Somewhere I can let out my inner crafter without being labeled as even more insane.

Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Extreme Stash Enhancement

So, I graduated on Friday. And then on Saturday I went on a yarn crawl with my old friends from Uni. I bought rather a large amount of yarn…2.1kg to be precise. Totally worth it, even if it technically wasn’t everything I wanted to get…*whistles innocently*

So I’m knitting 9 pairs of socks for my mum, specifically out of the WYS bird range. Which involved buying 17 balls of yarn for contrasting toes and heels (they didn’t have kingfisher so I’ll get that online later). The contrasting colours are a bit dull, but they match perfectly which is amazing (the WYS website lists which yarns work as contrasting colours, which is reall nice). My original plan was to use the leftovers to knit hexagon flowers (centre hexagon in the bird yarn, surrounded by plain colour hexagons) into a blanket using the Beryll pattern, but now I’m also thinking that I could knit another 9 socks the other way around, so bird yarn for toes and heels and the main part in plain yarn and pattern. And then do a smaller scrap blanket with just random placement. We shall see…

I *think* these are matched correctly…I will check before I start knitting them!

I also (as promised) bought the yarn and buttons for buttonbox. Plus an emergency skein in case. So that’s the other 400g.

I also got a cross stitch kit as a present from my mum as a ‘congratulations’. It’s going to be amazing, but I really can’t justify starting it anytime soon 😦 I just have so much other stuff to do first! It’s pretty much just in shades of blue and grey, with some red for berries on the bushes, and (apparently) beads and sparklies. I just can’t see them without opening the kit which I’m not going to do yet. Still very exciting 😀

And finally- this doesn’t really count as new stash, as I got it over Christmas- when I went to stay with a friend and we went to visit someone, and they decided to give both me and my friend a crochet Christmas tree decoration (I am hilariously amused that this both describes what it is and what it’s for…)

Advertisements

The thing about sleeves…a cautionary tale in three parts.

The thing about sleeves is that they’re expected to be identical (or symetrical, depending on the pattern, but that’s not the important part of this lesson). They should be the same length, width, and (if they are patterned) finish at the same point on the pattern. I have, in three of the five jumpers/cardigans I have knitted, flubbed all three of those expectations.

Exhibit 1.

The first cardigan I made was Vermillion Cliffs (ravelry link).

Now, this cardigan…it took me over a year to make it, so I guess it isn’t that surprising that my gauge changed quite significantly, and luckily in the end it did block out. (I still need to make a second one- slightly longer in body and sleeves). So noharm donw in the long run. Still a bit strange, bit there we go.

Exhibit 2.

My incredibly tacky rainbow cardigan (ravelry link).

Now, having half learnt my lesson from last time, I did wait months between sleeves on this thing. I did, however, knit them one at a time. *cough mistake #2 cough*. I’m not sure what went wrong (at the time I blamed gauge, but I guess I could have spaced my increases differently, but I really do think I followed the pattern the same for both sleeves). What happened was that on the first sleeve, the increases were spaced far enough apart that they finished right before I had to start decreasing for the shoulder. So when the second sleeve came around I happily finished the increases and then started decreasing immediately. Leading to one sleeve being quite a bit shorter than the other. *facepalm*. So I frogged back to the start of the shoulder shaping (this yarn is NOT designed to be frogged), and knitted straight until it looked the same length as the first sleeve and then I did the shoulder shaping. Much better (but guess what I found when I sewed it all together after blocking? Yep, the second sleeve was then slgihtly longer than the first. It showed a bit until I sewed the buttons on, and that really does a good jop of straightening it all out and hiding the fact).

Exhibit 3.

I have no idea at all how this mistake came into being. The cardigan I am currently working on for my friend (ravelry link).

(You can’t really see it in the pic, and I figure it won’t be really noticeable, but one sleeve has two more rows of the pattern than the other)

So, I learnt my lesson (and mentioned it to you guys on here when I started) and knitted most of the sleeves TAAT on a circular needle. Then , when it came to split for the shoulder shaping, I did them one at a time, figuring that there weren’t that many rows, and I wasn’t measuring, so they should end up the same, right? #no.

Somehow, I added an extra 2 rows to one of the sleeves. ?????? How, I have no idea, but clearly I can’t be trusted to do sleeves at all. The only reason I didn’t do both sleeves shoulder shaping at the same time was because I didn’t have them set up nicely on the needles to do it. Lesson learnt, next time move stitches around so you don’t have to do anything one at a time!

So, when knitting sleeves: always do them TAAT. Even when shoulder shaping. Move stitches around, and don’t trust yourself to pattern match about 20 rows.

 

Honestly, it’s a wonder how I can get matching socks!

 

WIP Wednesday- Catch up from Chritmas edition

Phew! Christmas really went on for far too long this year (last year?), partially due to visiting friends, which generally I had previously avoided. However, it is finally over (or at least will be when I manage to shift this cough), and we can all get back to normal.

So, let’s get back to business! Kita’s cardigan is coming along a storm, I have 37 of the 50 cm before armhole shaping done now (and 4/5 of the buttonholes), although I still haven’t memorised the pesky back central cable.

The sleeves have been completely finished, but that’s a whole separate blog post (remember my issues with getting matching sleeves? Still got that somehow)

And two pairs of socks have been started. One pair you saw last Wednesday, and they haven’t had any more doing to them since then (just a toe and some of the pattern), but there is also a sock which is much further on, so I’ll show you that one instead.

I’ve finally had enough of vanilla socks, but strong stripes like this generally don’t go with intricate patterns very well, so I’m trying variations. This is a waffle stitch (wich you probably can’t see…I’ll try and get a better pic later on)- 3 rows stocking stitch, 3 rows 3×3 rib (3 because I do 66 stitch socks). Repeat ad infinitum…I’m also trying an afterthought heel, put in when the sock foot length is from the tip of my middle finger to the wrist joint. I’ll keep you all informed how it goes 🙂 This is actually my second attempt at a pair of socks from this yarn- I got through the foot and heel of a pattern which involved slipped stitches, but I hated it so I decided to start again. I am much prefering this pattern, and think that (provided I learn how to count to 3 reliably…) this may become my go-to ‘vanilla’ pattern. We shall see.

 

And also, bonus update on the Wolf, even though I haven’t been working on it over Christmas. I stopped timing how long it was taking me, because it was starting to stress me out, but I have done quite a lot more than the last time you all saw it!I’m hoping to finish off the top by the end of January (including all the backstitching I haven’t yet done), but we shall see.

Start (and finish)-it Sunday, and January goals

So, as I have previously mentioned, my word of the year for 2018 is ‘Preparation’. And after doing my ‘Hello!’ and ‘make today awesome’ hoops, I decided to start making a cross stitch of my word of the year. And so this afternoon I did so. I didn’t exactly intend on finishing it today, but it was a very quick and easy stitch. 🙂

And now, a few days late (so much for being prepared!), my goals for January. This is the first time I’m trying this out, so we’ll see how I go!

  • Stitch and finsih Preparation (already half done!)
  • Finish and sew together Kita’s OLAS cardigan (this includes buttons and pockets…)
  • Carry on with the wolf cross stitch (the aim is to finish it next month, which might be a tall order…)

We shall see how I go!

FO Friday- multiple projects edition

So I guess I can add one to the 2017 finished object pile- I (finally) got around to sewing on the poppers and buttons to finish it.

I started this (finally) back in June, although it has been mostly finished for a while now- I just had to wait until I went to my parents place for Christmas to block and sew it together. The sleeves weren’t the same length (there’s a whole post coming about sleeves…), but apart from that I’m really please with how it came together. I even didn’t wait to sew the buttons on before I started wearing it as a slouchy cardigan on Christmas Eve! And now I get to wear it as a proper cardigan!

Yes, there are 5 buttons on it. They’re all different colours, but I made a point about matching the embroidary thread to the button colour. It’s so delightfully tacky!

I also finished, blocked and gave my mum’s shawl to her for Christmas. No picture of that because I’m a muppet, but it was well received (along with the shawl pin I got her). In the end I needed to do another 3 inches of stocking stitch before I could cast off and block, but it was totally worth it!

And the seagull! I don’t think I mentioned this when I started it, but I decided that my aunt should have a seagull to go in her beach hut cupboard, and proptly started making her one. It was made and delived on Christmas (it stands if the beak is bent, rather amusingly), and my aunt has decided that it’s too cute to live in a cupboard and only be seen by people who are being nosy, and so will live on the mantlepiece.

New stash: Christmas edition

O…kay, so I may have gone slightly overboard… But it’s Christmas, so who can resist really? (Actually, now I’m thinking about it, it was 3 balls of yarn and two cross stitch Christmas tree ornaments, oh and a new set of sock needles…)

So, three more balls of sock yarn (one of which has already been started…naturally!)

and some more cross stitch ornaments!  (Even though I haven’t done the Mill Hill kit I got ages ago…)

That’s it! No more craft purchases expect for already planned projects! That means (off the top of my head, I reserve the right to have forgotten things!) yarn for a masc buttonbox (one of the jumpers I talked about making) and the sock yarn for my mum’s Christmas socks. Oh, and anything else I need for other Christmas presents. I think that’s it. Let’s see how well this goes! (And a set of scales, as I would really like to start measuring how much yarn I use in a year!) Right, I should get back to crafting, I have 20+ things to make (it was 19, then I remembered the wolf cross stitch, so we’re up to 20 plus assorted extras)

2017 look back and 2018 plans

Right, 2017 is nearly over (might in face be over by the time I finish this and get it posted, I’m not sure how long this is going to bed), and wowsa what a year!

Finished the PhD, got a job, knitted (checks ravelry) 9.5 projects on ravelry (the half was finishing the scrappy hexagon blanket), very nearly finished the rainbow cardigan (it is currently being used but I need to sew buttons on and I can’t do that whilst wearing it…), did four cross stitches (Hello, make today awesome and two stockings). Plus Christmas cards, the seagull (remind me to tell you about that later, it’s so cute!!!) and probably seeral other things. But I definitely feel that I haven’t done as much this year as I have in previous years (the PhD probably contributed to this!).

So, next year! As I announced a while ago, my 2018 word is going to be ‘Preparation’. I was rather hoping to have cross stitched this by now, but at least I have a pattern (Christmas knitting rather took over…). So as well as wanting to cross stitch that (I’m rather thinking a grey for the word, I don’t really feel that it’s a bright colour sort of word), I’ve decided to come up with a list of projects I want to make next year.

So far, I have:

Cross stitch my ‘preparation’

Kita’s OLAS cardigan- the sleeves are nearly finished, must remember to blog about that!

My OLAS cardigan- I’m not sure whether I want it big or not, so I’m using Kita’s as a sounding board- I’ll be able to try it on wince we’re about the same size, and see what’s what

Cockatoo Brae- I know I’ve been having a really hard time hitting gauge, but I really want this cardigan!

Masc buttonbox- it’s a really nice waistcoat pattern, I just want a masc version of it. Will have to blog about that too when I get the yarn for it 🙂

Socks for mother- she loves the bluetit yarn I used for some socks, and requested some socks with it. I decided to raise this to a pair of socks in every bird colourway West Yorkshire Spinners do (9). I’m also thinking that if I use contrasting yarn for toes and heels (afterthougt heel, I’m turning into a massive fan of it), I can use the rest of the yarn to make a bedspread- I’m thinking hexagon flowers of central colour in the bird yarn, surrounded by hexagons in the solid colour in some pattern. West Yorkshire Spinners suggest which of their solid yarns goes with each of the bird yarns, so I wouldn’t have to guess from the internet pictures if I can’t find a stockist of it.

Rachel’s wedding sampler- I don’t know when she’s getting married (after she finishes her PhD), but I’d hate to be caught out with this, so this becomes my cross stitch priority after I finish the wolf

Two wedding cards- as well as Rachel’s wedding (Mr and Dr by the time she finishes her PhD), I’m going to a same-gender wedding between a Mr and a Dr. I would be very surprised if I could find a suitable card for either of them, so I’ll have to make my own. Which involves finding a suitable pattern, but I figure that’s more likely, and I can always modify something if necessary…

2 pillow covers- Kita’s is nearly finished, mine hasn’t been started, but this plan has sort of ground to a halt since I need to replenish my sock yarn scraps for them…maybe ‘knit myself more socks’ would be a better plan…

2 blankets for me- I really want the woodland blanket attic24 is bringing out soon, and I would definitely want the larger size. I’m also thinking that I want the larger cosy blanket as well.

That’s all for now, which comes to a grand total of 21 projects (counting my mum’s as 9), and not counting any socks for me to do the pillow covers. Umm. This….could be interesting. Ok, let’s scratch the pillow covers, they’re probably the most unrealistic in the whole thing, thanks to not haivng very much scrap yarn. So, summarising, we have:

4 jumpers (aran, aran, aran, 4ply)

2 (large) blankets (crochet, DK)

2 cross stitch cards

1 large cross stitch

1 small cross stitch

9 pairs of socks.

I’m still not convinced that I can do all of this (but plans are still great), but that doesn’t seem so completely insane at the moment. Obviously, this isn’t everything I want to do this year (I have no other Christmas presents planned yet…), but I think this is pretty much the backbone of it all. Actually, looking at my Christmas list, it could well be that no-one else gets a hand-made present next year…

Other things I want to do: more cross stitch stockings and knit me more socks. It’s hard to be precise about these, because how many do I want to make? I don’t want to have a set number to hit, because I think that if I manage that I’ll stop then making them, and I don’t want to do that. I also want to make some knitted birds from a book my parents gave me for Christmas, but I need a lot more thinking to decide which ones (as well as what to do with them after they’ve been made…)

I also want to organise this blog a lot more in 2018. Organise my tags, retag most/all of my posts, have a look at organising posts in different ways etc. I’m also thinking of having a page for finished object posts, and maybe in thos posts link back to the beginninng/WIP posts I’ve made for them all. Or even just link it all to ravelry…we shall see. This is the thng I think is most likely to fall through the cracks, but we shall see. At some point I shall try to remember to have a look at what it’s currently like and hopefully break down the whole thing into manageable chunks.

I also have more not-crafting goals and plans for next year (including getting a new job…), but I’m not sure if people would be interested in hearing them??? Or do you all just come here for the crafting??? (In which case, sorry for the lack of pictures, there will be some later when I do finished posts for the shawl, and the rainbow cardigan and the seagull…)

Tag Cloud

Ever The Crafter

Chronically ill and crafting

Julia's Creative Year

my year of trying to be more creative in different ways

Very Berry Handmade

Sharing sewing, crochet and home cooked inspiration!

Kick Arse Crochet

And other damned cool stuff!

Vix Knits... and crochets and sews...

My adventures in the wonderful world of arts and crafts

Cables and Colours

Somewhere I can let out my inner crafter without being labeled as even more insane.

craftandothercrazyplans

Trial and error-the best way to learn

Backstrap Weaving

My weaving , my indigenous teachers, my inspiration, tutorials and more........

Agujas

The Art of Knitting

Dartmoor Yarns

Knitting on Dartmoor

IntrovertedKnitter

Fiber Artist and Introvert making her way through an Extrovert Centered World

sewingbutterfly

Cross-stitch Project Progress and Random Life Updates

FogKnits

Yarn Collecting and Occasional Knitting

theunfinishedcrafter

A chronic sufferer of 'new-project-itis', I'm hoping this inspires me to finish some of my unfinished projects.

The 2nd 35 Years

Stirring the Pot Since 1978