Friday, 29 October 2004

Stitch n' Bitch

Last night was stitch n' bitch, it was fabulous! A couple of new members inlcuding Carmen, and a girl came up to our table and was so excited because she has wanted to join a knitting group for ages, so she is coming to our meeting next week.

Marie showed us samples of the lovely things she brough in San Francisco, and she also brought me home these:


I was very chuffed, I am going to make a hat and gloves from this, hopefull with cables.

My water shawl is on it's way, I managed a fair chunk last night, and hopefully can have a good go at it this evening.

I am going to swatch my colintette once the shawl is given in on saturday, Phew!

Tuesday, 26 October 2004

A great day.

I'm still on the second glove, MUST ..... KNIT..... WATER..... WRAP.....isn't it funny how when you have to do something for a deadline, it becomes slightly stressful even though you love doing it?

More excitingly I believe I have found a much cheaper substitute for kidsilk haze from Texere yarns, it hasn't got silk in it, but it is pure kid mohair and is very very fine and undyed, but that more fun for me!

I think that perhaps the silk in Kidsilk haze gives it extra strength, however I am going to experiment and am not going to use it for everyday wear.

I want to make KARIS, one for me and one for a special friend, who I can't mention because she ocasionally reads this blog. So it's on order! Oooh I can't wait.

If dyeing it comes out nice, perhaps I'll do a competition to win some.

Monday, 25 October 2004


I had a wonderful weekend, full of crafts, parties, and exersise.

So saturday I finished my first glove, and cast on for the second, oddly I followed the instructions for a womens medium sized glove, but it ended up too big for me but perfect for Anth. I am happy with this, but I need to check the sizing a bit more next time.


Sunday was reserved for spinning, and knitting. I decided to spin some mohair singles, it's quick to spin but it seemed very difficult to get the fibres to lay flat, they seemed to stick out at every opportunity.


This is about 4 ounces.

I then decided to have a go at mixing silk and wendsleydale, I carded it together with handcarders, and when I spun it, it left tufts and looked crap. So then I tried sort of feeding them in together and here is the result. I am very pleased, it's very shiny and soft.


I need to dye it and dry it to set the twist. I will dye it with the mohair and some of the yarn I brought from London, so it is from the same dyelot, and then knit them all into a scrumtpious top.

Talking of mixing yarns, I still haven't done a swatch for my colinette.

Finally, I managed to knit a large chunk on my water wrap, I'm nearly a third of the way through, but it needs to be finished my friday, so I am going to have to get a move on.


Anth actually started to sew his jumper together, it looks great, but he is unhappy with one of his side seems and wants to do it again before he models it.]

In the afternoon, we went for a really long run because we are training for the london marathon, and went running for 1 hour and 35 minutes (about 12 miles)!!!!!! I have never run for that long before, 40 minutes was the maximum! I just feel so good, awake, and alive!

The weird thing is I am losing a little bit of weigth because of running, BUT it comes off everywhere apart from your hips and bottom, and just serves to accentuate them! AHHHHH!

Friday, 22 October 2004

Not much knitting going on, but thats about to change!

I can't carry on with my "water wrap" until I get some more beads,

no glove progress yet, because it needs a good amount of my attention because I haven't done it before, and have not started on my colinette because I'm scared and I like the idea of have such wonderful things in my stash. The solution?

Get over myself and damn well start!

Funny thing is, in the good old days, when I couldn't understand patterns I would try anything, now I have got into a rut and can't just cast on and see what happens, which is usually when the most amazing things occur. So this weekend I am not knitting anythng which requires a pattern from a book.

I will swatch up my colintette and experiment with it, I will spin some mohair and see what happens, and finish my water wrap.

Is there anything I have done? well yes a little:

I have finally finished my hello yarn sock and have cast on for the second, these are all mine and no body is having them, they are so cutchy and warm. (cutchy/cutch is the welsh slang for cuddle)

here's a picture:


I cannot wait for Marie to come back from San Francisco and show me all her goodies, I especially like the pictures on Mariko's Blog of the knitting bloggers trip out. I will hopefully see all the lovely things on monday evening at Stitch and Bitch.

Finally, this afternoon I am going to show carmen our LYS so she can get some yarn for a project and then we can go for coffee and do a bit of knitting, Yeah Baby Yeah!

Tuesday, 19 October 2004

So the Gloves....

Here is the glove.

I have had to redo things a couple of times in order to reduce the gaps etc. but I'm getting the hang of it.


I have nearly finished my sock which is very thick and will be very warm. then i can cast on for the second one, they knit up so quick! I am going to see a shakespear play this evening, so I am taking my sock with me just incase.....!

Monday, 18 October 2004

Second attempt.

So here goes my second attempt because I just clicked the wrong button and lost my post.

Ok so this weekend was meant to be knitting, dyeing, spinning and knitting on my knitting machine, I managed a few things but no dyeing and spinning.

I did however manage to make a rayon scarf to dye in lots of colours, on my knitting mcahine, (bottom left) and made a swatch for my linen I brought in London, I washed and blocked it, and it has the most wonderful drape, and is not rough at all, I can't wait to get started on a jumper on my knitting machine. The swatch is the top right.

I also washed and blocked a brown wool swatch, which is also lovely, I have some plans for this too.


Secondly I cast on for my water theme shawl, I used the loopy yarn I dyed (in the last post) with a strand of rayon and a strand of kidsilk haze. I also put clear beads onto the kidsilk haze and it looks like water droplets! I'm very pleased so far, but I need more beads, you can't really see them very well on this picture.


Finally I cast on for some gloves with the last of my silk garden, they are coming on very well, they are quite chunky and fit Anth perfectly, it's the first time I have ever made gloves, and they are not anywhere near as hard as I though they would be, although Anth did have to help me a little bit when I got stuck!?

Oh yes and he actually finished all the bits for his jumper yesterday, so I am hoping we are going to block it tonight so he can start stitching it together.

Friday, 15 October 2004

Madness, knitting and stitching parts 4 & 5.

Yesterday I was trying to see if I could create an animation for one of our experiments, I was having so much fun building my walking chicken, I forgot to update my blog!

So here we are with the two parts together.

I purchased a number of Addi turbo needles because Marie uses them and swears by them, so I got four pairs.


Two paris of these will be used to knit up the Lorna's lace yarn I brought:


I was drawn to these colours, they will be perfect for socks for Anth.

Secondly I brought some hemp yarn, which is good for the knitting machine, it is undyed, but I've got some special dyes which will work on them. I'm not sure whether to knit a garment first and then colour it, or colour it and then knit it.

I said I would make scarfs from the hemp, and Anth suggested I shouldn't make anymore scarfs on my knitting machine, but instead break out of my comfort zone and have a go at making a jumper instead, I coughed loudly at this suggestion but I think he's right, so I said I would, only if he helped me set up the very complicated knitting shapey sizey thing that attatches onto the machine to make patterns easy.

He agreed, but I'm sure only because we have more scarfs that a scarf shop.

Here is the hemp, hopefully the next time you see this it will be a top, or jumper, Hmm.


Once washed the hemp has a fabulous drape, and feels really quite soft.

Now its the moment you have all been waiting for; COLINETTE!

I'm really glad the colours are quite accurate on these pictures. I brought 11 skeins of yarn all in the same colour way, but different yarns.

Here are 7 skeins of point 5.


Here are 2 skeins of silky chic and 2 skeins of the cotton and rayon ribbon, the name escapes me.


I was thinking perhaps and amazing jumper with these or a poncho. my mum has expressed the desire for a poncho, but I'm not sure these colours are really you are they mum?

I think I could use the green colintette I brought although I'm not sure there is enough. Hmm.

Oh last but not least, my alpaca, mohair and wool boucle I brought from texere, and dyed tuesday evening, to go make into the wrap.

here :


Wednesday, 13 October 2004

London part 3, Beads, buttons and habu.

So we went to the Habu stand which was really quite odd, there was yarn but the quantities were more suitable for weaving and were mega expensive. However that didn't really make any difference! there was a knitted cardigan which was made of paper yarn and mohair, I thought this was amazing, so I got some paper yarn here is a picture:


I also found tiny bundles of yarn with fluffy bits along it, I am going to knit this on about 5mm needles and strand it with the very finely spun steel from Habu!

Here is another picture!


Ok, so I needed beads and buttons to put on the things I make so here is the first one, which is just mad! Its really really huge, but will complete a collinette cardigan I made 2 years ago.


And here is a picture of my coat which desperately needed livening up, I saw these and straight away and knew that these buttons and my coat were meant to be!


Sorry about the picture it is bad lighting, it's been raining non stop and even with the lights on it looks like I took it in the middle of the night!

Oh and nearly finally here are a few ceramic buttons which I love.


And finally yesterday evening I managed to dye one of my skeins from texere yarns, in greens and blues ready for making a special wrap I have designed, which may be exhibited at the cardiff Knit and stitch show if I'm lucky, so i'll post a picture of the yarn tomorrow along with my lorna's laces and some scrumptious hemp yarn, and another glass bead which refuses to be photographed.

Tuesday, 12 October 2004

London Knitting and stitching show. Part 2 : Spinning, weaving and dying.

During our look around there were a number of yarn stores with hand dyed yarns, which were really beautiful, however being the sort of person who likes to have a go at everything, I decided that for the things which I could make, I would! So we went to the texere yarn Stall and picked up a number of things to dye. I had seen alot of Mohair boucles and loopy yarns which ranged from about £12 - £20 a hank. So here is the selection I purchased from them:


Notice there are also 2 very big balls of spinning rovings. The one at the top of the picture is cotswold wool from texere, but the one in the botton is wendsleydale. This has to be the scrummiest stuff on the planet, when you spin this up it has such an amazing lustre and is so warm. This was actually from the wendsleydale sheep comany, or something similar. From this stall I also brought some wendsleydale fleece, about 2lbs, it was raw so I need to clean it but, there was a beautiful cushion made with a plane knitted square and the locks of wensleydale were sewn in to make it shaggy, it was beautiful! Thats what I am going to make!

Here is a picture of the fleece:


I saw small boxes with about 15 grams of this stuff hand dyed for about £2.30 on another stall, hmm.

I also meet my weaving teacher there, which was lovely and was inspired to get my weaving started again, and I saw a beautiful woven scarf which was so soft and delicate, so I asked the lady on the stall what it was made from and it was a very fine merino, its very expensive but I think the hanks will go far, I would certainly get a couple of woven scarfs out of one hank. I need to dye it as well, but that just adds to the fun!

here is a pictures if it:


I have this weekend off so I am going to get started on some of the spinning and dying projects, you never know I might even get my loom out!

As for knitting, on the train we managed to get quite alot of knitting done, so I decided to start on a felted bag from the noro that my secret pal gave me, I have finished the knitting, and this is a picture of it pre felted:


Thats all for now, I'll try and include the habu and my pretty buttons tomorrow!

Monday, 11 October 2004

Oh my goodness me, what a weekend part one 1

Ok, so I going to have to serialise this in probably about 5 parts to get everything in not to mention to show you all the things that I brought. The show consisted of alot of knitting and alot of stitching and quilting. Thankfully I am not that bothered by stitching so we (Marie and I) managed to get to see all the knitting things in two days which we needed to. So in the up and coming posts will be: Colintette, Habu, lorna's laces and some great unknown british yarns, lots of things for Dying, and weaving and spinning!!!

So to start, we made our way to Colinette and it was amazing, here is a picture I managed to take, although it not very good because people were fighting to get to the yarn all the time we were there!


I started off by buying 3 skeins of zanzibar in the pierro colourway, and 2 skeins of shimmer 5 in the toscana colourway. I am hoping to get a small jumper from these, using both, I'm haven't quite decided how yet!


I also got some silky chic in the tapis colourway.


There will be more colintette, which to be honest is one of the most lovey yarns I have ever seen, but I am saving that for my last post.

There were quite a few exhibitions and there was a number of graduate showcases, they were fabulous but 2 graduates certainly caught my eye, here is a couple of pictures of work which I didn't record the names, but if anyone really wants to know I can find out:




However my 2 favourites were very simple but the work was beautiful here is a lovely top made by Lisa pattinson:


And my favourite, Amy Harrington from Manchester University:


Her work used shape in such a wonderful way, the garment above was done by felting mohair.

Ok, thats all for today folks, but i'll try and have a spinning and dying theme tomorrow!

Friday, 8 October 2004

AHHHH! We are going tomorrow!

I am so excited about going tomorrow to london for the Knitting and Stitching show, I just can't wait! I have brought a new bag especially for the trip! I am going to travel really really light. Just my PJ's and clean undies and the rest is history. Need to carry bags and bags of wool!

We have to get the 6.15 am train to london, but I don't think I will have any problem getting up because I will be so excited.

Massive post on Monday with laods of pictures!

Thursday, 7 October 2004

Thanks again secret pal!!!

Yesterday evening on my way to visit Marie I went to the post office to pick up an unexpected parcel, only to be fantastically suprised with my second secret pal package, I was very chuffed here is what it in it:


There are a set of beautiful hard wood double pointed needles which will be perfect for socks, a ball of scrummy sock yarn, some Noro kureyon in such lovely colours (I have already decided that this will be another mini tote, I've been dying to make another one. A 'yarn is love' pencil and a lovely card. It is a wonderful package thankyou secret pal!

I went to Marie's house so we could share our projects and also to plan our weekend in London at the Knitting and stitching show. The programme looks amazing! I am especailly wanting to go to the Habu yarn stall and also get lots of Noro. Marie has an excellent selection of noro pattern books, and I am absolutely hooked, so I guarentee there are going to be lots of pictures on monday. I am soooooo Excited.

Tuesday, 5 October 2004

I'm wearing my top!

So I tried very hard to take an adequate photo of me in my tank top, but it's not very good. However, I love it so much. It is incredibly comfortable and warm.


Look away now if you hate cats! Sage found somewhere other than my wool to sleep this morning!


Monday, 4 October 2004

A rather productive weekend.

So after being so busy last week, I was so up for getting loads of knitting done. Firstly, my ribber for my knitting machine came through the post on saturday and I was very very chuffed about that, I don't do much machine knitting because it's just not the same as hand knitting, but I do like the idea of doing some of the boring bits on the machine and then finishing stuff off by hand. So having been severely restricted without a ribber I decided to see if it could knit up some of my Rowan four ply soft into a scarf, and after a couple of disasters, I mastered it and came up with this:


it's really really soft and took.......... wait for it! About 15 minutes to knit and about 20 to cast it off the machine because I'm not very practiced at it yet, the cast off edge is not very good, but I'm working on it. I plan to add a nice ending to it from my new edging book.

So after I had made this, I was dying to feel needles in my hand, so I cast on for a pair of socks with the yarn I purchased from Hello Yarn it is knitting up lovely, I need a toasty pair for winter. here it is:


finally I am very pleased to say I finished my Tank top and it actually fits! I can't believe it! My own designs don't normally work very well, it is quite long but I wanted it to go over a pair of nice fitted trousers, gone are the days when I let my midrif hang out!


I was surprised yesterday to read on the label that silk garden contains mohair, but, once washed the mohair really sort of comes out! It really is scrummy. Once it is dry I will take a picture of it on, and post it.

Friday, 1 October 2004


I havn't even had time to post before now because It's just been mad!

I have been knitting to de-stress, and anth and I decided to make a cardigan and hat for baby Georgia, who is one on saturday, and is having a party. We decided we'd go with something home made, but anth doesn't knit very quickly so I'm not sure we'll get it finished by tomorrow, not only that but it's acrylic wool and it feels horrible to knit with, however, the pattern is very simple after we have cast on the fluffy edge, so I am tempted to finish it off on my knitting machine, providing I match the gauge, it will be a breeze, we'll see.

On the noro tank front, I haven't done any more than last time, however here is a picture if the very neat front with lovely decreasing, I'm so proud! I will put the pattern here if it works.

Here it is.