Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Phellogen Finished

Phellogen - Tour de Sock stage 2

Phellogen by Glenna C. in Regia 4ply.

Phellogen - Tour de Sock stage 2

All those twisted travelling stitches were made much easier because I was using the ChiaoGoo Red Lace needles that came heavily recommended on the Tour de Sock Ravelry group for magic loop. They are a dream.

Phellogen - Tour de Sock stage 2

Saturday, 15 October 2011

Tour De Sock

I am currently taking part in the Tour De Sock race over on Ravelry. It seemed like the perfect opportunity to try some different sock yarns and some challenging techniques. I've already added magic loop and toe-up to my repertoire thanks to TDS - and the patterns are fab!

I present Calable:

Tour De Sock stage 1 - Calable

Tour De Sock stage 1 - Calable

Tour De Sock stage 2 - Phellogen

2nd sock still to come!

Saturday, 2 April 2011

How Much Stocking Stitch....

... can you see in this picture?

So Much Stocking Stitch

When your head is stuffed full of so many things that there is no room left for yarnovers . . .

Basic Pullover Back and Front

. . . and a little bit of ribbing, a little bit of shaping, is all the headspace you can muster . . .

More Regia Socks WIP

. . . it's good to know that your old friend stocking stitch is always there waiting for days like these.

Simple Stripy Socks

And when you end up with scrummy socks to keep your toes warm on cold spring mornings, who could ever call it boring?

Congratulations everybody on a wonderful Knitting and Crochet Blog Week. My feedreader is about to spill over with all the lovely new blogs I have found.

Sunday, 20 February 2011

I got quite a haul this week from a sale at a nearby fabric shop. All of this, including the two Moda charm packs, for under £25.

Sale Fabric

The black and green fabric are Michael Miller FQs and there are a few other random fat quarters and offcuts.

This should keep me busy for a while!

The Wee Woodland charm pack has already sprung into life:

Birds Cushion Close Up

I've been wanting to try this sort of applique for a while. I already had the sewing machine foot from doing some free-motion quilting, but this seemed altogether more intimidating! In fact, it was quite fun once I got back into the swing of how to move the fabric through the machine. To do this sort of free-motion embroidery, you need a darning foot for your machine (this was £13 for my Janome) and to lower the feed dogs so you can feed the fabric through in any direction.

This particular project is a cushion slightly modified from a quilted wall-hanging in the book 'Little Birds'.

My control is still a little all over the place, but I don't think it matters too much. Luckily, my herky-jerky movements fit quite well with the style!

The light background is plain old muslin. I used to turn my nose up at using this, but I've actually grown quite fond of the rough texture and I see myself using a lot more of it.

Birds Cushion

Tuesday, 8 February 2011

The Persistence Jumper. . .

. . . is done!

I have been working on the Huggable Hoodie since September and it is finally done. I've made a good few notes about this on my Ravelry page. Honeycomb cable is very slow, even when cabling without a needle, so this was a good exercise in stick-to-it-iveness.

Huggable Hoodie

I'm giving it a light blocking to see if I can stop the ribbing from rolling up, and I still have to get some buttons. The buttonholes are made using a simple yarnover followed by a k2tog and seem quite small.

I was wearing my Central Park Hoodie that I finished last October while taking these photos. Since I didn't get around to taking photos at the time, here you go now!

Central Park Hoodie

Central Park Hoodie

I wear this all the time. Seriously, as soon as it's through the washer and dried I sling it back on. The cotton blend yarn is heavy and slippery so it's always falling off one shoulder or the other and the weight of the hood pulls it back when I have it buttoned up, but I can live with that. It's so easy to wear and the cables are adorable. I thought this yarn was going to be a disaster with the pattern, but I think it really works! Although I could do without the ends popping out all over the place. I guess that's the nature of slippery yarn.

I will definitely make another CPH. Or perhaps even two.

Speaking of cotton, has anyone else found their minds idly drifting away to spring and summer knitting? I blame the crocuses braving the weather in my garden. Is there anything more able to lift the spirits than those little delicate spring flowers in all their bright colours?

February Crocuses

Sunday, 16 January 2011

One Month Before Heartbreak

Since Friday I have been trying to find the time and energy to write a post to contribute to the blogswarm event One Month Before Heartbreak. I doubt, at this stage, my writing will be anything ground-breaking, but I could not let this event go by without drawing attention to it.

I am not disabled, however I have plenty of first-hand experience to tell you that any of the blog posts you may read as part of this event are not unusual.

I had planned to write about the worrying trend I see in the public attitude to disability here in the UK. I have plenty to say about the increasing boldness of our media and politicians to talk about those claiming disability benefits as a burden on the public purse. I would probably have veered into the territory of writing about the misinformation that is out there about the nature of disability benefits and the dreadful language that is so casually used. And if I’d got started on the charity model of disability benefit provision that is increasingly talked of, or how the ‘most vulnerable’ will be protected, or the expectation that disabled people should be grateful and humble about any help they receive . . .well, I might never have stopped.

But it’s been a tough old week. I’ve been helping a loved one get through a current dignity-stripping DLA nightmare and it has taken its toll on me too. If the blogswarm had happened at another time perhaps you would have had more eloquence from me. I have already read enough posts tonight to know that anything I was going to write has already been covered wonderfully by others.

These events are unbelievably valuable. The ‘Blogging Against Disablism’ days have raised my consciousness an enormous amount. If you can find the time, please click on a few links in the Master List http://onemonthbeforeheartbreak.blogspot.com/p/master-links-list.html and hear some of the voices that we so rarely get to hear.

There are many, many posts worth reading from the personal to the factual; from the angry to the sad.

I will draw attention to this one http://onemonthbeforeheartbreak.blogspot.com/2011/01/welfare-cuts-and-callous-coalition.html as a good factual, journalistic piece.

Also to this one http://diaryofabenefitscrounger.blogspot.com/2011/01/you-will-never-take-away-my-shoes.html as one that made me both smile and cry a little with recognition.

Wednesday, 12 January 2011

WIP Wednesday

Believe it or not, I only have one knitting WIP on the needles at the moment. I have promised myself I can cast on for a new pair of socks when I have finished the front of my Huggable Hoodie.

Huggable Hoodie WIP

This is from the book 'Knits to Fit and Flatter' and I've been working on this since September. The whole thing is knitted in honeycomb cable, which is slow-going. I am cabling without a needle and have been getting faster the more I work on the project.

Sirdar Click Spruce

I'm using Sirdar Click, an acrylic/wool blend in the colour Spruce which was 89p a ball from the lovely Kemps. The colour is a dark green with a red 'halo' that doesn't come across well in any of the photos I've seen of it. I've used this yarn before in charcoal grey to make mitts for my husband and brother-in-law and I like the way it knits up. The honeycomb cable may be slow, but it makes the fabric double-thickness and it is wonderfully squishy!

As for the Welcome Quilt WIP, here is my first pinwheel block.

Pinwheel Block pieces

Pinwheel Block

I am a total sucker for green and pink together.