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September 2015
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November 2015

October 2015

Wave Cardigan - Voila

Oh how I love this cardigan!

Wave side

Kim Hargreaves doesn't dissapoint. Her patterns are well written and accurate, she uses colours that show the pattern in a good light and her books are beautifully styled. This book, Echoes, is exquisite! There are 21 patterns and I have plans to make at least 5 of them.

Wave finished

The drape of kidsilk haze makes this a very luxurious and elegant garment. Knitted on a 9mm and 4mm needle gives this an interesting fabric. It was odd at first but very quickly felt quite natural.
The pattern calls for blanket stitch joining (or your preferred method), I tried blanket stitch for the first time and it worked very well on this project.
There is very little shaping on this cardi, no armholes to make and no decreases on the sleeves. so in that respect it's a good beginner pattern however the yarn is very unforgiving if you make a mistake.

Wave front band close up

I was nervous to press the pieces before joining but it is necessary to get a flat edge to work with. Lots of firsts and learning while making this.

Wave hand

I can't wait to wear my new cardi......maybe this weekend!

Happy day to you all.

Ciao xx

Starting something new

and joining Ginny with Yarnalong.

I started the Whispering Island Shawl on Monday having finished Wave Cardi on Sunday (sharing photos on Friday!).

I love how Helen writes and sets out her patterns with a little tick box for counting off your rows. It's most helpful!

Yarnalong 28 10 2015

Still reading The Kashmir Shawl and still not managing early nights. It's frustrating because I am so enjoying the book but just not getting enough time to read.

My husband would like a knitted jumper so i'm on the hunt for something really nice. I've seen a few on Brooklyn Tweed that I love, now just need him to choose one. I bought a(nother) shawl pattern this morning to make out of some leftover yarn I have. Not sure I want two shawls of the same colours so I may gift it. But then again, I may not ;)

I shared photos, yarn and pattern information on Monday for the Lavender Fields blanket here.

So looking forward to this weeks yarnalong inspiration!

Ciao xx

Lavender Fields blanket - Voila

Here she is.....Lavender Fields ripple blanket!

Lavender Fields on chair

I am so chuffed with this blanket! I love the 'hole' detail of the ripple which gives the fabric a pattern that means the simple colour scheme works really well.

Lavender Fields close up

So lets talk logistics:
The pattern can be found, for free, here. Thank you Le Monde de Sucrette! Inspiration for this blanket is here, thank you Esther! The yarn is Scheepjes Stone Washed XL and is a cotton/acrylic blend. There is no 'acrylic squeek' with this yarn and it is soft soft soft!
I used a ball each of accent colours, Black Onyx, Deep Amethyst and Lilac Quartz and 20 balls of the main colour, Smokey Quartz. I got close to 5 rows from a ball of yarn, so have very little of the 3 accent colours left and about half a ball of the main colour. I wasn't brave enough to play yarn chicken with this project.
I used a 5.5mm hook and although the fabric looks 'close' it is still drapey. There is a good weight to the yarn and it's very warm, it was lovely to work on as the weather turned cooler :)
The pattern is worked over a multiple of 11 stitches + 3 so I started with a chain of 146 (that is (13 x 11) + 3 = 146)

Lavender Fields hanging

I made it as a snuggle blanket and happy too that it fits a single bed.

Lavender Fields on bed

I squared off the ends using a variety of stitches. I didn't write them out as everyones tension is a little different it's better to just trial and error to get the right fit for you. I then did a row of half trebles (UK) on each end to add a tiny bit more length and a round of half treble to finish off.

It's all ready to be wrapped up for Christmas, I just can't wait to gift it!

My WIP list is looking like this now.....

Izumi wrap - FINISHED
Chloe's Christmas blanket - FINISHED
Kim Hargreaves Wave cardi from ECHO book - FINISHED
Pebble beach shawl - have yarn, would like this finished for spring 2016
Whispering Island shawl - HAPPENING RIGHT NOW
Folded - at the shoulder decrease, had an issue and had to frog. Would like this for winter 2015
Larch in alpaca - at the assembly stage, would just like it finished
Island crochet top from Rowan Savannah Collection book - have yarn, started, would like it finished for summer 2016

You may notice that Wave cardi has been marked as finished. Yes it is done and ready to photograph!! Woo Hoo! It's so gorgeous. Update on Friday ;)

Happy Monday

Ciao xx

Wave Cardi Progress

and joining Ginny for yarnalong.

It's a grey miserable day here in Hertfordshire and I would love to be curled up on the sofa, under my duvet with a bowl of popcorn, mug of hot chocolate and the Back to the Future boxset! But alas I am at work, feeling like a little germ has made it's way in and a cold is coming. I can't let a cold eat into my knitting time though!

The back and fronts of my Wave cardi are done. Sleeves are currently being worked up together. This is such a lovely simple knit, as there is no armhole shaping and the fronts had very simple decrease on the front edge.

Yarnalong 21 10 15

I can't wait to start assembling! My goal is to finish the sleeves by the weekend so I can block the pieces and be ready to start putting this beauty together early next week. Still on track to finish by the end of October.

Speaking of October deadlines, I need to photograph Lavender Fields so I can share the details. If you're looking to make blankets for Christmas this pattern and yarn is a must. In fact i'm thinking of a blanket for darling husband for Christmas! Not that I really want to add anything else to my WIP list.

Not much reading done this week. Still trying to get an early night and more than a couple of pages read before nodding off.

It took me ages to get through all the blogs shared for yarnalong last week. I'm so glad I did, because there is such wonderful inspiration on those blogs and I have to try very hard not to add the projects you're all doing to my Ravelry library! (I did add a few this week, YIKES!!)

Over the weekend I unpacked my autumn capsule. It's been six months since I packed these clothes away so it was lovely to see them again and I am looking forward to the weekend and choosing an outfit. Although I was a little sad packing summer away in a drawer!

Happy Wednesday :)

Ciao xx

Another thing ticked off

Love that i've ticked another project off my WIP list!

Izumi wrap - FINISHED
Chloe's Christmas blanket - FINISHED
Kim Hargreaves Wave cardi from ECHO book - Happening now
Pebble beach shawl - have yarn, would like this finished for spring 2016
Whispering Island shawl - have yarn, would like this for winter 2015
Folded - at the shoulder decrease, had an issue and had to frog. Would like this for winter 2015
Larch in alpaca - at the assembly stage, would just like it finished
Island crochet top from Rowan Savannah Collection book - have yarn, started, would like it finished for summer 2016

There is a project that i've been working on for a few years but had an issue with shaping and serious lack of confidence. What i've done so far is on my dress makers dummy taunting me and daring me to bite the bullet and get over my issues. It's one of those projects that I can see taking shape and makes perfect sense in my head but the actual doing seems impossible. Over the past few weeks I have been thinking about it quite a bit and a little time on the internet and Pinterest has given me a few practical ideas. I want to do it and I know I can and will.

Progress wave 16 10 15

I'm not going to add it to the WIP list as it's a bit of a surprise but once Wave cardi is done i'm going to focus my energies to get this one nailed!! Watch this space.

Happy weekend.

Ciao xx

Wednesday progress

and Yarnalong with Ginny.

Lavender Fields blanket is off the hook! Yesterday I squared off the top and tail and did a neat round of double crochet (US SC) to finish it off. There are a few ends to sew in, thankfully not as many as there would have been with colour changes! I am thrilled with it. Photos and mini review of pattern, yarn etc to come.

Yarnalong 14 10 15

And today I am back on the Wave cardi. I usually knit fronts and sleeves together but was nervous this time as you knit with a double strand of yarn. That means I have four strands of yarn coming up to the needles and plenty opportunity for a major tangle!

Yarnalong 14 10 15 2

I love baskets for my projects but worry about the yarn snagging so use drawstring wash bags to keep my working yarn safe. These have come in handy for this project!

Still working my way through 'The Kashmir Shawl'. I'm really enjoying it but late nights and only a few pages before sleep makes it feel a bit bitty. Do you know what I mean?

I didn't intend to leave a whole week between posting, this past week has certainly flown by. The good news is that I am settling into Autumn and my skin has quietened down at last. The beauty of the season has not escaped me though and yesterday afternoon driving home from work I was reminded that although my body doesn't like Autumn it really is a spectacle of colour. As the sun lowers in the sky the light changes and the colours of the leaves are so vibrant. The early mornings and evenings are turning bitterly cold although once again, this week we have had some lovely clear skies and reasonably warm midday temperatures. I'm so looking forward to lighting the fire and curling up with my cosy knitting.

Pushing to finish Wave by the end of October.

Ciao xx

Rainy days

and cosy knits. Joining Ginny for Yarnalong.

The 5 extra balls of yarn for Lavender Fields blanket didn't arrive before my weekend road trip but have been dispatched now. I am so looking forward to getting back to this blanket and seeing it finished. I really do love this ripple pattern! Thinking of a blanket for darling husband in this same pattern and yarn in shades of green.

So I have been making progress with the Wave cardigan. I am loving the uneven knit, it seems so natural to use two different size needles and I love that it grows quickly with the fat 9mm needle. There is no armhole shaping and only a few rows of shoulder and neck shaping so a very basic knit. I'm about 15cms off finishing the back.

Wave 07 10 15

I don't want to leave the knitting on the needles so i'll finish the back then continue with the blanket, although there is plenty time before Christmas I will feel better when it's done.

Wave close up 07 10 15

Setting a deadline of 31st October to have both the blanket and wave cardi finished.

I'm still making my way through The Kashmir Shawl. It's slow going, with a few late nights this past week, i'm only getting through a few pages before my eyelids are too droopy.

We've had plenty of rain so far this week, which is a change from the weather we experienced last week. Thankfully we had gorgeous weather over the weekend for the rugby. Newcastle was an amazing host city! We had a great time.

Rugby 1
Rugby 3
Rugby 2

Stuart was very popular in his kilt and 'Jimmy hat' and was stopped for his photograph so many times that he joked about needing an agent! Good times :)

Happy British Wool Week!

Ciao xx

The changing season

This week we have had the bright warm days of an Indian Summer...

Indian summer definition

But there are signs that Autumn is here and the early morning chill reminds me that these days will not last.

Autumn 2015

Autumn is a hard season for me. My body reacts to the changes in a negative way and I find myself unsettled and agitated. My sinuses constantly feel blocked and sore and my skin itches and feels prickly. The eczema in my ears flares. My scalp tingles and my hair goes from feeling dry and brittle to lank and greasy in a matter of hours.

There is a pull towards winter yarn craft and log fires but I want the warmth of the sun on my skin just a little longer. I fight the need for socks and Uggs, preferring to wear Birkinstocks and ballet flats. Cardigans and jumpers are required for the morning commute but by lunch time I am too hot. The changable weather across the day is unsettling and I feel flustered and uncomfortable. Rain makes the air feel muggy and my shoes soggy.

I don't sleep well and dark mornings make getting up for work that much harder. I long for the weekends so I can hide under the duvet until it is light and warm.

I'm never quite in a good routine but in these Autumn months it seems impossible to find a good footing. Always chasing my tail and feeling like every room in the house needs attention. I re-learn the rhythm of being indoors while longing to be outside.

Oh how I look forward to Winter so I can look forward to Summer.