knitting, poetry and all the other important things in life...

Saturday, 23 June 2007

New socks, new book and things to do

I've been waiting for the new Interweave book "Favourite Socks" for ages - but, with brilliant timing, it arrived earlier this week, just after I finished the Marigolds. I've had some apricot-y Trekking yarn sitting around for ages, and I thought it was perfect for these lovely Embossed Leaves Socks:

The 2" twisted rib was a bit onerous, but I think it will look great when they are finished. They are quite pretty-pretty and rather cute - no doubt I'll wear them on one of my girlier days. The pattern is quite simple despite being over 16 rows. Here's a close-up so you can see the leaves and stalks:

On the whole I am a bit disappointed with the book - I was expecting more variety of toe-up socks, but there are only a couple, so I'm stuck at the moment as to what to make with the lilac yarn on my previous post. The yardage isn't great and I panic about running out mid-foot!

This weekend is the Ted Hughes Festival in Yorkshire- just heard about it on the tail-end of the Today Programme on Radio 4. If only I'd known before, the fiance and I could have had a little break - sadly, we've got other plans.

Tomorrow, my favourite shop is having a happy 7th birthday cocktail party - I got send a really cute invitation in the post. There are so few great independent shops in the Birmingham area, but this is a real gem - really friendly staff and different stock all the time, really lovely things for gifts and beautiful original clothes. Happy Birthday 'People'!

I have a long list of things that I MUST do this weekend for the wedding - starting with booking a hairdresser so that I don't have my usual unruly mop-top on the big day. I suppose I should get on and do some of them...

Tuesday, 19 June 2007

Marigolds finished!

I am so happy with these socks - great pattern, wonderful yarn that compliments it beautifully and a really great fit. I've really improved my short-row heels and toes too - the first one, which I didn't think was too bad at the time, now looks shoddy in comparison to the second.

You can't really see the stitch pattern too much in that photo, so here's a close up of me with my feet up the wall!

I'm at a bit of a loose end as to what to start next. I made a tiny bobble hat for the Innocent Drinks/Rowan/Age Concern campain, but with the best will in the world, I'll need to knit other more substantial things as well.

I've got some gorgeous sock yarns lined up for my next project, both from the Natural Dye Studio on

I'd quite like to use this lilac-y one for some Pomatomus socks, but I'm not sure that I'l have enough. I think I've 340 yards in total, but the pattern asks for more - any suggestions? I don't have the confidence to try and transform it into a toe-up sock, not yet anyway. I also have 2 skiens of 'Orange Glow' Blue Faced Leicester Yarn - the same yarn as I used for the Marigolds - it reminds me of a packet of Refreshers - can you still get those?

I'm waiting for a copy of Favourite Socks by Ann Budd from Amazon - perhaps I will hold out and see if there's something great in there. I love my new Marigold socks anyway - I'll need them if it carries on being so rainy.

Monday, 18 June 2007

Stuff I like (to divert my thoughts from stress and worry)

I should be posting later about a finished pair of marigold socks. If only I could concentrate for long enough to complete the final six rows of twisted rib! Things have been quite stressful and chaotic this weekend - if anything it was a relief to get back to work today - but I'm not feeling that great.

To cheer myself up, I thought that I would share some things that I've been coveting lately.

These lovely new Birkenstocks:

These very nice Puma trainers:

Lots of yarn on ebay as well as the long list of books, cds and dvds in my wishlist on Amazon. I've had a basket loaded with things from get knitted (they stock lots of hard-to-find yarns) for weeks, but I'm holding out til pay day. That's one of the problems when you are saving for a wedding - and the wedding is only 8 weeks away.

Thursday, 14 June 2007

One sock done!

Yay! I completed the first marigold sock the other day and immediately cast on the second. I don't know where I've found the time this week - parents' evening last night, dance practice (for staff v/s students 'Strictly Come Dancing' - we need a LOT of practice!), taking my Nan to the hospital today (good news) and completing a set of reports for my Year 7 class. Too much. I guess that's why there's no picture to go with this post. Perhaps by the end of the weekend I'll have a complete pair to show off...

Saturday, 9 June 2007

I love these socks!

I was off sick from school earlier this week (you can't teach with a sore throat so bad you can't speak) so decided to use some beautiful hand-dyed yarn from the Natural Dye Studio to make the lovely Marigold socks. Another first for me - a toe-up sock!

I managed to just past the heel on that first day and have virtually finished the first one now:

I really must get a new camera, because I'm just not doing justice to the beauty of the yarn - the colours range from rose to a honeysuckle yellow with quite a bit of peachy-apricot too. It is quite a bit thicker than the other sock yarn I've used, but the socks will be perfect snuggy winter socks or will make great house socks for when I'm feeling the chill.

The pattern is really straightforward - easily memorised, although I do need to work on my 'wrap and turn' - it's the first time of used this technique and one side is distinctly "less nice" than the other.

Recently finished 2 - Monkey socks

These were my first pair of lace socks - and I'm really really pleased with them. Everyone seems to be knitting Monkey at the moment, and I can see why.

I'd memorised the pattern by the end of the second repeat and they grow really quickly. I used some grey Trekking yarn from my LYS that was 25% bamboo. You don't notice the bamboo most of the time, but the yarn is beautifully soft yet feels hardwearing, so I guess that is something to do with it. The colour isn't great, but I think I'll get loads of wear out of them in the winter. Here's a picture of the socks in progress - you can see the lace pattern a bit better.
I think they'd benefit from being blocked but I've no idea how to block socks - the same as everything else or somehow 3D, if you know what I mean. If anyone out there knows, please let me know!

Recently finished 1 - leaf t-shirt

I said that I'd finished lots of things lately - so I thought I should perhaps take you on a quick tour, starting with my favourite garment.
A couple of weeks ago I finished the lovely leaf t-shirt from knittingschooldropout.
I used Rooster Almerino aran in custard - a gorgeous yarn that I will definitely use again.
I am delighted with it - I'd only knitted a couple of garments before (sticking to bags and scarves etc on the whole) and if I'm honest, I didn't really wear them at all, but I've worn this about four or five times already.
If I made it again I'd make it a bit smaller - the instructions are for a "snugg fitting garment" so I over-compensated a bit and made it a bit too big. It's a great simple pattern though.

First post

This is my first post - I'm home alone while the fiance shakes his ass on a stagweekend in Minehead (not the fiance's stag weekend, that comes later). I've been thinking about starting a blog for ages - I've enough FOs to shake a stick at and I love reading loads of other blogs, so I thought I'd use my free time this weekend wisely... or not.