Sunday, 30 November 2008

FO: Good Luck Cowl

I made this cowl in the hope that it will work as a bit of a bribe. My sewing is hopeless and my darning is non-existent. I have a couple of hand knitted socks that have developed holes and need darning. A friend of mine has darned some of my socks in the past and she did a splendid job. Now I need to ask her to do so again. I thought the good luck cowl might be a good incentive.

I still had a ball of the Cleckheaton Bamboo left after I had knitted my socks so I thought I would put it to good use.

It turned out to be just the right amount seeing as I now only have a few centimeters of yarn left.

I really like this yarn and I like the cowl so I think I'm going to have to get some to make myself a cowl or something. The only problem is the very limited colour range. But I won't let that put me off too much.

Friday, 28 November 2008

FO: Rib and Lace ankle socks

My socks are done and I love them.

In fact I finished them a few days ago but life has been a bit busy and I've not had a chance to get to the computer.

These socks took me down memory lane. They so remind me of the socks my grandmother used to knit for me as a child. The difference though is that Ouma Betty's socks were done in pure cotton. After a few washes they used to become hard and unyielding and very difficult for a little girl to get them on her feet. Ouma taught me a nifty way of folding them so that I could get them on my feet unassisted.

The bamboo makes these socks soft and silky. I hope they last as long as those cotton socks.

Sunday, 23 November 2008

A time for lace

I had intended calling this post A Long Lacy Summer but after yesterday's snow and the wind storm overnight I had to rethink that one. We woke to find a lot of debris in our garden, a small tree over our driveway and our road blocked by this:

But despite the cold my mind is still on lace. I have completed another 20 rows of my AMS. Now that might not sound much to you, and I can't really see the progress, BUT every row contains over 500 stitches at this stage so I figure its not bad going.

And for more instant gratification I have started a pair of rib and lace socks. I'm using Cleckheaton Bamboo for these. I love the soft silky feel of this yarn. Its a bit of an experiment because I have no idea how well the yarn will wear. I'm unable to link this pattern because it is one I tore out of Creative Knitting quite sometime ago. I was going through a cleaning up spree and tried to declutter. Never made a note of the issues when I ripped the patterns out. Live and learn.

Now I have been tagged by Cathy. I’m to comment about the last ten persons who leave a note on my blog. If you’re mentioned below, consider yourself tagged.

1) Blue Kelebek is a great crocheter and a relative newcomer to knitting. Although you would never have guessed it because her work is fabulous. Check out her latest lace shawl - WOW!

2) Jack is a fabulous craftster. Her patterns are well worth investigating.

3) Val has become a great blogging friend. I always look forward to her next posting and eagerly await her comment on my blog.

4) I met T when she and J ran the Hanami Kal and I have followed her progress ever since.

5) Baruch has a special place in my heart. I love her photography.

6) Mary's lace work is gorgeous and an inspiration.

7) Phyllis' blog simply bursts with life.

8) I discovered Bells' blog through A long Lacy Summer. And man, can this woman knit!

9) And then there's Cathy who tagged me. Her blog is well worth visiting.

10) And finally Machenmachen who made me that gorgeous sun hat. She has some lovely designs on her blog.

You don't need to feel obliged to play along but it will be great if you do. Even if you don't wish to tag others please do check out the tagged blogs because its a great way to meet new bloggers and to pass on the blogging word!

Friday, 21 November 2008

FO: Isabella

I have completed my Isabella. I knitted this in Filatura Di Crosa Millefile Fine using 3.00 mm needles.

The only modification I made was to double the rows of the sleeve edging. I don't like getting the sun on the tops of my shoulders.

It was freezing when the photos were taken and thus the goosebumps!

I liked working with this yarn and it feels good on my skin. There is quite a bit of stretch in the yarn so it will be interesting to see how it wears over time. The yarn has a beautiful sheen which helps to show off the lace detail.

Tuesday, 18 November 2008

FO: New Heel Socks

I finally finished these socks.

The really good thing about doing socks using short rows (yep, that dreaded wrap & turn thing) is that it works really well when you are knitting two socks at a time on two circular needles. The downside of these heels is that it is so difficult to see the wraps when you need to pick them up. Unfortunately I read this tip from Ann too late. She suggests putting in a marker at each wrap. I'm definitely going to give that a go next time.

The other discovery I made is that I think I'm going off self striping sock yarn. And that is a bit of a problem because I still have several skeins in my stash. I guess what I need is an exciting pattern that works well with a self striping yarn. Any suggestions?

Saturday, 15 November 2008

No Sheep for You!

My swap parcel arrived last night and I am thrilled. The wonderful AliMachenMachen was my swap partner and sent me this wonderful parcel.

This is the second time that I have been so fortunate as to be Ali's swap partner. Much to my delight the coffee, chocolate and sun hat came in one of her wonderful little project bags.

The hat is simply perfect and had its first outing today when I went birdwatching.

We went birdwatching at the slate quarry in Bullengarook. Only saw 22 species, although that is pretty good for these dry times. The highlight of the morning was a great sighting of the yellow-tufted honeyeater. A real little stunner.

Wednesday, 12 November 2008

Time to get organised again

Every now and then I reach a point in my knitting when I feel that my Wips have been hanging around on the needles for far too long. I get an itch to start new things but feel I can't until I've knocked off some of the current projects. So, over the coming weeks I want to finish some things.

I've finished my Hoodie, except for a couple of buttons.

This will have to be gifted to someone living in a colder climate than ours. Anybody out there who wants to put a hand up?

I've completed the back of my Isabella for my Melbourne Cup KAL and I've started on the front. As there are no sleeves to knit I should be able to finish this sometime next week.

Then these socks have been hanging around for ages. I don't normally take this long to finish a pair of socks but somehow they never get a fair go. I'm knitting these as part of my SSoS challenge. I wanted to try a different heel construction.

Normally I knit a heel flap and then pick up the stitches for the gusset. With these socks you knit the heel and gusset all in one using short rows. I find this a better way of doing heels when knitting two socks at a time on two circular needles. Its far less fiddly. And the end product doesn't really look any different from the heel flap method.

And finally I really have to get back to my Anniversary Mystery Shawl. I've started on clue 4 and then still need to do the edging. I like the pattern and I like the colour of the yarn but I've neglected this shawl terribly. So, as soon as I finish my socks I will start paying more attention to this shawl.

Monday, 10 November 2008

Still guessing but...

I've finished the 6th clue of the Mystery Project # 3 and I've pinned it up like this:

So, is it a hood that buttons under the chin?

Sunday, 9 November 2008

What is it?

I've now completed clue 4 of the Mystery Project #3.

I still don't know what I am knitting. A hat? Perhaps a bag? Any ideas?

After the glorious rain on Friday - a wonderful 26.5 mm - the garden is looking a treat. Look at these beauties.

Sapho is my favourite rhodie.

Unfortunately I don't know the name of these two voluptuous beauties.

Friday, 7 November 2008

Another Mystery

I'm knitting the Mystery Project #3 over on Holiday Mystery Gifts. This is another design by Terry Morris.

I don't know what it is yet but I suspect it might be some kind of cozy wrap or shawlette. I think it must be because I love puzzles and detective stories that I find these mysteries irresistible.

I've also made a little bit of progress on my Melbourne Cup KAL.

Oh, and a quick aside. It's raining at the moment and the mist is hanging in the trees. Fingers crossed that it lasts all night.

Wednesday, 5 November 2008

Quick gifts

I needed a quick gift for a friend so I sat down this afternoon and whipped up this dishcloth.

I found the pattern here. I used Moda Vera Bamboo/cotton and I like the fact that it is so colourful.

Blogging Friends Forever

Now the talented photographer Baruch has given me a "Blogging Friends Forever Award".

To keep the ball rolling I must now pass on this award to 5 other bloggers. I have chosen the following blogs because:

Limestone Coasties - Val always manages to amuse me, post delightful pictures and her pugs are the cutetest.

Baad Medicine - both T and J talk my kind of knitting.

Blue Kelebek - a blog that vibrates with energy, fun, love and goodness.

Mary - a knitting inspiration and a very successful enabler.

Spin, Knit and life - Phyllis is a relative newcomer to my blog. Her blog is always filled with interesting snippets.

Now it is your turn to give the award to 5 other bloggers of your choice based on these rules:

1. Only five people are allowed

2. Four have to be dedicated followers of your blog

3. One has to be someone new or recently new to your blog and live in another part of the world

4. You must link back to whoever gave you the award

Tuesday, 4 November 2008

Henley done - well almost

I finally finished my Henley Perfected last night. I knitted this in ColourMart DK silk and it feels lovely against the skin.

I still need to add the buttons though. I haven't had a chance yet to find the right buttons.

Note that I have not provided any close-up detail because as usual I have made a real dog's breakfast of the seaming. I simply cannot sew. Its not for nothing that I have become a lace shawl addict. All that glorious knitting and at the end only a couple of ends to weave in - definitely my kind of sewing.

Having said that I have committed to more seaming. I've joined the Melbourne Cup KAL on Ravelry. Ha, there she goes again I hear you say. But this is a slightly different KAL - you simply knit whatever you feel like knitting, starting today. I've decided on this pattern. I swatched last night and used my lovely new gauge square to ease the pain. Today I've managed to cast on but I haven't got any further than that.

As part of my SSoS challenge I have started knitting a pair of socks with a heel construction I haven't tried before - short rows with wraps. I thought I would just knit a pair of vanilla socks in a self striping yarn but found that boring so I've added a panel of full diamonds. Bit lost in this yarn but it keeps me happy.