Monday, 26 September 2011

Year of Projects Week 11

This is only a quick update on last week's knitting, since I spent last week moving. and I love, love, love my new house. We're not unpacked yet, but it already feels less like student digs and more like a home than my last house.

My scarf now measures 72cm (2 foot 3 inches), and it's looking really good. Only problem is, apart from needed more yarn, I was told that a scarf needs to be one and a half times the height of the person it's intended for, which would make it 9 feet long! I don't think it'll ever be finished if I aim for that...

I also got a "surprise" book from the boy this week.

I highly recommend it. It's got some lovely sock designs, and they're all knitted in different ways to encourage you to try new techniques. it's also got some really interesting articles, including one about using the pooling from hand dyed yarns to make an argyle pattern.

I said "surprise" because last week the boy and I had a conversation that went a little bit like this:

Boy (out of the blue): What was that book that we saw in the knitting shop in the Lake District again?
Me: Which book?
Boy: It has something to do with socks and sex. And it had toe-less stripy socks on the front.
Me: I don't know, why?
Boy: No reason, but could you ask on your knitting website (meaning Ravelry)

And 5 minutes later he had his answer, and I had a present on the way! I love Ravelry

Sunday, 18 September 2011

Year of Projects Week 10

I'm rehashing an old, and not very good picture here, since I forgot to take one when it was still daylight! I've been working on the Warhammer scarf for my boyfriend, and I have to say, it's quite dull. It's almost entirely black double knitting on 3.5mm needles... So it takes a very long time, having to move the yarn after each stitch. But it'll be warm and it's relaxing to do.

I also moved all my stuff into my new house today, so I might disappear for a while at the end of next week, as I don't know when I'll get internet again!

Friday, 16 September 2011

FO Friday - The Big Reveal

Meet Daisy the Duck!

Ok, not such a big reveal, unless any of you were waiting on tenterhooks to see what all those little bits of knitting were made up into, which I very much doubt.

Daisy is made for this kit: Daizy Duck, but since she is a non-dyslexic duck, I renamed her. Also, my picture is far more accurate for the colours than the one on the kit.

I had a few gauge issues (and by that I mean that I knew I had the wrong gauge, but carried on anyway, as I thought it wouldn't matter.) The problem with the body was easy to fix by extending the tail, but the head was the major problem. It was a really weird shape and much too big for the neck, and the slit for the beak was about twice as long as it should have been. I ended up sewing darts up either side of the head to give it a more normal shape, and just closing up the slits either side of the beak. I think she turned out quite well considering.

For more FO Friday posts, click here

Wednesday, 14 September 2011

WIP Wednesday - Holiday Knitting

This is what I knitted on my holiday. You should see the finished item on Friday, but until then, can you guess what it is?

No prize I'm afraid, I just want to see if you can tell =)

Check out more WIP posts here

Tuesday, 13 September 2011

The Lake District

Warning: Very long, picture heavy and possibly boring post! My advice is just to scan the pretty pictures!

Well, we had an amazing holiday in the Lake District. We stayed in my family's time share, which has an attached pool, sauna, hot tub, steam room and spa. Although you have to pay for spa treatments, the rest are entirely free to use if you are staying there. I have to say, we went every single day and it was so relaxing!

Obviously I couldn't take a picture of the pool, but I found this one on the timeshare website.

The view out of the cottage was amazing. The back garden backed on to the River Leven and it was so tranquil. Plus there is a steam train which runs along the opposite bank.
The cottages are attached to the Whitewater hotel, which is an old cotton mill and blue mill, and the grounds are dotted with old mill machinery
And you can sit outside of the bar on the banks of the river, which is a gorgeous place to relax.
On Sunday we went to the Lakeland Motor Museum, which is literally 30 seconds walk up the road from the cottage, and has some amazing cars
They have cars and bikes from every evolution of mechanical transport, and even a special exhibition on the bluebird cars and boats which broke the land and water speed records.

Then on Monday, we tried to go to the supermarket, but accidentally drove the wrong way down the road and ended up in Kendal! Not that I minded, because it had a yarn store I wanted to visit. I promise it wasn't deliberate...
I got this gorgeous locally hand-dyed sock yarn from William's Wools, which looks like an amazing place to sit and knit. Then we went to the chocolate house, which has about 25 different types of hot chocolate, as well as doing chocolate, cakes and ice cream sundaes
We did actually then manage to find the supermarket, and visited the nearby crystal factory, where you could watch them make wineglasses.

On Tuesday we went on the steam train! I was like a small child.

It took us to Lake Windermere, where we went for a walk round the lake and into Great Knott Wood

On Wednesday we had a day in the spa. We had a Turkish Mud Rasul, which was hilarious. Me and the boy were covered from head to toe in white, red and green mud, and sitting in a fake Turkish bath which was also a steam room. I wish I could have got photos! But it was very relaxing, and left our skin very soft, and then we sat in the outdoor hot tub for an hour or so, which was even more relaxing.

On Thursday, we went on a historical walk around Ambleside, which is a beautiful little village.
The last one is of a bridge house, built over the river to store apples, and then home to a carpenter, his wife, 6 children and his workshop! It's tiny.
Then we drove up to Grasmere, just to buy the most amazing gingerbread in the world. I seriously could eat it for every meal.
I also got this amazing new knitting bag.

On Friday we went for a long, long drive attempting to find The Wool Clip in Caldbeck. Although we got very lost, there was some beautiful scenery on the way.
When we finally found the shop, it was so worth it. It's definitely my new favourite shop, and I wish it was near enough for me to visit every week!
They had decorated the entire area outside their shop for Woolfest/their 10th birthday, and it looked amazing. And I did some decent shopping

Some local, undyed 50% Blue Faced Leicester/50% Mohair to make a jumper for my mum, which she's been asking for for a while

And some Young Goat Mohair, which I need to find the perfect pattern for. At the moment I'm just enjoying picking it up and squishing it! We actually tried to visit this farm, which has a farm shop, and see the goats, but it was closed, so I was really glad to find this in the Wool Clip.

Then we indulged out childish side and went to Eden Ostrich World, and fed the animals.
I have never heard anyone snore as loudly as this pig!

And we played on the kiddy playground.

I also got some amazing pictures of wildlife I couldn't fit anywhere but wanted to show off!

So yes, that was my holiday. Congratulations if you got this far!

Sunday, 11 September 2011

Year of Projects - Week 9

I've been on holiday all last week, of which, more later. I intended to do a lot of work on my embroidery, but knitting kind of got in the way.

Also, I realised that I would need a youtube tutorial to do any of the other stitches, as I cannot understand the written instructions. It's not the neatest piece of embroidery, but as a first project, I'm proud of it so far.

Friday, 2 September 2011

Tomorrow's Holiday


Clean clothes: Drying at the moment
Packed: Nope
Directions to the cottage: Check
Food bought: Nope
House clean and tidy: Well better than it was, but nope
Plan for things to do for the week: Nope
Directions to every yarn store in the area (and some not): Check times 7

I wonder where my priorities lie?

Thursday, 1 September 2011

Year of Projects Week 7 & 8

Well, in all honesty, I haven't had much time for crafts at all this week, but I have made a start on the embroidery which was intended to be my Gran's 70th birthday present. I'm not sure if I've mentioned this before, but my Grandad bought her this embroidery kit many years ago, to do when she retired. However, they ended up retiring at the same time, so she didn't have as much free time as she thought she would, and now she can't see well enough to do it. So, she gave it to me, and told me that when it was finished, she would get it framed.
Anyway, this is as far as I've got so far. I haven't done any embroidery before, so this is a new experience for me. Currently, I'm only doing satin stitch, as it's quite easy, but I will have to learn a lot of new stitches before long. It's not perfect, but I think my Gran won't mind.

But as you can see, it's pretty huge, so she might not get it for her birthday, which is on the 25th September... Ah well, maybe for Christmas instead...

I've also been playing with my new camera. It's AMAZING
Here it is. It's a Fujifilm Finepix S2950, if anyone knows cameras. You would have got me in the picture with it, doing a stereotypical myspace pose, but I have a massive cold sore on my lip right now =( Any suggestions for getting rid?

I've been experimenting with the new camera in different lights, zooms and focuses. A selection of the photos:

I don't think Siouxsie and Jessie were too impressed at being forced into modelling for me, but they're just too cute not to photograph!

It even does movement without blurring! As an example, here's the boy painting:
He looks a bit like he's impersonating the statue of liberty.

Anyway, as you can see, I'm no photographer, but expect more and better pictures now that I no longer have to take ten of the same thing to get one that is usable