Sunday, 25 August 2013

Third Year of Projects Week 8

Arielle has been in time out this week, not for anything that's gone wrong with it, but because I haven't had the best week, and I really couldn't face a fingering weight sweater.

Instead, I've been knitting mindless things, and have made another two preemie outfits.

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I really like this one, the colourway is called "Easter Basket," and I think it's really cute. I was a bit worried that all the different colours would overwhelm a preemie, but I think that there must be parents out there that would love the dress their little on in these bright, happy colours.

This brings my total to donate to 9 cardigans, 5 hats and 2 bonnets, and I will be dropping them off at my hospital's NICU early next week.

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I am enjoying the long weekend, it's nice to know that I don't have to go into the hospital tomorrow, and I decided to start a new project that makes me happy, just because. I was gifted a Juno Fibre Arts Angora/Tussah braid, which was slightly felted, but was in gorgeous shades of blue and green.

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It takes a fair bit of pre-drafting to spin it, but oh my god it is gorgeous. It's buttery soft and smooth, and I just want to roll around in it, and hug it and squish it! I'm in love, and I managed to spin an entire single yesterday, because I just didn't want to stop! I bet that I will have some finished yarn by the end of this weekend, and I will need to find the perfect project for it. Here's to hoping I don't ruin it.

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Sunday, 18 August 2013

Third Year of Projects Week 7

Arielle is coming along really well at the moment, I'm half way up the back, and although knitting a top with fingering weight yarn is slow going, I'm doing a lot better than expected.

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I'm really pleased with how it's looking. It's the first time I've ever used the recommended yarn for the pattern, as I bought the yarn about three years ago, before I knew that you didn't have to follow a pattern to the letter to make it look good, but I'm glad that I did. I think the two go together perfectly.

But this week, I've really been on a preemie knitting kick.

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For anyone who doesn't know, I donate these tiny hats and cardigans to the neonatal intensive care unit at the hospital which I'm placed at. I love making sets, because I feel that micropreemies, and their families, deserve cute clothes just like any other. Being able to dress up their baby in something made with care and love add a bit of normality to a very difficult situation.

I'm always on the look out for stitch patterns that will fit on the hats and cardigans, but wouldn't overwhelm a tiny baby. The patterns would need to be between 4 and 12 stitches wide and no more than 16 rows high. If anyone has any suggestions, I would welcome them!

In none knitting news, I have started a trauma and orthopaedics attachment this week, and ironically, I managed to tear a ligament in my ankle at trampolining on Sunday, so I was on crutches all week, which has been a bit miserable. Thankfully, it was only a week, so I'm off them now, and limping around a bit. Hopefully it'll all clear up soon though!

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Sunday, 11 August 2013

Third Year of Projects Week 6

So this is the first week I haven't been able to cross anything off my list!

I'm still working on Arielle, but it's pretty slow going. Tiny yarn and needles combined with a pattern that I have to think about mean that I can only knit on it when I'm a) at home and b) awake enough to concentrate

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So far I've got the waistband done, and picked up 120 stitches for the body. I reduced the number of repeats of the waistband pattern, because there was a lot of feedback on Ravelry that it was a bit too ruffly as written, so I'm hoping that this will lie flat.

I've also been working on a spinning swatch of my Shetland Fleece. I wanted to see how long it would take me to get from raw fleece to yarn, and how much I would lose. I started with 35g of raw fleece, and after washing and carding, ended up with 24g of rolags.

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This was my first time using the hand carders I got for Christmas, so it took a bit of getting used to but it seemed to work in the end.

I then spun up two singles and plied them, ending up with 20g of finished yarn (and ~4g of left over single)

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The finished yarn is around about aran weight, and I was hoping for DK, but I've got a bit of single to compare to when I spin the rest, so hopefully I can make it that little bit thinner. But it seems like it will make a really warm, cozy jumper, which is what I'm eventually aiming for.

And then just for fun, here's a rainbow of hand knit socks! These are all the socks that I've made for myself, more than enough for one every day of the week...

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Needs more yellow and orange don't you think? I may need to cast on some more...

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Sunday, 4 August 2013

Third Year of Projects Week 5

I've got quite a few projects to share this week. The first was the successful conclusion of all my spinning experiments last week

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This is 15 skeins of different yarns, some dyed with Wilton's Icing Dye and some with Colourfast All-in-one Ultramarine. 8 of these skeins started as the same colour of greeny-turquoise, the dark blue on the right was yellow, and the middle skeins are variegated sock yarn overdyed with blue to make them fit into my colour scheme. All of them are going to become hexipuffs, and I've already started knitting with one of the sock yarns (the stripy blue in the picture below). I tried different methods include using different concentrations of the same dye, and tying the skein in knots to get 15 different skeins, all of which will eventually all become little puffs.

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This is this weeks supply of hexipuffs, the blanket is going well, I have about 40 puffs now, only 344 to go...

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I also found four 50cm strands of art yarn hanging around in my stash box when sorting to try and fit everything in. (Yes everything fits, except the stuff that’s in the other box, and the for sale bag, and the baby yarn bag, and the stuff for my next project, ooh and that random skein I found lying around…..) So I decided to play with my spinning wheel and see what I could do it. I tried deconstructing it, drafting and respinning it, then practised Andean plying to get a barber pole effect. And I love it! It’s only 22 yards, but it’s a pretty 22 yards.

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I have also finished Tubby, after a marathon bubble knitting session, followed by 50 (FIFTY!) french knots for bubble eyes. I finished this about about 1am, as I decided I wasn't going to bed until it was finished!

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I've also started Arielle, but not got very far yet! Can you tell what it is yet?

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And final yarny goodness. I got out my lovely Shetland fleece to have a look at. It seems to be really good quality, and I'm planning to have a go at washing and carding some of it to see how long it will take me to do the whole lot.

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I'm currently at my parents' for the weekend, as my consultant is on holiday next week, so I get almost a week off placement. I have an hour lecture on both Wednesday and Thursday, but that's all I have to do, so I though I'd take the opportunity to go see the family, since Connor has work experience in Leeds this week, so I could give him a lift. I also got to see my god-daughter, who has grown so much! I love seeing her, and we were a team playing bingo and won, though I can't guarantee we won since she kept marking off numbers when I wasn't looking. She's got really chatty now!

Then today, my Mum finally got her birthday present, doing some laps in a Lamborghini. It was hilarious because they had to get the booster seat that was there for the small children who were having rides in a race car, as she couldn't see over the steering wheel!

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I also got a lovely gift in the post this week. I'm doing some sewing and blocking for a lady on Ravelry who is sending two shawls to her nephew's new baby, and she sent me my very first pair of hand knit socks that I didn't knit myself! I'm so excited, no one ever knits for me!

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I'm going to knit and relax for the rest of the week, until I start a next placement a week on Monday, it's going to be lovely!

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