Saturday, 26 November 2016

Diarising knitting

Everything I knit tends to end up on Ravelry. All well and good - it's an absolutely vital tool for noting down yarn, needles, how a particular yarn behaves while knitted, what I've made and when. But it's also handy to keep notes outside of Ravelry too. And sometimes I just forget to take photographs. So this morning, it's been heavily frosty and cold outside, and I couldn't go to the gym as I was waiting a delivery (yak down and black shetland/silk since you ask), so I got organised and took photographs of the last few things I've knitted.

This is the Icon Dress I knitted during this summer's Olympics. I'd originally bought the kit at the K&S show in 2012, then it kept slipping down the priority list. I wasn't happy with the way the pattern was written anyway - there are very few reasons not to knit in the round, and this wasn't one of them. So I cast this on as one piece (lots of stitches), and reversed the ss/reverse ss on the skirt to emphasise the pleats. And also de-emphasise the braids, which are now against a flat ss background.
I also changed the neck to a plain round finished with applied i-cord, which I much preferred from the square neck with ribbing and a false button placket, which is too susceptible to stretching out. I made deeper armholes too, as I'll be wearing this over t-shirts.

And then my Hoodie-in-a-Week, made back in September, finally got photographed too:
This yarn was spun up for Spinzilla 2015, from some CVM fleece I had squirrelled away. It wasn't a nice fleece, a bit short, so this was drumcarded and spun long draw into a 3ply yarn. It will pill, and is already.

I cast on the night before we left to go to Somerset on holiday, knitted furiously for all car travelling, on Porlock beach, most evenings, and finished it in less than two weeks (over the week itself it was mostly finishing). There are no seams here, just three needle cast-offs. The only stitching is the edge of the narrow hood facing. It's very warm and cosy if a tad short, but there's no more yarn.

This is the Flamborough cardigan, knitted up in July and August from yarn I bought at Baa Ram Ewe in January for an entirely different purpose. (It was supposed to be an Epistrophy, but the fabric just wasn't working.)
It's a very basic cardigan, no fastening at the front unless I use a pin, but the collar is lovely. Very nice construction, again no seaming, just picking up. The original inspiration for the pattern (not mine) was gansey knitting, but the green is so lovely and leafy that I couldn't resist finding a leaf pattern for this sailor-collar shape. It's been getting quite a bit of wear, and the Dovestone yarn, though it pills a little, picks off nice and will wear well.

This one's been on-going for much of the summer. I have a terrible habit of diving into Blacker Yarns' sale bins at the wool shows, and had found myself with an embarrassingly large amount of their 4ply yarns, mostly in olive green and grey. So most of the little circles-in-squares here are grey centres and green outsides. There is a bit of my dyeing too (over Blacker white), two shades of purple, and the occasional bit of handspun too. It's been being assembled over the last few weeks, and was finally edged off last weekend. It has used up all the yarn I wanted it too, and I have discovered the addictiveness of crochet blankets. There will be more.
Very satisfying to do. Though of course it does help that there is a sort of a colour-scheme, rather than just random leftovers.


And these are the current knitting. Both have already been knitted nearly to finish, then pulled back and re-started. The Miss Rachel sweater at the top was originally for me, but I wasn't really happy with the shaping and was about to run out of the grey Buachaille. Mum liked it, so I pulled it back completely, and have re-knit from the top down, in a smaller size, with no shaping. It's now simple knitting, just round and round, until I've finished the body and pick up the sleeves.

The Shornies hat below, from Ann Kingstone's Tups collection, has again nearly been finished, but the tension lied! I used the suggested needles (3.75) with Dovestone and it came out enormous even though my tension was apparently correct. So I've dropped to 3.25 for a much denser fabric, done one less sheep around than before,and it's coming out well.

Though I feel the urge to cast on even more stuff. And I need to do some spinning soon. But we've been without hot water for nearly three weeks now (repaired once, but our boiler is ancient and needs a new (old style) themostat, which will happen eventually. And I'm not boiling kettles to wash fleeces (though I have three new ones in that need doing soon). And three kilos of yak down arrived today.


Sunday, 13 November 2016

Online sales updated at last!

So here we are: finally, I've managed to find time and energy (in daylight) to start getting this year's fibres and yarns photographed and listed in my shop.

So far, I've got all the Full Circle sets on, plus some of the other gradients.

No yarn as yet, and lots more fibre to go.





Saturday, 5 November 2016

Last shows of 2016

So just a few words to cover the last few shows of 2016. We had to have Bil put to sleep the week before Bakewell Wool Gathering, so that rather put the dampers on everything before we started, but hey-ho, life goes on...

This was our stall at Bakewell. It was rather nice to have a wall behind us, and I complete rejigged the stall at the last minute as I thought I'd booked tables. In error, as it turned out. We were able to borrow one from Denise, and it turned out that one was all I needed. Look at the extra height I managed to get Gladys the Sheep up to!


Once again, the Full Circle sets were popular. And I'd dyed up a couple of orders for people to collect from me here. 


We always go down to Bakewell a day or two early and stay in a cottage just above the town. It was very strange only having one dog, but we still had a lovely walk on Stanton Moor, and went to say hello to the Nine Ladies dancing up there in the ancient oak woods.


The following weekend was Kendal Wool Gathering - and this is where I start to get exhausted, not having any time off. We set off just after 6am on Saturday morning to set up in plenty of time before opening, and were very pleased with out spot, just before a nice big window for natural light.


Lunil came with us, and assisted in the setting up. She's really rather good at this sort of thing.


So, that's another fibre-y year over with, and now I can settle down and hibernate for the winter, or could if I only didn't have the day job. I'm typing this up a week later, enjoying the decadence of a Saturday at home, finishing up a crochet blanket after a scamper through the woods with Lunil in the hope of wearing her out before tonight's fireworks banging.

New lamps are being bought at Ikea tomorrow, so I'm not reliant on daylight at weekends to photograph all my dyed fibre. The Etsy shop will be updated soon.