Wednesday 27 June 2012

WIP Wednesday 99: Pebbles Galore

Tarot of a Moon Garden

So if you read my friend Steph's blog, you'll see some pictures of the beach at Aldeburgh. Yesterday after school it was hot and sometimes sunny, so we went to the beach at Felixstowe, where we picnicked, Mini Diva swam in the sea, Destructo Boy played with the waves, and - bonus - DH turned up to the amazement of all except me, who knew he would be back in time.

Anyway, as you can see, Aldeburgh is not the Champeen of Pebble Beaches, Old Felixstowe is; I promise it is not some random pile of stones, the sea really is just over yonder:

And just to show you, here is the white sail of a boat on the sea:

Of course, the plus side of pebbles vs. sand is that you can knit without worry of granular contamination; so I did. And I am 64 rows into the Celestial Half-Circle Shawl, using the 'Cloud 7' colorway of Crazy Zauberball; it's purty, isn't it ? 

I just need to find that they do this yarn in a peachy/russet/cream colorway, and I would be on cloud 7. Yes, OK, so I know it should be cloud 9, but that wouldn't have worked ... There are lots more pretty things to see over at Tami's Amis ....

Monday 25 June 2012

Next, Please !

Hanson-Roberts Tarot

So today I had a To Do list with 10 items on it, and I have already completed 8 of them - without having to cheat: I didn't even put 'eat lunch' on there. And number 9 is to blog, which I'm doing right this minute.

One of the items on my list was to wash and block the 'Summer Flies Shawl', which I finished yesterday; I still love the yarn, and the pattern is a nice quick knit, but it would not have been as successful or enjoyable without thetanull's modifications to make it larger. 

As it goes, I added the extra section of butteflies and eyelets, but only 10 rows of the Knotted Openwork section, and 8 rows of the ruffle before I did the Picot Edge bind-off. And that left me with this:

Which is some tiny amount that most definitely would not have stretched to one more row. This is what's known as 'cutting it fine'. But anyway, it is washed and blocking as we speak, so there might be FO pictures come Friday.

Of course, although I finished knitting that yesterday evening, I couldn't cast on my next project right away, as first I had to squirm and suffer through England's penalty shootout defeat to Italy, and then console a very upset Destructo Boy. 

But as all my chores for today are done, I have printed out the beginning instructions for Wendy Johnson's Mystery Summer Solstice Shawl KAL - although I am not certain of which yarn I'll use yet - and also found a nice semi-circle shawl pattern called 'Celestial Shawl' that I think the 'Cloud 7' Crazy Zauberball will be just right for. So I'll be casting on at least one of these tonight when I watch the new episode of 'Grimm'.

Wednesday 20 June 2012

WIP Wednesday 98: Yarn Feast

Vision Quest Tarot

So we're talking accumulation as we have gone from mojo-less without any ideas, to having a promising queue and too many ideas. Famine to feast. But we do not repine, as we are a glutton. Have you noticed, the royal 'we' gives us some unique grammatical and/or syntax issues ? Oh well. You'll have to live with it.

Having sorted out the snarls from winding, I very quickly got to the knotted openwork section of the 'Summer Flies' shawl, I ripped it all out and started over on 5mm needles, as the yarn seems more like a sport/DK than a 4ply/fingering, and was coming out a little ... thick ... on the 4mm needles. I am loving the soft, silky feel and summery color:

I have modified it already by adding an extra set of eyelets and another butterfly section following thetanull's notes, to make the shawl bigger. It's a straightforward knit that one can manage without errors even during the excitement of the England - Ukraine match when one is marvelling at the ineptness of Wayne Rooney and his several goal misses.

And in the post I have received as a super-late birthday treat from my Evil Twin and my Good Twin, this:

A beautiful crimson Aran-weight silk and lambswool chenille yarn. There is enough for a sweater for me: my idea being, that as they gifted it to me, that will be pressure to use the yarn, and I have not made anything for myself at all yet, and then also when I wear the sweater, I will think of them.

And in pursuit of my goal of making the four shawls for important ladies ( two down, two to go) I have found the appropriate yarn for the remaining two; I already knew that for one I needed this olive Crazy Zauberball:

But I was having trouble finding what I wanted for the other shawl, until I visited the Addicted2Knitting website, which stocks some unusual Zauberball colorways that I have not found elsewhere; it was here that I found the colorway 'Cloud 7', which is just right:

So yes, I am sitting in the sunshine gloating over my stash and my plans for it: a most enjoyable feeling, let me tell you. You can find other gloatees over at Tami's Amis ....

Friday 15 June 2012

FO Friday 91: Oodles

So while toasting myself by the fire, and before my knitting mojo had evacuated the disaster zone, I completed a few projects, which I'm very happy with:

A tank top for my youngest niece (in a blue to match her eyes, as she requested) using some old Sirdar Country Style DK that I found at my Dad's house; I used a plain tank top pattern and modified it easily by substituting Cell Stitch.

A vintage pattern baby cardigan in Stylecraft Special 4ply in 'Pale Rose' (the first one I made is here); light and delicate, just right for next door's lovely new arrival, Isabelle May. And also for her:

Sirdar 1629 cardigan, in Stylecraft Life DK 'Crocus' colorway, trimmed with an anonymous white DK that was in my stash because I wasn't sure a part ball of the Stylecraft would be enough (and I'm still not sure it was good that I erred on the side of caution). I love this pattern - I think this is the 6th time I've knitted one of its 4 versions.

Don't worry that I've neglected my own darlings - I completed the Delphinium Shrug for Mini Diva; and as I'd made the age 12/13 size, there's even a bit of growing room. I am hopeful it may last until the end of summer ...  

I added ruffles to the sleeve cuffs, as it looked somehow unfinished without them; and the blue is much richer than it appears in photos taken on one of our rare sunny days. The Twilley's Freedom Gorgeous DK yarn is nice, slippery, heavy, with a bit of stretch; but awkward to sew up with as it comes unplied very easily ....

Lots more to see over at Tami's Amis ....

Thursday 14 June 2012

Learn From My Fail No.1

Legacy of the Divine Tarot
So there I was, mojo-lessly and therefore aimlessly mooching around Ravelry, when - Lo ! I saw a reference to a shawl; clicking on the link reminded me that I had seen it before and liked it - so why it wasn't in my queue I don't know: 'Summer Flies Shawl'. That is flies as in 'time flies' not 'buzzbuzz flies', obviously. And - bonus ! - I have two, that is at least two, yarns that are just right for it in color, and I think in yardage.

Yes, Dear Reader, you may rejoice, as I did, that the mojo had come home to Mama after a mere week or so; clapping my hands and skipping in glee, I tra-la-la-ed as I set up my ballwinder.

Light of heart and mind, and warbling tunelessly, I selected the yarn, the lovely turquoise sock-yarn given to me by the even lovelier stephcuddles on her recent visit. Mini Diva inveigled me into letting her help (it was almost her bedtime) by winding the winder. So far, so good, right ?


I didn't swear. I didn't scream. I didn't shout. I didn't fulminate. I didn't gnash my teeth or wail at the shock of Mini Diva suddenly exhibiting signs of being related to Destructo Boy. I sent her to bed in a far more terrifying silence.

Four and three quarter hours later, I had this:

Actually, since it was after 1am by that time, it looked more like this:

So, learn from my fail: do not allow a 9 year old to cozen you into helping wind yarn when the TV is on, she is watching it as well as winding, she should be in bed, and you are not paying 100% attention to what she is doing.

Monday 11 June 2012

Mojoless Monday

Steele Wizard Tarot
Wow, it's a bit dusty in here, and the spiders seem to have made themselves at home by draping several cobwebs over the dark unused corner that is my blog recently. Oh well, never was much of one for housework, there are always SO many trillions more interesting things to do.

 I have been burning bridges with the gay abandon of a pyromaniac starting a very successful campaign of arson by first setting light to the fire station and destroying all the fire engines.

Cathartic as this experience has been, bridges are a finite commodity, as are friends, and so we hope the Prozac will obviate a recurrence.

I must say how touched I have been by the emails and messages I have had asking about my absence and inquiring about my well-being.

But all this sturm und drang has left me feeling mojo-less: after a knitting sprint, I have only 1 WIP on my needles, which - natch - I'm not in the mood for knitting right now. The items in my queue that I want to knit I don't have the pattern or the yarn for. I have some lovely yarn in my stash that doesn't suit the patterns I already have. Isn't that always the way ?

I may have to turn to crochet.