Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Twenty five pairs and a jumper

There has been a WIP fest in a Ravelry group I hang out in.  I felt I should make an effort.

First off was the jumper of doom.  Martin's jumper is made from New Lanark bulky wool using Elizabeth Zimmermann's Percentage System pattern.  I cast it on in 2010 and it wasn't a particularly complicated project yet I kept putting it off and off.

So I dusted it off and got on with it.  And it is now done.  There are short rows in the back of the neck to make the it taller.  I did 2x2 rib on the neck, collars and bottom edge.  Originally the bottom had a simple cast on and no rib but it was curling terribly.  After some googling I found a wonderful tutorial by Eunny Jang showing how to pick up the stitches and knit down.  And it looks great!

Can you see the join?  Me either.  Once I had finished the jumper I immediately cast on a new jumper, but more about that another time.

The other big part of my WIP guilt is socks.  I love knitting socks and if I don't have one to hand I will cast on a new one... This has led to a ridiculous amount of sock WIPs.  I decided to bring them all together and was more than a little shocked to find I had 25 pairs in various states.  This clearly needs attacking.

So, first off is an audit.
Pairs 1, 2 and 3: These three are the nearest to completion

 Pair 1:

Yarn - Lana Grossa Meilenweit 100 cotton maya
Status - two completed socks
Notes - these two socks were separated so it was only when I was collating the WIPs that I discovered the two had been finished.  However, they do not match, one has a slipstitch heel and one a plain.  One is shorter than the other.
Action - sew in the ends and enjoy the new pair, who cares that they are a little mismatched.
Update - completed!

Pair 2:

Yarn - Brown/Green stripy stuff
State - two completed socks
Action - sew in the ends - now done.

Pair 3:

Yarn - Lorna's Lace - Shepherd Sock - love this yarn it's bonkers
State - one completed sock and one with a wonky toe.
Action - pick up stitches from toe, complete toe and sew in ends.  Now done.

Pair 4:

Yarn - Opal?  Regia?  Not sure.
State - one completed sock and one just started
Notes - This is the most recent pair I have been working on so these are in my bag when I am out.  Hopefully these will be completed soon.

Pair 5:

Yarn - Schoeller and Stahl Fortissima Colori Socka 
State - one almost complete sock
Notes - Big Foot!  Rib leg - for Martin

 Pair 6:

Yarn - Regia Design Line - Kaffe Fassett - I have a bit of a weakness for this yarn and have a lot in my stash. 
State - half way up the foot of sock one
Action - find ball two...

Pair 7:

Yarn - The Yarn Yard Magic Carpet (isn't it stunning?)
State - Working two at a time just passed the heel
Pattern - generic toe up vanilla pattern with a slip stitch heel
Story - I took this to York with me for a knitters get together a few years ago and I had the socks on two needles.  It became a bit of a group knit.  Still not finished them though. Maybe I should take them to the next York meet up? 

Pair 8:

Yarn - Not sure what this yarn is - perhaps a Jitterbug?  It has that high twist
State - One completed sock, but it has something weird going on at the top - need to frog back and reknit.  Suspect it has been cut with scissors?  Accidental or by a child, not sure...

Pair 9:

Yarn - Regia Design Line - Kaffe Fassett (yes another one)
State - working two at a time, just turned the heels
Nice easy knit, this one is next to the sofa for TV knitting.  Should be done soon.

Pair 10:

Yarn - Regia knitted strip
State - Half way up foot one.
Note - I have no idea what patten this is.  It is just worked on one side of the foot - perhaps a twisted rib.  Any ideas?

Pair 11:

Yarn - Schoppel-wolle Zauberball - oh how I love this yarn.  Not the easiest to knit with, it can be a bit splitty but it is stunning to look at.
State - one completed sock.  I think this is a toe-up sock, will need to examine to be sure.  Simple roll top at the top, no ribbing.

Pair 12:

Yarn - The Yarn Yard Clan
State - One completed sock.  This has been on hold for ages.  I completed the first one but used more than half of my black yarn.  I bought more from The Yarn Yard and it doesn't match.  Not sure whether to have slightly mismatched socks or not.  The replacement yarn is a very dark green.  (See second photo)

Pair 13:

Yarn - Lorna's Lace - Shepherd Sock - love this yarn it's bonkersState - Generic toe up sock with 2x2 ribbing once the toe was complete. Super stretchy!Not sure of the yarn - Opal? Regia?

Pair 14:

Yarn - Colinette Jitterbug.  I adore this yarn, has a great twist which gives fantastic stitch definition.
State - half way up first foot.  Using purl stitches randomly to emphasise spots of colour.

Pair 15:

Yarn - Schoppel-wolle Zauberball - love it...
State - One completed sock.  Plain foot, ribbed leg.

Pair 16:

Yarn - Regia or Opal?
State - One completed sock
Action - need to find the second ball of yarn..

Pair 17:

Yarn - Crazy Zauberball
State - Need to find the yarn for this.  Simple vanilla sock.

Pair 18:

Yarn - Lorna's Lace - Shepherd Sock - love this yarn it's bonkers
State - one completed sock and one with a wonky toe.
Action - pick up stitches from toe, complete toe and sew in ends.  Now done.

Pair 19:

Yarn - Regia - Kaffe Fasset
Pattern Leyburns - a fantastic pattern and deceptively simple.
State - One complete sock
Action - find yarn and knit another!

Pair 20:

Yarn - Cascade Yarn - Sassy Stripes - super cute yarn
State - One completed sock - I notice this one was knitted in 2010 - whoops!
Action - Just bloody knit the other!

Pair 21:

Yarn - Yarn Yard yarn - can't remember which one. 
State - One half sock.Action - This has been frogged a few times and may be ripped back again to the top of the heel and then maybe a cable or a lace pattern.

Pair 22

Yarn - Colinette Jitterbug
State - One complete and one half foot.
Note - These were cast on in October 2008 - oh my!

Pair 23:

Yarn - Lorna's Lace - Shepherd Sock - love this yarn it's bonkers
State - One complete, one top.  These are huge - I suspect the yarn is nearer DK than 4ply.  These may end up in the frog pool...

Pair 24:

Yarn - Yarn Yard caber 
State - One half foot
Pattern - Gansey sock by Wendy Johnson

Pair 25:

Saving the best 'til last.
Yarn - Regia World College Colour - affectionally known as bargain balls.
State - One completed sock and one toe.
This is a knee high sock and in 2D looks hilarious!  Need to copy the increases to match the second sock.  Interestingly I am using the second ball in reverse so the stripe order will reverse.

So there you have it.  Shameful isn't it?  They are now all logged and in one basket all together.  My intention is to work my way through them and no new socks may be cast on.

Want to know something else?  I think there may be more sock WIPs somewhere... and let's not think about non-sock WIPs....

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Awesome Friends

I have awesome friends.  I would love it if they lived closer so we could go out and drink wine and chat, but hey ho, we don't have everything.  I have not been having the best time recently, struggling with loneliness, stress, frustration and general low-mood.  So - some of my friends have done some amazingly touching things to cheer me up.

First, my lovely friend Yvette was making batts the other week and I admired them.  Next thing I know she is asking for my address.  A week or so later an amazing parcel arrived containing four mini batts in perfect colours, two crunchie bars (sadly now gone ;-) ) and a gorgeous cool yarn bowl made by her.  (Check out her Etsy store - she is fab!)

Then yesterday a mysterious parcel appeared in my mailbox.  Inside was a card from my fabulous friend, Helen, who I dearly miss.  We used to go to knit night every week at The Yarn Cake and I miss that so much.  She had put together a parcel with Natalie (from The Yarn Yard) and Katie (from Hilltop Cloud). 

Inside was an array of gifts, I am so lucky!  Some Ashcroft spinning wheel accessories to keep my lovely wheel in shape.  Some gorgeous silk/wool yarn in a lovely deep orange from Natalie as well as one of her project bags - love them both.  

Katie sent a large tote bag and some of her stunning fibre - love the pencil roving!  

Helen also added in some of Katie's camel/wool fibre (never spun camel before - it's so soft.)  

Finally there is a huge bar of chocolate and some rocky road hot chocolate spoons.

I feel the urge to strip my wheel and spin all the things - and what to make with that yarn - something for me obviously!!  Thank you all.  Love you, and miss you all.  (Come and stay sometime and I can show you around the Stockholm yarn shops ;-) )

I have amazing friends.  Did I say that already?

Jelly Roll Race

I have had a jelly roll knocking around for ages and finally picked it up this week. I have known about jelly roll races for a while (go google them) and found this video which explains the technique.

So I thought I would give it a go. It took a while to get the machine set up and get used to the technique. Certainly not the neatest of quilt tops. But, nevertheless, I am pleased with the results. I still have all of the finishing to do, so the edging and the padding and the top stitching.

What do you think?

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Sun Hat

"Mum, can you make me a sun hat?"

Orla needs a sun hat as it is very hot here this week, she doesn't have one (they all got binned in the move) and she is going on an all-day adventure tomorrow with no shade...

She produced a pattern from her Sewing School book which although nice was completely impractical being made of fleece and having no rim at all. Designed to be a 'keep your head warm' hat and not a 'shade your face' hat.

So using a bit of google-fu I found a very simple pattern.

Two fabrics chosen, cut out and super-quickly sewn together gave me this hat:

Not the neatest piece of work. But funtional and quick.


Monday, March 31, 2014

Hello there

Well, well, well. It has been a long time. Rather than bore you with apologies and reasons I will dive straight in and show you something. Look at these little crochet squares.

They are made from mini skeins of 4ply or scrap yarn. I made simple granny squares with the intention of making something for my daughter at some point. The colours are all a similar tone. Whenever I line them up though they are just so dull.

So then I thought I might Babette them so I started unravelling the squares and starting again, but this was soooo time consuming and I didn't get very far.

So my next thought was a bit of a fluke. I had a ball of cream wool lying around after a stash shake up. One evening I grapped it and did a round on the outside of some of the squares. And wham, bam, thank you ma'am look at the squares now. They possitively zing. So much better, the colours are lifted and don't merge into one. So glad I have not frogged them all.

My problem now is I only have one ball of the wool. And of course it is labeless. I think it is Noro Cash Iroha which has been discontinued. It looks like I need to go to my local store and see if there is a Drops alternative that is close in colour, because I am not frogging them again...