Friday, 30 July 2010

26 Pair Plunge I - Pair #3

Yes, pair #3 is finished! YAY! I'm not setting myself a target or anything, I know I can do 26 pairs in a year, probably by Christmas lol!


The pattern is Escalator Socks, and the yarn is Regia. Lovely colours, and I think they work very well with the pattern.


Did I mention that I signed up on Ravelry for the Harry Potter Knit and Crochet House Cup? Sorting for the current term had already happened, but I was encouraged to "take" the classes as a NQFY (Not Quite a First Year). I signed up for one, Ancient Runes. We were cast a letter, and had to knit/crochet/spin something that began with that letter. It could be the pattern name, or the yarn name, or the colourway name, or the item itself! I got cast E. So... Escalator Socks! Coz they also look like stairs, and Hogwarts has lots of stairs!

I also signed up for Exploding Snap! That takes place during August, and its all about working on WIPs. Bonus points for not casting on anything new! Its all very exciting. Having fun with it :)

And knitting should be about fun! I cast on for Mythos from Knitty.com with my handspun from the Tour de Fleece. I got gauge! But the arm was turning out to be too big so I stopped the decreases at 10, instead of the 14 for the smallest size. I'm gonna go work on it a bit more now too :)


xxx Elle xxx

Wednesday, 28 July 2010

26 Pair Plunge I - Pair #2

YAY! I finished a pair of socks! 


The pattern is Socks of Kindness, and its a really fun and easy pattern. Since its for a super secret thing, I thought the pattern was very fitting (all shall be revealed I'm sure). I've already blogged about this pattern being my first short row heel, and my first Russian Join. So there not much else to say.


Pair #3 will be finished today, and then washed and blocked. They are a Christmas present. Yes, I'm getting a start on things now! Then I have a test knit pair of socks to do, but they won't count towards the Plunge as they are ribbed (remember my rules I set myself?!). Then another pair of socks for a trade with Celtic Swan (which I'm very excited about!) and KnitCave is dyeing me some yarn specifically for this (YAY!). And then I've got two pairs OTN that need finishing, and then... I need to start more socks for Christmas presents! Phew.

I'd just like to show you what I'm spinning at the moment:


Aren't those colours just beautiful?! Its Wenselydale, which is a very long staple. I can draft pretty far with it, and I'm getting it quite finely spun. Its all very exciting. Another delightful purchase from Yummy Yarns UK!

xxx Elle xxx

Tuesday, 27 July 2010

And so the Tour de Fleece ends...

And yes, it has finished. Let me remind you of my goal:

To spin 500g of this:

 
I didn't. I spun 300g. Which is fine. Its ok. I didn't want to push myself, and I didn't want to stop knitting/crocheting either. Or just generally playing on my iPhone (OMG Bubbles!!!). 

 
There they are, the 6 bobbins of singles. Just sitting and looking rather pretty. 
 
 
A close up of the first skein. Mmmm plied goodness (plied whilst watching various Carry On movies - good times when the OH is away!).
Three skeins. All plied. Turned out a bit thicker than what I wanted for the Veil of Isis shawl, and shall instead (hopefully anyway) become Mythos from the latest issue of Knitty. The skeins have been washed and dried, and are a light fingering weight, and together... 900 yards. Booyah.
 
xxx Elle xxx

Friday, 23 July 2010

Russian Join

There I am, knitting away on a pair of socks... and the worst thing happened.

A knot! There was a knot!

Of course, its a superwash yarn, so I couldn't just spit splice *sigh*

I'd heard talk of a Russian Join on some podcast (Knitmore Girls? KnitPicks?), so I googled for a tutorial and found this one. I undid the knot and followed the tutorial:


Its not brilliant, but I figured it would do ok.

And it did! Look! 


You can hardly see the join. Well, I can see the join coz I know where it is. Look, let me point it out to you:


Can you see it now? Yeah you can. And this is what it looks like from the wrong side:




Definitely be using this method to join yarns in the future if I can't spit splice them :D Much nicer than weaving in ends or having a giant knot! WOOP!


xxx Elle xxx

Monday, 19 July 2010

House Renovations - Part 3



As you can know see, there is no wall between the kitchen and dining room! YAY! We're still living in the tiny, tiny room upstairs (but how cool is it that practically everything we own fits in two rooms!). The bathroom has a new bath :D :D Its lovely. That should be finished in about two weeks, and then work on the kitchen to start again (functioning bathroom with a toilet that works and a nice bath became priority over a kitchen that functioned but didn't look good!).

So yeah. Thats the next installment of the house! Hope you enjoyed!

xxx Elle xxx

Short row heels and Tour de Fleece update!

So yeah! We're now on Day 17 of the Tour de Fleece, and I'm on my 5th bobbin of singles:

Very exciting I know, looks just like all the other bobbins! So to vary it up a bit...


Here's a picture of the four finished bobbins! YAY! 

Weirdly enough, I'm still enjoying spinning this, even though there is no colour variations (ie pink into green type thing), I like watching it barber pole with the natural colour variations though, sometimes there is a brown hair, other times a really dark grey, and occasionally what could be a black! 

And I've been knitting! I finished a sock. Yes. A sock. Still haven't finished pair #2 for the 26 Pair Plunge I yet, considering I now have 3 pairs of socks on the needles. 

The pattern is "Socks of Kindness" and the yarn is Violet Green Socrates, in club colourway "Nov '09". The colours have been bleached slightly, its a lot deeper in real life. 

Anyway, take a look at that heel. Yup, thats my first short row heel!


It wasn't too bad to do, I used this tutorial as recommended by the pattern, and then made a modification. The first time I did it, I ended up with big holes where you join back to the pattern on the top of the foot. I tried to pick up a stitch, but it just looked too obvious. So I had a plan.

My plan! Well, it worked pretty darn well I have to say. Instead of wrapping the first and last heel stitches, don't! Leave them free. Wrap the second and the second to last stitch. No holes! I was very impressed. Its probably already known out there to do that, but it was my first short row heel, I didn't do masses of research to find out how to stop the holes (I just asked Twitter lol), and I feel slightly intelligent that I came up with this!

And you know what?
 

I liked knitting it! Much faster than a heel flap, and you go straight back to having the same number of stitches! No gussett decreases! Time saver ;)

xxx Elle xxx

Wednesday, 7 July 2010

House Renovations

Hopefully this will work! We're going to be making videos of the house renovations to track the progress, its a bit more fun than just looking at pictures, plus you get to see me making a fool of myself :D 

Enjoy!



xxx Elle xxx

Tuesday, 6 July 2010

Tour de Fleece - Days 2 and 3

Its now day 4 of the Tour de Fleece (go Team Social woooo!), and I kept missing the daily thread to post in as it was too dark when I finished spinning at night to take a photo, and in the morning the thread had been locked! The picture below is day 2's spinning, and I had almost finished my 50g bit of fluff. I kept thinking I could finish it, but then it took me a further 3 hours on day 3 to finish it.

 

There's the finished bobbin! I still haven't managed to capture a truly accurate colour of the fibre. Its a light grey-brown, with darker flecks running through it. I'm really enjoying spinning a natural coloured fibre.


And theres my second bobbin as it started. I guess I spun for about 5 or 6 hours yesterday.


Being stuck upstairs in a small "living room"... well.. I'm not enjoying it. I've got some audiobooks though, and I'm so engrossed in listening to "The Help" by Kathryn Stockett. I'm listening and I'm spinning... before I know it a whole hour has gone by!

My knitting yesterday involved 3 rows on my Harry Shawl at knit night. You see, there's a dog, and she's adorable and I sit for most of the evening petting her. And I looked at a sock book too (Think Outside the Sox), and there was so much I wanted to knit, I may just have to borrow it :D

xxx Elle xxx

Saturday, 3 July 2010

Tour de Fleece - Day 1

Tour de Fleece Day 1 is over! And here is what I am spinning! I have 500g of natural light grey corriedale from Handspinner. It's gorgeous stuff, very soft, hardly any crappy bits in it. Very easy to draft.




Here is the end of day 1, and how much I've spun. I'm not sure exactly how much it is, coz I couldn't be bothered to weigh my fluff left over. You know, the scales are upstairs, I was downstairs... its just so much effort when you could spin just that little bit more!
 

The exciting thing is that photo of my spinning... taken on OH's new iPhone4. Oh yes, iPhone4 has a pretty decent flash on it! Which means, I now have an iPhone 3GS. I can multitask now :D Happy!

Moving the living room upstairs today, not sure how well I will be able to spin. There's not that much room, definitely no room for my chair, so I'll be sitting on the Bedinge (ie a sofa bed from IKEA!), with cushions to prop me up lmao! It could get a little interesting now ;)

xxx Elle xxx

Friday, 2 July 2010

What I have mostly been doing...

A picture free post today I'm afraid. The sun has run away and the lights in this house are terrible.

I have been knitting socks! Finished the first Simple Skyp Sock (black, man size), and started the second. Finished the first Snakes on a Sock, will be starting the second after writing this. Doing one repeat a night of the shawl from Victorian Lace Today (diamond lace panel). Trying to do a square on the second sock yarn blankie every night too. 

I haven't spun this week! I know, shocking! I'm preparing for the Tour de Fleece which starts on Saturday 3rd July. I've weighed out my 500g of corriedale into 50g bits, and have started pre-drafting. Then I can just sit and spin. I want lace weight. I want 1200yards of 2 ply laceweight to knit the Veil of Isis. 

House news: the kitchen wall will be coming down next week! Yes, the revonations are starting! YAY! The living room will be moving upstairs for the next few weeks, as we have an open living/dining room, so we'll be trying to reduce the dust getting on things. Fun times. 

xxx Elle xxx 

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