Friday, 27 July 2012

Ravellenic Games 2012

Anyone else joining in with the Ravellenic Games 2012 over at Ravelry?

I've entered two events under team DARNYarnies2012 - first is the Afghan Marathon, Rams and Yowes by Kate Davies and the secnd is the Shawl Sailing, Rosaleen Shawl by Rach Coopey.

I'm very new to this having never competed before so I'm bound to be last in everything and/or dashing about the wrong field but the excitement is building as we approach the opening ceremony and get the needles ready to CO!

I've got a hank of yarn to wind ready to CO and best get this done before opening the wine!!

Would love to connect with other ravellenic knitters here or on Ravelry - good luck and enjoy the knitting I mean the Games!!

some SEWING!

yes! some SEWING!
just to warm up both myself and my sewing machine I decided to have a go at using this lovely laminated cotton and made up a sandwich pouch and wrap from the lovely book I bought recently from Cotton Patch when a cyber-AFib-Pal came to visit.

Birthday Celebrations!

A couple of weeks ago my "little" brother celebrated his 40th birthday and here are some pics taken from that evening in the Indian restaurant with some of his close friends!

The cake was lovely! very cleverly someone local was commissioned to make a "bikers" cake which went down very well!  Everyone had a great time!

On Monday it will be no.2.son's 17th birthday - there will be cake but a bit more modest! a usual chocolate fudge topped and filled sponge!
He already has his gift - an ipod touch which he is pleased with and pleased US as our lads are very difficult to buy for as they rarely want anything (in particular) and you can't give "cash" to your own sons! lol!!
We plan another meal out on Monday with family to celebrate!

I finished the little knitting projects for my no.1.son's pal's 18th birthday - she'd requested some hand knit pink "pretty" socks if you remember, and we posted out a lovely box of items including a crocheted corsage/flower and some sweets and lollipops amongst it - the package arrived on time! yay! and at the same time she'd attended an interview for a job and had the good news that she had been SUCCESSFUL!  how marvellous is that? to be 18yrs, get your first job and have a surprise gift in the post and celebrate with your family on the night!
Happy birthday Sophie!

Summer shawl KAL

I've signed for two summer mystery shawl knits!
Started June 20th and finished July 19th a nice warmer upperer don't you think?
The clues came through and each has been uploaded and shared on my project page, and here is the finished project! a nice little shawl - or "capelet" as some are calling it!

I plan to add a button or so keep it closed, at the moment I am using a nice pin but its a bit fiddly!
Enjoyed knitting this, I used just shy of two hanks of the lovely yarn from here.

Second mystery KAL I joined - just before finishing the Wendy kal was this!
A knit pal I meet weekly with is also taking part and its been lovely sharing progress and comparing in real "life" and I'm rather behind in this pattern not quite finished knitting wedges for clue one and clue THREE is due about NOW!! gulp!!
I'm not rushing! I shall knit at my own pace, the forums on Ravelry for both these KAL's has been fabulous and I've had some lovely conversations with other knitters through them its worth looking to see if there are any YOU fancy! (and don't forget to tell ME either! if you likes it chances are I will too!!).

This is my progress so far! you can check out the yarn and pattern and get all the links you need for this and other KAL's on my project pages, this is the one for the WestKnits.

Now for some cat-cuteness.
you can't have cats in the house without them taking part in some way with knitting!
Here are some lovely pics taken recently of our cats!

Bertie INSIDE my project bag!
Lilly claiming the bag for HERSELF (poor Bertie!)

Lilly "helping" me block my shawl!
The shawl survived Lilly's "help" and blocked out ok!

Thursday, 12 July 2012

Shawls and Gloves

I seem to have more and more projects on my needles all of a sudden!
The lovely mystery KAL shawl by Wendy Johnson is coming along nicely, I'm up to clue D and plan to do the two sets of increases as per instructions, about half way through my yarn so will be interested to see how much I have or if I need to order another.

Last week I was lucky enough to be gifted one pattern - I chose this one - for having knitted in timely fashion the lovely strawberry socks!

I must have been having a lucky streak, at the same time the lovely Ysolda Teague had a birthday offer of 27% off her selection of patterns and I chose two, one of which is on my needles now!
the lovely Ishbel!  I have CO using the Rowan Fine Lace yarn I bought a while back with a view to knitting a free pattern from the Rowan website, but as I have matching beads I changed my mind and plan to use the yarn and beads for Ishbel instead!!

I'm still at the st st increasing section - it is taking a while because of the other projects I've got on the go but I'm hoping to finish the increases and move onto more exciting charted part soon!

My Marleen socks have not been forgotten!  they are next on my list to pick up and knit! but I am no further on with those than last I reported a month or so ago.

In addition to the excitement of all the shawls and scarves, I have CO a pair of gloves in the now discontinued Rowan scottish tweed 4ply!  I think this MC in the black/fleck is the same shade that my knit-pal-Sally had managed to get off Ebay at a very favourable price!  Tonight at knit-night I hope to compare and catch up!

She promises to bring her latest FO - "Wingspan" and I can't wait to see it as I've had this pattern queued for ages with a view to knitting one every time I see someone else has done so!!

Knitting and Baking some finished, most started!

What to start with! cute pic of cat in an empty knitting project bag OR cake?
Here are both!
David's birthday cakes
My brother was 40 last Sunday and on Monday he came round for cake!
Traditionally our late-Mother used to bake him a chocolate cake for his birthday and I seem to have taken up the tradition - adding this time, the lovely "mud pie" dessert which if I just throw in 600ml fresh double cream, 300g chocolate, 200g marshmallows .. you get the idea? FATTENING. very very fattening.  not one for everyday, but perfect for birthdays!
The chocolate cake is Delia Smith's sponge and her topping and filling "fudge" which is seriously yummy and I made two of these one for my step-sister and step-father to share.

BERTIE is a silly cat.
Bertie has a habit of finding crafty places to hide and his current fave is inside one of my empty - for now! - knitting bags.  He looks so cute? doesn't he? Not to be left out, Lilly attempted same but somehow got stuck and tangled and caught in the handles - we weren't fast enough to get a photo of her!

On the KNITTING front I'm pleased to say that my lovely gift set made for no.1.son's friend who has a birthday this month is FINISHED!
The sock pattern is the lovely Strawbs from the lovely Rachel Coopey and the "kit" can be ordered I think from the Knitting Goddess, here is her blog post.

Sorry the socks don't look their best, I didn't want to stretch them over my feet - I did get my son - cough! shhh! now! promised NOT to tell! - to try them on to see that I had the lovely left and right flowing pattern correct for each foot but he would NOT have his feet photographed.
I can't blame him.  he was good enough to model them for me to see so take MY word for it - they are LOVELY knitted and worn!

Sophie's gift set

This is the little gift set we made for Sophie's birthday.  no.1.son made the birthday card and I made the gift tag.

The gift tag was deliciously easy to make using card stock, papers and some fancy LintonTweed yarn - I used the directions from a free craft pattern for two sizes of gift tag from Amy Butlers website - free patterns.

At the beginning of the week I got the iron and ironing board out to do the lads' shirts and tees and found that dh had somehow burnt two holes in a shirt, burnt the sole of the iron and the ironing board cover!  He had attempted to keep this from me but with the evidence left tucked into the corner of the hallway in the form of his burnt shirt! he couldn't deny it was him.
WHY I asked, why? didn't you tell me!? I could have cleaned the iron! 
agh. errumm. cough. I cleaned it myself!
hmm. well not with iron gunk remove cleaner!?
what then?
errrm. I might have dabbed a bit at the ironing board cover to wipe it away .. ?
aha. that explains the burnt cover!

to be fair, the cover did need replacing.  just now it really DID need replacing NOW.
Luckily I had some fabric that both suited and fitted and also a narrow long piece of natural fibre wadding to pad out the underside.
I set to and cut my pattern for both pieces, overlocked the edge and then used my no.21 foot and "couched" in satin stitch over the cord to draw up to fit tightly the ironing board.

simple job, it didn't take long and it was nice to get my machines out again!

Sunday, 1 July 2012

Olympic Torch! timed it just right ..

You might be able to see the weather was LOVELY this morning!
Just as well!
The Olmpic torch was coming through the City right at the bottom of our road and I got the family to agree to wander down - just as well we stepped on it - got there with 5mins to spare before the entourage drove past, a quick "change over" just in view and then a gentle sprint past!
You had to be quick!
In truth its over in seconds and the crowd disperses quickly (back to bed!)
This is Birmingham at 7am and the sky was brilliant blue and sunny if fresh, I'm looking a bit bedraggled but squinting because of the sun which these days is a rare thing!

On the knitting side, approaching the end of the foot section on the Strawberry sock, still to pick up on Marlene and no more progress on the stripe cardigan.
Two rows to go to complete clue b for the mystery shawl KAL and then wait for next clue!