Sunday, January 24, 2010

Finishing a couple little projects

I'm feeling very proud of myself these days. I'm finishing projects rather then simply starting more.

These are my fingerless mitts. A pattern by Danielle Kessner called Veritas, Equatas (rav-link). I love them and happen to be wearing them as I type this. :) Tapestry crochet is very enjoyable and not as daunting as it may look. This won't be my last project that's for certain. Danielle has another pattern called Cloister that I love and think will be my next project.

The Gymnast is on a sock monkey kick and asked if I could make her a hat. Needless to say she LOVES it! Luckily I got this picture of it when I finished it because it hasn't left her head since. Now the Fey-Goth wants to have one as well. So I'm going to pick up a ball of gray today and make another one. The pattern is supa easy and it's done out of bulky so they whip up really quick.

So much for not starting any more projects...

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Teddies for Tragedies

The news is full of heartache and terror in Haiti these days. When the immediate need of medical, food, water and shelter has been answered then the healing can begin.
If you are not aware of Teddies for Tragedies then please follow the link. It only takes an evening to knit one of these little bears.
I have been trying to find a knitting charity for this year. "A little charity knitting is good for the soul,"my mother used to say.
Previously I knit the Pneumonia Prevention Vests. The side bar link, under "Free Patterns," will take you to the pattern on this blog. This post receives the most hits on our blog and I hope many vests have been donated as a result.

Back to the Teddies. The web site link will take you to the pattern page. They are very simple to knit as they are primarily garter stitch. For the following bear I used 2 strands of 4 ply Shetland wool, left over from Michael's Heritage Vest and a 3.75mm Addi needle. The knitting needs to be dense so the stuffing won't show. The following is a pictorial representation of the written instructions.:

Knit two legs separately
Knit across the tops of both legs and continue for the top of the pants.
Change to the colours of your choice and knit the body.
Back to the teddy colour and in Stocking stitch knit the head (I knit 18 rows)
Now reverse the process and knit the "back."
Fold in half and Sew up the side seams of the head and pick up the sleeve stitches. Knit the arms.
Stitch across the "corners" of the head for the ears. these will not be stuffed.
Now, knit the other arm. sew up the seams leaving an opening for stuffing. The directions suggest leaving an opening at the inner leg. I find the outer leg seam easier to sew up after stuffing. Embroider the face and you are done.
I will post a picture of the finished guy as soon as I can get out to get some poly stuffing. Great ways to use up left over sock yarn!!
If you are in the London, St Thomas area of Ontario, the bears can be dropped off at Little Red Mitten.

Monday, January 11, 2010

The world's most awesome mug!

Mum and I both got one of these mugs from Matt & Sophia. Aren't they the sweetest. It saves a lot of time and energy. Instead of trying to explain that you are in the middle of a difficult pattern or counting rows you can simply lift your mug and the intruder gets the hint. LOL
If you would like you own here's the link.
This picture is a bit of a twofer. One, it shows off my uber-awesome mug. Two, it shows my newest project. I'm on a crochet kick right now after taking the Jacquard (tapestry) crochet class last weekend.

When I finished my thummed cowl (picture below), I had yarn left over so I'm tackling another of Danielle Kassner's Patterns. A pair of fingerless mitts called Veritas, Equatas (rav-link). After working on the cowl where I was balancing 2 strands of yarn and pencil roving, this glove is almost easy. LOL Also I've been able to use up some left over fingering from a couple old projects.

I'm very happy with the way my cowl turned out. It's really warm as well, perfect since the temperature here has taken a nasty downwards turn again.

~Daughter #1

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Guaranteed Knitting Time

Things have been very sad here in Nantyglo. We have not had a good start to year 2010. My wonderful Mother and adored Granny Ann has passed from this world.
She used to say that her "Mam" used to say, "These things are sent to try us." Well, I have been well and truly "tried" over the last 8 days. Enough that the emotional me got beat up now the physical is hurting as well. If I heard once I heard 50 times, from her friends, "Oh your the knitter." She wore every sweater I knit her with pride and she told everyone where it came from. I was the luckiest daughter in the world to have her.
Friday evening I had a nasty fall in the side hall. It is a miracle I didn't fall down the basement stairs. Turns out it is not broken but badly sprained. Too bad really a brake heals in a given time a sprain lingers on and on....crap.
Once you have one of these (above) no one expects you to do anything other than knit.
My mother always said, " There is a silver lining to every cloud." I find knitting soothes my mind and my body.

Doncha love my jammies? My grand daughters picked them out for me because and I quote," I am the funnest Grami."

So this is the "Lovely Sophia Sweater" finally on the needles and progressing nicely. Zara is like knitting with butter. Soft Mmm I love it. I have one complaint. Get with the program people ...50 gm balls??? I mean come on. I would like to petition for a 200 gm ball.
I am just about at the end of the first ball. Do you know how many ends that is going to be?
Above the knitting you will see the new toy I got from my friend Sandy. It is by Clover and is the greatest counter I have ever had. I took a few moments at Christmas and made my self a snazzy cord so it hangs around my neck and the numbers face up toward me. Wonderful I love it. (I know it is lime green, but no, Corinne you can't have it).

In the "Welshwomen Who came Before" I give you the following picture, which my brother came across in my mothers papers.

The little girl is my grandmother's sister Mary Ann, on her right is Granny Jones, (you can't be welsh unless you have a Granny Jones, lol), on her left is her grandmother Sarah Rosser and behind her is her mother Hannah Hale. Four generations before my mother. Just a bit of trivia I thought I would share.

Monday, January 4, 2010

How to spend a snowy Sunday afternoon

I signed up for a class at my LYS, Spun Fibre Arts . I was really looking forward to learning something new. After loosing my Gran on Saturday, to be honest, I wasn't feeling particularly social. My plans for the day revolved around sitting in the corner of the couch and crying into a cup of tea. BUT Gran was a practical person and she would have been the first to kick my ass for ditching a class I had paid for. After much deliberation, I decided to go after all. I'm glad I did it was a lot of fun. I met people I only knew through name on Ravelry and learn something technical enough that it kept my mind and fingers busy.

I attended a crochet class taught by designer, Danielle Kassner. (Lauracroft on Ravelry)She was teaching us how to do Jacquard (tapestry) crochet and create a thrummed cowl. I'm making mine out of Louet Gems with Briggs & Little pencil roving inside. you can't really see in the picture but the red is actually a purple and red twisted together called Red Current. I love it and plan to make a pair of mitts to match. Okay, I want to make all Danielle's patterns! I'm in love with her Gryphon. (

I'm still playing around with it, getting used to balancing 2 strands of yarns as well as the thrumming. So I'm not entirely certain what the designs will be when I'm done. LOL We got snow yesterday and it looks like the temperature will be staying below 0 for the foreseeable future. At least,my neck will be warm.
~Daughter #1

Friday, January 1, 2010

Day One

My front door ...too pretty not to share.

Finally we have some snow ... for the New Year at least. Carl has gone to work so once I have finished posting here I am off to finish his grey socks.

Thrilling news. Work on the Heritage vest progressed to this the last couple of weeks.

First I decided to crochet up the steeks and then cut them. As you can see I was being cautious and ended up with freaking huge steeks. The crochet line had to be removed and the steeks trimmed down to a more manageable size but I leave it here by way of pictorial explanation.

This picture should be right up there with Friday the 13th. Scissors AND knitting. It was very scary.
Washed and blocked at last I give you the back and the front. In reality it is a little lighter in colour. The wool is wet. I read an interesting article that said the beauty of Shetland wool is that it is "sticky," which is an excellent description. The wool has a fine halo, ergo, the stitches do not "run" like cotton.
The extra steek stitches had to be drawn out one stitch at a time. Well, now I know for next time. I doubt that I will steek again. This was meant to be a Heritage Vest so it is fitting that it was done in the traditional method. I am just to fussy about "ends."

He specifically asked for a deep "V" so he could wear a shirt and tie. Pictures "in situ" on the human to follow later.

My last completed project for 2009!

As soon as the yarn arrives for the Queen Susan Shawl pictures will be be posted here. I will leave the progress bar up for a while on the Heritage vest. I just want to revel in the 100% for a while.

P.S. If I have a fault or a weakness ( It depends on the situation) it is that I trust people. So I got a message on Ravelry from a woman who wanted some Opera cotton. The same cotton I used for my Welsh Daffodil Tea Cloth. Anyway the long and the short of it is I sent her a package with 5 balls of Opera cotton. Now she has deleted all her information from her Ravelry account and I am out about $40. in yarn and postage. I have her name and address and I would really like to think that she is sending me a money order. BUT saner minds prevail. Why did I think knitter's had more integrity than non knitters? More the fool I. So do I waste the money on another stamp and write her a letter? I do so hate being made to feel like an ass....again. I will never hear the end of this if Carl finds out.