Thursday, April 30, 2009


It's starting to feel like Spring is really here: Hoping we've had the last snow of the season, and enjoying seeing the flowers start to bloom.

I'm making good progress on my Spring sweater - Tempest. The back is now finished and blocked. (Which makes all the difference in the world - it now looks like it should fit me, rather than a small child!).

The theme for this month's stamp club was Spring and so I made these tulip cards for the card swap. I'm really happy with how these turned out, and they were really quick and simple to make.

Stamp club this month was also dedicated to flower motifs. We made a pretty 'watercolour' rose card. I think this is an effective technique and will be trying it again: You stamp and emboss the (rose) image and then spritz the whole thing with water. Take a paintbrush and some ink and dab it onto the wet design - the ink spreads with the water and creates this watercolour effect. Simple! (You probably didn't need this much info right?)

We also made a cutesy flowerpot Mother's day card (this one will be going to my Mother-in-Law as Mother's day in the UK has been and gone already). My MIL loves to garden and so I think she'll be tickled by this.

Hope you are enjoying Spring too ?

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Crafty Twitterings

Some updates on my crafty endeavours (be warned, it's a long rambling one...):

First a long overdue thank-you to Hyeknitter. The lovely Lisa awarded me the Kreativ Blogger award. Talk about making a girl's day!

There are times I wonder why I do the whole blogging thing - whether to continue, or not. Especially with Ravelry and Flickr out there enabling me to share knitty projects with friends, and pics with friends and family. But then I think of the super nice people I've met through blogging and it all seems more than worthwhile. Thank you to everyone who swings by :)

Back to Lisa's blog - if you are unfamiliar with it, I'd recommend that you check it out. She's got some lovely projects posted out there - leftovers vest, Ariann, tree jacket... And a gorgeous pair of Malabrigo socks.

This sock posting was the last little nudge needed for me to run out and splurge on some Malabrigo sock yarn of my own - umm yes, 3 skeins of the yummy stuff.
Side note: Every time I come home with more yarny loot Joe has started doing his best Shirley Bassey impression and singing 'Yarnfinger' (think Goldfinger) - "She loves only yarn.... only yarrnnnnn"! I asked him whether he thought I might have a 'yarn problem' (I've been acquiring it at a ridiculous rate recently). He said it would only be a problem if I didn't like the stuff. Good man!

OK, back to the crafty goodness. A little while ago I'd posted some earrings that I'd made. My blogger friend Dany really seemed to like them, and so I popped some in the mail for her a couple of weeks ago. They arrived the other day, and they are a winner. Result!
I've also been stamping quite a bit. I attend a stamp club every month where we make a couple of items at the club and swap cards we've made at home. Here's a few showings from the last couple of months ('cos I've been a lazy blogger and not posted about them until now... that and I think that most folks that read the blog are coming for knitterly fodder).
Feb stamp club projects (there is candy on each of those St. Patricks day lolly sticks) :
March stamp club projects - that's right there's chocolate in there too!
And I also stamp with my good friend Cheryl (which is always a treat as she makes me the most delicious lunches too!)
The first is a Ghirardelli chocolate box (that's right, more of the sweet stuff!) And the last row of 4, Cheryl made the 2 Easter cards on the right for Joe and I, and his parents. How cute are they!

Whew, bet you are glad that lengthy post is done!
Hope you are having crafty fun too,

Tuesday, April 21, 2009


So here it is, the lovely Loppem:

  • Pattern: Loppem (From Norah Gaughan Collection No. 3)
  • Yarn: Red Rocks Fiber Works 'Winter Park' (100% Merino) in Colour 'Sing like Pink' (if only I could!)
  • Size: I chose to knit one size larger than I normally would. One of the things I like about this pattern booklet is that it shares the actual size of the model, and the size she is wearing. It seems the tiny wee thing in the book was wearing a size larger than I would have picked for her... and so I figured I'd take the same approach.
  • Modifications: I did knit the yoke a little longer than the pattern calls for simply because I wanted the cable pattern to finish at the end of a repeat (vs the middle of one)
  • Things I'd do differently next time: In hindsight I would have made the lower section a touch longer instead of the yoke. This way I'd still get my full cable pattern repeat and I'd have the cute cap sleeves. Not that it looks bad as is. I'm actually super happy with the outcome. I just think it could be improved on... aah the beauty of hindsight.

I was a little disappointed with how the pattern was written. (Note: check for errata before you begin - I know this should be a general rule of thumb for all patterns). Aside from the errata issue, I'm never fond of having to figure out how to evenly space increases or decreases... I like the pattern to do that for me. (Picture it - late at night, feet up, glass of wine... that's right the brain has gone into relax mode... last thing it needs is to kick back into gear to solve some basic math).

I absolutely love this yarn. Such a rich colour. And so very soft and smooshy. And I think there might be enough left to make myself some fingerless mittens. Bonus!

And, as I mentioned in my last post, this counts as my NaKniSweMoDo sweater for April.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Knitty Update

Loppem is blocking! That's right, still on track for the NaKniSweMoDo one sweater a month. I'm enjoying the nudge it is giving me to finish sweaters. This one is for April - just have a couple of buttons to sew on and a few ends to weave in. But first it needs to finish drying. The knitting went pretty quickly (being tucked indoors as a result of a snowstorm helped).

While I'm waiting for Loppem to dry I pulled out Tempest and some Red Rocks sock yarn in 'Granny Smith' colourway. This will be a nice lightweight Spring cardigan.

And then there's the araucania/patagonia hexagon blanket -- I added a few extra hexagons this last week, and like this more and more as it grows. The colours are fun, bright, happy colours and the nubby texture adds interest. Seems it has another admirer...

And last but not least I received this fun card from my Mum. She just loves the handknit felted clogs and is on her 2nd pair this winter. Dad says she has 'special slipper eating toes'. (Seems Joe has the same problem.) I know it's just slipper love as demonstrated by some serious wear -- gotta love when a handknit is soo well received!

This cracks me up! Thanks Mum xoxo

Saturday, April 18, 2009


It's been snowing in our neck of the woods. A lot.

The winter storm watch started yesterday morning and by the end of the day we had at least a foot of snow.

Still Joe and I ventured out (like crazy people) to celebrate a friend's birthday and watch Tang Concubines at the theatre. Which I thoroughly enjoyed! The performance was spectacular - the dancers pulled off moves I've only ever seen in Cirque du Soleil performances. The costumes are dazzling, the stories interesting and the music majestic. It's a little saucy too: At one point the mother of 2 young boys leaned over and suggested they cover their eyes!

It was quite the hair-raising journey to get there and back (snowy roads on the way there and a pea-souper of a fog on the way back). But we made it home safe and sound and when we woke up this morning it was still snowing! Big, wet, heavy drops of snow. (I'm hoping that once all this snow clears up our lawn will start to look a little more like grass and a little less like straw!)

Needless to say I won't be going anywhere today. If at all this weekend. Which means good hibernation time -- watching movies, hanging out with my hubby, baking and trying to make a dent in my mound of work. Oh and knitting, of course!

To all my local girls - stay warm and safe!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Hot Pinks and Bright Reds

The new NaKniSweMoDo project I'm working on:

The beautiful flowers I received from Cheryl and Vince for Easter:

The yummy trifle that I'd made for Easter lunch:

I'm drawn to certain colours... are you?

Thursday, April 09, 2009

Here and there cables scarf

Yay! It is done:

This one felt like it might have gone on forever... but I'm soo very glad I plugged along because the end result is pretty.

Joe was joking that maybe Carmen wouldn't like it, and that I should keep it. Tempting as that sounds, it is going out in the mail this weekend to my dear friend.

Now I wonder how she'll feel about my handsome fella getting in a few model shots? Lovely scarf plus a few random dog hairs? Aah she knows me well enough, she'd probably expect nothing less.

So, the details:
  • Pattern: 'Here and There Cables' by the incredibly talented Norah Gaughan (from the book 'scarf STYLE, Interweave Knits')

  • Yarn: Red Rocks Fiber Works 'Paradise' (yes it is true to it's name) in colourway 'Green Grass'

  • Mods: None really to speak of... I used a US 6 needle (instead of a 7) as that worked better with the thickness of the yarn. Pattern calls for you to knit for 72inches. I just carried on until I ran out of yarn - ending up at 64 inches long by 6.5 inches wide (after blocking).

It feels good when the effort invested was worth it!