For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb
Psalm 139:13

Thursday, 20 August 2015

when knit becomes crochet

*Sings blog post title to the tune of When 2 Become 1*

Anyway. You know I started knitting an orange jumper absolutely AGES ago? Well, it didn't last. I finished the back then lost momentum altogether. I became convinced I'd gone wrong, then I couldn't even remember which size I'd started making or which needles I'd used. It was clear the project just wasn't going anywhere. 

Oh, knitted jumper, we were never meant to be. 

When we moved (not that I've mentioned that AT ALL), I came across all the delicious orange Merino I'd bought for the jumper. Sigh. It then occurred to me that it might be a whole lot simpler to frog the back of the jumper and make a whole different garment with the yarn. Maybe a really easy crochet garment? Yay - new project excitement! So here's what I'm making instead. And it's a joy. I've learnt how to work three treble clusters and (with some help) I kind of understand the pattern. Does this make me crafty bilingual? 

I'll keep you updated with my progress. In fact, I've got a few train (or replacement bus) journeys ahead of me and I want to get my blue shawl done next month. Hopefully there'll be another FO around these parts soon! 

Have you had any frogging/ yarn reincarnation experiences of late? 

Monday, 10 August 2015

look up

Something beautiful and unexpected can really help to shift your perspective.

Over the weekend, I headed to the park and saw these beauties sailing quietly over the city. It dawned on me how fortunate I am to live in a brand new place that I've barely explored yet. Mr P was away, we don't know many people here yet and I had been feeling as if we'd barely had any time to settle in together. I just needed something to help me realise what an adventure that is. I'm just as free as those untethered balloons and can begin the process of falling in love with a new city.

Putting down roots, joining stuff, finding our favourite local this and that, sharing it all with friends and family, getting lost, being touristy and sometimes not being here at all – it has started and there'll be more to come. I'm sure.

If you wanna see more balloon goodness, fashion bloggers She and Hem (they're local lasses) shared this brilliant vlog of the Bristol Balloon Fiesta. Up, up and away!

Monday, 20 July 2015

off the hook: doily t-shirt rug

Another side effect of moving home is nesting syndrome. 

The new gaff is a bit of a blank canvas and feels awfully shiny and modern after having spent a couple of years in a crumbly Georgian building (waaaay fancier than it sounds). Consequently, each day I'm battling a compulsion to festoon everything with yarny gubbins. And sometimes I give in. 

When I came across some forgotten cones of super-chunky jersey t-shirt yarn while unpacking, I knew they were destined to be a giant doily rug! Pinterest came up trumps and I settled on this free crochet pattern from the Crochet in Paternoster blog. I was after something really pretty and lacy to balance out the bulk of the yarn and this pattern was perfect. It was really easy to follow, despite being in US terms, because it's in step-by-step form with an image for each round.

This was my first time using jersey yarn and it was a lot easier that I thought it was going to be. I was expecting to really wrestle with it, but it's incredibly stretchy. I used a 12mm crochet hook and just shy of two cones of yarn. It's only 12 rounds, so it's not as big as I would have liked (62cms across), but I am happy with how it looks. Perhaps if I'd had more yarn I'd have adapted the pattern and made it bigger. For now our hallway is suitably spruced and I'm thinking of crocheting some yarn baskets with t-shirt yarn. Can anyone recommend a good pattern? 

Wednesday, 8 July 2015

where books belong

We've just moved home.
We're knee deep in boxes and I'm indulging in the sheer joy (see also: endless frustration) that is finding a place for everything. A couple of days after we moved in, I woke up at 6am (why body, why?) and spent a delirious three hours arranging and re-arranging our little blue bookcase. I gleefully sorted the books by subject matter and theme, then stacked and wedged them onto the shelves, plugging any gaps with Russian dolls. When I'd finished, I settled in the armchair opposite the bookcase and soaked it in. I cannot begin to describe the bizarre sense of satisfaction this activity provided. And of course I was immediately seized with the compulsion to re-read ALL THE BOOKS. To date, aside from the kitchen, that lovingly-arranged bookcase remains the only part of our flat that's actually sorted. It's a happy reminder that everything belongs somewhere, if only we can take the time to figure out exactly where that is. 

It takes a while to get to know a new city, but I feel like perhaps we are well-loved volumes that have finally found their place on the shelf. 

Tuesday, 30 June 2015

if I sits, I knits (and an FO)

I'm guessing you're familiar with this particular kitty meme. In the vein of 'If it fits, I sits', I've adopted a brand new approach to my knitting: if I sits, I knits. It's basically the idea that there are very few places where you can't knit (see Stephen West's #placeswhereyoucanknit hashtag on Twitter or Instagram for inspiration) and that you can be way more productive if you really use every opportunity to knit. Too early to meet a friend? Get your knits out. Queueing in the post office? Knits out. In the last week I've consistently knitted through my commutes and lunch breaks, knitted in the bank, queueing for a spa and at the theatre. Obviously there are some limits. It's pretty difficult to eat and knit at the same time and I draw the line at knitting on the loo (although I have contemplated bath knitting - can it be done? Maybe if I had some sort of floatation device for my WIP?). 

Either way, I've found this really works. With this mindset, I've made loads of progress on my much belated Crafts from the Cwtch Makealong shawl – I hit the 60% mark this week! Wanna see?

And the even better outcome is that I actually finished something! The Honey Honey hat from this post. Yes, it took ages and there was a definite disaster week when I went wrong and thought all was lost, but that scrummy honeycomb texture makes it all worth it. Plus, found the perfect home for that little ginger alpaca pompom from TOFT. Love it. All the details are on Ravelry here

Thursday, 18 June 2015

Worldwide Knitting in Public Day 2015

Saturday was Worldwide Knitting in Public Day and I must admit I have a soft spot for these sort of things. In fact, I started writing this blog (way back in 2009) as a way to chronicle my knitting in public adventures. 

These days, knitting in public is a daily occurrence for me. It's become pretty standard. My commute is a great time to get a few rows or rounds in and accordingly I always have a yarny project with me wherever I go. Train knitting, pub knitting, bank knitting, queueing for anything under the sun knitting - that's my whole deal.  But a special day when yarn crafters all over the globe can unite in a shameless attempt to publicly make the world a little more woolly? I'll be there with bells on.

Bath's Fashion Museum was hosting knitters for the morning to celebrate WWKIPD and to launch the Bath branch of the Knitting and Crochet Guild. I grabbed my WIP (Helen Stewart's Pebble Beach Shawlette in Shilasdair Luxury 4ply) and headed over. 

The museum was appropriately decked out in knitted bunting and inside there were already groups of friendly stitchers getting stuck in. I saw some familiar faces and met some new knitters, too. There were experienced knitters on hand to share purls of wisdom with newbies, lots of info about the Guild and a stack of rather awesome vintage patterns up for grabs from the museum's exhaustive archive. We merrily knitted away in the elegant Card Room until noon. It was the perfect way to spend a rainy Saturday morning. I'll be keeping an eye on the museum's Twitter account to make sure I hear about future knitty events.

How did you celebrate WWKIPD?

Thursday, 4 June 2015

Wedding ring pillow in Simply Crochet

Just popping in to share a quick ta-da moment with you.
I designed this wee wedding ring pillow for the latest issue of Simply Crochet. It's my first ever proper printed project and it's so exciting to see it for reals! Watch this space for more chatter about the design, but for now, here it is!

The pattern is in issue 32, which is out now. Have you seen it? That mermaid and the baby cardi are definitely on my to-make list already.

P.S.  We finally found a new place to live (yay!), but now moving craziness ensues! So if I'm not here, I'll be cleaning, packing, rejoicing about a shiny new space, etc. Catch you soon!

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