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Stathendrick - the photos

This was such an epic knit, and when I finished it, I looked in the mirror, and thought "hmm, not sure". But then we took these photos and I love it. It looks (pretty much) exactly how I wanted it too, although it might be slightly larger than expected.

It's definitely a statement piece.
In this photo (below) you can see the final row, which was meant to be kitchenered in two colours. i got three stitches in and realised it was going to look like a dog's breakfast. i decided to just use the navy, and duplicate stitch the yellow in later, but now I quite like it the way it is.
I wore it on Wednesday to Elise's and, unprompted she said she liked it. I asked if she thought it was a bit big, and she said that it's meant to be.
I like to pretend we went to Provence for these photos. The sunshine was so nice - I'm pretty happy to finally be heading into Spring, even if it means my wearing blanket might not have quite as much wear until winter rolls around again nex…

Talented friends

I've said it before, I have such talented friends. This time I'm talking about Kat, who blogs as Fibre and Sustenance. She recently got married, and designed a pair of socks for Nick to wear at the wedding. When I saw them I thought "Nice socks, Leon would really like them". So when she asked for test knitters, I couldn't reply fast enough.

I'm knitting it with yarn from Little Dipper Yarns, made by my friend Ursula. She has been on hiatus for quite some time, and this is the last skein of her yarn that I have, so it seems fitting to use it on such a great design. 

Sweet Tomato Heel - my thoughts

I finished the sneaker liners I was using to learn Cat Bordhi's Sweet Tomato Heel. I knit the first one toe up, and the second top down, because I'm quirky like that. I also happened to take the yarn from the outside of the ball for the first sock, and the inside for the second, so the stripe pattern is still basically the same. How nice are the colours like this?

The heel makes a lot of sense for short socks. The Fish Lips Kiss Heel, which is very easy to work can leave the back of the sock a tad lower than the front. Because this is 2.5 wedges, rather than just 2, that angle is softened. The only problem I had is that, on just one half of one of the socks, the shortrow method led to odd, elongated stitches. Hopefully I can resolve that, because this is a lovely, smooth, physiologically logical heel.

Wip Wednesday -Strathndrick, the last update

I loved knitting this. And then I didn't. First there was a drama with the instructions - they were wrong and had been corrected for size 3 and four, but not for size one and two. 40 people have knit this, and no one else noticed? Kate Davies knit the same size as me, and still wrote it up wrong. Then I had an extra repeat on the back - I have no idea how or why, but it doesn't seem to matter. 



Then I did the sleeves, which were frustratingly slow, because I couldn't take them to jury duty with me, and we were running on the weekend, and this project is far to heavy and big to make Leon carry on a 30km run, and then on Sunday night it was time to unzip the provisional cast on on the bottom. Now, by this stage I had realised there was ABSOLUTELY NO REASON this project shouldn't have just been cast on, from the bottom, like every other bottom up jumper. it took me three hours to get the 500 + stitches back on the needles. On Monday, following the instructions, I started …

Aftermarket service

Bee was going through her attic storage space and found a cardigan that either her mother or her grandmother had knit for her when she was a child:

It's very cute, and now fits her as a cropped, 3/4 sleeve top, which is totally her style.

 The only problem is that it has two small holes in it. I guess I'm the premier knitter in her life, so she asked me to fix them. The yarn looked really familiar, and then, when i was at my parents place I had saw my father, wearing a cardigan out the the very same yarn. He wouldn't let me unravel a bit of it to fix Bee's though. How mean.

So I took the closest yarn I could find, and patched it up and returned it.

Unfortunately, one of  my darns didn't hold, and another hole popped up...so it got returned to me.

I begged some yarn off the project Sonia was knitting, and tried again, focusing less on making a perfect unseeable repair, and more on trying to make this jumper sound. But now it's got a tiny pink mark on it, like someone…

Once apon a sock - the one with the court

I fibbed when I said that I wouldn't be casting on a sock until I finished Strathendrick. Two Sundays ago Leon and I were running and meeting some friends, and they came and picked up changes of clothes for us the day before, and I slipped in this unstarted sock project. After that I've just been knitting on it when its not worth bringing a huge jumper along - so mainly when I have coffee with my manager.

Today I went to do jury duty. I knew they might take my knitting, because the info they sent in preparation said "no knitting needles". I don't know what crazy damage they think knitters can do, that you couldn't do with a pen. Anyway, I also brought my turkish spindle, just in case. Due to some oddities - mainly that the security people had no idea what knitting looks like - they decided my spindle was knitting needles and confiscated it, but never questioned my knitting needles. So I knit in the jury waiting room, but only in a fairly circumspect manner. I …

Yarnalong - the one with Strathendrick

I have finished the colourwork on Strathendrick:

Now "all" I have to do is to kitchener the shoulders - in colourwork, and knit the collar, sleeves and bottom hem. Piece of cake. 

This has been a really fun knit, except for the bit last night where I found out somehow I have an extra repeat on the back. I'm sure I can sort that out though, it's already meant to be hugely oversized.

I'm also enjoying my read - Raising Stony Mayhall, by Daryl Gregory. Every book he writes is innovative and completely different. This one is about zombies - but not really. I recommend.

I've got jury duty tomorrow, and there is some discussion about whether I will, or won't be allowed to take my needles into the court. The info they sent said "no knitting needles" but I've been through court security before, with Signature Stilletos, no less. So I think I'll leave the giant jumper at home, and take a pair of socks on 2mm bamboo needles, and see how I go. In any c…

Work in progress Wednesday - Strathendrick and a side order of hysteria

In general, Strathendrick is going well. I've done the increases for the underarms, and even though the idea was stressing me out, in reality it wasn't all that hard:

EXCEPT: the pattern calls for an extra increase at the beginning of the back, and the beginning of the front and the beginning of the back. At 10pm last night I notices that, to me, it looks like it should be at the end of the front and back.

I spent 30 minutes trying to work it out last night, I've messaged in the relevant  Ravelry thread, and I spent far too much time thinking about it when I was meant to be asleep last night. I'm sure it's something simple, but I need to get it right or the whole top of the shoulder will look like crap.  When you are as short as me, the hem of your jumper can be as messed up as you like, but everyone sees the tops of my shoulders.

I'm looking forward to sitting down with this and working it out. I'm pretty sure it's  the pattern that is the problem - someo…

A gift that led to a plan

The other Monday Catherine came to knit night and offered me this ball of yarn.

29 grams of "mind the gap" colourway  self striping yarn. Part of me was thinking "what would I do with 29 grams of self striping yarn?" Most of me was shouting "Mind the Gap, all my friends have knit with that. gimme, gimme".  While I was pondering what to do with it, twistedstitching on Ravelry posted this sock: And I knew what i had to do. I found some left over SocksYeah in grey - I would have preferred white but I'm stubbornly using stash. 


I've  put them in a ziplock bag. Because I'm still working on  Strathendrick, and I can't bear to put it down. I guess being a monogamous knitting doesn't stop a girl from dreaming. 

Or, as my father once very lyrically described marriage "just because you're on a diet doesn't mean you can't look in the cake shop window". It sounded less creepy when he said that in the early '90s when I hadn&…

Work in progress Wednesday - the thing about row gauge

I don't worry too much about my row gauge. particularity in a pattern like Strathendrick, where the instructions say to "knit to xx cms". So when I swatched I looked a stitch gauge and whether I liked the fabric. After I started knitting I realised that the final row, which goes all the way across the shoulders, would end in a random spot unless I did some planning.

Kate Davies appears to have ended at a random spot in the repeat, but I know I want it to end on a row 17 or 34 - the yellow rows.

So I did the maths and worked it out. While I was there, I though to check the size of the arm. the smallest size, which I am knitting, leads to a 25 cm arm at the elbow. If I haven't mentioned it in the last 5 minutes - I do crossfit:

Those arms are not going to squeeze down to 25cm. So I  did more maths - it's not very tricky, just making the pre armscyth part shorter, and the chest but longer, to make the sleeve opening wider. So I'm knitting the length measurements fo…

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…