Wednesday, December 31, 2008

What a difference a year makes

Last New Year's Eve in Melbourne the temperature didn't drop below 30 degrees until after midnight. Tonight, Felix and I are off to celebrate Hogmaney in Edinburgh with the expected temperature of -4. Felix is looking forward to any excuse that allows him to wear his Ni beanie.

I've been working on my nana's birthday shawl since Saturday night and I plan to get up to the border rows today, which is pretty great considering I added a repeat.

I'm pretty happy with the progress I've been making.

Looking back, this has been a fantastic year for my knitting. I've been very prolific, 40 finished items (yes I know it said #39, but I helped Jade knit a scarf so I'm counting that as well) although a lot of them were beanies. For Felix.

I plan to challenge myself further next year. Thanks to Bells and her Long Lacy Summer, I've become a lace addict. The fun of watching something that looks like uncooked 2 minute noodles become art as soon as you drop it in water and block it? Indescribable.

That's why I've already planned next year's first knit.

Insanity, thy name is "Andrea".

Have a great New Year's Eve, and I'll catch you all next year.

Finished Objects 2008


Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Finished Objects 2008 - #37, #38 and #39

Saturday was a daemon day for knitting (doesn't "daemon" look cooler than "demon"?). I finished my cleaning up bright and early and settled down to block my Entrelac Socks and see what else I could finish.

While the socks were drying I finished off a moss stitch washcloth. No pictures, because it put to good use a few hours later! Then I decided that I needed some plain fingerless gloves for walking around outside and knitting, so I whipped up some Jogging Gloves.

That took me past three episodes of "Dexter" and on to the beginning of a new shawl (yes, another one), this time Celtic Hearts again from Simple Knits. This is fast, so I'm hoping I can knock it off before the end of next week as that's when I'll need to post it to Australia for my nana's birthday.

Yesterday was another day of knitting in the afternoon, and I finished off my Entrelac Socks.

I am completely overwhelmed by these socks. They took two months of knitting here and there and they were worth it.

I knitted them while watching "History of Britain" in the mornings and "History of Scotland" in the afternoons. Lots of history and lots of knitting.

The part I'm most proud of is that I did all of my entrelac squares without turning the knitting. I purled backwards. I did a p2tog backwards! It's easier to purl backwards than knit backwards and it did help me speed things up.

The tassels make it.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Finished Objects 2008 - #35 and #36

Due to work commitments I've been far too busy to do anything. This is what happens when you volunteer to decorate the hostel. And make a gingerbread house.

And a winter village. And hand sew 12 felt stockings.


However, I did find time to finish my Nosferatu shawl.

This was a fabulously easy knit - just knit the plain/eyelet base until you think it's wide enough, then knit the lace pattern.

Not too much lace, but just enough to make it interesting. I think this still counts as a lace piece for the Long Lacy Summer - what do you think, Bells?

I completely stuffed up pinning out the fish tail. It's very full, and ripples, so I think I'll claim it as a design feature, rather than a flaw.

This will be my reading in bed/slobbing on the couch (in style)/wandering the moors looking for my lost love shawl. It has that kind of vibe.

Another delay to my posting and knitting was the hostel's Secret Santa lists. I picked the first name and got the uber-awesome Jade, who is a knitting convert. Couldn't have been easier.

A yarn zombie keyring, two packets of red string licorice to make 302 Calories and these.

Clafoutis Bedsocks. If they were any easier it'd be illegal. I made them in ten hours. TEN HOURS. Be warned - these are my new present staple...

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Yarnmas!

From the lovely climes of Scotland,

may your Christmas be filled with love, laughter, figgy pudding and fibre-related presents!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Insomniac knitting

So, it's 3:33am and I'm wide awake and sitting in the hostel dining room. I've spent an hour wathing the last episode of "The History of Scotland", and I'm still annoyed that they ended on James I. Boooo! I want Reformation, and the total collapse of the Scottish kingdom - blame Panama. Oh, and England. Technically. (See? Insomnia = waffling.)

Insomnia means I can knit while I watch tv on my laptop. My Nosferatu is blocking, so instead I've dedicated myself to finishing up my entrelac socks, resisting all urges to swatch for the One Skein Wonder using Noro Silk Garden. Why, yes, it did hurt to decide that - how did you know?

However, it looks like I'll actually have these socks finished up by Monday night (current rate continuing). My apologies for the awful picture - my camera is up in our room, and I decided to test out my webcam.

Still nice socks, though.

Saturday, December 06, 2008

Finished Objects 2008 - #34

Meet The CARdigan.

So called because I knitted every piece of it while I was driving. The back, two front, sleeves and even the mega-huge hood - all while driving.

Feel free to call me irresponsible. I care not. I can drive and knit - hell, I can change gears and cable! The doubters are just jealous because they didn't think of it first.

Anyone who has driven next to the 'G at 6:10 on a Friday night will understand. 20 minutes to drive 200 metres is incredibly frustrating. This project made it less so.

Besides, I'm too far away to prosecute now!

I started this last September and almost finished it the morning of our departure, so recently when my mum insisted on sending me parcels for my birthday she included my CARdigan, with it's one, sad little side seam to sew up (see? Almost finished!). In half an hour last night I finished it up and now refuse to take it off.

The yarn was Patons Caressa DK and it was $2 a ball in the Cleggs mid-year sale last year. I was planning to dye it but I've changed my mind. I think I like it just the way it is.

In other knitting news, I went on a mild shopping binge for my birthday. Just patterns with a small teensy bit of yarn too.

I bought Habitat,

the Celtic Heart Shawl,

the One Skein Wonder pattern,

and the best one yet - Garden Shawl. I must be insane.

I asked Felix to pick between this pattern and another, and the response was "That one looks harder. Get that one." The man knows me too well.

The order is from The Wooly Workshop, and the owner Gill called the very next day to talk about the Jaggerspun Zephyr I ordered to knit this creation from, and the lack of matching dye lots, so it's delayed for two weeks. On the other hand, I've just found myself a local enabler!