Sunday, 24 October 2010

wool: Bath's Premier Knitting Emporium

Bath finally has it's own proper yarn shop! I only discovered this in the local papers this week, so the first thing I did on Saturday was go and have a look at it. Luckily, it is very central and therefore easy to get to. I suspect I won't be needing to go all the way to Brislington anymore from now on.

wool only just opened in October and it is great to be able to go into a shop, see and feel the yarn before buying. Online shopping just can't offer the same experience. and you know what you will get. Aside from a lot of the yarn you would expect to find in a good yarn shop, I was happy to see a few fancier things as well. Oh, and they have KnitPro too! Hurrah!

I am looking forward to any new yarns they may be getting in the future and especially the knitting groups and workshops promised to come. (I really do miss being able to go to such gatherings ever since I left our knitting group in Germany). The shop is small, but very cosy - love the sofas! - especially on a day as rainy as the day I first stepped inside it. It is definitely worth a visit and I am sure I will drop by again now and then to have a look around and stock up. I haven't felt this excited about knitting in a long time!

PS: The Big Knit has extended its deadline now - too bad I already posted all of my mini hats. If you have some more you can drop them in person at Age Concern or wool. If only I had known!

Featured on Ravelry's Designer pages

By now I have two of my project pictures featured on the designers' pages on Ravelry.
Recently I was asked if they could use my Hands of Blue picture and previously one of the photos of the Scottie Doggy Cardigan was also used. Nice! I didn't expect that, so it was a nice surprise.

Monday, 18 October 2010

Hands of Blue for Jasmin

A quick and satisfying project for a friend and colleague of mine. She always comes to work on her bike and since it is getting quite chilly out there now, she asked for a pair of warm gloves.

These were made from Lucy Hague's pattern on Ravelry and I like the pattern so much that I may well make a pair of half-fingered gloves for work myself. Though now that I am ready for it, the heating at work is on full all day and we have tropical temperatures indoors. Quite a change from last year's freezing cold!

Anyway, Jasmin supplied the yarn, I supplied the pattern, and this is the pretty result.

Saturday, 25 September 2010

The Big Knit - Time's Up!

87 little hats for The Big Knit 2010 are now complete and on their way to Innocent Smoothies. The deadline is October 4 so I finished them in good time. There are a variety of hats in the mix, some fruit themed, a couple of animals, numerous improvised designs and some taken from pattern books. I don't think I have a favourite because there are so many that turned out really nicely.
The more complicated ones are definitely among the best because the designs turned out well even on such a small scale. They were much more fun to knit than easy ones because they posed a bit of a challenge. Also, it allowed me to use up some of the yarn I had left at the bottom of the bag, knowing it would never be used for anything larger than these hats.

Figures are harder to do, especially without any patterns. That is why I only made two of them, though I am especially proud of the bunny. I have seen some of the amazing designs featured on The Big Knit's Hat of the Week page. Wish I had the patience and patterns for those!

I like knitting lace, but most of those patterns don't work very well on little hats. These were among the last ones I knit because they were quick to do.

The first ones I knit, however, were fruit themed and my favourite is the watermelon design featured on the bottle below. Inadvertently, I also ended up making a courgette, complete with little yellow flower on top. In fact, it was meant to be a random design with pretty flower, but it wouldn't quite work the way I had planned.

The other kind of random design simply consisted of various bits of yarn put together and experimenting with the edges.

I enjoyed making these and it was a simple thing to do for a good cause. I hope that we will have helped lots of people with this event. I am definitely looking forward to seeing the little hats on bottles in the supermarket this winter and I hope I will remember to take part again next year.

Sunday, 8 August 2010

The Big Knit 2010

At last I won't miss out on The Big Knit!

In the past two years I only heard about it too late and it was only by chance that I thought of it again. For information on how to join this charity project supported by Innocent Smoothies, click here.

So now I am busily knitting little hats. I have no idea how many I will have in the end, but I have loads of leftover yarn that will be handy for these fast items. Right now I am mainly making them while watching the whole series of Buffy from beginning to end. And since I start my new (old) job later this month, my future lunch breaks will be filled with knitting too.

I will have to come up with new pattern ideas soon because I have now done everything I can easily think of. My favourite hats so far are the strawberry and watermelon ones. In my next post I shall add some pictures.

It'll be fun!

Friday, 16 July 2010

Teddy Bears for Baby

At last I managed to block the teddy bear baby blanket I made quite some time ago! The knitting itself was quick and I used some baby yarn that Mark's mum got for free at a knitting fair. It was a rather mindless project because it is very simple and only involves counting the k and p stitches. Good thing too as I haven't felt like knitting much for some time now. I think that's mainly because I don't have any good yarn left now and won't be able to buy any anytime soon.

I can't say anything about the yarn other than it is 100 percent acrylic (yikes!). Still, that will make it easy to wash, which is probably the most important thing with babies.

Tuesday, 27 April 2010

Eat Your Veggies Baby Hat

It looks as though more friends of mine will be having babies this year, so it was a good thing I started practising my baby knits. The Eat Your Veggies baby hat was irresistible and finally I had an excuse to make it. It is tiny!

I am not entirely sure it will fit a newborn's head, but I hope it does. Right now I am knitting another one of these in white, though I may opt for something entirely different because I tend not to knit the same thing twice. Where is the fun in that?

I had to knit the hat with 3mm DPNs because the recommended size didn't look any good at all. To make up for the difference, I cast on more stitches, however. I used the same Sirdar Snuggly DK that I had for the baby cardigan earlier and I still have loads left. That is why I am considering making a jumper or something similar for the next baby.

Tuesday, 13 April 2010

Magic Mirror and Scottie Dogs

It seems as though I am back to my old multitasking self again. Right now I have a few projects on the go and the latest ones are my Magic Mirror socks and a baby cardigan.

These socks have been in my queue on Ravelry for ages and since I got some nice sock yarn for Christmas last year, I can finally knit them. It would look better in yarn of a single colour or with subtler shades, I suppose, but right now I am not being picky. After having had to begin knitting these socks three times, I finally found the right size for me. I am using 2mm needles and making the large size socks, which fit well. I am still just 2/3 through the first sock, though.

Beth and Dan revealed that they are having their first baby in August and of course I immediately knew I was going to knit something for it. Incidentally, I bought the latest issue of the Knitter recently for the first time in many months and it had a pattern for the Scottie dog cardigan that I thought would be a great way to learn how to knit a proper garment. It all went very well and very quickly too, but I have found that I really hate sewing in the loose ends! I do not mind assembling the pieces, however, which was rather fun to my surprise.

The cardigan still needs blocking before it is done, so I hope the intarsia will be smoother than it is at the moment. I guess I knitted it a bit too tight. I am not entirely happy with my colour choice, but there wasn't a lot to choose from in the shop at the time. What is more, Beth and Dan don't want to know whether the baby will be a boy or a girl, so I had to choose colours that would be neutral. I hope these are fine.

The buttons are from an old blouse of mine that I no longer have. Luckily, I tend to keep buttons for no particular reason and they do come in handy sometimes.

I may well knit some baby booties and a hat as well since there is a lot of yarn left. I would also like to knit myself a spring shrug, but can't find the right pattern. So I may have to improvise, which means lots of measuring and maths. Yikes!

Monday, 1 March 2010

Unravelling Socks

Having decided that the Outside In socks were far too tight, I had to unravel them again. Ah well. At least now I have cast on Magic Mirror which I have been wanting to knit for a while. Let's hope these work out all right! I also hope they have enough stretch if I do knit them with the 2 mm needles recommended in the instructions. Of course I only noticed that once I had cast on with 2.5 mm ones, how typical.

This week I will be in Edinburgh on holiday and since I am going there by train, I will have about 6 hours of knitting time. I am glad I am not flying and have to leave my knitting in my suitcase instead.

Still have no idea how to block my cardi other than waiting till I can buy some rods to do it with instead of pins. This is just a matter of months, I can tell.

Sunday, 21 February 2010

Cardigan and Socks

Even though I haven't posted lately, I have been knitting on and off since Christmas. One of these days iI may also have pictures to add, but at the moment I am not particularly happy with either one of the projects I have begun.

Firstly, there is that circular cardi I have been trying to make, but I don't have enough yarn to make it as big as I need it. However, it may yet fit once it is blocked, but right now I don't even know how or where to block it properly. That is why it will have to wait and I have no proper pictured. Eventually, it may not even fit at all and I will have to unravel everything, who knows.

Then there are the Outside In socks which, oddly enough, I am not going to wear inside out after all, I decided. I prefer the look of them that way. Somehow I had a problem with the pattern and ended up having to improvise a lot. Since the afterthought heel is no good for high insteps, I have had to make a different heel as well. Considering it has been ages since I made my last socks, it took me several tried to figure out exactly how I used to knit my favourite heel too. Oh dear.

I am not in any hurry to finish and neither project may get done as intended. Nonetheless, the yarns are beautiful and a present from my Secret Santa last year. I love the yarn, I just need to do something good with it.