Sunday, 19 August 2012
This took forever to knit as I kept picking it up and putting it down again and then when I'd planned to finish it on my maternity leave I had only the sleeve, button bands and making up to go and it was the night before my due date...well Abigail decided to scupper my plans and be one of 5% of babies born on her due date.
It has taken me the last 16 weeks to find the time to finish it off! Still it was done and fortunately it does still fit and will for a little while.
I may not have much knitting time but I have an adorable model!
Thursday, 31 May 2012
Wednesday, 25 April 2012
Welcome to the world Abigail Emily and well done for showing remarkable punctuality and joining me in being one of the 5%ish of babies born on their due date.
She arrived Tuesday evening weighing 7lbs 9oz and is the most perfect and precious little thing ever. I wonder if I'll find time to finish her cabled cardi before she's too big for it!
Monday, 23 April 2012
Anyone who knows me or who has read my blog before will know I am rather a lover of one colour in particular, I just can't get enough green. Pretty much any shade will do, I love it. It's not just in my knitting, my wardrobe also contains more than it's fair share of green and it's the colour we chose to paint the baby's room (fortunately my husband shares a fondness for the colour though perhaps not such a strong one as me). I did have to think if there were other colours that I tended to be drawn towards so I got out my sock and laceweight stash. Sock and laceweight yarn purchases tend to be my impulse buys so it's here where any clear preference for one colour would show the most. It did and it's not just green. It's a combination of green, purple and shades of blue that are tinged with green and purple.
Sunday, 22 April 2012
I want somewhere in between because I am still racing to get things finished before he or she does arrive. You'd think two weeks of maternity leave would mean all my knitting is finished up but it turns out that even when I'm not at work I still seem to have eleventy million things to do and knitting it still largely reserved for the evenings. Also my attention span hasn't made a reappearance so my knitting concentration levels just aren't there. Still, I'm getting there. First, the little plain stockinette cardigan knit in some Regia sock yarn is finished. Buttons were purchased and I'm very pleased with how it has turned out.
I also have one finished sock to match but have yet to cast on the second.
Also less finished but definitely getting there is the cabled cardigan. Whilst the back seemed to take an age to finish I actually flew through the left front and the first sleeve. I am hoping to finish the right front tomorrow and then knit the other sleeve and do the button bands. The pattern is for either a hooded or a collared cardigan, I'm going to go for a collar as I can't imagine the hood being that useful or staying up particularly well. Also I have higher chances of finishing the collared version!
This cardigan is actually 0-6 months size so I'm hoping will fit a little longer than the first two I knit which are both 0-3 but we'll see. I still have lots of baby yarn in my stash which I may donate to my mother along with some patterns and beg of some pretty little knits whilst I don't have time to knit any! We'll see though.
I have other good news, I found my button tin!
Hurrah! This means I have a choice of buttons for the little cabled cardigan when it's finished. I don't have a lot of choice as my button tin isn't exactly overflowing with buttons that go with the yarn I'm using but I do have two choices to go with. I am very fond of the little wooden buttons but at the same time think if I don't use the little white ducks I'm not sure what else I would use them on. Also Mr.NM is a great fan of the little white ducks so perhaps I'll use those because they're his favourite and as supportive as he is of my knitting habit he rarely expresses much of an opinion one way or another on my yarn and button choices! Decisions decisions...
So I'm racing to get the cardigan and second sock done, I expect to win so had better get cracking! I'm also going to give Knitting and Crochet Blog week a good go. I think that having something to focus on daily that is unrelated to wondering if the baby will come or not can only be a good thing and will be a distraction for me. I just need to attempt to engage my brain and be a bit creative which I'm not entirely sure I'm capable of! I'll give it my best shot though :)
Friday, 13 April 2012
Why is it not quite finished you ask? I mean it looks quite finished, the seams are all sewn, the neckband knit but something is missing. Something important.
Remember I moved house recently? Well my button tin (which I can't find a picture of, annoying as I was sure I had one, it's red with white polka dots on and came from Cath Kidston) has done a disappearing act in the move. All the boxes are unpacked, my yarn stash is all together, I have my WIP basket as well but no button tin. It's nowhere to be seen. ARGH. In an attempt to encourage a reappearance I ordered some more buttons from ebay but I am rather annoyed that I can't find my button in. So...no FO post yet, sorry.
Wednesday, 11 April 2012
Monday, 2 April 2012
I had a lovely weekend actually. I had expected the weather to be rubbish but the sun held on for two more days even if it was cooler than it had been during the week. I didn’t really get out and about but just having the sun streaming through the window and washing on the line was enough to please me.
We’re settling in to our new house now. All the furniture is in the right place and most of the boxes are unpacked apart from a couple in Mr NM’s office.
We’ve been quite fortunate as the house we bought has quite neutral decoration and so whilst there are things we might like to change over the next few years it’s nothing we can’t live with. The only room that really wasn’t neutral and that we wanted to change anyway was what is going to be the baby’s room. When we moved in it was painted lilac and as pretty as it was we didn’t want the baby’s room in lilac. For starters as much as I protest the idea that colours go with certain genders there is no denying the fact that lilac is a tad girly and we still don’t know whether baby monkey is a boy or a girl. More importantly than that though I’m not really big on pastel colours and wanted a bright and cheery baby’s room. This meant painting. There are still things to do with the room (the cot has yet to be delivered!) so I don’t have a full finished room picture to share, it remains a work in progress! I can share the colour we chose though…unsurprisingly we went with bright green!
I absolutely love it! It’s only on the one wall with the other three walls left white but I think if we’d done it all green it would have been a bit over the top. As it is it’s just enough colour and I’m delighted with it. We just need to finish sorting furniture, get my mum to adjust the curtains (they’re too long) and get all the things ready in there.
On Saturday evening our good friends came over which was lovely, we never really entertained in our old house. It was small and cramped and I hated the kitchen which was pretty much a cupboard and did not enthuse me to make much effort in the culinary department. We now have a much bigger kitchen (which I must take a picture of as I’m very pleased with it!) and a proper separate dining room to eat in. Anyway our friends visited, the brought beautiful flowers for me
and beer for Mr NM (no picture of that but it was bottles of real ale from Yorkshire based breweries) and in return I made a lasagne.
It was fantastic to have visitors. After dinner we played Settlers of Catan which I highly recommend if you’re a board game fan though important to note that it needs at least 3 players, sadly this means we have to rely on having visitors if we want to play it! (we’ve also got it on ipad though where the computer will fill in if you don’t have enough friends!) and then they went home very late.
Sunday involved a lie in to recover from the late night with friends and boring household tasks that had been ignored on Saturday. We also went to the supermarket where I picked up one of their little magazines which have recipes in. This inspired me to do some baking, my first attempt at baking with our new (to us, it was in the house when we bought it) electric fan oven…a bit of a change from the old gas cooker we had before! It went well though and I achieved mini egg cookies without burning them!
Wednesday, 21 March 2012
1. What's your greatest knitting achievement to date?
Hmmm...I'm not really sure. I'm pleased enough with myself for actually teaching myself to knit again years after my grandma first taught me as a little girl. Other than just being able to knit full stop I think my first adult garment was a big one. It took me ages but I did it and I think that's the moment when I felt like a real knitter...even if in reality there were probably more stitches in some of the socks I knit than in the cardigan!
2. Is there a knitting skill that you'd like to learn? I always say the same thing to this questions, it's always the same goal! I want to learn to knit colourwork. I've never done more than a tiny Christmas decoration and I really want to just get on with it. I have got a project started that involves colourwork but I'm still anxious about it. Silly really as I know I've done other knitting that a lot of people find more complicated such as lace.
3. Who is your favourite knitting designer?
I don't really have one. I've knit so many different things by all different designers and see merit in all of them. I think perhaps because I knit so many different things I may like what a designer does with hats but be less keen on their designs for shawls when they do both and as I don't focus on one type of knitting I don't find myself knitting all the patterns by one designer as a lot do either garments or socks or shawls. I like to keep it varied and try out patterns by all different designers.
4. What's your favourite 'easy knit' to make as a gift?
I'm a selfish knitter, I don't do knitted gifts! OK that's not entirely true but I don't have a go to pattern. If I am knitting a gift I try to make something I know the recipient will like and don't really worry about whether it's easy or not. I have given up knitting gifts for people who aren't suitably appreciative...they get something from a shop and I'm not ashamed of that! It's not worth my time and skill to knit for someone who wont love what I have knit.
5. What's your favourite film?
Just like with favourite knitting designers I don't have a favourite film as such. Mr.NM is an absolute film buff so we watch quite a lot of films but what I want to watch will depend on my mood. I do always enjoy watching Die Hard though, ridiculous action films are something I am very fond of!
6. What's your favourite season and why?
I love Spring. My favourite flowers are out (daffodils and tulips) and everything feels fresh and new. I enjoy the days getting progressively longer and the hope that the weather is going to get better. Everything feels like it has such great potential in the spring. Also it's our wedding anniversary (third one today in fact!) so that's also pretty special.
7. What's your number one tip for new bloggers?
Just have fun with it, it should be an enjoyable activity not one you get stressed over if you've gone a week and have nothing to write about. Also read other blogs for ideas if you're not sure what to blog about, they may give you some inspiration. I suppose that's two tips...I'm not very good at tips, I'm rather a rubbish blogger these days so not sure my advice is worth taking!
8. What was the first thing you ever knitted?
A neon orange acrylic garter stitch rectangle. I think it was intended to be a scarf but I had the attention span of a...well of a five year old (I think I was about 5) and I didn't get that far. I think I wanted to just be able to knit and to knit proper things without all the faff of having to learn!
9. What's your favourite 'comfort' meal?
Yorkshire puddings filled with thick beef stew and dumplings just like my grandma used to make for me, can't beat it! Actually Yorkshire puddings generally are pretty solid on the comfort food front.
10. Do you prefer circular needles or dpns?
It depends on what I'm knitting. I've started using magic loop a lot more for socks, particularly plain stockinette ones as I avoid ladders and can just shove them in my knitting bag with less fear they'll slip off the needles. I do still like dpns though and sometimes they're a better choice so I use them. I use circular needles instead of straights even for flat knitting though, I find them a lot easier to handle.
11. What posters did you have on your bedroom wall when you were a teenager?!
I didn't have posters on my wall until I went away to university when I was 18 and I had two, one was an Oscar Wilde quote (and for my shame I can't remember which one!) and the other was a Pulp poster (as in the band) which I believe is still on the wall in my old room at my mum's house as I put it up there when I moved back after university.
12. Bubble bath or shower?
Probably a bubble bath with a good book but I do like a nice hot shower, particularly if it's really powerful and leaves you feeling scrubbed thoroughly clean.
I wont tag anyone as I can't think of any questions to ask! If you have any more for me though pop them in the comments and I'll answer them.
I'm hoping that I will be back soon as we are now in our new house and I've finally taken up my needles again as knitting was very neglected during the move! Also our little family addition is due in 5 weeks and has already received some gorgeous knitted gifts so I'd like to share those.
Wednesday, 7 March 2012
I hope to be back soon to tell you all about our lovely new home though probably without any knitting to show.
Tuesday, 7 February 2012
On Sunday Mr.NM went out and took a picture of the snow in on our driveway, I once again stayed in where it was warm and snow-free!
Oh well, the wintery weather is excellent for boosting my urge to knit. Admittedly this urge has been to cast on new warming things for myself but I have resisted! I am continuing with finish or frog it, I'm determined. Another project that went on to the "finish it" pile was a little cardigan for Baby Monkey.
It's a Sirdar pattern knit in Sirdar Snuggly 4ply. My general preference for natural fibres doesn't necessarily go that well with baby things so this one will be machine washable. Also Sirdar Snuggly is rather lovely and soft anyway so it doesn't feel like squeaky acrylic. The only thing I didn't really think through with this pattern was the 4ply and all those cables, I decided my baby was worth it (of course!) but that's the back and it's knit over 88 stitches! If this was a heavier yarn and bigger needles 88 stitches would make a cardigan back for me never mind a baby! No wonder it seems to be going a bit slowly. Still, my baby is totally worth it. Also the smallest size is 0-6 months and I can already see it's going to be bigger than the baby cardigan I made at Christmas so it should fit for a little while. I do prefer bright colours on babies but did think that the light colour went well with the cable pattern for this.
Also some progress, the first of the socks for Mr.NM is finished, hurrah! As is always the case with plain stockinette socks once I picked it up again it whizzed along and was finished in no time at all.
Friday, 3 February 2012
Last night whilst MrNM was out playing 5-a-side football I picked it up again to see if I could make a bit more progress. Being lace knitting and in rather lovely laceweight yarn it does require a lot of attention (it also required the purchase of wooden tips after the pains of knitting the first border section with my usual metal knitpros!) and when MrNM is around we usually sit together chatting, possibly watching a film or TV episode and I have to stick to very simple knitting (like the socks for him, the first is finished and I didn't run out of the carefully weighed out 50g ball of yarn!). In his absence I could focus.
Wednesday, 1 February 2012
First to survive my decision and make it on to the "to finish" pile, a pair of socks I started for Mr.NM way back in September, got as far as the heel flap and gave up. Oops. They're just simple, plain, no messing around, stockinette socks. OK so they need to be a size 11 but even then the simplicity factor means they shouldn't take too long to finish. I am now a good way down the foot of the first sock and it's whizzing along.
Hopefully I should get some pictures later today of some projects that are not so lucky and are heading for a one way trip to the frog pond.
Tuesday, 24 January 2012
Enough of apologies though, everyone is busy sometimes and that's all there is to it!
What I did achieve at the weekend (between the napping and attempting to relax) was a finished pair of Podster Mitts, huzzah!
I LOVE them. They do the job perfectly, I can use my touch screen phone whilst keeping the rest of my hands warm and whilst we've not had a winter like last year it has been pretty nippy lately so my fingers are grateful.
I am considering a little button to secure the mitten top when wearing them as fingerless gloves, I have some lovely little wooden ones that would go just perfectly. I'm not sure though as they don't flap about particularly so I may just leave them as they are. I do love buttons though...
To my relief I had enough yarn, I even have a little left over but not much. It's lovely yarn and feels like it will be really hardwearing. I bought it at a lovely little shop called Create in Ilkley but for those without access to Ilkley the dyer has an Etsy shop as well. Not that I'm encouraging stash enhancement you understand, it's just in case you were wondering.
Needle sizes, pattern and all that jazz are on my Ravelry project page.
I am now being a very good girl and have gone back to my WIP pile, details on what I'm knitting from that will come at some point I'm sure.
Also for anyone interested (and I'm not sure whether anyone is) my other WIP is progressing very well and is now two thirds done!
Sunday, 15 January 2012
New year, new project. I just couldn't help myself.
I've wanted to knit myself a pair of Podster Gloves for ages, apparently the pattern was published in September 2009 and I suspect I've been eyeing them up since then. I just never really got round to it. Back in September 2009 I was still very much learning, had knit a pair of socks but was intimidated by the skills needed for the gloves. Instead of braving it I filed them away for future knitting. By the time I was at a point where the pattern didn't look remotely scary I had far too many other interesting things to knit!
I decided 2012 would be the year I'd knit them, get them done before Baby Monkey arrives and throws all my knitting plans out of the window. Also I did get an iPhone about a month ago so they seem a more useful item to have than ever. We'll ignore my "I'm never knitting gloves again" from when I finished the green gloves for my mum over Christmas, let's pretend that never happened.
I went in the stash, this is good, stash reduction! The yarn wasn't a particularly long term resident, purchased in December 2010.
It's Ba T'at sock yarn in Pheasant. Considering how well behaved I was on the yarn buying front in 2011 this may actually be my most recent sock yarn purchase, shocking. I'm not 100% on that though. Anyway it is lovely stuff, 100% merino and technically sport weight not sock yarn. It feels like it should be very hard wearing and I love the colours.
It's knitting up nicely and the pattern is very clear and easy to follow. I've actually progressed beyond what I have pictures of and am already knitting the fingers of the second glove but here are two progress shots of the first glove.
I knit the first glove but have saved knitting the mitten top part until I've finished the second glove for fear of running out of yarn. I should have enough but should and will are not the same thing! At least this way I'll definitely have a pair of fingerless gloves should I have yarn for the mitten tops.
I'll get on to the WIP pile soon, honest.
Sunday, 1 January 2012
I am terrible at sticking to resolutions so I don't make them but I'm OK with at least having knitting plans or hopes for the year. Obviously 2012 is going to be a bit different for me to other years as some time in late April or possibly early May a little person is going to arrive on the scene and I suspect they will be taking up most if not all of my knitting time, at least at first. That means my knitting plans for 2012 are actually only plans for the first 4 months of 2012, any knitting I achieve beyond that is a bonus.
1. Finish or frog - I ended 2011 with a pretty shameful number of WIPs, perhaps not compared to some people but it was still more than I'm comfortable with. They need to go, either to be finished or frogged. I must not end 2012 with any of these projects still lurking in my knitting basked, in fact I'd rather they were out of the basket or at least being worked on steadily before the end of February at the latest.
2. Colourwork - This came up last year and was ignored, I will not ignore it this year. I intend to complete one piece of colourwork knitting before the baby arrives just to prove to myself that I can do it and it's not really that scary.
3. Stashdown - I was pretty good at not buying new yarn last year, I must continue that. I still have a lot in my stash, more than enough. I should knit from it. This is not a complete ban on purchases but I must end 2012 with less yarn than I started with. I would count what I have to be sure but that's just too scary. Instead I'll just try to use as much of it as possible and not buy new if there is something suitable already stashed, there almost certainly will be something suitable already stashed! This is particularly important as we're hoping to move house soon and we are having to bring in lots of baby things so sacrifices must be made, not buying yarn is a pretty easy one when I could practically open my own shop anyway.
I think that's enough for 2012, I don't want to doom myself to failure and of course my biggest goal for the upcoming year is to have a healthy and happy baby and honestly nothing else really seems to matter much anymore.
I hope 2012 brings exciting things to everyone and is happier than 2011 which may have been exciting for me but which I also know was pretty sad generally for a lot of people and for the state of the world.