Thursday, 28 June 2007

Couldn't resist stashing some more........

OK so I had a lovely skein of Tencil / Merino sock wool arrive on Friday from Kerrie at Hipknits to say thank you for finding her the white hat boxes that she needed for a project she was doing. It is a mix of blue and beige and is really, really soft. I will post a picture later - promise. This meant I then spent further time browsing the sale section of the site and found myself buying further stash. I am not sure entirley what I am going to be getting as I have opted for the lucky dip 500grm (5 skeins) of mixed yarn in one colourway. I am excited and hoping to get some of her lovely sea based colours. I also couldn't resist a couple of skeins of Sari silk that were also on special as they were plain colours rather than the mixed jewel ones. So now I just wait in anticipation of my parcel arriving to find out what I have got. I will photograph and post just as soon as they arrive.

Tuesday, 19 June 2007

So what can I knit with this lovely yarn..........

So what can I knit with this lovely yarn. I aquired the skein of Sari silk (Mango moon) at a recent trip to a Craft Fayre in Henley on Thames. On my return home I remembered that somewhere buried in my stash was a skein that I had bid for on ebay and I thought the colours maybe similar and enough of it to compliment those in the sari silk. I think I am right in thinking that the two go rather well together. The big dilema is what to knit with them now to show off both their beautiful colours and their complimentary textures, even though they are both a silk.

There is approx 170grms (150 yards) of the Sari silk and a further 50 grms (87 metres) of the Noro blossom.

I really want a project other than a scarf if I can possibly find a suitable one.

Well despite all my efforts I didn't quite finish the laceweight silk wrap. But I have now managed a good 48" which isn't bad really. I haven't picked up the needles since Sunday evening due to work load but I am hoping to get at least an hour in this evening although I have started another project from my simply knitting magazine that hit the mat on Saturday morning. More about that in my next post.

Saturday, 16 June 2007

Shaun the sheep and the great Picknit

A couple of weeks ago we decided it would be a good idea to go to pay a visit to the Camden Green Fair in Regents park. A friend Robynn, of Purlesence, was helping out showing people how to knit. Anyway we treked up on public transport, being green and all that to see what else was going on.
We bumped into Shaun the sheep and some Picknitters. C and E were both desperate to have their pictures taken with Shaun, both being beginner knitters themselves. There was lots of lovely food being knitted, not to mention some real brownies and cakes that were offered to those who showed an interest.
Inside the tent were some fantastic ideas for recycling fabrics and yarns to create some lovely items. There were a group of ladies cutting up strips of fabric to then create into balls of yarn to knit up into bags and rugs. There was also weaving and redesigning and embelishing of clothing go on. Plenty to keep the children occupied and give the adults something to think about. I can see us experimenting with cutting up old t-shirts in the summer to make balls of yarn.

Shaun the Sheep's Picknit Challenge
You can find out more about Shaun the sheep's Picknit challenge at .
The challenge is to create a life sized picnic out of wool. This is so that money can be raised for the Wallace & Grommit Children's Foundation. They are asking people to have a sponsored knit to create items. The finished picnic will be exhibited at the ICHF Creative Stitches & Hobbycraft shows that tour around the country in the autumn of 2007 and spring of 2008. You should send your completed items to:
Shaun the Sheep's Picknit Challenge
Dominic House
Seaton Road
BH23 5HW

You can find out more information from the following organisation; and

I now need to think about what I am going to knit. I did knit a sausage once as a Brownie when we knitted a cooked breakfast!

The other bit of dyeing

This is the Kool aid colour chart I used to help me.

In my earlier blog I showed some rather lurid, neon green hand dyed wool created using my kit purchased from D and T craft. But that was not the only dyeing that I did that Eurovision evening. I have now downloaded the photos of what was actually my very first attempt. I have to say I am rather pleased with the result and the colours are more 'me' than the neon green. The only problem now is what to knit with it now I have got it.
There is 50g of lovely double knitting wool to be made into something special - oh and not a hat! Nothing against hats but I want something a bit more exclusive. I want something that will show off the blends of the colours.

So any ideas anyone?

Friday, 15 June 2007

A challenge from a friend.........

Ok so here is how it started. Yesterday I got a call from a friend.

"Can I come round and show you my new swift and ball winder."

"Oh yes" I said. I have only ever seen them on blogs and ebay never in flesh so to speak.

So there we are setting them up on my coffee table for a first run. Swift at one end, ball winder at the other, and two cats thinking christmas had come early and they had been bought a new entertainment centre. (Who needs a Nintendo Wii anyway!)

So my friend starts to try it out on a rather nice, but regular skein of plum cashmere and it works well. A few little hiccups to start with but other wise fine, keeping the little metal guide thing at the right height so it doesn't wind up the yarn underneath being one and sorting out any little knots in the skein being the other, otherwise what I would call sucess.

It is at this point that she suggests that I get out the skein of rather lovely sea colours in novelty lace weight silk that I have been stashing away as I have been undecided what to knit with it to have a go at using the ball winder. So we do and here are the results.

I really love the colours. I actually had two skeins of this yarn so one is wound into a lovely little yarn cake (centre pull ball) and the other shows the original skein. I then spent the next few hours deciding what to knit with it. Also what stitch and what size needles. After much discussion about the pros and cons of novelty yarn we both thought that it would be good to keep the knitting as plain as possible and let all the interest come from the yarn itself.

So I went for casting on 80 sts on 10mm Brittany needles and garter stitch and this is how far I have got...........
So the challenge you might ask what was that........ well mainly I suppose to get off my backside and start knitting this yarn ( I've had it sitting around since March) but secondly I have my knitting group on Sunday evening at 7.30pm and I would like to finish it by then. Quite a challenge with 30 reports that also need writing and visitors on Sunday. We will see. Knitting with big needles isn't as easy as I thought it would be as I have quite small hands. I will show photographic evidence of progress on Sunday evening.

Tagged again so soon.............

Thank you Gabrielle for tagging me for a second time before I have even gotten over the first. Lets see what I have to reveal this time then?

4 jobs I have had in my Life:
  • Silver service waitress from the age of 15 right through my student days - good fun and I never had to worry about what to wear on a Saturdy night as it was always black and white
  • Sales assistant on the perfume counter in Gatwick airport in the old Duty free lounge. I spent a whole summer working there while waiting for my A level results to come out
  • Packaging operative - working for Smith Kleine Beechams as it was then. Again another source of gainful employment for a student holiday job. I went to America with the money that I saved and bought myself a bike.
  • Teacher - I always wanted to be so I am and always will be.

4 films I can watch again and again:
  • The breakfast club - I love those 80's brat pack movies as they were known then
  • Dirty Dancing - no-one sits baby in the corner. I even got my hair permed to look like hers.
  • Educating Rita - my favourite line is when Julie Walters is talking to Michael Cain about Macbeth and she says "Wasn't his wife a cow!"
  • The Jazz Singer - the Neil Diamond film from the 70's - I still cry every time I watch it. I also know all the songs by heart. That is entirely my fathers fault of course but I was brought up on it.

4 places I have lived:

This one is a little harder as I haven't really ventured too far or anywhere exciting

  • Portland Bill - well close to, when I was born my father was in the Navy and stationed at the Navy base there.
  • Crawley - New town of the 50's and 60's. I grew up and went to school here.
  • Exeter - definately my favourite of all the places I have lived and where I would like to go back to live. I spent four fantastic years there while I completed my degree. I love to go back and visit whenever I can
  • West London - where I live now - I have done from close proximity of one airport to another. I have lived here for the last 15 years. I only intended to stay two years before moving back down to Devon, funny how things work out really
4 series I watch:
This is easy except there may be more than four
  • Dr Who and Torchwood - can they count as one as there are similar characters and one is a spin off.
  • The apprentice - love it, love it, love it.
  • Desperate Housewives - the writers are really talented and how they get all those twists going is really amazing
  • Big Brother - well usually I do but I haven't had 5 seconds this year to watch
  • Graham Norton - anything he is presenting at anytime I just find him so funny.

I don't actually watch a lot of telly and it tends to be after 9pm in the evening when I finally get to sit down. I am looking forward to the new series of Rome though.

4 places I have been on holiday:
  • Devon - many holidays spent here camping or at a very lovely little hotel which has since closed and been converted to flats
  • America - Seattle to be precise which did include a visit to the famous Church Mouse knitting supplies shop on Bainbridge Island, just a ferry ride away
  • Turkey - where I have been for the last two holidays - my first ever experience of all inclusive. It was just great and I spent my evenings knitting in the bar.
  • Centre parcs - both Uk and France - both were excellent but not at all cheap. I love the Aqua Sana.

4 things I do everytime I am on the net:
  • Check my mail
  • go onto ebay - almost every time
  • look at yarn stores - see the list of places to stash
  • look at my blog - as you can see I haven't actually got into routine of updating it yet but the summer holidays will soon be upon us

4 places I would love to be right now:
  • At a spa having a luxurious treatment and a French manicure - I have never had one and each time I even dare to think my nails might have grown long enough they break.
  • In Italy eating my favourite icecream - not that I have ever been to Italy it is just an image I have
  • India, in a yoga ashram learning to find my inner peace and calm
  • Japan sharing one of those hot natural pools with those monkeys - know the ones I mean?

I hope someone finds this interesting. It is interesting how some things were easier to list than others.

So its been a little while...........

Ok so its been a little while since I have added anything to my blog. Why? Well I've been really busy learning how to use my new camera so I can take some nice pictures of my projects and my stash to put on here. Also it is that time of year when every spare minute on the computer is used for writing reports!

Ok so here is the first view of the hand dyed yarn I mentioned earlier actually being knitted up.

This is the start of the first sock. I'm actually quite pleased with the way that the colours have come out. Not bad for a first attempt really. I have used a well tested and simple sock pattern that comes free from Regia yarns with their self striping sock yarn. A simple rib for the cuff and then straight for the rest of the sock.

Ok so I've finished the first sock already and I have already now turbned the heel of the second. I am hoping to get them finished this weekend if at all possible. Maybe a little knitting on the sofa while watching Doctor Who!

Anyway now I have got the camera up and running I am hoping to start up a little gallery of my recent finished projects. I have nearly finshed the child's hoodie too. I did knit up the two sleeves together and that did relieve a bit of the boredom and that dread of knowing once you have knitted the first one you've still got another one to go. (Pictures to follow shortly.)