Saturday, December 31, 2005

Out With The Old...

...in with the new. Old year out, new year in. Old gloves out, new mittens in.

I need a new pair of gloves. I've had these for several years and as the picture shows they've got a little thin! I bought them and a matching scarf from Marks & Spencers and they've given good service.

After the success with Mum's Broad Street mittens, I had to have a go at making my own of course. I used a combination of the knowledge gained from the Broad Street mittens, making socks and the mitten chapter in Simple Socks, Plain and Fancy. I think I've done good!

I'll have the second mitten finished by the end of the day (and year) so I'll be sporting my new mittens on my first day back at work on Tuesday.

I've already started thinking about the next pair. I'd like to do a pattern, maybe cables, and a gussetted thumb. I used a straight thumb this time as its simpler and I really needed to have these mittens finished to replace the poor old M&S gloves.

I might even write up the pattern - its very easy!

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Crown Me

With everything I have on the needles at the moment I, of course, started something new!

This is Coronet from Knitty. I knitted it in an acrylic yarn I found in Mum's stash. Its not a yarn I'd like to wear against my skin but its okay on my hair! The yarn is an Australian one, Panda Magnum 8ply Mist colour #347, a heathery green, knitted on 4.5mm bamboo straights and 4.5mm metal dpns. The yarn is old, possibly over 20 years old. Mum moved back to the UK from Australia in 1981 and I know she didn't buy any yarn the last time she visited Oz in 2001. So I think we can call it vintage yarn!

Here is a close-up of the grafted join on the cable band - its not perfect but I am quite happy with it. I realised I was doing something slightly wrong when doing a grafted seam and now that I've cracked it the grafts are looking much better.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Crimbo Goodies

This is a very greedy me me ME post!

This first pic is of the goodies that were waiting for me on Christmas morning. Two balls of 6ply Regia sock yarn in colour #5180. 10 balls of Sirdar Salsa DK in colour #721 'Moonlight', enough to make the sweater on the cover of the January issue of Simply Knitting. A box of Thorntons chocolates and a box of Baileys truffles - yum! A watch which was a complete surprise! I lost my watch back in the summer and my wonderful Mum decided to replace it for me because I hadn't got around to it.

This is a close-up of the Sirdar Salsa. It is the most gorgeous colour. There are three colours plied together - black, blue and purple. The yarn is 50% merino and 50% acrylic, fuzzy and soft. Lovely. Of course, I have started knitting the sweater and I will have a progress shot later. It knits up really nicely and is also easy frog, surprising seeing as its fuzzy. The reason I know it is easy frog is, naturally, that I've suffered a bit from brain strain and more than once I knitted on the purl row. Duh!

This is the mega-cute ice cream scoop that my Aussie neices, Hannah and Abbey, sent me for Christmas. Thanks kidlets, I love it!!






Finally, along with all my other presents, Mum also gave me a bunch of flowers! I love flowers and don't get them very often so this is a very special gift. Thanks Mum!

Speaking of Mum, she loved her socks! They went straight from wrapping paper to feet and stayed there all day. She also liked her broadstreet mittens so a very happy day was had by all!

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Sock Part The Second

No cursing! No ripping! I did have to fudge the second sock slightly as I was a bit out in my guestimate of where to start but I don't think anyone would notice. I can't see it and I know exactly what to look for and where. (see Sock Part The First for yarn and needle details) This is the quickest pair of socks I've knitted and would have been quicker but because I knew I would finish today I was suffering from 'distract-itis'. The picture is awful because the light today is awful, its been grey and murky all day. Blurgh!

Now... what next?

**Edited to add: I also finished my International Scarf Exchange scarf today - hurrah for me! I will leave blocking it until after Crimbo as my 'drying space' (aka my bedroom floor) is full of handwashed handknitted socks at the moment!

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Sock Part The First

I was a busy little beaver yesterday. Yes Mummy there is a sock this Christmas. Well... almost. I'm at the toe-shaping of the first sock and should be able to finish the second in time for Sunday. I'm using Opal Rodeo Cotton in colour #1170 on 2.5mm dpns. I bought this colour ages ago because I liked the look of it and I like it even more now that its knitted up. I wasn't going to bother matching the stripes but... Look how well the striping went on the heel and you just know I will be spending this afternoon cursing and ripping until I get the second sock to do the same!

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Broadstreet

Mum's broadstreet mittens/fingerless gloves are finished. She's tried them on and they fit a treat. Now she just has to wait for the large, jolly bloke in the red suit to visit before she can have them!

I've decided to frog the socks I started for her because the yarn (from her stash) is really harsh and was hurting my fingers while I was knitting with it. I think it will be too harsh for feet so it had to go. I am going to try washing it to see if it softens up at all so she may yet get her socks! I've been a bit sneaky because I told her that she won't be getting socks for Christmas but I remembered last night that I have a ball of Opal Rodeo Cotton so I've started her a pair in that. I noticed this morning that she is wearing the other pair I made her and I said 'nice socks, shame you aren't getting a pair for Christmas' and she hit me! She'll take it all back on Sunday when she opens her presents.

I guess that means I'd better get knitting then!

Monday, December 19, 2005

Meg's Scarf

The tops I dyed for Meg's scarf are dry. The red and blue is still quite distinct but I know that the colours will be much more blended when its spun. I'm quite looking forward to spinning this. The good thing is that its summer in Australia so I have plenty of time to spin and knit it!

The green Wensleydale is also dry and looking lovely! If I do say so myself! I couldn't get a decent picture of the colours even though I froze my butt off outside on Sunday morning trying!

My lovely little camera has had a bit of an accident too. It had a disagreement with a ceramic salt shaker and came off second best. The screen on the back is quite spectacularly cracked but fortunately the camera still works with no problems. This, of course, all happened at my work christmas party so next year my poor little Canon camera is staying home where it is safe!

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Seasonal Silliness

Christmas Elf Name

My Christmas Elf Name is
Get your Christmas Elf Name at JokesUnlimited.com

Looking at where the hyphen is, I think this is meant to mean that I have ghost fingers that are happy! :-) I prefer to think that my fingers are full of happy spirits because they know they have a two week holiday from work and can spend all their time knitting, spinning and dyeing!

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Nothing To See Here, Move Along

Sadly no pics today. I have a few things on the needles that show some progress but the light is appalling today, very foggy outside. Besides, I'm sick AGAIN! I'm sick of being sick! At least this year its a couple of weeks before Christmas, last year I got ill on Christmas day - urk!

Mum's broadstreet mittens are finally happening in a size that will fit her rather than Hagrid. I'm knitting them in navy blue Sirdar Country Style 4ply (yes left over from the mosaic socks!) on 2.5mm dpns. They fit me so far and Mum and I have the same size hands so, fingers crossed, its looking like I've finally cracked it. I can only knit them during the day though because I just can't see the stitches well enough under artificial light. Ruh roh! Think old age is catching up with me!

My other startling news is that my scarf for my International Scarf Exchange pal is 30 inches long! When did that happen? I think I must have some knitting brownies in my house because I can't remember knitting it that much! I'm probably just less than halfway through the second ball so well on target for the 55 inches the pattern calls for. I have four balls so I can easily make it longer. I'm not going to say which pattern or colour I'm using just in case my pal figures out who I am! No clues here!

I dyed some more roving yesterday. Some rainbow purple for my mate Meg in Australia who wants a Wavy scarf knitted in 'the same colour as the one you did your Mum'. I also dyed some more Wensleydale in green. This time it came out far more variegated so I'm going to ply a single from the first batch with a single from the second which should look quite good. I hope...

Meg has just started up a blog of her own so pop over and say hi! Her kitty cat, Benni, is lovely and fluffy and grey!

Anyway, enough rambling. If the light improves I'll try to get some pics posted.