Thursday, 23 October 2008

Double sox

Knitting has been pretty slow recently. I think I got a bit carried away with the number of projects I had on the go, and achieved very little on any of them. School has been pretty busy too, so I'm counting down the hours until half term! I have finished a couple of pairs of socks. The first, Dublin Bay, using yarn from the Natural Dye Studio sock club. I love the colours, but noticed that after a weekend of particularly intense knitting, that my finger had a decidedly purple tinge! So my feet may go the same way. I'll let you know! These were the socks that the Yarn Harlot helped me to knit at the I Knit day (told you that I'd not done much knitting!)

The second pair were knitted for Mr Josiekitten after much muttering about me not having knitted him a pair of socks yet! The yarn drove me nuts, as I found it really hard to count the stitches. It was a bit like one of those Magic Eye books (that dates me!) and made my eyes go all funny. But they are finished, and he wore them for modelling purposes, but says that it's too warm for them at the moment!

We are off to Kos for half term. I haven't had my dose of Greece this year, and can't wait! Saganaki cheese, gyros, tzatsiki, baklava ................. I could go on. I have plenty of yarn stashed in my case, so am hoping for a profitable week. I'll let you know when I get back.

Sunday, 12 October 2008

A day of much squishing and fondling.....

I went on a day trip yesterday.........

Any idea where........?!
Need another clue? Come on, you must have got it by now!
Yes! I went to the Knitting and Stitching Show at Alexandra Palace. I travelled down on an organised coach trip, so was able to knit on the journey, and managed to finish Mr Josiekitten's socks. It's at least ten years since I last went, and I'd forgotten just how many people were going to be there, but once I got over the shock of the crowds, the adrenaline started flowing and I started to explore. I decided that the best way to 'do' Ally Pally was to start at one end of the hall, and work up and down the rows, noting anything that I wanted to come back to. It was hard to go past the Colinette stand right by the entrance. The skeins were just calling out to me! But I resisted the temptation, and started in row A. The first stand was some fun alpaca yarn, with lots of funky scarves adorning the display. Many of you will know that I don't think you can ever have enough scarves, so I wrote down the number of the stall to come back to later. And so it went on - squishing, fondling, stroking, aahing and oohing at all the wonderful yarny opportunities there were. I broke my 'just look and return later' rule when I got to the Get Knitted stand to find Koigu yarn for only £5 a skein. I knew that I had to buy some there and then. The difficulty was in deciding which colours to go for. I was buying not only for me, but also for my good knitting pal Snoopydog. Well, to cut a long story short, I ended up getting 8 skeins. Take a look and I think you'll agree that it is truly delicious!

I didn't bother looking at any of the stands selling cross-stitch, patchwork and other sewing crafts. Nor was I interested in getting some false finger nails, (how strange - maybe people get them done to coordinate with whatever project they are working on!) or buying a new handbag, although I very nearly weakened at the fudge stand! That's where the I Knit day was better in my opinion, because you didn't have to search through all the other stands to find the woolly ones! I got a great haul of goodies ......... I bought 2 skeins of Colinette Parisienne mohair to make a scarf like Snoopydog's. The colours are gorgeous. I also bought a skein of Colinette Iona to make myself a hat with earflaps. I promise to post some pictures when it's made, even though I'm not really a hat person and look very silly wearing one!

I bought some Wendy 'Happy' sock yarn - 75% bamboo and 25% nylon. Also some Rowan Kidsilk Haze for (another!) scarf.
I bought the plain pink yarn and a rather nice button to make a felted bag, along with the Lang Mille Colori yarn. The bright multi pink alpaca at the front is going to be turned into a rather funky scarf. I loved the pattern and couldn't get it without buying the yarn! I also treated myself to a skein of incredibly bright sock yarn from HipKnits. I bought a pair of wooden knitting needles to make myself a Haven scarf, inspired by Susan Crowe's, and a circular needle to try knitting socks in the round!
It was a great day - now excuse me if I go and get on with some knitting. I think I probably have enough sock wool to last me a lifetime! My yarn diet starts right NOW!!!

Thursday, 9 October 2008

Ouch! I felt that!

I have to share with you my first unintentional felted project! My gorgeous Artesano Alpaca Hummingbird socks have been well and truly felted! When I first started to knit them, I had to frog my knitting, as they were knitting up to fit an elephant! Oh how I wish that I had left them at that size. Maybe they'd fit me now! They accidentally snuck themselves into a 30 degree wash, and the rest, as they say, is history!

Here's what they looked like freshly knitted.

And here's what they look like freshly felted!

They were such lovely socks to wear - very soft and warm. Hmmmmm - Ally Pally is coming up this weekend. I might just have to treat myself to another skein!

Sunday, 5 October 2008

Innocent Hats

Having been inspired by both Kate and Susan to knit some little hats for Innocent Smoothie bottles, I set to this weekend, managing to make 12. Each hat goes on a smoothie bottle, raising 50p for Age Concern for each bottle sold. What a great cause. As I didn't have too much double knitting yarn at home, I raided the wool stashed away in my classroom (I have 4 large boxes !), and brought home with me an assortment of bright acrylic yarn. I didn't attempt anything too ambitious - a few striped hats, some with pompoms (bought a great little pompom maker to do those with) and some with i-cords. Next I needed some volunteers to model the Josiekitten 2008 Innocent collection.

Meet, from left to right, Betty, Bernard and Belinda!

They needed a little gentle persuasion to remove their scarves, the weather being somewhat inclement on the North Norfolk coast. But when I pointed out that there might be some colour clashing if not, they soon obliged!

The first hats modelled were the multi-coloured acrylic yarns (spot any similarities with the scarves?!)
Next came the stripy pompom range. Belinda really wanted to wear Betty's pink and purple striped hat, but Betty beat her to it.

Following that, the stripy i-cord collection. Bernard baggsed the Dennis the Menace one.

And finally, the cotton/angora hats. The cotton ones were a little larger, so were destined for Bernard and Belinda. Betty had the luxury of a Louisa Harding Kimono hat, and she did rather show off about it in front of the others.

We had great fun, well all except for Billy, who refused to take his Santa hat off! He watched the proceedings from the sidelines. Maybe he will be more cooperative next year!

Wednesday, 1 October 2008

Another scarf!

I made myself a scarf using the skein of Rowan Colourscape bought at the weekend. I was off work yesterday and today, full of cold, so spent some of the time knitting, with the cats and a box of tissues for company! I love the colours in the yarn. The pattern is called 'Tainted', and called for two skeins of yarn. I only bought one, and my scarf measures 145cm, as opposed to the 160cm required from 2 skeins. I'm happy with mine the length it is. The pattern was very easy to memorise, and knitted up very quickly. This project didn't even get to be a WIP on Ravelry!