Wednesday, 27 April 2011


A quick mid-week post this evening, as I shall be unable to blog on Sunday. Mr JK and I are escaping the wedding frenzy and heading off to Germany after work tomorrow, to stay with Mr JK's uncle and aunt. I quite like these 3 day weeks!

I've done a little more spinning over Easter. I spun up some superwash sparkly BFL from FeltStudioUK. It was lovely to spin. I haven't got enough yardage for socks, but hopefully some fingerless mittens! We shall see.

pansies handspun

The colours are so pretty - they remind me of pansies. Our winter hanging baskets are still full of blooms, as you can see.

pansies handspun 013

I'd love to be able to tell you that my Spriteling shawl is coming along nicely, but alas, all is not well! I was two rows from completing clue 1 when I discovered an extra stitch. So I frogged it back to row 50. I managed to make the same mistake a second time (I've checked for errata and there aren't any for this row, so it must be me!), and frogged back to row 40! So I'm making very s l o w progress. Clue 3 comes out tomorrow, but I'm not going to really be able to get stuck into it until half term. I've found that I need complete silence to knit lace. I talk to myself, chanting the stitch patterns out loud, and must look completely mad to onlookers!! To cheer myself up, I've cast on for another Ishbel using my own handspun yarn. The colour changes look lovely, and I should be able to knit the stocking stitch part at the very least without major mishaps! Photos on my return. So, I must leave you now, and get my bags packed for my getaway. Fingers crossed the cases arrive safely this time! See you next week! xxx

Sunday, 24 April 2011

Easy Peasy!

Happy Easter to you! Hope you are enjoying the holiday weekend. We've had some unseasonably warm spring weather, and have been making the most of it, getting out and about. It was 25 degrees yesterday, although it's cooler today, and a sea mist keeps drifting in off the North Sea. It was lovely outside first thing - we could hear the local Salvation Army band playing in the distance. They always hold outdoor services once the holidaymakers start arriving. We don't make a huge thing about Easter in the josiekitten household. But I took the opportunity of being home for Easter to dig out our decorations, bought mostly in Germany and Poland. Our family in Germany always put up decorations, and as you walk around, you see lots of houses with painted wooden eggs hanging from the branches of trees. It's very pretty!

Easter 2011 011

I love these wooden eggs - they came from one of our trips to Lodz in Poland, where Mr JK's family lived for many years. Egg decorating or pysanky is an Eastern European tradition, still very much in evidence today. We saw some amazingly intricate patterns created using hot wax and dyes. You can read more about how it's done here, if you're interested.

Easter 2011 012

I finally finished my Peasy cardigan yesterday, and blocked it today. I do love it - so simple but beautiful too! I know that I'm going to get lots of wear out of it. I found some shell buttons from the Natural Dye Studio that go well with it, I think. I had to steam the bottom edge quite hard to stop it from curling, so I hope that isn't going to be a problem. Time will tell. I ended up making full length sleeves, as I had enough yarn, and am glad that I did.

Peasy (1)

Remember my spinning disaster that I blogged about recently? The single very nearly ended up in the bin after I'd over-spun it so spectacularly! There was so much twist in it, I don't quite know what went wrong! I ended up with pinky/purple fingers too!

spinning disaster (2)

Anyhow, common sense prevailed, and I wound the single into a skein (with many breakages en route!) and soaked it for a couple of hours, before hanging it up to dry with a heavy weight on it. I then wound that single into a yarn cake, and plied it from both ends, to create a 2-ply yarn. All things considered, it's turned out pretty well. The colours are very soft and delicate, reminiscent of lavender fields on a summer's day. It's about 18 wpi, so I think that's about a 2-ply laceweight, and I have approximately 250 metres to play around with.

Lavender fields handspun

I'm planning on spending time this afternoon working on Spriteling. I'd like to try and finish clue 1 today, if at all possible. So I shall love you and leave you, with one more picture of Easter in my little bloggy corner. My Easter Day breakfast - hot cross buns and English strawberries - deeeeeeelish! See you soon! xxx

Easter 2011 009

Thursday, 21 April 2011

My little haven

Hello there, hope you have been enjoying the sunshine where you are. It's been a gorgeous day here on the Norfolk coast. Mr JK and I spent most of it outside. I cleaned the decking (quite a big job as you can see from the photo) - luckily we have a power washer which certainly makes it easier, and then cleaned all the garden furniture. The umbrella was brought out from its winter hibernation in the shed, and hey presto, we're all ready for summer here in the josiekitten household!

clean decking (2)

Mr JK was busy working away in his vegetable plot. So far, the broad beans, mangetout and potatoes are in, and there's loads more ready - hopefully the onions, shallots and cabbages will go out tomorrow. He's bought a cage with butterfly netting this year, so with a bit of luck the wretched cabbage whites will be kept out!

Mr JK's veggie plot (1)

We sat on the bench drinking a cuppa, watching the local birdlife. There's Mr Blackbird, who has a bad foot. He's very friendly, and comes quite close now. There's also a robin who's a frequent visitor. We have a bird feeder in the garden, and it's always busy. We ended the day with our first barbeque of 2011. Baked potatoes, freshly picked salad leaves from the garden and this little lot - yummy!

first bbq of 2011 002

I think that it has been third time lucky with my Spriteling (knitting needles crossed, although that's probably a bad move!) I am working my way through clue 1, and have got to row 30, my best yet! Here's how it's looking - I hope that I have all of the right holes in all of the right places!

Spriteling clue 1 row 30 WIP

I'll be back soon to report on its progress! See you! xx

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Sworn enemies

Today I have decided that I am not a natural lace knitter. Lace and I are not best friends, not in the slightest! I finally cast on for the Spriteling pre-Knit Nation KAL yesterday. I did a crochet provisional cast on (something new-ish for me, but I was determined to be able to do it so that the stitches unzipped themselves this time instead of stubbornly refusing to co-operate), completed the cast on and set up sections, and all was going marvellously (or so I thought!) I learned how to do a standard lace cast off, put in a lifeline at row 10, and got to row 15 of clue 1, when on stretching out my knitting, thought that it didn't look 'quite right'. I went to the Spriteling project page on Ravelry so that I could compare my knitting with other projects. Closer inspection confirmed my worst fears - I'd gone wrong back at the start! Oh well, I thought. It could have been worse. At least I hadn't knitted too much. I pulled the knitting off the needles, rewound the yarn, and started again. This time the setting up was perfect, and I could see where I'd gone wrong before. Easy popsy! I worked my way through clue 1, stopping after row 25 for some lunch. 'Let's just take a look to see how it's looking,' I thought to myself. 'Hang on a minute - that doesn't look quite right!' I'd done a ssk in the wrong place, and in doing so, had a wobble in the border that was not acceptable to me. And of course, the error was between row 10 (where the first lifeline had been) and row 20 (where the new lifeline now resided!) I shall leave ALL lifelines in next time, just in case! I wish that I wasn't such a perfectionist, but if I spot a mistake, I have to correct it, otherwise I always know that it's there! So I'm back to square one again - yarn rewound and ready for try number 3! Let's hope it's 3rd time lucky. If not, I think that it might just get put in the naughty corner for a while. I will not be beaten! Now excuse me while I go and seek out some chocolate! xx

Spriteling grrrrrrrr

Sunday, 17 April 2011

Hat update

Just a quick post this evening to bring you an update on my Innocent Smoothie hats. I was a bit behind with my 'hat a week' knitting, so had a blitz this week. Since Royal wedding fever is rampant across the UK, I thought that I'd show a bit of patriotism with a red, white and blue collection. So here are the hats of the week for weeks 21-26. I bet we won't see any of these at Westminster Abbey!

Smoothie hats of week 21-26 (the red, white and blue collection)

Other updates on the yarn front -

  • my Peasy was finished, but since I have a spare ball of yarn (I bought an extra ball a couple of weeks ago because I was worried about running out) I'm unpicking the sleeve cast offs and making the sleeves longer! So it's not finished, but hopefully will be in the next couple of days!

  • I still haven't cast on my Spriteling, but will do so this evening, or else I can see myself getting so far behind that it won't get done!

  • I've almost finished the first of my Cinder Block socks. A couple more pattern repeats before the toe should just about do it!

  • I spun some fibre really badly this afternoon. There is sooooooooooo much twist in it it looks like super noodles!! I'm going to skein up and soak the single, and weight it while it dries to see if there is anything I can do to salvage it!

Hope you manage some knitting time this week! See you soon. xxx

Thursday, 14 April 2011

A Thursday Tah-Dah!!

Hello there, me again! I don't often get the chance to chat to you in the week, so I'm making the most of my Easter holiday 'free' time! I've just finished knitting the sweetest little cardigan. It's from Never Not Knitting. I wanted a pattern to use up my handspun, and a Ravelry search lead me to this pretty cardigan. My yarn was slightly thinner than the recommended yarn, but I swatched, and decided to stick with the original needle size, as the knitted fabric, although a little looser than it should have been, draped really nicely. Having read what other Ravelers said, I decided to knit a 3 stitch garter border at either end of the cardigan, to stop the edges from curling in. I also knit more stripes to make it longer. I teamed my handspun with some dark bluey-purple Debbie Bliss Cashmerino DK, to alternate with the stripes of handspun. I really like the rainbow effect of the stripes, don't you?

chloe  cardigan for Ida 001

It's knitted all in one, from the top, and the sleeves are put onto spare yarn to carry on knitting down the body, so there's no seaming, and very little finishing off! Perfect! It's fastened with two buttons and loops. Snoopydog and I had a good rummage through my button tin on Tuesday and picked out a few possibles. Eventually I settled on one green and one yellow to pick out the colours of the stripes at the top.

chloe  cardigan for Ida 005

The back is pretty too, with its frilled edge. I can see me knitting this again, it's such a lovely design.

chloe  cardigan for Ida 007

I'm going to go and dig out the pattern for the Spriteling KAL now. I've changed my mind about the yarn I'm using, and haven't even started clue 1 yet. Clue 2 is released tomorrow, so I've got some serious catching up to do! Bye for now! xx

Tuesday, 12 April 2011

A new spinner is born!

Hello again. Thanks for calling in. I've had a lovely day today with my great knitting pal, Snoopydog. We caught up with each other's news, admired our somewhat impressive collection of knitting bags from Three Bags Full (I blame Anne Hanson for that!!!), swapped mini skeins of sock yarn for our sock yarn blankies, drank tea, ate Danish pastries, planned our summer visit to KnitNation and, oh yes .......... Snoopydog learned the basics of spinning! I'd laid out a timeline of my handspun, starting off with the very first yarn I spun, all underspun, overspun, thick and thin, and ending up with my most recent yarn. It's amazing to see the progress I've made. Anyway, I showed Snoops how to draft the fibre, gave her some BFL, and off she went!

snoopydog learns to spin (1)

Fairly quickly, she'd produced two bobbins of yarn ....

snoopydog learns to spin (3)

....that she then plied together to produce her first ever skein of handspun yarn! Tah dah!!

snoopydog learns to spin (6)

I can see a new, addictive hobby developing here! Another stash for Snoops to acquire! It was great fun and I look forward to days spent spinning together!

I received another squishy parcel too - this time from Rosie's Moments. The parcel arrived beautifully wrapped, it was just like opening a present!

oops another squishy parcel (2)

As well as the collection of mini skeins for my sock yarn blankie, I bought two braids of BFL, dyed with natural dyes. I loved the colour combinations she used, and want to spin it up to knit myself a Citron shawl. Don't you just love these colours?

oops another squishy parcel (4)

Rosie included a lovely sheep button in the parcel, what a nice touch!

oops another squishy parcel (1)

I shall definitely be popping back to her Etsy shop again!

Before I go, I must just tell you about a wonderful giveaway on my Ravelry friend, Melissa's blog. If you make a donation to help fight cancer, you'll be entered into a draw to win not one, not two, but three skeins of Malabrigo yarn! How fantastic is that? Not only are you doing something worthwhile, but you might win some yarn too! See you soon! xxx

Monday, 11 April 2011

Woolly distractions

I've got lots of yarny goodness to share with you this afternoon, so I do hope you're sitting comfortably. Good - then I'll begin!

I've been busy spinning over the past two weeks, trying to do a little each day. It's very relaxing after a day at school! The first fibre I spun up was a Falkland fibre that I received in a swap with CathyA in Canada. The colourway is called Grape Crush, and it comes from Waterloo Wools. Because the fibre was painted randomly, I decided to spin it as one long single and then Navajo-ply it, to try to keep the colour changes together. I used this video to help me - she certainly makes it look effortlessly simple! I just love how the colours have worked out, and am really pleased with the finished yarn. I've got about 200 metres of dk yarn to play with!

Grape Crush handspun

The second lot of fibre I've just finished spinning is from The Thylacine. I love the colours Megan uses. This fibre is a mix of 70% BFL and 30% silk, and feels quite luxurious. I split the yarn lenghtways down the middle, and spun each half separately. I then plied them together to get 275 metres of fingering weight yarn. I think this is destined to become an Ishbel for a relative of Mr JK's, when we stay with her in Munich this summer.

Barilla Bay handspun

The first of my Cinder Block socks is well underway. I knit a good chunk of it on the train last Saturday. I'm using a yarn from Laughing Yaffle called Winter Berries. I thought it was going to be more solid than it's turning out to be - I like how it looks on the heel, but am not so keen on the stripes, but I might pass them onto Mr JK if I really don't fancy them when they're done.

Cinder Blocks WIP (2)

My Peasy is so close to completion! I really should have finished it today, but I got distracted! I have cast off, and all that's left to do now is the bands up the fronts and round the neck. I've been putting it off all day, as picking up stitches is not my most favourite part of knitting! Perhaps I'll get myself in gear this evening. The knitting that distracted me is this!

Chloe WIP 002

I'm knitting this short sleeved summer cardigan for a colleague's daughter, using some Debbie Bliss cashmerino DK and my own handspun!! It's knitted all in one, so the stripes on the body follow round onto the sleeves too. My yarn isn't quite the same thickness as the recommended yarn, but I've swatched and hope that all will turn out right in the end! It's quite exciting knitting up yarn that you've actually spun yourself!

It's confession time now. I know that I'm on a (self-imposed) yarn diet, but a squishy parcel arrived this morning!! I bought two skeins of yarn from Socktopus. Last Sunday, Alice had some yarn for sale in her shop. Mr JK and I were out, and I didn't think for one minute that there'd be any yarn left later in the day. So when I popped in to check, I was delighted to find several skeins of yarn just calling out to me. It was meant to be, I think! I ended up with a skein of Sokkusu-L in the shade Grapegeuse. It's a gorgeous deep purple colour, and I'm going to use it for my Spriteling. (Which reminds me, I need to get a move on and knit clue 1, as clue 2 will be released on Friday!)

new stash (3)

I also bought a skein of Sokkusu-X in the shade Robin's Egg Blue. This yarn is a mix of merino, cashmere and nylon, and I think it will become a pair of cosy socks for next winter. I just love the colour!

new stash (1)

I also received some fibre last week, from FeltStudioUK. I wanted a batt of yarn to use for some corespinning, and chose this one. The colours are so pretty, and it has sparkly bits in it too!

FeltStudioUK fibre and batts (10)

Along with that, there were a couple of braids of fibre, but I'll show you those once they're spun. Mr JK asked me how these purchases fitted into a yarn diet, so I pointed out that yarn is different from fibre!! Talking of fibre, Mr JK and I are heading up to the Lake District in June for Woolfest. It sounds wonderful, and was recommended to me by Vikki when I was on my spinning weekend. Mr JK is going to do 'man things' while I'm at Woolfest on the Saturday, and then we'll meander our way back to Norfolk on the Sunday. So, Woolfest and KnitNation within a month of each other! I'd better start saving up my pennies!

Right, that's me done for now. Snoopydog is coming up tomorrow, so there will be much drinking of tea, eating cake, chatting, knitting, yarn fondling and maybe even some spinning going on! Call back soon to see what we got up to! Bye for now. xx

Sunday, 10 April 2011

A grand day out

Good morning! It's a lovely sunny day here in North Norfolk, so I thought I'd pop in to tell you about our trip to London yesterday before I busy myself with 'jobs'! We had an early start, leaving home just before 7am, but were soon settled on the train. I had my Cinder Block socks to keep me company, along with a hot bacon roll. Yum yum!

London April 2011 001

Once in London, we took the Underground a couple of stops, before getting off at St Paul's to walk in the spring sunshine. The dome of St Paul's looked magnificent against the fresh green leaves.

London April 2011 004

I could hear the sound of a piano being played - you can imagine my surprise when behind a London bus appeared a pianist on a bicycle! Taking street entertaining literally! You certainly see it all in London!

London April 2011 005

We walked across the Millennium Bridge to go and visit the Tate Modern. Luckily the dangerous swaying problems are long gone, and plenty of people were crossing.

London April 2011 015

Neither Mr JK nor I had been to this gallery before. Modern art isn't especially my 'thing', but it's somewhere that I've wanted to visit for a long time. I do find it odd what's considered to be 'art' - an octagon of white paper glued to the wall, a throwaway battery still in its packaging! Oh well, it takes all sorts! I did manage to sniff out some knitting-related art by the Italian sculptor Marisa Merz. She often includes crafts traditionally associated with women in her work.

London April 2011 023

We admired, from above, the sunflowers seeds created by the Chinese artist, Ai Weiwei. It's incredible to think that each one of the millions of porcelain sunflower seeds has been hand-crafted. Visitors used to be able to walk over them, until it was discovered that they had been decorated with paint containing lead, and that walking on them might cause the release of tiny particles of lead dust into the air. But just looking at them was quite amazing!

London April 2011 027

We headed to Borough market for lunch, and enjoyed traditional British food - fish, chips and mushy peas at Fish! What could be better? The beer batter was so light, it was delicious!

London April 2011 030

After lunch we wandered around Borough market - it's a busy, vibrant place, packed with stalls selling food from around the world. Mr JK was delighted to find a German deli selling Teewurst, and an artisan bread stall selling authentic German bread. Guess what he ate for breakfast this morning?! We left the bustle of the market to walk along the side of the river, past Shakeseare's Globe theatre ......

London April 2011 040

and back to the Tate Modern, where I admired the beautiful walkway of trees. They seemed rather magical to me.

London April 2011 043

What a great way to start the holidays! I'll see you again soon with some yarn-related stuff! I have lots to show you! Enjoy your day! xxx

Friday, 8 April 2011

What a hoot!

Hello there! A quick post to celebrate the end of term and the start of the school Easter holidays! It's been a long old term, and I've felt extremely tired for the past couple of weeks. Stretching ahead of me are two weeks of relaxation. I can't wait. I have several knitting and spinning projects planned, but am just looking forward to some totally self-indulgent 'me' time! We aren't going away, but have the odd day out planned. Tomorrow Mr JK and I are taking the train down to London. Fingers crossed that the weather stays as gorgeous as it is now - blue skies and plenty of sunshine!

My knitting club at school held the last session of the term today, and I'm pleased to say that the last of the little owls was finished, and all are ready to fly off to their new homes. The project took longer than I'd planned, partly because of the number of children (21) and only me there to help them, and also the shortness of our lunch time. We only have 45 minutes, so the children have to eat lunch in that time as well as knit! But all of them stuck at it, and the final wing was sewn on today. So with a great ta-dah, here they are in all their glory!!

knitting club owls

I feel quite proud of the children that they have all managed to achieve something, and I hope that I may have inspired some of them to become our next generation of knitters! I still have the first thing I knitted many years ago - a little yellow and green scarf for my teddy. I wonder how many of these little owls will be around in 30 to 40 years time?! Do you still have something you knitted when you were little? I'd love to know what it is! Bye for now! xx

Monday, 4 April 2011

Bloggy friends

The blogging world is a strange one. You share details of your life with your bloggy friends, yet you would walk past them on the street without knowing them! So it was a real delight when one of my Ravelry and blogging friends, Julia, got in touch to see if I was interested in doing a swap with her. I've enjoyed taking part in several swaps on Ravelry - it's fun getting to know your partner a little better, to pick out gifts you think they'll like. We decided to swap some yarn, some fibre and a small knitted item, and so the hunt for swap goodies began!

I found the perfect skein of yarn in my LYS - a skein from the Natural Dye Studio in soft greens and purples. Fibre was quite easy too - I ended up choosing some batts from Juno Fibre Arts - a mix of BFL and tussah silk in purple, blue and brown. Julia likes spinning batts, and I thought these colours were very pretty. I wanted to knit my current favourite 'gift' knitting pattern - the Cabled Keyhole scarf from Anne Hanson. It's a really simple scarf that keeps your neck nice and warm, but without the bulk of a larger scarf. I used another yarn from the Natural Dye Studio - Dazzle DK yarn in shades of pink. I knitted myself the same pattern in the same yarn earlier this year, and it's had lots of wear! The symbol on Julia's blog is an owl, and she's used owl buttons on some of her knits in the past, so I wanted to send her something owl related. A quick search on Etsy found a wonderful fabric shop in the USA, and some owl fabric arrived very quickly! I made a knitting project drawstring bag, complete with 'handmade by josiekitten' label! My Mum wasn't a sewer, so I'm self-taught, and am really still at the early stages. But it was fun to practise on the gift and I was pleased with how it turned out! A couple of chocolate Aero sheep and a local handmade soap completed the parcel.

swap with Julia 017

We posted our parcels on the same day, and four days later, Julia's parcel arrived here in the UK. A week later, my package made it to Germany! We had agreed that we would open them at the same time, so I had to sit looking at this most enticing parcel, teasing me! I had given it a shake and a squeeze, but it didn't give anything away! So on Saturday lunchtime, me in Norfolk, and Julia in Munich, we opened our parcels!

Where to begin?! The first thing I unwrapped was a beautiful, handspun, handknit shawlette in very pretty spring flower shades. It's already been worn! Some oh so soft BFL fibre from Zauberwiese, along with some sparkly purple yarn dyed especially for me! I feel so important!! Some chocolate sheep and some Gummy Bears sweets (Mr JK loves these!), some Euclan for soaking my handspun yarn, some heart charms to sew onto my knitting, a little candle and some plant labels for the garden - all of these were packed into this fabulous parcel! Take a look!

swap with julia (2)

Thank you so, so much Julia for your wonderful gifts. I loved doing the swap with you, and hope it will be the first of many. (And be warned - Mr JK and I shall be in Munich in July this year, so we may come and see you!!!!) Here's to bloggy friendships all around the world - I wouldn't be without them! See you soon! xxx

Sunday, 3 April 2011

Your knitting and crochet time - 2KCBWDAY7


Write about your typical crafting time. When it is that you are likely to craft - alone or in more social environments, when watching TV or whilst taking bus journeys. What items do you like to surround yourself with whilst you twirl your hook like a majorette's baton or work those needles like a skilled set of samurai swords. Do you always have snacks to hand, or are you a strictly 'no crumbs near my yarn!' kind of knitter?

I always carry knitting around with me. I'd hate to get caught out and miss an opportunity to knit! My handbag has my latest sock project in it, or if it's a more complicated sock, I usually have a 'plain vanilla' pair on the go too for someone else. I will knit anywhere, and ignore any 'looks' that might get thrown my way! Generally, when Mr JK and I are out and about, he does the driving, so knitting always accompanies me on car journeys. I've even pinched the clip-on light from Mr JK's music stand, so that I can knit in the dark whilst in the car!! There's dedication for you! If it's a pattern that I need to concentrate on, I prefer it to be quiet. Otherwise the radio is generally on (or occasionally the TV, though neither of us is a great TV watcher), or when I'm spinning, it's Classic FM. It's soothing and rhythmical, perfect for treadling! A mug of steaming hot Yorkshire tea is also there, a mini bar of Green and Black's chocolate (butterscotch and ginger are my favourites!) and until recently, a furry being snuggled up close (sometimes too close!). I'm missing that big time.

henrycat helps knit 004

When I'm at knitting group, I tend to knit something more straightforward, so I can chat, drink tea and eat cake! I don't normally knit before work, unless I've got loads of spare time (pretty unusual!) or I've got a stressy day ahead and need to relax. But it is almost unheard of for a whole day to pass with no knitting time at all, even if I only manage a couple of rows. I can't imagine not knitting. What did I do with my time, back in the days when I didn't knit, I wonder?

This is my last post in the 2nd annual Knitting and Crochet Blog Week, so normal posting will resume after today. It's been great fun, thinking about specifics to do with knitting, and also visiting a whole load of new blogs. Big thanks to Eskimi for organising the whole thing.

Saturday, 2 April 2011

Something to aspire to - 2KCBWDAY6


Is there a pattern or skill that you don't yet feel ready to tackle but which you hope to (or think you can only dream of) tackling in the future, near or distant? Is there a skill or project that makes your mind boggle at the sheer time, dedication and mastery of the craft? Maybe the skill or pattern is one that you don't even personally want to make but can stand back and admire those that do. Maybe it is something you think you will never be bothered to actually make but can admire the result of those that have.

I haven't knitted a lot of lace since I started knitting again. Two reasons, I think. The first is that I'm not a great shawl wearer - I don't quite know what to do with them or how to wear them!! The second reason is CHARTS! I look at them and I'm baffled! It's like some secret knitting language that I've somehow missed out on learning. How can there be 'no stitch' on a row? It doesn't make sense to me. I like my patterns written out row by row. However, I have set myself a challenge - to become more comfortable knitting from charts. I've signed up for a pre KnitNation KAL to make a shawl. The first clue was released yesterday, and I've printed it out! Even though the pattern is written as well as charted, I'm determined to use the charts as much as I can. I used the chart for the swatch without too much cursing! I'm going to buy myself a magnetic board so that I can keep track of which row I'm on, and wait until the school holidays start before casting on! Wish me luck!

charts! 005

How about you? Do you prefer knitting from charts or a written pattern? And how do you wear your shawl? All fashion tips gratefully received!

Friday, 1 April 2011

And now for something completely different - 2KCBWDAY5


This is an experimental blogging day to try to push your creativity in blogging to the same level that you perhaps push your creativity in the items you create. There are no rules of a topic to blog about but this post should look at a different way to present content on your blog.

The Ballad of old Knitwear

(To be sung to the tune of 'When I'm Sixty-Four', with apologies to The Beatles!)

When I get older, losing my shape

Many years from now

Will you still be wearing me the way that you do

Pilled and felted, wearing thin too?

Will all the love that you put into me

Still be in your heart

Will you still need me, will you still love me

Though I'm falling apart?

When all the new things you knit are so cool

Will I be cast aside?

Will you still wear me, love me and care for me

Or will I have to hide?

sock casualty 001