Tag Archives | yarn

Swatch for Springshawlsurprice knitalong!

I’m taking part in my first knitalong in the spring, as a result of being on Ravelry and finding out what’s out there!  I have knitted very little lace but I did knit a Shetland ringshawl a couple of decades ago (it took me a few years to finish it but I eventually did!).  I didn’t know about what a difference blocking made until I read Stitch ‘n’ Bitch Handbook by Debbie Stoller so I have never blocked it, but I plan to very shortly and will post a picture of it when I do.    When one of my sons was dedicated as a baby, I wrapped him in it.  Right, now I’ve written it, nag me till I do it!!

Anyway, for the knitalong we have just been given a swatch to do to get used to knitting with our chosen yarn and to ensure the edges are elastic enough.  I’m using Jaggerspun Zephyr 2/18 laceweight wool/silk in claret:

Jaggerspun Zephyr laceweight yarn

Hopefully this will be enough!!!!

Here is my swatch:

swatch in burgundy yarn 

I’m glad I had this practice because it took quite a lot of getting used to, and the needles I used were very slippery.  I’m going to order some special lace knitting needles by Addi which apparently make it easier.

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Ravelry – I’m in!

A new feature on the sidebar is a link to Ravelry! Ravelry is a fairly new – and definitely new to me – site where you can upload all your knitting projects, stash, etc, and find yarn and patterns and stuff like that. So if you’ve got some yarn and you don’t know what to do with it, you can search for what other people have made with it. Entry is by invitation only at the moment so if you fancy it, add your name to the waiting list! My invite came this week so I’ve been starting to explore it and add my stuff. I am looking forward to delving deeper into it because I’ve got a few yarns which I’d like ideas on what to make. I’m not very good at working out how to change yarns from what a pattern says to what I have in my stash! If you’re a member of Ravelry already, you can see my project pages here.

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A bit of knitting

I haven’t been doing much blogging recently but I have been using my hands.  I bought this gorgeous Uruguayan yarn from Rio de la Plata via the online coop of which I am a member. 

red Rio de la Plata yarn

It is a bit darker than this but that may be my laptop monitor.  I decided to use some of it to make a sweater and have been getting on with it like a house on fire.  It is from the book Fitted Knits by Stephanie Japel and has a long ribbed section at the bottom to make it fit more snugly.  This is where I was a couple of days ago:

red sweater being knitted

I have now finished the ribbing and tried it on and decided to keep it sleeveless, so I have only got to finish the neckline and armholes.  I think it will be a bit hot as a jumper with sleeves and the yarn is quite bulky so I’m afraid sleeves will make me look too much like a Michelin Man! 

I have been experiencing a veritable boom in my knitting activity this past year.  This I attribute to two things – the gorgeous, yummy yarns available via this coop, and the wonderful podcasts which I have uploaded on to my Ipod Shuffle.  I have been working my way though the archives of Brenda Dayne’s Cast On – the music is just the thing to get a rhythm going!  I have got as far as No. 10 so far.   And Craft Cast with Alison Lee is another.  I found a couple of interviews with past contestants on Project Runway the other day, which are next on my current Ipod itinerary to listen to.  Alison has a great variety of interviewees – I have listened to an author, someone who prints her own books (and artwork) on a letterpress printer (that one was so inspiring I listened to it twice), a jewellery maker, etc etc.

I have also been working through the new book by Leslie Morgan, Claire Benn and Jane Dunnewold, called Finding your own Visual Language.  They have lots of exercises to do – I’ve only taken a few photos of those so far, so when I’ve done a few more I’ll write a post about what I’ve done.  And the house has been surrounded by scaffolding for the last couple of weeks and we have had builders patching up various holes and crevices where the roof has been leaking over the last few years, so hopefully my studio won’t have to be half covered with plastic next winter!  So far we have had a skylight replaced with a Velux window, the west wall painted with waterproofing, various bricks pointed, the bath stones on our coping (I think that is the word) taken up and repaired or slates put underneath and a myriad other things which I’ve forgotten about.    Nearly finished now, though!  Hurray!

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Avon Valley Country Park

A few weeks ago I went with the kids on a church outing to Avon Valley Country Park. They had great fun down these scary slides:

red scary slide

while I sat in the cafe and chatted and drank tea.

There are a lot of animals there, including Jacob and Soay sheep and angora goats. After a hairy boat ride where DS1 and DS2 rowed me around (an adult was required otherwise I would have foregone the pleasure), I went and regained my calm by having a walk around to look at the animals. The kids meanwhile hared off to the go-karts…

Jacob sheep:

black/brown and white Jacob sheep

Soay sheep (had to crop this photo because they wouldn’t come any closer!):

soay sheep

Angora goats – this little one was very obliging…

angora goat standing under tree trunk

There was a tiny little kid there as well:

angora kid

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