I’ve been beavering away here at camp Peeko for the last few weeks but despite an increasing busy schedule I’ve managed to keep my goal of making time every day for personal knitting and I’m really enjoying it. Not only am I getting through more projects than ever, I’m getting more and more immersed in the yarnie world and becoming more aware of all the wonderful indie designers and dyers out there. With so much going on at the moment though and the fact that I’m useless at keeping a weekly blog I’ve decided to scale the posts back to monthly and break the posts into sections. So without further ado, let’s get into it!
I have 2 projects on the go at the moment, which goes against my 1 at a time rule but I have my reasons! I wanted to use the remaining 2 balls of Debbie Bliss Rialto Lace that I had in my stash which led me to one of favourite things, searching on Ravelry. I had already heard about Tin Can Knits through the Shinybees podcast and other knitters so when their ‘Bonny’ pattern popped up in the results I was eager to give it a go so I bought the ‘Handmade in the UK’ e-book (why buy one pattern when you can buy a whole book?), which features 10 beautifully designed patterns, from socks to cardigans, all designed using yarn from British spinners and dyers.
So off I set to cast on the swatch for Bonny but for some bizarre reason I decided to start with the recommended needle size. Now, I’m a tight knitter and always, without fail, need to go up at least 1 needle size from what’s recommended so I don’t know what madness took over me that day but off I started with my 3.5mm needles to knit the gauge swatch, all the while looking at it thinking “no way is this going to right” but somehow thinking that because it’s merino blocking will sort it out. So I cast it off, washed it and pinned it out. I had nothing else on the needles at the time and was itching to knit something so I went back to my stash and took out a skein of Rowan Fine Art Sock Yarn and cast on ‘Thistle’ a beautiful lace scarf, also from ‘Handmade in the UK’ (more on this later!) It’s just as well I did cast on something else because it took 3 swatches to get the right gauge and eventually I was able to cast on ‘Bonny’ with 4mm needles.
Bonny is knitted in the round from the bottom up and for a 11″ is just stockinette stitch, another reason I’m glad I had another project on the go because I would have gone mental just doing a knit stitch in 2 ply yarn for that long with nothing else to keep me interested! I’m just at the start of the lace panel now and after so much St st, each lace row is a little bit of excitement in what is otherwise an extremely therapeutic knit.
At the same time I’ve been working away on ‘Thistle’. The pattern calls for 7 repeats of the Thistle lace pattern, I only knit 5 as I was about a 3rd of the way through my yarn at that stage. I’m about 2/3rd of the way through the whole scarf at the moment, and although the Thistle lace pattern required a bit of concentration, the remainder of the scarf is a nice and easy repetitive lace pattern.
I’ve finished a couple of projects since my last blog post. I finished my Sorbet shawl just before my daughter’s communion and it matched my dress (from Banteay Strey Boutique) so both myself and my little lady were sporting our handmade lace shawls on the day.
I also started and finished 2 beaded projects as part of the Shinybees Rewind KAL. First is a pair of beaded socks from an old issue of Let’s Knit which I knitted in the same yarn as my last pair socks. Between the beads, the lace, the cables and the self striping yarn, they’re a bit mad but I love them.
The next beaded project I finished is another shawl for my little miss. This time a knitted one – Angry Dragon by Maylin Tri’Coterie Designs. This is fab pattern and although at first glance it appears a bit pricy, you are getting a lot in the pattern. It is included in an e-book of her well known Wingspan shawl, which not only gives you the original pattern, but a full detailed description on how the shawl is constructed and how you can alter the pattern to your own needs. Not only that, you get three fab variations of the shawl, of which Angry Dragon is one. I knitted it using a ball of Rico Superba Poems that I had in my stash and about 1000 pink Toho beads. I’m absolutely delighted with how this turned out and my daughter loves it.
Classes and Plans
I started up Beginner Knitting Classes in June and I have 2 more planned for the summer. It’s been great to see so many interested in picking up the needles and, although I don’t want to give away too much, let’s just say that I have lots of exciting plans for September to get even more people knitting, crocheting and lace making. Watch this space for more! There’s still time to get in on the summer classes and I’m running an offer for the first class free so get in contact to book your place!
Other than the yarn and patterns that I’ve already mentioned in this post, my knitty love of this month is The Golden Skein Yarn Club. The Golden Skein is run by the lovely Jo Milmine from the Shinybees Podcast,which very recently won the award for Best UK Podcast, (I strongly encourage you to go over and have a listen!). Every quarter, 3 yarn dyers from around the world get sent a photo which they draw inspiration from to create unique and exclusive skeins for the club. My birthday present from my lovely other half was a subscription to the club but I had to wait until this week to sign up. So on Friday I was eagerly awaiting the email to say I could join, I was even on the site trying to put through my order before poor Jo actually had a chance to list the new memberships but I’m now a proud member and absolutely cannot wait for the Autumn quarter to begin and for my yarn to arrive so I can squish it. If you fancy treating yourself to some seriously fabulous yarn, I highly recommend signing up, and a little birdy told me that the Autumn quarter is set to have some wonderful yarnie goodness. You only have until the 7th July to sign up though so get your knitty asses over to www.thegoldenskein.com to sign up.
I have no affiliation with the designers or businesses mentioned in this blog. They are completely independent reviews and recommendations.