Warmth

I write this sitting on my sofa on a cold, damp and windy Sunday morning. I have my husband and my dog sharing the sofa. I have a crocheted blanket over me. Husband and I have coffee. The dog does not, fortunately! And I have just eaten some gorgeous orange and pumpkin seed rye bread with applewood smoked cheese.

I have been catching up on podcasts (most recently 2 Knit Lit Chicks – although I’m still several episodes behind) and working on my Christmas mittens. Which are coming out beautifully. I am using a pattern I found on Ravelry by Terry Morris which is a combination tutorial and pattern. I chose it largely because it was a pattern for simple mittens in the weight of yarn and size of needle I wanted to use, and am so far very pleased with my choice.

In a little bit I will have to get up and get on with all of those parts of life that are less idyllic. Less in line with the warm, cosy, perfect style life that so many of us like to portray online. Housework, fixing the broken cupboard door, studying, taking the dog out into the cold, damp and windy outside.

But this is such a lovely moment that I wanted to share it. Next time I will share one of the less social-media-worthy moments!

I’m Back!

I’m back! I have been busy in the last few months arranging and then recovering form a wedding. It is, however, now time to return to the real world.

If you follow me on Instagram you might have seen the knitting carrying on. I am currently working on a pair of Christmassy themed mittens. I’m using some yarn I bought from Rosie’s Moments at the Bakewell Wool Gathering last month. There’s not much to report on these as I am quite literally a couple of inches in, and they are mainly ribbed cuff. I think they will be lovely, though. They are knitted at a tighter gauge than I would use if I was making socks, so they should be snuggly and relatively weather-proof. As it starts to get cold now, this sort of knitting is particularly exciting.

I will have more to say soon, but needed to break the seal on blogging again!

Crafty Update

This last couple of weeks have been pretty low on crafty endeavours. There are times where, frankly, life happens, as I mentioned in my last post.

Having said that, there has been some progress.

I am working on a pair of faux-cable socks in some bright pink yarn I bought from my friendly local Tiger shop. These are great because they are so low-hassle and that’s something I really need in my life right now.

I have also been spinning a little. After finishing a major project, I wanted something little, a palate cleanser. I also wanted to use something that I’ve had for sometime. I had a little tiny bag of Black Shetland/ Silk top that I bought from Sparkle Duck the last time I went to Woolfest which was… in 2013. It seemed perfect, and so it is. I am also resisting the temptation to spin it super-super-fine, which is my usual MO. I want it to be a quick and happy project. Once I have my singles, I’ll chain/navajo ply them and call it done. The silk in this top is a beautiful shade of blue and the resulting single is just lovely.

Sparkle Duck Shetland SilkSparkle Duck Shetland Silk

Sparkle Duck Shetland Silk

Anything else…?

I may have mentioned before about joining the Scollay-along. Well, sadly, it’s off the table. It turns out that I am rather bigger than I thought, and therefore have insufficient yarn for the project. As I am not currently in a position to buy additional yarn, I will have to shelve the idea at least for now. And work hard on finding something that I can knit out of 1320 yards of yarn at a 21 stitch gauge. Which is pretty easy with Ravelry’s excellent search capabilities. It’s just that a) it needs to be something that I can wear out of 1320 yards of yarn (as opposed to someone who is a wee slip of a thing) and b) it has to be my style. It is the bringing together of these two aspects that is causing me some trouble. In my search I have managed to buy two patterns which, it transpired, did not meet the requirements of point a.

Moving on from that tale of woe… I have a small number of finished objects also. One is yarn I finally finished spinning, and the other is my second Easy by Martina Behm. That is awaiting blocking and so you will have to wait for a picture, but here is a picture of my finished yarn:

Feltstudio UK BFL Silk

Feltstudio UK BFL Silk

There are two skeins of it, it is a fractal spun two-ply laceweight and I have managed to create approximately 1500 yards of yarn! Which is a first for me. I’m very eager to knit it up, but need to find a pattern that will make the most of the fractal spinning and also factor in the lightweight nature of the yarn.

I Made a Mistake

So, I started August with such good intentions. I was going to blog multiple times a week, I knew what I was going to say, it was all fine. Then Life happened. In the form of multiple illnesses. And so sadly pretty much everything fell by the wayside that was not crucial to survival.

However, I am here, I am in the process of rejigging my blogging plans, and will just carry on from here!

Today, I wanted to talk about the dyeing. I am, as I am making no secret of, a newbie dyer. But I am slowly slowly building up and putting things out there. Which is incredibly exciting!

Of course, there are times when it’s also going horribly wrong. Although in a couple of cases now, the thing I thought was horribly wrong at the time has resulted in one of my favourite colourways. An example is one of the ones I did last night, which I won’t share yet (it’s still bobbing about on the line), and another is the yarn pictured below, some lovely BFL Sock yarn which after much consideration, I have named Sweetie. It reminds me a bit of candy necklaces, although it’s much more muted and darker than your average candy necklace. It was not intended to look this way. Not even a little bit. I hated it so much that I over-dyed it. And now I love it. I wrote copious notes, and hopefully in due course can intentionally create something similar.

2015-07-12 17.33.53 - Copy

Why am I sharing this information? Because I’m a newbie, and things go wrong. They go wrong for all of us and sometimes it doesn’t hurt to show our vulnerability. Of course I didn’t need to tell you this yarn was a mistake. But with mistakes come learning, and I am a big fan of learning.

In the interests of full disclosure I also have some skeins that will never make it into the shop and some that worked as planned first time. But the ones that went right – well, what did I learn from that!?

Announcing a Giveaway!

I have decided to do a small giveaway. One of the skeins of yarn I will dye this month will be set aside purely for this purpose. There will, of course, be photos in due course, but right now…

The deal!

If you’re interested in winning a nice skein of sock yarn, please leave a comment telling me about your favourite colour and as a result, you’ll be in the running!

Happy Saturday, Dear Internet

I sit here with a mug of hazelnut coffee. The sun is doing its best to shine through the still drawn curtains. I am wearing pyjamas and my dressing gown, and am leaning at an odd angle from my sofa to type using the keyboard on our rather messy coffee table.

I like Saturday mornings like this. They have so much potential. It’s still quite early; the sun is shining, and I can plan All of The Things for my day. For example:

Today I will take advantage of the sunshine by doing multiple loads of washing. Today I will finally get gauge for my Scollay cardigan and be able to join the knitalong properly. Today I will finish spinning the singles for the yarn I have been spinning since December last year. Today I will sort through some of the old papers that recently returned to my possession. Today I will do the food shopping. Today I will clear the coffee table. Today I will catch up with my podcasts.

Maybe.

At this point in the day, the point is not what I actually will or won’t do. It’s what I could do. And it’s my favourite thing about Saturday mornings.

Scollay-along

I’m a huge fan of podcasts, and lately something I have been hearing about is a knit along for the Scollay cardigan by Karie Westermann being run by Louise of the Knit British podcast and Isla of Brityarn. I love knit alongs, and the cardigan is beautiful, so I thought I should join in. Of course, I already have quite as many works-in-progress as I need. More, in fact… Possibly around 10, but I couldn’t comment.

But it all feels serendipitous because I have in my yarn stash some red Brigantia DK that I received from my parents-in-law last Christmas that feels like a perfect option for this. I have just over 1300 yards of the yarn, so as long as I factor that into my sizing and style decisions, I think it should be fine. I have a choice between medium and large depending on yarn quantities and how much ease I decide I want the cardigan to have. These are decisions to make another day…

In the meantime, i am swatching. At least, I am trying to. I am having one of those weeks where i simply am failing to have the time to even knit a swatch. The bad news is that unless my first swatch is right on gauge (and it won’t be) I stand no chance of getting to join in with the cast on party or, rather more importantly, starting at all until gauge is sorted. Ho hum. This is what happens when you’re late to the party!