Another Sunday

Well, I feel I ought to inform you why I’ve not been blogging as much still. You already know about how busy I’ve been. Well here is what has been making me so busy. Still clearly a loooong time from being finished, but you might be able to appreciate the complexities of my current work…
Also, here is a pic of a purse I got yesterday from Afflecks Palace in Manchester (made by Disaster Design). I love Afflecks, but everytime I go, I feel just that little bit too old to be there – mainly if I’m still in my ‘I’m with normal friends’ clothes. Still wish I could dress a bit more outrageously but I so can’t carry it off anymore, but my hair makes up for it a bit 🙂 Also, I clearly still have the mind of a child stuck up there in the 31 year old body, but I doubt that will ever go away, and I hope it never does 😀 Where would the joy be if everything was all grown up and about bills and work? And also, much of what Afflecks sells is still much older than me, which is very helpful indeed.
Lastly, the new series of Lost has started on Sky, and I’m so frigging excited I have ants in my pants and can’t quite keep still 😀 And on top of that the fantastic tennis between Nadal and Fed… Weee!

Joyful liberation

I’ve been a bad blogger. I haven’t blogged in over a month, but I don’t think I’m alone – lots of stuff to do for Christmas, a dodgy battery in the laptop (which means if I don’t plug it in I have about an hour of power), and then free time became a blur. My post title says it all – I only have one knit for someone else on the needles, which is liberating in itself, but I’ve also really enjoyed a blog break. Don’t hate me for it, but I needed a holiday, and I’m still lacking blogging mojo too a little. Maybe blogging will help that, plus Abigail is nagging me ;D My knitting is slowing down a bit again too now – I got a bit over excited at having time and energy, knitted too much, and have made my trapped nerve flair up a bit, but at least now I know how to curb it, and aid it, and pilates class starts up again this week after a 2 week break (where I didn’t go to class for 3 weeks before Christmas with all the stuff I had to do!)
So what have I been up to? I’m afraid there aren’t really any photos of stuff I’ve made, and I’ve been shopping lots and not photographing that either. Having said that, have a gander at all this lot…
Listy stuff
I have made:
1 plush rat
1 plush cat
2 baby cardis
baby booties
baby sandals
and messed up 2 skirts
All in the past month! See?! I have been very busy 😉
Photo things
Here are some pics of things I have purchased, because the world needs eye candy
socktopus club Dec 08
knitshop merino silk silver
Lang Zoom
fabric stash from Harrogate 08
Also, I have more to show you, but I’m keeping it back for now until there is more of it. And I’ve had a haircut, and have gone a bit Louise Brooks (but a bit more modern). Maybe if you are lucky you’ll get a peek at them both soon.
So how are you all? More prolific than I have been most likely. And many of you won’t have to try and blog with a cat flopping down on you/the keyboard…

Production line

Thanks to you all for your feedback on the site view, and also for your lovely comments in general! I’m afraid I’ve been really strapped for time recently 🙁 so haven’t been able to respond to everyone. I’m starting to lose the habit, so I’m really sorry 🙁 BUT…
DB and I made it to and from Poland for a wedding the other weekend, and given that Poland is a bit chilly sometimes I figured I would need mittens and a hat. And here they are! The mitts were finished a few days before the trip, the hat the day before so I just scraped in 😀
mitts outer side
mitts inner side
hat on
hat close up
The mittens are knitted from the Hello Yarn generic pattern, based on patterns from The Complete Book of Traditional Scandinavian Knitting by Sheila McGregor (I love working in a library :D). It was strange – the mitts seemed to zoom along, so I wondered whether it was because I’d put together the design myself rather than using one someone else did. Ok so I didn’t design it myself from scratch, but I made the decisions, I made the chart and marked it all up, so I was pretty aware of what I was doing before I cast on. Either way I’m happy – they were quick and fun and blocked out pretty well, and as they are alpaca (UK Alpaca Baby Alpaca), they are warm and toasty 😀
The hat is the same yarn and is the hat pattern from Wendy Bernard’s Custom Knits. It is supposed to be a beret, which it is clearly not, so kudos for me on not swatching! The pattern said it was very slouchy so to make it less slouchy, miss a repeat out, which I did, but in spite of messing up it is still very wearable. I was a bit worried that even with the repeat being cut, I’d run out of yarn (I had 2 50g skeins of the cream, one of the blue), but I still have enough left over to make another hat, albeit probably child sized. Yum 🙂
Next up? Baby cardis a go go (not for me or progeny of me I should add!) and also a kusha kusha scarf to go with the mitts and hat 🙂 What else kept me busy? Going to see Ladytron at the Cockpit and getting nearly deafened and vibrated to death by the craptastic sound system (but a fun gig nonetheless :D). Woot!

Back again!

Thanks for all your lovely comments on my last post! I’m finding it quite liberating not blogging all the time about nothing in particular 😉 I’ve been rather busy in my absence. I got a last minute ticket to see the Mighty Boosh at Lawrence Batley Theatre 😀 Naturally since then I’ve been obsessing over Howard and his proud legs.
But more to the point, I’ve been knitting…
Gina received her gift knit (remember our planned exchange? I get her leftover yarn from the butterfly jacket and a pair of socks, she gets something knitted by me). I can post a VERY bad photo of it now!
shawl for gina 2
The colour isn’t accurate, despite all the tweaking in Photoshop I did :S Also I took a full length shot outside, and it looked like it was glowing! It’s the Seascape Stole by Kieran Foley (from Knitty summer 08). It was pretty easy, although I couldn’t have knit it without the chart in front of me. The yarn is Piece of Beauty Laceweight Silk in Ocean Minerals, so go look at the site and see the real colours with the blues and greys and greens and silvers.
Also, I made some socks 🙂
finished mystery sock 1
These are the mystery socks for Sept 08 at Sock Knitters Anonymous. I [heart] them. Jeannie is a very talented designer 😀 The yarn is Posh Yarn Marguerite in Squeal (a silk/merino blend, but sturdier than most of this kind of blend, and well plied – shame they’ve stopped doing this one 🙁 I’d use it again in a flash, but more as a summer yarn).
Lastly, I’ve been sewing, but I have nothing to show yet as the thread was against me finishing anything 🙁 First it wouldn’t thread in the machine properly. Not just once, but 4 times. 4 times! Then the bobbin kept getting caught up. Then the thread ran out halfway through finishing the edges off, so after half an hour, I still have a load of fabric to finish, and no sewing done :/
One last word – I think I need to fix my layouts/photo sizes. I can see my sidebar exactly there – on the side, but at work I discovered it at the bottom of the posts. How many of you can see it where it should be? And are you bothered if it’s wrong?!

A long time coming

Sorry, but I’ve been quite busy doing secret things 🙂 I know it’s boring to read about, but you’ll find out about them soon enough…
In the meantime, here is some eyecandy. Last weekend I went to the local art gallery to see an exhibition. A knitting exhibition to be precise 😀 I got to see 30 Years of Rowan 😀 Woot! It was small but perfectly formed – two rooms of stunning quilts and knitwear from the entire back-catalogue of Rowan’s magazines and books. It was predominantly mad 80s looking colourwork rather than what you would call wearable, but from technical point, it was amazing. Here are some highlights:
capsule 07
Yummy, eh? I had a whale of a time, and also could have spent a small fortune on many many packs of special edition 30yr postcards and pattern books, but they only took cash and (probably luckily) my cheque book was at home.
I’ve been knitting a little, but I’ve been pretty busy with life stuff (all good I should point out :D), so the most I’ve been doing is knitting for the new year of the Sockdown on Ravelry. This month’s theme is orange, or Cookie A, or a mystery sock in orange. I love that the Sockdown gives me a chance to use up stash that I may not have picked out for ages because of my hoarding tendancies, so I’ve been knitting with some Posh Yarn Margueritte I bought ages ago and working on the mystery sock 🙂 Here is more eye candy.

I’ve also been planning some future knitting – the weather is turning colder in the morning when I’m waiting for the bus, so once these socks are done, I’ll be knitting up some colourwork mittens from the stash. I have plenty of yarn I bought for that kind of thing, so I’m debating between 2 colour and 3 colour patterns. 3 colour ones will be in a silk/merino blend in pink, purple and lavendar, 2 colour in baby alpaca in cream and eggshell blue. You’ll see more of that when I’ve swatched, but pattern suggestions are always welcome 😀 I’m currently leaning towards some edelweiss mittens, but that may change.
So how you doing? Hope your knitting time is greater than mine…

Arte Y Pico

Ruth at Roobeedoo nominated me for an award!

Rules of Arte Y Pico
1) You have to pick 5 blogs that you consider deserve this award, creativity, design, interesting material, and also contributes to the blogger community, no matter of language.
2) Each award has to have the name of the author and also a link to his or her blog to be visited by everyone.
3) Each award-winning, has to show the award and put the name and link to the blog that has given her or him the award itself.
4) Award-winning and the one who has given the prize have to show the link of “Arte y pico” blog , so everyone will know the origin of this award.
5) To show these rules.
Passing on the award, I nominate (in no particular order):
BlueADT Knits: apart from having a TON of gorgeous animals, she always has fantastic photography of her projects and purchases, and is generally wonderful 🙂
Yarn Miracle: Emily was my downward swap partner for Sockapalooooza, and was so understanding of my health problems when I was trying to get her socks made. She’s a wonderful person, with a gorgeous little baby girl, and does some amazing organisation of the Dish Rag Tag scheme. And she knits too! She clearly is better at organising herself than I am 🙂 Go see her.
Octopus Knits: apart from the cat content, which never fails to amuse me/strike fear into me for the safety of the lace, there is currently perhaps the most gorgeous Malabrigo lace yarn shade ever on there. But she always has beautiful lace knitting anyway 🙂
Posh Yarns: you won’t find much better photography or crafting than at Rebecca’s site. She’s an amazing seamstress, and knits beautifully, to the point where I feel like I’m reading an aspirational magazine (but much better because it is real life)!
Finally, Knit Two Together: Gina rocks. No two ways about it. But Gina rocks more after her stint as a racing car driver 😀 She knits and she drives! But can she do both at the same time? Probably not but who cares ;D
And I’d like to give an extra mention to Abigail at 1870pearl as she’s such a wonderful person, and always has something positive to say. I know I should only nominate 5, but I couldn’t resist pulling Abigail in 😉 Hope Ruth won’t withdraw my award 😉
There are too many cool bloggers out there. Go find them.
I ought to add some knitting news too. Still nothing that isn’t secret to show I’m afraid 🙁 But on Saturday I went to the Guild open day again 😀 Naturally I bought stuff. I got a ton of All Seasons Cotton to make Hermia (I’m still debating about the length I should make for her, but I’ll probably go full length), and Cat Bordhi’s New Pathways book. We also got to finally go to the talk with all the antique knits. I’d already rejected a book about knitting Latvian mittens as it recommended a gauge of 10 sts an inch on 1.5-2mm needles, and I can’t even get 9 sts on 2mm 🙁 But when I saw things that had been hand made to a gauge of 15 sts per inch, I was in awe. If you can make it to the guild, but have never been to the talk – go. It’s fab, and it doesn’t cost any extra. And then we went to the beer festival at the Nook and drank some beer and some perry 🙂 And danced in our seats, and played pool. It was good 😀

Raoked :D (and also some Plurking)

Weee! I got Raoked 😀 Twice! I’m a lucky girl 🙂
First up, some gorgeous stitchmarkers from Kristina:
RAOK markers
Aren’t they beautiful?! I love the little heart ones in particular, but they are all gorgeous. They are sitting on a 2.5mm needle, so you can see they are perfect for sock and lace knitting, as they won’t get in the way or get stuck in the knitting 😀 Thanks Kristina 😀
And as if that wasn’t enough, I got these too:
RAOK needles
from Christine 😀 She doesn’t do sock knitting on dpns very much now, so she sent me hers 😀 I’m quite excited by the Crystal Palace ones as I didn’t have any 2.75mm ones and I’ve never used Crystal Palace ones before. Weee! Thanks Christine 😀
And hey! there will be another blog post veeery soon, because I have some spinning to show you, and I might just drop a hint to Gina about her gift knit… Teehee! Plus I have been given an award, and after much umming and ahhing I’ve picked out some blogs to award it to. Who knows, it might just be you on the list… 😀
Finally, before I forget, Abigail invited me to Plurk, so if you are on there, come find me 😀 My Plurk box is in the side bar (or if you don’t have as high a resolution as me, it might be waaaaaaaaaaaaaaay down at the bottom of the blog). You know you want to.

A productive weekend

Oooooh have I got some photos for you!
Saturday was a fantastic day – the weather was stunning, which was rather pleasing, as I’d arranged to go to the Knitting and Crochet Guild open day with a couple of friends. They had never been before, and one is relatively new to knitting, so it was a cool experience to see it from a new visitor’s view again 😀 And we all purchased 😀 And then we went to Up Country, and 2 thirds of us purchased again! Weeee!

Huuuuuge cone of teal laceweight
Huuuuuge cone of teal laceweight

More laceweight el-cheapo yarn
More laceweight el-cheapo yarn

Pure wool lace yarn
Pure wool lace yarn


Here we have:
one hank of Manos del Uruguay Silk Blend yum yum yum yum
one cone of black 100% new wool lace-ish weight yarn
one cone red misc content yarn, lace-ish
one MASSIVE cone of teal lace-ish misc content yarn
Opal bamboo 2.5mm dpns
Japanese stitch markers, both clip on ones and needle ones
And most of these were bargainous 😀 The Manos, suffice to say, was not cheap, but was special and will go to the fanciest st st socks ever. But the cones? They were all £1 each. £1! A quid! The teal I’ll use to make the new Knitty surprise sweater (Sea Tangle), because for a quid I don’t mind forgoing the steel and firmness of the sweater at all 😀 I’m looking for process and the beauty of the knit rather than something that exactly matches the pics, because when does that ever happen? Not often. And for those guys in the US, £1 is $2… See my point? I’m going to be knitting a LOT of lace in the future 😀
Also, I bought Rowan Studio 11 and some secret birthday gift stuff for a certain someone… I’ve already got something in my queue from Studio 11 – the textured vest, probably in that long stashed brown Rowan Wool Cotton that has been promised to a million other projects…
Oh, and I made these:

Louisa's gift
Louisa's gift

The socks are the June issue of the Socktopus club kit, and I loooooooooove them. The yarn is Dream in Color Smooshy, which is ace to work with :D, and the pattern is by Alice (the Socktopus owner) herself 😀 Sooooo quick too! Only 2 weeks to work up 😀 It has been a long time since I’ve been able to knit so fast, but this pattern lends itself to fast knitting.
And the scarf? Nothing complicated, but very pretty and effective 🙂 Another gift knit done with – woohoo!

I hope absence makes the heart grow fonder…

Especially when I show you all the goodies I have produced in my absence 😀
Well, first up, and perhaps finally too, I have at last got pictures of skirt number two. Apologies for the picture quality on these. I had to take pics in the bathroom as the weekend weather has been rubbish for weeks and I can’t get any outside of me wearing them 🙁 Sorry! Also they were ironed but one has been worn and one has been in the wardrobe, which for some reason has creased it to infinity…
The fabric is Free Spirit’s Sole range, with the beautifully named D1693. Ahhh, that name just inspires thoughts of fighter jets and aircraft carriers ahoy… 😉 But I do really like the big dandilion type print. I didn’t put any ease into the waist in this one, but forgot to drop the ease in the hips, so it is VERY a line, but I like it for that.
And then…
The fabric for this is Echino Perch. It is a bit heavy for a skirt but I just needed to do it 🙂 And It hangs beautifully thanks to the weight. I did start a cord skirt, but after sewing up the two skirt pieces I found what may be bleach or may be dye transfer… Fingers crossed it is just dye transfer! I love the colour and the way the skirt looked after sewing 🙁
I’m about to start the next Socktopus sock club kit as I finished my gift socks today 😀 so I’ll post again with pics of that soon (I promise!)… I’ve calculated that I could probably finish my gift scarf in a week if I work at it instead of doing a row here and there. But I can’t show you the gift socks till they’ve been received. If you are on Ravelry, go have a look at my profile and you’ll find them under Chalet Socks 🙂 Would you believe that I have so much gift knitting now that I have set up a schedule for when I want to start each item by and a rough estimate of how long I want to take on them? Anyway, I can show you these (with a little hint of the gift socks so Sue, turn away now!)
I kept the grown up socks in for perspective (they are about a UK size 4). My friend gave birth by c-section at 32 weeks and 4 days last week, after being quite ill, so her little baby is just that – teeny tiny little. I’m hoping to send her the gifty socks along with the baby things so that she can have something for herself and something for the baby. I spent much of the week before the birth, and the weekend after it worrying about her and the baby, hence no post last week. So after all this, I hope it makes up for my absence a bit 🙂
Hopefully my next post will be much sooner, with better quality pictures and more finished knitting…
UPDATE: Screw the gift scarf. I messed it up 🙁 I couldn’t unknit because the yarn is too fine and lace is lace and I didn’t have a life line. Poop 🙁 I’ll try something else as a gift for its recipient instead 🙁