04/10/2016 § 2 Comments
I started this shawl way back – can’t even remember when, but maybe February time. It’s been keeping me company throughout the year for a few rows at a time, here and there, in the evenings and I decided that as finish was overdue I took it on holiday with me to Cornwall.
My usual style of an elongated, knitted triangle in a variety of stitches that take my fancy, then my favourite pineapple-ish crochet edging.
I did finish it whilst on holiday and brought it home for blocking and end-stitching-in. Almost as soon as October arrived, it was time to wear it during the evenings. It’s a comforting extra layer around my shoulders and very soft. The yarn – a linen mix – was a charity shop buy for just a couple of pounds. It’s gone a long way, as I made this shawl for my daughter earlier in the year.
The apples are ripening and I’ve Sloe & Apple Jelly underway in the kitchen as well as piles of dried fruit, onions, sugar and bottles of vinegar all ready for chutney-making. Just awaiting my delivery of jam jars and then we’re off …
Patchwork and pickling are on the agenda for this week. What are you up to?
12/10/2014 § 7 Comments
Those yarncakes that I wound a few weeks ago on our return from west Wales couldn’t wait to be cast onto my needles. Many a happy evening have I knitted along and I’m thrilled with my Shetland wool shawl, from a flock of sheep near Newcastle Emlyn.
I made the shawl especially to be worn over my favourite vintage wool coat made from Welsh tapestry (I have several of these coats) and I love them all. This one though is the longest and comes right down to my knees. I’m hoping that the weather at the Winchester Cathedral Christmas Market will be crisp – and dry! I know I’m going to need to layer up to keep warm through the long days in my log cabin and there’s nothing like layers of wool to keep out the cold.
This morning I found the perfect clasp – a vintage belt buckle that after a few adjustments is perfect. The stones pick up the colours of the coat and I love the filigree effect on the textured wool.
I didn’t use a pattern for my shawl but did find a tutorial online that I can’t for the life of me find now, but it involved casting on 2 stitches, knitting 6 rows and then doing something complicated that ended up with 7 stitches. Anyway, off I went increasing in the middle and at either end, adding in a row of k1, psso for a bit of interest every so often before I found another stitch that I think is called Textured Stocking Stitch. It’s SO easy. Every knit row simply s1 purlwise, k1, yo needle then psso. It creates a lovely long textured stitch pattern and it’s easy to work out how to keep the pattern in line as the stitches seem to fall into pairs ready for the next knit row to be worked (if you see what I mean). Every other row is purled.
The original triangular shawl didn’t ‘do it’ for me so I added in a garter stitch collar to match the border, and worked a wide panel on one side (no pattern, it just sort of happened this way), but I love the shaped effect, creating a shoulder. I always wanted to wear it with the centre point off-centre at the back and this does the trick.
I’m not an expert knitter but love making up textures and seeing something that I have in my head taking shape on my needles.
What do you think? I’m going to pop over to Handmade Monday where I used to be a regular visitor so I’m off to see what everyone’s been making and I’m in for one bit catch-up!
17/06/2014 § Leave a comment
Flora takes a dip in the garden pond!
Latest lace-weight shawl is finished and blocked and ready-to-wear on summer evenings …
Yet another make-it-up-as-I-go-along crescent-shaped shawl completed – yay! Knitted from end to end and finished off with a pineapple crocheted lacey border. I’m totally besotted with this yarn and am now making up another one in the Luckwells burnt orange.
And on a recent jaunt to a local market town, Himself treated me to the prettiest Molly Brett print that I’d fallen in love with! It’s called ‘Going Shopping’ and all the little creatures are busily filling their shopping baskets.
So, I hope the sun is shining on you this week. I can’t believe it’s the longest day on Saturday – where has this year gone?
24/04/2014 § 5 Comments
at last, after a proper ‘love-hate’ relationship with lace-weight, I’m in love!
I have always absolutely loved the yarn, the colours, the touch but how I struggled with finding a pattern. In the end, I didn’t!!! I just made it up …
On a bright and sunny day, I pinned and blocked my crescent shaped … what? Scarf? Stole? Shawl? Well, whatever you want to call it, it blocked beautifully! What a transformation this simple process performs from crinkly, squished, uneven knitting into the softest gossamer flowing shape …
I started with 20 stitches and then increased at one end until I had about 80 stitches; worked straight until I reckoned I was about half way, added a few panels of holey detail and then decreased my way back down to the other end! Simples!!
I had yarn left over for an edging and decided to add 3 rows of double crochet, 3 rows of trebles and then a final couple of rows of doubles again. The simplest stitches seemed to work well for me!
I love the curly top edge separated from the main pattern with a 4-row cable.
I’m now truly smitten with lace-weight – again – and have more NDS on my needles already …
and there’s more …
Oh – isn’t that Luckwells russet just the most delicious colour? Let’s hope it’s knitted up before it’s Autumn! The Drops taupe was equally irresistible.
I have so many quilts and exciting quilty things to share, but for now, I’m going back to the sofa to finish a few more rows of pink lace before tucking up the collies and saying goodnight!
Have a lovely weekend
21/03/2014 § Leave a comment
A sea-green gossamer thread winds between my needles with silken sheen and breathy touch …
I fell in love with Exmoor as a young girl. I knew the place before I could walk – where the East Lyn meets the West Lyn lies Lynmouth in North Devon – a tiny seaside village forever bound to Lynton, at the top of the hill, by the Cliff Railway and surrounded by the mystical beauty of Exmoor. I must go there again very soon.
There’s lots about the Natural Dye Studio on their website and I can only think that some of the magic of their surroundings is woven into their most beautiful yarns – I can almost feel it when I unwrap a skein of their deliciously dyed – and Exmoor named – yarn.
How I have struggled with beautiful Withypool. I began my search for patterns well before it arrived through the letter box and throughout the lengthy wait for my yarn toys to be delivered just after Christmas. Crochet patterns stacked up in my head, on my laptop and my chair-side table but no matter how I tried, none worked for me on my hook.
I then found the Rill Scarf on Ravelry. Whilst pondering the picture problem in Coventry last week, I began knitting – and just as with my previous attempts – failed! (Not due to the pattern which is well written). In desperation, I cast on just 20 stitches once more and did my own thing …
What do you think? I’m not through my first yarn cake yet, so there’s a way to go but I’m in no rush. Sometimes I’ll snatch just a couple of rows whilst I enjoy a bit of a sit down, sometimes a whole evening – it makes no difference – it grows VERY slowly and I’m not measuring! I shall reach half-way at some point in April – maybe when I’ve just started yarn cake 2.
Will the 2nd half look like the first – more or less – probably!! I haven’t written it down and counting rows is fiendishly difficult. One thing’s for sure – I’m not unravelling it again!! I can’t help thinking about a lacy border, but maybe the simplicity of the wobbly edge (hopefully less wobbly once blocked), will work.
Have you worked with lace yarn that isn’t fluffy? I’m not sure I’m a good enough knitter, really. Yarn with a bit of pile seems to hide a multitude of sins. All I can see are wobbles, when I look at the close-ups – oh dear.
What’s on your needles/hook as Spring arrives?
Enjoy the weekend.