Thursday, 21 February 2013

Leftie Scarf

All other knitting projects have been put on hold for now and my spinning wheel lies untouched and neglected.

The reason?

A few weeks ago I started knitting a Leftie scarf.  I picked it up every few days to do another stripe and leaf, but wasn't overly worried about getting on with it.  Then I started thinking.  The scarf's for my mother.  The intention was to give it to her on her birthday - which is 9 May, hence the 'no rush' mentality.  However, a scarf given in May isn't going to get worn much before September or October.  However, Mothering Sunday is 10 March - just over two weeks away.  A scarf given in March is probably going to get a bit of wear before the weather hopefully turns nicer and Spring arrives.

That gives me just over two weeks to get this scarf knitted, sew in the ends and then soak and block it.

That's quite a lot of knitting - it's 4ply yarn (King Cole Merino Blend 4ply) on 2.5mm needles.  All garter stitch - fortunately I like garter stitch.

So far I've done 16 leaves.

I need to do at least another 16 leaves - and the scarf gets wider the more you knit (+7 stitches each stripe & leaf repeat).

I'd better get on with it.  Fortunately, I can knit and read or watch TV at the same time (especially when it's garter stitch) and only need to look when I'm knitting a leaf or doing a kfb increase).

Here it is so far:

And here's photo of the leaves against what's left of the first ball of navy blue - so you can see the cream leaf as well as the pink ones.

It's going to match the Lucy Cloche hat I made for my Mum at Christmas.  This one - King Cole do the same colours in the DK merino as they do in the 4ply:

Mum wore her hat to her reading group last week and got several complimentary comments from the other ladies.  I have to say that it does suit her.

I'm off now to make lunch for DD2 who is badgering me and then I'll be popping out to the shop to get a few bits before making some more soup.  I've made some celery soup this morning and as I've got several red peppers (my veg box seems to have had celery and red peppers for the last couple of weeks) I'm going to roast some with some tomatoes and onion and then soupify them.  But I need more tomatoes to do that - and I forgot to buy garlic the last time I went shopping.

Monday, 18 February 2013

Spring half-term holidays.....

..... and typically, I woke up with a thick head and troublesome sinuses, aka A Cold.  Not really what I wanted when I've got DD2 to keep amused and occupied for a week.

Today has been given over to letting DD2 watch CBeebies (or have it on in the background), draw lots and lots of pictures, not minding when she screws up the paper and drops it on the floor, making and icing some biscuits (she licked off the icing and gave the biscuit to the dog).

I had thought I might get in some spinning, but my eyes are feeling a bit sore, so I haven't done any (yet) today.  I also thought I might get some more of my current pair of socks done, but sore eyes + 2.25mm needles aren't a good match.  Instead, during the times that DD2 has occupied herself, I've read some of my book (hurrah for e-readers meaning you can make the text bigger) and knitted round and round the second sleeve of my cotton sweater with a pause every ten rows to make the required decreases.

I've also managed to deal with the dishwasher and put on a load of laundry - a load which I don't think is going to require any ironing as it's mainly t-shirts which can be smoothed flat.  DD2 did do a second load of laundry for me - but that was clean tea-towels from the drawer in the kitchen.  Oh well!

As the weather's a bit brighter today and there was ok-ish light coming through the glass panel in the front door (our hall's painted white and the carpet's beige so it's quite light there anyway) I took the opportunity of snapping some photos of my finished Sheepheid hat.


Brim/bottom part:

The whole hat, modelled over a mixing bowl:

In general, I'm pleased with it.  It's come out a bit bigger than I expected (probably tension-related - I hold up my hands and admit I didn't check it) but DD1 has very thick hair, so it actually fits her quite well.

I've still got yarn left over, but not enough to make another one the same.  I'll weigh the yarn and see if I think I've got enough to use the same pattern, but just do simple stripes instead.  I'll let you know!

Wednesday, 13 February 2013

Simple Summer Tweed sweater

I've got several WIPs at the moment.  Here's one I started on Saturday:

The pattern is the Simple Summer Tweed V-Neck sweater which as you've probably guessed from the photo is a top-down raglan sweater.  The yarn is some RYC Cotton Jeans in the colour Canvas, which is a neutral greyish-beige.  I bought the yarn from Kemps - for something silly like 99p per balls.  The tension for the pattern said 16 sts per 4 inches which I got with 5mm needles, but thought was a bit floppy, so I've gone down to a 4.5mm needle and am doing the large size instead of the medium.  The thing that's so good about a top-down sweater like this one is that if you need to, you can do a few extra increases (or fewer) and add in some plain rounds before dividing for the sleeves to get a good fit.  I'm hoping this will be one of those casual sweaters that works with a lot of things in my wardrobe through spring and early summer (probably the whole of the summer if this year's weather is anything like that of the last few years).

As this is now just rounds and rounds of knit stitches as I work down the sleeves, with the occasional decrease to taper them slightly, it's good tv or book-reading knitting.

I divided for the sleeves yesterday afternoon and then knitted the body until I'd got to the end of the ball of yarn I was using.  Then I put the body stitches on some waste yarn to hold them, popped it over my head to check the fit and then started on the first sleeve.  By doing the sleeves first, I'll know how much yarn I've got available to do the rest of the body and the neck band.  The sleeves and hem of the sweater don't have any bands - it's just casting off and letting the fabric roll a bit (I think - I haven't read it through properly).

I also finished DD1's Sheep Heid hat on Monday and it was blocked and dried overnight.  I did try to get a decent-looking photo yesterday morning once she'd put it on, but she got a sudden attack of the teenage grumps and this is the best I could do:

I'll get it back from her this afternoon when she gets home from school and see if I can do better.  After all the work I put into it, never mind the many ends that needed to be sewn in, I think some better photos are required.

I do have a couple of other things on the needles, but I'll show you those next time - my camera battery needs charging for a start.