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A spinning update

So, the crafting has been very quiet here recently, so this is clearly an excellent opportunity to catch you all up on my spinning.

I’m still doing the green/purple/copper singles for some scarfy thing. This is about 68 grams of it, and so far it comes to about 316 yards, which isn’t bad at all, me thinks 🙂 (I love the disparity between my skein sizes!)

 

And I’m also doing some two-ply spun from the fold to make it nice and smooshy. I think I’m under-spinning and under-plying this, but oh well. It adds to the smooshyness. If anyone wants to comment on it, feel free 🙂

 

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More new stash

Ok, fine, I admit it. I’m just feeding the stash beast at this point. But, in my defense, it was a new yarn shop, and you have to support your local, right?

So, firstly, some more sock yarn! This will (theoretically) become Christmas socks, but…

The purple contrast for toes, heels and cuffs is actually this really bright pink, and there are specks of ‘fairy lights’ in the green yarn. Christmas tree socks! Which, knowing me at the moment (knitting has kinda fallen by the wayside…), may get done over the Easter break…

Other theoretically) socks yarn!However, this stuff has sparkles, so I’m thinking maybe another Age of Brass and Steam. Or some triangular shawl thing I can wear. But I’m not sure how big I want to make it. Which isn’t a problem since those are made up from the middle out. I can always make matching handwarmers with the extra I guess 🙂

And finally: Slytherin fibre!

This is 100g of BFL/bamboo/nylon which I’m currently thinking I’ll spin quite chunky and knit…something. It’s for a friend, so I’ll have a sneak peek through their ravelry and see what they like. And then probably not spin it for another few months…

So yeah, that’s me. Not really crafting at the moment, but still feeding the stash!

All the socks!

Well, not quite. But close 🙂

Firstly, I finished my Socktober socks!!!! Ahead of schedule!

So this pair was a bit of an eye opener. I still had this idea that *of course* I could churn out a pair of socks in a week- after all, I managed 4 days when I was house hunting in York and that had two very long train rides and evenings/mornings completely free. *facepalm*. I now have a social life, and work, and I cycle everywhere rather than get car rides. This comes back to my ‘breathe’ thing. I am wildly optimistic about what I can do, and I have to figure that out for the sake of my sanity.

 

Secondly I finished another pair of socks.

These were started a long time ago (December 2017 apparently…), but I wasn’t in any rush to finish them- they were convenient as my Uni knitting group project until I reached nearly the end and I didn’t want the kitchener stitch mess in my knitting group so I swpped them out for a different sock project there, and then never actually got around to finishing them. No rush 🙂 Then I took them to my spinning group yesterday and was suddenly reminded how close I actually was to finishing them and churned them out 🙂

 

And finally, I started a new pair!

After my spinning group I went round a friends house to, err, ‘Netflix and chill’, or rather ‘Netflix and craft’, I was knitting, one friend was knitting and the other friend was cross stitching. So natrally I needed a new pair of socks to take with me! A quick search through my queue (lovely thing, can’t believe it took me as long as it did to actually put in all my stash and find projects for everything on ravely 🙂 ) found this yarn and an easy pattern I didn’t need to print off. So I got a nice easy project to knit while watching tv with people. (Basically, yesterday was amazing and involved a lot of sock knitting and some spinning)

Vanilla

This past…umm, some vague unit of time? Maybe the entire month? I’ve forgotten, that isn’t the point. This past time has been stressful. Work has been ramping up, I’ve decided to stop forgetting that Christmas is around the corner, I finaly feel like my harp playing has reached the first major milestone of ‘my brain isn’t quite so melted at my lessons’ and there have been some other big personal upheavels. So it’s been predominantly positive, just insanely busy.

So when I got home yesterday from my harp lesson and realised I had the entire evening *to myself!*, I did what any sane person would do. I turned my laptop off, sat in near complete silence and crocheted. It took a while for my brain to realise it didn’t have to work, but I swear I felt when it did and just plonked down into zombie mode.

I only did about 4 rounds of DC (single crochet for my American friends 😉 ), but speed wasn’t the point. The point was sitting there doing the same thing over and over again, not having to think about anything (and trying to gently draw my brain away from anything it did try to think about).

In the end, I was there for about 45 minutes, listening to my clock and the sound of the yarn over the hook. It was (in hindsight) very necessary, and something I should aim to do more often. (It’s just finding the time to do so!).

So, my question to all of you- when was the last time you did something vanilla and repetative and didn’t try to distract yourself from the boring mundanity of it? As for me? I think I see more vanilla socks in my life (which I’m sure I don’t need, but not having to think about a pattern is the entire point of this…)

Feeding the Stash- I will use it soon (promise!) edition

So, since it is getting near the end of the year (I may in denial about Christmas, but the end of the year has no such connotations, so that’s alright. The New Year is allowed!) I’m looking forward to 2019, but I’m also aware that I’m currently piling too much on my plate, and I should do something about it. (But not right now, everything I’ve started needs finishing!)

So, next year will be the year I (try to) pace myself, and not end up saying yes to too many things. For one thing, I think I might make it a no handmade (by me) Christmas present year… Other than maybe the socks for my mother. That feels kinda scary to write, and quite possibly I will have forgotten by then, but we shall see.

Some of you may remember that this year my word of the year was preparation. I feel like I do now prepare more for things (hello monthly plans, I intend on keeping you!), and (drumroll please!), this year I have chosen:

BREATHE! This is a custom kit from Etsy designer NogPepperMe. I am very much looking forward to starting this (hopefully before 2019, but we shall see…), but I need to finish the socks and elephant first *lesigh*.

This word is going to be a challenge for me. I like making things, and I want to make all the things *now* (because tomorrow I’ll have a new pile of things to make). Remembering to breathe and not do everything I want because there isn’t enough time will be hard, but hopefully it will also make me more focussed and mindful of what things are actually important to me. I don’t have the time to do everything, and I need to remember that. I will try to bring back the timing myself to see how many hours I spend on things to hopefully learn how many craft hours I have in a week. (I have this vague craft plan to make lollipop sticks with units of time on so I have a visual way of seeing things, but that involves making things, and I’m trying to not do that so much…)

If anyone has any suggestions of things they’ve tried and worked, or things they’ve tried and didn’t work, or books I can read about it, please *please* leave them in the comments. I think I’m gonna need the help with this. But next year, I have too many things on right now!

Socktober- an update

So, we are now (almost) half way through Socktober, and I’m ahead of schedule! Woot! So I finished the first sock…Wednesday, I think it was. And it fits, and I love it, and it’s amazing and the pattern rocks.

Due to an inadvisibly busy social schedule however, I wasn’t able to start the second sock until yesterday, when I was so tired I defaulted to my usual toe and had to throw it out. I did start it again today at my spinning club, and got a decent chunk of the foot done (no pic because it’s dark now, but you can imagine really). IT’s a fun and engaging little knit, and I’ll definitely be doing this heel again if not the pattern (atm I don’t want to redo it, but in the future, we’ll see how things go).

Sock-it Sunday- test knit edition

So I got the sock pattern to test knit on Sunday, and I was very well behaved and didn’t start it until Monday. Then I dived right in, and didn’t really surface until today. It’s been a very strange feeling, following someone else’s pattern, with all their indiosyncrasies (John increases for the toe the other way around to literally every other person I know, which was weird and threw me for a loop (I didn’t)), but fascinating to see my own unconscious biases about the ‘correct’ or ‘wrong’ way to do things.

The pattern itself is cute and easily memorised (mostly). So much so, that I accidentally went past where I was supposed to start increasing and had to frog a few rows.

I was supposed to start at 3.25 inches from the back, here I am closer to 3.

And here I am with the heel turned!

I love this heel. It’s a gusset and short row heel, and I had to frog because apparently I am unable to count, but it only involves wraps (or the German replacement I use) on half of the heel, and the other half you just turn and work back again. I was very skeptical, but it works and I think I will continue to use this heel later on in other situations. 🙂 Just not in self-striping yarn bc I absolutely hate the random colour change that results from heels. I’ll keep sticking to afterthought/contrast heels for those.

If you click on the pic for a larger version of this, you’ll probably see the pattern a bit better. It’s a very subtle travelling cable thing. (Very precise, I know 😉 ). I love it, it’s simple enough to really get into it, but interesting enough to keep me entertained (think similar to Hermione’s every day socks).

The only thing I’m not very happy about is how little I’ve managed to do…I remember when I could bust out a pair of socks in a weekend, and here I am pootling along slowly. I kinda want to make these socks longer than normal too, which may involve increases for my thighs…*facepalm*

Ahh well, I’m off to go knit some more.

Let’s pretend it’s Wednesday and I’ll tell you about the elephant in the room

It is unfortunately nowhere near finished. Even if I hadn’t forgotten the week I spent away or the many weekends I was travelling rather than crocheting, I was also hit by a bad shoulder which meant no crochet for a (different) week 😦 I haven’t even finished the main head yet, for crying out loud!

Here’s where I’m up to, so far.

At least the front of the head is made, I guess! The tusks were really awkward to fit in, but I’m oretty happy with how it went.

I have a bit of a respite- the rest of my year plan for crafting looks like this:

October- test knit a pair of socks for John

November- do the writing NaNo (I write HP fanfiction)

December- knit my OLAS cardigan as a delayed NaNo project

(Then when January starts I’ll do most of that as the cross stitch NaNo and see how far into this wedding sampler I can get).

Am I slightly insane for thinking this is all feasible? Almost certainly. Am I going to learn from this if/when it all fails spectacularly. Probably not. And most importantly- what is the repite I was talking about?

Well, this comes in two parts.

A-I can easily knit a sock in less than a month, so I have quite a lot of October to also finish this elephant. (Also, the knitting group at Uni has started again so I have even more time to make things)

B- the pattern for the socks I’m test knitting hasn’t arrived yet, so even if I wanted to start work on it, I can’t. (John, please keep procrastinating…)

Right, I’m off to keep crocheting! Wish me luck on this deadline!

Let’s pretend it’s Frida, because I have some finishes!!!

Two, to be precise.

Firstly, I finally got around to doing the heel on the socks! Go me!

I can now give them to my friend on Tuesday, (assuming she’s there…) If not, they’ll keep I guess. No idea what to do with the left-over yarn, maybe list it for destash on ravelry. I don’t mind it (but it is a bit splitty), but it’s completely different to the rest of my sock yarn so I don’t think it’ll really fit into any of the scrapy blankets I’m doing.

The other project I’m calling done is the pocket.

Peacock feather! But rather than the blue and green normally associated with them I decided to do the whole thing in silver and gold. There was a bit of an explosion with the silver glitter but I sorted it out. It’s also shedding glitter everywhere, but hey ho. That’s what glitter does really 🙂 Now, hopefully I don’t lose my scissors any more…

A finish, an almost finish and a new start

Firstly: the finish. I finished the seagull! It isn’t finish-finished yet- no doubt it’ll be added to my pile of Christmas things to deal with later. Unfortunately, the other cross stitch I brough to do is my mother’s, so either I start that and kinda ruin the surprise (she’s the only one here who would notice, so clearly I’m a double muppet at times).

Secondly: the almost finish. I decided to make a pocket hoop to store my scissors, which have this really irritating habit of going missing…So I cut up a pair of jeans I can’t wear any more (I wore out the inseam horrifically…) and stuck that in a hoop with superglue. It’s good enough as it is, but I’m pondering two things

1-what embroidery do I want to do on the pocket? I think it needs brightening up somehow, but I have no idea what. Any suggestions??? I’m thinking sparkly- glitter or beads….or both?

2- do I need to do anything on the back? At the moment it’s bare and I feel as though I should do something, but I’m not sure what. Again, suggestions? Note to self- don’t do the back until you’ve finished the front

And thirdly: the new start. After finishing the seagull I wanted something that wasn’t on plastic canvas and didn’t involve beads. So I rummaged around in my small stash here and pulled out a very small house cross stitch I acquired at Yarndale many moons ago. Stitching on 18 count without a hoop is very fiddly (and there’s so much brown…)

 

This is what it will look like when it’s finished. It’s going to be tiny!Oh, and a bonus thing! I bought some more sock yarn- for a good cause, I swear! One of my friends (tumblr account) is dipping his foot into designing, and therefore needs a sock test knitting. How could I say no? Well, except that the design he made really wants a solid coloured yarn…hmm… new yarn shopping! I was very good and only bought one ball in this purple-grey-blue-brown yarn. Pretty enough for me, solid enough for the socks 🙂

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