Sunday, 6 February 2011

Swapping rocks!

Good evening to you! Have you had a good week? I've been a bit under the weather with a sore throat and a cough - one of the perils of teaching, as the children are so generous with their germs! The weekend couldn't come soon enough! I've had a very lazy couple of days relaxing at home with Mr JK and Henrycat. Henrycat is still a bit of a poorly pussy cat - his check up at the vet's on Friday showed he'd lost more weight, and he is still being sick, so has some new medication to try and stop this. I feel that he's on his 9th life now, and probably won't be with us for much longer. He is still enjoying cuddles from his Mum ........

Henrycat cuddles 002

and surveying his world out in the garden too.

Henrycat looks noble (1)

Thank you to all of you who left a message following my last post. I used a random number generator to choose the 3 winners. Drum roll please......

We have some winners!

The winners are Gail, Northern Monkey and Squirrel - many congratulations to you. Please get in touch with me via Ravelry or email me at josiekitten at hotmail dot com, and I'll get a little something off in the post to you!

I've managed to do a bit of knitting and spinning this week. Remember my Berry handspun from last week? Well, I decided to have a go at knitting it up. Oh, the excitement of making a yarn cake from my own handspun using my swift and ball winder!!

handspun yarn cake 001

I calculated that I had about 120 metres of yarn, so decided to make another Cabled Keyhole scarf from Knitspot. It's a quick, fun knit - be warned, they're extremely addictive! I bet you can't just make one! (This is my 4th!) I had to go up a needle size to take into account the individuality of my yarn!! But the result is a gorgeous (though I say so myself!) snuggly warm neck cosy.

cabled keyhole neckcosy - handspun! (2)

Seeing this knit up inspired me to sit down at the spinning wheel again this weekend. This time I used some more subtle fibre from The Thylacine, with the hope of producing something knittable for Mr JK. I've spun around 140 metres, and have been searching for hat patterns on Ravelry. Not quite sure yet which pattern I shall choose. It's 100% BFL - the colours remind me of the beach in winter. See what you think.

Winter beach - handspun 5

My Peasy is now back on track, and I've just started the first sleeve. I hope that it's going to be big enough this time! I've also made progress on Charlotte's birthday socks. The first one is finished, and the second started. I need to have it finished by next Sunday, so shall be concentrating on that for the start of the week. It's such a great pattern - although it looks complicated, it's dead simple!

Charlotte's Circle socks (3)

I've also begun crocheting some granny squares for the Crochet a Rainbow project. I'm aiming to make 20 over the next couple of weeks. I hope my colour combinations aren't too bright!!

Crocheting a rainbow WIP 002

I have a couple of Innocent Smoothie Hats of the week to show you too - both knitted using leftover handspun. I had some singles left over after plying, and managed to fight the twisting to knit this little pair.

Innocent Smoothie hats of the week 13 and 14 001

Regular readers will probably remember that I've done a number of swaps with a Canadian knitter, Cathy. We started chatting on Ravelry about eighteen months ago, and decided to swap some yarn. We've just done our 4th swap, and my parcel from Cathy arrived yesterday. Prepare to feast your eyes on some yarny goodness! Cathy recently visited Vogue Knitting Live in New York, and bought my swap goodies there! First I pulled out a skein of Blue Moon Fibre Arts Socks that Rock yarn, in the colourway My Blue Heaven. I have lusted after this yarn ever since I started knitting again, and it is really beautiful. The different shades of blue are just stunning!

swap that rocks! (2)

Second, also from Blue Moon, was a silk hanky. I had just been reading about how to knit with these on the Yarn Harlot's blog, and voila! I have my very own silk hankie! This is in the same shades of blue. You can knit directly from the hankie or else spin it. I'm not sure quite what I'm going to do with it yet, apart from stroke it!!

swap that rocks! (4)

Thirdly, some extremely luscious cashmere fibre. It is incredibly soft, and I shall be keeping it in my stash until my spinning can do it justice! Thank you so, so much Cathy for such wonderful gifts.

swap that rocks! (1)

I had to smile when I looked at my handspun compared with the Socks that Rock yarn - twins? Not quite, but it gives me something to aim for!

not quite twins!

Well, I must love you and leave you now - supper is calling. Mr JK has been busy in the kitchen, and beef stew and dumplings awaits! (There's also a rumour that apple crumble and custard might be on the menu too, but don't tell anyone I said!) Thanks for stopping by and have a good week! xxx

beef stew and dumplings - yum 001


Jenny said...

Oh Henrycat. I am still hoping that he will surprise you, do you remember when our lovely Cleo was diagnosed with TB and then made fools of the vets by bouncing back. Love is a powerful healer and I'm sure your darling is getting plenty of that. Have a good week with lots of soothing knitting, my fingers are crossed.

snoopydog said...

Oh dear, poor old Henry! Looks like he's happy and relaxed though. Hope the new medication will help him. I love the Cabled Keyhole scarf, made with your own handspun. Very impressive! What a lovely selection of blues from your swap partner. Gorgeous! Hope you're feeling better anfd have a good weeek. Rosx

Kathy said...

Sad news about Henry. You just need to enjoy him as much as you can now - he's still looking so handsome.
Those blues are so gorgeous I could almost be tempted to knit something myself.
Have a good week.

melissa said...

give sweet mr.henrycat some sweet pets from me and pippin.
did you make the sweater you're wearing in the top picture?

oh my helen - your knitting/crocheting pictures this week are a feast for the eyes! so many bright gorgeous colors!! love it!!

Northern Monkey said...

I'm sorry Henry is still unwell, poor little thing.

Your cabled keyhole scarf looks great, how fantastic you knit that from your own handspun.

You got some lovely gifts from your friend, how lovely that the colours go with what you've been spinning.

Your dinner looks fantastic, Mr NM's cooking doesn't go beyond (reheated) pie and chips! I hope you're feeling better and that you have a great week.

Anonymous said...

Oh, I hope both you and Henrycat are feeling better soon! He looks happy enough.

Your spinning looks fab! Isn't it great to be able to knit something with your own yarn? The first thing I made was a cowl, which my Mum stole from me.

And lovely STR! I've made one pair of socks with it, they're wearing really well, and I have another skein waiting for my sock-knitting mojo to return. Or for some of my socks to wear out!

Helsie said...

Hope both you and Henry are soon on the mend. Lots of lovely yarn and knitted stuff still being produced at your house I see.
Dinner looks good too and a crumble for dessert? Where did you find that man and has he a brother ?

Kathy said...

A lovely knitters (and spinners) week! What a lovely collection of stuff from Cathy! I'm sorry for mr henrycat, but I'll keep thinking about him.

Ozzy Blackbeard said...

I do hope HenryCat continues to be on the mend. He's so lovely.

I love all the yarny goodness, especially your handspun.

Maria said...

Your scarf in your own spin looks wonderful. How do you calculate the yardage?
I knew I could smell something nice, just could not find where it was coming from.
Dumpling recipe please - I will prepare for winter :-)

knitting said...

your level of productivity always baffles me. incredible! your spinning skills are just wonderful, i love those winter beach colors!
i am sure that Henrycat takes great comfort in those cuddles from Mum, and i'll bet he does wonders for you and your kid germs too! all the best to both of you!