Wednesday, 23 July 2014

June Knitting

OK, so admittedly this post is a little late. I'm actually closer to posting July's projects! But, I've been without internet access for two weeks - which for a blogger, online shop owner and general Netflix junkie like me - is HORRIBLE.

But, let's not dwell too much on that, and we can focus instead on some lovely, scrummy knitting.

Tyrian was my main project - I really feel like I invested a lot of time, love and beading into it. In fact, I've spoken about it so much on the blog you're probably sick of seeing it! So I'll keep it brief and tell you I loved knitting it, I hated blocking it, but I ADORE the finished project.

I completed the Stormborn socks - sometimes when knitting socks for my husband I really curse the fact that he is so tall - therefore has GIANT-BIG feet.  I'm still in love with the Spiceman pattern, and knitting it in yarn that I dyed myself made me so happy. I love how subtle the turquoise, green and blue blending is, and how the yellowy-gold is a nice bright pop.

I've been aware of the Leftie pattern for a while - and always found it quite similar to the Firebird that I knitting as part of the Ravellenic Games last year. Since I'm a fan of big shawls, I always preferred the Firebird. But then at Yarndale I saw a woman knitting a Leftie, and it was so beautiful in real life I just couldn't resist adding the pattern to my queue. I'm making it in a soft grey that I dyed, with the beautiful 18 colour rainbow from Fab Funky Fibres.

I suffered a bit of a knitting funk recently and just needed a small, quick, fun project to jerk me out of it. Biology 101 had been in my queue for a REALLY long time - as an animal scientist and knitter, how could I resist it?? The knitting was a breeze and then I had the most fun needle felting all the internal organs.  It felt somewhat sadistic stabbing frog livers and lungs with needles - but I am really happy with the result.

Stoney Brook Top really caught my eye when Holla Knits released it. I couldn't stop imagining it in a beautiful hot, summery pink. I decided to cast off my fears of garment knitting and got stuck in. I got horrifically stuck - but I was given some really indepth advice by a lovely, kind knitter on Ravelry. I have also stalled a bit recently as I need to block the top portion of the top, but it's been really stormy and wet here. Blocking inside is impossible for me, as I have an adventurous ginger cat who likes to eat pins.

Finally the Birding Cape. I can't tell you how much I LOVE this pattern. I also really love the yarn. And the combination - swoon. It was such a lovely knit, and I couldn't stop running the yarn through my fingers. It's Rowan Creative Focus Worsted that I snapped up in Hobbycraft when it was reduced to a really low price.  Not only do I love the texture, loftiness and softness of the yarn, but the colour is just gorgeous. I'm a huge purple fan - and this is the perfect purple to me.

Wednesday, 9 July 2014

Kelp Forest

A while ago I heard about a collection of knitting patterns inspired by the Harry Potter books - The Unofficial Harry Potter Knits. Being both a fan of the books/films and knowing that the patterns would have a slightly magical slant to them - I needed a copy!

It took me a while to track one down - but when I finally did, I was really pleased. The magazine was full to bursting with beautiful patterns - and to my eye, none so beautiful as Susannah IC's Mermaid's Song shawl.

I don't actually have much lace yarn in my collection, but I had a beautiful, soft 100% merino from Rosie's Moments in a lovely, earthy, mossy green which reminded me a bit of kelp.  I also had some Miyuki magatama beads in a white/grey mix, that reminded me of little raindrops that I bought during a previous bead binge. The perfect combination! I couldn't resist casting on.

You begin by knitting the cable, lace and beaded trim - which although it's slightly fiddly isn't hard to memorise. Or, it isn't if you don't try and watch The Vampire Diaries while doing it. In the end I was incredibly grateful for the fact I had remembered to put lifelines in my knitting after each repeat, because I think I pulled out my work 6 or 7 times. After the trim - I found the main body just flew by - and I pretty soon had an FO.

My only problem is blocking. I have steam blocked it a little to open up the stitches. But it needs blocking within an inch of it's life I think, and I just don't have the space to do that. It's perfectly wearable as a little shoulder shawlette. But, ideally I'd love to give it a nice, firm block to really enhance it's beauty.


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