Wednesday, 27 February 2008

Update on the Fog..................

I am making good progress. I have now used 17 balls of the rooster yarn and I am past the divide for the arms. I am currently knitting up the back of the sweater. The knitpicks have made easy work of the ribbing. Dividing for the front and back was also easy work for the knitpicks by stoppering off the cable holding the back and starting a new cable for the front. The whole switch over was effortless and was done while attending the Knitterati book group and discussing The Pearl by John Steinbeck.




Monday, 25 February 2008

My knitty stars..............

Ok in light of my recent knitting projects I found this quite amusing when opening and reading my new copy of Simply Knitting which arrived today.

Capricorn (23Dec - 19Jan)
They say cold hands mean a warm heart, but that's no excuse not to knit yourself some lovely gloves. If you've been neglecting your own needs, it's time to pamper yourself.

Interesting as I have spent the weekend knitting gloves for others! (I really enjoyed making them. I love knitting for people when I know it is going to be appreciated.) To be fair I have already knitted myself lovely gloves at the start of the year which I have worn practically everyday since.

Sunday, 24 February 2008

Handy for Andy.......................

It was Wednesday and I should have been doing some school work but you know how it is, I sat at the computer and thought I would just check out the 'Rav'. There was a message on one of the boards that read:
Help Its Cold !!!!
Gosh, what's that all about, expecting tales of snow etc.

This was the message:
Hi Ya Bit of a cheeky post I am afraid.
Its to say the least proving somewhat cold packing up orders in the barn at the moment.
Just thought I would be cheeky and ask if any one had any spare time to knit me a pair if fingerless gloves in Aran BFL ?
Would send the yarn free and include a pack of the Rooster yarn as a thank you.
Hope this isnt too cheeky of me to ask
Many thanks

Well I think the post had been there all of a minute before I gave my reply:

Go on then I will. Actually was going to contact about purchasing an extra pack of mushroom (see foggy day post) as I am having a panic about knitting carls sweater and having enough. I am one of those better safe than sorry people.
How big are your hands?

A few posts went back and forth as arrangements were made etc. On Thursday eveing Carl arrived home with a neat little package containing yarn for the gloves and my extra pack of Rooster almerino. Perfect.


I can tell you now that this yarn is as soft as it looks and has a lovely spring to it. So it was time to cast on. The following are the progress of the gloves, including a moment when I didn't think I would get the pair out of one skein. (Andy did post two just in case.)

Passed the thumb and onto the fingers.
Little finger and thumb on waste yarn waiting to go.
Glove number one finished!
By the end of Friday evening I was one glove down and one cuff up.
Slightly scary moment this morning when I still had one thumb and one little finger to go.
Little finger on DPN's.
All finished with a little yarn still to spare.


These have been knitted on 3.75mm DPNs to create quite a dense fabric to keep out the cold. I adapted a pattern from called cigar but didn't finish off all the fingers. Very pleased with how they have turned out. These are now packaged up and ready to go out in the post tomorrow. Hopefully Andy's hands will be much warmer while tackling the hugest yarn stash I have ever heard of.
By the way I have now ordered 12 skeins of this yarn in this colourway from Andy to knit a sweater so watch this space.

Friday, 22 February 2008

A foggy knit for foggy days..............................

Ok so a week or two ago I asked you what was in the Turkey shaped package. I can reveal the contents as.....


.....bags, and bags of lovely Rooster yarn from Andy (Alpacabuyer on Ravelry)from
I just couldn't resist the superb offer that he had.

  • 4 bags of Mushroom arran
  • 2 bags of Plum in DK
  • 1 bag of Pink in DK

It is just the softest 50%alpaca/50%merino blend in splendid little 25grm balls. That means 40 balls of mushroom!
The thing was now I had it what was I going to do with it?

Well with the foggy weather we have been having and after a little searching on the Ravelry pattern database I found this free pattern. I thought this would make a good mans knit for the mushroom.


So I have cast on.........



What's really lovely about this sweater is I have been able to put my knitpicks options to good use as it is knit in the round. I have only ever knit socks or hats in the round before so this is a first. The only slight hitch now is the 40 balls and with each one only doing an inch I couldn't waste a bit. Enter the new technique of spit splicing. I had heard about it, even seen it demonstrated but never tried it. I was going to have to plunge in and I am so glad I did. 40 balls and no ends to sew in. It couldn't be easier. Unravel a bit of each yarn. Overlay the strands, wet a little and then rub between the palms of the hands. It is truly amazing. I never thought it would hold but it is just fantastic.

A couple of things about this sweater. It is what you would call rib heavy. The edge is 4x2 rib and the rest of the sweater is 1x1 rib but it's fine when you get into the rhythm of it. This is a lovely yarn to work with and the knitpicks are making easy work of it. Changing needles was great as well as I only had to screw off and on a set of ends. I think I will be doing more of this in the round stuff.

Thursday, 21 February 2008

Moustachio minis and the next generation..........

Oh now that sounds more like the name of a pop band!
Ok so after lots of Moustachio revelling at the weekend.........
With this



and this............

And being set a previous challenge by ORK I decided it was time to bring this to the younger generation.


Well we had to entertain ourselves somehow as we were no longer going off on our adventure to meet the Moustachio queen for coffee, cake and knitting! Next time.

I'm a winner.................................

Ok I am a little late in posting this as I received my goodies last week but I needed to be home in daylight to photograph them to do them justice.


This was my prize for making an entry on the Kinterati blog - Londons only knitting reading group held on the last Tuesday of each month at Iknit London.

Thank you Cavefelem (aka Izzie the cat) for choosing such lovely personal prizes and gifting me with my first skein of Posh yarn. Everytime I have ever tried to buy from Dee's site someone has always gotton there before me. I know have to choose very carefully a suitable literary type project to use it for. Maybe a luxury book bag! I am also very much looking forward to reading Wise Children. I certainly felt thoroughly spoilt.

This month we are reading The Pearl by John Steinbeck, also author Of Mice and Men. (The book I had heard of.)
This is not something I would normally pick up to read so being part of the book group is challenging my usual reading habits which tend to be children's and teen fiction of and of course an abundance of Chick Lit. (We all need to let our brains go sometime.)

I haven't started reading yet but as my copy only arrived through the post from another kind member of the group who is now unable to come on Tuesday. (Knitters really are lovely people - thank you Whichit.)

Scanning the intro and blurb has been interesting and I am looking forward to sitting down with a cup of coffee and getting started. I love half term.

A little info on John Steinbeck if you like.....
Born in Salinas, California, in 1902 he grew up in an agricultural valley twenty five miles from the Pacific coast. He went to Stanford University in 1919 but never took a degree just a series of literature courses. He then worked as a labourer and journalist in New York City. He died in 1968 having won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1962

The book itself is described in the blurb as
John Steinbeck's flawless parable about wealth and the evil it can bring. When Kino, a Mexican pearl-diver finds 'the pearl of the World' he believes that his impoverished life will be magically transformed. He will marry Juana in the church and their son, Coyotito, will go to school. Obsessed by his dream, Kino is blind to greed, fear and even violence the pearl arouses in his neighbours - and in himself. Written with haunting and lyrical simplicity, The Pearl sets the values of the civilised world against those of the primitive and finds them tragically inadequate.

Right on that note I am off to do some reading. Further posts can be found at the Kniterati blogspot with opinions of the group and a summary of the discussions.

Monday, 18 February 2008

One Day in March................................

So I and a group of others have been desperately waiting to blog on this one for a while now. We no longer have to keep it a secret. For the last coulple of months there has been plotting, knitting, sewing and other related activities going on. It started with an invite from Quelle Erqusome to join the One day in March group on Ravelry. (I think it was called something else to start with but we couldn't allow it to be pulled up on searches.) Anyway Indieknits and Erquesome had hatched a wicked plan.
So this is what the group board read:

us? we're not doing anything...

group details
Fellow Socktoschemers. Our glorious leader is set to be wed in Feb 2008 and we want to throw her the best, knittiest hen party ever. But don’t let her know. It’s a secret.

Due to certain logistics, any in-person partying will be based in London, UK (location/date to be determined), but it’d be awesome if everyone joined in from wherever they are! We need all the help we can get to organise a night to remember.

We’re in the process of inviting the entire S!!ktopus board, but if we miss someone, please invite them! Don’t forget: everyone is welcome! Invite everyone in your friends list! Spread the word! Just don’t tell Alice.

IMPORTANT: PLEASE TRY NOT TO USE THE WORD ‘S!!KTOPUS’ IN YOUR POSTS! If Alice does a search on Ravelry to find customer feedback, she may stumble across this group!

For obvious reasons we did not have a banner either. We needed to remain undetectable, under the radar (now that might have been our give away on Rav if Alice is an eavesdropper!)

Anyway for those not yet on Ravelry (Why?) and are unable to read the posts and plotting on the One Day in March group we decided to make a group wedding gift of a blanket. This was to have contributions from across the country. All fellow socktopods knitting 3" x 24" strips in luxurious yarn to be sewn up at an agreed time and place. That agreed time and place was 9th Feb in the bar of the Ritzy Cinema, followed by The Old Crown pub in Holborn on the following Wednesday.




You can find more photos of our exploits here.

So after a couple of sewing up sessions, extra knitting and Dianne crocheting the edging just in time we were ready to party.

So on Saturday we all met at the Chandos somewhere in town near Leciester Square and this time I didn't need to ring Laura to come and fetch me!
Alice thought she was just going for a little drink with a couple of friends. Here's a few choice shots from the evening.




Aswell as the blanket we had to provide the obvious Hen party attire - knitted of course. Justine provided the delctable L plates in a suitable tacky acrylic. I produced the veil with knitted flowers and a knitted lace garter. I will blog separately about that as few people did ask about the pattern.

We had a really great time so a big thank you to all those who knitted and sewed strips but couldn't make it on the evening and to all those who came along and knitted and drank, Erquesome, Indieknits, Cave felem (aka Izzie the cat), Where's woolly, AnnaT, Dianne, Sharazamattaz, did I miss anyone? And of course Miss Socktopus herself.

We really did do some knitting but here is how the evening progressed.



Ok I know some of these photos are a little blurry but I really wanted to capture the authentic feel as I saw it through my eyes.

This was such a fun project to be part of and for such a wonderful person. Have a great day, a great wedding and a great married life. Hugs and Kisses from Yogicknitter xxxxxx

Two of the strips I contributed to the blanket.


Please note further posts about the Moustachios will appear later! You know who you are.

Monday, 11 February 2008

Is it Christmas again already?

Or is this just a Turkey?


An interesting package that arrived at the end of last week. But what is inside you may ask? Well I might not tell you just yet. Maybe I will photograph the contents later in the week so that you can drool to your hearts content.

It's travelled down from Chester.
It could be blue in the face.
It's squidgey.
It might be roosting somewhere else.

Worked it out yet?
No - you'll just have to wait a bit longer.

Baby baby...........

OK so I mentioned the earlier baby boom, so the past couple of weeks I have been getting myself fully prepared for the arrivals. This involved earlier knitting of hats and bootees but my next mission was for something more substantial. So while venturing up to Iknit to pick up my umbrella swift I also picked up the two sublime baby books for their baby merino cashmere silk DK. (Thats a bit of a mouthful.)I was only supposed to be getting one but I couldn't make a decision so ended up buying them both.


Don't they just look gorgeous. I was really pleased with the number of totally knittable designs in here although most jumpers / cardigans take 3 balls for the very smallest size. I guess that's why I ended up getting both in the end as I felt that it covered everything I could possibly want for a newborn. (There are a couple of girls tops that only take two 50g balls.)

Anyway baby number one arrived nearly 3 weeks ago now - shade blue and shade pink is on her way as mummy went in for her induction yesterday. So time to finally commit to the first design that I was going to knit

I decided on the Vintage Car Jacket but in blue.


I took the finished article around on Wednesday and it was very gratefully received.



I have also being knitting ahead for my new niece. I chose this design to knit for her so that I could use two balls of the RYC cashsoft that I bought at Getknitted in January.


This has also now been finished and a suitable button selected from one of my LYS.


I am really pleased with the way both the sublime and the Cashsoft knitted up and the fact that I could substitute yarns quite sucessfully on this occaision. This has not always been the case! I still haven't fully committed to swatching and I know I should. I also have to mention how I loved knitting these up on my gorgeous Lantern moon needles which you can just pick out in some of the photos. These were real luxury knits.

I would love to knit something for myself in the Sublime but I think the amount of yarn that I would need for something substantial would be very costly. I am sure it would be fantastic to wear and feel so soft next to the skin.

One interesting point though is that the baby sublime and the adult is exactly the same in yarn content with the merino, silk and cashmere it is just that the labels are different and the baby is in subtle pastel shades. The adult shades are slightly stronger in colour.

Saturday, 2 February 2008

Evidence my dear friends, evidence....................

There's a man hiding in these socks!


Finally caught wearing the socks that I knitted for him over two years ago. Ok so they were one of my earlier attempts. I would like to think it was because
a)......he loves the warm cosy feel
b)......the time spent lovingly knitting them
c).....they are a fashion statement
unfortunately I think it is likely to be
d).......there were no other clean socks left in the draw