Archive for January, 2009

Broken Camera!

January 31, 2009

My camera is broken.  I bought new batteries but the flash doesn’t seem to be working at all now.  And the weather has been too gloomy to take photos without a flash.  I’m hoping that it will be sunny tomorrow so I can take some pics but the snow that’s been forecast may stop that! So please bear with me. 

I finished the lace border on Demeter on Saturday, I stayed up late (so it was Sunday really when I finished) watching As You Like It on BBC2.  It was a good adaptation but what do you expect if it’s directed by Kenneth Branagh, I was slightly confused at it being set in Japan though.  On Sunday I sewed all the ends in, grafted the straps together at the shoulders and it’s all ready to block now.  It fits me really well, so as long as the lace border stays flat after blocking I will be really pleased with it. 

On Sunday I also had another play with my soldering iron and made a birthday card for a work colleague.  It was pieces of orange/yellow organza between a white layer and yellow layer of the same fabric on a black felt backing.  I’d have preferred a white felt as the black dulled the colours but I haven’t found any synthetic felt where I live yet. 


Tuesday was college and we did more colour work – tints and shades this week.  Adding white to the main twelve colours in my colour wheel to see the tints and then adding black to see the shades.  Adding black produces some pretty icky looking colours which was a surprise to me.  But all this colour work and paint mixing is helping me make a lot more sense of the Crafters Guide to Color by Deb Menz that I bought last summer. Reading it without actually doing anything with colour theory at the same time is quite confusing.

Also on Sunday (I was a busy girl that day!!) I cast on the Lacy Tea Top (Ravelry Link) from Glamour Knits by Erika Knight.

I bought some mohair yarn by Wagtail Yarns at the Knitting & Stitching Show in 2006 to knit the To Dye For jumper from the first Stitch n Bitch book.  This was to be my first foray into knitting a garment and to be quite blunt it was a disaster.  I decided I would knit the body in the round (yes my first jumper and I converted the pattern – I AM mad) on circular needles.  Then I adjusted the sleeves with difficulty as I had no experience of knitting sleeves let alone changing a sleeve pattern.  But I have short arms and knew that the ones in the pattern would swamp me.  When I finished the three pieces I sewed the shoulders together and then hit a brick wall.  It was knit in mohair on size 7mm needles so the weave was very holey and I had absolutely no idea how you sewed together a holey fabric.  I had never sewn together an  unholey knit fabric so a holey one had no hope!  I was a complete novice at knitting garments.  I took it to my mum’s for help where it hung on a coat hanger for months as she was loathe to sew it together too.  Finally at in the autumn of 2007 I realised that the sleeves were too narrow and the head of them did not in anyway resemble the shape of the armhole in the body of the garment and I frogged it!  The whole thing, in mohair.  I frogged it – luckily I didn’t realise that frogging mohair was difficult beforehand.  I managed to save most of the yarn and wound it back into balls. 

 For Christmas 2007 I was given Sensual Knits by Yahaira Ferreira and inside it is a mohair jumper by Treschicveronique. I cast on, it was an i-cord cast on and took me forEVER to cast on the 200ish stitches.  I knit about 15 rows and then gave up.  It was in a bag for most of 2008.  Finally around November time I admitted I wasn’t going to get anywhere with it and I frogged it again.  I lost the i-cord cast on in the process. 

Then in January 2009 I bought a new magazine UK called The Knitter and there at the back was the Lacy Tea Top by Erika Knight. It was knit in Rowan Kid Silk Haze in a lovely pale green and I instantly thought I could use my mohair yarn for that. I did a gauge swatch in the lace pattern on the size needles recommended and it matched! It’s fate I decided and so I have cast on. I’ve only knit 2 lace repeats so far (24 rows) and I am knitting it in the round but it seems to be working so far. I did practice the lace pattern on some other DK yarn both flat and in the round before I started so I was completely comfortable with it’s construction. So fingers crossed it’ll work out this time and I’ll finally use my purple mohair.


Demeter Progress – it’s about time!

January 24, 2009

Well that was possibly the worst week at work ever!! I was so pleased when it got to 5pm yesterday. 
It was quite a good week knitting-wise though.  I have restarted the Demeter vest that I started knitting in May 2008 with some Cherry Tree Hill Supersock in Wild Cherry colour.  I stopped knitting it in June last year as I got to the armhole area and wasn’t sure how to continue.  I loved Miriam’s pattern but I wanted to change it to make the back higher and the straps closer together so that I wasn’t constantly worrying that my bra was showing at work.  Then I got stuck and couldn’t figure out how exactly to do that so I haven’t knitted it at all until last Sunday.  I MADE myself pick it up and start again – I was determined to finish it before I would allow myself to cast on a new project.  Bossing myself around worked, so I looked at the pattern, the Demeter vest I knitted last January out of Elle Cotton DK and the part knitted one, did some measuring and just went for it.  Almost a week later I have finished knitting the front, back, all four straps and am halfway round knitting the lace edging on the bottom.  I would show you a picture of it in progress but unfortunately my camera is not playing at the moment.  I think I need to get some new batteries. 

I did manage to take this picture of the hot water bottle cover I knitted at the beginning of January for Kathy at work .  It only took a week to knit, and is a smaller version of the one I made for myself. 
I haven’t got a picture but I also knitted a Calorimetry over Christmas for my friend Vivienne, I just need to post it to her now.  It’s exactly the same as this one I knitted for Keirsten last January. And it means that I have some left over yarn that I can make into a teapot cosy for me at some point.
Improvers: Drawing and Sketching started last Tuesday and we spent the evening doing a still life to remind us of the skills we learnt before Christmas doing the Introduction course. 

Then this week we started the Colour part of the course and painting a colour wheel using the three primary colours. It was really interesting, I learnt a lot about mixing colours. I’m hoping this part of the course will help me with my knitting and other crafts.

These labels were a Christmas present from my lovely friend Nic and I can’t wait to finish Demeter so that I can sew one of them in the back!! I’m going to get the scarf I gave Bex back and sew one in it for her too! You can order your own here.

I finally got myself all set up to do some fusing fabric with my new soldering iron. I haven’t yet managed to make anything worth showing but it’s fun practicing.

Happy New Year!!

January 10, 2009

I need to take some pics of my latest FOs. I haven’t shown you my finished Autumn scarf, the Clapotis I knitted over the Christmas holiday or my finished Odessa Socks.
It was back to work this week and wasn’t that fun (not!) I hate going back to work after Christmas it’s so soul destroying and gloomy. It’s been wonderfully cold though so I’ve been able to dig out some warm wooly items that I usually can’t wear because it’s too hot. I’m afraid to say that I haven’t knitted them myself though.
Projects that are in my not too distant future:
1) Finish little quilt.
2) Knit another hot water bottle cover for Kathy at work.
3) Drawing and Sketching: Improvers starts on Tuesday!
4) Experiment with my new soldering iron and fuse some fabric like Margeret Beal in this book that I got for my birthday.
5) Knit a lace something – torn between Cleopatra by Miriam Felton and Laminaria by Elizabeth Freeman.

And I do still have plans to knit a black and grey tanktop. The cactus and knucks have been cancelled due to lack of interest though.

I can’t wait until Tuesday, I’ve really missed going to college every week. Unfortunately, I’ve been a bad student and haven’t drawn a single thing since the last lesson on 4 December!