Saturday, August 25, 2007

The Nemesis is Finished!!

I can scarcely believe it and am still recovering from the shock.

I promised myself I would not blog until the brown jumper was done. That promise was kept and my knitting nemesis is no more!! I had a deadline of this weekend, as I'm seeing my brother, David, on Friday 31st when we head out west for my other brother's 30th birthday party.

The last stitch was completed yesterday afternoon, jumper was washed and dried flat and I'm really happy with the result. My neckband is much better than the first one I did - not such a struggle to get it over a head! Bells and I had a deal going where we had to report to each other every day with how much we'd done - me on the brown jumper and Bells on her steeked jacket. It worked really well because the thought of reporting that I'd done nothing resulted in far too much guilt!

Don't have a 3D model yet, but here is my nemesis lying on a towel - it's been raining here so I couldn't dry it outside.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

My next gift deadline was for the red branching out scarf as my friend's birthday is 9 September. I got to 1m and thought, hmmm, that's probably long enough once I block it. But it didn't gain as much as I thought it would. Oh well, I'm sure my friend will love it anyway. This is my first go at blocking something. It turned out just over 1.2m long, so I'm not sure I did it right - wasn't sure how much to stretch it. I guess I can do it again if necessary so hints welcome!

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

So not much other knitting has been done! But I do feel extremely virtuous.

I did frog the knittery passionfruit socks (again!) and started making lacy mock cables with it. I'm really happy with it - I will end up with a pair of beautifully soft, pretty socks all for ..... ME!!

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Such a simple, quick pattern. I think these will become a staple of my sock-knitting library (that so far consists of only 2 patterns!)

Work has been a bit tough this last week - had some difficult, emotionally draining matters to deal with. It's hard to remain completely detached sometimes, but one has to in this job, just for self-preservation. So knitting the brown jumper has actually been quite soothing. But it will be a long time before another adult jumper goes on my needles, I think!

But ... my oldest friend called me today and told me that she has a little one on the way, so more baby knitting. Such quick results when making tiny things - I love it!

Sunday, August 12, 2007

A willingness to frog ...

to fix a mistake is the mark of a good knitter, I have been told! And today I had to frog 20 rows of brown jumper sleeve number 2. A milestone has been passed. I was clicking away watching Anne of Avonlea last night while Glynn was at work. This morning, I noticed that I had done an even row where I should have done an odd row. Bum!! So I frogged it and have now passed it on to Millicent. Her brain is only the size of a pea, so she is unlikely to become bored with it.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

I should probably introduce Millicent properly. She is rather prissy and, despite the jaunty bow on her head, a little conservative. But her unzipped abdomen did yield up a set of 2.75 DPNs that I forgot I had, which was very generous of her. Actually, that's a worry. I've been knitting since May 14 this year and I'm already forgetting purchases. Hmmmmm.

It is a time of indecision. I was so in love with my passionfruit knittery yarn that I simply had to start something. Jaywalkers were commenced, on 2.25s, but I soon got fed up with the double decreases. Just too difficult in that slightly thicker sock yarn and disaster almost struck in the form of a snapped knit pick DPN! So they were frogged.

Consultation was had with my newly arrived Sensational Knitted Socks book and waterfall rib socks were then commenced on 2.5s (after ripping the needles out of a grey striped basic rib!). The going was slow on that and came to a standstill while I consider what to do. Bells suggested lacy mock cable socks. But after seeing that it involved casting on only 56 stitches I was worried they may not fit my tree trunk ankles. A brainwave struck! My sister-in-law has size 7 feet and smaller ankles, so I figured I'd make her a pair of lacy mock cable socks, in some Opal yarn I had, and try to squeeze them over my clodhoppers.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

I'm loving this pattern!! The leg was churned out in a few hours. The heel took some time, as it's, I understand from Bells, one step along from an eye of partridge heel, as the wrong side row is Sl1, P1 all the way across.

So now I have 4 socks on the go, all different!

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

The grey ones do look a trifle forlorn with no needles don't they? I'm thinking of frogging them and doing something different anyway - maybe garter ribs.

Have been doing a little shopping from Little Knits since they're having a sale. There was a lovely Regia sock yarn in burgundies and cream. Unfortunately, some horrid person walked out with it without paying, so it won't be coming to my house :( I simply don't know how anyone could bear to knit with something they stole. I hope they throw them in a boiling hot wash with their white sheets, which all turn pink and the socks turn into booties. Is that bad karma?

But, on the bright side, Glynn came up with a solution for a little problem. When I knitted his jumper, which was my very first big ticket item, the first piece I did was the back. It had some mistakes in it, so I made another one. But what to do with the first?

Time for some background. At the beginning of the year, Glynn and I rescued a 2 year old part Himalayan cat from the RSPCA. We renamed her "Libby". She had been abused and was very timid. Just coming out of her shell now (and how!!). Unfortunately, she has formed a liking for sleeping on our bed and kneading my cream damask duvet cover. Aaaaaggghhh!!! Because she's so uncertain of people, we are loathe to kick her off all the time and reject her.

But, she also loves Glynn's moss rib jumper. So, a catbed was purchased, lined with the discarded jumper back and she looks very happy with her new arrangements. When she's totally in love with her bed, it will be relocated to the windowseat and the bed will be ours once more! I do so love a happy ending!

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Today we decided to enter her in our vet's pet of the week. That's really quite obsessive isn't it? But Glynn did this comic and I thought it was so cute that we just had to give her some publicity. Of course, the 10% discount prize doesn't hurt, either!

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Anyone for a slice?

It's not often that I get overly excited when my mail arrives in chambers, but two inviting looking parcels turned up today!! Number one was a set of 12 of Jejune's beautiful knitting art cards. They truly are the perfect accompaniment to any knitted gift! Thanks! :)

Number 2 was a hank of The Knittery cashmere merino in the passionfruit colourway. So as soon as I got home my husband was again enlisted to act as my interim swift! Poor Glynn! But how beautiful are these colours?

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

I'm planning on a pair of jaywalker socks. And they will be all for ..... ME!!!

Everything on my needles at the moment is a gift, so I've decided to keep the best for myself. Selfish? Maybe!!

I also picked up this yarn from ebay, which will be a pair of socks for one of my sisters-in-law.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

The colours aren't precisely as they appeared on the ad, but they're nice and bright and my sister-in-law, who lives in a cold house and is in the habit of losing things, will no doubt appreciate them.

The weekend must have been one for nemesis motivation! Bells got cracking on her steeked jacket sleeve. And brown jumper now has a back! This is how boring the pattern is:

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

But it will be nice and cosy when (if?) it's finally finished. Have started sleeve number two, so am on the downhill run now, which is a nice feeling.

I had a lovely day last Wednesday. A friend of mine, Geri, does beautiful quilting and I took the day off to have a craft day with her. She's also a wonderful cook, so a delicious lunch, stimulating conversation and drooling over her work made for a brilliant day! I worked on the one row scarf. It only took another evening after that and it was finished!! Excuse the cheesy look on Glynn's face and the dangling ends (which have now been sewn in).

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

It is now on its way to a (hopefully pleased) recipient!

Striped hot socks number 2 is now on the needles for my other sister-in-law. This time I've got my lovely Knit Picks DPNs and am knitting on 5 instead of 4, which seems to be helping with the ladders. I adore my Knit Picks! Their shiny, slidy pointiness is so addictive! The grey toned pair is for my brother. Maybe I'll have a sock wedding before they are sent.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

And, finally, the branching out scarf has grown somewhat. I now have 20 repeats, but will keep going until I run out of yarn. Actually, that means it will end up being about 50, which is probably too long, so maybe I'm closer than I thought to the end. Deadline is 9 September for that one. One wouldn't know it from the picture, but it's still the same dark red it started out as!

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

A dark hole yawns before me. After tonight, no knitting until Friday. Work calls and I don't think I can charge for "contemplation time" whilst I am knitting. Unfortunate.