Tuesday, 7 February 2012

Winter came, let's hope it goes again soon!

My goodness has the temperature dropped around here lately. After having a mild winter so far it came as rather a shock! It was just bitter on Saturday morning and at about lunchtime the snow started, it then went on and on and on for the rest of the day. I'd rather hoped it would stop in the evening as I'd been invited to a party but it didn't. I had to give up on the party (as it was at the other side of the city and my car is not made for such conditions) and stay at home where it was warm.

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

Finish or frog it February 2

Another one for the "to finish" pile, my Lilac Leaf Shawl, started way back in September when everyone else was tempting me with their beautiful lace projects.  Unfortunately the beginning of September was also when baby NM was making his or her presence known by sapping me of all energy and enthusiasm to achieve anything more than constant napping and drinking orange juice!  Needless to say I got as far as knitting one of the lace borders then starting on the second before shoving the project in my knitting basket. 

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.

I needed to focus.  After this picture was taken (and promise me it will look better when it's blocked!) I got to the part with nupps.  At this point the blasted thing almost ended up in the "to frog" pile as I knit, tinked and re-knit the same two rows about four times before the nupps looked even vaguely not awful.  I considered not bothering but told myself I had left them out of the last shawl I knit that included them in the pattern, I would knit the blasted things on this one.  Anyway the nupp section is done for now, there are some more to come but I have about 300 nupp free rows to go before I get to that part!

Yes I am aware of the crochet hook method of knitting nupps and how it's supposed to be easier but I'm not a crocheter and could not for the life of me find a crochet hook anywhere last night!  I own a few but they appear to have hidden in protest as I almost never use them and when I do it's for such degrading business as picking up dropped stitches and untangling yarn instead of actual crochet.  It's a hard life being a crochet hook in my possession!

Wednesday, 1 February 2012

Finish or Frog It February

I am declaring this month Finish or Frog It February in the NorthernMonkey household. All those WIPs in my basket must be either finished (or well on their way to it) or frogged by the end of the month. I will NOT be casting on anything new unless I finish everything lucky enough to be put into the "to finish" pile. This is highly unlikely as I have rather let my WIPs build up and one of them is lace knitting.

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.