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Start-it Sunday-Wolf edition

Look at this, two posts in as many days! Don’t get used to it, I must admit! But I finally decided to start the wolf cross stitch, so yay for that! For those that haven’t seen it before, this is what I’m talking about

It’s done on 18 count which means that the final design is a ‘normal’ size for framing (5-7 inches), but is rather hard on the eyes! So far I’ve done approximately 2.5 hours work on it, so many many more hours to go! Ive said it before, and I’ll say it again, cross stitch is slooooowwwwwww.

This is the right eye (well, the hole in the middle will be the eye when I use that colour) and the side of the nose heading towards the end(????) of the nose. Is there a special name for the black bit on the nose???

Anyway…I think my eyes need a break from squinting at the fabric, so I’m off to do some more knitting…see you Wednesday (in theory!)

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Another update on all the things!

So, what has been going on here (other than a serious dearth of blogging?)

Well, firstly, the jumper is finished!!!! It is amazing and I love it, and so could the weather over here please get colder so I can wear the thing??? I’m curretnly working in short sleeve shirts it’s so warm at the moment!

(TAkins selfies is really hard…any tips, anyone???)Ok this one works better (note to self: protrait rather than landscape…)

I also went to my parents place this past weekend and finish-finished the two cross stitches I’ve done. Very happy with these 🙂

I haven’t yet started another cross stitch to replace that- I’m thinking of saving the wolf for Christmas and I’m not feeling the love on the stockings cross stitch. No need to rush it, I’ll work on them eventually 🙂 I have also just ordered the Wedding ABC cross stitch online for a wedding, so I guess I should probably start that soonish…

Instead I’ve been adding squares like crazy to the pillow case scrap ‘thing’ I’m doing. It’s still going strong, and I’m having great fun choosing which colour to add next 🙂

This is a close up of the current square because that stitch marker is so tiny!!!! And so cute!!!

The rainbow cardigan is also now back in the WIP pile since I finished the jumper. At the time of writing I am about to start sleeve shaping on the second side (which I’m not doing right now because my brain is tired), but I may be later than this when I get around to taking a picture of it… (as of taking the picture, the armhole has been shaped and I’m one the home run of *decrease every fourth row for 41 rows then cast off… Very excited!!!!)

And look at the stitch marker I’m using! It matches the yarn scarily well at this point!!! And the bell even works, which is amazing I think 🙂

Also, thinking ahead to Christmas- my mother has requested a pair of socks (well, she commented several times on how pretty the yarn colour is… ). I had her try on a pair of my socks and they fit her perfectly, so there we go. She’s also bought the yarn and pattern for a large shawl (400g of 4ply large), so I get to knit that for her for Christmas as well…:) The yarn is white and glittery which will be fun to knit. I also want to knit a triangular shawlette thing (I’m currently thinking Age of Brass and Steam, but feel free to shoot my other suggestions. I’m also thinking tassels sound fun…) with the leftover yarn from the jumper.

 

Oh, and one final thing. I’ve decided I want to start using stitch markers. I bought some lovely ones off the internet just after getting my row counter, so now I clearly need excuses to use them 😀 Hence the very little stitch marker in my scrap pillowcase knitting! Isn’t it so cute! So, random question but…does anyone have any tips on incorporating stitch markers into your knitting? I’m thinking other than at the start of the round if you’re knitting in the round. I’ve just never seen the need before and I want to start!

FO Friday- Hello! edition

So as I mentioned on Wednesday that I finished the Hello! cross stitch, so here it is!

I completely forgot to record how long it took me to sew, (oops!) but it’s so adorable!!! I just love both the watercolour effect and the negative-space writing. Gorgeous work :D. It will be finished properly in a hoop next weekend when I go back to my parents in Salisbury.

Now, what to do next??? I know I said I’d get back to my stockings, but there’s still that wolf to stitch which is calling me…hmm…let’s see what happens! What do you guys all vote?

WIP Wednesday- jumper edition (again)

So I prefer showing different makes in my WIP Wednesday posts, however when I settled down to do some more on my Hello! cross stitch to show that I have worked on it, I accidentally finished it…well, for some definition of ‘accidentally’, at any rate.

So now you lovely lot get another post about this jumper. And I’ll finally explain the madness behind the sleeve.

But first, I’ve split into the front and back and have started knitting the back 🙂 I decided to start the shoulder shaping on row 11. This was so that the cast off at the neckline for the collar will happen on row 5, which I feel is a good spot with regards to the front large cables. We’ll see how that plays out. It also means that the ‘knit 40 rows in pattern’ for the back starts on pattern row 2. *facepalm*. So I’m counting the rows with my jazzy new row counter and I’ll stop after row 42. (If I don’t forget…) But it’s still so amazing, and quick! I am amazed at how quickly knitting can work up, if you don’t work in 4ply and 2mm needles…

So, this whole sleeve length fiasco. In my binder, I have a 32 inch chest, so I’m adding 2 inches of positive ease and knitting the 34 inch size. The pattern technically calls for 4 inches ease but people who wear binders generally want less ease than people who don’t need to wear them. And I figure that when I get top surgery I’ll lose another couple of inches there as well.

Anyway, getting back to the point. I’m knitting the 34 inch size, and the sleeve length is 14 inches.????? My arms are 20 inches (measuring down the underarm). So naturally I made my sleeves 20 inches before decreasing for the shoulder.(I did however forget that the increases should be more spaced out so all the increases happened before you reach my elbow. *facepalm*. Lesson learnt for next time…) Are my arms unnaturally long for my (bound) chest??? Or is there something weirdly wrong with these sleeve lengths? Like, nearly half as long again seems rather impressively out??? Ahh well, I guess it’s just one of these things!

WIP Wed-Thur-Friday- jumper edition

Ok this post is a little late…it;s been a hectic week with induction events and looking after my landlady’s cats…

That is, the viva jumper edition 😛

Much much progress!

After finishing the sleeves on that thrice-cursed train ride (cheque is in the post), I finally got around to casting on for the body last Wedesday, at the Universtiy stall knitting group. Since then I have knitted quite a lot of it, which I’m chalking up to this amazing yarn sack my friend crocheted for me. I swear it’s giving me an extra 10% knitting speed or something!

(No idea about the yarn- maybe the new tweedy stylecraft??? Pattern is a crochet dragon egg, probably avaiable on ravelry…)

The only annoying thing about this pattern (other than the sleeve length but I’m still going to tlak about that later rather than right now) is that there are two cabled patterns. One is cabled every 4 rows, the other every 12 rows. And while I can tell whether I should be cabling if I’m working flat, I can’t in the round. Excellent excuse for more knitting goodies, methinks 🙂 So I have acquired a row counter off etsy.

It’s taking a bit of getting used to, especially after using stitch markers of the ‘just slide it over’ cariety for so long, but I’m loving it! I’m also loving the gentle tinkling noise it makes, so I’m rather tempted to get some other stitch markers with bells on…we shall see. I should probably be saving more of my money after buying a rather expensive bike recently!

 

 

Update on EVERYTHING

Holy strewth batman has it really only been a week (almost) since I wrote on this blog???? So much has been happening here. Major news first: my viva went really well (I loved it, my supervisor told me that the report he saw about it was excellent). So now I’m nearly officially a Dr- I just need to complete all the changes my two examiners suggested and send it to my internal examiner. And then some paperwork. I’m also quite tired still from all the stress leading up to the viva and the late nights after the viva while I was with my friends from the Uni. So I have no idea where htis blog post will go. I just feel the need to get it all out before I can get on with everything!

Right. Onto the crafting.

Cross stitch- I finished the ‘make today amazing’ cross stitch. I appear to have gone wrong somewhere- the edge stitches are out but it’s not noticeable and I’m not fussed enough to work out where the mistake is.

I then started this next one. It will eventually say ‘Hello!’, but I’m also kinda loving the ‘Hell’ that is somewhat currently going on! Not enough to leave it on hell, but it’s amusing while I work on it. This one is definitely more time consuming, but it will be wonderful when finished. If it’s done by the next time I go back to my parents, I can finish it in its hoop then (it should be). It will be mine in the end (I just love the colours!) When this one is finished, I will start the wolf one. Very Exciting too! (Then I’ll get back to the stockings. Promise…)

Knitting- so the rainbow cardigan is still waiting for me to get around to frogging the shoulder shaping. I’m guessing that will probably happen at the weekend now, since that’s my first big window of opportnity to do things…(I really should be sleeping now since I’m so exhausted). I don’t have any socks on the needles (shock horror!!!) but there is the scrappy pillow case which is slowly being added to. Technically that’s also not on the needles as there isn’t a square on-going, but semantics. (Picture of the rainbow cardigan with a button option I talk about later on)

So since the rainbow cardigan was in time out, I started cockatoo brae’s sleeves to take on the train- I couldn’t take nothing after all, and I *thought* I could remember the needles I used on the gauge swatch about a year ago (mistake #1). I also didn’t take any socks, just in case (mistake #2).My gauge is wayyyyyy off (well, according to the delights of working 4ply. I have 24 stitches at 3 inches. Gauge should be 28 stitches at 4 inches…) I haven’t quite given up on cockatoo brae with these needles- I will try washing the sleeves I have done so far, to see whether I just need to wash it to get gauge (slim chance but just in case…) If I still don’t get gauge, then I’ll try larger needles on one sleeve and turn that into the gauge swatch. (Pictured with buttons which I talk about later)

Naturally I learnt/figured this gauge issue while in York, with the prospect of a 5 hour trian ride back to Bristol (longer than normal due to track works between Parkway and Temple Meads. Great…). Answer: go yarn (and needle!) shopping. My first plan was to get some sock yarn since I had my 2mm needles from when I started cockatoo brae. Of course, first plans don’t survive contact with the enemy, and I ended up getting 6 hanks of aran weight yarn and a sweater pattern… I’m knitting with in a mostly mottled brown with flecks of orange and blue in yarn. Not my first choice, but they only had two of that yarn and I needed more than that!(Yarn picture later on)

My original plan was to come back to Bristol on Saturday, so that I had Sunday to catch up on sleep, go shopping etc…unfortunately I missed my train and my friend I was staying with suggested I stay another night and go back on the Sunday. A quick check of the train times said that if I caught the 9:33 I’d be back in Bristol by half 2, leaving plenty of time to go shopping before the shops shut at 5 (Sunday remember). So I happily cast on for my sleeves (two at a time, remember!) and set about starting the Saturday afternoon. Unfortunately, (there’s always an unfortunately, isn’t there?), there was a problem with my 5 hour train ride on the Sunday, and we got stuck for 3 hours outside this piddly little village because some idiot had stolen the copper cables of the line, so the signals were down. So, long story short, I finished my sleeves, didn’t have any scissors to cut the yarn (nor did anyone nearby)(note to self: acquire that nifty cutter thing that looks like a pendant), and missed the opportunity to go shopping that day. *lesigh*. On the other hand: finished matching sleeves! (I’ll discuss the weird sizing things with this pattern later, otherwise we’ll be here all night!)

Stash: the stash I mentioned in passing two blog posts ago finally arrived. But before the pics, I need to share the backstory to these two sweaters with you all. One of my friends got me into this fanfiction where one of the main characters(Remus Lupin) is a knitter, and knits a cardigan for his partner. It’s oversized, cabled and is grey with flecks of colour throughout. Ever since I read about that cardigan, I wanted one (maybe not oversized, but the rest of it sounds amazing). I figured that finding the right yarn would be the hard part, and then I’d find a pattern (I cannot possibly imagine a world where there are not millions of patterns for cabled cardigans in every conceiveable yarn weight). I didn’t tell anyone about my desire to find this yarn, it felt too personal. It was between me and the yarn. And it was hardly a pressing urge, I have plenty of other things to knit! Then I came to Bristol and walked into the first crafty store to explore how good it is, and there, right in front of me was a ball of Wendy’s aran in ‘dollymix’. Cream with flecks of colour throughout. Perfect (Ok it’s not grey but it still works perfectly). Now to find a pattern. I scour ravelry, and find one possibility. *facepalm*. Ok, one is fine, it’s all I need. I mention this to my friend, along with a link to the yarn, and she sees a similar colourway- this one blue with flecks throughout. It’s called Lupin. Talk about fate! How could I not knit them a matching cardigan in that colourway??? So I order 3 balls in each of the colourways, and they have arrived. Now just to find the time to knit them… (No pic of these in the end as I can’t get my camera to take a pic remotely true to colour. I imagine that ravelry has plenty :D)

 

Other stash- buttons! So the other thing I love about York is the button shop. I needed a button for the jumper I had just bought the yarn for and buttons for cockatoo brae. I wasn’t sure about sizes for the jumper button, so I got two and figured that I’ll find a use for the one I didn’t use. Then at another shop I found different contenders for buttons for the rainbow cardigan. So now I have two sets of tacky buttons to try on the tacky cardigan (friends words but completely true!) Again, I’m sure I’ll find a use for the buttons not used! I also nearly bought another set of buttons with the express point of finding a cardigan to go with the buttons, but I managed to resist the temptation of being ordered not to. Does anyone else find that as soon as someone tells them not to do something, you immediately want to do the thing??? Picture of the two potential buttons on a sleeve of the jumper.

Right, that is me now all caught up! Phew! What a ridiculously busy week! And the new students arrive soon, so now rest then!

WIP Wednesday- problem edition

One thing I have learnt from knitting is that sleeves hate me. Many of you probably remember from when I was knitting my first cabled cardigan that my gauge changed significantly between sleeve 1 and sleeve 2. It all blocked out, but it was a little strange.

Guess what’s just happened on my rainbow cardigan??? Got it in one. Now, the cabled cardigan I could excuse given the length of time between me knitting the two sleeves, but there wasn’t that long a time between them for the rainbow cardigan.

The sleeve on the left was knitted first, and I measured that after doing all the increases. Since I had reached the stopping point, I happily got on and knitted the cap. So when it came to the second sleeve, I remembered (and checked) that I hadn’t knitted beyond the final increase before decreasing, and so I went along my merry way knitting the second cap. Finish the cast off, line them up next to each other to take a picture and…oops. The weird thing is is that it’s only the row gauge which has changed. The top and bottom are still the same width as each other. It just really looks like I haven’t knitted the same number of rows between increases (I checked that, I have).

Having slept on it, I think that my best bet will be to frog to the last increases and just knit the extra length. It won’t be that noticeable, and I can’t be bothered to frog the first sleeve and reknit it, hoping that I get the same gauge. However, if anyone has alternative ideas, I’d be delighted to hear them!

In the meantime, while I mull over that some more, I think I’m going to cast on for cockatoo brae. Starting with the sleeves (two at a time. I can be taught!)

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