Monday, November 26, 2007

wanting new stuff

Sometimes I think the whole online knitting community is all about making you want stuff. New things to knit, new yarns to knit with or fondle, new techniques to try out. Perhaps.

Whatever your views on knitting as a consumer activity, it is true that I do want to knit something new. I have several projects on the needles in various stages of done-ness. Ivy needs half a tie and a neckband (and probably a good blocking). One Eleanora sock is halfway along the foot. One entrelac sock (inspired by domesticat's version, but in sock yarn oddments, so even more colourful. Possibly too colourful.) is nearly at the heel. One Bottoms-up top awaits sleeves and a yoke. I am in need of jumpers because it is cold. Once today's presentation (which is supposed to be consuming all my energies today) is out of the way, I will finish Ivy and then either do the maths and start on sleeves, or unravel an old and enormous jumper made from Colinette Point 5 and see how quickly I can turn it into a top-down raglan v-neck.

Sunday, October 21, 2007


I have been knitting. I finished a pair of socks (Roza's socks, toe-up version) and the Bulky mini cardigan from Fitted Knits. I restarted Ivy in the beautiful navy cashmere yarn I've been trying to find a pattern to suit for ages and started a pair of Eleanora's socks for me.

And I haven't blogged about any of it because I am camera-less. A solution must be found.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

come and find me

I'm on Ravelry, as of yesterday.
I'm pigwotknits. Not much of my stuff on there yet, but there will be.

ETA: Of course, my invite arrived just as I've left work (well almost, my official last day is Thursday) and given back the digital camera I've been borrowing. I'm a bit stuck for pictures until I buy or borrow another one, or convince my phone to talk to this computer.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

one for me, one for Piglet

ribbed jumper for me
ribbed jumper for me, originally uploaded by the pig wot flies.

I've been knitting Bottoms Up from issue 1 of Yarn Forward for a while, it's 4ply so it's going rather slowly. I like it and it fits well, but I'm using Rowan 4ply soft which is Merino and rather warm, so I'm thinking that rather than following the pattern, I'm going to do my own thing and make it a long-sleeved v-neck jumper. I think I'd wear that more often than a short-sleeved top in very warm wool. My plan is to knit the arms next (using the same ribbing pattern) and then put it all on a longer circular needle and knit the yoke, with decreases up the front to make a v-neck. I want the vertical ribs to narrow towards the neck but I also want the front 2 central ribs to divide and continue all the way along the side of the V. Makes sense to me anyway. I thought I'd try it out on a Piglet-sized jumper first, so here he is.

Started: 7 September 2007 Finished:9 September 2007

Pattern: Made it up

Yarn: Oddments of purple 4ply left over from Arisaig

Needles: 2.5mm circs

I must admit it doesn't fit very well, but it helped me work out what I wanted to do.

Monday, September 03, 2007

back to school vest FO

back to school vest, originally uploaded by the pig wot flies.

Started: July 2007

Finished: 2 September 2007

Pattern: Back to School U-neck vest from Fitted Knits by Stefanie Japel

Yarn: 300g Troon Tweed from Texere in Purple multi fleck. This is an oiled yarn, so needed a good wash once it was done. It still smells a little oily, so I might give it another wash.

Needles: 4.5mm and 4mm circs.

Modifications: Made the ribbing longer, made the neck line a little lower, added a couple of inches before the arm holes begin, put a little shaping at the shoulders and did a 3-needle cast-off instead of a seam.

I love the fit. It's a little warm to wear at the moment, but I think once it gets colder, I'll wear it a lot. Lots of the knitting was done on holiday in Cornwall, so there are some good memories knitted in. Plus I am going 'back to school' in a sense this month. I'm going to be a student again, doing an MA course in English. Hooray!

back to school vest closeup
back to school vest closeup, originally uploaded by the pig wot flies.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

update needed

Hello there! I've been away on holiday. Looking around here, there's some updating needed. My list of work in progress is hopelessly out of date, the FO list needs some updating too. I've got one almost FO and a WiP at the point of deciding what it's going to be (short sleeve top as written or long sleeve top which would involve buying more yarn and making up the pattern, but which would probably be more useful), neither of which have really been blogged so far.

Pics and thoughts soon. Perhaps.

Friday, August 10, 2007

socks done!

The sockapalooza socks are finished and currently drying off after a wash. I'll try to post a picture before I send them on their way and then take myself off on holiday for a couple of weeks.

ETA: Photographic evidence.

See ya!

Monday, August 06, 2007

sockapalooza arrival

sockapalooza, originally uploaded by the pig wot flies.

My sockapalooza socks arrived. Thank you Carol!
Here you can see pretty pretty socks in gorgeous pinky purpley merino wool, yummy jelly beans, a beautiful card which matches everything perfectly and a sock monkey sock project bag (which is currently home to the sockpal socks I'm still working on).

Thank you Carol, they're beautiful socks and sooo soft and squishy.

Right, must get a move on and finish mine.

ETA: I'll do a modelled photo when it's not too hot to wear wool socks.

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

sockapalooza oh dear

sockapalooza sock, originally uploaded by the pig wot flies.

This was the state of my sockapalooza socks this morning. I knew I was cutting it fine, but I think I overestimated how much knitting I could get done while running around managing a conference.

Sorry sockpal, they're going to be late.

The yarn is Foxglove from Fyberspates, the pattern is based on Adrian's Cable Twist socks but with different sized twisting columns (3, 4 and 5 stitches rather than all 5s) and alternating directions. I like how they look. I'm a little worried that the stitch pattern is eating yarn and I'll run out, but we'll cross that bridge when we come to it. The conference finishes tomorrow and then I'll knit as fast as I can so I get these posted off before I go on holiday.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

ready, steady, socks!

foxglove yarn, originally uploaded by the pig wot flies.

My sockapalooza yarn is here at last. The first skein I ordered from Fyberspates seems to have been eaten by the Post Office, so I emailed the lovely Jeni and she sent me a new one which arrived next day.

I wound it into a centre pull ball almost immediately and began a Marigold. It's pooling a bit and I haven't got far enough to decide whether it's pooling in a way I like or not. But I've begun, at least.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

one roza

one roza, originally uploaded by the pig wot flies.

Proving that slow and steady gets there eventually.

Cast on date: 9 May 2007
Cast off date: 9 July 2007

I wonder how long the second one will take me?

And then there's the continued non-appearance of my yarn for sockapalooza. I wanted to have the socks done by 20 July since I will be busy at a work conference from then until the beginning of August. No yarn so far, not much time to knit and an essay to write, also by 20 July. Hmm. Sock pal, I think your socks may be a little late arriving.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

slow sock

slow sock, originally uploaded by the pig wot flies.

I'm still knitting, a bit. This is still my first Roza's sock, which is growing slowly, but steadily.

I really must start my sockapalooza socks soon. I've got a pattern in mind, I just need the yarn to arrive.

Saturday, June 09, 2007

purple stuff

aka startitis or things I meant to blog about but never did.

I think it's obvious what my favourite colour is, don't you? Here we have various projects. From the top centre, a swatch for the Back to School U-neck vest from Fitted Knits by Stephanie Japel (recent acquisition, love it!), going clockwise, a small amount of sleeve for a cardigan based on the Treeline striped cardigan from Purl bee, a feather and fan comfort shawl in various oddments, and quite a bit of Bottoms Up, a top from the first issue of Yarn Forward. The last of these is what I'm knitting on most at the moment. It's in 4ply, Rowan 4 ply soft to be precise, and so is a slow grower. I'm not letting myself start the vest until at least one of these is finished.

I'm not sure whether I like the cardigan or not. I like the design and these colours, a dark purple and a lighter lilac, but the yarn is rather scrunchy superwash wool. Still, the first ever cardigan I made was in very squeaky acrylic in day-glo muppet colours and I wore that quite a lot. Still would if it wasn't now ridiculously loose. I expect I'll persevere, cardigans are useful. Plus there's loads of both those yarns sitting in a plastic bag under my desk and it's a good way to use them up.

I do like the top. I think it might be autumn before it's the right sort of temperature to wear it, though with the random weather we've been having lately, who knows. Cotton would be the obvious choice, but I had 4 balls of 4ply soft sitting around (an eBay aquisition), so bought 2 more to go with them and began (different dye-lot of course, so I'm alternating old and new).

This pic makes the shawl look like a big purple mess. It's nicer in person, honest. I seem to have got a bit obsessed with shawls. This is my third this year.

What else am I up to? The Shetland shawl needs an FO post. My first Roza's sock is still slow. I need to start my sockapalooza socks, once I've decided what I'm making.

I was supposed to be knitting less this year. So far, I'm not convinced I am. Ah well.

Friday, June 01, 2007

Shetland triangle 2 blocking

She's blocking, at last.


kimono, originally uploaded by the pig wot flies.

This was what I spent most of last Saturday making. I wanted a summer dressing gown and this fits the bill perfectly.

The fabric is a cheap (4m for £4.40) poly-cotton (probably) from the Textile Centre on Walthamstow market. I used a kosode/kimono pattern I came across online. You can't really tell, but the sleeves are sewn together under the armhole for those classic dangly sleeves. I did French seams everywhere, which took ages, but was worth it for a neat finish. The belt's just a long skinny rectangle. This was a fun pattern, because you just start with a series of rectangles, sew them together, do a little folding and cutting and there you go. Sort of. It took about 6 hours. Anyway, I like the result.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Roza's sock in progress

Roza's sock in progress, originally uploaded by the pig wot flies.

To prove I'm still knitting, here's progress. I'm 2/3 up the heel flap on my toe-up Roza. So far, it fits perfectly. Look at that line of increases. I was reading somewhere about putting guesset increases or decreases in places other than all in a line beside the instep stitches, so thought I'd give it a go. I wonder if makes much difference to the fit? Probably not since it doesn't alter the direction the stitches are lying in. This has become my at work lunchtime knitting, so it's going to be slow.

The Shetland shawl from the last post is finished and awaits blocking. I was going to block it on Sunday night, except we were supposed to be having some small visitors coming for breakfast on Monday (the children of friends of my housemate) so pinning things to the living room floor didn't seem a very sensible idea. In the end, my housemate was ill and small visitors came there none. Still didn't get round to blocking. Maybe tomorrow night.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

sock and triangle

sort of Roza's sock, originally uploaded by the pig wot flies.

See, proper content.

This is my take on Roza's socks from Interweave Knits Spring 06 (by the infamous Grumperina). I switched it to toe-up, just because and increased the stitch count to fit my large feet. It'll probably have a flap heel. I've never tried Brioche stitch before, I rather like it.

another Shetland triangle
another Shetland triangle, originally uploaded by the pig wot flies.

This is another Shetland Triangle, rather smaller than the last one. It's in the small ball (40g) of 4-ply hand-dyed Shetland wool I bought from Shilasdair on Skye last summer. I think I'll have to find something to go with it to make it a decent size. We'll see. It's going pretty quickly so far. I began on Saturday afternoon, knitted through Eurovision and then did a couple more repeats on Sunday afternoon. Lace knitting in the warm, when it's pouring with rain outside. Bliss!

Monday, May 14, 2007

what have you knit?

I have knitting to show, but I haven't taken any photos of it yet, so here's a meme to amuse you. Found here and here and probably all over the place.

Bold for stuff you’ve done, italics for stuff you plan to do one day, and normal for stuff you’re not planning on doing.

Afghan/Blanket (baby)
Garter stitch
Knitting with metal wire
Stockinette stitch
Socks: top-down
Socks: toe-up
Knitting with camel yarn
Mittens: Cuff-up
Mittens: Tip-down
Knitting with silk
Moebius band knitting
Participating in a KAL
Drop stitch patterns
Knitting with recycled/secondhand yarn
Slip stitch patterns
Knitting with banana fiber yarn
Domino knitting (modular knitting)
Twisted stitch patterns
Knitting with bamboo yarn
Two end knitting
Charity knitting
Knitting with soy yarn
Toy/doll clothing
Knitting with circular needles
Knitting with your own handspun yarn
Graffiti knitting (knitting items on, or to be left on the street)
Continental knitting
Designing knitted garments
Cable stitch patterns (incl. Aran)
Lace patterns
Publishing a knitting book
Teaching a child to knit
American/English knitting (as opposed to continental)
Knitting to make money
Button holes
Knitting with alpaca
Fair Isle knitting
Norwegian knitting
Dying with plant colors

Knitting items for a wedding
Household items (dishcloths, washcloths, tea cozies…)
Knitting socks (or other small tubular items) on two circulars
Olympic knitting
Knitting with someone else’s handspun yarn
Knitting with DPNs
Holiday related knitting
Teaching a male how to knit
Knitting for a living
Knitting with cotton
Knitting smocking
Dying yarn
Knitting art
Knitting with wool
Textured knitting
Kitchener BO
Knitting with beads
Long Tail CO (i've been knitting for years and I STILL don't know how to do this.)
Knitting and purling backwards
Machine knitting
Knitting with self-patterning/self-striping/variegating yarn
Stuffed toys
Baby items

Knitting with cashmere

Knitting with synthetic yarn
Writing a pattern
Knitting with linen
Knitting for preemies
Tubular CO
Freeform knitting
Short rows
Cuffs/fingerless mitts/arm warmers

Knitting a pattern from an online knitting magazine
Knitting on a loom
Thrummed knitting
Knitting a gift
Knitting for pets
Knitting with dog/cat hair
Hair accessories
Knitting in public


Does anyone know why the months on my blog archive are now appearing in Spanish (I think, it's not a language I speak, whatever it is)? I'm not averse to multi-lingual blogging, but I didn't do it on purpose and having checked all my settings, I can't work out why it's happening or change it back. Perhaps it'll disappear as mysteriously as it appeared.

ETA: Yep, it disppeared as soon as I posted this. Most odd.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

bayerische cuff

bayerische cuff, originally uploaded by the pig wot flies.

This is far as it got. The colour's completely off (it's Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock in 'Berry' and it's a darker purple). I like the pattern, but it's not big enough to get over my ankle. Going up another needle size might fix it, might not. I'm not completely sure about the colour. The cables would probably pop better in something lighter. I've ripped it out and the yarn is waiting for me to decide what to do. I might try Cookie A's Twisted Flower socks.

In the meantime I've started Rosa's socks from Interweave Knits Spring 07. Except they're toe-up and over more stitches. Funny, the Bayerische socks were actually a rare case of my following the pattern as written. Nothing wrong with the pattern, in that case, just the size of my feet.

Monday, April 30, 2007

spring socks done

spring socks done, originally uploaded by the pig wot flies.

Finished and enjoying the spring sunshine.

Started: 6 April 2007

Finished: 26 April 2007

Pattern: Elfine's Socks by Anna Bell

Yarn: Curious Yarns sock yarn in Sprung

Needles: 2.5mm circs. I used magic loop for most of it and 2 circulars for the heel.

Modifications: After making my first pair of Elfines for my sock pal last year, I decided I'd need to make them bigger to fit me. I increased the number of stitches to 68, leaving the lace pattern unchanged, but adding an extra knit stitch. On the legs, this means the purl column at either side becomes purl, knit, purl. I also did an toe-up flap heel. They're actually a little baggy at the heel now, so perhaps just one of those changes would have been enough.

spring socks heel

Friday, April 13, 2007

spring sock

Elfine's socks* by Anna Bell, Curious Yarns sock yarn in Sprung. Perfect for seaonal socks. Funny how some socks take forever and others just fly off the needles. I started this one a week ago and finished it on Wednesday night. Sock 2 is already growing.

I was going to give this sock an outdoor photoshoot in the garden, but yesterday's sunshine has disappeared, to be replaced with grey mist. Instead, here are a snake, a horse and a sheep from a string of animals representing the Chinese calendar.

*I wonder what socks Elfine would wear after Flora Post takes her in hand and transforms her from a wild marshticket to an elegant maiden? Fine silk stockings perhaps, with a secret border of leaves and sukebind.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007


tangle, originally uploaded by the pig wot flies.

I've got myself into a lovely tangle winding this skein of laceweight silk. It's pretty big, about 2000m and it's taking a long time to wind by hand. I don't have a swift, so I started with the skein round my knees and then moved it onto a chair. I'm winding onto a kitchen roll tube and my first attempt (you can just see it down in the right hand corner) was a bit loose, so now I'm winding from the other end. It's going to take a while, but it's getting there.

reorganisation and joining in

I've been reorganising my blogs. They still look a bit cluttered, but there's more space to write in. Let me know if there's anything that looks odd.

The sign-ups are open for
They have been for a while, so if you haven't signed up yet, go now!

Saturday, April 07, 2007

FYI Walthamstow knitters

The Scope shop on Walthamstow High Street has lots of knitting needles for £1.50 a set, including lots of dpns in various sizes (Inox and Addi) and some Addi Turbos (a few, mostly 50cm).

Thursday, April 05, 2007

finished lovemeknots

At last!

Started: 10 August 2006

Finished: 4 April 2007

Yarn: Cygnet wool-rich 4 ply. Most of 1 ball of black, 2/3 ball cream

Needles: 2.5mm circs (magic loop) and dpns (for heel)

Notes: I had a serious case of second sock syndrome with these socks. I love the result, but I don't like the process of shadow knitting. I think it's the ratio between having to pay attention (rows with knits and purls) and just plodding on (plain knit rows). There's not quite enough of either. Anyway, they're done and I'm wearing them today and amusing myself by wiggling my feet to make the hearts appear and disappear. Nice pattern Alice!

Ooh, go and look at Alice's cat socks from her winning entry to the Purlescence story competition.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

felted Bible case

felted, originally uploaded by the pig wot flies.

Finished, except for a closure.

Started: 19 March 2007

Finished: 25 March/1 April (knitting/felting)

Yarn: Hand-dyed Shetland X merino blended with mohair, bought in Ardvasar on the isle of Skye on holiday last year.

Needles: 4mm circulars

Pattern: make a swatch, felt it, measure it, calculate numbers to fit, knit, felt.

Notes: The yarn doesn't felt (OK, full, technically) as completely as some others, you can still see some stitch definition. But the fabric it makes is firm enough for my purposes and the mohair fluffs up nicely. At some point I'll add a button, or poppers, or a ribbon to keep it closed.

Monday, April 02, 2007


prefelting, originally uploaded by the pig wot flies.

Work in progress. I sent this through the washing machine last night and it's currently drying. Here's a prefelting pic so you can see how it shrinks.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007


ester front, originally uploaded by the pig wot flies.

I finished Ester.

Started: 8 March 2007

Finished: 18 March 2007, (just in time for Mansfield Park on ITV).

Pattern: Ester by Alice.

Yarn: 5 or 6 balls (I lost count) of cream coloured aran wool, unlabelled.

Needles: 4.5mm circulars

A very quick knit, simple shape, the cable pattern keeps it interesting.

Edited to add: I made the M size and blocked it to the schematic measurements. I'm actually in between the M and L sizes, so it looks a little small on me. If you're knitting this, decide whether you want to be able to fasten in front as in the pattern photo, in which case you might want to add some ease. The bust sizes given seem to be the size of the finished garment, rather than the size of the wearer.

Here's a back view.

ester back

Wednesday, March 14, 2007


swatching, originally uploaded by the pig wot flies.

This is what I've been doing with banana yarn and cotton. The swatch on the right is just banana yarn. I started with plain stocking stitch and then tried out some seed stitch and some bobbles. It's nice and shiny and gets softer when washed, but I'm not too sure what to do with it on its own and I've only got 200g. My first idea was a bag, specifically Coco from Magknits, but trying out the lattice pattern made it clear the yarn's just not smooth enough for the cables to show clearly.

Then I remembered the purple cotton I used last year to make a spring/summer cardigan (not worn much and now too loose since I've lost weight). So I experimented with putting the two yarns together. Holding them together gives just a little bit of shiny silk sparkle and adds weight. The bobbles were done with just the banana yarn. I like the effect, it would make a good sleeve border. Possibly not round the bottom of a cardigan though. I also tried some split stitch, as used in Revolution, although I hadn't quite thought about the maths and ended up with more stitches than I started with. I like the effect, when I get it just right, but getting it right is a fiddle.

I'm still not sure what this is going to be. A cardigan would be useful.

Monday, March 12, 2007

train knitting

loveme knot in progress, originally uploaded by the pig wot flies.

I've had a lovely weekend in Exeter and as, I thought, got lots of knitting done on the train. On the way into London, the small girl sitting next to me was fascinated by the hearts on my lovemeknot socks. She played with the finished one for a bit, making the hearts appear and disappear and made me show her how you make stitches and how you knit round in circles.

I like the way knitting is a conversation starter. On the way home I was knitting the heel (short rowed) and the man sitting next to me was interested in why I was knitting with only 2 needles when he thought socks needed 3.

Ester detail
Ester detail, originally uploaded by the pig wot flies.

Also growing is Ester. I've done the back and I'm one repeat into the front. It's an easy pattern to memorise, so this will be my tv knitting for a bit.

Friday, March 09, 2007

new knitty, new knitting

I did cast on the second lovemeknot sock and I've started on Ester, which you'll notice are both by Alice. There's something friendly about knitting objects designed by someone you've met and she writes such intriguing patterns. Ester is simple, but a clever shape. I'm about 2/3 up the back already, using some of the huge bag of creamy aran wool I got my Grandma's stash.

Other things I'd like to knit:

Carolyn. It's a cute cardigan, I like the stripiness. I'm thinking of charcoal grey and lilac stripes.

Isabella. Such a pretty spring top. Lilac or a pretty pink mercerised cotton.

Queen of Cups, Clessidra: I love a good sock pattern. I've never knit knee-high socks, but the pretty cables up the back of Clessidra would be fun to try.

So many things I'd like to make! Progress pics on Monday, after lots of train knitting time.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

no knitty no knitting

I have nothing on the needles at present (with the exception of the long-running garter stitch shawl). I'm not going to start anything new until I've knitted that long-awaited second lovemeknot sock. I'm going away for the weekend, so I've got a couple of long train journeys in which to knit, so I should make a good start on it.

I've been playing around with banana yarn and cotton. The Time Traveller cardigan I made last year is now too big, so I'm thinking of ripping it out and making something new. Hopefully the soft cotton won't fall apart too much. I'm thinking either another cardigan, or a v-neck sleeveless jumper, using the banana yarn to make interesting edgings.

It's nearly new Knitty time, which is always fun, but there's no sign of it yet. Ho hum. Patience.

Edited to add: It's up! Hoorah!

Monday, March 05, 2007

another Clapotis

another Clapotis, originally uploaded by the pig wot flies.

And another FO. I wasn't feeling well over the weekend, so spent lots of time knitting.

Started: 2 February 2007

Finished: 4 March 2007

Pattern: The ubiquitous Clapotis

Yarn: 300g of Scrumptious from Fyberspates

Needles: 5mm bamboo straights

Modifications: Twisting the stitches on purl and knit sides. (The stitches you knit through the back loop on the right side get purled through the back loop on the wrong side). This makes the edge next to the ladders even neater. I didn't bother with stitch markers since it was easy to see which stitch was which.

Clapotis is boring to knit: even dropping stitches becomes less exciting by the end, but the result is worth it.

I'm not wearing a hat, that's my dressing gown. Must remember to think about the background I'm standing against.

monkey monkey

monkey monkey, originally uploaded by the pig wot flies.

Another Monday, another finished knit.

Started: 20 January 2007

Finished: 2 March 2007

Pattern: Monkey from Knitty

Yarn: Sloe from Curious Yarns who are still offline.

Needles: 2.5mm circulars and dpns

Modifications: Modified the stitch pattern to be 18 stitches wide over 13 rows. Eye of Partridge heel.

monkey heels

Notes: A fun knit, went quite quickly once I'd got the sizing right. The gusset decreases are very messy, I think I forgot how to count. There are 5 pattern repeats on the leg, 6 on the foot. If I knit these again I'd make the leg at least one repeat longer. The colour is brighter and more purple in real life.

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

since you asked so nicely

Thank you for all the lovely comments. By request, here's the shetland triangle in action. From a weird angle. Must invest in a tripod, methinks.

As a bonus, here's a close-up of the brooch I'm wearing to keep the shawl closed. It belonged to my Grandma. At Christmas she decided she wanted to give away her jewellery to her granddaughters (there are 6 of us) while she's still alive to appreciate the giving. This was one of my picks from her box.

shetland triangle brooch closeup

Monday, February 26, 2007

shetland triangle finished

She's done and she's gorgeous, so there's a Shetland Triangle photoset on Flickr.

Started: 21 January 2007

Finished: 23/25 February 2007 (knitting/blocking)

Pattern: Shetland Triangle from Wrap Style

Yarn: Handspun kid mohair from Teo's Handspun, bought on holiday on Skye last summer.

Needles: 5mm circulars

Modifications: 11 repeats, bigger needles.

Notes: Love it! I wanted to get the biggest shawl I could out of the yarn I had. I have a smallish ball left over, not enough for another repeat. I did go for a wet block in the end, despite my trepidation and I'm glad I did. There was a variation in colour between the three skeins of yarn. It's not noticable between the first and second skeins, but the last skein was much lighter, giving it a lighter border. Unplanned, but I like the effect. The finished size is 72" tip to tip, 32" neck to back point. It feels like the perfect size, big enough to wrap around but not so it's trailing miles down my back. Being mohair, it's very warm, it would be perfect for an outdoor evening event. All I need now is an excuse to wear it!

Friday, February 23, 2007

breaking radio silence

Wow, it's been a while. No pictures to show you, just the promise of them. The Shetland Triangle is 2 rows and a good blocking from completion. Clapotis chugs along slowly, as does the second monkey sock.

It's been a very busy week. Tonight is my first night off - I don't have to be anywhere, I don't have to write an essay, I can just relax. I plan to spend the evening on the settee with my knitting and Pride and Prejudice. Lovely!

Thursday, February 15, 2007

acquisitions and beginnings

Look what arrived in the post yesterday! Lovely yarn from the HipKnits sale. The purple stuff is banana yarn. It's a bit like silk, but heavier and scrunchier. I love the shine on it. I think this might end up being a small bag. The pink is laceweight silk. I've never had any proper laceweight to play with before! I think there's 2000m in that skein. I'll have to think what to make. Probably a shawl, something butterfly-ish. Any suggestions?

Hmm, it's pretty obvious today what my favourite colours are. This is the beginning of another Clapotis in Scrumptious from Fyberspates. Love this yarn! It's a wool/silk blend and really lives up to its name. It's squishy and soft with just enough springiness for the sculptural qualities of the pattern to come out. I've just started the straight sections on this, so it'll be a while. But I want to finish it while it's still cold enough to need it, so I'd better get cracking.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

fluffy sheep ate my hands

I made wrist warmers. It's COLD here in Cambridge and I've been thinking for a while I need something to fill the gap between my gloves and my coat. Yesterday was very cold and I happened to come across the right pattern and remember I had some yarn that would suit it. Then I knit these in bed last night. (I did make 2, but you try taking a picture of both your own hands.)

Started: 11pm 6 February 2007

Finished: 12.30am 7 February 2007

Pattern: Chance by Pixeldiva from Magknits

Yarn: 2 balls of Rowan Big Wool Tuft I acquired in a stash swap a while ago and hadn't a clue what to do with.

Needles: 15mm circulars

Notes: Dead easy and very quick. The pattern's more of a recipe, which suits me. They do look rather like I've got sheep wrapped round my hands, but they do the job of keeping my wrists warm. I turned them purl side out so that the fluffy bits stick out. They might be even warmer knit side out, with all the fluffy bits on the inside like thrummed mittens.

Handy tip: I couldn't find a big enough bodkin to sew the ends in with, so I improvised with a hair slide.

Friday, February 02, 2007

A silent poetry reading

I found this on Mary's blog.

WHAT: A Bloggers' (Silent) Poetry Reading
WHEN: Anytime February 2, 2007
WHERE: Your blog
WHY: To celebrate the Feast of Bridgid, aka Groundhog Day
HOW: Select a poem you like - by a favorite poet or one of your own - to post February 2nd.
RSVP: If you plan to publish, feel free to leave a comment and link on this post. Last year Reya put out the call and there was more poetry in cyberspace than she could keep track of. So, link to whomever you hear about this from and a mighty web of poetry will be spun.

The Loch Ness Monster's Song by Edwin Morgan

Hnwhuffl hhnnwfl hnfl hfl?
Gdroblboblhobngbl gbl gl g g g g glbgl.
Drublhaflablhaflubhafgabhaflhafl fl fl -
gm grawwwww grf grawf awfgm graw gm.
Hovoplodok - doplodovok - plovodokot - doplodokosh?
Splgraw fok fok splgrafhatchgabrlgabrl fok splfok!
Zgra kra gka fok!
Grof grawff gahf?
Gombl mbl bl -
blm plm,
blm plm,
blm plm,

There's a poem on pigwotflies too.

Monday, January 29, 2007

monkeys and mountains

Morning. I present, one finished monkey sock. I'm quite pleased with it. It's gone quickly, with the help of a long evening's worth of knitting on Saturday night. Modifying the stitch pattern worked well. It's possibly a little short, but I think with blocking and a little wear, it'll be fine.

And here are the mountains.

That's the wrong side of the shetland triangle, forming pleasing little corrugations, like an egg box or very neat mountains. I've done 5 or 6 repeats, (I've lost track, but I'm just going to make it as big as I can, so I'm not too worried) and I've not reached the end of my first hank yet. Sometimes I worry it's still too dense, but stretched out, it looks OK. How should I block it? The yarn's not very tightly spun and mohair's weaker when wet, so I'm thinking I'll pin and spray rather than wet block. Any tips?

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

finished forecast

It's been defying photography, but it's done. Complete with 294 bobbles and 196 cable crosses. And I love it!

Started: 20 April 2006

Finished: 19 January 2007

Pattern: Forecast

Yarn: 6 and a bit 100g balls of Rowanspun aran in Heath from Cucumberpatch.

Needles: 5mm and 4.5mm circulars.

Modifications: Not that many really. I did 5 stitch bobbles and the short cuffs as written. I missed out some of the raglan increases on the sleeve side to make the arms less enormous and then decreased again from 64 to 40 stitches before doing the cuffs. I extended the ribbing at the bottom. I did try adding short rows to the bust, but soon ripped it out again because it looked silly and wasn't needed because the garter stitch part is stretchy enough.

Cross-posted on the Forecast knitalong.

Monday, January 22, 2007

beginnings and false starts

Forecast is finished and lovely and I've been wearing it all weekend, but haven't yet got a decent photo. I'll have another go. Instead, here's the monkey sock I started on Saturday.

I made good progress at the knit together on Saturday, it was looking good, the stitch pattern's gorgeous, I love the colours of the yarn (Sloe from Curious Yarns, who are still offline, I hope they're not gone forever). But, it doesn't fit. It took me this far to admit that actually I can't get my foot into it. So, bye bye sock. I'm going to start it again, over 72 stitches with a modified stitch pattern. (There are two obvious places to add stitches to turn the lace pattern into a 18 stitch, 13 row repeat.) But rather than go straight onto that, I started this.

It's the Shetland Triangle from Wrap Style (thanks to Lyndsey-Jane) in luscious but apparently unphotographable handpsun kid mohair. The yarn is very variable, laceweight thin in some spots, thick dk in others. I played around with a couple of needle sizes. 5mm seems to be big enough so that the details don't get lost, but not so big that the yarnovers become enormous. Of course, right now it just looks like a big purple lump, but I'm confident blocking will open it up.

Friday, January 19, 2007

itchy fingers

I've almost finished Forecast. Knitting was finished on Wednesday, she just needs buttons. I want to get her finished to wear to the Cambridge knit-together tomorrow. FO pictures on Monday.

So for once, I've got nothing on the needles and I'm itching to start something new. That something should probably be the mate for my poor neglected single lovemeknot sock.

lovemeknot sock

Except last night I wound some other sock wool into a ball ready for knitting. And earlier this week I ordered some gorgeous yarn to make another Clapotis. get the picture.

Let's see what the weekend brings.

Monday, January 15, 2007

what to knit when you're shrinking

You won't have noticed yet, but I'm losing weight. Inspired by my incredible shrinking sister, I'm going on a diet.

So, what shall I knit? There doesn't seem much point in knitting something that may not fit me in a few months time, but I don't know how my body's going to change so there's not much point in trying to guess and knit something in a smaller size. The next few things I'd mentally lined up to knit were the Sunrise Circle Jacket and a v-neck jumper (long running saga of the navy lambswool-cashmere) but now, I think they're going on the back burner.

The solution, I suspect, is socks and shawls. I shall finish Forecast (which is designed to fit very snuggly, so shouldn't look silly if I get smaller) and then think lace projects. The first thing I'd like to make is something with this gorgeous mohair from Skye. It's not laceweight, it's more like a light dk (worsted) weight, with thinner and thicker bits. But I'd like it to be something airy, lacey, a pattern with movement to it, more organic than geometrical. Any ideas where to look for inspiration? I've been looking at the 1st and 2nd Books of Modern Lace Knitting (another acquisition from my Grandma. The patterns are mostly square (table cloths) or circular (doilys and circular table cloths) but there might be something I could adapt to a triangular shawl. Yarn Harlot Stephanie did. I think that's the shape I'd like. Although I'm not totally against the idea of a stole-type wrap. Your thoughts?

first FO of 2007

I've got a new hat. Hoorah!

Started: 3 January 2007

Finished: 14 January 2007

Pattern: Shedir from the Knitty Breast Cancer special edition. (pdf from here)

Yarn: 1 and a bit balls of Rowan Calmer in a gorgeous purple colour that seems to be new, since I can't find it online anywhere.

Needles: 3.25mm circulars (UK size 10s, a new acquisition from my Grandma's knitting treasure trove. I must show you all the things she gave me.)

Modifications: 2 extra repeats of the straight section so it keeps my ears warm. Actually it's a little bit too deep and tends to poke up above my head as you can see here. But I'd rather that than cold ears.

I think of this as my SeaChange hat since most of it was knitted in front of the tv watching SeaChange with my housemates. (It's an Australian drama series about a small coastal town. We're borrowing it on video from a friend.)

Monday, January 08, 2007

last Christmas FO

I think these are my favourite of this bunch. My mum's name is Eleanor, so she had to have some of these.

Started: November 2006

Finished: December 2006

Pattern: Eleanora Socks by Miriam Felton

Yarn: Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock in Cranberry

Needles: 2.5mm dpns and circulars

Modifications: I substituted an eye-of-partridge heel because I thought it complemented the leg pattern.

Notes: I loved knitting these. The pattern is very well-written, with very clear charts. The yarn is gorgeous, smooth and silky, just enough variation in colour to make it interesting without detracting from the stitch pattern (colour not quite right in either photo. Probably nearest in the bottom one, but a bit washed out). I love the diamonds at the top, and the way the toe decreases are written to maintain the pattern. (see below) I loved knitting something with a historical connection. I think I might knit another pair for myself sometime.

comfy cashmere Christmas socks

More socks, this time for my sister Debs.

Started: 2 December 2006

Finished: 6? December 2006

Pattern: Toe-up, 64 stitches, spiralling slip-stitch pattern inspired by Ysolda (my version slips every 8th stitch every other round, shifting along by 2 stitches each time), short row heel (over 38 stitches, short rowed down to 12 stitches), 2x2 rib, sewn cast-off.

Yarn: HipKnits cashmere sock yarn.

Needles: 2.5mm circulars and dpns.

Notes: I love the softness of cashmere sock yarn! This was a cashmere club skein, or rather two. When it arrived, I thought it was all one colour, but it turned out to be two skeins, one 60g-ish peachier one and one 40g-ish sunshiney yellowier one. So I made socks with a contrast toe, heel and ribbing.

I'm pleased with how the heel came out. I like the convenience of short row heels, but when you've got big feet like me (or my sister), sometimes they make the sock pull too much over the instep with no gusset. Using 60% of the stitches to make the heel instead of 50% helps it to fit better. I love these socks, but I don't really wear orange.

Here's a detail so you can see the stitch pattern. Colours are more accurate in the top picture.