A little knitting in this heat

Hi there, how are you doing? I hope you are enjoying your summer whether you are working or on vacation. Here in Europe we are suffering this amazing heat wave and I’m starting to crave a little cooler weather. Not cold weather, just a little less hot. Too hot makes knitting difficult (sweaty hands).

I am not yet on vacation so I’m just knitting some around my work schedule and after work.

Since last week I have managed to finish two items that I would like to share with you.

First there is my Main Street summer tee by Pip and Pin. This is now all done, washed and blocked. This was a fun pattern and I think I just might make a second one in a different yarn later. I might make the second version a little longer as the pattern calls for a somewhat cropped tee. And as there are less than 30 projects for this pattern on Ravelry I entered mine into  the Unsung Heros kal being held by Amber of the Yarn Hoarder podcast.

I also managed to finish my first pair of Stitch Surfer Socks also part of a kal this time being run by Michelle and Leslie of the Knotty Knit Wits.

This is a very fun sock pattern and it actually goes quickly. I was not able to mirror the socks as I wanted so I have now cast on for a second pair.

Here is pair number one:

 

I’m now knitting a smaller pair for my youngest daughter. I’m using the same solid yarn as in my pair and then a self striping yarn from Biscottes Yarn.

IMG_1577

This time around I’m hoping I will understand the instructions fully and be able to make the socks mirror each other.

I also finished another pair of socks a while ago and just never got to show you  a picture of the finished pair. I had knit sock one as part of a test knit and then had cast on for the second sock only to then set it aside in my mountain of wips.

I finally picked it up again and finished the second sock and I’m so happy with the finished pair. The pattern is just amazing. It is called Narcissa Socks by  Jo Ann Klim.

The yarn is Hippo for Thanksgiving by Lolo Did It.

I am still working on my Milu shawl. I’m now only 4 garter ridges from cast off so that should be done later this week. I really love the colors and yarns I chose for this project and I’m sure I will give this shawl lots of use come winter.

mila 24jul

This pictures gives you an idea of the color palette I chose even if it does not show the pattern well. It is all scrunched up on my needle.

So this week I’m hoping to finish the shawl, make good progress on my second pair of Stitch Surfer socks and also work as much as I can on my secret sweater test knit. Even if the sweater test knit is in a DK weight it is taking it’s time to knit, I think because it is knit in pieces and my purling takes longer than knitting stockinette.

I have until August 12 to finish and I’m almost at the shoulders on the back piece. Everything else is waiting to be knit so I  have to hurry up some to meet the deadline.

Other than that, not much news to share. I’m still running the giveaway I launched last week. Do join in and leave a comment and possibly win a personalised gift from me. You can find the details in my last post here I’m back

I hope you are doing well and enjoying your knitting in spite of the heat for those of us that are living through a heatwave:)

Thank you for stopping  by again and spending time with me. Take care and happy knitting till next time.

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My first ever fandom project

Hi there, how are you today? I hope you are doing great. It’s Friday today and the weather her in Normandy is beautiful, warm and sunny. According to the weather man that is not going to last and the weekend and even all of next week is supposed to be gloomy and grey! But lets not think about that and just enjoy the sun while its here:)

Today I want to tell you about my secret custom dye project that I have alluded to before.

So this is a very fun project that I’m working on with two friends that I met two years ago now at a show in London. The three of us are collaborating on a gorgeous knitting kit that will be released early July. The theme, as you may have guessed from the title of todays’s post, is fandom related. To be precise, its Gilmore Girls fandom related. So if you are a Gilmore Girls fan or if you just like nice things, you are going to be interested in this kit. It’s going to be quite exclusive as only 30 kits will be sold so when they’re gone, they’re gone for good. The pattern itself will probably be published later on but I don’t think there will be a repeat for the project bag and as for the yarn, well it is such huge work I’m not sure I’ll repeat it either except if we get a huge response in which case we might have to reconsider the exclusivity. But that’s a “problem” for later.

So as you may have gathered already the kit will include:

a Gilmore Girls themed sock pattern by CC of Java Purl Designs

a project bag by Sam of KnitRunDig

and hand dyed yarn by yours truly

and some little goodies for surprise

The yarn is a 10 colour self striping yarn. One stripe/colour per character in the Gilmore Girls.

It has been and still is a lot of fun to prepare this kit and it’s the first time I ever participate in such a collaboration and I’m very happy and proud to be a part of this because I’m a huge fan of CC’s designs and I own a number of project bags by Sam and I use them all the time. So I know that this kit will be high quality all around.

Dyeing the yarn is very time consuming. I’m not used to do a lot of self striping and I don’t think that’s something I’m going to develop simply because of the time involved and because I’m such a small dyer that I think it’s not really worth it for me. So that makes this particular yarn even more special.

Here are some pictures of the preparations

So this kit will go on pre-order on the Java Purl Designs website as of June 12th and CC has added the exact times for a large number of time zones so you can check that out as of now to be sure to sign up when pre-orders open up.

I do hope you will sign up for this kit and maybe we’ll organise a kal around this too, I have to check with my friends and I’ll let you know but that might be fun.

And on the subject of kals, don’t forget that I’m hosting my first ever kal this summer. Kick off is June 1st and it will run to August 31st. I’m calling it the Knitting in France and Nancy kal because it’s hosted by me (Knitting in France) and it is for any of Nancy Whitmans patterns.

I have finally decided on which of her patterns I’m going to knit (first – I think I might do two during this kal). I have dyed up some yarn and I’ll be sharing that with you very soon. I will be sharing info on the kal here on the blog but the kal will live in my group on Ravelry and that is where you should sign up. I have created an information thread and a chatter thread already. Later there will be an FO thread of course. And there will be prizes at the end to make things even more fun! The prizes will include patterns, yarns, stitch markers and a project bag! These are the prizes I know of so far but who knows, there might be even more depending on how many participate. So check it out and I hope you will join in.

That’s all for now. Have a wonderful weekend and I look forward to talking to you later:)

The Nancy Whitman and Knitting in France Summer Kal

Today I’m going to share with you my plans for this summer and my first ever kal, that is the first ever kal that I personally host.

It is super exciting to be hosting a kal and I hope I will be up to the task and that others will join in the fun. The idea behind the kal is to work on something beautiful and have enough time so as not having any stress related to the knitting. A pure pleasure interlude during our summer.

The kal starts on June 1st and finishes on August 31st. I have created 2 threads in my Ravelry group one to share the information about the kal and a chatter thread. I will be opening an FO thread later on. Here is a link to my group on Ravelry for you to join if you so wish.

There will of course be prizes. I love prizes and even though I very rarely win anything I still have hope:) So depending on the number of participants we will have X number of prizes. The designer herself, Nancy Whitman, has agreed to donate some patterns and I will be donating yarn and hand made accessories and if you would like to donate a prize that would of course be wonderful.

The rules for this kal are very simple:

  1. no wips allowed
  2. only patterns by Nancy Whitman can be included in this kal

Nancy Whitman has a number of gorgeous designs, shawls, cowls and socks.I have shared some of them here before and if you missed my interview with Nancy just click here and read it now before joining in the kal.

These are some of her shawls.

Personally I’m going to knit a shawl and I own a number of those by Nancy including the three shown above. I currently have two contenders which are

  1. Ganz  ganz nancy whitman

2.  Tappan Zee

tappan zee nancy whitman

Both shawls are gorgeous and it’s not going to be easy to choose and I think I might possibly just knit both so I don’t have to choose. We’ll see if I have the time or not. At the moment I leaning slightly more towards Ganz but not sure yet. Ganz is knit with a sport weight yarn but I could probably use fingering also and Tappan Zee is in fingering. I have a ton of fingering yarn in my stash but not so much in sport weight so should I go with the Ganz I’ll have to do some dyeing which will be fun.

So what do you say? Do you want to join in this kal with me? I will be sharing info here on the blog but mostly the kal will live on Ravelry so if you want to join you should join my  group there.

I have created a special coupon/discount code for those who want to join the kal and want to buy some of my yarn to knit their project with (of course you are welcome to use the code even if you are NOT joining in the kal). So this code is valid as of now and until June 15th and will give you 15% off your purchases. The code should be used upon checkout and is: THENANCYKAL

 

That’s all for today. Thank you for stopping by and I hope you will join me in this summer kal for some relaxed knitting and sharing.

Youpi! I’m in for round 5

Hi there, I hope you are doing good and enjoying a day off from work – that is if May 5th is a public holiday where you live. It is a public holiday both in Iceland and France so I’m enjoying a day off from my “real” job but I have a very heavy schedule for my shop and dyeing. I have two custom dye jobs in the works for two different knitwear designers but I can’t tell you about those just yet. Just know that something very exciting is happening behind the scenes:)

Now yesterday I cast off my socks for the Sock Madness competition round 4. It was a pattern with lots of charts for lace and beads. When I first discovered the pattern I got worried that I would probably not be able to finish in time to qualify for the next round. But luckily I was wrong. The pattern was a joy to knit and in spite of all the charts, it actually knit up quite quickly. I can really see myself making a second and even third pair from this pattern. Here are some pictures of my socks.

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I really love the heel on these socks. What was new and unusual for me was the cast on and the heel/gusset construction. If you like knitting socks, you should definitely check out this pattern on Ravelry, just click here.

I knit monogamously on this pair of socks because I was so afraid I wasn’t going to make it to the next round. All in all there are 7 rounds. Next round, round 5, only half of each team will make it to round 6. This time around 20 out of 30 knitters in each team made it to round5. And next time only 10 of those 20 will make it to round 6. That is probably where I’ll have to leave the competition. In round 6 only 1 out of 10 members per team will make it to round 7 which is the last round and will count only 1 knitter per team. I know I can’t win because there are knitters that seem to knit at atomic speed and I can never do that – too much life in the way for me. But I’m very happy to have made it this far and IF I were to make it to round 6 that would be a real victory to me.

Are you participating in this year’s Sock Madness? Or have you ever participated? I’d love to hear if you have and what you thought of the experience and how far  you got. Do share:)

So once this pair was done, rather than pick up my wips, I of course cast on for another pair of socks! This time for the Coffee with CC kal that Vegan Jilly of The Knitting Broomstick is hosting.

I’m knitting all the sock patterns in the book as they appear and then I’ll end with the Coffee Date Shawl. So now it was time to cast on for the Espresso Macchiato Socks

This pattern calls for a self striping sock yarn. I had chosen 2 different yarns and showed them in my video review of CC’s book. I began casting on with the yarn I had hand dyed and it didn’t feel right so I ripped that out. Unfortunately I did not take a picture before I ripped it out so I can’t show you. Then I chose to cast on with the handspun yarn.

coffee with cc pattern 2 - 1

The yarn is lovely but the color changes are not regular enough I felt – after all this is handspun so I have no idea how the rest of the skein will knit up. And so I decided that this was not it. I did not rip it out though and I still have this on the needles and I just might finish this anyway or just rip back to the end of the toe and do something else.

Then I decided to choose a different yarn. I picked up a yarn by Turtle Purl, a beautiful yarn with stripes but…

coffee with cc pattern 2 - 2

There is much more grey than the other colors so I’m thinking that the pattern would not look like in the book if I only do the patterning on the red stripe. There would not be a lot of patterned rows. So again, I decided that this was not it. I did not rip this out either but left to the side and I have yet to decide if I’ll knit this anyway or just rip out to the end of toe section and do something else like I did with the handspun trial.

And then last night I cast on for yet another try. This time I chose a yarn custom dyed for Jo Milmine of the Shiny Bees podcast. It’s a self striping red, yellow/white. And I think this time I’ll call it good. I quite like how this is knitting up and because the stripes are quite large, I’m doing the patterning once per stripe and I think it looks quite nice.

coffee with cc pattern 2 - 3

What do you think? Are you joining in the Kal?

And on the topic of Kals, would you like to join in a summer kal? I was thinking we could knit one of Nancy Whitman’s patterns which you can find here and the kal would run from June 1st to August 31st and on September 1st I would draw a winner from an FO thread. I would prepare a  nice prize bundle and maybe someone would like to donate something as a prize to make it even more fun. Let me know what you think.

Well, that’s all for today. Have a lovely day and a wonderful weekend ahead. Speak to you soon:)