September 20, 2006

Filed under:News!,Works In Progress — Aileen @ 10:32

It has been a busy few days chez neels. I finally got the second sleeve of Granny Smith done and it is now blocking like a good cardigan on my floor.

This is the first time I’ve ever been bothered to block my pieces before sewing it all up. I just assumed it had all shrivelled up during the knitting process, but it hadn’t. In fact it is pretty much how I’d knitted it – only the body is about two inches longer than specified. I can’t remember if I opted to make the body longer or not. The cardigan is on the short side so it is probably no harm.

What else have I gots for ya? Well, there’s the freshly washed Pomatomus socks…

…and my never-photographed Jaywalkers…

…and of course my newly completed Magic Loop socks!

I casted on last night for my Clapotis in my new Lorna’s Laces… it is yummy. It is going to look so good!

In other news, check out this pattern for some funky fish mittens! I am never one to turn down fish – or mittens.

For the Love of Yarn is a new online knitting and crochet magazine I came across yesterday. And have a look at Michelle Knits’s blog. She just moved to Portland and now I want to move there too!

Today I think there will be more Alien Heads, more Clapotis and possibly a new pair of green socks. MMMM!

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September 17, 2006

Here is da nooze

Filed under:News!,Stash,Works In Progress — Aileen @ 11:40

As promised, I come bearing photos! Bibs on, please: here is some Lorna’s Laces…

On the top, Shepherd Sock in ‘Tuscany’ and on the bottom, Lion & Lamb in ‘Lakeview’. I cannot describe the wonderful silky sheen of the Lion & Lamb. It feels as though it will have wonderful drape. I got two skeins of this to make ‘Clapotis’ – original or what?! The Shepherd Sock will have to wait for a sock pattern worthy enough 😉 I must say, I am quite excited about this sock pattern over at Eunny Knits. Go check it out, you’ll see what I mean!

I had such a nice time visiting This is Knit in Blackrock. They have a great selection of wools and books, and lovely samples knit up hanging around (I particularly loved the little scarflets knit up out of the new Debbie Bliss Pure Silk and the ruffle scarf made from Noro). We sat and chatted for ages and it was great to see so many people coming in and out. They even wound my Lorna’s Laces into balls for me – no mean feat! There is a lot more than you’d think in a skein of Shepherd Sock! The Blackrock Market itself is very quirky and I enjoyed poking around after I’d left TIK.

I’m being very restrained and am determined to finish up at least one project before casting on for yet another! It looks like the second sock will be first up for finishing. I turned the heel and picked up for the gusset yesterday.

The second sleeve is being ignored for the moment until I get the sock done….

… as are the Alien Heads. One full repeat of the alien heads takes over an hour so I just haven’t gotten around to sitting down with the chart so far this weekend.

Ah! Yes! The results of my felting project! I threw the ridiculous leaf-coaster away. But here is the crocheted bag which shrank just a little bit more as it was drying (thank God).

Despite my worse fears, I think I may actually be able to use it.

So, before I go sit out in the sun with my sock and a hot cup of coffee, let me just point out that This is Knit is a wonderful place that everyone should visit! And that the new Crochet Me issue is up.

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September 16, 2006

I passed!

Filed under:News!,Stash,Works In Progress — Aileen @ 20:21

Yes, I passed! Thank you one and all for your very best wishes… they really helped. Now, I didn’t do fantastically well, but it wasn’t terrible and it didn’t fall apart (a very real fear). It was somewhere in the middle and my mark reflected that. But considering I hadn’t had the chance to give my pieces a go (like in front of an audience) at all before my exam, and that I’d been working full time up until about two weeks ago, I think it is an achievement to have passed this one 🙂 Also, it doesn’t matter very much as I am going into second year and it is this year’s results that count.

So! As a treat, I went on a little expedition out to Blackrock to check out This is Knit’s place today. It was wonderful! There was much chat, stroking of wool and purchase of wool! Afterwards, I went and had a cup of coffee and slice of chocolate cake before I came home. Joy!

A heel has been turned, one more set of Alien Heads has been worked, and 7 inches of sleeve has been cranked out. Stay tuned for Show’n’Tell tomorrow!

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September 13, 2006

Panic stations everyone!

Filed under:Music,News!,Works In Progress — Aileen @ 18:57

Oh God. The countdown has begun. My recital exam is on Friday at 11am. I hate this. The last few days always feel like the world is going to end at that time, and you’re just waiting it out, getting as much done as you can. In two days I have practically become a shut-in: I really need to go to the supermarket but it’s just not a priority right now. (I have no cheese and no broccoli). I can’t watch the weather any more, they keep talking about what it’s going to do on Friday. Whenever I hear that word, the room starts to close in and I get very breathless. And That’s why I spent yesterday afternoon making some felted stuff instead of practising!

I have this neat little digital recorder that I got in Germany. I’ve been using it to record my lessons and it is very useful. But I am afraid of it getting bashed about in my bag because it is quite lightweight. So I dug out some wool and crocheted this.

I couldn’t have overestimated the amount of shrinkage more. In fact, it hardly shrank at all! Sure, it got thicker and denser, but smaller? No. I threw it into the washing machine at 60 degrees on a full hour-and-a-half cycle, but it did practically nothing to it. I ended up having to douse it in boiling water/cold water and rub it vigorously between my rubber-gloved hands to get it to felt. Even then, there was still a lot of stitch definition. So in desperation, I chucked it into the tumble dryer this morning and I think this is the best I’m going to get.

I figured that while I was doing one felted thing, I might as well do at least another. Again, overestimating the amount of shrinkage, I crocheted myself this autumnal brooch. Don’t be fooled! This monstrosity is the size of a coaster.

The red is a different type of wool to the white. It felted more and pulled in the sides. So I got out my scissors and decided to give it a bit of a trim.

This is a decided improvement but I’m still not sure if one could stick it on one’s jacket!

My progress with the sock is better. I just started the toe shaping. I think toe shaping is definitely my favourite part of socks and probably the main reason I have yet to knit a toe up sock.

In other unphotographed news, I have started making up Bliss. I laugh every time I look at it because there is really not much work involved in making it up and I have been putting it off for about two months now!

Here is a pattern that is “hot for fall”. I heard about it on a podcast and decided to check it out. Restraint!!! I would love to knit this… but I also have about ten other sweaters I want to knit and even have wool for. It’s hard, isn’t it?

Ok, off to practice.

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September 12, 2006

Fatigue

Filed under:Knitting World Cup,News!,Works In Progress — Aileen @ 10:24

Phew! Yesterday was a helluva day. I had two hour and a half lessons, and it took me over an hour and a half to get home in the torrential rain. But I had my knitting with me and I got another repeat of the Alien Head top done. It’s official, they are alien heads. Lotus blossom my ass.

Sleeve #1 of Granny Smith is very nearly finished – it just needs that last sprint to the end! I’m going to finish that up today and GASP! start seaming up the body pieces. This cardigan has dragged out for nearly two whole months. I just want to be done with it.

I just couldn’t get to sleep last night. I was running a temperature and all the music and things that had been said to me in my lesson kept going around in my head. I had to give in in the end and spent a good hour turning the heel and sorting out the gusset on my sock.

In case you haven’t heard, the new Knitty is up and for the most part, I am impressed. Following a link from a felted bag project in the new issue, I came upon this. I would really like to make a felted bag, and I think the Coco Bag (scroll to the bottom) would be perfect. It doesn’t look as big as a Booga Bag.

Lastly – and I know this is unprecedented – but do you remember Bliss? That ill-fated Knitting World Cup project? Well, I have about four rows left on the last sleeve and then I have to just sew it all up. So I think I should get stuck into that because I need it to wear! Yesterday, for reasons unknown to me, I decided to wear a poloneck. Why? I knew I was going to be playing for two lessons, I know how hot I get when I play… I’ve got to start making myself wear lighter clothes.

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