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Showing posts from November, 2019

In and out, up and down (II)

Yarn, it flows in and out of my stash. I buy it, I use it, I get given it, I win it, I give it away. There is a sort of trade that goes on at the Richmond Knitters. A few months ago I was worried about running out of yarn for my blanket and my friends gave me loads of their leftovers. There are leftover from the leftovers, and Katherine mentioned the other day that she is going to crochet a blanket, and will be using any size of leftovers, so I packed up 200 grams of left-over left-overs for her. When I got to Monday night knit night, Louisa was crocheting a blanket and she wanted soft colours, so I let her go through my leftovers. she said she had heaps of brights, so next time she comes I'm going to pull out as many gentle colours as I can, and she'll bring me some of her leftovers. Of course, once I've knit a blanket square with each colour I will pass the left-over-left-overs on. 

 Then one Monday Jane brought in some Tofuties, because she is allergic to it. I have plen…

Unravelled Wedneday - the one with the buttons and ALL the ends

I put aside the Kildalton cardigan for most of this week, because I decided to make another baby jumper for Olivia, this one a Baby Surprise Jacket. I over-dyed some of the sock yarn Kris gave me last year because it had pink in it and some people don't like that for boys, and paired it with some navy based self striping. I do love me a BSJ.

 It just needs buttons and the ends sewn in, although I discovered I don't have any suitable buttons. I have an extensive button stash, inherited from my grandmother, but nothing suitable. 

 I'm almost finished Kildalton, just the end of the second sleeve and then buttons. I did find some nice buttons in the stash for this, which makes me very happy. This week I read the most fabulous fantasy novel: The Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin. It was so good it made me want to take a star off every other book I've ever read, just so this can stand out. It's the first in a trilogy, but I don't normally read series in a row, so i read a …

Having the right tools helps

It felt a little indulgent, buying a polystyrene head mainly to block a couple of kippot, but it made such a difference:

The weird pointy shape of the single crotchet (US) one was mitigated, and the too straight edges of the double crotchet one developed a much better shape:

I'v got one more to do, and I've done a bit of research, that suggests that the pointiness is due to either a too small hook, or not enough increases so I'm going to try again, but using a 3.5mm hook, rather than the 3mm hook I used here. These have been a super fun experiment, and I always enjoy my period forays into crotchet.

A finished hat and the rest of the bag update

I wanted to use up the 50 grams of 12 ply I had left over from Olivia's baby jumper, so I decided to make a charity hat. Woolley Wormhead has a very interesting side-ways knit hat, and I striped it up to make the yarn go the distance.

It gave me a chance to use the larger Joji and Co BA bag:

and I love it. It's pretty roomy, I'll be interested to see how much yarn is actually comfortably fits, and it's really good to work from, because the top zips up trapping the ball inside. Because it's thinner (that my beloved Fringe Field Bag) footprint, it sits comfortably on my lap. I love the depth of colour, and the quality of the lining. We'll see how it wears, because I do wear my knitting bags - I take them with me every-were I go, so lots of pubs, restaurants, public transport, and every day life, which can get messy. But so far I'm loving this. 

 As for the hat, it was a lot of fun to knit - it's Woolley Wormhead's Sideways Bobble Hat. as the name suggest…

Unravelled Wednesday - the one with small things and big things

This week I've read a couple of small things, including The final of Martha Well's fabulous Murderbot series of novellas. Luckily there is a full length novel coming out next year, otherwise I'd be very sad to have finished. They were a really good read. Then I read a short story, from NetGalley calledThe Weddings, by Alexander Chee which was a pretty good read. It only took me about an hour, but the story raised some big issues. You can see my full review here.

Too many short stories do my head in though. I like to get really immersed in a book's world, so I started The Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin which so far is very interesting, with some serious world-building going on. I'm just at the very beginning of this fairly epic fantasy trillogy. Leon read all three series in a row, and recommended them, so I think it will be good.

I've been knitting something big (ish) - my Kildalton cardigan. I really like the way the the cables pop. I'm part way through the…

Why Kate Davies, why? (a rant)

Kate Davies is one of my very favourite designers. I have knit about 40 of her pattern over the years, and I generally like the way she writes her patterns. But sometimes she annoys the crap out of me. 

I'm putting the button band of Kildalton and once again, I have to work out the ratios for myself because the pattern just gives a number, and I cropped it. As I ranted last time, just giving a number makes everything more difficult than giving a ratio. Also, there is no selve-edge stitch, and the cable goes right up to the edge, which means that the stitches are picked up from a wavy edge. I thought that was odd while I was doing the knitting, but made the mistake of trusting the pattern.

All of that said, look how pretty those cables are. It's going to be a fabulous addition to my wardrobe - once I finish the button band and sleeves, so a little while to go yet, but putting aside my rant, it is a very enjoyable knit, and a well written pattern.

Crotchet and a (bit of a) bag review

My Kildalton cardigan is coming along, nicely but it is big, and lives in a big bag, and has three charts.I can cram it into my bicycle pannier, but it's only worth doing it I have significant knitting time.

I wanted a small project that I could throw in a small bag just in case. In case of what, you may ask? In case I get stuck in a lift, and get unexpected knitting time. Or for when I'm going out for coffee with my boss, or I'm in the waiting room at the physio. Enough time to get a bit done, but not worth carrying around a huge cardigan, opening a chart, starting a long row. So I cast on for a kippah. I'm planning on making three of these as channukah gifts - two in black and red for my brother and nephew (it's Essendon football team colours) and one in multi coloured self striping for my father. I finished the first one during the week. Here it is, in need of a good blocking! I've ordered a polystyrene head because I think that's going to be the best way…

Unravelled Wednesday - the one where everything is B+

I dislike the way everything (on the internet at least) has to be either 5 stars - GREAT FANTASTIC BEST EVER or 1 star TERRIBLE THE WORST. I think it's okay that sometimes things are just solid. And that's how my week has been.

In knitting I'm working away on Kildalton. It has lots of cables, but once they are set up they are fairly intuitive. I've divided for the backs and fronts, and finished the right front, so it's not a slow knit. Of course, making cropped garments is always a recipe for fast. In reading I'm reading a Netgalley book again - The Misfortunes of Family by Meg Little Reilly.

It a really solid read. A well written, interesting novel about family, what it means to belong and the trappings of privilege. I won't be raving to my friends that they HAVE to read this, but I'm certainly enjoying it, and looking forward to seeing where it is going. 

And that's my week. Solid, enjoyable, full of cables and novels. I'm linking up with Kat fr…

The Richmond Knitters Post sOctober celebration

This year Sonia (the founder of the Richmond Knitters) organised a content for sOctober - or Socktober, as everyone except me likes to call it. The categories were:

I was fortunate enough to win in two categories, one for most creative Ava patterned socks, and one for any socks made with HalfDyed handbaked yarn. The prizes were all ridiculously lovely sock yarn, donated by Sonia. I feel particularity lucky, because the first yarn I got was this:

It's Skein yarn "Bendigo or Bust" which they dyed for Bendigo this year, and by the time I wandered over to their stall at 2pm on the Saturday, it was all gone.

I also got this skein of Half-Baked Handdyed yarn, which seems fitting and it stunning.

It was a very fun month. Now, lets see if I can resist knitting any socks at all for the next month or two.

Thanks to Sonia for organising, donating and all she does for the Richmond Knitters.

Snug as a bug in a (big) rug

Last Friday I was getting my next project ready to start. I got out the yarn, which I had ordered 6 weeks before, and was joking with Leon about how weird it would be to knit on six millimetre needles, after a full month knitting socks on 2mm needles. "Hold up" says Leon, do you have 6mm needles". "Sure I replied, I bought the Chiaogoo set that goes up to 6mm". And then I got a bad feeling, and checked, and found out I have the Chiaogoo set that goes up to 5mm". Luckily we were meeting Kris that night, and she brought me, and lent me the 6mm needles. What a lifesaver.

After that dramatic pre-start, the knitting was pretty straightforward and fun, and only took three days, although it was a glorious three days, including a trip to our local, a very rainy homebound Saturday and visit to a brewery on Sunday. 
The jumper is quite large, but the baby this is for is going to be born in late November, so I figure it's for next winter. 

Wondering what the tag at…

Once upon a sock - sOctober edition

I didn't think of taking a photo of all my sOctober socks together until I was pulling them out of the wash last night, so here is a picture of 5 pairs of wet socks:


I guess my plan to half-arse sOctober, and not be all socks all the time did not succeed! I reused the same yarns for some of the socks, so there are two pairs with Half-Baked Handdyed self stripping, two with glitter yarn and two with the grey Socks Yeah. This does take my total for 2019 to 15 pairs of socks, but I think there won't be any more this year, so that's not too much of an overshoot. And here's another photo of the month's efforts drying o the line:
As usual on the first Thursday of the month I'm linking up with Once Upon a Sock. Click on through to see what the rest of the crew did with their sOcotober.

Unravelled Wednesday and Yarnalong Too - The one where it is November already

What a week it's been! Last Wednesday off work for Harry Porter and the Cursed Child, (which was amazing) this Tuesday a public holiday for a stupid horse race (but I'll take the public holiday)  and lots of knitting in between.

With sOctober finished,  I've actually knit something that isn't socks - a baby jumper on 6mm needles. It's blocking right now, so I'll be back with a full report and pictures later in the week.

Then I cast on Kate Davies Kildalton cardigan - just yesterday, so here's a picture of the bottom ribbing ans the start of the first repeat. It's not going to be  a quick knit, but I think it will be a valuable addition to my wardrobe. And I just love that colour.

After abandoning The Secret Messenger  and feeling very strange about Muriel Spark's The Girls of Slender MeansI started to worry that I was in a reading slump. I don't usually have reading slumps, so this was a bit shocking. I decided to read An Everyday Hero, by Lauran T…

That's what I call a swatch!

Near the end of sOctober madness (between pair four and pair five)I decided to swatch for Kate Davies' Kildalton Cardigan. It's two projects down the road, but I was considering buying a cable needle from Signature Needle Arts, so I wanted to see what needle size I needed for the project. Also, the sizes of the cardigan are just a tiny bit off for me. I want to knit it with almost no ease: size two is three centimetres smaller than I need, and size 4 is way bigger. So I knit a swatch, as declared by Kate Davies. 
Now we all know she can be quite prescriptive in her directions. This time I decided to follow them: A 64 stitch, 40 row swatch. I do now keep all my swatches (which I rather wish I had done form the start), one day I will do something with them, like sew them together into a blanket and this will be a great addition. 

I knit the first repeat on 3.75mm needles and my second on 4mm. I did learn a lot, especially about my row gauge, and how much I love this Millpost mer…