A less jovial post than planned

I’m rather cheesed off – I wrote a beautiful post singing the joys of some not too recent knits and how wonderful Kim Hargreaves and my Sockret Pal Gwen are. But stupid internet connection lost it all, so here is an annotated version…
First of all, hope you all had a lovely Christmas, and a better holiday than I’m having at the mo (with, amongst other things, a cold that refuses to go away). Here is how I feel after losing all my post and hacking my way through typing up a replacement…
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😀 Just kidding 😀 Actually, that’s how I felt after queuing at the post office to pick it up behind 30 other people, out the office and round the corner of the building… But it was worth it for the laugh it gave me when I opened it 😀
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A sheep that poos jellybeans 😀 Thanks Gwen 😀 I love it! Cheered me up no end!
Next up, the lovely Kim Hargreaves Soul hat:
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Yeah the photo is bad. Today it was dark at 2.45 when I left Sainsburys, so don’t expect good photo quality from me at all ever (well, till a few weeks down the road when we finally have some day). The kit is good, excellent value, especially in the sale, and the fit and the pattern work really well (please don’t judge the fit by the Kim photo – the model is wearing it more like a tam, while it works perfectly as a slouchy beret for me). The yarn is Kid Classic in Battle, but you can’t really see that too well in the pic. Sorry. Here is some detail.
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I’ve ordered another kit from Kim which hopefully will arrive soonish – a gorgeous cardi, purchased with my Christmas money 🙂 Yay!
Here is a pic of a work in progress too. My 50% completed Sweet Georgia Speed Demon sock in Honey Fig, a gorgeous range of purples with flashes of honey gold in there too. This yarn is way too nice to put in a patterned sock, so I just did a quick job of knitting it magic loop. I can’t wait for it to get a partner…
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Mmmmmmmmmmmmmm.
What else? oooooo! I ordered myself a Namaste knitting bag from my mum too! And I’ll probably order a swift too soon, but not till I’ve got my other goodies probably. I also got, knitting related, for Christmas, the Knitting to Go cards which are FAB, Elizabeth Zimmerman’s Knitting Almanac (my first taste of her writing, and I don’t think it will be the last – she’s ACE), and Stitchy McYarnpants’ little whimsy book, so yay!
Oh, and I bought a dress today from Monsoon that will probably be the wedding bash dress (I can’t put wedding dress as that sounds obviously incorrect!). I bought it full price too 🙁 Believe me, I tried to find a good dress on sale EVERYWHERE in town. No luck. I have 28 days to return it if I find anything cheaper/better in the new year sales, but given that I tried so many things on, and the fit was always wrong apart from on this one dress, I don’t hold out much hope. It is lovely though, and even though I tried to avoid it, it is black. But it has white flowers embroidered on it, and is a linen silk blend so drapes beautifully – something the lacy dresses I tried did not have (some, for how expensive they were, just looked like I’d been pinned into a sack and some lace off the market). And it is a little tight (although DB seemed to think it looked ok), but as predicted I have post Christmas gain so I think it should be a perfect fit for early Feb, and as it fits ish now, the pressure isn’t too great to lose too much. I might post a pic later, as I’m thinking of knitting a lace wrap to go with it, but I’m not sure what colour to make it in. I’ll think about it and order the yarn with the swift. But it would be very good to get your opinions on what kind of colour to choose for a February wedding, when white wouldn’t look good on me in winter, even with the white in the flowers, but off white might look silly against said flowers. I have that beautiful mouse brown cashmere cobweb from Posh Yarn – do you think that kind of colour would work for a winter wedding in the countryside? A flash of colour, but not too bright or washing for my skin tone? But there might not be enough to make a wrap sized wrap, just a scarf size. Anyway, I witter, but I know I’d have to start knitting soon to be finished for the 10th of Feb…
Ok I’ll shut up now. I wish you all a wonderful rest of holiday season. There will be more soon in a review of Colinette Jitterbug now the gift socks are done 🙂
[edited to add] Ooooh! What about making Cobweb from Rowan 40 in Kidsilk Haze? That could be instead of or as well as a lace wrap/scarf… It would mean spending money though again.

6 Strange things about me and some random thoughts.

Ugh, yet another cold (the second in 3 weeks, but a special different styled one – my boss has had exactly the same sequence of illness on the same days, so I suspect it is just a really nasty strain). That means even less gift knitting, and large quantities of easy eating (although today I successfully avoided toffees and choccy at work – yay! But consumed large quantities of throat sweets and blackcurrant medicine which is ok), and using all my time to shop for last minute stuff (done!) and try on pretty dresses in Monsoon in preparation for the wedding. Oops! But they have such beautiful dresses. I nearly bought one actually, but decided to refrain seeing as the size I thought I’d have to get now was actually a little big on the bust, which is a bloody miracle 😀 What a way to make me feel better 🙂 I’m hanging on, seeing as Monsoon always have beautiful clothes for occassions, and should still have some pretty things lurking at the end of next month, and as their dress sizes have given me hope. Did some wrapping tonight too, in preparation for some exchanges tomorrow at the last day of work.
The last day of work of the year is always good. We open at 8.45, and close at 12 midday! By the time we have opened up, cashed up, done all the daily jobs and wished everyone happy holidays, it is time to close up. Everyone who comes in is pretty much full of holiday cheer, even when they are stressed and rushing around to get stuff done with us while they can, and people sometimes want us to stay open all holiday. We won’t finish work on time, but that’s ok, as we will all go to the pub for lunch together, exchange gifts, and go home full and tipsy. Yay!
Ok, so I can read over DB’s shoulder that he is planning to tag me for this, but the lovely Modelwidow tagged me first, so she gets all the credit :p Lets see if I can think of 6… DB has far more interesting things to say in his ‘didn’t want to know about me list’. Maybe I’ll cheat and incorporate some (to all those librarians who get bounced here from my man – it’s legal as long as it is less than 5% ;D).
1) I am always always right. It’s a family trait. It doesn’t matter what it is, I AM right. And I thought of it first too. Therefore, I thought of this meme first, and even contemplated posting it and starting the chaing going looooong before Modelwidow tagged me, but decided it was all a bit too much like the other memes really. But clearly I am very innovative. And I am right.
2) DB is an ex-indie pop star. Kind of – the band can make a tasty sum as their vinyl goes for a nice price second hand 🙂 (that word count is less than 5%, and it isn’t an exact copy anyway. HA! See? Number one is so damn accurate and you know it). That makes me the Trudie Styler of the library world. What is particularly weird about this is that I truly believe it and use DB’s status in pub conversations frequently.
3) I won’t often look you in the eye – I’ll look all over the place in conversations and look like I’m not listening, but I am. That means that people often tell me secrets/think I’m not listening when they are spreading juicy gossip near me. Whether this is a good or a bad thing yet I’m not sure.
4) I imagine sometimes what would be the perfect soundtrack to what I’m doing according to my mood. Like walking to work in the dark, or coming down the stairs from the loo (the latter would involve the song Sir Digby Chicken Cesaer sings in That Mitchell and Webb Look 9 times out of 10).
5) The 10th time from above would be to Head over Heels by Tears for Fears (a la Donnie Darko).
6) I like to watch a full sequence of series of my fave TV shows. For example, I can happily watch the entire run of Friends over a couple of weeks while getting some knitting done (it was also my fave background noise for studying for 3 years – I have to have background noise while studying).
And if I could have a 7th, to make it lucky, I would point out that I heart the Simpsons far more than is healthy, and would like to think that I’m like Lisa, but really I’m just a combo of Ralph and Gill. And maybe Mr Pinchy. But I sadly never got the opportunity to attend lobster academy. And I’ve never been cooked.
Tomorrow afternoon there will be a finished object. Long finished, but I figure I should have some knitting content seeing as I haven’t had much to show with it being secret/semi-secret for gifts. If I remember I’ll ask Cherry to take pics of her socks tomorrow. Or, if her hubby is reading (yes, she told me 😀 *wave*), he might ask her. And he might like to know that there is such a thing in Japan as Hello Kitty toilet paper.
Next week, more stupid facts about me and my shite sense of humour.

Trying to get my head sorted

Ok, so this is one of those self-motivational posts. The scarf I needed to make for tomorrow is almost done, but will need a press under a damp cloth to make it presentable. I have some cards to write, but lets face it, they won’t get done till tomorrow night seeing as last post for first class is Tuesday 😉 I got my Christmas pressie today from DB’s parents – a subscription to Craft magazine 😀
So I need to get things done. BUT, I also have to remind myself in between all these things that I have to watch what I eat for both my intolerances and to lose weight for February the 10th. That’s when Sue gets married 😀 I’d like to buy nice things in the sales after New Year. I don’t mind paying full price though if it means it is a size smaller than early January would get me 😉 I feel pogged right now, but the only naughty thing I’ve had is dry roasted peanuts and a really small slice of wheat free (and, may I add, almost fat free) ginger cake, so that makes the peanuts the worst thing. Everything else was pretty good. And for those people who have food intolerance issues, J B Bussink stem ginger loaf is the most moist and tasty wheat free cake I’ve ever had – a really good sub for Christmas cake may I add, and only 2 ww points for a big slice for those interested. And DB and his parents liked it, and they know cake well. I have yet another Christmas do tomorrow at work, so hopefully that won’t be to indulgent (you know, it being work, and therefore not really the same as going to a fancy restaurant). Ugh. Well, there will be about 7 weeks after new year before the wedding, which is quite a long time if I’m really good. Hahahahah!
You see? I can motivate myself to complete a degree while working, therefore I can motivate myself to lose weight and be good and everything, especially given scary photo opportunities… Now, that is motivational. 😉

An Aside

Jax tagged me for a blog party 😀
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Here I am, damp and shabby after being caught in the rain, with added fun from the evil mobile phone camera 😉 I was just checking my blog after a looooong day at work and our Christmas meal (at Lounge 68 in Huddersfield for those who fancy one – just delicious!), feeling sleepy, and considering bed. I may have been slow at responding to the invite, but blimey, you are soooo lucky that I saved that photo Jax ;D
So now I have to tag some people to participate 😀 Sooooo, I invite Leah, Necia, Aileen (if she has time, bless her. Go give her a cyberhug), and the lovely Brenda who has only just entered the world of blogging, but trust me, she knits good. Ok girlies – if you participate, take a pic as soon as you’ve read this ‘ere post and tell us all what you were doing at the time.
Oh, and gift knitting is totally taking over my time outside of work. I have so much to do! Gah! And an extra gift to knit! But I have got a little further in all of them. That means that no knitting AT ALL has gone on for yours truly. Bugger. But the general concensus about the cardi/jumper issue is definitely moving in the jumper direction. What is worse is that in the meantime I had cast on for Rowan Chrissie… Whoops! But as I say other than that, nothing pour moi.
Time to knit more for my mates…

A dilemma

Two posts in as many days? Good grief!  Please note that if you experienced any problems with the blog recently, our hosts moved the site to a different server without telling us, so there may be some missing comments and funnies…  Many apologies!
But anyway, I need help. And don’t say you already knew that…
This week we had a delivery of new stock at work, and a wonderful fellow knitter colleague (who sadly isn’t adventurous enough to undertake much of the patterns in the book) brought me the gift of a request on Knitting Nature :D I had this on my Amazon wishlist, but now I’ve taken it off – too many mad things and duds in the book. However, there are a couple of things that have caught my eye, and I figured I’d take advantage of the long Christmas loan period to see if I can knock out a nice garment from it. Now, I can’t justify purchasing any more yarn right now, and I have a big pile of lovely Knit Picks Andean Silk which I think could work really well as the simply delicious Rams Horn Jacket (one already made is here, and I think it looks lovely on her). It is either, if a swatch works out, this or the original purpose of the Glampyre Simple Knitted Bodice pattern at Stitch Diva. I actually hate to say it but I think the jacket would be more useful… Let me know what you think while I think about swatching.

Show and Tell

We don’t have show and tell in the UK, or at least we didn’t when I was at school many moons ago, but here is some hot knitting show action, plus all the other things I haven’t posted piccies of recently 🙂

Oh, before I forget – DB posted a comment with a link to the photos from Rome in Flickr, so go looksie 😀 For those who can’t be arsed, they can be found here:

Rome pics

Not many pics of us – DB seems to hate putting pics with him in, and the only two with me alone are hideous cos I was knackered on Monday morning and looked rough 😀

Anyway, we had a fabby fabby time at the Knitting Show last week, and I made the following purchases:

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3 hanks of Knitshop silk merino blend. I say this again and again, but I am damn choosy about how comfortable my yarn is. There is no point paying good money for yarn that is not nice to the touch. Price is sometimes considered (i.e. I will not make a sweater out of this, or out of anything that costs more than I’d pay for in the shops for something I really loved – usually about 50 quid if I’m feeling flush, more if I save up for something special). But this really is soft and gorgeous – it passes the cheek test with flying colours, and makes me want to roll in it. Cross your fingers for me in the hope that it breeds while I finish knitting my Christmas gifts (yeah, I don’t have long blah blah blah, but I am being selective about who gets them). *sigh* I’m such a yarn whore.

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Next up some yarn I’ve wanted for a while. UK Alpaca were there, and I’d actually gone with plans to buy their alpaca silk blend, but found this and fell in love over it. This is their baby alpaca merino blend and is softer than the alpaca silk, which I never thought possible. It is destined for mittens with a snowflake motif I think. Oooooooooh baby I can’t wait to get my needles into it.

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At the same stand I bought some good value alpaca and blue faced leicester fibre to spin up. I’ve been practicing with merino and doing a bit of a poor job (although I haven’t tried since I came back from my hols). I wanted to use my fibre to play with before I spun up my Sockret Pal Gwen’s gift fibre so that I didn’t ruin it or anything – I’m so not ready to spin to knit yet. BUT, I read somewhere that merino can be really tough to spin up. This stuff is about the same price as the merino – it cost 2.50 per 100g as opposed to Texere yarns’ £1.50 per 50g and it feels gorgeous. I won’t be too afraid to spin it up this way, and I’ve got plenty to play with, and can order online if I want more. And I love this wintery tweedy grey. I’m hoping that I’ll get good enough to send some to my sockret pal (so don’t say anything to her ;D), even if it is just a tiny amount. I’ll be having some spin time tomorrow hopefully, now I have no nasty interview stuff to interrupt my crafting 😉

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Here is some stuff I’ve had for a while, but have never had time to post pics. First up, the wonderful Socks That Rock 😀 I have so needed to buy this and ordered it long before I finished my coursework so that I’d have something lovely to look at. Ooooh boy. I ordered a hank of lightweight Jasper, and midweight Highway 30. Both are delicious and I want to play with them. I also have a hank of Sweet Georgia, but the colourway escapes me for now. I’ll save it for when I feel like a quick knit, but it might work well with a couple of sportweight patterns I have. And the other?

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Piece of Beauty Robe and Bowl. I may have already posted pics of this. I don’t care. It is lush. Know how I said I could roll around in my yarn? Maybe I could if I piled all this up… Hoorah!

I’ve also invested in some of the new Colinette sock yarn, Jitterbug. A hank is for my sockret pal (so shhh!), and a hank is for some gift knitting. I’ll let you know how it goes, but winding it up and the looking at the colours so far, I’m quite pleased. We’ll see how it is once knitted up… 🙂

Ciao baby!