Rounding Up

Yikes how long since I blogged?

I thought I’d spend a little time sharing some of my knitting from last year. It’s that time when we look back and review and look forward and plan, and if you’re like me desperately try to find the one strategy that will allow you to be more organised!

So to look back I went to my Ravelry Projects page to look at the year’s knitting, only to realised that a lot of it didn’t make it on to my the page – so I went off to try and resolve that issue. I also realised that despite feeling like I knit more and more, this year really was impacted by the house move and subsequent DIY schedule that has eaten into weekends and evenings. But the highlights?

Cottage tea cosy

I agreed to knit this as a commission to raise funds for the Blackpool Knitting Group to help towards the cost of the bus to Harrogate for the Knitting and Stitching Show. It wasn’t a pattern I’d have chosen for myself and the pattern itself had a few problems and needed some substantial alterations. There were also all the fiddly details and embellishments that meant it took a lot of self discipline to stick with it. But it was finished and handed over on the town hall steps in a manner that looked not unlike a quick drug deal and the recipient was thrilled. Indeed her enthusiasm for it made up for all that french knotting and duplicate stitching.

teaccosy1 teacosy2 teacosy 3

Much awaited Manu

Yes, a cardy for myself, started Easter 2011 did get finished this year – in stages. Even after all the knitting was done it waited a while for buttons. I was finally prompted into sewing them on once the weather turned cold and I really wanted to wear it. It still hasn’t been blocked but has become my favourite house cardigan and has spent many an hour in front of the computer. I love the yarn – Rowan Lambswool Tweed which was given to me by a friend for whom it was too woolly – yes, such people do exist! It’s a beautiful tweedy purple with such a depth of colour. The Manu Pattern is by Kate Davies contains many of the details and design elements that make Kate’s pattern fun to knit and a pleasure to wear. But still no pictures of this I’m afraid…

Gay Bolero

I loved this pattern the minute I saw it in Susan Crawford‘s A Stitch in Time Vol. 2, and bought the Excelana Yarn at the Harrogate Knitting and Stitching Show 2011. The yarn is a absolute joy to knit with – it has a wonderful hand. The stitch definition is also amazing as are its thermal qualities. Just a short bolero, it’s surprisingly warm and always garners compliments.

bol1bol3

Diamonds are Forever

Another Susan Crawford pattern, this time from Coronation Knits and another I fell in love with straight away. But, well, there has to be one knitting disaster in a year and it was all my fault. I took this on holiday thinking it would be perfect for knitting whilst not paying much attention – which it would have been if only I’d remembered that I needed a different sized bottom to top, but I continued knitting blithely on rather than making the transition and now the bust is too large and I don’t have the wherewithal to fill it. However, I love this jumper so I’m contemplating steeking and seaming to make it fit and touting it around friends to see if there’s anyone it will fit nicely who will love it similarly and then I can knit myself another – properly this time! Here it is in progress:

diamonds

Then towards the end of the year, having decided I wouldn’t be knitting lots of presents this year, and having knitted lots of things not pictured for the Blackpool Knitting Group Stall at a Craft Fair the first weekend in December, I had a brainwave and started knitting presents:

The friend who gave me the wool used in my Manu, also lent me her copy of Nicky Epstein‘s  Knitting in Circles and I was itching to try out some of the patterns. This was just at the point when we got a last minute invite to Sunday lunch with family who have just moved to Yorkshire and I suddenly needed a housewarming present at short notice:

heat pad1 heat pad2

The top is the Corona pattern and bottom is the Burst pattern. Inside is a piece of carpet underlay sandwiched between two discs of green felt and lightly stitched together around the edge. I then placed the two knitted circles together and picked up and knitted around the edge in the cast off stitches – just the two halves of the cast of stitch that were nearest each other – with the darker green cotton. Then I cast off these stitches using an I-cord cast off. I was pretty pleased with the results and so were the recipients and I plan to make a second for our next visit.

First Christmas Jumper

Goodness me! Another Susan Crawford Pattern Junior Christmas Jumper – this time knitted for my great niece. Nieces and nephews generally get a jumper/cardy/jacket for Christmas until they get too big and this was my great niece’s first Christmas. I loved knitting this pattern. Despite being knit in 4 ply – I chose King Cole Merino Blend, available from our new LYS which opened this year – It knitted up nice and quickly, but then I was only doing the 1 year size. The pattern was super easy to follow and I love patterns where you have to knit the sleeves first and join them to the body before knitting the yoke – minimal sewing up and no surprisingly time consuming sleeves to knit after you think you’ve done all the hard work…

erin

Em’s Pikkuveli

This was a rather late decision and thank goodness it was knitted in Cascade 220 worsted yarn. Again the sleeves are done first and the body was cast on as we headed down to Dorset on the 23rd. It was completed at approx 11.30pm om Christmas Day ‘ready’ for gift giving on Boxing Day. I say ‘ready’ because I left the buttons behind, they’re now on their way to my Mum in the post to be sewn on and Em is already wearing her jacket .

emma

Oh and then there was my little burst of Kate Davies Inspired Gift Knitting Activity:

gifts

Here we have a Sheep Carousel teacosy and 2 Snawheids. I loved the Snawheid pattern especially. It’s perfect for last minute gift knitting as it knits up so quickly and I love the crown pattern, perfect for the snowy weather we’ve had.

snaw1 snaw2b

Last year was quiet on the pattern publishing front, again with a flurry towards the end of the year. 2013 looks more promising however, with a couple of patterns almost ready and an exciting project forthcoming…


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