13 September 2007

Crochet? What's crochet?

I decided to buy some 4 ply Jaeger cotton earlier in the year - the colour was just gorgeous (a sort of dark bluebell/hyacinth blue which they call "lobelia"). And Kangaroo were having a sale so I couldn't resist, could I????

Anyway, the pattern is another Rowan one, from the same book as the kidsilk haze wrap and the white beaded cardigan (boy, am I getting my money's worth from that book!). I was fine on the knitting bit but was a bit fazed by the crochet instructions having only done a bit of very basic crocheting as a child. Thankfully, I have the Batsford book of crochet and by following it step by step, managed to do the crochet edging. I'm pretty pleased by the way it has come out. The pattern calls for wooden beads on the safety pin but I decided to go for something a bit shinier and a mother of pearl bead at the end which picks up the blue in the yarn.

Turbulence pullover

I was wandering round the internet as I do, looking at other people's blogsites on knitting, and came across someone who was raving about Nora Gaughan's Knitting Nature. I googled and came up with a peek inside the book and fell in love. I decided on the Turbulence Pullover - I have a stash of DK wool that has been in my cupboard for literally years. I am a strong, blue-based colours girl, being a winter, and thought the emerald green of this Jaeger Matchmaker alpaca DK would go well. Start to finish in under 2 weeks. 1 more project down, lots more to go.

Yarnplay jumper

I have been busy this summer. We had two weeks in Cornwall at the end of the summer holidays - a bit wild and wet at times - and so I knitted a lot. Here's the end result. It's taken from Lisa Siobhan Mason's Yarnplay. She suggests using Noro Silk Garden and Cash Iroha as the combination of yarns but I had a lot of Kureyon to use up. It's not as silky as Silk Garden and it has more colours in its variegation than Silk Garden but I like the colours in this a lot. I think it was Noro Kureyon #139. The photo doesn't really do justice to the amazing colours. It is really quite beautiful. I haven't worn it yet as it has been a bit too warm since we returned home (typical!).

16 July 2007

The Rowan kidsilk haze tie wrap

After I finished the cotton beaded cardigan, I went for something entirely different. I bought some Rowan kidsilk haze at Christmas when Kangaroo.co.uk were having a sale. It's a beautiful pale blue colour and the lightest of yarns imaginable. A complete contrast to the heavy weight cotton and beading of my last project. In the same Rowan book as the last cardigan, I found a pattern for a tie front wrap cardigan in kidsilk haze and decided to knit this for those days when a heavy cardigan won't do but you can't quite do without something over a dress or camisole. And the end result is lovely. It fits perfectly. The pictures really do not do it justice at all but never mind.

The finished lacy, beaded cardigan

Here is the finished article, some time after the fact. So late after the fact that I have actually finished another cardigan and am part way through a third...

So, here is the (pre-blocking) finished Rowan handknit cotton and bead cardigan. It weighs a ton but the weight gives it a great swing. I really like it.

Race for Life 11 July 2007

Yes, I did it. I ran the Race for Life in Crawley on 11 July 2007, finishing the 5km hilly course in 28 minutes which was a personal best. I never thought I'd see the day but, having lost nearly 5 stone at the end of last year, I was in the best shape ever to start training and to run the event. It was a great atmosphere and it was also great to run it with my friend, Anna, who encouraged me all the way round. And the other great thing? I raised £400 for Cancer Relief UK.

I'm the one on the far left in black, about 5 metres from the finish line.

17 May 2007

A summer knit project

It's been so hard to decide what to do next, now that Mermaid is finished. I love Mermaid but it is soon not going to be the weather to wear it (she says hopefully, looking at the rain!) I have a couple of other Hanne Falkenberg projects waiting in my stash but think they might be better left until Autumn.

I finally decided on a Rowan cotton funky, lacy cardigan (it's in the tribal section of their last summer collection) with wooden beads woven into the yoke part of the cardigan. It's an ecru colour in the photo but I look ill in ecru so I chose white instead. I have had to go with the natural wood beads they used for theirs - the whole bead thing has been a saga. I was so unsure of whether they'd look OK that I tried two other kinds of beads first - one a silver glass one and the other a sort of pearl. Both would have looked good but the yarn is simply too thick to go through the hole so back to square one (and about £15 worse off). Whilst waiting for the right beads, I have knitted the back and both fronts as far as the yoke which is where the beads come in. Now that the beads have arrived (and do actually fit onto the yarn - miracles do happen!) I have started knitting the yoke of the back. I've done about 12 or 13 rows of the yoke (the beads come every 4 rows) and I have to say it is looking pretty good. I think I would have preferred a lighter shade of bead but natural was the lightest they did. Hey, I am sure I will enjoy wearing it when I finish it.

And after all that garter stitch and 2 ply wool, it's a bid strange knitting in DK cotton in a lace pattern with beads. But we knitters love to be flexible, don't we?

17 April 2007

I've gone Hanne mad. Yes, I know it's addictive. Once you've been bitten, it's very hard to resist. I've already got a promenade kit stashed away in my wardrobe and now I've been given some money for my birthday (not telling you how old...) The money was burning a hole in my pocket and as I was googling away I came across the HF website. I couldn't resist the new design, Ping Pong, which is the tailored jacket with bobbles on. I've gone for the azure and turquoise mix (it's Ping Pong colourway 8) - a complete contrast to my Mermaid 8. It's got a week's delay on it while the supplier gets it in stock so I'll post some pictures of the kit once it arrives.

I'm hoping her pattern isn't too mind bending. May have to embark on a spreadsheet (thanks to Amy I'm now spoiled. I can't contemplate embarking on a HF project without one!) which I will share with anyone who wants it. Watch this space...

Meanwhile, Mermaid is coming along nicely. I have done 3/4 of the first sleeve and so far, the length seems about right. Long may it continue, judging by some of the posts on the HF knitalong. I hope to have completed it by the end of the month. Will probably give myself a break from HF over the summer and knit something cotton or lighterweight and return to HF in September. Don't want to get too much of a good thing, now do I?

9 April 2007

Mermaid 8

Here's a photo of my part-completed Mermaid in colourway 8 - cyclamen, brick red and thunder blue. I don't think the photos do the colours justice. They are gorgeous! As you can see, I have nearly finished the body. Just need to do the sleeves and the i-cords. I have opted for Amy's idea of a temporary cast on which I will undo in order to make the two i-cords match. I'll be saving that for a day when it isn't school holidays and I can have some peace and quiet!!!

30 March 2007


I just love Hanne Falkenberg. She is such a cool designer. She thinks of everything down to the last detail. What you start off thinking is just a pain to do is actually very clever and will make the finished garment look amazing. I'm part way through Mermaid 8 (cyclamen, brick red and thunder blue) and it's looking great. I promise I'll put pictures on soon. Amy at needlesandhooks has put together a really neat spreadsheet which makes the whole thing straightfoward enough to do in the company of my nearly 4 year old and my 6 year old. I can actually stop mid row and have a conversation and not lose my place. Miracles do happen!! I'm so excited about Mermaid that I have already bought the materials for a second one in natural white, aqua and a dark jade green (for the gussets). Can't wait to do that one as well. One thing at once...