Sunday, August 27, 2006

Tinking Back Sunday

(Those in the rock persuasion will get that title on a different level... )

Ahem. I proudly present....

The Jaywalkers! I know the lighting is pretty bad here but you get the idea. I wore them yesterday and they were super comfortable and looked great in my Converse All Stars (which are black with pink trim). I felt fab in possibly the brightest socks ever made!

The next sock project is now Tropicana in my first ever skeins of Lornas Laces:

This is a close-up of the stitch pattern. I took this yesterday, trying to decide whether the pooling of the colours bothered me. The blue/ pink areas seem to move around in a swirly spiral fashion. I think I can live with that.
As you can see I plodded on today to this stage:

So where's all the tinking you ask??

Aah. Well I got to the heel about tea time today. The pattern instructions for the short row heel seemed a little complicated so when it says (and I put it in my own words here) "..use the heel method of your choice.." I thought Yay I'll short row the heel using Wendy's method. Except in all my excitement I forgot that when incorporating your stitches back to the number you start with, you need to double wrap them. I ended up needless to say with a really messy heel plus it was too narrow so I needed to amend that too.

Now tinking is ok in small doses. But when tinking short rows it's a nightmare. All told it took me about and hour and a half to get back to unravelling and re-knitting the heel. (The title is apt simply because it's Sunday and I was also listening to Kerrang Radio whilst tinking and Taking Back Sunday have a new single out which I love).

I am proud of the sock so far though... it's progressed well and it's unusual to see a pattern without ribbing at the top, so we'll see how that turns out too. I reckon it's ideal for hospital since it has a memorable pattern repeat, but not quite as mindless as stockinette. I think I'm getting the hang of this sock lark.

I realise I haven't shown any piccys of the ponchette... it looks a little weird on over the bump. Not bad weird just weird. I will post some up eventually.

Well apart from sock knitting I haven't done a great deal. No surprise there then! I did sort out a few things in the nursery and put up the pram ready for when the baby does eventually decide to show. I figured I ought to know how it works before I actually need to use it.

The living room is now pretty much finished apart from the loose odds and ends to be tied up. It's been lovely having a tidy space to live in again. However the bedroom is a bomb site now thata few things have had to move up there. Ho hum... something to do this week while we wait for baby!

I think I'll drink my cocoa and snuggle into bed... all this sitting on my backside knitting has tired me out! ;o)

Friday, August 25, 2006

I have finished objects!!!

and no pictures :( sorry. I cannot blame blogger today- it's coz we're still decorating the living room and actual access to the computer is tricky never mind fussing with the camera cables etc.

I WILL post pictures though. I have finished:

*Jaywalker socks in HipKnits 'Bouquet' Sock yarn. (finished 24/08/06)

*Ponchette using Araucania's Atacama hand dyed 100% Alpaca. (finished 23/08/06)

I'm soooo pleased with both my FOs. The ponchette has turned out wonderfully- even DB likes it! He's not quite so fussed about the socks, but he's a colour-led person and I think the neony pink and green effect probably doesn't grasp him like it does me!

So whats on the needles? Well I still have the cabled jumper on hold... I don't quite have the concentration skill atm for chart and I've decided I want to enlarge and separate the charts as they have different numbers of pattern repeats in them.

I have Antoinette, the Cotton Rope Cardigan from the summer Rowan magazine. She is actually almost finished. I'd sneakily done some work on her without telling you! Her sleeves are both completed now and all I have left to do is finish the main collar. Except it's like 130 st and 22 rows of cable rib on straight needles- hence very heavy and makes my arms ache. I think I'll get that completed when the bump is gone as I'll actually be able to knit in my lap again and it wont be such a drama. Nowadays I'm knitting sorta sideways. :oS

I have Bryony's cardigan to finish sewing up and 1/2 of the collar to do. This is Callum from Rowan Junior in Magnum Chunky. It also needs a zip and I reckon that'll be a job for Mom to do!!!

I have lots of UFOs, I admit. Theyr'e in the stash draws and someday I'll get around to them!

Did anyone see the felted bag in this months Simply Knitting? It's done in Chunky Print. I managed to get some on sale from Yarnsmith in the Deep End colourway (grey/turquoise/blue/cream) and I've finished the front and nearly the back already. I only cast it on yesterday morning- it's a great quick knit and it is actually looking to be a substantial size. I'm not looking forward to sewing it up, I've only done felted bags in the round before. It's for my sister Kaye's birthday, I think she'll like it.

I'm going to frog the leaf lace socks as I've cast them on the smaller 2.25mm brittanys which I bought a few weeks ago. I think with my feet slightly bigger atm that they'll be too small. I will re-start them on the addi 2.5's I think. I'm itching to start something in my Lorna's Laces, so I think I'm going to look for a pattern today and cast them on for hospital sock knitting. I really don't envisage me getting any done, but the leaf lace socks are definately too intricate to take in with me!!!

What do you think to these? They look nice without being lacy and though their colour doesn't strike me in that picture I reckon they could look nice in Desert Garden LL.

Right... I'll read some more blogs and fish around for a pattern... and do some knitting until the decorating recommences for today.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Aargh still no pictures

I did intend to update with some pictures, except Blogger is still being a pain in the a*&%.

Thankyou to Tutmut and Knitonlybutalso for the lovely comments. I'm doing o.k. I feel a little fed up now I have little more than a week to the due date (and I know it will be probably be longer than that before it pops) :o(

I've been painting in the living room since about 5:30am this morning.... so about an hour and a half. The living room is still in the early stages of decoration and it's driving me mental that I can't do it myself. I've only put the first coat of gloss on the window frame and ledge- so nothing too strenuous, though I'm going to put my feet up with some cocoa and a film and the knitting now. Funny how you just HAVE to get up and do somehing no matter how stupid it seems to someone else.

The ponchette is 2/3 done, I have only 10 repeats which is 100 rows before it is finished. It sounds a lot, but I've managed 200 rows since Tuesday.... which is unheard of for me and something which is so straightforward. For something so simple, it hasn't bored me at all and it's been such a joy to use this alpaca hand dyed from Araucania. The page on HipKnits has disappeared so maybe I was unbelievably lucky to get it before it was discontinued altogether!!!!
I reckon I'll have over half of what I got left for something else too so I got 2 projects for the price of 1 as well!!!

The sock knitting has taken a bit of a back seat I'm afraid. I was so close to completing the pair of Jaywalkres without getting SSS, but it's not too bad- only the foot left to do as I've done all the heel shaping and instep. I reckon if I get to finish the ponchette, the sock will go with me in my hospital bag when the time comes. Am I being naiive to think I'll get any time to knit during my stay in hospital??!!

Well I'll not drivel on any more, I'll try and update the pictures again later.


Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Is it Christmas?

No not quite, but the parcel I had today was still pretty good!

With a nose for a bargain, I couldn't resist a Buy One Get One Free Offer. Hand dyed alpaca from HipKnits of all places! Well I ordered four purple (to get 8) and thought even if it isn't fantastic quality it's still a good buy right?

Well I was delighted when this came in the post this morning and is not only really really good quality but pretty and unbelievably soft. Mmmmm. I sat and fondled it for a while, and couldn't just leave it alone. It's like giving a chocoholic a Mars bar and telling them to wait until after dinner.

(ok I've just tried to get the images onto blogger and it wont let me so I'm annoyed now that I can't show off my new stash enhancement)

Where was I... oh the lovely alpaca had to be cast on for a project. I couldn't just leave it, so I cast on for this. I know it's a poncho-like affair, but I saw it on Insaknitty's blog and even though it's by an american/cnandian company, I emailed the company and asked if I could purchase the pattern but get a downloadable .pdf file. They were really helpful and I got it in no time at all and didn't have to muck about with postage from america etc etc.

I was also going to show you my new haircut and a picture of the guinea pigs resting on my ever growing bump. Damn blogger and it's image upload problems. I'll try again later. So for now you'll just have to imagine cuteness and a new bob.

O.K. I'm going to find some food and motivate my DB who's dutifully decorating the living room before the baby appears. Let's face it, in my condition I can't do much more than motivate (basically make tea and keep the good comments and snacks going).

I'll update with the pictures soon hopefully. Ta ta for now!

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Now I only went to look right....

However, I added to our family yesterday, and not by having the baby. Dammit.

We now have 2 little male guinea pigs called...*drumroll*.... Pedro and Yoshi.

This is Pedro... he's a little scruffier and more cheeky.

This is Yoshi, a bit more skittish and quiet.

Although the pigs were initially mine, we decided to name one each and so I named pedro... kinda looks like a spanish imigrant that smiles a lot... and DB named Yoshi for his panic dash (if you haven't played SuperMario World then I'm sorry but it's a little dinosaur who eats things by shooting his tongue out but goes off in a crazy panic when spooked. Very cute.)

I love this pic of me and Pedro:

He is tiny compared to my huge bump!! These pics are good coz DB took them with a proper digital camera as opposed to me using my phone. They were took when I brought them home, so they're a bit dumbstruck on these but after settling we gave them some big fuss last night and they really became friendly (though Yoshi peed on me... could be a compliment?)

I also bought DB some fish for the tank. Sharky and catfish were a little lonely in the big tank so I bought another silver shark, a redfin shark and a pair (man and wife) of swordtails. Unfortunately the second shark didn't make it and DB had some euthanasia to perform as he really didn't take the journey well and wasn't going to make it.

So really I didn't get much done yesterday. I have done some more on the 2nd Jaywalker.. I'm halfway through the heel flap so I hope to have them almost finished today :o) That of course does mean sacrificing some housework, but thats ok right?

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

The Sock Bug

Now I have been bitten by the sock bug. It's contagious. All of you bloggers and your socks in pretty colours and sizes and shapes.... and I cought the bug from you. Just saying it's your fault.

I started some Jaywalkers on Friday night. Like 11pm friday night because I was bored...

and got to this stage by around Sunday evening...

Which became this by Monday and look I actually cast on the second sock!!

If you wanted to know, the yarn is Hip Knits sock yarn in 'Bouquet'. I actually got it from Get Knitted a while ago when I bought the dye-your-own kit as well.

Of course, Sunday evening I was blog reading and thought Hmmm... I'm going to investigate other sock avenues. Big Mistake.

This led to purchasing (which isn't really allowed at the moment) and the parcel which arrived yesterday (quick I know!!)...

which contained Brittany Birch DPNs 15cm 2.25mm, some Opal Uni, a Fiber Trends Leaf Lace sock pattern and.... some Lorna's Laces in Desert Garden.

Now I have been restrained as far as the Lorna's Laces Sheperd Sock is concerned because it is too beautiful to do anything with but touch and stare at lovingly.

Mmmm yum!

On the other hand I have to do something when parcels arrive so to test out the DPNs which are not only smaller, but birch....

I cast on the Leaf Lace socks. in the Opal Uni.

This is a fairly good likeness of the colour... maybe slightly greener. They're not as difficult as i thought, though being lace I have to concentrate hard.

Fiona's review:

The pattern is good though. It has either written or charted instructions and clearly written so even I can understand. I'm testing my chart reading applications and actually found it easier to keep track of the row I'm on (surprised!) and I'm making less mistakes than I thought.

The Brittany DPNs are really lovely. The smaller length makes them easier to handle and i don't keep poking myself in the eye/belly/boobs with the ends now and if I do it hurts less than Addi aluminiums! I am afraid I could snap them, but they must come with the 5yr guarantee for a reason right?

The Opal Uni is about what I expected. Being very inexperienced in sock yarn it's difficult to compare. However it is nice, one colour makes it easier to do the lace pattern and there is lots of it for the price so no quibbles.

I love the Get Knitted site. Just saying.

I'd better jump in the shower as I'm going to LOOK at guinea pigs and tropical fish. I shouldn't really buy anything today but you know that's the worst thing when you go to LOOK isn't it. I'll let you know what happens.... ;o)

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

You have to have seen it to believe it!

Not really an informative post this morning, but thought I'd say thanks to Purlpower for her amazing and frightening pictures. You really must go have a look for sure ;o)

Anyhow, the concreting got done yesterday. The poor boys worked in the rain all day under a makeshift tarpaulin tent which I very helpfully named "Camp Concrete". I didn't take pictures though as they probably would have gotten upset and refused to work for fear that I was making fun of them. Well I guess I am... ;o)
Today I'm awaiting the arrival of my cotbed and mattress for the baby's room. So exciting! Although it does now mean I cannot leave the house until it gets here... no time specified... and I have my groceries being delivered tonight as well. So an indoor day for me then.
Last night I received the most wonderful knitted cardigans, booties, hats, shawl and cape from my "auntie" Margaret (who of course is a friend of mom's and no relation, but they become honorary aunties). When I get the time I'll try and take some photo's which do them justice as they are just lovely and mostly 3ply! Oh the patience. I especially love the cape and shawl. She said it was the last shawl she's ever going to make so I'm feel priviledged that I had the last one!
Right....better get on with the relaxing I'm supposed to be doing ;o)