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

Posts tagged ‘knitting’

Gauge swatches, gauge swatches everywhere and not a thing to knit

I have recently made….2.5 gauge swatches for jumpers. And then a little thing that’s alsmost a gauge swatch but I don’t care about gauge (so just a swatch???). And I finally got around to washing and blocking this gorgeous shawl.

 

Shawl first!

This is a Manos del Uruguay something (it’s in my ravelry but eh). It was very smooshy when it’s finished and I’m *really* hoping its wash didn’t stop that, but it really needed blocking so I’m kinda on tenterhooks here. It’s white and purple and green and I love it.

 

Double knitting! One of the members of my spinning group said that she wanted to learn double knitting, so I (foolishly?) piped up to say that I knew and I’d happily teach a class on it. So then I had to relearn how to double knit bc it was a while ago (ravelry says May 2017). It’s an amazing technique and now I’ve done some again I regret having abandoned it for so long (but not that much because I have no immediate plans to do something crazy like a double knit blanket.)

 

2.5 gauge swatches! The one on the left is for a 4ply jumper (full disclosure- the *pattern* is for a 4ply jumper. The yarn I got is 5 ply according to ravelry, so we shall see…). I swatched on 3.5mm and 3mm needles and I really hope one of them is good for gauge because the idea of knitting  sportweight yarn on 2.5mm needles when the pattern says gauge on 3.5mm needles is slightly insane, however much I’m getting sued to the idea that I knit *very* loosely!

The top right swatch is actually this really nice green for a cabled aran weight jumper. That swatch is on 4.5mm, 4mm and 3.5mm needles and I think (measuring the pre-washed swatch) the 3.5mm needles are on gauge.

The bottom is half a swatch- I want to see how this chunky yarn behaves after washing before I continue the swatch. There’s no point carrying on with these needles if I’m wildly out, but it’s currently on 5.5mm needles which is one size down from the suggested needle size so I’m hoping I get gauge on this (or close enough to justify continuing this swatch).

 

I currently don’t have anything (interesting) on the needles because I only have one set of 3mm needles and I don’t want to tie them up in a project at the moment because so many of them will likely need it (the next shawl I want to do, a different other shawl I want to do, hopefully that 5ply jumper….). Lets cast on a pair of socks, that seems like a good idea 🙂

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Stars: the buttoning

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again I’m sure: it’s amazing how quickly things grow when one…works on them!!!!!!

Therefore, I have reached the button bands part of Stars 🙂 This necessitated another gauge swatch, because I don’t follow instructions, and therefore can’t use the numbers given to me!!! I’m doing a garter stitch button band, to match the cuffs, hem and neckband. Therefore, I can’t use the numbers for the ribbing (which I couldn’t use anyway, since I lengthened the whole thing). A quick gauge swatch (after it finished lying to me) said 6 stitches an inch, so I prompted cast on 126 stitches for my 21.5inch long body. Which worked perfectly so yay me 😀

So now, audience members, my question to you: how many buttons???

Umm, so yeah…

I was planning on starting up the monthly goals again, but since we’re so near the end of January, it isn’t really worth it. I will briefly mention my current projects though, so I can get into it next week when I talk about my February goals…

My main piece is the ‘breathe’ embroidery. I had hoped to have it done by the beginning of January, but hey ho…I’m now hoping to get it done by the end of January. Fingers crossed this happens…

My other piece with a definite time limit is the cross stitch wedding sampler.

Sometime next week I will work out how fast I need to work on this to have it done by the end of June (I think the wedding is happening in August and it will need framing as well).

Finally, my current big knitting project is still cockatoo brae. I’ve fixed the neckline, and now am procrastinating over picking up the stitches for the button-band, so I will try to make a swatch to see how many stitches I need to pick up. That probably won’t happen until February, but we shall see…

Another update on Stars

Wow so apparently when you pour lots of time into kntting things, things actually get done! Who could possibly have guessed???

Anyway, that’s probably enough of the sarcasm! I finished knitting my Stars! Well, when I say finished…I finished the body, and it’s now ready for a bath, which it will get today. Then it has a week to dry while I’m in Paris (yarn crawl!!!!!!), and when I come back I can do the button bands, steek and generally finish it. Very exciting stuff!

It doesn’t fit perfectly around the neckline, but I’m going to chalk that up to the colourwork needing a wash and relax and not stress about it. I can also do something clever with the buttonban if necessary (maybe???)

I also feel like I should’ve put in more short rows because the front keeps riding up, but again, that’ll come out in the block, right??? I love the length of the body and sleeves, so score for adding the extra length!

WIP {insert day here}-Stars Edition

Well I haven’t been doing the Breathe embroidary, but I have been putting in many hours in Stars. Turns out that if I’m knitting, my parents stop hassling me to do something with them. Who knew??? And it keeps me calmer around them, which is another win really.

I (finally) reached the colourwork section. Very excited!

And then I always find the colourwork just whizzes along.

And I’m now on the second half, with all the decreases. It’s such an addictive pattern!

I would say I want to do more colourwork, but this year is jumpers, blankets and baby clothes (and baby is totally getting a small version of this cardigan 😀 ) and I’m not sure how many colourwork jumpers I really need…

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 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 🙂

Salisbury WIPs

So, in the interests of actually blogging (with pictures…) before even more time passes, I’m officially ignoring what day of the week it is (I’ve been turned around so many times the only way I now know what day it is is because I’m dogsitting).

I also forgot to take crafting pictures before I left Bristol, so instead you’re all going to get my Salisbury crafts.

Starting with this giant blanket. I tend not to do anything straight when I can help it, so this is deliberately knit diagonally (or as close to diagonally I can get without turning it into mitred squares).

This has been a WIP for a long long time (I’m avoiding checking ravelry to see how long) because a) it’s in Salisbury, where I’m not most of the time, and b) when I’m in Salisbury I’m usually working on something else. I just fancied pulling it out today. Don’t worry, I have more scraps than what’s left in that WW bag, I’m not about to run out 🙂

The other main WIP I have here is the butterfly fairy.

I’m working this right to left because the pattern is too wide for the scroll rods. It’s going to take agessss to finish (see reasons above). But it’s kinda hard to mind enough to actually move this to Bristol because it’s so big and would still take ages to finish. This way I get to pretend to myself that it would get finished earlier if I actually worked on it…Please note that isn’t actually the bottom yet…this thing is BIG.

And those are my two WIPs in Salisbury. Quite often I bring other projects (like the cross stitch seagull I brought this time), but they really *live* in Bristol and travel with me, whereas these two stay in Salisbury all the time. Next time while I’m still here I might show off what stash is here as a reference for myself!

Ok, what happened to August??? (August/September goals…)

Umm, August happened already, what is going on??? Let’s have a look at what was supposed to happen…

  1. Finish Mildred’s socks. This is getting stupid now. They are also the last things (on the needles) to give other people, so double incentive to finish them!
    Umm, nope. September maybe???
  2. Sew Kita’s pillowcase together. The procrastination is wildly strong on this one…:/
    Yes!!!!!! I finally did the thing! And it can now be posted as their new place
  3. Work out what on Earth is going on with my cockatoo brae. If it is my gauge I’m going to be annoyed…
    Nope. The nope is strong on this one…I have bigger fish to fry right now. This will probably get looked at after Christmas at the rate of things at the moment…
  4. Work out which socks have the most left to do that are mindless for all the train rides (4, or 5 if you count connections as separate trains) (If I finish the Mildred socks this is totally a good enough excuse to start new socks…)
    Nope. I decided to do cross stitch Mill Hill kits, which is definitely a good thing. Now I just need to order some more…
  5. Bonus: get to the yoke of cockatoo brae, depending on what is going on with it.
    Hahahahahaha nope. See above
  6. Bonus: work out what everyone’s getting for Christmas, and if it’s crafting work out a plan of attack for them…
    Yes! So I now have revised plans for the rest of the year!

 

Ok, so we’re now 2/3 of the way through the year, and I’m throwing out my original plans for the year. Christmas somehow snuck up on me (as if it wasn’t the same time every year…). So, new goals:

  1. Crochet this elephant for my aunt. This is the only Christmas present I’m making this year (unless I decide to make something for my brother-in-law. I have no idea on what to get him. Any suggestions???)
  2. See how much of this wedding sampler I can get done. I’ve finished S, so I now have A-H,J-N, T-Z as well as the names, dates and beads. So 20 small sections, beads and backstitching. Arguably z should count as 2-4 sections, but let’s count it as one and plan on doing bits of it while technically working on other sections. 2 sections a month is probably the minimum to keep on track with this, but let’s aim for 3.
  3. Finish Mildred’s socks. (This is starting to feel a bit silly. All I have left to do is one afterthought heel… I think I’m stuck on picking the stitches up for it, and the fact that the project is at work, and knitting club doesn’t meet during the summer…so that needs to come home to get done.)

 

 

So, September goals and a plan of attack:

  1. Three sections of the wedding sampler. W, X and Y I suppose.
  2. Bring home Mildred’s socks and pick up the stitches for the heel (baby steps…as soon as I do this the rest of it will just fall into place…)
  3. Get gauge on the elephant??? IDK, I’m having a mental block on how to deal with the sampler and the elephant goals….halp???

Or should I do two bits for the wedding sampler, and two weeks on the elephant??? Advice please, peoples! Or do I just concentrate on the elephant and see if I can crochet it in a month??? (Actually, I really like that idea… Yeah, let’s go with that one)

Change of plan:

  1. Finish Mildred’s socks. Just…just do it already.
  2. Crochet all the bits of the elephant.
  3. Order Christmas stocking mill hill kits (as in, the Mill Hill kits I think people would like), and make a start on them. There’s 5, and the seagull is one of them. This is one of thse spontaneous plans which is always more trouble than it’s worth, but always just works out for me so I never learn from them…

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Ever The Crafter

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