Thursday, 31 March 2011

Day 4: Where are they now?

2KCBWDAY1 A Tale of Two Yarns - day one of knitting and crochet blog week

Whatever happened to your __________?
Write about the fate of a past knitting project. Whether it be something that you crocheted or knitted for yourself or to give to another person. An item that lives with you or something which you sent off to charity.

I've been thinking about this topic and decided that there was no way that I could choose just one project, so I chose three.

First up is actually my most recently completed project, the Turn a Square hat that I knitted for Tom.
In the depths of winter he asked me to knit him a hat. When asked what kind of hat he simply repeated 'Just a hat' like it was that simple. When I showed him all the patterns on Ravelry he was amazed at the choice there was, but not as amazed as he was when I finally managed to get him into my LYS to choose the yarn. He genuinely had no idea of the range of yarns available - the different weights, blends and effects - and was for once speechless. He finally settled on the yarn and is really pleased with it, although not as pleased as the boys are.......


Next up is my Shalom cardigan.... Ever since I saw the pattern I knew that I wanted to knit one, and I finally found some wool for it a couple of months ago. Since I finished it, it has either been on, in the was or slung on the back of a kitchen chair ready to throw on at the next opportunity....

And last but not least is my Girasole. This has now become part of the furniture and is at the end of the sofa everyday, just waiting for poorly snuggles, or that time in the evening when the heating has gone off and is not quite time to go to bed, or maybe when teddies need it.... It is definitely my favourite project so far.

Wednesday, 30 March 2011

Day 3: Tidy Mind, Tidy Stitches

How do you keep your yarn wrangling organised? It seems like an easy to answer question at first, but in fact organisation exists on many levels. Maybe you are truly not organised at all, in which case I am personally daring you to try and photograph your stash in whatever locations you can find the individual skeins. However, if you are organised, blog about an aspect of that organisation process, whether that be a particularly neat and tidy knitting bag, a decorative display of your crochet hooks, your organised stash or your project and stash pages on Ravelry.

Tidy..... hmmmm... that is definitely not a word that I would use to describe myself, nor would anybody who knows me in real life! My yarn stash is truly one big organised chaos.... with a little less of the organised.

Not bad considering that 12 months ago I had nothing!

In there is a mix of stunning single ply lace weight, beautiful sock yarn, cheap acrylic all the way through aran, chunky and up to super chunky.

I had planned to take photos of each place in the house where they all were but I think your browsers may have crashed due to the number of pictures that would have involved. There was some in the kitchen, be the computer, on the floor behind the sofa, the dining table, our bedroom, on the sofa from last night.... then the bags and basket.... you get the picture.

Whole balls are mixed in with part used balls as well as WIPs and things that realistically I'm never going to finish. All my needles, hooks etc are in a jumble on the dining table behing my sewing machine (and don't even ask about my fabric stash).

I definitely aspire to be mush more organised but it just never happens so my plan for today is to at least get all my WIPs into one place and decide whether I am ever going to finish them. Anything that does not survive the chop will be ruthlessly frogged.

If I'm really good I might update this post later so that you can all see my hard work..... we'll see!

I did it!! I sorted it all out! See....

Now in the basket I have my patterns in the cream bag and books along with hibernated projects in the stripy bag that WILL get finished (like the Hemlock Ring from Monday) and massive balls of stuff that I got given and have no idea what to do with...

Then I've sorted all the random balls out and put them in the big green bag, with my Granny Stripe Blanket and the yarn for that in the blue bag....

Then finally all my scraps are in the small green bag and current projects are in the brown bag and patterned purse....

Much better. Now the challenge is to keep it that way.......

Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Day 2: Skill + 1UP

Look back over your last year of projects and compare where you are in terms of skill and knowledge of your craft to this time last year. Have you learned any new skills or forms of knitting/crochet (can you crochet cable stitches now where you didn’t even know such things existed last year? Have you recently put a foot in the tiled world of entrelac? Had you even picked up a pair of needles or crochet hook this time last year?

This time last year my knitting consisted of simple garter stitch scarves for children, I can't believe how far I've come in such a short space of time!
Over the last 12 months I've learnt to knit lace, increases, decreases, cables (only this week!), short rows, circular knitting, dpns, socks (well, two seperate socks from different patterns).... the list is endless. I have also learnt to crochet from scratch,

The single project overr the last year that I have learnt the most from is definitely my Girasole blanket.
I was encouraged to knit it by some lovely ladies from a forum that I use as my first 'proper' project and I'm so glad that I listened to them. This project alone taught me most of the skills that I have acquired over the last year and I loved every minute of the 6 weeks I spent knitting it.
My crochet has gone from being completely non-existant to the Japanese Flower Shawl that I showed you yesterday, as well as having a Mega Granny Stripe blanket on the go too..

I would never have believed that I would manage to produce the things that I ahve over the last year and honestly think that I will be knitting and crocheting until I am no longer physically able, I just love producing things with my hands that are then loved by my family and friends in turn.

Monday, 28 March 2011

Day One: A Tale of Two Yarns

My favourite yarn at the moment is Caron Simply Soft and I am loving it!!! I was given 2 skeins of it when a friend emigrated so am knitting it up into this Oblique cardigan for myself, although I am waiting on a couple more skeins from the US to finish it off.... I cannot say just how much I love it. It is sooooo soft and unlike any Acrylic yarn I have knit with before, it feels so much more expensive than it is, and best of all it can be thrown in the washing machine, woo hoo!!!

 (this is an awful representation of the colour, it is actually Light Country BLue)
A very close runner up for favourite is this.....

It is a Love Yarn Alpaca/Merino/Nylon blend sock yarn from my LYS and I used it to make a friend some fingerless gloves for her bithday. I loved it so much that I just had to make the stole for myself from this pattern in an amazing Japanese Crochet book..... swoon...

At the other extreme my most despised yarn is Paton's Smoothie. I have knit simple garter stitch scarves for friends children in this and it was fine until I tried something more intricate. Alf wanted a blanket so I started this Hemlock Ring Blanket for him in the Smoothie because it is really lovely and soft.... big mistake. It splits. A lot. And it makes my hands hurt. So this sits at the bottom of my knitting bag for when I need a change from what I am working on but I am really not enjoying it at all. I won't give in though..... mainly because I won't want to knit it into anything else an am quite far along this now!!

Here goes.....

Well, Ive been meaning to start this blog for weeks and Sarah from Crafts From the Cwtch has just given me the kick to start!!
This week is Knitting and Crochet Blog Week 2011 (See here) and with my love of all things yarny I thought that this was the perfect excuse to actually get going.

Knitting and Crochet Blog Week Banner Blue

I'm hoping to get plenty of blogging done about life with my amazing little men too, as well as my crafting and anything else that i wish to ramble about.

Wish me luck!