Christmas themed knitting

Hello there, how are you this beginning of a new week?

I hope you had a  lovely and relaxing weekend. Here in France there are a lot of riots so we mostly just stay home and do our Christmas shopping online. This meant that I got a little more knitting time this past weekend.

I have been hard at work working on my two big test knits and I’m happy to say that one of those is finally getting a little bit closer to being finished. I probably still have about 2 weeks worth of knitting left but I’m starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel so to speak.

This means I hardly have any knitting to actually show off. Just one sock project that I’m creating as I go along.

I’m knitting a pair of socks using my own pattern and maybe one day I will finally write a pattern down to share with the world!

I actually started knitting something completely different, that is another sock pattern, but I somehow either misunderstood the pattern or just wasn’t using the right yarn. It just didn’t feel or look right so I ripped back to the end of the cuff and did my own thing and I really like the outcome. I have no idea if there is already a pattern out there that is the same. This honestly is just from a spur of the moment inspiration.

It is a super simple two row repeat lace pattern that I have done only on the front of the sock. The idea is for me to finish in time to gift this to someone for Christmas and I really hope I will be able to do so.

These socks tie in with today’s subject which is Christmas Sock Pattern. I have been buying way too many of those lately and I was just trying to knit one of those when I got frustrated and ripped back and decided to do my own thing.

So as we get closer to the holiday season a lot of Christmas themed patterns appear on Ravelry and as a sock knitter I find myself naturally drawn to those.

Even though I have knit enough pairs of socks to not really need a pattern, I still compulsively buy sock patterns. I think I mostly buy them for the stitch patterns used and sometimes when I think it uses a technique I may not be familiar with.

So far here are the patterns I have purchased and plan to knit in the future/

The first is called Reindeer Hooves by Christy Houghton of Yarn Café Creations. This is a top down pattern with an all over pattern on the leg and then the front of the foot. This is the pattern I had difficulties with. It just did not look right with my yarn but I do intend to give this pattern a second chance.

The second pattern is part of a sock pattern club by Mina Philipp of the Knitting Expat. This pattern came as a bonus I believe for those purchasing her latest sock club (The Seasons Club) but it can also be purchased as a stand alone pattern. The pattern is called Candy Cane Socks. This looks like a fairly simple pattern that could look good in a solid or slightly variegated yarn so I will have to knit this one soon. Doesn’t have to be a Christmas sock. If this is knit in a non-Christmas yarn it will be a yearlong sock. The pattern itself is not especially christmasy I think.

Then there is another pattern by Christy Houghton of Yarn Café Creations. This time the pattern is called Santa Baby Socks.

These look really nice I think. Less patterning than on the first pattern I shared and I can really see myself knitting these.

And the last pattern I have purchased is one by Louise Tilbrook Designs. Her pattern is called Yulelight Socks. These look just lovely. The patterning is subtle but efficient and the pattern picture really screams Christmas I think.

So that is a lot of patterns that now need knitting! And as if that  wasn’t enough, I just heard of something called #Sockvent. This is a Christmas Sock Pattern advent calendar of sorts and will run from December 12th to the 24th. If you follow the hashtag on IG, each day there will be a designer offering their sock pattern with a 40% discount! Now is that tempting or what?!

Knowing myself I’m pretty sure I will not be able to refrain for buying even more sock patterns!

Are you knitting any holiday themed projects these days? I’d love to hear from you if you are and maybe you could share the pattern name with us so we too can go take a look and get inspired:)

I will be back later this week with some more knitting related chatter. Thank you for taking the time to stop by today. I hope you have a wonderful rest of the week.

Happy knitting:)

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In a bit of a stand still

Hi there, how are you feeling today? I hope you are feeling good and having a nice start to your week. I’m feeling a bit…not really under the weather but just not in a great place for some reason.

Knitting wise I have been concentrating on a few projects. One is a sweater test knit that is top secret. I’m knitting it out of Holst Garn Tides which is a wool/silk blend. So far so good. I think I will finish the body today and then get on to the sleeves.

Then there is Sock Madness round 2! And this is a clear sign I’m not quite myself but I think I’m going to quit. Yes, that’s right! What happened?

Well, so I got the pattern just after it was released and cast on immediately. This time the pattern is a mix of brioche and stocking stitch. This combination makes for a very loose fitting/elastic fabric so as I went on it just felt too big. And I’m sorry to say I did not like the pattern/outcome much.

And then I made a mistake! In the gusset section and discovered my mistake just after finishing the heel turn. So not long after but it did mean I had to rip back to the end of my flap and continue a few rows only ripping back a heel that is partly in brioche…well that did not sound so enticing. And I just wasn’t “feeling it” for some reason.

So before going to bed that night, I ripped out THE ENTIRE SOCK! And I haven’t cast on again. This is not like me but I think I’m just not in the right frame of mind at the moment and adding stress to my life is not a good idea right now. So I decided to just stop and only knit on things I truly enjoy working on.

I do have 2 pairs of socks on the go but haven’t worked on them this past week. I have just been working on my sweater and a new shawl.

I don’t wear a lot of shawls, I have a few favorite ones that I use a lot and the others just linger in my wardrobe. But I have a feeling this one may become a new favorite. It is the Girl’s Best Friend shawl by Isabelle Kraemer. I’m sure you have seen it lots of time. A lot of knitting bloggers/podcasters have made some. For extra pleasure I’m knitting mine with mostly new yarns, two out of three that is AND they are from my stash so good for me!

I still have plenty of knitting to do and I really enjoy working on this and I’m really happy with the yarn/colors. The grey is a singles I dyed. The pink is a singles too I got from a destash on Ravelry but don’t remember the yarn brand. The brown contrast color is a Madeleine Tosh Sock yarn. So pure luxury for this shawl.

Once this one is done I’m hoping I will finish my Across the Pond shawl by the Knitting Expat before I cast on for the Baubles shawl by Andrea Mowry.

So that’s all I have for you knitting wise. I am getting ready for a new Maker of the Month feature. I also am thinking about doing a giveaway when I reach 300 subscribers to my blog which should be soon. Amazing I know ! Who would have guessed that I would be able to maintain a blog for over 2 years now and grow a following of people that actually enjoy reading my blog! I’m so grateful for all those that follow and support my blogging adventures. I’m planning something nice, a giveaway that you will hopefully enjoy.

And one other thing. In February I talked about starting a Spring Challenge this April to organize my yarn and other crafting supplies and some of you expressed interest in joining me. The more the merrier and frankly if you are anything like I am, the support of others will be a big bonus.

So I haven’t forgotten. Life has just gotten in the way. I have family from Iceland visiting at the moment so I won’t be able to really get started till this weekend. I’m going to open a new page here on this website just for the challenge so that we can share ideas and progress. I’m thinking I should keep the challenge somewhat separate as not everyone may be interested in that and I want to continue blogging as usual and discuss other topics. I did think about opening a Ravelry thread in my group for this but after some consideration m I think I will keep everything here. What do you think?

I have started working on this and have a Pinterest board where I pin storage ideas to share with you for example. I so desperately need to organize not only my stash but also my many wips so I really look forward to getting started for real and if you are joining too, I hope you are gearing up as well.

That’s it for today I think. Thank you again for stopping by today for a chat. I wish you a great rest of the week and Happy Knitting

It’s looking a lot like Christmas…

Yes you read that right! As I’m sitting here at my desk and writing, I’m watching the snowfall outside. This is the first snow we have had here in Normandy this winter and it’s coming down quite heavily. We are not used to snow and even a little bit can cause serious disruption in transportation so even if it looks nice to look at, it is not really welcome. I for one do not enjoy driving in the snow. I’m way out of practice as it’s been so many years since I moved from Iceland to France.

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So hopefully by tomorrow morning this will just be a nice memory and all the snow will have gone!

It does however create a nice knitting atmosphere, I cannot deny that:)

So this past weekend I did a lot of knitting but on a lot of different projects so nothing really made changed dramatically.

I cast on for the first pair of socks out of Mina Philip second sock club (yes I bought both! so now I get a pattern a month from her until the end of this year). The pattern is called Warm and Snug socks. This pattern is made for self striping yarns and lucky for me, I had this set of Snow White self striping yarn with sparkles from Turtle Purl that I have been wanting to knit for a while. So that just was perfect. I found some leftover yarn from my stash for cuffs,heels and toes to maintain the striping.

This pattern is rather simple, like a variation on a vanilla sock as the patterning is on the front leg only. And this is a stitch pattern I have never used before and so very fun to try out.

I have just finished sock one and I immediately cast on for sock two in an effort to avoid second sock syndrome. And so I have finished the cuff of sock two and will get going on the leg tomorrow.

It is not easy to show the texture but if you look closely you will see that certain rounds are “shorter” meaning instead of seeing 4 rounds of one color it’s as if there is just one. That is the result of this new textured stitch she has included in this pattern.

Here are a better pictures taken with a side view to show you the difference on the front and the back of the leg.

You see how certain stripes on the front are raised and only a thin line? Clever hah?

Being the sock knitting maniac that I am, I not only signed up for both of Mina’s (The Knitting Expat) sock clubs but I also signed up for Helen Stewart’s (Curious Handmade). So every other month I will have one new sock pattern and the other month I will have two! Like in February. The patterns do not come out on the same day luckily so Helen’s pattern was just published on the 5th of Feb and I immediately cast on! Thinking maybe I should knit one sock of each pattern and then go back for the second sock. Not sure. maybe I should just finish one pair and only then get going on the second!

Anyway the first pattern in Helen’s club is called Winter Rose Sock and I’m knitting it with a yarn from Lolo Did It called Hippo for Thanksgiving. It’s a light grey color with some wintery speckles in red, orange, green and yellow. I’m only a few rounds into the cuff so too early to show off here.

This weekend I also knit a little bit on my brioche wrap from Madeleine Windsor of Kingfisher Knits. This is a recent pattern of hers called Midnight Sherbet and is knit in DK yarn. I’m knitting mine with my organic merino DK yarn and it feels and works up beautifully. I’m about 20% done so far so not much but I’m enjoying it.

If you look closely on the pink side picture, you can see a cable on the right side. That was a little challenging but now I fully understand so I’m ready to tackle all the future cables. I think this will be such a great piece. Warm and cozy.

I also worked on my cardigan and sweater. The cardigan is my first ever colorwork garment and my first steek project. I’m also knitting it with HOLST garn and it is the first time I’m using that yarn. I’m maybe 40% done, I think I’m getting close to where the ribbing begins on the bottom of the body. Still a few centimeters/inches from that but should be done soon. I’m really enjoying this project a lot and this yarn is nice to work with and I’m super excited to see how it will looked once the garment has been washed as I’ve heard this yarn “blooms”.

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This pattern is called Damejakka Loppa or Flea Cardigan on Ravelry and is by Pinneguri.

I have also started a new test knit. It’s a cropped sweater by Japanese designer Eri called Akane.  I’m using yarn from Knit Cosmic Strings and the pattern is fun to knit. I’m knitting a bit longer than the pattern calls for.

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That’s about all the knitting I’m working on actively these days.

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I did launch my first ever yarn sale here on the blog this past weekend. I have created a new page here called Boutique where I intend to sell yarn on a regular basis. Currently you will find the Hindiber hat kit that i launched in collaboration with Madeleine Windsor of Kingfisher Knits. Each kit includes a download link for her pattern which comes in 3 sizes and a skein of my DK merino yarn. You have a number of colorways to choose from, some are superwash and others are my organic non superwash DK base.

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The price of the kit is 25€ + shipping (7€).

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I hope you will go take a look at the kit. I’d also love to hear what you think of the set up for the yarn sale. It is not like a regular e-shop but more like a blog post. When clicking the buy button you are taken to Paypal where you can pay with your Paypal account or a credit card so even if it looks different it is a serious set up.

That’s it for today. Have a wonderful week ahead with hopefully lots of knitting and yarn cuddling:)

A test knit reveal and more

Hi there,

Thank you for stopping by today. I hope you are doing good and that you had a nice weekend, maybe even a prolonged weekend if you live in the US. Back here in France school has started again and I’m happy to get back into the routine. When working from home, I admit that it is way easier when the kids are at school than having them all 3 at the home. Even if they are not very young. So seeing everyone return to school feels good:)

I had a sale in my shop over the weekend and if you purchased anything I would like to thank you for your support. It means a lot to me. I’m still pondering whether to continue or not. Selling on Etsy is a challenge and if I want to have a chance of continuing I will have to get my own ecommerce website and launch a crowdfunding project to get the necessary funds to set up a new website and purchase new yarn bases and other items indispensable to running the shop in a productive way. I’m not sure whether that is a reasonable thing to do or if  people are not willing to support/fund another indie dyer. There are so many dyers out there and even if we usually say there is a place for everyone, the market is already well supplied in indie dyed yarn and so a project like mine might not awake interest. I’m still thinking this over and I just might launch a Kickstarter campaign. After all either I won’t make my goal and nothing happens or I do make my goal and get to fulfill my dream. I will keep you updated of course.

Now onto knitting. As the title of today’s post says, I’m about to reveal one of my test knits. So as I told you before, I was test knitting 2 cardigans and a pair of socks. I have just finished the first cardigan and the pattern has now been released on Ravelry.

This new pattern is called Tommelise and the designer er Agata known as Amanitaknits. I have already knit a number of her patterns and this is the third time I test knit for her so I feel I can recommend her patterns without a second thought.

This time it is a fingering weight cardigan. The pattern is meant more for spring/summer/early autumn wear as it is rather short and has 3/4 length sleeves. The pattern is easy to follow and what can be called a potato chipy knit. The cardigan is knit in one piece so no sewing but a lot of purling. But that’s ok. If you don’t like purling, just look at this as your chance to work on your purling speed or why not learn to knit backwards and work on that while doing the cardigan.

I knit mine using my SOX yarn base which is a 75/25 merino/nylon yarn that I hand dyed myself is a lovely red brique color. Almost a Harry Potter red.

I did choose to modify the pattern slightly. This is the first time I ask to modify the pattern as I’m test knitting. I wanted the cardigan to be longer, the body that is. I also wanted full length sleeves. So my changes include: a longer body, longer sleeves including a longer cuff.

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Here are a few pictures of me wearing the cardigan. I actually finished this twice! What happened was that I knit the sleeves very long and after washing and blocking the cardigan, I ended up with VERY long sleeves. Too long. So I ripped back and reknit just the cuff and now it fits perfectly.

I think this pattern is beautiful and if you live someplace where the weather is mild; I would definitely recommend following the pattern to the T. I chose to lengthen the cardigan because I usually wear this type of garment in winter over a tshirt.

I really love the finished item and I’m so happy to have finished. Now I only have one cardigan and two pairs of socks for test knitting! Yes! two socks! I just accepted a  new sock knitting test knit 🙂

In other knitting related news. I have started both Mkals; the What the Fade by Andrea Mowry and the Road to Rhinebeck by Mina Phillip.  I was surprised by how short Clue 1 was in the Road to Rhinebeck shawl. It took less than an hour to finish, maybe as little as half an hour so not much to share with you.

I’m still working on Clue 1 for the What the Fade mkal. I was happy to see that it is at least partly in brioche and I’m just over half done with clue 1. For this kal I splurged and  purchased an entire Fade kit! 6 entire skeins of fingering weight yarn from Dragon Hoard Yarns on Etsy.  I’m very excited about this project as I’m a fan of Andrea’s patterns so I’m pretty sure this will be amazing not to mention of epic proportions seeing the quantity of yarn!

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How gorgeous are these yarns?! I’m using them from the top down, that is the brown skein at the top is my color A and the bottom white and speckled skein is my yarn F.

And this is where I’m at now

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According to the pattern, the first (darker) picture is the front/right side. I however think brioche can be used either side and like both equally much so far. Of course the pattern may not be entirely in brioche and so the darker side will have to be the front. We’ll see. I’m going to try my best to keep up with the clues and try not to fall behind as that might lead to me being discouraged and casting on a gazillion new things rather than catch up!

If you are doing these kals, I’d love to hear what you think so far and if you’d like to share pictures I’d love to see your versions.

This is all for today. I’ll be back soon with a super exciting new post full of pictures from Iceland’s first ever yarn crawl! I was not lucky enough to participate myself but a cousin of mine who lives in Iceland and is a great knitter, did attend and she sent me tons of pictures to share with you all and I think you will enjoy seeing those. Depending on time, I might post later this week. If times runs out on me, then this coming weekend.

Until then, thank you for stopping by and I wish you all a wonderful week with plenty of knitting:)

What’s on my needles? A LOT

Hi there, how are you ? I hope you are doing fine. I am just good and enjoying my knitting. I think I have rarely had so many projects going at the same time. It does feel ever so slightly overwhelming but… I’m just totally unable to resist the cast-on-itis. As soon as I get my hands on a new yarn I immediately need to cast on for something, no matter how many other projects I’ve got going at that time!

I hope you are like that too, it would make me feel less of a crazy person:)

So what exactly am I knitting on these days? So two shawls and a ton of socks. Shawl number one is the Cozy Shlanket by Mina Philipp and this is a mystery knit-a-long with clues being released each Sunday. I’m currently on clue 3 but clue 4 which is the last clue, just came out. I’m knitting the Aran version as I wanted a really huge shlanket and I imagine myself having this on my shoulders as I work my evening shifts. The yarn is my own of course and I dyed it specially for this project. I did go out of my comfort zone color wise but I think it will be fine. Here’s where I’m at now

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The rows are slowly getting bigger and bigger. This will be super cozy once done.

Then there is shawl number two which is also part of a kal and an Instagram challenge. This is the Brioche challenge launched by Louise Tilbrook designs and it encourages us to knit brioche during the month of January. Lots of people have joined and are knitting brioche of various levels of difficulty. I chose a pattern that I’ve had in my stash for a while. It is not all brioche but rather has sections of brioche and sections of garter stitch. It’s called Briochealicious and is a for sale pattern on Ravelry by Andrea Mowry. The pattern calls for 4 yarns/colors and I’m using two of mine and two store bought. Here is where I am now

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You can see that at the beginning of the second brioche section I messed up! But I decided not to tink back but leave it. Not sure that was the right decision but I’m too far into this now to tink back so I’m just going to convince myself that no one will notice 🙂

And then there are the socks! All the socks! I think I have become a sock knitting crazy lady. I have so many socks in my pile of wips that need their second sock done and then there are all the socks I’m currently working on.

Let’s begin this with three pairs of FINISHED socks! First of is a pair I knit for my daughter. The yarn is my own. I was playing with dyeing and unfortunately I did not write down the method so I won’t be able to replicate which is super silly because I really love how the yarn knits up. The stitch pattern is something I found on Ravelry and I adapted that to my own sock formula.

 

Then there is my pair of Christmas Eve Cast On socks. I joined the movement led by Dani of The Little Bobbins podcast and I cast on a pair of socks on Christmas Eve. I used the Simple Skyp pattern which is a free pattern on Ravelry and I dyed a skein of yarn just for this. I wanted a yarn that reminded me of fairy lights and I think I succeeded.

 

And then I finished a pair called London Skies. This is a twisted rib pattern and it took me forever to finish. I think it was a combination of the twisted stitches and the yarn that was a little wooly. I used West Yorkshire Spinners Signature 4 ply yarn. Boy was I happy when I cast off the second sock!

 

And then there are my socks in progress. Mostly they are knit using my own hand dyed yarns and  they are at various stages of completion. I have promised myself to finish them all asap and as soon as I finish one sock to cast on for the second to avoid the second sock syndrome.

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This is a one of a kind colorway I dyed and the pattern I’m using is the same as on the finished brown pair above.

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These will be for my youngest. This is also a one of a kind colorway I dyed and I’m again doing a Simple Skyp Sock. I love how it is working up.

 

 

This is a HO. This is a test knit that I’m doing for my friend and designer Dana Gervais. I have finished one sock and just begun the ribbing of sock number two. This is knit using two yarns and I thought I had chosen contrasting yarns. One green and one pink. Well it turns out that the mostly green yarn has some yellow and the mostly pink has some green so they actually mix and look a lot like it was just one yarn. Only when you look at the heels and toes can you really see the difference. Fortunately the stitch pattern on the front still stands out so it worked out good in the end. These are fun to knit and the pattern quickly becomes intuitive.

And speaking of Dana, I have just begun a new test knit for her. When this picture was taken I had only done one pattern repeat but I’m further along now. It’s a gorgeous cable pattern and the yarn is a new yarn base I just got. When I saw her picture of the socks on Instagram I just new I had to get in on this test knit and that I had to knit it in this particular yarn so I dyed a skein and wound it up and then waiting until she was ready to post a call for testers. Lucky for me I got to test for her again.

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You can’t see much but the yarn is a tweed yarn with colorful neps that add an extra pop of fun to the yarn.

And the last pair of socks is one I’m knitting using yarn from Knit Cosmic Strings. It’s the Shoreditch colorway that is gorgeous. I’m again doing a Simple Skyp sock (which seems to have become my go to pattern these days).

 

I also signed up for a kal with designer Rachel Gibbs and I’m going to knit a sock of course. Her pattern is called Time Stream Socks. My yarn is all caked up and ready, I just need to find a moment to cast on. I believe the kal is to the end of February so I think I’ll make it. In addition I think I only need to finish one sock to qualify:) Will you be joining?

That’s it for today. As you can see I have a lot of work ahead of me with all the knitting projects I’ve taken on. I’d love to hear from you, what you are working on and if you feel like sharing a picture that would be awesome.

Until next time, take care and have a wonderful week:)

Knitting and life in general

Hi there, how are you today? I hope you had a nice weekend and that this week has begun well. I had a nice weekend. Some of my husbands friends came and spent the night at our house and that was nice. We hadn’t seen them for ages. In addition they were very lucky with the weather and on Saturday morning we went to Ouistreham which is a beach town just a few minutes from our home and we walked along the beach and then had lunch in a restaurant on the beach. It almost felt like summer again:)

Then Sunday came around and boy, it felt nothing like summer! Sunday was a very grey and rainy day here in Normandy. And today, Tuesday it is cold and humid so no we are definitely in winter now.

Now with regards to knitting, I feel like I’m a bit out of it, not really feeling the mojo for some reason. I think maybe my pile of wips and to knit may be intimidating me. I have been knitting of course but I just feel like I’m not enjoying it as much as I should.

I have one finished object, I knit a little onesie for a future niece that will be arriving in December. I had the hardest time to find a pattern that motivated me to knit and yet I really wanted to knit her something. I found this lovely pattern for a onesie on Ravelry and I have now finished that, ends are woven in and buttons in place. The only thing left is blocking.

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This is a very nice pattern and once you get going, it is quite intuitive. The pattern is called Tiriltunge Newborn Onesie and this is a paid for pattern on Ravelry. I used yarn from my stash for this, Cascade Heritage Silk which is a merino and Mulberry silk blend. This is a lovely turquoise blue color which I think goes with both boys and girls. I do have a pair of little tube socks in pink and chocolate that I’m going to give her as well. But when I had this done, I felt like I should knit something else to go with it. I was thinking a hat or maybe some leggings and I have found patterns on Ravelry but not the motivation to actually cast on. So maybe I will just leave it at this, a onesie and a pair of socks. We’ll see.

I have also been working on the Harry Potter themed socks for my oldest. My choice of yarn is all wrong though and that bothers me. I chose a stellina yarn from Lanitium ex Machina and the yarn is just so harsh and just not enjoyable to knit with. I think that for socks its ok and that my daughter will not be bothered when she wears the socks (I hope) but to knit with, it’s just not enjoyable and so I’m only knitting on this  a little each time.

Also I’m thinking I should have gone with a solid color yarn because this variegated yarn hides the stitch pattern somewhat. I do like the colour but maybe it was not the right choice for this particular pattern. Anyway I have finished one sock and I’m working on the second so there will be no ripping back:)

 

 

What do you think?

I also have two new knits. One is a pair of Halloween socks for my youngest. I’m using a set of yarns that I dyed up for the shop. I called this color Candy Corn (yellow and orange) and I’m using a dark green for contrasting heel,toes and cuff.

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I’m not using a pattern but rather knitting from memory. I’m knitting them toe up and I did a short row heel. As you can see I have finished one sock and I’m already working on the second so hopefully this pair will be done in time for Halloween.

I also started the Simee Dimeh shawl by Romi Hill. Months ago I indulged myself and purchased a kit for this shawl from Miss Babs yarns. I chose the kit called Favorite Boots Sierras. This is a mosaic pattern so uses slipped stitches and I think it will be gorgeous. The yarn is really beautiful and I love the colors. I’m at the very beginning now so not much to show you but here are some pictures anyway

The first picture shows you the colours and the little I have done so far. The second picture shows you the stitch pattern for the first part of the shawl. I think the rest of the shawl is a garter stitch mosaic although I admit I have not actually read through the entire pattern.

So this week I will be working on the shawl and the Halloween socks as well as on the Harry Potter socks. Once I will have finished one of the socks, I’ll be looking for a new project and hopefully I’ll pick something up from my pile of wips rather than casting on something entirely new.

This week is winter holiday for the kids so they are home most of the time. The youngest did want to go to  what we call “point jeunes” which is a place where 10+ older kids meet up and they do all sorts of activities under adult supervision of course. This is the first time she goes and yesterday was the first day. That went really well so hopefully she will have a wonderful week. I’m not on holiday myself so that is why I let her go to the point jeunes. Working from home when all three kids are at home is not always easy and my youngest gets easily bored so this is a much better solution for her. I did put in for 2 x half day off so this Thursday and Friday I’ll get off work at 2 pm and that is great! Especially this week as my mother and one of my cousins are coming for a visit from Iceland. They will be spending 10 days here so maybe I won’t have the time to blog next week as I’ll be busy between work and my guests.

I hope the weather will be nice; or at least that it won’t rain much so that they can enjoy being outside and go places. I look forward to seeing my mum again and getting a little shipment of comfort food from home:)

I think this is all for today. I hope you have enjoyed stopping by today and I thank you for taking the time to read my post. Have a wonderful week and I’ll speak to you soon:)

My latest knits

Hi there again, it’s only been a few days since I last posted but I didn’t share with you my progress in that post. I do hope you took a look at the Antonia shawl I told you about a few days ago and that you were able to take advantage of the 50% off coupon code. If you did purchase the pattern, I’d love to see your finished shawl in the future so hopefully some of you will be sharing pictures of that later on.

Now on to my own knitting. So since last time, I have been knitting on a few projects. First finished object is my second Harry Potter fandom knit. This is for my oldest daughter who fell in love while browsing the Unofficial Harry Potter Knits magazine from Interweave. So that means I have now finished two projects and have 5 more to go! I will be casting on for project number 3 today.

So I just finished a pair of fingerless mittens called Hermione’s Time Turner mitts. These are an all over cable pattern with the letter H double stitched on the front. This was a small project but because of all the cables it did take me some time to finish. It’s not a pick up/put down constantly project so I only knit on this when I had enough time to do a few pattern repeats.

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I really like how these turned out. The yarn is a dark chocolate brown so the picture is quite dark but I hope you get the idea. Luckily my daughter loves them! So next up will be a pair of socks called Dragon’s Egg Socks. Those are actually written for men but I’ll knit the smallest size and just adjust the length. I have already wound up my yarn and printed out the pattern so all is ready to go.

The second finished object this week is a pair of thrummed slippers. I have been wanting to try thrums for a long time and I finally did it. The motivation was cold fee! As you may know, I work from home and so I sit at my desk for 8h a day and during the winter the house is not super warm, especially my bedroom which is where I work from. And so I find myself having frozen feet especially when I work the evening shift and so I thought I just had do something about this and decided to knit a pair of thrummed slippers. I went to Ravelry of course to look around for ideas and I found a paid for pattern by the Cozy Knitter called Thrummed Slippers. It’s a super simple pattern at a good price so I went ahead and purchased that. The pattern is written for a woman’s medium size. I’m very tall so I thought I’d go up a few needle sizes to accommodate for that….I really shouldn’t have!

I used my 100%BFL Aran yarn and some roving from my stash. The pattern is written for needle size 5mm or US8 and I used 6mm or US 10. This resulted in a very loose fabric and that is what I don’t like about my slippers. They did turn out ok though and I shared pictures of them on Instagram and got a lot of likes and nice compliments so I guess “from afar” they look better than up close:)

But it’s ok, these are just to be used when at my desk and not while I’m about the house or in the presence of others. And the other night I tried them and wow they are perfect! Super warm and fuzzy and the roving really keeps the feet warm. So all in all I’m happy with my new slippers. My kids loved them and two have asked me to knit them a pair so I have dyed up some more of my BFL Aran wool and I’ll be casting on for those next weekend I think.

But here’s a picture so you can see for yourself

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What do you think? They do look cozy, there is no denying that:)

My big wip at the moment is the Dexter cardigan by Isabelle Kramer. I’m knitting that using two lace weight yarns held together in stead of a fingering weight yarn. I shared with you a while back the yarns I dyed up for this. One is all grey and the others are variegated. I did dye up a lot more than I actually need. Lace yarns are just never ending! Currently I have finished the body, button band and all. And I’m on sleeve number one. So I used the grey and the variegated yarn for the body and then I used only the grey held double for the ribbing, neck and button bands. Then it was time for the first sleeve. I was wondering if I should do the sleeves in all grey too. I don’t think I had enough left of the first variegated skein to knit both sleeves and as I did the ribbing and button bands in all grey, I was wondering if I should stick to that and not add a new color to the equation.

Finally I decided that I would add a second variegated skein as I had planned for. I chose the softest/lightest coloured one so it actually looks quite grey but it still has some mauve and pinks in there. I’m almost done with the decreases so I’m guessing I’ll finish the sleeve this week and get going on the second so hopefully this cardigan will be all done in a week to ten days.

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The lighting is not good on this picture but you get an idea of where I’m at and what the colours look like.

When this one is done, I really should pick up the two big wips I have abandoned for months, a sweater for my daughter and a cardigan for myself so hopefully I’ll be able to refrain from casting on another cardi or sweater and get at least one of these two done!

I’m also knitting on a pair of simple socks using a sock blank and I think I’m going to do a post just about that. A lot of people are not familiar with sock blanks or they have seen them but are hesitant to buy and use them so I think that could be an interesting topic and to see how one knits up and so forth. I have one sock done and the second is about 30% done now so once I’m all done and the socks have been blocked and so forth I’ll be sharing that experience with you here.

That’ s all for today. I hope you have enjoyed spending some time with me today. I really enjoy sharing my knitting life with you. I don’t have any knitting friends where I live so the blog is such a happy place for me to share and get positive feedback and encouragement for my work. So thank you so much for stopping by and spending some of your precious time in my company.

I hope you will have a wonderful rest of the week and an even better weekend. Take care and “see” you soon:)

A new shawl design using my yarn

Hi there how are you today? Had a nice weekend? I do hope you are doing good. I had a nice weekend and today the weather is sunny and brisk. This morning it was incredibly cold so the air is definitely turning here and it is time to get out all the wooly accessories which is a good thing.

Today I wanted to share with you a new shawl design that was published on Ravelry just yesterday. The pattern was designed and knit with one of my yarns and so I’m super proud to present it to you. I will need to do a special post where I share all the patterns that have been designed and knit with my yarns so far as there are quite a few now.

But for today let me introduce you to the Antonia shawl by Madeleine Windsor. This is an asymmetrical shawl in three sizes so you will need between 1 and 2 whole skeins I believe. One skein is enough for the small size, I used just over one skein for the medium so I’m guessing 2 skeins will be quite sufficient for the large version. ** I just got a message from the designer telling me that in the end she published a one size only shawl but with instructions on how to make the shawl bigger. So if you follow the pattern 1 skein is enough but if you want to make it bigger, you need 2 skeins although you may not need two full skeins***

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This is a mostly garter stitch shawl with some patterning and lace. The designer was kind enough to send me the pattern at the same time as she sent it out to test knitters. I had told her that I would not be able to commit to finishing within her time frame due to my work and the gazillion things I had on my needles. But it turns out I was actually the very first to finish! It was just so much fun!

She designed the shawl using my Cash’Sock yarn which is an 80/10/10 super wash merino, nylon, cashmere base so the yarn is super soft and a joy to knit with. I used the yarn that I had dyed for the Golden Skein, Birds of a Feather. That yarn was dyed with sock or other small circumference knit in mind so it was really fun to see how that knit up into such a large project and I really like the results.

I have now created a project page on Ravelry for all to see my version of the Antonia shawl.The pattern is being offered at a 50% discount until October 17th so that is a super great deal! Just use the coupon code: ANTONIA_IG at check out. Here’s a link to the pattern page on Ravelry.

Here are some pictures of my version of the Antonia shawl using my Birds of a Feather yarn.

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I hope you enjoyed reading about this new shawl pattern and seeing the pictures. If you like shawl knitting, I hope you will take advantage of the coupon code for a super great price on this design.

That’s all for today. I’ll be back soon with some news of my latest knitting as I have a few things to share with you all. Thank you for stopping by today and have a great week:)

A new rainy week

Hi there, how are you today? I hope the weather is better in your part of the world than it is here in Normandy. Last year at the same time we were already enjoying summer weather but this year its nothing but rain! Doesn’t feel like summer at all!

Nothing much has happened since I last spoke to you. Lots of work and not so much knitting. I haven’t even managed to finish my second pair in the Tour de Sock. The deadline for stage two is today and I’m only just past the cuff on sock 2. When I saw that I was not going to make the deadline I sort of lost my sock knitting mojo and put the sock on the side….I have to finish though and I’m sure I will. I have a total of 3 socks on my needles currently and strangely non of them have been getting any love at all lately. This is a picture of the Tour de Sock stage two sock I’m (supposed to be) working on

tour de sock second stage

It is a very beautiful pattern and the solid color does the patterning justice but there is just something that prevents me from knitting on as usual. Hopefully I’ll get my sock knitting mojo back very soon.

So rather than knit on socks, I have been knitting on my Ganz shawl as part of my summer kal that I’m running in my Ravelry group. I’m making slow but steady progress there.

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I have done the gansey strip and picked up stitches and now I’m working on the stockinette section. It is now a very easy and relaxing knit that I can work on without thinking.

I really should just concentrate on getting that done and/or pick up my 3 sweaters that have been left dormant in project bags in my room for the last months….but….of course I did not and I just cast on for a new project! Not really a surprise there but hey. So what happened is that I was doing a test dye using possible new yarn bases. The company I was test dyeing for only needs a small amount of each yarn to knit a swatch before they choose which base they like so I found myself with some very nice, freshly dyed yarns and as I looked at them I thought of another skein of yarn that I had balled up and waiting on me. I put the side by side

party on my needles all wound upAnd all of a sudden it clicked! I need to cast on for a shawl and not just any shawl, no I need to cast on for Party on my needles by Joji Locatelli. The Grocery Girls Tracy and Jodie are doing a #jojialong in their group on Ravelry and I thought it would be fun to join and so I cast on.

The yarns are all different, the burgundy one on the left is a new base of sw merino/yak/nylon. It is super soft and gives a lovely stitch definition. The yarn is a natural light brown that I overdyed with red and that gave this beautiful sort of burgundy color.

The second yarn is a Donegal nep yarn that I have dyed and sold before. That yarn is also a darker yarn that comes in a sort of natural light grey with specks of brown and black. I space dyed that to match somewhat the burgundy one.

The third and last one is on my SPARKLES base and that was dyed in a neon yellow. The pattern calls for a high contrast bind off color and I thought this would be very fun.

At the moment I’m on the first section of the shawl where it is just garter stitch and I have not yet decided if I’ll do a small or a large version. Joji shows the small version in her pattern and it looks quite big or big enough so I’m not sure. I can knit one or two lace repeats before deciding which way I go so that will give me some time to decide.

This is where I’m at now

party on my needles shawl

Funny how the yarn looks almost pink in this picture. It really isn’t, its a burgundy/brown red shad in reality.

So that’s about all I’ve been knitting on lately.

Shop/business wise I’m still working on the Gilmore Girls sock kit.  We have had a very positive reaction to our kit and in just a week we have almost sold out. Last time I knew, only one kit was left so if you are interested you had better click the link above and grab the very last kit. There will be no others!

Dyeing self striping yarn is a huge undertaking, it is so time consuming. I’m almost done so now I’m really looking forward to shipping off all the yarn and for everything to be sent out to our buyers and then to actually cast on and knit my very own pair of Gilmore Girls socks using my very own 10 colour self striping yarn:)

That’s it for today. Thank you for coming by and spending some time with me and my knitting. I hope you have a wonderful week with lots of quality crafty time. Speak to you soon 🙂