August 31, 2008

A walk on the wild side:) AKA what to do with leftover sock yarn

Yes it is true

I've taken a walk on the wild side,insert Lou Reed song:)
For a long while,well since January actually, I've been wondering how I could do justice to the remains of all the sock yarn I'm using for the hospice socks. Yes I know I could make smaller pairs as well but you know a person has to do something other than socks once in a while. So finally today I did:-

Oh look! What is that in the midst of the sock yarn leftovers?
Could it be the start of a crochet blanket?
Ha! bet you didn't know I could crochet did you? Not a lot where patterns are concerned but since I was a little girl I have made crochet blankets and throws. Oh and for my first narrowboat I made cushion covers in elemental colours. Haven't done much crochet lately because of the socks, and the shawls, and the socks and the....
So what do you think? A good way to use leftovers? Some yarns didn't have anything left over and some I made some tiny socks with but I would say there is a good start to a blanket here wouldn't you?
The idea is that while it is small I'll do 2 rows of each colours randomly as they come out of the bag but with a colours that continues in between like the brown one here. Hopefully that will tie it together a little. I didn't want to do squares as my hands are too sore to stitch them together and I can't be bothered to have to crochet dozens, even hundreds together. Maybe slight exaggeration there on the 100s:)
At the end of the year I'm going to raffle it with all proceeds going to?
Yes you've guessed, to the hospice.
There will be a wide variety in it from Opal and Regia to Wollmeise and Posh. A little of all the leftovers I have.
Watch this space.
Mr Mog has his appointment with the doctor at 8am in the morning so keep your fingers crossed please that they can do something to help.
Then a fun filled day with our 2 grandsons before they go back to school on Tuesday. Elder one starts at big school, a big day for him.

August 30, 2008

Yarn wound and a sorry tale:(

I've wound the yarn I dyed the other day, well some of it. Thereby hangs a sorry tale:(

You see this glorious kid mohair I dyed? Well I think(no I'm almost sure) I've felted it:( I tried to wind it and it is sticking to itself. Don't know what to do with it. So sad as I absolutely love the colours.


These however have wound fine. Top is the rainbow sock yarn , bottom left is the autumn thicker wool, right is the cashwool. This has such a silky look to it. I love them all.

A sock for Mr Mog


The first sock for Mr Mog using my own hand dyed yarn. What do you think? It is bright isn't it? He should be hard to miss that's for sure:) I love the colours very much. They yarn is nice but I think I'd like to find some thicker for winter socks. Still 4 ply but a thicker feel if you know what I mean?
Now a little rant;-
We had a walk on the prom this morning and called in at the continental market that is on this weekend. Didn't buy anything and do you know why? All the food was open to the elements, the wasps and flies etc. How is it that here in UK suppliers have to use oodles of plastic and covers for the things they sell yet bring over a foreigner and they can display just as they wish? Honeys were open for tasting, fair enough but each pot had many wasps around so who would want to taste? Bread unwrapped and people coughing and smoking over it. The cakes were in lurid colours , designed to make anyone hyperactive I'd think. These too covered in flies and the guy selling was sneezing over them. Would you buy? No well I didn't either.
The large pans for cooking fish and potatoes were full of raw prawns waiting to be cooked, uncovered of course.
Mr Mog and I were laying bets how many people would have upset stomachs and food poisoning this weekend, bearing in mind how dreadfully muggy it is also.
Seems (according to the headlines on the Daily Mail in our local newsagents) we are forecast to have 10 days of rain I think all tomorrow. That will help the crops not:(
Right I'm off to start another sock, or should I dye some yarn, or should I wind the yarn I've already dyed? Who knows, I'll tell you next time.
Why is it that only here in UK do we have to follow the so called regulations?

August 29, 2008

Look what I was sent:)




Look what the lovely Jan sent me this morning:) Isn't it fabulous:) I do love it when someone makes me something to wear, it is so much nicer than making yourself something I always feel. Thank you Jan it is gorgeous and just my colours:)

August 28, 2008

Socks, Moebius and shawl:)

I have a finished moebius to show you and 2 items in progress.
Details as follows:-


This is the best:) This moebius is knit in the BFL aran that Maylin dyed and sent to me for my birthday.

Aren't the colours gorgeous? I followed a Cat Bordhi pattern for a purl ridge moebius but decided my own number of rows for each ridge. I haven't blocked it as moebius aren't easy to block because of the crossover. Plus I think the weight will help it drop.
Lydia looks ok in it but here it is au natural. Maylin you must do some more yarns like this for your etsy shop. It was gorgeous to knit with and the colours are perfect. Much better than Noro as there were no knots or abrupt colour changes.
Then I thought you might like to see state of play on the socks I'm making Mr Mog. This is the undyed BFL from bluefaced.com that I dyed when I went to visit Artis anne. Bright aren't they? Perfect for Mr M.


The shawl is a mix of mohair boucle from unknown source together with Colinette silky chic in florentina. Very warm and very snuggily.

August 25, 2008

A wheel of socks, progress so far



I thought you might like to see how far I've progressed on the lunar year of socks for the hospice. I decided a wheel shape in honour of the wheel of the year was the most suitable way to display them. There are 25 pairs of socks here so far and we are only 2/3rds of the way through the year. Far more than my original hope of 1 pair per lunar month, making 13 pairs in all.
I hadn't realised how many I'd made. Especially if you think I've made pairs for family, shawls and more:) This doesn't include the 2 pairs made by Jane and Gourdon Girl, 27 pairs up to now:)
I think the hospice will be very pleased don't you? I want to thank everyone who got involved in this project and sent me yarn, it is very much appreciated. As you know this project is very dear to me.
Also in answer to the emails I've had, yes please to sock yarn. I can always use more as this project will be continuing next year all be it in a slightly different form. I am hoping to purchase some more of the more exotic yarns when I can get them such as Sundara, Wollmeise etc Not that they are better, its just that I wanted to show the whole range you can knit with. Most people aren't aware of the sock obsession around the world, well you wouldn't be if you didn't knit socks I guess.
More pictures tomorrow of the Mr Mog socks and my purple shawl.
Next socks in the hospice project? That would be Rosie's yarn she dyed for me I think
:)

August 24, 2008

Pansies among thesage and chrysanths(socks of course)



The pansy socks are finished and I am pleased with them. I love the colours of the yarn and how it knit up.
Yarn details:Laal Bear pansy sock yarn purchased from Woolfest
Needles 2.5mm, 1st sock on 4 DPNs 2nd sock on magic loop circular knitpicks harmony. Second sock far quicker than first, I love the magic loop method of sock knitting:)
So another pair for the hospice year of socks.
I've now cast on for a pair for Mr Mog using the rainbow yarn I dyed at Artis Annes. Watch this space.

August 23, 2008

Feast or famine , more dyeing pictures

rainbow sock front
and back view, isn't it bright?
the kid mohair
back view of kid mohair
autumn front and back view

green cashwool
Just had to post the pictures of the dyed yarn I love the colours so much:) It will be interesting to see how they look once it is reskeined or wound into a ball.

Shawl blocked and finished


The shawl is finished. This was the mohair that Jane very kindly gave me, not sure where it is from? A beautiful rich mixture of reds, burgundys rust. I'm currently knitting the second pansy sock using the yarn I purchased from Laal Bear at Woolfest, also a purples shawl using colinette silky chic and mohair. Pictures soon

I've dyed:) Coast railway jaunt







I've been busy:) Today was the day to have a go at dyeing on my own, no help from Anne:))
What do you think? All done with procion dyes. The blue green kid mohair was done in a jam pan, the others were cling film and steamer. The kid goat mohair and the rainbow sock yarn were yarns from Andy at Bluefaced leicester.com. I am not sure how easy the mohair will be to wind but we will see:) The green small skein was a lucky find. 50pence for a very large cone of what it says is cashwool. I thought I'd try dyeing to see how it went and it is fine. I think it is a 4ply/sock yarn. The earthy skein was a charity shop find this morning 100% pure wool, 8 skeins for £2. I've dyed one and it will be either hat of fingerless gloves I think, the rest is for bags of the felted variety. Very hard work though and my admiration for those dyers who do this for a living.
Yesterday's train journey was great, very tiring but we really enjoyed it.
Only down side, it is Solfest this weekend and there was a party got on part way going there. No probs with most of the party but one young lass was drunk and swigging back vodka like there was no tomorrow. This at 10am in the morning. She was very loud, foul language and generally obnoxious. Shame really as I don't think she would be fit to get off the train at Aspatria the way she was going. What a waste:( Rest of the day was fun. We went as far as Whitehaven on the train, then got a return to Ulverston. We had a late lunch there in the wonderful Hot Mango before continuing home . Arrival back 5.15pm from an 8.30am start:) The scenery was incredible, most of the journey was along the coast. We also went through Ravenglass where La'al Ratty the steam railway goes from. Passing through Carnforth, Grange over Sands, Ulverston, Cark in Cartmell,Dalton in Furness, Broughton in Furness, Millom, Seascale,Drigg, Sellafield(was Windscale). More smaller stations but you get the idea.
We are hoping to do the Settle to Carlisle route sometime soon, probably after the school holidays when it maybe isn't quite as busy.

August 21, 2008

Birthday suprises:) and zebra socks finished

Wow did I have a great mail birthday today:)
Lots and lots of cards, email and rav greetings by the dozen and presents:)) A wonderful way to celebrate my birthday.
We went into Lancaster this morning to meet up with my daughter and grandsons for coffee and cake. A trip on the bus so Mr Mog didn't have to drive. A little look around the charity shops and then home:) Didn't want to do too much today as we both want to be well for tomorrow and the rail trip.
the zebra socks are finished. I really enjoyed making these, the absence of colour made a change.
Then I opened my mail and look what came.

From Maylin a fabulous Green Man card and some hand dyed yarn for me. It is a 100% BFL aran weight and Maylin dyed it for me. The colour will stripe in long stripes like Noro does. This will be going on the needles tonight:) Thanks Maylin
Vicky and Perran sent me a lovely moggie card and some different yarns to add to my creations:) Thank you both:)
Blue Witch sent me a card that is a copy of one of her paintings, couldn't you just lose yourself in those trees? Oh and as you can see at the front of the picture - honey:) Would that we lived nearer as I love this honey . Thanks BW:)

Then this cutie came from my SP:))

Lovely gifts and I do also appreciate all the greetings, thank you everyone.

August 20, 2008

Zebras in the house and a trip to a watermill





I'm nearly finished with another pair of hospice socks. These are zebras and it makes a change knitting with black and white yarn.
Mr Mog visited the doctor on Monday and he has arranged for a full set of blood tests next Wednesday .Hopefully this will reveal the cause of the excessive tiredness and also why Mr Mog is so emotional. There aren't any alternative forms of the hormone tablets. It would seem to be those or back on the monthly injections which made Mr Mog much worse. Oh joy:(
Yesterday saw us visiting Little Salkeld watermill near Penrith and what a delight it was. Not only a fully operational watermill but a delicious organic tearooms as well. The watermill, is from the 1700s and has been restored very sypathetically. It is surrounded by spectacular scenery and the Settle to Carlisle railway line passes close by.
Lots of hens and ducks count it as their home also. The food is all made fresh on the premises and in fact while partaking of a meal you can watch them baking bread and other goodies. Mr Mog and I had green pea soup with mint and lemon which was very tasty. This was accompanied with 4 different types of bread and a pot of butter. Half the bread was still warm and all of it was very yummy. Add to this a pot of tea(leaf tea) for Mr Mog and a cafetiere of coffee for me and we were full.
We took away 2 different types of the organic flour for breadmaking.
At around an hour away from us it wasn't too far to travel. We called in at Larch House nursery on the way back but didn't see any must haves in the plant line.
You will notice there aren't any photographs of our visit, that is because we forgot to take the camera with us. We will be going back when the flour runs out so pictures then. I do urge you to check out the website though, it is worth it.
Tomorrow is my birthday, 56 already. Where did the years go to? We are going into Lancaster to meet up with DD and our 2 grandsons. Nothing else planned yet. Friday weather permitting we are going to go for a train ride along the coast from Lancaster to Whitehaven as there is a special rate Lakes rambler that allows you to travel twixt Lancaster and Workington by train, use any lake district bus and take a steamer ride on Windermere. All this for the price of £15 or £10 with appropriate rail cards. The train journey will do for us as we have long wanted to take the coast trip.

August 17, 2008

No Wales trip:(

We didn't go to Wales this morning after all. Mr Mog isn't too well and very tired and the long journey would have been much too much. He hasn't improved at all in energy levels or well being with these hormone tablets so it is off to see the doctor tomorrow to ask if there is any alternative(but I don't think there is) and if there is anything he can take along side the hormones to minimise the tiredness and the depression. Also to minimise the soreness to his breast area. He was so low this morning and typical Mr Mog worrying more over letting me down by not taking me to Wales than over how he felt. I feel so helpless, I am trying to remain cheery and lift his spirits but it is hard when he is so low. We ended up ringing my daughter and going to meet them in Bowness for lunch. That was a trip in itself despite being only 40minutes away. Bowness + summer holidays + lake windermere = h&ll. Not easy to find a space to park but we did eventually and had a gorgeous lunch in Aunty Vals, simple well cooked delicious food and not too expensive. He is a little better now thankfully.
We can go to Wales another time, we have a standing invite which is fabulous of Anne and Tony.
I'm thinking a couple of days out this week, maybe train journey along the coast to Workington for starters. We have a cheap day trip option here which allows unlimited train and bus travel for the day around the lakes plus a trip on lake Windermere. It would mean no driving which would be good for Mr Mog also.
So here I am still:)

August 14, 2008

Socks, birthdays and butterflies:)


Finished my socks from the yarn Anne gave me , don't they look gorgeous? Done with magic loop again:) It felt strange making a pair for myself but I will enjoy wearing these.
Have had no email since Tuesday lunchtime due to virgin and their problems:( This afternoon I can access mail via the web only which helps a little. Wondering if it is time to change my ISP.
Mr Mog had his birthday today and we had a lovely trip to Williamson Park and the butterfly house. Pictures on his blog for those interested. We then had lunch in our local Italian restaurant. A blessed day to enjoy after the year of turmoil and upset.
We are having a few days in Wales courtesy of Anne to ride on some narrow gauge railways and meander here and there. That will be our joint birthday gift as it is my birthday next Thursday. Been very wet this past few days and dismal. I was going to do some dyeing and indeed I think tomorrow I will as I now have my squirty bottles with lids to keep the dye in.

August 11, 2008

Feeling better and Mr Mogs birthday

I am feeling so much better today thank you :) Bug has gone and the early night last night has helped a lot.
Mr Mog celebrates his birthday on Thursday and if you all could send greetings I'd really appreciate it. A lot has happened in the year since his last birthday,and I didn't expect to be so optimistic as we are. It has been a long year and in lots of ways horrible so to have something to celebrate is great.
thanks again

August 10, 2008

The moebius they are finished:)



Phew, I've finished the 2 moebius. Oh did I not tell you I made another? Went to stay with friends last night and thought I'd take some of the mohair I dyed and a circular needle. My new knitpicks harmony option of course from my SP:)
What to knit, should it be shawl or what? I thought I'd cast on some stitches and see if I could do the moebius cast on off my own bat.
Here is the result. The pink one is huge but is ok wrapped twice round the neck, the misty mohair is perfect as a neck warmer. I didn't want to do just plain garter again so did bands of knit and purl. Not stitched in the ends yet or blocked but I love the finished effect.
As I said we were at friends for the night. We had a great time until I woke early morning with sickness, tummy bug and fainting spells. Spent rest of night in and out of bathroom and several times lying on bathroom floor as I didn't dare try and get up. I'm a lot better now just queasy but we are home. I didn't want to go to bed so thought I'd get Mr Mog to photograph the moebius and show progress.

August 08, 2008

Works in progress including Moebius:)



I cracked it I think, we will know better once it comes off the needles. Here you see my very first Moebius wrap in progress.
It took more tries than I care to mention to get the hang of casting on and I almost gave up many times. What a swine it was to try and loop the yarn over the needles correctly. I've got the 2 Cat Bordhi books on magical knitting from the library but the pictures did nothing to help me . Some kind people on Ravelry sent me links to 2 videos on casting on and after watching them a few times (VBG) I had a go. Talk about cack handed though. It looks messy in the middle which is where you cast on but overall for a first attempt I'm pleased. Would I do much moebius stuff? Not sure but its another thing to master isn't it? I cast on what seemed enough to go round the circle and that was it, if the thing is too big, no probs it is a test piece after all.
This is the almost finished fire shawl. Hopefully today I'll get to the border and there in is another new technique to try, I'm going to bead the edging(hopefully) using a piece of wire, beads and the technique ArtisAnne taught me
Watch this space.

August 07, 2008

My wonderful wonderful SP:)) and the sun is shining:)


look what my wonderful SP sent me today:) I am so lucky and I've cast on already(3 times as I can't get the hang of the moebius cast on) I'm actually on with another shawl in the yarn I dyed at Anne's. Thank you SP, you couldn't have got me anything better:)) I love the needles and I now know why everyone raves over them:)
The sun is shining here today and it certainly lifts the spirits. I still can't get on to Ravelry properly, talk about withdrawal symptoms;)
Not much else, off to knit with my lovely needles:)

August 06, 2008

1st magic loop sock finished


Finished my first sock using the magic loop style of knitting. Really pleased with this sock and the time taken to knit it which compared favourably with the normal method of 4 DPNs.
Despite pulling the stitches off one of the needles TWICE I enjoyed knitting this way.
The second sock will follow in due course. I'm going to try knitting a moebius cowl first:)
Watch this space

Arte y Pico award

I have been awarded the Arte y Pico award by Maylin:) Thank you Maylin I really appreciate this. Although it has made me blush(GG)

I now need to nominate others so here goes.Firstly Blue Witch for her creativity, her passion and her garden.
second Ruth at Roobeedoo Her knitting, dressmaking and gardening skills are great. The way she and FL live with the trauma of his illness inspire me in many ways and helped Mr Mog and I through the radiotherapy and the ongoing side effects.
Thirdly Wye Sue. She spins, she knits incredible stuff.(ask her about her knickers) and still has time to travel countrywide extolling the virtues of the Knitting and Crochet Guild, teaching people to finger knit etc.
Fourth Artis Anne for her creativity in the face of illness and for sharing her skills in such a great way.
Fifth Jan the enthusiastic crochetoholic. for determination not to let her illness stop her from creating masterpieces in crochet and knitting, her kindness and her friendship.

It was hard to pick just 5 from the people who do inspire. Check out their blogs and say hello, you won't be disappointed.

Rules

1) You have to pick 5 blogs that you consider deserve this award, creativity, design, interesting material, and also contributes to the blogger community, no matter of language.
2) Each award has to have the name of the author and also a link to his or her blog to be visited by everyone.
3) Each award-winning, has to show the award and put the name and link to the blog that has given her or him the award itself.
4) Award-winning and the one who has given the prize have to show the link of "
Arte y pico" blog , so everyone will know the origin of this award.
5) To show these rules.

August 05, 2008

Is it a swiftor wool winder?Or what is it and how do I use it?



I've been given the above and told it is a wool winder or swift. Is it and how do I put it together and use it please?
thanks

Magic loop sock and Rav probs


Ta daa, the first sock I've ever done by magic loop:) Almost finished and Anne you were right it is easy to use 1 needle instead of 4.
I couldn't find any online instructions for doing the heel so I worked it out myself and so far it seems right. Very proud of this:)
Ravelry problems seem to be connected to Virgin for some reason. I did ring them last night and the girl I spoke to tried to get the site and just said it was down. However after hearing from Casey(code monkey) and various other folks in the UK it seems to be solely a virgin problem. Was able to get on earlier so we will see this evening when the problems seem to be.
A long day yesterday , we went to see Mr Mog's ancient parent and a meet up with friends who have just moved back here from France.
We had lunch with them at a place that used to be fabulous but of course we haven't been there for around 10 months. Guess what it has changed hands and is up for sale again. The food was terrible and the coffee worse. Shame as we had recommended it for our friends.
Don't you just hate it when things change for the worse?
But the journey through the lakes was great, views very clear and it did lift both our spirits.

August 04, 2008

Anyone else having trouble getting on Ravelry?

I've not been able to access Ravelry since yesterday teatime. Keep getting a network time out, page load error. I've tried with firefox and Internet explorer to no avail, yet some of the messages are coming through bloglines so I know it isn't totally down. Is it just me in UK?

August 02, 2008

my next project:)



my next project will be socks for me using this yarn. Hand dyed by the talented ArtisAnne who now sells yarn and fibres from her Etsy shop MamaMi
Autumnal socks don't you think? I'm going to try:)) and make these using magic loop so wish me luck
It never ceases to amaze me how different yarns look in the skein and wound ready for use. Looking forward to seeing what pattern emerges from these