Thursday, 7 November 2013

Want a Cowl, Will make a Cowl! Knitting in the Round Pt 2 :)

Hello everyone, I'm sorry for being a bit absent of late. You see, I've been knitting! Really!! Lots!! I have been knitting so many things since my last post - gosh, knitting is quite addictive. But I suppose its a healthy addiction.

In my last post I mentioned the difficulty of finding circular needles that don't hurt my hand and I was ready to throw in the towel and decide that perhaps using circular needles wasn't for me. But I was wrong. I tried Knit Pro's Symphonie Rose Cubics and they seem to work, so far no hand pain - yay!

So now I am very excited about writing this post because I've been on another learning curve, and I have taught myself how to knit in the round using the said circular needles and I feel so good because I've learnt something new and I have a new FO on top of it, so I actually feel like I've accomplished something :) As its getting colder now I've been thinking winter-warmers. I've already got my toasties, so I thought a cowl would be a easy beginner pattern for knitting in the round. So I went on Raverly and found what looks like a nice warm comfy cowl, The Rime Frost Cowl

Starting off

In Progress


On me :)

This cowl was a very easy, straightforward knit, and a great pattern for a beginner knitter, and I managed to knit it up in 3 days. I used Stylecraft Life SuperChunky for this project and I'm very glad I did because its so soft, and my cowl is wonderfully warm and cosy.

I have been knitting other things but they aren't exactly finished - by that I mean they still need seaming up so I'll show you those when they are actually finished :)

Finally,  I mentioned in my last post about knitting little hats for the Big Knit 2013. If you didn't read it, these hats are knit in aid of Age Concern. You'll have seen little hats on innocent drinks smoothies over the years, well this is why. Innocent drinks donate 25p for each bottle of smoothie sold with a hat on it. Here are the little hats I did. I made these using what I had in my stash of DK yarn that i got from a magazine which i never used. I didn't make very many on account of being on holiday and having several WIPs on the go, but next year I plan on doing more. It was quite fun knitting these up and they didn't take long at all. I look forward to knitting more in 2014.

Well that's all I got for you guys now. I hope this post hasn't been so long that its bored you out of your mind. I just wanted to keep y'all posted about what I've been up to. Oh, and I've made a FB page for this blog too so please like and share on both Twitter and Facebook, it would be totally awesome if you would :)   Until next time :)

Monday, 9 September 2013

A little post to say hi and all's well

Hello everyone I hope all my readers are well.

This is just a short post to say hello. I'm sorry I've not kept this blog up to date. To be honest, I've not knitted anything really since my last FO.

I did attempt to try and make my first garment using circular needles - unfortunately that was unsuccessful - not because I couldn't actually follow the pattern or anything like that, because the pattern looked easy as. But no its to do with the fact circular needles don't seem to be hand friendly for me, funnily enough. I've tried metal  fixed ones, they hurt my hands. So then I tried Knit Pro's Spectra interchangeables....that made no difference.  So I am guessing perhaps, using circular knitting needles is not for me? If thats the case that's a shame because there are so many easy seamless patterns on Raverly that I would love to try - unless anyone  can recommend anything i can do to make my hands pain free while using them, that would be awesome. So while my hands were hurting I took a long rest from knitting until my hands felt normal..

I'm  nearly finished with this Patchwork Garter Squares blanket for my friend's baby thats been a WIP since April.  "Its not finished yet?!" I can imagine you thinking. But to be honest I've gotten bored knitting squares and it feels like its never ending, so I keep stopping and starting on it. But on the plus side, haven't got that many squares left to knit which is a good thing and with any luck this blanket will be a good gift for baby's christening...or Christmas at this rate

In the meantime I am knitting little hats for Innocent drinks' charity campaign for Age Concern, which I am actually finding fun! These hats are so cute! I've knitted two so far  - I wonder how many I can make end of September.  I'll post pictures in my next blog post.

Happy Knitting :)

Thursday, 27 June 2013

Knitting in the Round - latest FO: Toasty

Hello all!  Hope all my readers are well!

Well I'd like to announce that I've taken the plunge and knitted.....fingerless arm warmers lol!

No, seriously, this was my first knitting in the round project. No, I lie, its my third...but its the first I've completed.  I first learnt how to knit in the round using DPNS (double pointed needles) two years ago on a sock knitting class held by the lovely Jane at Tea And Crafting but I had such trouble knitting my first pair of socks that I kept frogging and starting over and in the end I got frustrated so I gave up.  Two years later I  thought I'd try again and thought I'd try tackling knitting in the round with a more easier pattern, inspired by my sister who knitted her own Toastys - pattern here.

Starting off

After binding off for the thumb 


On me :)

I actually enjoyed knitting these. The thumb was the only part I had been having trouble with, but with a lot of patience, I succeeded. I added an extra stitch for the thumb as I do like a bit of room  - and my thumbs are big lol! I used Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran for this project. I love the feel of the yarn. I actually can't wait till winter now so I can wear them hehe - wait, did I really just say that? I hate winter! LOL.

I have decided though that I really dislike knitting with DPNs and that if I ever do another project that calls for knitting in the round, I will try circular needles.....but that's for another post. Until next time, everyone :)

Sunday, 9 June 2013

World Wide Knit in Public Day Saturday 8th June 2013

So, earlier in the week I saw a tweet on my twitter feed announcing a Worldwide Knit in Public Day event in London, hosted  by Love Knitting. So I thought "hey that sounds fun" and decided to go.

The event was held in St Pancras International Station and boy what a turnout it was!

It was such fun. I sat down and joined in knitting with everyone else and  also met and spoke to some lovely friendly ladies and for once I didn't feel awkward about having to knit around loads of people and feel like this incredible weirdo for doing so.   There were also some guy knitters there which I thought was cool.  There were some people who came along to learn how to knit and had made some lovely mug cosies. I wish I had made one because they were great!

I had also signed up to take part in a lace knitting workshop held by Sarah Hatton from Rowan. So after two hours of knitting and nattering, I joined in the workshop with some other fellow knitters.

We were all given a nice ball of Rowan Baby Merino Silk DK. I chose this beautiful colour - not a colour I'd normally pick for myself but I thought I'd be different for a change, and I am glad I picked it.

I learnt how to read from a chart and spent the next two and a half hours following a chart and knitting and chatting away with other friendly knitters

The pattern I believe, was for a tiny pincushion, so Sarah kindly gave us all a nice selection of fabric to use. I totally love what i picked out and i could probably use one of them to line the bag i am in the middle of making.

The event finished at 5pm, although there were still some people still knitting. I didn't finish my pattern at the end of the event but I did take it home to finish off and came out looking like this

The whole day was brilliant and I have now decided that I need to find a knitting group closer to where I live and join in the fun because it was great just chatting to like minded people while knitting - or as a fellow knitter who joined me from the workshop said, start my own!

Thank you to the team at Love Knitting, it  was fun!

Thursday, 23 May 2013

A Tale of Two Sidneys - my first FO after 2 years :)

Hi, everyone. I apologise for the lack of posting over the last couple of weeks. You see, I've been busy knitting my blanket and then I came across issue 66 of Let's Knit Magazine which had the coolest freebie! Sidney Owl toy kit :)  The kit came with yarn, felt and buttons and a booklet of toy patterns, Sidney Owl pattern included :) I looked at the pattern and thought it was so easy that I decided to give it a shot.

I learnt a couple new stitches, whilst making Sidney Owl, one of which was the k1b (knit one below) stitch which I was so confused by because the stitches looked nothing like the picture, I'd frogged Sidney Owl at least 3 times, but luckily I had a bit of help from someone from Ravelry.

So, finally, Sidney is complete after a couple of weeks. Actually, Sidney has been ready a little over a week, I just finished the last bits like sewing the face this week.

I enjoyed making Sidney Owl so much that I decided to make a Big Sidney Owl as well :) Big Sidney was made using Sirdar Hayfield Bonus Chunky This took me a week - knitting chunky and using 6.5mm straight needles is not easy. I should have used circular needles which I'm sure would have been a lot easier to manage but never mind. So Sidney Owl has a big sister also called Sidney lol ! I still have a fair bit of this yarn left over so if anyone has any ideas on what I can knit to use what i have left over, it would help :)

Both Sidneys will be off to their new home this week - Big Sidney will be going to my best friend's eldest child, and little Sidney will be going to her baby boy, who will be able to play with him when he's older.

Stitches learnt:

Tuesday, 23 April 2013

Making my first knitting mistake grrr!

Well I've made my first beginner knitting mistake...well actually make that my second beginner knitting mistake.  It turns out that my knitting too tightly earlier made my squares smaller if you compare them to what my not so  tightly knitted yellow ones look like now. So i have 8 white small squares and 5 yellow mediium squares - and now i feel like pulling my hair out.  So I guess blocking would be of use here, wouldn't' it? Well that or I unravel the whites and start over again. Oh i feel like such a ninny.

I did find a blog post which sort of helps me when it comes to blocking these squares so its a great tip on Blocking Acrylic Yarn. Hope it works!

Wish me luck lol!

Wednesday, 17 April 2013

Been on the learning curve this weekend

So this weekend I got bored of knitting the squares.  I found it too repetitve in a way that I was getting really bored with it all, and I should be enjoying my knitting not hating it. So, i opened up my copy of Knitty Gritty: The Absolute Beginner and there is this project bag I've wanted to knit since I bought the book. so i started on it and I learnt how to do the cable stitch for the first time.

 The first few rows

A few rows more

I am quite pleased how its going, although I feel I've made a bit of a mess with regards to knitting CB4...(see left hand side). To me it looks like the cable pattern is looking a bit odd..but perhaps its just me?  The yarn I am using for this bag is Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran. I have to say, i do love the feel of this yarn.   I had this yarn in my current project bag because initially i was going to knit a jumper with it..but i don't feel ready for a jumper just yet, and the pattern said i should use Aran yarn so i thought hey i have some, so why not just use it?

Apart from that, I also learnt how to do the Thumb Cast on and the Long Tail Cast on. I have been using the Knit Cast On  method since I learnt how to knit, but I find that too time consuming so i wanted to learn a faster way of casting on. I'm so glad Youtube exists. Its great there are some video tutorials there to show you how to do what.

Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Blog title change I think

OK my blog seemed to have turned into more of a diary than a knitting blog although its still about knitting my posts seem to feel generally as if I'm writing a diary rather than writing about my knitting. So I'm thinking of changing the title of this blog.  Ideas, readers? Do leave feedback.

On the knitting front I am going to stop trying to knit this blanket until further notice. Still getting finger pain and i even tried knitting continental and that hasn't helped either, if anything the finger pain has gone from my right hand to my left. ARGH! So I'm going to ask someone at home to lock my knitting in a cupboard until I receive advice from anyone in the medical field. I only hope I quit for another year like i did the last time and something can soon be sorted out.

Monday, 8 April 2013

Advice please all knitters - any tips gratefully appreciated

OK so over the weekend after a week or so of resting my hands I thought OK let me try again. I thought maybe the reason for the pain in my hands or fingers was the way I was holding the needles and yarn and I think my theory was right. So I went and found this Youtube video and when I saw the way she was knitting I was like "aaah thats whats going wrong?" So I followed her method on Sunday and knitted for a little while, and  had no problems - until this morning when i could feel the tingly pain in my fingers and my left wrist was a little achy too - arrgggh!  Maybe I'm not meant to be a knitter?   Or maybe its the needles? Should I try knitting with bamboo again?  Or should I try knitting flat with circulars? I have tried the continental method but as easy as it looks, I don't actually find it very easy.

In other news though with regards to my blanket I've knitted a total of 8 white squares and 1 yellow square lol! At least with any luck this blanket will be ready for May when the baby is due.  

Saturday, 30 March 2013

I have learnt where I went wrong....

Taking a back seat from the my fingers are hurting again...what the hell am i doing wrong? I am doing the stretches, I am not knitting without taking a break argh! I took knitting up as a hobby as something I could enjoy but clearly its not working...grr....I'm thinking of getting myself one of these Handeze gloves that nearly every website I've read re knitting hand pain, recommends...a good idea you think, readers? 

Meanwhile whilst taking this little break until my fingers feel somewhat normal, I have been going on You Tube looking at knitting videos and I do wish I had come across this video before I started picking and knitting the the squares I knitted earlier at the start of knitting this blanket! Doh! No wonder my knitting looked...wodgy (wonky and dodgy mashed up lol) Oh well a lesson learnt eh?   I think I'll make this blanket one  day though, It looks really nice and would be a nice blanket to cose up to in the cold wintery period.

Monday, 25 March 2013

I'm already thinking about my next project lol

Knitting the baby blanket is going well. I found picking and knitting  the  stitches of the squares of my blanket a bit tiresome and some what exhausting and I found in a way, that I am ruining the squares by doing so - you could see it from the picture I posted in my last post. So I thought I'd just knit  the baby squares and seam them in when its finished. It might take some time but its better than ruining what is supposed to be a lovely present for my BFF's baby.

Meanwhile, whilst the blanket is still a WIP (for those who are reading my blog first time and aren't knitters,  WIP stands for Work In Progress),  I am already looking at what my next project should be. I came across this knit pattern: Converse Booties. While on the baby theme, why not? So cute, so tempted to try!  Can anyone suggest any other easy knits I can knit for a baby?

Friday, 22 March 2013

Umm....its all gone slightly a bit wrong - does it look really bad?

So, I decided to pick and knit the next square and I am starting to wish that I hadn't and just stuck to knitting squares and sewing them together, even if it did take me some time.

So picking and knitting, it took me a while to figure out how to do it but I did it.(Yay me!)  And i managed to knit a few rows till something went horribly wrong (how can you go wrong knitting garter stitches?!) that I thought I'd frog it  and try again, but for some reason the yarn knotted in one of the stitches that i made the decision of cutting the yarn from the knot, and re knit the stitches that were there and managed to 'save' my knitting somehow...but the squares look rather...wonky yikes! Think the receiver will notice the wonky-ness in the squares?

Someone suggested i knit squares on the sides of the first 2 that I have knitted and that should straighten it out. What do you all think? Should I? Or would it be better to start all over again?

Apart from  this WIP, I have also thought of my next project would you believe? LOL I mean, like, I haven't even finished this yet and already thoughts are pouring about what I should knit next.  Does anyone else do that or am I just completely weird?

Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Pick up and Knit or Knit and sew?

So, yesterday I received my yarn for the baby blanket I am currently working on. Don' t these look like such gorgeous colours?

Anyhow, I started up on it and managed to finish one square today  However after casting off, I remembered Aneeta Patel's advice from her book  Knitty Gritty: Knitting for the Absolute Beginner on how casting off should be with a needle size larger than the one I was knitting with...oops. hope that doesn't make a huge difference.  How does the square look? Check it out?

Anyhow, the square isn't the main reason for my blog post today. I mean yeah I just knitted the first square but there is a question.  I recently read on Ravelry on how someone picked and knitted stitches for the  next square rather than going through the time of sewing each and every square, and I wonder if I should do that too?  Or is it better to just knit the squares and sew them up?

Sunday, 17 March 2013

Teaching myself how to knit continental - not easy

So, last night i thought i'd practice knit, you know just to see if I remember how to cast on and do the knit stitch and stuff - how can anyone forget - its like riding a bike (oh boy one of my friends is going to laugh about that comment lol) Anyway I obviously did some arm and hand stretches before doing the knitting, and I found even after that I still got pain in my upper left arm.

So I read somewhere that knitting in continental style is supposed to be easier on the hands/wrists/arms (unless I read wrong) so I teach myself using this video on Youtube Continental knit stitch.  So early this morning (yes I am one of those early risers, even on a Sunday!) I did the stretches, picked up my knitting needles and yarn, cast on like about 5 stitches and thought I'd give it a go. OMG its hard! i don't think using the plastic needles my sister gave me for christmas 2 years ago help either (even though they are comfortable to use and also easier on the hands), cos they make it all so slippery. But I suppose practice makes perfect right?  Can anyone give me any tips on how i can make everything less.....slippery?

Saturday, 16 March 2013

First Knit Project in after a year would you believe!!

Hello everyone. Sadly this blog hasn't been kept up to date, on account of  taking a backseat to knitting due to hand/wrist pain. I think I'd gotten too carried away with my knitting that I didn't think to rest my hands or do stretches and stuff, so I thought I'll take a break, and what a break it has been - a whole year! Yikes!
Well I thought I'd try again, and if things with my hands happen again I think it'll be safe to assume that knitting isn't for me and i will have to sell all my knitting stuff my sister bought for me for Christmas in 2011.

So, my back to basics project is a baby blanket. My BFF is having a baby due in May and she has a baby shower coming up in a few weeks. Now because she has a child already I have been wondering what I can do for her for the shower. So i thought why don't I make something like a baby blanket. So thanks to lovely people on Ravelry, I chose this pattern: Patchwork Garter Baby Throw.

I've yet to start it but I have picked out my yarn which my sister kindly helped me pick. I chose 4 colours out  of this yarn Robin Bonny Babe Aran.  My colours are mint, yellow, white and lilac. I wasn't 100% sure about the lilac but my sister and another fellow ravelrer, Charly said yes. What do you all think?