Friday, 23 January 2015

FO Friday

Woohoo, yet another FO and another completed project from my seemingly endless list!

I cast off my Jul Hat in Yarn Stories Fine Merino and Baby Alpaca DK (Fuchsia) this week and am really pleased with both the fit and the FO.  The purl bumps in the pattern are a fantastic design addition to a simple hat pattern and the hat has just the right amount of slouch.  The yarn is a sumptuous blend that has a slight alpaca halo but not that much that the definition of the pattern is lost.  Definitely a yarn and pattern I'll use again!

Wednesday, 21 January 2015

2015 Project Wish List

After yesterdays blog post of WIP accountability, I decided to collate my wish list of projects.  Some of these are very much carried over from last year as I really didn't complete half as much as I wanted to.  One of the very few downsides of the total lack of child free time with home edding and having four small people (and one large one!)  That said, I am VERY easily distracted even if I do have interrupted knitting time and like many of us, can waste huge chunks of time procrastinating on Rav looking at new patterns and yarns!

I'm still planning on completing my woefully long list of WIP's first of course!

I've wanted to make this since I saw a Kauni EQ version on Ravelry!  Originally I planned to do it all in Kauni including the white section, but then couldn't get hold of any Kauni Unicolour!  I eventually brought some undyed Aracunia Ranco for both this WIP and dyeing projects as, whilst cheap, it's a nice yarn to work with.  I have a skein of Kauni EQ stashed but then found some gorgeous shetland mini skeins which I shall use instead so I can control the colour changes better.


This was one of my "new-techniques-I-wanna-learn" projects.  I fell in love with the shawl and decided I would learn double knitting just to make it.  I often look at patterns and think "I can't make that!" when in reality even the most difficult techniques can be easy when properly explained.  Being able to watch youtube videos and blog posts definitely makes more advanced methods more accessible!    I have skeins of Wollmeise Pure in True Love and a WD Black reserved for this WIP.

3 COLOUR CASHMERE COWL by Joji Locatelli

I fell in love with this instantly because the colours used in the sample are SO very me!!  I'd have cast it on already if it wasn't for the fact I don't have the perfect yarn combo in my stash - I have 2/3rds of the perfect yarn combination several times lol but am currently trying NOT to buy new yarn!  I think I should be able to stash bust this one if I sit and sort the stash and play with some colour options!  That hasn't stopped me spending vast amounts of time window shopping and attempting to find perfect yarn - I'm quite tempted to get some Holst Garn Noble as the shopping to the UK is insanely reasonable and I love my Holst Garn Supersoft...I'm hoping I can sell some bits to fund it!


I cast this on last year in a gorgeous skein of Wollmeise Pure but sadly messed up horribly in the edge lace section after 7 or so hearts and ended up frogging it in frustration!  

After these I'm planning on finding projects for the fantastic yarn I already have stashed!  I have huge amounts of handspun and some very special gorgeous skeins which I am itching to turn into shawls and the like.  As long as I don't get distracted by other nice projects (like the fabulous Chill Chaser by Amy Miller) or any must have yarn bargains, I should be fine!  That said there are several yarns I am yearning to work with after seeing gorgeous results elsewhere - Sarah over at Crafts from the Cwtch constantly tempts me with her projects in Scheepjes Stone Washed XL.  

So many projects and gorgeous yarn, so little time - and that's not even including spinning and weaving plans eeep!!

Tuesday, 20 January 2015

January WIP Accountability

As previously blogged about, my WIP pile is getting a tad out of hand. I seem to keep casting on small items in an attempt to avoid the completing the larger or boring ones...or because new yarn forces me to!
So my current WIP list in an attempt to shame (!?) me into turning these all into FO's before starting new things I REALLY want to make! I'm even including old hibernating WIP's that I like to forget about hehe

JUL HAT in Yarn Stories Fine Merino and Baby Alpaca DK (Fuchsia)

I cast this on this weekend after a cold trip to town and a severe shortage of hats (that fit me anyway!) in my knitted things box! I was lucky enough to win this yarn on the Yarn Stories facebook page over Christmas. The squishy softness and fabulous colour made it a perfect contender for a quick knit and after spotting the Jul pattern on IG I knew they'd work well together! In reality I should be able to get this finished in a day or so if I stop working on everything else!

ORLA MITTS in Bergere de France Ideal (Meije, Calanque, Vitamine, Citronnier)

This is an adapted pattern of the Orla Mittens as I only really wear fingerless gloves. Orla Kiely stem print is my favourite print so I had to cast these on when I saw them! I completed the first one in the New Year and them promptly stashed the WIP bag away! Mainly because colour work with a toddler (and the other, older members of the family!) constantly needing/interrupting you is far from a peaceful activity even if you find charted colour work sooooo simple like I do. I cast on the second glove on Friday and finished the bottom hem section before casting on my Jul hat so I'll complete this WIP after the hat.

SONNENSEGEL in Noro Kureyon Sock (240) and Drops Brushed Alpaca Silk (02 Hellgrau)

This was one of those "I need something simple to knit" projects which I started late one night last week. I stashed some Kidsillk Haze Eclipse last month and spotted the pattern whilst I was searched on Rav for inspiration. I originally cast on with the Rowan but the sparkle of the Eclipse wasn't a great match for the rustic-ness of the Noro. The Drops yarn however is a fabulous contrast and beautifully soft as well as extremely cheap! I'm actually in no rush to complete this as it's a great project for knitting out and about or in bed.

THE HUDSON HAT in Lion Brand Amazing (Muana Loa)

I actually forgot I had started this! I promised Rach a bigger hudson hat as she wears one she has had since she was a baby in bed still! She choose the yarn from my stash despite me wanting to make her a scrappy handspun one. I think I spent a grand total of an hour or so on this and have literally on done one icord and earflap - oops! Will check she still wants it in this yarn before knitting any more I think but otherwise should be another quick one to complete!

RASPBERRY MITTS in Rico Design Creative Poems Aran (04 & 05)

Urgh I started to make these for a Home Ed group selling type thing which I ended up not going to as one of the smalls was ill. I didn't actually complete them anyway! I was making one glove of each pair from each ball of yarn so that the pairs matched and have complete 4 (or 5) individual gloves of the 5 pairs I was making from the four balls of yarn. Confused yet?! I shall probably complete them and sell them off somewhere at some point - hopefully sooner rather than later to free up project bags/space.

BIELLESE in West Yorkshire Spinners Signature 4 Ply (Bubblegum & Sour Apple)

Umm, reaching the old hibernating WIP's now! I fell in love with this pattern and this yarn combination but aren't so in love with knitting it! The short row ruffle edging is knit separately from the bottom up shawl and then you need to pick up hundreds of stitches to start the shawl body. I think I have managed about ten of the hundred short row segments :-/ Still one I intend to complete though despite not touching it since May!

THE HULK (AKA PLUM ISLAND BIG BABY BLANKET) in Cygnet Seriously Chunky (Meadow Green)

Okay - this is my nemesis project. I haven't touched it for a year simply because knitting it flares up my carpel tunnel and tendonitis SO badly I end up splinting my wrists for weeks. It was inspired by a blanket I saw whilst shopping and in reality should have just brought!! I am determined to finish this this year!!

That's it!! I decided to frog the socks I started two years ago as I a) still don't wear socks and b) no longer really like the pattern! I'll probably cast on socks at some point - I do only wear Mary Jane's so they'd look cute except I pair Mary Jane's with Swing and 50's dresses so not in reality a good look!!
I have finished one thing (gasp) so far this year - a Chunky Buttoned Cowl in James C Brett Merino Blend Chunky, finished with some hand made log hazel wood buttons. The pattern was exactly what I wanted and the finished cowl is gorgeously squishy and ideal for the freezing temperatures at the moment.

A New Year...

Blogging sadly took a back seat as I manically crafted over December in an attempt to finish the gifts I needed to make.  I always swear I will a) not procrastinate and complete Christmas gifts earlier in the year and b) will never make gifts again but I don't seem to be able to stick to either!

My main Christmas makes were my first hand woven shawl for DH's mum...

Handwoven Shawl in West Yorkshire Spinners Signature 4Ply

A commissioned Creeper Hat and matching fleece lined scarf set...

It's a...Creeper Hat and Scarf Set
 Some gradiant dyed sock yarn for my fab bestie...

Gradient Sock Yarn
Plus a couple of leather fauxdori's I forgot to take pictures of (which included another A5 fauxdori for myself in pink leather!)

My WIP list seems to have grown immensely since finishing the Christmas gifts as I appear to be suffering from a severe case of castonitis (and I'll do a separate blog post to attempt to keep myself accountable for all new new WIP's and old hibernating ones!)  I'd pretty much decided that I was going to stash bust this year and complete my wish list or knit from yarn already in my stash.  It's going reasonably well - mainly due to lack of yarn funds - but that doesn't stop me continually browsing for yarn for new projects I've seen and need to make hehe. 

December/January Yarn Acquisitions...well some of them!

In other non crafty news, so far this month we have had two important birthdays.  Harrison turned 10 on the 7th and DH was 40 on Saturday (he also shares his birthday with his brother who is 9 years younger)  Both were quiet affairs with family and best friends and absolutely no photos! 

As for far as New Year resolutions go, I'm more just striving towards completing some long term wishes and working on self improvement and happiness!