Dyed in the Wool
A dyed-in-the-wool knitter shares mainly fibre-related information, updates and musings (with the occasional moan about the weather!).

I was just frontin'

Friday, March 25, 2005
Brigitte now has a back, two matching sleeves and a front left pocket! Ooh, it can't get much more exciting than that, can it?

Take a look at this:

And this:

I know: thrilling, isn't it! All I have to say is thank ITV1 for the James Bond season. Two hours of solid knitting time. I have seen all of the Bond films at least once, and would watch all of them again (with the exception of "Moonraker" - yuck!). I always wanted to be Bond when I was a little girl (of course, an intelligent, non-philandering, sensible, female version).

I've done the tension "square" for Martha and all is OK; right gauge on the right needles. I don't actually appear to own a pair of 2.25 mm bamboo needles, so a pair of 2.5 mm will have to do! Being the miser that I am, I ripped the tension square back as soon as I'd finished it, so no pictures I'm afraid.

My plan for the fastening of Martha is to use press studs (a.k.a snaps), as wonderfully illustrated by Bonne Marie here. However, I'm a little reticent because I don't like the idea of punching holes in my knitwear (I always have one eye on ripping back and reusing the yarn at some point in the future). I might still do the press stud thing, but use the sew-on ones, therefore negating the holes (I hope!). Or, I could do a more traditional knitted-on buttonband and therefore I'd only be punching holes in a small amount of yarn. Just thinking out loud again!

In sock news: I'm just about to change from the green stocking stitch to the purple in rib and then I'll be done!

On a little additional note: I was doing some website house keeping and I launch I.E., just to check that it rendered correctly. Well, it didn't :o( - none of the pictures were displayed. So, this is now fixed and I apologise to anyone who didn't get to see project pictures of the links I posted. If there are any problems, just leave a comment or email me. But be gentle - the internet has changed so much since I first started using HTML about 10 years ago!
1:53 pm :: 0 comments ::

AmyP :: permalink

Oh, Martha: why did they name you thus?

Saturday, March 19, 2005
No, not that Martha ...

... This Martha.

I've joined the "Martha-along" hosted over at Jessica's place.

It's all Bonne Marie's fault : See the 10th of March entry. I already had the magazine (courtesy of my Rowan International subscription) and I nipped over to Jannette's Rare Yarns on eBay, spied some discontinued 4-ply cotton in Olive, and away I've gone.

Whilst waiting for the yarn to arrive I did this:

A quick test in some baby acrylic to get a "feel" for the pattern. I think I'm going to like this. I've had to upsize (like I normally have to) but I don't see this being too much of a problem.

I have to confess that until she was "banged up in chokey" I'd never heard of Martha Stewart (apart from a passing reference in "3rd Rock from the Sun"). I think the closest we come to her in Britain is Delia Smith (but on acid).

In sock news, I now have these:

Well, actually a bit more now, but you get the idea! Funnily enough, considering all of the problems I've had with the stashbuster socks, the numbers work quite well for doing the gusset increase/decrease as the child's small size. I'm hoping that these will fit my mum perfectly. It's a certain birthday and, quite frankly, these socks are going to be the best thing she'll get (apart from the triple chocolate cake that I am now the master of). I'll be making her a cotton long-line cabled cardigan, but since the yarn is currently somewhere over the Atlantic, that ain't going to happen any time soon!

The back of my gargantuan cardigan (a.k.a. Brigitte) is now done, and I've cast on for the left front. Lovely pictures soon.

Ta-ra for now!
12:15 pm :: 4 comments ::

AmyP :: permalink

Here we go again :o(

Sunday, March 13, 2005
The stashbusters have been frogged - again. Not all the way, this time, but just back to the straight row section.


Here's yet another "before" photo:

My mum's feet are smaller than mine: fact. My mum's feet are wider than mine: fact. Somehow, she manages to wears the same sized socks as me. Weird! So, I was working the socks as the Women's Medium width, but the Women's Small length. Big mistake! Should have trusted my instincts. The pattern is fine; in fact it's really well written. It's just me.

So, I've cast on for some simple toe-up bi-coloured socks in DK wool. I'm going to knit like fury from now until the end of the month. The stashbusters will once again become mine.

Ideas, suggestions, encouragement? I'll take it all.

The bunny-along slippers are going well (especially since I'm making it up as I go along). I'm just about ready to start working in the flat for the heel/cuff combo. Since I'm an "Earth Goddess" kinda gal, I was aiming for a pair of Spring Equinox bunny slippers. However, I've just realised that it's on the 20th of March, whereas Easter is a good seven days later. I think I'll stick to the original finish date! There will probably not be any photos of these until they are finished (or almost finished), since the yarn doesn't show up at all well in pictures, and a blob of black, fluffy stocking stitch is hardly exciting!
7:00 pm :: 0 comments ::

AmyP :: permalink

Boring, but important

Friday, March 11, 2005

Today in the UK it's "Red Nose Day" a.k.a. Comic Relief. This is a day when supposedly well respected and sensible thespians make complete fools of themselves in order to raise bucket loads of money.

The money goes to Africa and within the UK. It helps support AIDs orphans, the elderly, child soldiers, ... the list goes on.

It is a biannual event, the brain child of Richard Curtis (he of "Four Weddings and a Funeral" and "Notting Hill" fame) , and hosted by Mr. Dawn French, Lenny Henry.

Without donations from the public and businesses, none of this would be possible. As they say: give as much or as little as you can. As little as £1 can give a child in Africa one meal, everyday, for a week. We use one pound coins to put in shopping trolleys so we don't nick off with them. £1: that's nothing, really.

I'm not made of money: hey, I'm a student! But I think even I can stretch to a quid.

I'm sorry if this appears to be a rant, but in the wake of the £300 million that the British public raised for the tsunami appeal, I hope that this giving mentality continues for a very long time.

Donation link: http://www.rednoseday.com/donate/index.shtml

Normal service will be resumed shortly! I promise.
11:40 am :: ::

AmyP :: permalink

A Secret Pal strikes!

Thursday, March 10, 2005
I have been gifted!


Four patterns (including one for a catnip mouse that I know my neighbour's cat will go mad for), plus a "Julia Robert's Hat" that I like the slouchy look of.
Also, a journal/blank "ideas" book covered with what looks and feels like hessian and which contains handmade-look paper. I'm thinking that this might be the ideal book to catalogue my knitwear in. The only coherent record I have is this blog and my webpage.

The fabric in the background is a wrap-skirt that my maternal grandmother brought back from Malta. Although what Zulu shields have to do with a Mediterranean island, I don't know.

Oh, and secret pal - best not risk anything drink or food like, just in case "the Authorities" have tea sniffer dogs out in force! Besides, I'm much more French in my beverage-tastes anyway (coffee and chocolate, all day, everyday). And the kind of music I really don't like: trash-metal, mindless hardcore dance tunes, and opera in languages I don't understand (i.e. anything other than English, or bad English!). Music I do like: Green Day, Lemar (British artist), Joss Stone, Maroon 5, Faithless, Franz Ferdinand, Missy Elliot, Outkast. (Green are those whose albums I've worn a groove into - or I would have if they weren't on CD).

In knitting news: I've cast on for a little fun project.

I defy anyone to be able to take a good picture of Sirdar Snowflake Chunky in black. Anyway, they are bunny slippers, for the Bunny Along. I plan on doing a fairly conventional toe-up sock/slipper thing, knitting some ears, embroidering on a nose and adding buttons for the eyes. I plan on making the ears detachable, for sensibility and washing purposes. A project page will be forth coming.
7:37 pm :: 0 comments ::

AmyP :: permalink

Two steps forward, one step back

Monday, March 07, 2005
Well, progress has been made on Brigitte and the Stashbuster Spiral socks, and I've also cast on for "Blaze". However, the work done on the socks was all for nothing in the end. I didn't check my tension (slap my wrists!) and I ended up getting 9.5 sts/1" instead of 8 sts. I also worked out that I would need about 100 rows to make the length of my foot! It was at that point that I check the pattern (oops!).

So, anyway, I took a picture for posterity:

And the new (better for me) toe:

Short row, garter stitch, 64 stitches in total.

The progress on Brigitte has been all on the back (wow - 54 cm has never seen so long!):

And casting on for one sleeve from Blaze:

With flash:

With daylight lamp/without flash:

I can't seem to get a good picture of the "Zeal" colour of the Rowan Calmer. It appears to suck the light into itself and makes me go a bit ~#][{/> (there doesn't appear to be an appropriate word in English, so that will have to do). The link to the knitty.com pattern is here.

I hope to have the first sock done by the middle of next week, but we'll see. In the meantime, I'm learning more than I ever needed to know about TB and syphilis (part of my university work, not a hobby!).

Edit: if, in the past, you've wanted to leave a comment but not been a member of Blogger, you had to leave an anonymous comment. Well, they've now changed it so that even if you don't have a Blogger account, you can still leave a comment as "you". Just chose "other" from the choice of three in the comments box that pops up. Much better! Comment away, dear reader.
7:07 pm :: 3 comments ::

AmyP :: permalink

Round, round, baby, round, round*

Tuesday, March 01, 2005
Well, I'm now in full possession of all the necessary yarn to make my Stashbuster Spiral Socks!

I've made it up past the toe (although I remain to be convinced that it's the best toe for me) and I'm about to start on the wondrous jogless spirals.

The red blobs are my very own beaded stitch markers and the jagged, yellow blobs are a couple pins holding the socks in place.

And this is how I'm attempting to keep everything in hand:

I'm failing miserably! I have to untangle everything every other round, so I'm thinking of going back to a disorganised mess on the floor!

All the low-down on the socks (yarn, needles etc.) can be found on my "Socks 2005" page.

In other, more exciting, news I've had my first knitting pattern published! It is the top-down hat I made for my brother at Christmas. Lovely colour picture here. No money, but plenty of kudos! It's in the March 2005 issue of "Slipknot", the magazine of the Knitting and Crochet Guild. There's a link on my side bar if you want to join up.

I wanted to end on a humourous note, so here goes:

This is a metal pencil case that I use for my knitting "odds 'n' sods". On the back it says the pattern is called "Frogs in Tomato Juice". As a vegetarian, eco-warrior, nature-lover I find this sickeningly funny!

Oh, and I'd like to say "Thank you" to my secret pal for indulging my paranoia about the whole SP programme (last year I sat timidly for two and a half months without a word and then an Angel had to be dispatched). Whoever you are, you are lovely!

*Lyrics courtesy of the Sugababes.
6:39 pm :: 0 comments ::

AmyP :: permalink