Thursday, 25 February 2010

More stuff.

Really yummy colours - hand dyed Wensleydale, sadly I can't remember where from - I have been saving this for a rainy day, and decided to try to prove to myself that I can still spin finely (especially after the overspun nightmare from last week). Much better this time - really lovely to spin with long, fine fibres. Very pleased with the result:

Not as pleased with how it looks plied - I used some grey cashmere that I have on a cone (must be thousands of metres on it)and of course it dulled the colours right down.In hindsight I should have used a purple and really made the colours pop, but it's done and can't be undone. It is drying in the bathroom at the moment, piccies to follow.Not perfect but definitely not a disaster.
Especially from soneone full of snot.

And a couple of piccies to remind me that I have nmot always loathed my job.
The glorious blossom was outside school, in the carpark, and would fill the place with its scent every year. The kids loved the way it blew in the windows, really lovely - not quite so lovely for our cleaner every day!

Tiny Miss W is nice, I like her eyeliner - what more could you ask for, from a couple of teenage boys, excluded from mainstream for violence, who can hardly read or write. Lovely stuff.

And what I think will have to become my mantra, when I return to work. Seriously I don't know how or if I will cope. But such is life ... enjoy!

Tuesday, 23 February 2010

I bought a beautiful, mad huge batt of asorted goodies recently, cost me much more I would usually pay, and it had about 7 different fibres in it, utterly beautiful. So what did I do? Buggered it up.
It was a delight to spin, the baby alpaca made it so soft, and I let it pretty much do as it wished (I usually spin quite fine so this was a change for me). It looked ok when single spun, but not much more than ok.
And when I plied it with silver thread, with beads and petals - well, disaster!

The most overspun thing I have ever done,really terrible. I soaked it, thwacked it and left it to dry with a weight, none of which I usually have to bother with, and it helped but not much! It was still very springy - I have managed to spin elastic!

When I knit it up, out of sheer nosiness (and I didn't like the thought of binning it), it didn't look quite as bad. Not good, but not dire. It feels very solid, and would be awful next to the skin, but might end its days as part of cushion cover or a mini wall hanging, not sure - the colours are lovely. There's one bobbin as yet uinplied, so hopefully that might have a better end.


Monday, 22 February 2010


Stonking great cold! One of those noisy sneezy ones, minimal snot so far just really bunged up (bet you REALLY wanted to know that).Decided to stay at home today and keep warm, a swim didn't seem terribly intelligent this morning.
Parcel postie STILL hasn't been (he was meant to come on Saturday to redeliver a parcel, didn't show up - this drives me mad as it happens quite often. If I book it in for Saturday why don't they turn up??

So. Knitting.

Had a bit of a mishap with this - lovely pattern from the Queen of Hearts book by Louisa Harding, both wools are DK weight, but were a world apart when knit up - the purple is from Fyberspates and is yummy, but not at all right for this.Have since reknit using a mountain of Sublime merino with silk that I have, and pinks for the hearts and so far so good (a VERY slim sleeve though, I think very heavy blocking will be needed).Photo to follow.

LOVE this cardi - 'scuse my typing if it goes mad, new keyboard and the a and s keys are sticking already. Perfect Paula from Ravelry () more an idea for a pattern than a detailed one, had to upsize it and hope for the best, not all the cable information was provided etc etc - but it fits really well (sleeves are a touch too long) and I really like it. * tried to link but can't get it to work, driving me slightly mad!

Lots of sewing to do, plenty of sock bags cut out, interfaced and awaiting sewing. Am hoping to make 5 today, and at least 20 over the week.
Snow, plenty of snow, and ice - sick of the sight of it, could do with some nice Spring weather although it is sunny today, that helps.

Keep warm!

Wednesday, 17 February 2010

Well, I did it ...

... finally got round to writing query letters about my craptastic 'book' and emailed three this morning, They can only say NO, which I can live with. But in that dream world ...well. If only. I don't think it's utter shite, but it isn't brilliant obviously. I enjoyed it, and it got me through a tough month - and one day I will sit and write something better.Ah, nd one day, 'one day' I will sit and start drafting the pattern that go with said book ...

until then
I knit

The 'October is for Spinners' scarf / stole / thing - I really enjoyed this, pretty much every minute of it.

Love the way it deconstructs, starting with 4 threds and ending with 1, the needles go up and up, and the dropped stitches and dropped triple yarn overs are carefully supported by the preceding rows so that the whole thing doesn't unravel!

Took three goes to get the legs right, but I am glad I went back and redid it - it's soaking now, will block it on the floor when I get home (am heading for a swim in a bit).

Monday, 15 February 2010

Knitting, lots of knitting.

And here it is - knitted goodness - sort of (some more than others).
I have had a bit of a knitty bit of madness since the start of the year, but some of these have used up existing wool that I really need to get knitted up before indulging in more ...

This was my first effort at knitting a jumper (or anything) in the round, on a circular needle - I can manage dpns fine but have had some sort of mental block about a circular needle. Anway, this was extremely fast, easy and I thought I liked it - but absolutely not when it was on. The gathered pullover, over a thousand projects on Ravelry, but mine - well, I am going to unpick it and reuse the wool (gorgeous felted tweed in Bilberry from Rowan, LOVE this!). Too much colour for me, and I prefer cardigans and should have gone with my gut instinct and left this to others.
To anyone making this - the purls on the cabling make very loose stitches, I changed it to all knit and it pulled the cables back in nicely. I also left out the row of increases / decreases across the bust, it looks silly (in my ever so 'umble opinion guv). So finito but to be unpicked ...
another crappy one! Ward by Kim Hargreaves. Now I know why there are only 14 of these on Ravelry - it's seriously unflattering. Too big - very big - and the waistline is too low. A useful layer when it's been bitterly cold, but nothing I would wear out.


Hurrah! One I really like!
Narvik, by Rowan.
Started this in 2008 I think, knit a front, got bored ... but I got plenty of Cocoon in my Kemps parcels so used up a couple finishing this - I changed the basketweave on the back and sleeves to stocking stitch, and I think it is much more flattering that way. I don't really want to look like an American footballer ...

Will get plenty of wear out of this, it's lovely on.
And there's more ....

another cardi finished (and being worn right now, I love it), one almost finished (am sick of the sight of it, it is in a bag) and one started.

But I am also knitting up a storm for the Ravelympics (just don't ask), so the cardi mountain has talen a bit of a back seat.

Bye for now!

and it continues

Oh yes, the general air of daftness continues.
After the terrifying encounter with mums and tots at the pool, I double checked the dates and made sure the class wasn't on. And set off early, just in case...
No mums and tots. It was pensioners aquacise, which one would think was suitable quiet and calm, and condicive to a relaxing swim.
And one would be correct.
there were also CHILDREN.In the pool. Splashing.


After the third time of being utterly soaked (yes yes I know it's a bloody pool therefore full of water, but I scrape my hair up to keep it wet, it has a bright pink streak in that I really don't want in chloribne)I spoked to mum (who was fully dressed slumped in a chair by the pool) and asked if the boys could stay in one spot as they were soaking several people, including some very old ladies.

She ignored me.
The boys then decided to swim widths.
They were really irritating the oldies (one told me she was worried they would bump into her, she was about 5 stone wringing wet).I gave mum my best Paddington Bear stare, and the width swimming stoppped.

So not the most relaxing of swims, but I managed 30 lengths and plan to go most days this week. Am making the most of the limited time I have left off work, as I am aiming to be back after Easter full time.

Plenty of knitting, will make a separate post for that as i know how temperamental this can be when it comes to photos ...

Friday, 12 February 2010

Remind me ...

...NEVER to go swimming when it is mothers and babies morning.

Small pool at a hotel (I love the pool, it's underground and quirky), I love swimming very much (and am very grateful that my health has picked up enough for me to be going three times a week at the moment, heaven) but I do NOT love mothers and babies.

Not when I am trying to swim ... it's meant to destress me! But with 8 mums and assorted offspring, and a rather irritating teacher, all doing versions on a theme of 'and WOOOOOSH we go! oh LOOK at you Frederick, aren't you CLEVER!' (Not really. You threw him in. He cried), and 'let's all go SURFING (please God no, make it stop), are we READY? and SURF!' (all sing theme to Hawaii Five OHMYGODMAKEITSTOP!) keep swimming, up and down, up and down, don't look, pretend it's not happening and 'LET'S ALL GO WOOOOOOSH! up in the air!'

I did 20 lengths and gave up - then realised too late. Big error.
Yes, I got out at the same time as the class was ending and another was about to begin - stampede for the showers, then the entire changing room area looked like a creche.

Reminded me too much of taking a class of infants swimming when I used to work in primary schools ... was half expecting one to come and ask me to help them put their tights on.

I was never part of that group of mums who have bizarre classes lined up for little Henry and Jennifer every day of the week - they were talking about baby ballet, something with intruments (I don't think it was rock guitar or death metal) and other goodies. I found out that 'swimming' was £120 a term - so if the others are the same, then about £400 a term. Three terms a year. £1200. Fuck me.

Too much time and money - what happened to playing with your kids on your own, or with your friends and their kids? It's what I did, and what my mum did. And what all the - er - vaguely normal humans did.
Thank fek nobody said 'play dates', I might have shouted Fuck Off! very loudly from the changing rooms.

Give it ten years - Henry will be advertising his party on Facebook and hoards of the great unwashed will be shagging on the shagpile, pissing in the washing machine and vomiting Chardonnay down the back of Jennifer's tutu.

(Knitting - lots to report, stay tuned)