Returning from a New Year break in rural France I feel fired up to get on with new projects, tidy up old ones and reflect back on the successes and failures, craftwise, of 2019. A few days in the countryside with added trips to the coast has fed my imagination!
I am still on a journey to use up my stash of wool. I cast on my latest project 24th December, just after I’d finished my final Christmas gifts. Using Nepal and Alaska by DROPS Design and who doesn’t love a stripe or two?!
I was quite prolific last year, although there were gaps in creativity and not everything was a triumph. Luckily I blogged quite bit so there are truths to be told here and I realise some things didn’t even make it the page. I also learned a few things, one of which was a new crochet stitch. I have now made four things with hooks rather than knitting sticks, adding a different dimension to my crafting bow.
A mini summary of 2019 makes is:
Helping a friend with a baby knit project, knitting hats for the homeless, four baby/toddler cardigans, one set of booties, one scarf, one dreadful lacy top, handsewing a big handful of patchwork hexagons, machine sewing other patchwork (part of a throw and three elephants), bunting and Christmas decorations, two hats for a 3 year old, a baby tunic dress in clashing colours, and two crochet blankets (one a gift for MIL, brownie points here!) , and adding a big applique ‘M’ to a little girls’ book bag.
So onwards into 2020 what plans are afoot for all? Crafting – I intend to learn at least one new thing, not sure what it is yet!
There’s been a lot going on, including a little knitting finishing. My camera is playing up – so forgive the wonkiness of these pics (it’s not sewed up wonky, it’s just the way it’s laid out!)
I love this Drops Nepal Blanket in cream, navy and dark teal. It’s a big knee blanket size – started as a gift, but now to be kept for myself (I have gifted an alternative knit so the intended recipient hasn’t missed out!).
I’ve been out and about a bit, another trip to Whitstable – my first of 2018 – rather chilly and blowy but ooh it was lovely to chase the winter cobwebs away one afternoon.
I’ve been meeting with friends, one of my plans for the New Year to do just that.
I have been sewing, two tops, a pair of shorts, pics will follow. For now I’m just packing them in a suitcase for another trip – this time to slightly further shores – looking forward to a 12 hour flight, movies planned, knitting planned. Watch this space!
I have been working on finishing WIPs, particularly yarny ones. This one in Drops Andes 65% wool, 35% alpaca, purchased when visiting a lovely little local yarn store Little Woollie in Beckenham, Kent, UK. I love an independent wool shop. I always find the customer service so fantastic and you can’t beat a good natter about woolly things! https://www.littlewoollie.co.uk/
I had time for a little sewing project too. Fabric selected from my stash a few days ago turned into a the most useful storage system for circular knitting needles. The pocket at the bottom is perfect for spare needle needle tips and cables. It has made me think about what circulars I prefer – possibly KnitPro Symphonie with fixed tips for their smoothness and attractiveness = I always say the rainbows make even black knitting pretty! I like the interchangeable ones but have had a bit of bad luck with rough fixings and occasionally the screw has unwound despite all my efforts with regularly fixing the tips on.
So two projects down, still numerous ones to be tackled, but this is progress, yay!
Another week into 2018. Am I keeping up my Enthusiams?
Reiteration from last week –
- Keep on track with the diet started in October
- Sort out craft stuff all over the house
- Think seriously about the next step jobwise/careerwise and make good choices
- Make a bucket list of things to do compelled by a particular date
- Become more involved in day to day household accounting/finance
Yes, the dieting has been going well, despite eating out twice, according to my own bathroom scales I am still more or less on track. My view is, enjoy food, enjoy company, be extra sensible when eating at home. the two counterbalance each other and life doesn’t get boring!
Craft sorting is slow but still sorting.
Another yarn project ripped back and well into the reknit. Another Drops Andes project, it was a short sleeved jacket, a DROPs pattern which just was a disaster, now it’s 3/4 of a cushion using a Sirdar pattern when gauge this time is not so important.
A little fabric project has also been decided upon – will blog pics when finished – technically this will become a fabric/yarn combi project. Any guesses?
Job/Career – a few prospects thought about, one visited, no conclusions yet. Who would have thought of a coffee shop run from a horse box parked in a restaurant car park? That was just one opportunity. Yes, really!
Bucket list – the bucket is empty at the moment!
Household accounting – can I count last week’s decision to menu plan rather than random buy the main weekly shop? It means I will use up everything I buy, not throw out a thing, not waste any money! This isn’t big inroads to my ‘Enthusiasm’ but it’s a start. You should have seen my husband’s surprise when I served up ‘cauliflower rice’ for dinner yesterday (Enthusisam 1. Diet planning, Enthusiasm 5. Using what we had, Conclusion – we both thought it delicious, it was a win/win!)
Happy crafting and creating. Another week, another zillion projects in the making!
Keeping up ‘Enthusiasms’ for the new year (see yesterday’s post) I’ve had a ripping afternoon.
I remember starting this when a lovely new wool shop, Little Woollie in Beckenham, Kent opened. DROPS Muscat, a beautiful mercerised cotton, three different shades. I found the pattern and the knitted piece ‘hidden’ in my craft room. I was trying to adjust a child’s pattern and as it grew realised it wasn’t going to work out how I imagined. I struggle with the gauge of DROPS yarns sometimes. Does anyone else?
This is what I have now. I am happily satisfied rather than guilt ridden with yet again another WIP or a UFO.
I promised to reveal what was made with this
I gifted a finished item it to a friend and couldn’t show off here before Christmas (or her birthday!)
Ta da! Just a hat, but a great knit. I loved making it so much and I had enough yarn left – so I made another one exactly the same for myself. We live about 180 miles away from each other so there is little chance we will bump into each other wearing it – though maybe that would be fun!
I hope you all had a good Christmas. I know I overindulged with foodie treats, chilled out a bit and knitted little. Who was able to knit or craft a lot? I hope some of you. Between chopping veg, peeling sprouts, dashing in and out of the kitchen, topping up glasses and plates that there was little time to think about picking up pins and yarn, though I did fix a little error on one WIP Boxing Day evening, more of that to be shown off here later in the week hopefully. Loving working with DROPS Nepal wool (there’s a hint of more to come.)
I am already thinking about the changes I shall make for the better in 2018. There will be more organised crafting time for one thing. There will be a little entrepreneurial thinking, some work will be sorted and I shall spend more time with loved ones far and near. I shall be glad to see 2017 gone.
If you are on a mid Christmas/New Year break then I hope you are having fun.
It’s getting chillier and chillier in the S E of England. What an excuse to sit and knit – do I ever need an excuse? Actually, no, knitting is like breathing to me. Sadly, sometimes those ‘breaths’ are a little more successful than others.
For a new cowl I made this week I used Rico Creative Bonbon yarn. I didn’t like working with it and I don’t actually love the cowl itself. I am already thinking it will pill easily, a miff for yarn crafters! I was playing with a scarf pattern which was supposed to be on smaller needles with skinnier yarn. I knitted a short length with this super chunky yarn and sewed the ends together to get it over and done with. The hat is made from DROPS Nepal – now, I love this yarn – but I hate the hat! I fudged a hat pattern which should have used a different yarn gauge again, and made up a lot as I went along (ripping back and reknitting more than once). Together this pair of purply things look ok on the model head but this time the creations don’t make me smile widely.
Talking of colours, purple in this case. Have you ever looked at your stash of yarn and thought ‘hey, 50 shades of grey/purple/pink/fill in the blank’? I guess I have a lot of purple in mine, perhaps not 50 shades but it’s a close thing between purple and green. What are your 50 shades?
Back to the two sticks now. Hopefully the next project is more of a success. I am still working on several WIPS which I dip in and out of. These two items were supposed to be quick knits (they were), to satisfy my soul with a start and a finish of something tangible.