Tuesday, 14 December 2010

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas

Dear Reader, it has been too long! Since I last spoke there has been mug painting at Create, Ilkley where I made a bowl. Photos have sadly gone AWOL, promise to tell you when I find them... I do have a nice photo of Ilkley though.

And then there was the snow.

I make that 7 inches of snow, which meant that I worked from home for a day. I hope a messy desk is the sign of a productive day!

I do also have a bit of a project update too; I've made another Gehry because I love it, so easy! Here it is in an early stage, now efficiently given away so can't put any photos up just in case!

Then there are the Cafe au Lait in hyacinth as I call it; I have decided that they are too big which is handy as I've run out of wool, so they're being ripped back and I might use the wool to turn my mind to a bit of pattern design when I finally stop for Christmas!! I love the existing pattern though, I have plans for it *cackle*

There is the ever-present bolero, hopefully to be done by Christmas - I think graduation on Thursday is vastly optimistic! - but I do have enough to cover both my breasts...

... and the bottom half of my shoulder blades!

I have a cheeky FO too - nothing special, just a garter stitch cowl and headband (the latter just because I had wool left, not actually worn it yet!)

And then there is my inbox, particularly poorly lit:

I should really stop adding photos to this, hope everyone's internets are still in one piece. In other news, work is going well though I am somewhat not really trying, Christmas prep is sending everything a little too close to chaos but it is all fun really. There are cards and presents and food but I'm obviously not showing any of that!! I do sadly have a sore back so I'm spending the evening hugging a hot water bottle.... mmmmm.... and tea....

Monday, 29 November 2010

Harrogate Knitting and Stitching Fair

Oh my gosh, it has been a long time since I wrote this! Things at work have been picking up pace, things at home are still a little mad, but all has ceased this weekend. For today, I am ill. And it may be just a cold with some not fun achy aspects, the snow is just the prefect excuse to stay in.

There is much news on the crafty front. On Friday, I played hookey from work and went to Harrogate Knitting and Stitching Fair, with the lovely Steph. There was so much I wanted, but I miraculously kept to budget and got some lovely things in the process.

1. Some little cross-stitch kits, because cross-stitching got me into craft, they are quick and easy, and I am a sucker for cute little things.

2. Zauberball, in the colours admired by my former housemate. Will almost certainly become an Ishbel for her birthday in March. I'm really looking forward to it, but I feared making my first shawl for someone else. Hence....

3. Lang Jawoll Magic Superwash in green, which I saw and thought 'Simple City'; though the pattern was intended for a Zauberball, I've been wanting to do it for ages but thinking the colours can go a little dark and rainbow is a little mad for me. So I might do it with this, or I might go to my LYS and think about getting another Zauberball for it. While still in this quandry, I encountered...

4. Artisan Yarns, while their website is lacking stock at the moment, had a lovely stall full of sock yarn, including the fab lavendar's dilly. The winter light coming through my window doesn't really do it justice. I told myself, 'I'll make a practice Ishbel for myself, before cracking on with the one for March...'. Total Deviation From The Plan. But then, we went downstairs...

5. A full-length needle roll, just like I'd been dreaming about all these months! I feel so sorry for my poor well-loved straight needles, wrapped in elastic bands and shoved in a carrier bag, in the depths of my knitting bag. Now they have a lovely new home!! The shop can be found here, and all the fabrics make me drool a little...

So none too shabby! Also, this was the weekend of the mug-painting trip to Create in Ilkley, and of course I should tell you what's actually on my needles, but I will save those for another day!

Monday, 25 October 2010

Roll up for the magical mystery tour...

So, this post may be a little late. It has been a horrifically busy week, if a little Piglety (Lots of 'so much to do, so little time!' and 'I'm late! I'm late!'). I have managed to take some halfway decent knitting photos, though depressingly mainly at work. A couple of presents I will put on soon enough, but a proper photo of Gherty,

some mittlets for my Mum, using a pattern I made for myself:

some mittlets for me which may turn into flip-top mitts as the weather gets colder

So far, so normal. Generally a blue phase I'll admit, and this made me think: perhaps in a little more than knitting? However, languishing in such things is not allowed, so I decided to turn the corner, took hold of my knitting needles and dove headfirst into a pile of yarn:

to make my very first garment - a bolero from Let's Knit - September called Falling Leaves. Not got hugely far but given that I only decided to make it on Wednesday I thought it wasn't too bad. I love the colour too, it's just what I need to get me out of my funk. I may have made a couple of bits for a friend with the same yarn, and fallen for it! My shoddy lighting does not do it justice:

And what brought about the Carpe Diem moment? The final turn in the road: my exciting acquisition from my Auntie Maggie, formerly owned by my Auntie Min, and very much beloved by all my [female] relatives.

And boy, do I not know what I'm doing with it! However, it is lovingly set up on [the surface formerly known as] my desk, and I keep taking the lid off for peaks. I can almost hear it aching to be used, but it's so pretty and has so much history that at the moment, I am happy just to look at it.

Wednesday, 13 October 2010

I remember when I lost my mind...

Things have been a little quiet on the blogging front, haven't they? I've been hard trying to turn my life into organised chaos (rather than the standard chaos it's in at the moment), and after a philosophical evening (possibly induced by red wine...) decided that life = chaos, and I should stop. In theory. I may have pulled a loooong day at work today, but it's so I can leave early tomorrow. And I mean early - girly lunch and a maintee at the theatre :)

I think I did go a bit bonkers last month, so thanks for reading the Blog of a Crazy Lady, things much better now. I am my own in charge of my work, not the other way around. I'm managing to have a social life (and meet lovely new people, too!). I've got a housemate. I've got an income. Life is good.

The only problem now is: There's No Knitting! Seriously, I have made one pair of gloves in the last month. And they're a present so no photos yet. So the knitting plan is being formulated, now. Things on it include:
  • Interesting crimson and mustard mittlets, to match the mustard hat of some months ago. Sadly not enough of the mustard, cannot get hold of more. Fortunately helped out by Chantel and Steph in Ilkley.
  • Finishing off my uber-warm wrist warmers - knitted but not lined.
  • Coming up with something to knit for the boyf that's not a scarf, hat or gloves.
  • Coming up with something to knit my boy housemate.
  • Ishbel for my former housemate.
  • Simple City for me.
  • The dalek, which has totally ground to a halt lately.
I think it's in that order too. Awesome, there is a plan! Now to crack on with it - bring me my needles!!

PS. Well, indulge me: just one photo of the Brilliant Barcelona Break. Loved it, everyone should go. Especially in September for a week of lovely warm weather and beautiful blue sky.

Friday, 10 September 2010

Turn and Face the Strain

It would seem I have been dealing with thesis/ presentation/ living arrangement/ money stress by knitting rather a lot. I've made several presents which are not on here because you never know who may find this, but here are the best bits of what I've made for me.

So my favourite projects that I've finished lately are my Gehry hat, made with Sirdar Escape Chunky, bought for me by my lovely former housemate. I adapted the pattern a bit, as I have a small head but like floppy hats, so instead of doing the initial rib in 5.5mm and the rest in 6.5mm, I swapped to 5mm and 7mm. And I think it turned out rather well (though it was mainly the lovely lovely yarn!), and it's really easy, only took me a weekend (when I was also writing that presentation).

I've also done my matching-ish wavy mits - the pattern was also free on Ravelry, and it's called Hands of Blue. I used Sirdar Snuggly DK as I'm having a phase of eczema between my fingers :( It was a bit of a mission but I'm really pleased with the result. I have a great need for such things, as I spend a lot of my days sitting at a computer at work and I find my hands get a little chilly, and at home of an evening I'm usually on the computer of knitting, which have the same problems. I've done a few similar things but these were a challenge for me so I'm a little bit proud of myself.

And now for the one you've all been waiting for....

(Apologies for the desk mess, this was taken very near the end of the Masters...)
I've been having a break from it as I was on a bit of a mission with it, but had another session this week. I need to do the appendages, stuff it and do the base, but I'm getting into all sorts of mess doing the i-cord for the `eye', so I'm hoping for some help soon :S

I'll probably blog about presents soon, there are a spate of birthdays coming up including some of my little cousins so hopefully I can take photos then (I feel a bit weird wearing other people's presents, even if it is just for a photo). And the next project? Glittens! For me - because I'm designing the pattern myself and my friend wants some, I thought it best to have a dry run first. Honest!!

Monday, 23 August 2010

All These Things That I've Done

So, it has been a good long while since my last post. I have been busy with work, sadly, but now things are in a definite lull. I am deeply loving relaxing, and am back into knitting. And getting on with Life Admin, which is getting a bit desperate!

Apart from horrid work, I have also had some fun. I have been buying things, 'cos it makes me feel better. Especially things in the Cath Kidson sale like this spotty knitting bag - half price! - and I'm definitely keeping this one for me. On the grounds that it's waterproof.

I have also bought a couple of bits for one of my friends, who is in need of some knitting guidance. A knitting bag that was reduced, and the piggy stitch markers are courtesy of Steph.

I also got some for my birthday, I thought the apples were soooo cute! They have already proved themselves really really useful. They also cheer me up and inspire me to carry on, as well as reminding me about my progress. Thanks Steph!

I did also get the main birthday present from my parents; my lovely metal KnitPro interchangeables, which I LOVE!! They've already been put to much good use. Though the case they come in is a little cheap and nasty, and I would like to make one for myself, though I think my mum is still recovering from making the project bags!

And that's just the knitting stuff! There have also been some purchases of other sorts, though my favourite two have been my Stress Half Pint (like a stress ball) and Sheep Bag, both from Dublin over the weekend. I got away properly and now feel well rested and fed - the cake & Guinness diet definitely agrees with me!

I will give a bit more of an update about what's on my needles at some point...

Thursday, 27 May 2010

The Only Way Is Up!

After a week of being in a funk - and before you ask, it is actually defined in the Google dictionary as a state of nervous depression - I seem to be on the way out. And how do I know this? I feel like knitting again! Despite a false start, I think I will crack on with my latest and favouritest project: Hands of Blue Wavy Fingerless Gloves. It ain't worth taking a photo of them yet, I only ripped them back 5 mins ago, but I am looking forward to them - especially as I'll get to keep them! Future projects include the Knitted Dalek, now definitely going to be red and dark grey, and a Grace Lace Beret for an old friend in an excellent shade of mustard yellow.

And just to remind me what got me out of the work-induced funk? Asking for help with the work, of course! It may have helped that the lecturer for the course reminds me a little too much of various Chinese characters in fairly old and fairly racist comedy shows. I feel an evening of knitting and Monty Python coming on :)