Monday, 22 October 2007

A BIG thank you to Audrey

I want to say a BIG thank you to Audrey for sending me a second dishcloth in the Knitting Haven dishcloth swap when rubbish Royal Mail failed to deliver the first one she posted.

I received this gorgeous circular dishcloth in the post today along with a box of Fine Inuit Herbal Tea with Labrador, Crowberry, Ground Juniper, Arctic Blend and Cloudberry flavours. I LOVE herbal tea and can't wait to try them. :0)

So, THANK YOU Audrey, you're a star! :0)

Sunday, 21 October 2007

FOs - old and new

I'll start with the old. Well, there's only one. ;0)

This is the Slinky Shawl by Jean Moss. I made this about a year ago, maybe longer, but it's stood up to a lot of use really well. It's quite big and is lovely to wrap around yourself on a cold winter evening. Yarn used was Artesano Alpaca Inca Mist but I can't remember what size needles, sorry.

Now onto the new - I *finally* finished my Stansfield 27 socks from More Sensational Knitted Socks. I knit the first one in May but second sock syndrome set in and I couldn't face the second one. I eventually managed to finish it this month and I'm so glad I did - these are very snuggly warm socks, just right for lounging around the house today (it's freezing here!). Yarn used was Posh Yarn Emily in Carnation (shocking pink, IRL).

This sock is the first of my Falling Leaves pair knit using the Opal Autumn Song yarn I received from Jeannet recently (see previous post for details).

Although this is quite a busy yarn, I think the pattern shows up well. I'm using 2 x 2.5mm Addi Turbo circs. I managed to get quite a long sock out of 50g and still had a fair bit left over. Second sock syndrome will NOT set in on these socks - I'll be casting on #2 tomorrow and I can't wait to wear them. :0)

Finally, I made a start on The Bag Ladies knitting group Christmas project - we're putting together memory boxes for parents of stillborn babies and will be distributing them to local hospital baby units. We will knit 2 burial gowns - one for the baby and one for the parents to keep - along with a blanket, a teddy and will include a few other bits and pieces too.

This one took just a few hours last weekend to knit. Yarn used is Sirdar Snuggly 4 ply and 3.75 mm needles (Denise Interchangeables).

It measures approximately 10 in across the chest and is about 12 in long. I just need to thread a bit of ribbon through the eyelets to finish it.
This is so tiny - the ball of Opal sock yarn is there for size comparison.

Sunday, 14 October 2007

An FO and another present!

First of all, I want to say a big THANKS! to Debz who made these beautiful stitchmarkers for our Bag Ladies Knitting Group.
Unfortunately, our group meet was a bit crap for Debz yesterday because some thieving scumbag nicked her handbag from the pub we were in, took her credit cards and pinched money from her account.

Anyway - long story short and all that! ;0) - thanks to Pontypool Police for being on the ball and the duty manager in Wetherspoons for searching through the CCTV for anyone who might have gone into the ladies toilet with Debz' handbag - the thieving scumbag is now in custody, Debz has her money back and apart from the inconvenience of cancelling the cards and waiting for new ones, hopefully she's feeling much better now. So a big thanks again to Debz for these lovely stitchmarkers - everyone go over to her blog NOW and DEMAND she make you some of your own. She *really* ought to be selling these on Etsy, y'know. ;0) They're gorgeous.

This is my 'Ula' cardigan made with Colinette Iona, their luscious new aran weight yarn. It's not the best of photos (my excuse, anyway!) because my camera was refusing to play nicely and kept sucking the life out of every single battery I put into it! This was the best photo DH was able to take quickly before they ran out again. ;0) I deliberately asked him to cut my head off - "manky" just doesn't adequately describe how I look today! *LOL* Anyway, the fronts really do sit much better than this photo suggests.

I must be mad, but I stayed up until 1am yesterday morning sewing this up and then had a mad steam-blocking session at 9am yesterday JUST so I could wear this to our knitting group. ;0)

I used the recommended 4mm and 4.5mm needles and the only change I made was to add an extra 10 rows (roughly 2 ins) before the armhole shaping. It's now about 23 ins long, so only slightly longer than the pattern suggested.

If I had stuck to the length in the pattern, I would have been able to make this with only 6 balls (one less than the pattern called for). As it was, the extra 10 rows took a tiny bit of my 7th ball. However, as I always buy an extra ball (just in case) and had 8 balls to start with, I now have enough to make a scarf to go with. I'm on the look-out for a nice cable pattern, I think. Ravelry, here I come! ;0)

Saturday, 6 October 2007

Well and truly spoiled - times two

This week, I have been well and truly spoiled by two great swap partners. :0)

First of all, last Wednesday I received my bag from Fairynuff (aka Sue) in the Angel Yarns September Swap.

It's a felted bag in a lovely deep red colour which is a fab shape

and just look at this cute button - made by Jominx. How sweet is that?!

Also included in the parcel were 2 bars of Green and Black's chocolate (de-lish!), two skeins of Natural Dye Studio alpaca/merino yarn in Tangerine Ocean (I love alpaca) and the most beautiful silver stitch markers.

Which I think are almost too nice to use as stitch markers - I'm quite tempted to turn them into a charm bracelet. :0)

And then yesterday (Friday), I received a very large box which was postmarked "The Netherlands". My clue, on a postcard of Spaubeek, was 'feline knitting style' and my swap partner was Continental Cat (aka Jeannet).

These are the beautifully wrapped presents I found inside.

And after frantically ripping off the wrapping ;0) this is what I found -

A skein of Opal 'Autumn Song' sock yarn, which is the most beautiful colour and so 'me'. I cast on a pair of 'Falling Leaves' socks earlier and I think the yarn really suits the pattern. I like it when that happens. ;0)

I also had 2 skeins of Opal Rainforest 3 - Butterfly - which are both gorgeous colourways and again very 'me'.

Next was a pattern book - Denim by Lang Yarns. There are *heaps* of designs in this book - sweaters, cardigans, hats and scarves - and I can see myself making quite a few of them in the future.

On the edible front - ;0) - I had (from the left) -

a bar of real 'hot' chocolate (I discovered why it was hot when I took a bite - it's *very* spicy! But very nice. ;0)

a pack of spicy cinnamon biscuits (I love cinnamon) which are a local speciality, only available between end of September and beginning of December, to welcome the arrival of St. Nicolas, a glass jar (which itself is very cute!) of Hill Country Marmalade, which tastes of summer fruits, a pack of fruit tea (made with apples, cinnamon and almonds) and two blocks of chocolates on wooden spoons - a brilliant idea - you dip them in a warm drink and suck the chocolate off. Lush!

So thank you to Sue and Jeannet for my wonderful presents. :0)

The presents have been a welcome distraction this weekend because I'm full up with yet another cold. :0( It was only the week before last that I had another one - and I was off work for 4 days with it. If I feel like this on Monday, I'll have to drag myself into work - and hopefully pass out cold on the floor so they send me home ;0) - because if I call in sick again with a heavy cold, they're bound to think I'm pulling a fast one! Annoyingly today my ears have been blocked so I feel like I'm hearing everything through cotton wool.

Anyway, enough of me and my ailments - ;0) - I'm off to knit some more falling leaves ...............