Saturday, April 29, 2006


I went on an Introduction to Photoshop course yesterday here - great fun. Here's my first attempt at a collage. (I'm hoping members of my family don't take offence at being called "things" and compared to a slice of cake ...)

I've decided that knitting socks with skinny, sharp little needles is not one of my favourite things. I admit this may be partly because at my advanced age my eyesight is not quite up to it (and I haven't stooped to getting reading glasses yet). Anyway I'm going to sell my beginners' sock kit on ebay. So there.

TC and I are going to Mudeford in Dorset for the weekend and I've promised not to take any knitting. Before we go I'm off to the sorting office to pick up a couple of parcels, at least one of which should be six single skeins of One Zero from Colinette, all in different colours - how exciting is that! But I realised I haven't read a book since I started knitting just after Christmas - apart from knitting books of course. I used to be an avid novel reader and I'm starting to miss it a bit so will perhaps catch up with Donna Leon as we lounge around here, having got a bargain here.

Thursday, April 27, 2006


I finished it at 11.30 on Tuesday night so did it in two evenings. I love it, even though I messed up the pattern of decreases so didn't get the nice lines on Woolly Wormhead's. Also I was impatient and didn't do enough rows between casting on and starting to decrease - it was a very ungenerous five inches. As a result it's more of a "tam" than a beret - i.e. if I pull it down to my ears the wide part kind of disappears.
The dpns were terrifying, but I got a bit better at it by the end. I used bamboo needles which were much easier than the plastics I've tried before.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Broken promise

Didn't manage to wait till tonight to start new project (but did get lots of work done yesterday as well. Only ten more pages to check!) Started Woolly Wormhead's Rollin' Beret last night. It's my first circular project, and I've started it on a circular needle which Woolly says is OK - but you have to change to dpns as you do the decreases for the top. Yikes.

My older daughter Rose is a student in York and we don't see her very often. But she and I had a great trip to Florence by train before Easter, then she spent a few days at home - and picked up the knitting bug! When she left she took some pins, wool and my copy of Stitch'nBitch. The following week she was travelling round Scotland with her friend, Kate, by train and bus. Not only did she teach Kate to knit, but they stopped off in Glasgow to buy wool - and Rose has finished her first scarf...

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Another crap picture, but the hat is better than the last one. Though the danger is when you're using the same pattern for the third time that you think you remember it and don't bother to check. There are several unintended customisations here, but I still like it.
I must not start another project until I've written 10 news stories for issue 6 of my magazine - we go to press on Tuesday and I've got five pages to fill and 32 pages of proofs to correct.
No idea what I'm going to do with all that worsted merino winging its way to me. I think it's going to involve slightly fancy stitch patterns though - they're wasted on this slubby stuff.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Guilty excitement

Last week I had a parcel from handpainted yarns. All of it gorgeous, but the most beautiful was the gift they enclosed - it's worsted weight merino and really the softest thing I have ever touched.
It is so lovely - lovely to hold and work with, and lovely to gaze at too because the colour is fabulous.
Anyway I emailed them to thank them and ask if it was possible to buy more as I couldn't see any on their web site. The reply explained that they could no longer sell it from their web site because they've got an agreement with some stores to supply in the US only through them. But they can sell it to Europe, Asia and Australia. So I've ordered a whole kilo at $7.50 per 100g hank! I don't really like the idea of air-freighting yarn (or anything else) and T doesn't approve either of dumping a ton of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere when Britain has plenty of its own sheep. But now I've had a taste I just can't resist. To compensate I hearby resolve to take showers only - no baths - for the next month!

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Hat 2 and waistcoat

Hat 1 is in the same pattern but with lots of mistakes. I forgot to do the last purl row on the lower band of stockinette stitch so it's a row too short, and I did 2x2 rib instead of 1x1 on the top - didn't read the pattern properly.
Got it more or less right this time though, and I plan to make a few more before I'm done. The pattern is from Colinette Artyfacts and the yarn is Colinette Prism, in Lapiz.
The waistcoat thing has no fastening at the front. A bit impractical, and I might crochet an edging with at least one button. Adapted from Anne Budd's pattern book, yarn is Colinette One Zero in jewel.
Can't get the hang of how to arrange pictures in a single posting. (I wanted the waistcoat to be below the hat)

TC and I crewed for our friend Joan on her shared narrowboat last weekend. If I say so myself I wasn't a bad tillerwoman for a beginner. We also had to go through nine locks and back the next day. I'm proudly wearing my first ever knitted garment.
We were on the Oxford Canal. First rainbow I've ever tried to photograph too.

Friday, April 14, 2006

With buttons etc.

I got some leather buttons from ebay. It actually looks quite good - even my coolista daughter likes it - though in this picture it looks like a shapeless, frumpy old disaster.

On another subject here are some pictures I took last week at our excellent local Farmers' Market.

Monday, April 10, 2006


I finished this - well nearly. It's a bit of a funny shape but I'm still proud of it. There are no buttons on it yet (and yes I'm still in my pyjamas). It's very warm and I like the colours and the length but wish I'd had the courage to continue with the stripes while shaping the top of the sleeves. I used superbulky from handpainted yarn and adapted a pattern from Anne Budd's book, the Knitter's Handy Book of Sweater Patterns. I only did stripes because I thought I hadn't ordered enough of the green or the blue to do the whole cardi but it took less wool than I expected.

I'm inspired by the blogs of experienced and confident knitters but I also wish there was a web ring for beginners. I would love to find other people who are just starting out. If I wasn't so snowed under with work I'd start one.