yarn

Visiting Ye Olde Faversham and a Rainbow Knit

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This weekend the warm weather made a pleasant change from the recent snow and chills. On Sunday we had a trip to Faversham in Kent for my husband’s birthday treat. He and our son went on a tour of the Shepherd Neame Brewery, whilst I relaxed in a nearby coffee shop then took a stroll around the town.

suninnfavershamcolonadesfaversham

Parts of Faversham are very old, 14th Century Pub, The Sun Inn, we ended up here later for lunch, yum!.  The Colonades in Market Square (lovely market in the week apparently, but very quiet on a Sunday).

There’s a wonderful looking yarn shop – unfortunately for me, closed that day for private workshops – a good excuse to go back another day. The Yarn Depository is housed in The Old Pharmacy, built in 1240.

yarndiposfaversham   pharmacyfaversham

Much of the town isn’t as attractive, but I think I saw some of the best bits!

On returning home I cast on a new project. I am supposed to be completing WIPs but I am allowed a few new ones – and this is actually an attack on my stash so it counts towards ‘tidying and sorting’ my yarn.

It’s difficult to see here but these are sleeves for a baby dress and the green will be part of the body of the dress.  Watch this space! Adriafil Knitcol knits in stripes ‘like a rainbow’.  Rico Baby Classic is one of my ‘go to’ yarns for many a baby project. Anyone here also knitting rainbows?

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The beginning of ‘a rainbow’
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Two craft projects finished

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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/

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This …
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became this !

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!

circneedleholder.jpg  circneedleholderfull

Christmas Reveal – 2 for 1

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I promised to reveal what was made with this

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I gifted a finished item it to a friend and couldn’t show off here before Christmas (or her birthday!)

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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.

 

50 Shades of …

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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.

purple cowl and hat.jpg

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.

 

Painted yarn bowl makes knitting pretty ! (Nearing the end of NaKniCromo on Ravelry too)

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I decorated a pottery yarn bowl at a Pottery Painting shop early this month – oh what fun !  I was slightly worried my attempt at painting anything might look like a child’s artistry (my ‘skills’ tend to be woolly or in fabric) but luckily with a little help of a ‘magic’ paint I think the finished product was a success. I was reluctant to post pics until it was fired in case it was a disaster.yarn bowls

https://www.emmaspotteryparlour.com/

Mine’s on the left.  I painted a pattern you can’t see too well(!),  covered it with a white glaze that went black and ‘cracked’ on firing.  My friend Susan (her bowl on the right) was painted in green/blue, then a grey glaze was painted on and the ‘bit’s in the glaze exploded on firing changing the colour and giving a lovely marbled effect.

 

Finished and in use !

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So, Love this Cardigan is growing.  DSC02277

Now I have the two fronts and almost the front.  Meribel yarn by Schoeller and Stahl is lovely to work with but will be a nightmare to sew up with so I am scrabbling around in my stash to find a good sewing up yarn, one that won’t break when I pull together mattress stitch.

 

 

 

NaKniCromo, the yarn challenge for March on Ravelry.com is almost over.

Day 26 Projectless yarn? Yes – lots of it – here is just some ….DSC02209 and currently sorting my stash so much more is projectless.

Day 27 – For those who know me, I am never working on one thing at the same time.  I have ‘easy’ knitting which is portable (eg in the car or with me for knit club when I can chat, drink coffee and not go home with mistakes that need ripping out later), then slightly more difficult knitting for when I want a challenge.  I have WIPs where I have got bored or stuck or gone wrong – they go into storage and often take a little while to finish or I never finish them!

Day 28 Share my Progress – see above, Love this Cardigan in Meribel teal and navy blue – love love love this cardigan is what I shall call it!

Day 29 Any Other Crafts? Yes, as blogged here, I sew a bit too. Doughnuts and Embroidery Hoops on recent posts.  I have also tried others, hand felting, cross stitch, mosaics are amongst them.  Oh, and I did silk painting and card making as well. I guess I have a brain that loves to create and try new things.

Day 30 – tomorrow – Crafts I would like to learn – thinking ….

Have a great day, whatever you are doing.  And if anyone wants to suggest a project for that projectless yarn please feel free to do so – I have 150g/150m chunky yarn, variegated.  It’s Adriafil Mistero, acrylic and wool.

 

 

 

Meribel: Love this is Growing, Another craft and still NacKniCroMo ing

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I have had more time recently and what have I done with a lot of it!  Wasted it!  Why is it that the more time one has the less efficient one can be?  I aim to do better during the next few days. Works in progress – Love this Cardigan – it’s growing steadily.  I now have 2 fronts and this much of the back of it. Schoeller and Stahl Meribel is great to work with.

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Another project – this time to make a little ££ – they’re going to be calorie free, sugar free, look edible (but won’t be), available in a shop near me soon.  More to follow another day …

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And Rav Challenge NaKnicroMo continuing, slightly not on the same time zones, but

Day 13 Fave Tool – KnitPro Symfonie needles, prefer the straights but use interchangeables too – occasionally the screw comes undone though, which makes a knit frustrating.

Day 14 Share My Progress – see above, ML181 Love this Cardigan – I LOVE THIS CARDIGAN

Day 15 Dream Craft Storage – I look at Pinterest often and see all these lovely work and hobby stations and despair at mine sometimes!  I take inspiration from those with traditional storage, dressers, wooden storage with twiddly fixings, yarn and fabric in colour co-ordinations or complementary patterns or gauges.   For basic storage – this would be good, and simple yarn storage

I would love a yarn and fabric combo like this yarnfabric storage

 

Mine is more like this yarnstash

 

Whilst functional is just not pretty.

Must get on, yarn to store prettily and projects to finish. What’s on your pins or what are you sticking with needle and thread?

 

 

When do I craft? Day 9, Day 10, Day 11, Knitting challenge, etc. NaKnitCroMo

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Day 9 of the NaKnitCroMo challenge on Ravelry.com – though in reality it’s actually Day 11 and I am catching up.

When? Mainly the evenings if it’s knitting.  I cosy myself up on the sofa, cat to the left of me,  after dinner, if I am knitting something easy then the tv is on too.

If it’s sewing, by machine, then that’s a daytime thing.  I usually want to be on my own in the house, no husband to pop in and interrupt me – risking me sewing through my own fingers or going askew on the piece I am sewing.  I often think he feels my sewing efforts are a waste of time – he doesn’t ‘get’ the pleasure made from handcrafting.

 

Day 10 of the NaKnitCroMo challenge – What’s my crafting fuel?

Coffee, decaff and when trying to be good – water. If I have the odd evening tipple, I end up putting the knitting down as I can’t concentrate – or I think I can but looking at anything I’ve knitting the next morning can be slightly shameful, and I might not have the right number of stitches on each row still!  Never say never though – I was invited to a Craft and Cocktails event yesterday – didn’t go as I had other plans – looking forward to hearing how friends got on – and if anything crafty was achieved. I suspect there was more giggles and drinking than crafting – but that’s not a bad thing occasionally.  Shame to miss it. (Memories of being a teenager, moons ago, hemming a skirt one evening, whilst fuelled with cider – argh, the finished hem was soooo bad!)

Day 11 – today – What do I listen to when crafting?  As I said, when knitting, it’s usually the tv.  When sewing, I love catching up on BBC London Radio (JoAnne Good in the afternoon, particularly The Barking Hour on Thursday afternoons or I love a bit of Robert Elms and his listed Londoner slot), or my cds –  a bit of retro 1980’s/1990s’s – my era, when I knew all the words and sang along – maybe that’s why I sew alone at home – then there’s no shame in singing along out loud and out of tune, ha ha!  Depending on the mood of the day – Fleetwood Mac, for a singsong, Enjya for thoughfulness, Cher for a jig about when ironing fabric, bit of newer stuff, eg. Mumford and Sons – husband would definitely head out of the house for Mumford – he hates them.  Loving this challenge – it really makes me think how and why I craft.

drops merino extra fineWool ….

Latest knitting news – I guess part of the March challenge but this might slip into April.  I have finished both fronts of my ML181 Love this Cardigan.  I have sold some of my stash which has been quite carthartic – you know those yarns you have had for ages and just aren’t going to be turned into something as you have either gone off them, or just don’t have enough in quantity?  – they’ve gone to good homes.  I have (accidently) purchased some yarn for a couple of baby projects.  A friend in Belgium is due in May – I haven’t started anything yet – got to get my sticks clicking – not sure if it’s a boy or a girl, hoping this lovely shade of yellow will be a good choice.  DROPS Merino Extra Fine in light yellow. (Great local yarn store –  http://www.littlewoollie.co.uk/ – always a warm welcome from the owner Trudy.)  ‘Accidently’ purchased as I have plenty of yarn still in my stash – but this was irresistable and DROPS is reasonable prices and good quality.

 

drops merino extra fine light yellow