Friday, 18 July 2014

Auntie Fashion

Shadowscapes Tarot


Today my sister, Halcyon, known to you all as Auntie Fashion, has gone to the great catwalk in the sky. I hope they have enough bling for her.










Wednesday, 16 July 2014

WIP Wednesday : Temper, Temper

Tarot of Durer














So there it is. I am so over shawls right now I can't even tell you. No, the Epic Fail was Monday, and today all I have to show you is a Tantrum:




That is WYS Signature 4ply in 'Bubblegum' - a nice bright color, quite springy, and not a skinny fingering weight yarn. Somewhere there are a couple hundred toning size 6/0 beads. Next to the yarn is the pattern - a beautiful shawl, 'Blue Dahlia', which, in spite of looking complicated, isn't, owing to the clearly charted instructions.

So why the temper and the crumpledness ? Because the publishers chose to print the charts so that they go across the middle of the book, with a break in the middle, rather than printing them landscape style so it would fit in one piece. In addition, the charts are not large. These 2 things combined to make what tennis buffs call a 'forced error' which I could not fix.

So I threw it across the room and ripped - ripped being the operative phrase - it all out, beads sproinging off to all corners.

I am SO over shawls right now.

So I started a cardigan. In beige. I have no idea why I chose this color, it's so nothingy.




Madaket, using Drops Lima. I still don't think this is quite unthinking enough of a knit for my requirements - I'll be spending time keeping company with Auntie Fashion in the hospice to which she has been moved, so I need to occupy my hands but not so much my brain or concentration. Perhaps some kind of crochet for my squillions of metres of yarn leftovers ....



Monday, 14 July 2014

Learning Experience

World Spirit Tarot


Mini Diva's school production of 'Oliver!' is this week - and it being set in Victorian times meant I was suddenly cooler than ever amongst her friends, who are all aware that I knit shawls. Many shawls. Many shawls in many colors. Many shawls that could be borrowed to wear as part of the costume.

I thought I'd better whip up a quickie just in case there was a need for an extra shawl, and chose the Thimbleweed Shawl: being for 4ply/fingering yarn, a fast knit, not too complex but without being too boring. And I had 2 balls of Drops Alpaca in charcoal gray hanging round which I had no other plans for.

No, I have no idea why they were in my stash either, actually. It's not exactly like I'm a jay for color, and have nothing but ponycorn rainbows in my stash, but dull drab subtle colors like gray are definitely not my bag at all.

About halfway through, I decided the color and the pattern were both 'meh' without much to redeem them. But I plodded on, finished the shawl in a couple of days, then washed and blocked it. It did look better.

I left it on the back of the sofa prior to photographing it and giving it to Mini Diva.

Somehow, someway, somewhere, someone .... managed to swoop it up into a pile of dirty laundry.

Yes, one of the markers of a tragedy is the inevitability of the result. I know you know what that was, and here is the crime scene photo evidence:




No, I shan't be bothering to re-make the pattern. It might be a good thing and a lesson from the Universe that this was ruined ie. at least it was inexpensive yarn and a pattern I didn't care about, the lesson being not to waste one's time with things one doesn't feel enthusiastic about.



Friday, 4 July 2014

FO Friday : What A Difference .....

Phantomwise Tarot











.... a day makes. Well, yes. But that's not what I'm talking about, actually. I'm talking about the difference that blocking can make to a shawl. Same pattern shawl, slight difference in the blocking, big difference in the end result - as you can see:



Lale Lace Shawl, Cascade Yarns Alpaca Lace                                                   














Lale Lace Shawl, Austermann Merino Lace












































And a close-up so you can see I beaded the burgundy version:




Both yarns were laceweight, knitted on 3.75mm needles; I used 25g/350m of the Austermann Merino Lace, and approx. the same of the Cascades Alpaca Lace. Both shawls were blocked aggressively, but the pink shawl is larger; the burgundy shawl is beaded, using 19g or so of size 8/0 ruby silver-lined Czech preciosa rocailles from Laserbeads at Etsy, who combines excellent prices with matching service and quality.

An interesting comparison of resulting shape and size - at least to me. For you ? You may have this classy ear-worm for the rest of the day:


Wednesday, 2 July 2014

WIP Wednesday: Weedfree July

Hudes Tarot











And we enter the home straight that is known as the end of term - 3 weeks to go and the ponies children are beginning to flag: our weeks are filling up with The ''Production''(it's 'Oliver!' please gods have mercy on me), the Leavers' BBQ, the Leavers' Disco, Cub Camp (ALL weekend, this year), various sleepovers .... in addition to the usual sporting load. I am tired, and I only have to watch ! In these enlightened times, whipping is not allowed, so I guess I must find some carrots somewhere.

Oh why what a fortuitous coincidence - if only I believed in them - here are pics of  veggies wot we iz growing right now:



Cut and come again lettuce. Of which we need to eat more, by the looks of things.




Our 1st attempt at peas. Report card says ? Could do better.




Potatoes. Pentland Javelin, to be precise. I read somewhere that we will still be harvesting these at Xmas.

 

From left to right: 1 pumpkin, 1 tumbler tomato, 1 plum tomato, 3 bush tomatoes. I LOVE tomatoes, but even I am quailing at how many this will be .... unfortunately I am not a fan of chutney apart from mango.


So not too bad so far, for our 1st summer in this house; there is also sweetcorn and strawberries, as well as culinary herbs. There is a sad lack of floral brightness - I do miss having petunias. Next year I think things will be more cohesive ....

What have you got in your garden right now ?




Friday, 27 June 2014

FO Friday: Summer MKAL Wild Flowers Shawl

Animals Divine Tarot











I thought the 6 of Wands for the unusual Animals Divine Tarot would be a good choice for today, as I have completed the Wild Flower Shawl MKAL.


I'm quite pleased with how it turned out; I'm glad I didn't bother with the 1700 or so beads that were part of the original - the sparkle of the metallic strand that runs through the Rico Design Creative Reflection yarn I used was more than enough.

I kind of wish I hadn't bothered with the nupps in the pattern - for the hassle involved, I'm not sure the results were worth it, as this yarn doesn't really show them up. However, looking at other people's projects, I noticed in many of them the same lack of ... not definition exactly ... but the 3D aspect that nupps ought to provide.

The sharp decreases near the end of the shawl may create a sort of gathered effect, and this may require careful blocking to avoid. You don't have to ask me how I know, cuz I know you know how I know already.

I did particularly like the bobble in the first amazingly long row - when blocked, they create a really lovely edging.

I know, I know, you're itching to see it. Wa-Lah !









The pattern itself is well-written and clear, and the designer is readily accessible through the Ravelry group if there are questions.

I hope you have as enjoyable a weekend as I am hoping for ....


Wednesday, 25 June 2014

WIP Wednesday 200: Weedfree

Whimsical Tarot









I haven't made much progress with the Yalinka Shawl; I don't think I like it much - but I persevere as I might have been affected by the dodgy yarn, rather than just the pattern itself. Plus, I don't think I could bear to rip it back again. Plus, Auntie Fashion is no longer able to go to the function for which she wished to wear it: she is home again, extremely tired and in a wheelchair.

So today let's look at sunny photos of my roses:


Absent Friends, floribunda







Sweet Dreams, scented patio rose



wish I hadn't lost the label - a scented patio rose



I think this is Sweet Magic, scented patio rose










This last rose is the one that suffered most from the move - but she is making a determined effort at a comeback.

And I did start a new knitting project, since I've completed the MKAL, and don't want to work on Yalinka. I wanted something simple, quick, straightforward, and using much thicker yarn than laceweight. So here is the beginning of the Ghislaine Gloves in the Artesano Hummingbird 4ply that looked so ugly as a shawl:




Yes, I know, it doesn't actually tick any of the required boxes; I may have to go rummage in the stash storage to find some of the chunky yarn my sister gave me. How long do we give it before you count me lost and send in a rescue party ?

Meanwhile, over at Tami's Amis .....