The Mountain of Wips

It’s time I told you about my mountain of wips. A while ago I was inspired to do something about this after watching Jilly of the Knitting Broomstick talking about how she tackled hers.

I keep a part of my stash in my bedroom and that’s also where my Mountain of Wips has been formed. It wasn’t on purpose, it just sort of happened with time.

I’m constantly working on a million projects at the same time and constantly giving in to the urge for a new cast on. Then there are projects that must be done or maybe there is a deadline and so other things are put aside for a few days which then turn into weeks and even months. Little by little the pile grows and grows until it has taken on a life of its own it would seem.

My pile had just taken on this ugly image of a pile of bags of all kinds and just looked messy and unorganised…which it totally was. I also knew that I might not want to knit everything that was in there. And I also new that some of the bags did not contain wips but projects to be – a skein of yarn, a pattern and a needle. Ready for me to cast on. But somehow I just hadn’t gotten to do so.

img_7400-1

The plastic boxes on the right house part of my stash and as you can see there are a number of project bags all over!

There was no method to this madness so I just took one bag at a time and looked at its content. If it was an actual work in progress I then decided if I wanted to finish it or rip it out. I admit I only ripped out very few wips.

All the bags containing “to be knit” projects were emptied. I put the yarn back into the stash box and put the pattern aside for future use and the needles back in my bag of needles.

I wanted my pile of wips to be just that, no piles of ready to go knits. I don’t need those. I just get everything ready when and if I want to cast something on.

So after going through all the project bags this is what I ended up with.

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It’s not a very good picture but at least you see there is now only one project bag on the floor. The rest fits in my bin. (since the picture was taken I have added one big “to be knit” bag but it doesn’t count because it is a necessity for Sock Madness).

As for the contents of the remaining project bags, here’s the list:

2 cowls

3 shawls

2 pairs of gloves – one is fingerless and it is my oldest wip ever!

2 cardigans

1 pull over – which is sooo close to being done!

1 scrap blanket – the Pinwheel blanket by Mina Philipp – I have a few squares done

10 pairs of socks! Yep that’s right, 10! Most of those are half done, that is one sock done and the other only just started.

I have decided that I now need to work on a wip at all times. I’m allowed to cast on for new stuff BUT I also have to choose a wip and work on concurrently. This way my Mountain which is now back to being a pile will slowly turn into just an extra project bag or two. (It’s ok to dream).

It may not look like much of an improvement when you compare the two pictures, but it actually is! I now know what I have waiting and getting all this done is no longer overwhelming. I know I can and want to do it. It’s just going to take time but that’s ok. Knitting is  supposed to be fun and that’s how I like it.

As I’m writing this Sock Madness 11th edition has just launched which means that my knitting time will be concentrated on that and nothing else will be worked on except in between rounds but when that is done, I’ll be back to working on my pile of wips.

So you also have a mountain/pile of wips that needs sorting and working on? Or have you maybe already gone through it and come out a winner? I’d love to hear your thoughts on the matter and how you organise yourself. Please share by leaving a comment below.

That’s it for today. Have a great weekend and until next time, Happy Knitting!

The sun BURNS!! Remember!!!!! Arg!

Hi there, today I’m working in the evening and on days like that I sometimes go to the beach and today was such a day. I went with my mum and nephew who are on vacation here for a few days.

Today the weather was not super hot and when we went to the beach late this morning the sky was partly clouded and the wind was fresh and I sat there knitting away in my polar fleece sweater and shorts. And I guess the Icelander in myself has just not yet understood that my skin is super fragile and if I’m going to spend ANY time at all on the beach, no matter what the weather is like, I MUST lather in SPF50 or more! Of course I omitted this today and now the fond memory of knitting on the beach is completely forgotten and the torture of skin on fire has taken over EVERYTHING. I’m even having problems working as the only thing I can think of is how much my legs hurt! ARG! How stupid can I be!!!! Promise, I will NEVER again knit on the beach WITHOUT my super sun block protection!!!!

I hope you folks are more serious than I am and that you remember to take care of yourself when out and about in the sun this summer.

But all is not wasted, I  did get some knitting done! I’ve decided to do some tube socks for my niece and nephews and I cast on for the first pair yesterday and I got quite a lot done at the beach today. I’m using bits and pieces so the socks are a mismatch but I hope they will look nice once they’re all done.

www.knittinginfrance.com  This is the beach when we arrived this morning – looks like it was our private beach:)

www.knittinginfrance.com And here I am working on my tube socks and at this time my legs were still flesh colored:) Don’t you just love the bambi project bag? It’s from my friend Silvia of FridaJo on Etsy.

That’s all for now, I must go back to work and the pain in my burned legs is keeping me from any creative writing:)

Next time, I’ll be sharing a fun and free program with you – perfect if you like colour/fair isle knitting so stay tuned:)

Until then, take care and enjoy your week

Happy mail day

Hi there, yesterday was a happy mail day for me! As you know I’ve been going a bit overboard with project bags lately and seeing as I have a collaboration going with Silvia of FridaJo on Etsy I had to buy some more of her bags! So I had been looking at these 2 for a while and last week I just could not wait any longer and today I have them in my hands! And I got a bonus bag! Silvia generously gifted me with a little bag that I think will fit perfectly for sock knitting or maybe hexapuffs.

www.knittinginfrance.com So the bambi and red bags on either sides are those that I had been eyeing for a while and the one in the middle is my gift! And she even added a little owl charm to the tie! So beautiful! And once again, beautiful workmanship and super cute patterns. I’m a big fan. I also know that she is now working on knitting needle cases for her shop and I saw a picture of one for interchangeable needles on Facebook so you should definitely keep an eye out for those.

Also if you haven’t taken advantage of our special offer collaboration yet, remember that this is valid until June 30th. How does it work? You have 2 possibilities:

1) Place an order in my shop and you will get a discount code to use in her shop.  If you buy Fridajo bags for 25 Eur or more you get 10% off and if you buy bags for 35 Eur or more you get 15% off. Isn’t that nice?

2) Make a purchase at FridaJo and you will get a discount code to use in my shop (Knittinginfrance) If you purchase for 20Eur or more you get 10% off and if you purchase for 40Eur or more you get 20% off.

So I hope you will be able to take advantage of one or both of these offers this June and that way you too will have a great happy mail day too:)

That’s all for today. I hope you have a wonderful day and do tune in tomorrow because I have a little game/giveaway planned for you:)

More goodies for you my dears:)

Hi there, so I not only love knitting and spinning and dyeing and almost everything else to do with fibre crafts. I also love SHOPPING for anything and everything related to my passion! So a few days ago I shared with you my latest find in the project bag division- Fridajo on Etsy and I published an interview with her on the blog and she also generously offered to give my followers a special discount in her shop on all purchases over 25Eur as long as you order before June 30th! I do hope you did take the time to go and take a look at her shop and better yet, that you found something you were able to purchase and take advantage of the special offer.

Now I went ahead and contacted another company at the same time as I did Fridajo, only they took their time to come back to me. But now they have! The company in question is Slipped Stitch Studios. You may know them from Etsy where they still have a small shop but they are gradually moving all their business to their new website www.slippedstitchstudios.com

I actually heard about them when watching my new favorite video podcast, the Geeky Girls Knit podcast with CC and her daughter. They were showing off the needle nooks and project bags that CC has from Slipped Stitched Studios. And I had never seen a needle nook before nor had I ever hear of this company so off I went and took a look at their shop. Needless to say, I LOVED what they had to offer! And so I placed a first order via their Etsy site and sent them a little message. Not hearing from them again, I thought “oh well, they must be too big for a small blogger such as myself. That’s ok, I did try and that’s what counts”.

When I received my order, I was in love and immediately went back online and this time placed an even bigger order on their new website. That order has now been delivered and I’m very happy with my items! And just now, Laura – the owner and seamstress, just sent me a message to say YES she’d love to offer my followers a discount in her shop! Isn’t that great? I’m so happy that I can offer you this chance to get some of her products at a discounted price! I’m super happy that other companies agree to work with me and offer my followers special deals and I’m feeling super happy. So if you have a company you adore, let me know and maybe, just maybe, I could get us a special deal from them too! Who knows? Worst case scenario, they say no, but at least we will have given it a go:)

So now more on Slipped Stitch Studios. Laura sells the famous needle nooks which are a way to carry your dpns and wip in a secure and super cute fashion. The little nook also has a zipped pocket where you can keep your stitch markers safely and maybe even a small tape measure as well.  The nooks are bolstered so no worries, your dpns will be secure and not risk anything. On their website there is a link to see how you can use the nook for circulars as well for those who mostly use those. I’m a lover of circulars but I have tons of dpns and when I saw the nooks I just knew that I had to do some socks on dpns and use these! So here I am, 4 needle nooks later!

www.knittinginfrance.com www.knittinginfrance.com www.knittinginfrance.com

Laura also does project bags in different sizes, pattern wallets, spindle bags, swift bags, notions bags as well as accessories such as stitch markers and travel lanyards. The travel lanyards are a fun thing so of course I had to have one too! So you buy the lanyard and then choose your accessories. I bought the led light and the foldable mini scissors and then I added my own stitch marker holder and markers of course. Super cute!

www.knittinginfrance.com

I also bought a spindle bag. I had been looking for a spindle bag as I’m determined to take my spindles on vacation with me this summer. I had been looking for one but didn’t see anything that appealed to me. The bags were not sufficiently cute and did not seem quite functional with enough space for a spindle or two, my supported spindle bowl and some fibres and also the bags seemed really thin so I was afraid of damage. But Slipped Stitch Studios has a great version of the spindle bag which is a good size and allows you to securely carry your spindle as well as fibre when on the go and it is padded so no worries about breaking your beautiful spindle for example.

dwarf spindle tote www.knittinginfrance.com www.knittinginfrance.comwww.knittinginfrance.com  The dwarf bag I just ordered last night 🙂

And speaking of last night, I also was tempted to buy a studio tot which is a small bag that can hold my fibre or my notions or something else, I’m sure I’ll find good use for it.

studio tots dwarf

So, all in all a great shop with a large selection of items and lovely patterns. The workmanship is top notch and my items arrived in a timely manner. I’m very happy and confident when introducing them to you (if you are not familiar with this company already). I’m sure you will enjoy their items as much as I do.

So if  you are looking for a spindle bag or a needle nook this is definitely the place. You, my dear, as a faithful Knitting in France follower are fortunate enough to enjoy -15% off your next purchase from www.slippedstitchstudios.com as long as you place your order before June 25th. Happy shopping to you:)

If you do decide to take advantage of the special offers either from Fridajo or Slipped Stitch Studios, I’d love it if you shared that with us here by leaving a comment and maybe even a link or a picture of the item you chose. That way we can all enjoy the beautiful things and get a chance to show off our new goodies!

So until next time, have a great day:)

ps- rather than leave a comment I’ll just share here what I ordered from Fridajo last night:) Yes!!! Maybe that is enough project bags for this month!!! I have to restrain myself now or my husband will take my credit cards away!

furoshiki bag bambi bag fridajo Aren’t these super cute?

Project bags you need, love, crave, must have and a special discount code just for you

Hi there, today’s topic is project bags! Don’t you just love those? I know I do and for someone like myself, who always has a large number of projects going at the same time, project bags are really a must have to be able to keep each project separate from the others to avoid misplacing my pattern or looking all over the house for the ball of yarn I need to finish my project.

So yes I have some but not quite enough! So recently I went on a “window shopping spree” on Etsy and found this adorable shop there that does gorgeous japanese style project bags. I bought a couple and then decided that it would be fun to do a review here and share my find with you. I then contacted the owner/artist and interviewed her and she graciously offered a discount code just for my followers! Isn’t that just great?

So the shop is called FRIDAJO and you can visit her by clicking on the name. The shop is run by an italian artist called Silvia. Before I share my interview with her, I’d like to show you the bags I bought from her.

So she does something called Furoshiki bags which are knotted project bags and ideal for knitting and crochet projects. She offers those in two sizes, small and medium, and so I bought one of each. Project bags MUST be made from a cute, appealing tissue and so I went with what appealed to me most at the moment (and I have seen a few more which are on my TO BUY list).

First let me introduce you to my small Furoshiki bag. I chose a Matryoshka pattern which I find super cute. The inside is lined with a dotted beige pattern/tissue. The sewing is well done, no apparent seams that threaten to open up, no stray threads. Wonderful workmanship! This bag, as indicated, is small and so I think ideal for small (obviously) projects. Something like a small crochet project, socks, hexapuffs, granny squares – a project where you just need a needle/hook, 1 ball of yarn (or 2 minis), your tape measure and snippets and a copy of your pattern maybe. But for spinners such as myself I think this could also be a good idea for carrying your fibres. You could tie a knot and slip the bag onto your wrist and carry your fibre supply when spindling for example. So an allover lovely bag for SMALL projects. If you usually carry lots of notions and other stuff in your project bag then this will be too small for you and the medium size would be the way to go.

fridajo on www.knittinginfrance.com fridajo on www.knittininfrance.com fridajo on www.knittinginfrance.com fridajo www.knittinginfrance.com See, here I have put my bag next to 2 x 50gr skeins of Knitcircus yarn and I’m planning on using the bag for my Outlander inspired socks by CC Almond – you can find the pattern here

Next up is my medium sized Furoshiki bag. This time I chose a Fox pattern. I’ve been seeing a lot of fox patterns and project bags lately and I find them super cute, almost as cute as owls:) So that’s why I fell for this bag/pattern. The medium size bag is big enough for a shaw project for example and for when you knit a baby cardigan or something similar in size. I’ve put my Come What May shawl in there, along with the pattern, rest of yarn and my beads (yes I still have not watched the tutorial on russian beaded cast off so the shawl is still on the needles).

fridajo www.knittinginfrance.com  Isn’t this cute? fridajo www.knittinginfrance.Com See I have my shawl, pattern, rest of yarn and beads in there and they are not cramped, plenty of space. And the lining is beautiful. This makes for an elegant and yet fun project bag.

I was really happy to see that my new project bags are as nice in “person” as they are in pictures and I have no problem recommending FridaJo to you all. So if you are looking for a gorgeous project bag and like supporting a young and aspiring artist, go for it!

Now on to the interview with Silvia. My questions are shown in bold and her answers in italics.

Are you Italian and where in Italy do you live?

I’m Italian and I live in the North of Italy, near Switzerland.

Are you a knitter/crocheter and have you been doing that for long? What type of projects do you mostly do or enjoy most?

I learned to knit and crochet when I was very young, watching my mother and grandmother in the summer afternoons, in the big house in the mountains where we spent the holidays together. It was passion at first sight. 
I especially love knit socks,gloves and other small projects.
What about sewing? Have you been doing that for long and who taught you and what type of things do you mostly sew for yourself?
Also here there is the hand of my ancestors! My grandmother and her sister were young seamstresses when the ready to wear did not exist. Their stories and photos inspired me. They have given me the basics of sewing, then I enrolled at the University to obtain a degree in Fashion and Costume. 
Tell me about your shop, what gave you the idea for starting your own Etsy shop? When did you open the shop and how has it been going since? Do you have a full job and then work the shop on the side or is the shop your full time job? 
The idea of the Etsy shop was born because of the need to tidy up my knitting needles. I made a couple for me and then I tried to sell someone, and here I am. I remember the first sale took place on the day of publication of the first listings, and right in France! 🙂 I do this as a hobby, at the time, but I hope it will be my official work soon!

Any exciting information regarding your shop, venues where you will sell your items in person, sales, new items or anything else you want to share?

In the next days I’ll be able to sew new interchangeable knitting needle cases.
 
I’m glad to offer to your followers two types of discount, valid until 30.06.2015 for every knitting project bag “ready to buy” in my shop.
Using the code 10OFFX25 to get a 10%off with a minimum order of 25€
Using the code 15OFFX35 to get a 15%off with a minimum order of 35€
(not available for custom order)
 
Do you have your own blog and if so where can we find it? What about social media – do you have a Facebook page or Twitter/instagram/Pinterest account you want people to check out?
I don’t have a blog, but you can find me here:
https://www.facebook.com/fridajoshop (FOLLOW ME FOR DISCOUNT CODES AND NEWS!)
I hope you have enjoyed this post and that you will take a look at Silvia’s shop and hopefully you are able to take advantage of the special discount code she so generously offered you, my readers:) I know I’m going to be buying some myself because one can never have too many project bags:)
Do you have an artist/shop you particularly like and would like me to check out and review? Any suggestions would be welcome.
That’s all for today, I wish you all a wonderful weekend with lots of crafting time 🙂

KnitRunDig and JavaPurl

Next in my series of talents that I met at the I Knit Fandango show in London is the lovely Sam of KnitRunDig.  I met sam for the first time at the show where she shared a booth with CC Almond of JavaPurl.

Sam sews amazing project bags which she sells in her Etsy shop as well as at craft fairs/shows such as that one. When I went to look at her booth I saw a number of bags that I wanted to snatch up but being the serious person I am (hm hm) I decided that it would not be reasonable to spend all that I earned at the show to buy from other vendors or at least not until the end of the show:) So when I came back one of the bags I really wanted was gone ( it had super cute foxes) but lucky for me the other must have bag was still there!

Knit Run Dig and Java Purl This is the booth shared by Sam of Knit Run Dig and CC of Java Purl

Here’s a picture of the bag I got from Sam project bag knitrundig along with a current project. It’s a japanese tissue and just gorgeous! It has a ‘handle” which you can see on the right side of the picture and this allows you to carry the bag on your wrist for example if knitting on the go. It is large enough to accommodate a mediums sized knitting project. At the moment I have my ball of yarn, my pattern, a notions pouch and my shawl in progress and it’s perfect!

You can visit Sam’s Etsy shop here  Currently she does not have a lot of models in the shop but I know that she can do custom orders so if you are looking for a fun and yet practical project bag you should definitely contact her with your idea and I’m sure she can do the trick for  you:) Sam also blogs and has a video podcast which you can check out here.

Sam is friends with the fun loving CC Almond which you may know as Java Purl and together they are organising a knitting retreat in Scotland later this year and I’ll tell you more about that later.

Now on to CC – she’s an American living in Edinburgh, Scotland and she is an avid sock knitter and sock designer. You may know her as JavaPurl or have heard of her Doctor Who socks. CC has her own blog which you can visit here and together with her daughter Damaris she does a video podcast under the name Geeky Girls Knit. The podcast has lots of interesting features and CC being CC, it is also loads of fun to watch and you can take a look at her podcast here if you are not yet familiar with it.

In their latest episode they talk about the I Knit Fandango show in London and share the goodies that she brought back home with her – some of which come from my shop! On this note, I agreed to produce something for the goodie bags each participant in her and Sam’s knitting retreat will get this autumn. That is super exciting and good exposure for me. Also she loved my yarns and bought one for herself:) Can’t wait to see what she’ll do with it. I also gave her a skein of sock yarn – she chose the colour herself- for her to design a pair of socks with. That is the first time I ever pair up with a designer to use my yarn in a design. Yarn support to designers is very exciting and I’m sure this will give me good exposure once the future pattern will be released (not until later this year).

Like I said above, CC is a designer and you can visit her pattern shop on Ravelry here She is probably best known for her sock designs, especially the series of Doctor Who inspired socks. After seeing her socks at the show I fell in love with one pattern which is also film inspired. The pattern is called The Lady of Lallybroch and is inspired by the Outlander.

Lady of Lallybroch by Java Purl  These are the socks on display at the show and they are gorgeous. Lady of Lallybroch by Java Purl This is a picture I found of someone’s version of those on Ravelry and I feel that the solid color shows the cables better on the picture. You have this intricate celtic cable design going from cuff to toe on the front of the sock. So these are on my todo list and I have already chosen my yarn and so they should be cast on shortly. Here’s my future version of this pattern The Lady of Lallybroch Socks and yarn The yarn is a gradient yarn from Knitcircus and I think it will show the cables beautifully.

Now on to Sam’s and CC’s knitting retreat. The retreat is called Geeky Puffin Knit Palooza and is scheduled for the weekend of 29th of Oct – 1st of Nov 2015. It will be held in Edinburgh, Scotland. You can sign up for residential or non-residential places. In addition to taking classes, participants will take part in a yarn crawl and will have early access to the on site marketplace – before the marketplace opens up to the general public. Also participants will all receive a goodie bag (and those are going to be fantastic) and there will be gorgeous door prizes too. This is looking to be a wonderful retreat so if you are in Europe or going to Scotland, I suggest you check out their website and sign up if you can. All the info can be found here

That’s all for now. I hope you enjoyed meeting these two lovely ladies and hearing about their work. There will be at least one more post this week on yet another inspiring artist I met at the show so I hope you are enjoying my series.

Take care