Friday, 31 May 2013

FO Friday Jewel Box Socks

Happy Friday everyone! I finished these socks last week, another pair of toe up vanilla socks trying out different heel techniques

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I really love Judy's magic cast on for doing the toe, it's so neat and almost magical how twisting the yarn a certain way results in a row of stitches. Guess it's aptly named!

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The yarn I used it called Jewel Box and is from The Laughing Yaffle. It's beautifully dyed and smells lovely as you're knitting it

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I used a Sweet Tomato Heel for these socks which was quite straight-forward. I'm not sure if I'd use it again for multicoloured socks as I think the colour changes can highlight the slight unevenness of the stitches. For semi-solid or single coloured socks though it would be fab

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I've thoroughly enjoyed making these socks and I'm really pleased with how they've turned out. My next pair, also in a Laughing Yaffle yarn are almost finished so I'll be able to share them next week.

For more FO Friday posts visit Tami's Amis

Thursday, 30 May 2013

Spinning Week 1

Inspired by Sarah at Crafts from the Cwtch I've been playing at spinning my own yarn. I bought a fibre and drop spindle kit from Hilltopcloud and I've been trying to do a little spinning every day. Even thought I've not been doing it long I'm starting to see an improvement in how even the yarn is and getting more of a feel for the process. Here's my first attempt which was done over several sessions. The inner area is slightly more even than the outside!

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And this is what I've spun this evening:

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I think it's getting a bit better?

It's fun learning a new craft. I can almost feel my brain processing it at night when I'm sleeping, I keep having dreams of fiber lol.

I've finished the heel on my sock and knitted about half way up the leg part. I actually did the heel twice because I started the first attempt late at night without the instructions and muddled myself so it ended up wonky. I frogged it back, restarted and it came out just fine. When will I learn not to do things using my brain when I'm tired?

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As you can see my ripple cushion has grown a little too :-)

I'll be back tomorrow for FO Friday to share some socks with you that I was working on last week so please drop by again. Mr Soaring Sheep and I are going to have a curry and watch Springwatch now, night!


Wednesday, 29 May 2013

WIP Wednesday

Goodness me what a dreary day we're having here. Cold and wet and more like Autumn than nearly Summer :-S Time for a bit of colour to bring the sunshine back?

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I'm currently turning the heel of my socks using the Eye of Partridge technique. I think this might be my favourite. It looks very neat and as the fabric is thicker from the slipped stitches it looks like the heel might last a bit longer too. It's pretty simple to work as well which is always good :-)

The project you can see in the background is the start of a ripple cushion using Lucy from Attic24's Neat Ripple pattern. Very well written instructions as always and a deceptively simple technique too. It's basically just increases and decreases. Easy peasy

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I fancied a bit of cheerful hooking yesterday afternoon and I'm really enjoying it :-)

For now though I'm going to finish my sock heel and try to warm up a little! Linking up with Tami's Amis as usual :)

Tuesday, 28 May 2013

Fluffy post

As I'm on my last skein of sock yarn (or at least sock yarn I want to make sock from rather than a shawl...) I ordered a couple of skeins from Flamboyance Yarns which arrived last week. I might also have signed up for their sock yarn club for this Summer too. Very excited about this :-)

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This colourway is called Orange Rainbow and is dyed on their Odyssey base which is 80% bfl and 20% nylon. I'm sure it will make some very happy socks :-)

The other yarn I ordered is called Firebird which is dyed on their Pharos base which is 75% superwash wool and 25% nylon so possibly harder wearing than the above yarn. I mainly ordered it for the colour though...

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How yummy is that! :-D

I'm going to save both these yarns for either the Summer holidays or the Autumn. Feeling more able to knit something a bit different to socks now. The first pattern I want to do is Alec by Sezza knits. There's a KAL going on in June so I took advantage of the discount code, bought the pattern and ordered some yarn. I dyed it a semi-solid red colour but unfortunately on my camera this has photographed as looking pink!

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It is definitely red, honest! I'm really looking forward to knitting this pattern, especially as Sarah has said she's working on an adult version which I think Mr Soaring Sheep would be very keen on :-)

For now though, I'm going to carry on knitting my sock. I'm about 2 inches off turning the heel of my second sock. I'll share some photos tomorrow for WIP Wednesday :-)

Friday, 24 May 2013

FO Friday Capricious Cardigan

I finished my Capricious Cardigan a little while ago now but with everything that's happened this month and the rubbish weather we've got I just haven't had a chance to get photos before now. However, we managed to dodge the showers yesterday and get some photos done in the garden!

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It's such a lovely pattern to knit. It's fingering weight yarn but knitted on 4.0 mm needles so it has a lovely drape. I've been wearing it loads. I knitted mine using Rowan Pure Wool in the Framboise colourway and it's very cosy. My gauge was slightly off so I had to fiddle with the sleeve decreases and I could have added some extra length but I'm happy with it and I wouldn't hestitate to knit it again :-)

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I've been playing around on Picasa to make these collages. It's quite fun actually! My assistant model is my 2 year old daughter. I felt awkward posing by myself and she wanted to come outside too :-)

For more FO Friday posts please visit Tami's Amis

Wednesday, 22 May 2013

WIP Wednesday

Hi, just a quick post from me today. I've got an extra child at home who is "ill" and I also ran a very busy toddler group this morning so I'm tired out and looking forward to putting my feet up and having a cup of tea. Extra child is fine, she was sick once yesterday morning but absolutely fine since. Unfortunately school has a compulsory 48 hour exclusion policy so she'll be back tomorrow.

As unexpected 7 year old's can mess up your plans for the day a surprising amount  I didn't get my sock cast off until nearly 10pm last night. I only had 20 rows of k1p1 ribbing to do but somehow I had no time...

I tried casting on a new sock yesterday evening and again this morning but I was too tired both times and kept muddling myself up and forgetting which needle was which and which bit went where... I'll try again after a cup of tea ;-)

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I can't wait to see what this yarn looks like as it's knitted up, it's so pretty! The colours are very Spring-like in my opinion. The colourway is called "Dazzle" and it's Laughing Yaffle Cloud Tweed Sock. Bit of mouthful but a nice effect.

I've also acquired two new books. I blame Sarah at Crafts from the Cwtch for the one about spinning. I've had a look through the first few pages and it looks very interesting. I can't remember where I saw the crochet squares book being recommended, probably several places as it seems very popular. Again a quick look through was very promising. I'm looking forward to having a browse through both over half term and maybe having a little play too ;-)

Now though I'm going to stop waffling, drink my cup of tea which is just about cool enough now and have a read of some other blogs for WIP Wednesdays at Tami's Amis

Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Decopatch Teddy

I mentioned yesterday that I'd been having a go at Decopatch. I've not actually been able to varnish it yet because after weeks of having a pot of varnish on a shelf in the kitchen I made Mr Soaring Sheep put it away in the garage and now I can't find it! Whoops :-S

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Decopatch is basically sticking little pieces of paper onto something to make it look prettier. I used "proper" decopatch paper which seems a little stronger than normal paper so more flexible and less likely to tear when wet. I didn't use the decopatch glue this time but I'm planning on getting some at the weekend along with some more paper and something to stick onto and that will be one of the crafts the children and I do over half term next week. I have done decopatch with them before using pictures of flowers cut out of magazines and then stuck onto terracotta pots. Makes a very cheerful design :-)

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I like the way it looks like teddy is holding a flower in her left paw. Completely accidental on my part lol.

Such a fun and easy to learn craft. I'm sure I'll be doing it again, I'm finding myself eyeing up picture frames, and pots and things in the house and wanting to paper over them lol. Very satisfying :-)

Have you ever had a go at decopatch? I'd love to see photos or read about any ideas you've come across.

I'm going to finish the ribbing on my socks now. I've hurt my wrist a little from knitting too much so I've been trying to do other things for a few days. Feeling better now though so I'll do the remaining 12 rows, cast off and then get something cast on for tomorrow's WIP Wednesday post. Busy is fun lol

Monday, 20 May 2013

Blooming Flower Cushion revisited and a cake

Morning guys, hope you had a good weekend. We celebrated my eldest son's 6th birthday. He only got two proper presents this year, a huge lego set and a new bike. He got some pj's and trousers too but he needed bigger ones anyway so they don't really count ;-) We went for a cycle ride in the afternoon and by the end of it I was regretting giving him a bike with gears. I could barely keep up with him!

When we came home Mr Soaring Sheep baked him a birthday cake and then I iced and decorated it in my usual tasteful style... Ok, maybe not that tasteful!

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It's an incredibly decadent chocolate cake with chocolate fudge icing, there is nothing delicate or pretty about it at all. Tastes pretty good though!


Several people commented on my FO Friday post last week asking about the round cushion. Yes I did make it, and I blogged about it here

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I used Lucy from Attic24's pattern here and yarn left over from my Granny Tree skirt

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What can I say, I love colour! It makes me happy seeing bright colours around the house or dressing my children. Given how grey the weather has been I've been even more grateful for colour than usual.


Tomorrow I've got a slightly different craft technique to show off to you, we got given a cardboard bear a couple of months ago so yesterday I had a go at "decopatch". I need to give the bear a coat of varnish but hopefully she'll have dried out by tomorrow so I can show her off :-)

Friday, 17 May 2013

FO Friday - Scrappy Granny Square Blanket

Hello!

The funeral yesterday went as well as can be expected. It was a long and tiring day so today we're going to be lazy and chill out. The project I have to show you I finished a little while ago and have been waiting for some sunshine so I can photograph it. I've given up waiting though as apparently we're not having any sunshine this year so you'll have to put up with photos taken indoors ;-)

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I've made this blanket to go over my youngest child's toddler bed but I've not added a border so in time when she moves up to a single bed I can add to it. I guess technically this means it's not finished but who cares lol

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It's a huge mass of different colours, no real pattern and completely unique. I love it :-) I used the "Join as You Go" method to turn my random squares into a blanket. It's a nice method and worked for this project although I do like the effect of single crocheting squares together as well which I might employ for my next blanket whenever that get started.

For now, as it's coming up to Summer (apparently!) and my daughter has no need of a blanket on her bed it's going to stay on the back of my sofa for a bit of colour and snuggly warmth in the evenings when the children have gone to bed and I'm knitting away :-)

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Thanks for dropping by to my little corner of the internet. For more FO Friday posts visit Tami's Amis and I'll see you again in a bit. Hopefully with another pair of socks to show you and my finished cardigan once I've roped my husband into taking some photographs for me. Have a good weekend!

Thursday, 16 May 2013

Heel Options

I knew I'd seen a list somewhere of different heel options and finally found it. It's on ravelry so I believe you need to be a member before you can read it but if you're reading knitting/crochet blog anyway then chances are you will be! Anyways, the list is here.

I'm looking forward to having a good long list through all those links when I've got some free time and an internet connection that is ridiculously slow :-S

Today though I'm going to carry on knitting my simple socks with the Sweet Tomato heel because it helps de-stress me.

Wednesday, 15 May 2013

WIP Wednesday and a FO

Hi guys! I was very organised and wrote out today's post last night. Logged into blogger this morning and went to change some of it and instead the whole thing got deleted. Grr! Serves me right for trying to be organised and assuming technology doesn't hate me ;-)

Well I'm still working on my socks. I cast off the first one yesterday afternoon and cast on the pair that evening. I've not got much done yet but that's ok because it will be some nice knitting for the car tomorrow

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My next project will be another pair of Toe Up socks knitted in this beautiful yarn by Laughing Yaffle in a colourway called Dazzle

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I'm going to use Judy's magic cast on for the toe again as I really like how it looks. I'm not sure what sort of heel to do though. I've done a Short Row heel using wrapped stitches and a Sweet Tomato heel but I'm not happy with either of them. Does anyone have any favourite techniques they'd recommend I try? I've heard of slip stitch heels, gusset heels and eye of partridge heels.


Anyways, as the title of this post says I have a FO to show off too. These are my Recycled socks which were frogged from another pair of socks that didn't fit very well and so I wasn't wearing them. I'm much happier with these :-)

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Ok, so I don't have the ankles for modelling socks but who cares! I have warm, cosy and colourful feet, what more can you want lol

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The yarn was by Flamboyance Yarns in their Box of Crayons colourway. I prefered how the yarn looked on the toes and heels as I think it mixed better rather than having the big pink stripes. I still like them though :-)


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I'm dashing off this morning but I'll be back in the afternoon to check out some more WIP Wednesday posts at Tami's Amis. Thanks for dropping by :-)

Monday, 13 May 2013

Still sock-ing

I cast on a new pair of socks yesterday morning and by the evening I was starting to turn the heel! It's amazing how much faster just knitting plain stockinette is lol. I used Judy's magic cast on for the toe, it is awesome! Definitely my favourite cast on for toe up socks, it's brilliant. I did a Sweet Tomato Heel for the heel and I've got mixed feelings about it:

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Excuse the rubbish photo, my camera is at the repair shop :-(

I don't like the way the stitches are a bit raised in places. Not sure if that will improve with blocking or whether it gets neater with practice. I think I'm going to try another type of heel for the next pair of socks, does anyone have any suggestions?

Oh and in case anyone is interested, the yarn I'm using in the above photo is Laughing Yaffle sock in a colourway called "Jewel Box". It's gorgeous to knit and I love the way it's striped. I'm very tempted to buy some more of it but after totting up how much yarn I've got and finding I've gained 6 miles since last year's Stash Flash. Whoops :-S I blame discovering lace knitting, sock knitting and crochet!

Perhaps a little bit of stash-busting is called for!

Saturday, 11 May 2013

Stashin' Saturday

It's been a week since we lost DH's Gran. The funeral is next week. Feeling more in control of my emotions now although still sad and not particularly perky. Trying to take things gently. I finished the first sock yesterday evening and I'm now 10 rows off turning the heel for the second one. I just sit and knit, read and listen to music. It's peaceful and meditative.

I'm going to wind another skein of sock yarn in a bit so I can cast on another pair once these are finished. I've done a short row toe and heel for these socks because I don't have to concentrate very much doing one. The next pair I'm going to have a go at Judy's magic cast on and Cat Bordhi's Sweet Tomato heel. I was originally thinking of maybe a slip stitch heel but decided to google and realised I've been using the Sweet Tomato heel technique for doing short rows on longies for years! I figured if I search out a variety of different toes and heels then eventually I will find the formula for my "perfect" sock :-)

So this isn't a picture-less post I thought I would share with you my latest yarn purchases. Well, actually I bought them last month but kept forgetting to take photos of them. These are just quick snaps on my phone but it will give you an idea of the colours. They are both sock yarns by Schoppel-Wolle. The first is Zauberball in the Summer Meadow colourway:

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I think it may become socks or perhaps a shawl. I'm thinking Wingspan would be a lovely way of showcasing the slow colour changes?

The other yarn is Crazy Zauberball which has two different coloured plys (plies?) to give this pretty effect. This colourway is called Indian Rose

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This one is DEFINTELY becoming a shawl. Probably something very simple like a Traveling Woman or a Multmonah

I'm saving these for after I've finished my sock knitting urge. I find the rich colours soothing and I'm looking forward to knitting with them when my brain is ready to concentrate on something a little more complex than sock knitting.

Baby steps. I'll get there when I'm ready. Hope you guys have a good weekend :-)

Wednesday, 8 May 2013

Sometimes...

When you're tired and struggling to summon the effort for anything some mindless knitting can be just perfect. Over the past couple of days I've finished my scrappy granny blanket and my cardigan. I'll take photos of both at some point, possibly when the sunshine comes back.

This morning I cast on a pair of socks. The yarn was from my Leyburn socks. I wasn't wearing them because of the fit so decided to frog and just make a simple vanilla pair.

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They are just plain stockinette with a short row toe and probably a short row heel. Simple and mindless. It's about all my brain can cope with at the moment. (Pattern from Socks from the Toe Up by Wendy D Johnson)

I'll be back blogging and commenting again soon. I just need some time to get my head straight again. I'm still reading, it's just finding the words is difficult :-(

Saturday, 4 May 2013

Sad news

My OH's Gran passed away this morning. Forgive me for needing to be quiet for a bit

:(

Wednesday, 1 May 2013

WIP Wednesday

Hi guys!

Guess I went a bit quiet after the post-fest that was Knitting and Crochet Blog Week! To be honest the past few weeks have been hard work for my family and I, including a seriously ill family member who we are all concerned about. We're all tired out and desperate for a quiet weekend with some sunshine so we can just chill out and warm up.

Understandably not much crafting has gone on! I did mange to finish the first sleeve of my cardigan yesterday though. Realised near the end that I'd made a bit of a boo-boo with my gauge so ended up ripping it back and re-doing it with the decreases wider spaced

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I've done 3/4 length sleeves as described in the pattern. I am tempted to make another one of these with long length sleeves though. Obviously I've got a few ends to weave in and it's unblocked but you can start to get an idea of the shape of this cardigan, it looks nicer when worn :-)

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I decided to do this pretty cuff detail rather than do a simple garter stitch cuff. It's quite subtle (partly due to my gauge issues again) but I think with a little blocking it will look fine. Hopefully I'll be able to get the cardigan finished, blocked and ready for photographing over the Bank Holiday weekend. Then I guess I'll have to decide what to make next...

Joining in with Tami's Amis for WIP Wednesday

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