Monday, 30 March 2009

My word I have actually cracked it


I have finally found a help site that can teach my obstinate brain the basic mechanics of crochet. I am not sure how I got there, some sort of Divine intervention possibly but I found Hook and Needles lurking on the web. I had been trying to teach myself for ages as I thought "I can knit. I can spin. Why can't I crochet?" Anyway I found this tutorial, which led to this one and then to this one and finally I have found the grail of amigurumi projects. Nibbler

To start with though, I'm just taking it easy
This was my first attempt, just a simple back and forth single (in the UK double) crochet. For my to sort out my tension and how to hold the hook and yarn.
From GlamGirl Knits

Now I'm not the sort of person who would knit 1000 scarves before moving onto trickier knitting patterns so I'd be blowed if I was going to crochet 100 mats - apart from anything else what do you do with them? Anyway I had a hunt through the magic of the Ravelry pattern search and came up with the pattern for an Easy Peasy Mouse
From GlamGirl Knits

I am so very proud

Thursday, 26 March 2009

Blue Bag

I am bad - I completely forgot my friend's birthday so was hunting around for a quicky project that I could knit in a jiffy and so settled on the One Skein Felted Purse by Flo Burdick from One Skein Wonders or my Blue Bag.

I had some Cascade Wool 220 in a bright turquoise colour and some bluey purpley greeny Freedom Spirit by Twilleys which I know felt beautifully so I went for it and produced this little beauty.
From GlamGirl Knits

The flower is just a random felted fancy as the pattern on the original pattern is a bit of a bore as there is far too much casting off to worry about. Anyway they went through the washing machine and came out like this.
From GlamGirl Knits

I added a tab so I can sew on a popper for the closure, the original pattern has a magnetic button but I couldn't find any. I shall post it off at the weekend and hope that she likes the jewel bright colours.

Wednesday, 25 March 2009

40 Minute Panties

So this is not a joke but how many of you have 40 minutes panties or knickers? I have. You all know what I mean by 40 minute panties. It's that lovely pair of knickers that you have. They feel soft and are snug to wear, they might have a flash of laciness and are oh so sexy. They hold the bits back that need it and they make you feel fabulous.

For about 40 minutes.

Then all you want to do is get them off. The first signs will be when you are on public transport and helpless. They start to magically shrink on you. Instead of holding back your belly they slide under the bulge and you are left feeling flabby instead of sleek. Or sometimes they just start to wander. For me, usually it's that they start to wander up. I am left with that oh so elegant look of having to reach behind and tug them from my arse-crack surreptitiously. Usually it involves a trip to the bathroom with some frantic tugging and settling them on my hips with the threats that they are not to ride up again. They behave for a few minutes then get bored and have to start wandering again.

I think it's because they love the attention. They absolutely love to be the centre of attention. When you are in the shop looking to buy, they are coy but pert with it: they know you want them and are playing hard to get. Then when you succumb they are still soft and gentle, you might get them out and carress them waiting for that special day when you can wear them for the first time.

So the day arrives and you put them on all proud and strutty in your lovely panties and you forget that you are wearing them because they are so perfect. Then after 40 minutes . . .

Tuesday, 24 March 2009

Not good

On Thursday my computer died - well not completely dead, it just wouldn't start up. I think I might have got a killer bug but won't know for certain until the guys from the university computer help place get in touch.

So the truly stupid thing that I realised as the system was crashing, was that I probably have NONE of it backed up. Nothing really, so all of my photos, my random musings, my ebay turbo lister, everything might well have gone. What a dope I am. To make things even worse, I hassled my sister to get an external as she is a great photographer and has thousands of images on her flakey machine. And she got one, but I didn't. In the word of that great philosopher "DOH!!!"

So I beg you, I implore you, I plead with you, I pray you, I entreat you, I beseech you that YOU make sure that all your important documents, and that includes your photos and random crap are all backed up onto spare discs and even an external hard drive if you can afford it. Hell, even a few memory sticks would do.

Monday, 16 March 2009

Lizard Ridge Blanket

Just a quicky.
From GlamGirl Knits

It's growing and geeting bigger and I still love knitting it. I have learnt to knit backwards, not tinking but instead of turning the work after the short rows I now reverse knit the stitches. It is making it so much easier and quicker. I sort of found it out myself and then looked on the pattern page and found this link on how to knit in reverse.

Go on, try it - it's easier than it sounds.

Sunday, 15 March 2009

What a week!

I am, currently, an archaeologist. It's a job that I find mostly interesting and have stuck at the longest so far. However, the form of archaeology that I do isn't the Time Team stuff. This is my profession and I am more likely to be working on a construction site than not. Commercial archaeology in the UK is intimately tied to the construction industry and since that has died a death, archaeology is beginning to suffer too.

Well on Friday I was offically told that I would be made redundant on at the beginnig of June. And it was a shock but not a surprise. The company I work for has been trying to find work but there just isn't any so I completely understand the need to shed staff if they are going to survive. They are a business and will have to work hard in the next months to avert more job losses.

So there you have it. I have become a statistic of the credit crunch but am already looking for work. As I said there's not much in archaeology but I have office skills, and project management skills so who knows where it will all lead. I am also going to make a bigger effort to start selling things on etsy and folksy and de wanda and artfire and the other crafty websites. I am also going to build a website for me - that will have some of my photos and craft stuff on as well to see if I can generate some interest in what I do.

Friday, 6 March 2009

My Stash and UFOs

I am almost embarrassed about my yarn stash. I have listed on Ravelry over 100 entries but I have more to add. I am equally embarrassed about my unfinished projects that are scattered about the place too. I need to get a bit more organised and actually start using up the stuff that I do have and the project that I have started. So I have a plan . . . (I always have a plan)

From now on I will do a maximum of 4 projects at a time.

A small thing that I can take on the bus and do to and fro work. This would probably count as something like socks, mittens/gloves things in that general category. Basically anything portable and not too complicated.

Then I shall have a garment on the go. This can be an adult or child thing - anything like a sweater, skirt, dress. You catch me drift. This will be knitted at home so can involve complicated instructions or loads of colours.

Then there will be the long, long term project - the blankets or afghans, bedcovers, carpets. huge things that can get pretty boring if you are only knitting them and only them day in, day out.

And my final project group will be the frippery stuff, the things that I see and go "Oohhh" then pick up yarn and pins and start straight away.

The stuff to start with will be stash busted - but it might produce some interesting colour ways as mostly I don't have enough of a single yarn to knit an entire garment. But I have enough to be able to jig things around a bit.

First though I'm going to start with the project I have hidden around the house. Hence starting the BFF socks again (small thing for the bus). This afternoon I dragged out my Lizard Ridge knitted from JC Brett Chunky Marble (long, long term project), I'll hunt down the Topsecret sweater I start last year and almost finished but didn't quite (garment) but until I get rid of all my WIP I shall not start a frippery.

Tuesday, 3 March 2009

Starting Again

A while back in the mists of first gettting back into knitting I started a on BFF socks by Cookie A. They were started in Knit Picks Dancing and I really enjoyed knitting the first one. But I got sidetracked by sock knitting battles and I put away my stretchy sock for another day.

Well that day has come. As part of my continuing battle against my UFOs I dragged the yarn out and started again. One of the reasons for putting them aside was because they were too stretchy and I kept meaning to either knit a smaller size or do them on a smaller needle. I have taken the smaller needle option. They are now being knitted on 2.25mm and hopefully I'll actually get a pair that I can wear.

I'm just knitting from the toe of the finished sock and I know the yarn is very crinkly but it's also very stretchy and it doesn't seem to matter. I started them on the way to work on the bus this morning and have the 1 inch of ribbing done already.

This is it before the act of frogging
BFF sock
Now it's just a slither of ribbing waiting to become a sock.

Finished at Last

I have actually managed to finish a decent (okay, baby) sized garment.

Ta-DAAAAA and here it is . . .
From GlamGirl Knits

It's a Pinwheel Sweater - which is free so even better.

The yarn is 7 Veljesta Raita by Novita (sorry for those that don't folow Raveley) ((Why not? It's free you know?)) and the pattern is really easy to get through. It's knitted in the round with gaps left for the sleeves which are then knitted down once the main part is finished.

The pluses are:
that it could be a really quick knit (I took so long because I got distracted) as I got the main part done in a few days
it's completely customisable as everything on it can be changed so you can make it in any size.
any weight of yarn can be used so would be get as a multi-coloured stash buster
I learnt to do a crochet provisional cast on for the sleeves and the edging is a great i-cord thingy so no casting off

The minuses?
I don't know anyone who has a baby that it would fit