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Nobody asks

I've been knitting in public since 2008, when I made a pair of socks and took them to trivia with me. When i started knitting in public I felt like people where always asking me what i was knitting. random strangers on trams would stare at me, friends would ask - either, "what are you knitting", or the more freaked out "are you knitting". Now, the only question my friends have is "where is the knitting?" if I happen to not be knitting.
I tell this story because, as you know, I recently knit Raph a birthday present:

In the couple of weeks it took I saw Raph three times - the last time was at him house, and I had left my bag on the bench. i asked him to grab  my knitting out, and he said "I was surprised you weren't knitting". So there is was, hidden in plain sight. 


Work in progress Wednesday - Strathendrick

I wanted to knit Kate Davie's Strathendrick since the moment I saw it, in January this year. I bought the yarn in March at Edinburgh Yarn Fest, swatched in May and last Thursday I was finally ready to cast on. I was a tiny bit scared, because it's the size of Boxy, and starts with a provisional cast on of 400+ stitches (join being careful not to twist...). Now that I've been knitting it for (nearly) a week, I know two things:

1) The knitting is rhythmic, soothing and once set up simple enough to knit in public 



2) This is addictive. It's no secret that I think about knitting ALL THE TIME, but this is even more extreme than usual. I just want to knit one more stitch, all the time. i would say one more row, but at 400+ colourwork stitches a round takes a while. But it's so addictive. 

I am loving the way the yarn (Tukuwool fingering from finland) and the pattern go together.

This is one repeat done. I'm really looking forward to the next repeat, because the patternin…

A snood

In the end I solved the problem of how to do the colours on Raph's cowl by realising that, it I knit it to the prescribed 52 centimeters in the yarn I was using, it would be utterly ridiculous. I stopped after I had done one stripe in each colour, and it's still pretty strange.

Leon was kind enough to model it for me. 

I don't really know what to say about this project. It was a fun simple knit. i think the Milorrachy tweed colours look really good together, but it does look a bit like a ruff.

Still, it will definitly keep Raph's ears and neck warm while he walks the dogs, it's still winter, and his birthday is next week. I'll try to get some pictures modeled by him when I give it to him on him birthday next week.




It's a wrap!

I finished Gloamin-Tide mkal and I'm really happy with it. The process was really fun - a mystery shawl with quite a lot of mystery, variety in each clue, active Ravelry forums and lots of posting on instagram.

I really like the way my colours came out, although I like pretty much everyone else's colours too, even the ones who did not follow the suggestion of using "a subtle fade".

The shape is a shallow triangle. I finished this on Sunday night, and it was blocking at home when Chris, one of the Richmond knitters, walked in wearing a similarly shaped shawl, point down, frothing down her chest like a lace waterfall. I realised that's the perfect way to wear this one too.



Do you like the creepy babies on the wall mural? Apparently it's by a famous St Kilda artist, but I think they are just super creepy. 



And finally, I have 60 grams of yarn left over from the three colours, which happens to be exactly the amount of yarn I need to make a matching pair of socks. Co-…

I could have thought that out better

The other week Raph came to the pub and asked if I would make him "a snood" for next winter. After a bit of conversation, I realised he meant a cowl. I've had this conversation before - I consider a snood as a hair covering for medieval women. Anyway, he struggles to keep scarves on, because he has a large neck, so he wanted a cowl. I refrained from telling him that if a scarf was long enough it would stay on fine.It's his birthday in a couple of weeks, so I figured why wait?
 I came home looked at some patterns and decided to make Martina Behm's Wolking, using the sample Milarrochy Tweed from the Kate Davies Club

I added 20 stitches to the pattern to accommodate his size, and started knitting. I thought I would use half of each colour until I hit the middle, and then knit the same sequence out. What i should have done at this point was to weigh how much a row takes. I didn't. Part way through I realised that I wasn't going to have enough yarn to knit each …

Doing my head in

When I started the Gloamin-Tide mkal, I knew that I would also be knitting other projects as I went along. As a normally monogamous knitter, I thought it would be a good experiment. The next project I'm doing is a huge colourwork jumper (Strathendick) and having something small and simple on the go at the same time would be the sensible thing to do. So, at the end of the final week of the mkal, how do I feel about having two active projects on the go?

Not so good. It was pretty much okay the first few weeks - I knit the Gloamin-Tide cluefor between two and four days, and then knit other things - quite a few other things, including a Carbeth, a pair of socks, a baby jumper a hat and a bathmatt. And then I cast on the Wolking cowl . This week I've only been working on Glaomin-Tide, and I'm not sure what I'm doing with the colours on Wolkin and I can't address that, because I'm knitting Gloamin-Tide. I feel like my energy is really split. It's good to know, and…

Once apon a sock - looking backwards and forwards

This month I can't talk about socks that I've knit, because it was a sadly sock free month. I did have two dramas:

A pair of Tardis socks I knit for Leon in December 2012. It might be darnable, but the thinning goes all the way round the back. Also, I used up all my blue sock yarn scraps. Oops.

I also got  a hole in both of these lovelies. Spindle spun in super soft merino, and knitted in 2010, before I knew better, it's surprising they lasted this long.I think I've got some of the original yarn in the stash box, so I'll darn them again, even through they are quite worn and pilled now.

In future sock knitting joy, at the Sheep Show I bought a pair of two millimeter ChiaGo DPNs. I'm pretty excited about them - my HiyaHiya sharps are good, but they are very, very sharp, so I'm excited to be able to compare, and also to possibly make tandem socks.


As I like to do on the first Thursday of the month, I'm linking up with Paula, of Spin a yarn. I love seeing every…

Yarnalong - the one with Gloamin Tide spoilers

I made sure that in the thumb nail picture you can't see the shape of the shawl. I've just started clue six - the final clue in Ysolda's mystery shawl knit-along. I haven't even sneeked a peak at any of the clues until I have finished knitting them, and managed to avoid spoilers. Here's the full shawl after clue five:



Only one more to go, but quite a bit more knitting. This has been such a fun project, and now I can see how its going to look it's very satisfying.

After finishing Jojo Moyes' Silver Bay, and hating it so much (my review is here if you are interested) I really wanted to read something fun and fast. Ian Banks' Complicityfit the bill. It's a thriller / mystery / who done it / romp and I can't stop reading it. Such a pleasure to read a book that i don't want to put down, even if some of the subject matter is rather dark. 

I'm joining in with Ginny and the monthly yarnalong. I recommend popping over to her blog to see what everyon…

Bathmat IX

I finished the Left Over Sock Yarn bathmat I mentioned the other day. It was a really fun - and surprisingly quick project, although i suppose holding 7 strands of yarn together , and using a 6.5mm needle is likely to have that affect.
This pic was taken outside blocking, and really shows the colours:

I love the ombre  effect, although I still can't believe I had THAT much left over sock yarn in blues. Over half a kilogram of them.
This pic was taken in situ, in the bathroom. \I love my bathroom, but it doesn't have any natural light, hence the glare of the heat lamps. I love my heat lamps.

It was also quite fun to be crocheting for a change. I haven't picked up the hook for anything bigger than a cat toy since early 2017, and I do enjoy it. All around a very satisfing project.

A hat - whether he wants one or not

A couple of weeks ago my friend Grant showed up to the pub wearing SHOCK a commercially knit hat. It was fine, but it had a seam on the top. Also, it offends me that anyone I'm close to would be wearing a commercial hat. So, I knit a hat (out of leftovers from Leon's winter set., using this broken rib pattern.
When I gave it to him he seemed very pleased. I didn't tell him that it was a one-day-wonder. i cast on on the tram on the way to my lift to Bendigo, knitted on the ride up, knitted through the Women of Wool lunch, knitted in the car back, knitted at my parents place at dinner and finished up before bed time.
Look at that decrease! I love hat crowns, they always look so interesting to me.
I tried to get good pictures, but we were at the pub and things were going on, and these will just have to do. I do enjoy showing my love through my craft.

How did this happen?

I was tooling around on Ravelry, looking for bathmatt patterns, when I found this pattern.
Hmm, crotchet, colour blending, I wonder what my sock yarn scrap stash is looking like? When I went to investigate, I discovered I have an absolutely bizarre amount of left over sock yarn in blues, especially navy.
I also pulled my Cloud out of the wash and realised it's kind of dead. As well as being stretched out, it had what looked suspiciously like coffee stains on the front. 

So, I've rescued some of that yarn and, combined with the strange amount of blue sock yarn (where did it all come from?) I'm going to crotchet this bath matt. I'm pretty excited, colour blending really is a lot of fun, which might be why I keep on doing it!




Back from Bendigo 2018

I was spoilt this year and got a lift to Bendigo with Nat. I quickly did my shopping before the Women of Wool lunch:

I'm really pleased with this wool I bought for Leon's jumper:

It's from North East Yarn a fibre collective from the North East of Victoria. I said I wanted to buy more local yarn! Because they well by weight in 500g hanks, and don't know the yardage, I didn't want to risk running out, so I bough a kilogram. If there is enoug left-overs for a jumper for me as well I won't complain!

I bought some Oyster yarns in merino silk and yak, which is just stunning,

and this jumped into my bag:

A jumpers worth of sparkle yarn from My Creative Garage. I hadn't heard of her before, but her colour pallete was amazing. I'm not sure exactly what I'm going to make with it - make 



Lunch with Women of Wool and the Richmond Knitters was a good time, as usual. As well as the women I knew, there were two sheep farmers at our table. The people who produce the wool…

Bendigo 2018

I'm a bit excited, because I'm actually going to the Australian Sheep and Wool show this year. I've even got a lift up, in a car! Last year I missed out, because I spent the weekend in Tasmania. Can't complain.



Just like in 2016 I'm going to the Women in Wool lunch, and I have to be back for dinner, so I'll have to be efficient with  my shopping time. There are a few projects I definitely want to buy yarn for -  Joji's Cathedral wrap, Leon's winter set and a new jumper for Leon. I have a feeling some other things might creep in there. I do like to shop in a focused way, but I also really want to support Australian growers and dyers, after giving significant support to UK wool and dyers just four months ago! Surprisingly to me, given I bought 5 kilometers of yarn then, and I have bought yarn for two other projects since I got back, stashcount is currently at 13,000. Not too bad at all, although I may "fix" that tomorrow!

Baby cuteness, with minor drama

Two Fridays ago I went back to my old workplace for the retirement of one of the big bosses, and I bumped into Katrina,  my last manager there - who had a bump of her own. She said she was off on parental leave next Friday. I didn't give it much thought, but then i bumped into my boss from one of my previous roles, and  he's had another baby. I actually new that, and wasn't surprised when he pulled out his phone to show me a photo. I was quite pleased when the new baby was wearing the Snug that I made for the first baby, in 2013. That got me thinking, and I decided to knit a baby jumper for Katrina. I had two weeks, which should have been plenty, but In also wanted to get the Gloamin-tide clue finished first.

Anyway, I knit a Drops pattern, which came out very cute. It did have about a thousand ends, but I think it's worth it. 

I had the perfect buttons, but after I started sewing them on I realised I had six buttons, and seven button holes. After deciding that I really …

SWAP!

My sock yarn swap yarn came today! It's so fun, 18 tiny little skeins of yarn from around the world. This has been a really fun experience, and I've fallen in love with mini-skeins, although I won't be buying them because I still have loads of left over sock yarn. (In fact, tune in later this week for some shocking news about left over sock yarn.)

I'm going to try to convince Leon to ball them up while we watch a movie this afternoon, and then I'll add them to my sock yarn blanket - maybe then the blanket will be finished. I don't know how to tell.

Gloamin tide clue three - half way there and feeling fine

At the end of clue two, we added a weird tail and set aside the knitting.
Clue three happened on a different needle, and made this interesting arrow shaped piece. I guess how they are going to come together is the mystery here! 

We are half way through, and I have used significantly less than half the yarn. Maybe I
ll have enough left over for a pair of socks, or a hat. This was a bigger week,a and it has taken me four days to knit the clue - the previous clues took me two days each. 
This one ended up looking like this: a rather interesting rams head shape!

The main thing thought is that I am having fun. The knitting is interesting, I'm already looking forward to getting my clue next Monday night, I'm chattier on Ravelry than I've been in a long time. How these are going to add up into a shawl is quite the mystery!
I am, of course, hoping for a shawl I'll wear all the time, but even if I don't love the shape of the finished item - which is still a complete mystery to me…

Wanida

Wanida by Cookie A was such a dream to knit for me. Cookie A was clearly designing on DPNs, which is how I knit my socks. Each pattern repeat is sixteen stitches. Very simple, very fun.

I knit these on the 2mm HiyaHiya's I picked up in Scotland, and I have to say these pointy, pointy tiny needles are working well for me. They seem to be bending just a tiny bit, but I have knit 5 pairs of socks on them (since April. That actually surprised me quite a lot when I looked it up. I'd better slow down on the socks).

I also enjoyed knitting these while wearing Boxy (I made these from from leftovers of that wonderful jumper) and tomorrow I am going to wear them together, and it will satisfy something deep in my soul to be so very matchy matchy.

Toys and gifts and fun

As a joke, Raph asked if I would make him this medusa hat. Looking at it, I fell down a bit of a rabbit-hole, and found a pattern for snakes. I decided it was too fun not to knit a couple, and knit 3 of them - I  actually knit them during workplace harm training, so at least something productive came of that day.


I think they liked them!


All of that gave me an idea - it was Elise's birthday on Saturday, so I crotchetted her an ice-cream. She looked a bit blank, but I explained it was also a cat toy, so that made sense to her.


It was fun making whimsical toys and fripperies for a change, rather than huge jumpers and complex socks.






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