Wednesday, 5 October 2011

WIP Wednesday 5th October 2011 and a Thank you

Welcome October - and what a few days of contrasts.  On the 1st of the month we had a BBQ and the kids were out in the paddling pool, 5 days later and I am contemplating lighting the fire this evening!

I am still working on my Lore Hoodie progress was a bit slow during the hot evenings.  I've no reached the points where I need to join the sleeves before I can progress any further with the bodice.  I will start on the sleeves tonight using the magic loop technique.  Still debating whether to go for three quarter length sleeves as per the pattern or make full length sleeves.

"No we mustn't forget
No we mustn't forget
To say a great big Thank you
We mustn't forget"

I'd also like to make this a 'THANK YOU' post.  Do you ever wonder what happens to those gifted knitted items?  Are they stuck in a cupboard forgotten about or well used and loved.  I'd like to say thank you for the knitted gifts that are loved in our house (being a knitter there are obviously no gifts languishing in a cupboard).

Our most loved knitted gift is a blanket that my friend Amy knitted for each of my girls when they were born.  They are backed with fleece so are lovely and cosy.  The girls like snuggling under them in the day and Carl and I often use them in the evening if its chilly.  They are frequently used on their beds too.  They are well travelled too coming on all long car journeys and holidays.
Josie as a newborn sleeping on her blanket

Another favourite is an unwanted blanket that I have loved.  A colleague gave me a bag of baby bits when Josie was born and when I returned them to her she said to put them in a charity shop.  I pointed out that there was a lovely hand knitted blanket in the bag but she laughed and said 'no thanks that can definitely go to the charity shop'.  It seems very sad that it wasnt appreciated by its original owner but I would like to say a big thank you to whoever the knitter was.  I have enjoyed wrapping my two up in the blanket as babies whilst trying to settle them back to sleep.  There is nothing more lovely than a baby sleeping in a pure white knitted blanket somehow it makes those long wakeful nights easier to bare.

On top of the blanket is a gorgeous cardi that was knitted by my lovely friend Janets, nan.  Unfortunately her nan is no longer here and I think it makes it extra special to wear and love the cardi and carry on her memory.  Thank you Nan.  My nutty 2 year old is wearing it today

funny face pics only today!

And my final knitted gift thank you is for the knitter of my favourite knitted top of all time.  This was one was knitted by my friend Amy's mum.  It came in a bag of hand me downs to my two and has had a huge amount of wear and compliments.  Sadly it is now too small but I am on the hunt to find the pattern on ravelry
Its the cardi that Erin on the left is wearing
xxxx THANK YOU knitters you are very much appreciated xxxx

I am off to Tamis Amis blog to see what everyone else is up to this week

Friday, 30 September 2011

FO Friday 30th Sept 2011

Good morning.  What a beautiful day.  Just been to the kids harvest festival, it was lovely.  Got a nice big sunny smile on my face :-)

Well its been a loooong time since I was able to join in a friday!  Very pleased to have 3 show offs today

The first is my crochet cardi.  I finished this during our holiday so was able to wear it on the wet and windy beach.  It is a king cole pattern, crochetted using King cole alpaca on a 4mm needle.  The pattern has sleeves but I prefer it without.

I think this one will get a lot of wear.  Really pleased with the yarn - its beautifully soft.

My next FO is a balaclava for my father in law.  He suffers with emphysema and the cold air can set off an attack.  Hopefully this will keep his airways warm.  I used a skein of malabrigo worsted and knitted on 4.5mm needles.

And the 3rd and final FO is a headband knitted for a christmas gift.  I love the colours of this one and am pleased to find I can make 2 from one ball of Noro Silk Garden.

I have a harvest festival tune going around in my head

I mustn't forget
No I mustn't forget
To say a great big thank you
I mustn't forget

It has given me an idea for my next blog post - a big thank you for all the crafted gifts that we love in our house :-)

I'm off to see what everyone else has finished this week over at  Plums Life  Natural suburbia  and  Tamis Amis blog,

Wednesday, 28 September 2011

WIP Wednesday 28th September 2011

It is a glorious autumnal day :-)

We were away last week and unfortunately it was miserable weather all week but that did however allow me plenty of time for knitting!  I've got a couple of FO for friday at last (seems ages since I was able to join in on a Friday).  My WiP is a Lore Hoodie from the Vampire knits book for me.  I decided I wanted a cheap knit which was washable so I'm using James Brett Marble Chunky.  Having serious yarn regret though as I am a yarn snob at heart and I'm really not enjoying working with acrylic.  Keep having to remind myself though that I will have a finished hoodie for 12 rather than 60pound+.  I'm using some of the modifications on ravelry and will be knitting longer sleeves and I've knitted the frontband along with the skirt to make it seamless.  I love ravelry for all the hints and tips.  This pattern is written in pieces but it can easily be a seamless knit - without ravelry I wouldnt have spotted the seamless potential.

The lace skirt is almost finished now.  Can you block acrylic?  The lace really needs blocking to open it out.  Marble chunky goes a very long way - I'm still on the 1st skein!!!

Knitting with chunky and 8mm needles has also made me realise how much I love 4ply and finer needles!!

I'll be back on friday :-)  but popping over to Tamis Amis blog now to see what everyone else is up to xx

Wednesday, 14 September 2011

Its that time again - Kids clothes week challenge :-)

Pre-warning for all you seamstresses out there.  Its Kids Clothes Week Challenge again.  Set yourself a challenge to put aside an hour a day during the week to make your kids some clothes.  I took part in the May challenge and made a dress each for my two.

I've created a pinterest board for any inspirations - looking empty at the moment but I will start filling it!

Please sign up it was great fun x

WIP Wednesday 14th September 2011

 A blustery but warm Autumn wednesday :-)

I've made good progress on my cardi this week only the sleeves and edging left to go.  I'm hoping the edging will tighten and finish it off nicely as the motif border seems a bit floppy on the bottom at the moment.  We go on holiday this friday and I was desperately hoping it would be finished in time so I could start my next project and also wear the cardi on holiday.  As it is only short sleeves there may still be time to get it finished.  Has anyone tried the no chain foundation start in crochet?  I was chatting on a crafty forum and found that I am not the only one who hates that first row in crochet.  Any pattern that requires a long foundation chain tends to get ditched as I find it so twisty and fiddly!  The cardi sleeves require a 84 stitch foundation chain so I'm going to try this method out.

The colour in this pic is closer to the actual colour.  My camera seems to pick it up as a bright blue rather than the teal that it is.

I am so excited about my next project - the Lore Hoodie from Vampire Knits.  It has been very hard to stick to just the one WIP but I know that if I start many then they never reach the end.  I havent used acrylic in ages but I'm hoping to get lots of wear out of this hoodie so a machine washable yarn appealed.  Looking forward to a week in the caravan knitting :-)


For more crafty delights head over to Tamis Amis blog

Wednesday, 7 September 2011

WIP Wednesday 7th September 2011

Welcome to a very wet and windy September!!! 

Thank you for your comments and tips last week on how to join my motifs.  I tried whipstitch and joinng with slip stitch and a single crochet.  In the end I decided that single crochet but not into every chain looked best.  With motifs joined I am going back and forth with a 2 row pattern repeat which is nice and easy to memorise.  Lesson learnt though about crochetting whilst watching a late night film as I realised in the morning I had only joined 6 of the 7 motifs!!!!  Couldnt bring myself to rip back 4 sets of repeats so sneakily worked the repeats above the 7th motif and joined with a slip stitch!!!  Thankfully it doesnt look noticeable.

I'm a bit worried by the lack of shaping until the armpits but I suppose that is what you get with crochet patterns.

Looking forward to seeing what everyone else has been up to at Tamis Amis crafting blog

Wednesday, 31 August 2011

WIP Wednesday 31st August 2011

Good morning.  I have failed to post a WiP Wednesday since the start of the summer holidays!!!  Still crafting in the evenings but the kids have discovered youtube, moshi monsters and bin weevils over the holidays so I havent been able to get on the computer very often!

Getting excited now as Autumn is really in the air now despite it still being August!  The trees are starting to turn and the evenings are getting chilly.  Lit the fire last night which was lovely.  I love all seasons but love the time of seasonal change the most.  It is also the time of year to start thinking about Christmas gifts and what to make everyone :-)

Onto my WIP.....  I need your advice.  I'm making a crochet cardi for myself from a King Cole pattern.  The bottom section is made from square motifs that are joined together.  The joining edges are created from a chain stitch row so I am not sure how to join one motif to another.  Normally with crochet I've joined firm edges together either with single crochet, whipstitch or mattress stitch.  Not sure which joining stitch to use and whether to insert the needle into the V's of the chain or go under the round and into the arches that it created on top of the previous round.  Hope I am making some sense!!!  The pattern just says join motifs in a row.

Head over to Tami's Amis blog for this weeks crafting WIP's

Monday, 29 August 2011

Carnival Time and Year of Projects 29/8/11 week 9

You can tell it is the Summer Holidays as I am way behind on my blog!!  We have had a lovely few weeks though.  This weekend was the Carnival where we have a day and night procession through town and a horticultrual and craft competition.  I put 12 entries into the competition and came away with 4 third's - not my best prize scoop but a lot of fun.

The horticultural and craft exhibitions
I entered a Fancy Filigree Bookmark made with size 10 crochet thread and a 1.5mm needle.  Didnt get a prize on this one.  I really enjoy thread crochet work and have treated myself to some more colourful threads.

Mum and Dad's 60th birthday creations and my moroccon tile afghan picked up 3rds.

Sadly I didnt scoop a prize in the bag section!

and my Year of Project show entries......

My rainbow heart doilies made with size 10 thread and a 1.5mm hook.  I will admit to being a little disappointed not to get a prize on this one but they will look great up on the wall.

And I finally finished Josie's genevieve sweater.  It used 6 skeins on superwash merino worsted dyed by Ali and Pixieknits and I got the tension with a 5.5mm needle.  Have hated this project (incorrect yardage requirements and the pattern was lacking in description) !!!! If I ever make this again then there is no way I'd make the skirt so full - all that back and forth stocking stitch drove me mad!!  Josie is chuffed to bits with it though and it picked up a 3rd at the show.

and here are a few more pics of the carnival

Take at look at the Year of Projects page on Ravelry for lots more crafty pics

Sunday, 7 August 2011

A year of projects - week 6

And what a week of crafting its been :-)  Seem to have achieved lots this week despite working on a different project each day *raises eyebrows*!  I vow to work on only one project at a time once all the current projects are finished - ha ha ha!

From my YoP list I have done lots of work on Josie's Genevieve sweater.  Ali at Pixie Knits managed to match an extra skein for me so I now have enough to finish the full length version with pixie hood.  Still fuming that the yardage requirements are so out on this pattern.  The new skein is slightly less varigated than the original skeins so I am knitting 2 rows in the old, 2 rows in the new to try and blend it as much as possible.  Only another inch of the hood to go and the remaining sleeve.  Have tried to stitch the bodice to the skirt with mattress stitch as per the pattern but I've only ever used mattress stitch on vertical knitted stitches and not the cast off row to the cast on row.  I've tried a couple of times but it looks untidy so will go up to my local knit and knatter tomorrow night to get some expert opinion on neat finishing.

Now my other projects weren't on my original list but this week I have also been working on:

A Calorimetry headband for myself.  I actually made 2 but the first one was way too big.  Originally casted on 104 stitches on 4.5mm needles and worked up until 28 unworked stitches on either side of the middle.  Second time round I only used 88 stitches and worked up until 22 unworked stitches - it fits a treat and will be perfect for those 'ooops should have washed my hair days'!  Made in the lovely Noro Silk Garden

The kids and I made a wigwam :-) thanks to inspiration from summer holidays when I was little at my grandparents and my friend Helen who has recently made one for her little girls.  Had intended to follow this tutorial for a more professional job but it was a scorching day and the kids were happy with it just held together by pegs!!

 I'm making Josie a dress with a knitted bodice and ooga booga print skirt.  The knitted section is from the Milo pattern knitted with Rico Kids DK
After sitting on top of my wardrobe for a couple of months I decided it was time to tackle curtain making for the first time!  Unfortunately I brought the material on a whim before learning how to correctly measure up to include seam allowances and pattern repeats.  I was short of material for both our bedroom curtains and Josie's!!!  Thankfully Dunelm's still had the material in stock for our bedroom.  Very proud with my work so far.  I shall make a blog tutorial for 'curtain making for newbies'!
 And last but not least!!!  There are lots of tutorials in both the blog world and on youtube for pillowcase dresses.  Spotted some cheap cases on ebay and started on my own version with a bit of smocking!  It is slightly too wide for Josie so thought it might fit my sister as a top.  Sadly it is too narrow for my sister but now I have the correct measurements my next sewing project will be a grown up sized smock top and I shall rethink the design on the pillowcase dress.

I am off now to have a look at what everyone else has been up to this week over at the YoP blog-a-long