit the very geometric design and stop it being either twee or little stripy child.

The pattern is Rowan's Smoulder from Book 31 I think in the original colours which as half of them have been discontinued is somewhat of an achievement. Followers of this blog will know that the yarn for this cardigan came from Birmingham, The Netherlands, the US and Shipston - it's quite a combination! It is a real pleasure to knit and I loved the colour changes (the ends were a knot in the yarn though to be honest). It will be a while before I do stripes again although I still love fairisle type colour work so perhaps not!

There have also been various secret projects on and off the needles which for the moment will remain under wraps.

What's on the needles?

Well the IK Trellis scarf still gets a bit of attention occasionally although it has been neglected recently. Perhaps now it is colder I'll feel more like a KSH scarf. For the moment my Drizzle scarf is doing me proud!

The IK Greek sweater has also reappeared from the basket now that Smoulder is finished and I've cast on for the back. It's strange to knit with 5mm needles after all the small needles for Smoulder but it does make it grow a bit faster.


Socks of Doom (Round Two ding ding)

Yes they arrived in the post this morning. I'm not entirely sure who knit them apart from Karen (my target) but they are for Purla Hari who is some way down the list from us so they've been around a bit. Funny that having come all the way from the States they're in Rowan wool cotton!! Coals to Newcastle perhaps.

Anyway I took them on the train this morning and turned the heel and did the arch shaping on the way in and they won't take long to finish now. All I need is a target address! And still I'm not dead - yippee but with cold feet!

Other Random info

Look, pretty cakes from Sunday... St Clements cake and Clotted Cream Cheesecake - now sadly diminshed!

Also Interweave knits arrived this morning and it's fabulous as always -yippee!

Now must go knit like the wind for Round 2 socks!

Sunday, October 15, 2006

A productive weekend

But first the news:

A report has reached me of the sad demise of Assasin Karen. She fell at the feet of a pair of pinky red wooly socks which FINALLY made it to the US! I am now waiting for the next pair of socks to knit to reach me before I too join the list of the warm-footed! I expect there's at least another two weeks left in me given world postal services! I feel very lucky to have lasted this long in the game especially as I haven't really done anything - I'm the sock wars equivalent of hiding in the cupboard under the stairs!

Anyway this weekend has been put to good use. First we have these:

So very Stepford but they taste gorgeous and I was feeling in a very kitch mood! The round one is a vanilla cupcake and the square (ish) is a French Fancy. Were I a french pattiserie chef I would be fired for poor presentation but happily I'm not.

Then this afternoon we had this:

And now we have this:

I don't have any buttons yet so it looks a bit strange because of being held together with pins but I love it - it is surprisingly warm and really comfy and I really enjoyed knitting it. The ends I could do without and the seams take ages because you have to be so precise to make the stripes match but with the benefit of hindsight and half a glass of wine it is all worth it.

Buttons on Tuesday and then it counts as an official finished object.

Now where did I put those cakes.....