Tuesday, June 30, 2009

WIPeout 2009 - Puppy Paw Scarf

PATTERN: Cats Paw Scarf from Crystal Palace Yarns

YARN: Anny Blatt Kid Mohair, a present from Jejune

PROGRESS: Knitting of this was finished and blogged on 4 January 2007. Tonight I sewed in the two ends and steam blocked it. Took about 15 minutes including photography.

ISSUES: I always intended a matching beret in this yarn and never found the perfect pattern. I did not then, and do not now, feel the love for knitting lace. I like the finished object, just don't enjoy the process. Perhaps that's why it languished in the knitting basket. It's such a soft, pretty yarn and was a thoughtful and welcome gift.

ACTION: Wear it tomorrow and continue search for the perfect matching beret pattern.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

It's quiet .... maybe too quiet.

It sure has been quiet on the finishing things front around Taph Towers of late.

I knit and kint and knit and nothing gets finished (3 whole days and nothing finished - impossible!). People who like their gratification instantly or possibly sooner probably shouldn't be knitters. But I do so love it. I'm not me without knitting - I know because I've tried the not knitting and it just feels wrong.

The blanket for the Old Flame's mother is about halfway there. This is because I revised the finished size downwards, but it was based on a very scientific try-on-over-my-lap-and-his method. TOF's parents are considerably smaller than we are (cuckoos, anyone?) so if the rug fitted comfortably over my lap and part of his lap, I was obviously halfway there - at least. Right?

There are a some flaws in the blanket (a couple of purls that should have been knits), but I am embracing my limitations and going with a few imperfections. Perfectionism is part of the reason that 22 WIPs were identified at the beginning of June.

I did not, however, embrace the imperfections of the current sock in progress. Last week was a bit hectic, so only the cuff of the second sock was knitted (despite planning to finish it). Just as well because the nagging, "this doesn't feel quite right" feeling which plagued me during the knitting of said cuff turned out to be not the wrong sized needles, as suspected, but the wrong freaking pattern. Why I would knit a 1x1 rib when I always knit 2x2 rib cuffs? Also, why I did not check the other sock which was in the knitting bag the whole time when I first began to doubt is also beyond me.

We'll blame workplace deadlines and stress and let it go. Another hectic week this week with many teleconferences and meetings in which I could not knit means I've lost a week with the sock. Feeling a little less love for the project right now. Second sock is now unravelled and cuff reknitted and will be worked on in the coming week.


We have an unexpected arrival. A former member of my team and the world's loveliest person whom I fail to keep up with regularly because I am in the top ten of world's worst people, has just welcomed her first grandchild. A little boy - who is too big for the baby stash boy coloured socks. Obviously Aiden needs socks and I must provide them - now.
This weekend I knit baby socks. Next weekend we return to the scheduled knitting.

Luckily another dear friend's daughter produced a daughter who has been gifted with a matinee jacket (the pink one) and socks. I was prepared for Ruby.

Monday, June 22, 2009

WIPeout 2009 - Suffrage beanie

I know, I know, I wasn't going to work on beanies but I was caught short with an overlong wait at the doctor's and this accidentally got finished.

PATTERN: TTWC using slip stitch for the body of the hat.

YARN: The dark purple is Cleckheaton 12ply, the variegated green/purple is Happy Spider Hydrangea - a custom job over very old Wangaratta Woollen Mills white from the 80s.

Now there are only two hats in the queue - wonder if I can eke them out for another couple of months? No, I don't think it likley either.

Oh, and Lovestitches - I'd really like to oblige with a photo of my entire stash but don't have access to a satellite right now. I wish that was an exaggeration.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Best and fairest*

If there was a significant other league table, mine would be in finals contention.

14.5 balls Patons Herdwick (maroon) and 6.5 balls Patons Herdwick (charcoal grey) plus 6-ish balls light grey Patons Family 5ply (not photgraphed) for less than $25 the lot. There was also Tupperware.

The 5ply will be socks for himself (most likely) and the Herdwick - not sure yet. I looked at them sitting together last night and thought a fair isle yoked cardigan, maybe. Was checking if there was any destashing on Rav, just the odd ball or two for contast in the yoke you understand, and found I have another 6 balls of the maroon colour and 17 of a light brown. It's a bit dire when I can't remember what's in my own boodle.

For the record, the Old Flame rejects the term "enabler". He prefers to think of himself as keeping me informed of opportunities and potential bargains. The decisions are, apparently, all mine. Great, because I'm so steadfast in the face of woolly temptation.

*I was going to entitle this post "My boyfriend is really good at S.E.X." but thought I'd attract the wrong traffic. ;)

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

G O, G G O ...

We seriously know how to show a sock a good time around here.

Saturday it got a drive in the country.

Enjoyed a little guest up a tree knitting by Winnie the Pooh (I think he was stuck, as Pooh, is so wont to be)

Some modelling on an acquaintance's sports car (yes, a Goggomobil - and it was the Dart)

and a working bee at which the sock watched us collect, haul and stack 4 or 5 trailer-loads of timber around followed by a sausage sizzle and some quiet afternoon knitting (but I forgot to photograph that).

After all that, the sock got a little international rugby action at Bruce Stadium where the Wallabies trounced the Italians in -2C weather.

Monday, June 15, 2009

WIPeout 2009 - Maroon slip stitch beanie

This has been on the needles for ages. It lived in my work locker and had the occasional few stitches knitted when other things were at a too hard spot or when I needed a project for the lunchtime queue at the Post Office etc.

This last couple of weeks it has lived in the car. Totally amazing how much knitting can be done at red lights. After Mum's socks were finished I allowed myself the luxury of finishing it, as I was at the crown decreases by then.

Snowy, the Old Flame's dog, wasn't a very cooperative model but it's done and in the pile to go to Stasia for the soup kitchen.

As LynS has pointed out in the comments, hats are seductive knitting, it's hard to resist their siren call.

Now back to the socks.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

WIPeout 2009 - my socks

PATTERN: Pretty much making it up as I go along, with reference to a Patons pattern, but even it's mother wouldn't recognise it.

YARN: Lucy Neatby sock yarn in the Fiery Fuschia colourway that Janet brought with her from Ottawa in may 2007.

PROGRESS: Started in November 2008. Part way down the first leg.

  • Because these are for me, they keep falling to the bottom of the pile in favour of more pressing knits
  • I overshot the length of the leg and have to do some maths to make it work, or unravel.
  • Do the maths
  • Keep knitting - another portable project is a good thing.

Friday, June 12, 2009

It's not me, it's you

The relationship with Mum's birthday socks is over. Over I tell you.

We had a busy day. Firstly at a staff meeting when the gusset stitches were picked up and the gusset begun.

Over lunch when we finished the gusset and got a fair way down the foot.

At an afternoon teleconference we got even further down the foot.

On the way home in the bus (after finding a pair of skis by a skip and rescuing them) we knew we were almost at the end.

And then, this evening, while watching Torchwood season 2 on DVD we concluded our relationship. I know I should have waited until morning to end it, but we were so close to a resolution I felt it unfair to wait.

Mum is excited about her new socks. Me, I'm not happy. The green stripe is different in the two socks (despite them being the same dyelot), and there was a knot at the bottom of the second ball of yarn that put my pattern repeats out. Still, they are done and will be winging their way to South West Rocks by lunchtime today.

Thursday, June 11, 2009


The temptation to finish a hat (and there are a few within an hour or so of finishing), just so there's something to post is very, very great. I have resisted so far, but only by locking all hats in the boot of the car because it's too cold at night to go out unecessarily and it upsets the dogs to go in and out once we're home - they get all hopeful of an outing and then look very "hang-dog" when it's only me going to the larder/yarn cellar under the house or to the car to retrieve something.

There has been sock knitting, there has been blanket knitting. Neither are finished, nor have they been anywhere interesting to be photographed.

Also, the new Knitty is up and I really want to knit Annette by Helene Rush. I have several yarns in stash which would be perfect. I might settle for printing the pattern and gathering the yarn into a "not to be opened before September" kit.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Monogamous Knitting

When in a monogamous relationship, it's great to spend time together and share mutual interests.

So far Mum's birthday socks have been to a National Trust Council meeting where we caught up with an old friend

and enjoyed a leisurely breakfast at the Farmers' Market.

Sunday, June 07, 2009

WIPeout 2009 - Mum's birthday socks

PATTERN: Umm - see "Issues" below.

YARN: Patons Patonyle in the sickly pink self-striping colourway.

PROGRESS: First sock knitted to gusset stitch pick-up. The were at this stage Christmas week, Mum's birthday is in late April.


  • found I'd dropped one of the heel stitches way back at the beginning of the heel
  • Mum's in warmer climes for winter and announced she didn't need anymore hand-knitted socks. However, she's been wearing the same two pairs of hand-knitted socks in high rotation for the last month. She does need and want more hand-knitted socks.
  • Can't remember what pattern I was using, if any and don't have any notes about it.
  • don't really like the colourway


  • Stop worrying about the dropped stitch. Put a safety pin in it and sew it in when the sock is done.
  • Count stitches in band
  • Count stitches in gusset pick-up.
  • Count number of rounds in band.
  • Measure length of leg to heel flap
  • Count rows in heel flap
  • WRITE ALL NUMBERS down - that's the pattern fat-head.
  • suck it up and keep knitting

Friday, June 05, 2009

WIPeout 2009 - Angelina hits the frog pond

PATTERN: Angelina by Joan McGowan Michael.

: Homespun 8ply weight bought of eBay.

PROGRESS: Started in December 2005! Jejune bought me the pattern for my birthday. Knitted up to arm increases

  • There is a difference between homespun and hand spun which I didn't quite appreciate at the time of purchase. The yarn is quite coarse and doesn't really suit the pattern.
  • Knitters I trust reported difficulties with fit when using other than the recommended yarn.

ACTION: Frog and forget until the right yarn comes along. It's done - frogged, washed and yarn drying.

WIPeout 2009 - Filigree Jacket

PATTERN: Filigree Lace Jacket by Joan McGowan-Michael.

YARN: Recycled 8ply in cherry red

: both sleeves and 4 inches into the body. *sob*

: I love the colour of this yarn, I love the feel of this yarn and I really like the pattern but I cast on in the largest size 64" bust when I was about that size and it was looking a little large then. I'm 10" less in the bust than that now and I can't continue.

: It's frogged but the yarn will be back possibly in the same pattern but in a much smaller size. But not until the other WIPs are dealt with.

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Sock-fu and encouragement

The unbirthday socks are done and will be on their way to Warwick in Queensland tomorrow even though Peggy would like to keep them.

If anyone knits these socks, I suggest you add a couple of centimetres to the foot unless you're knitting for a person with a narrow foot. I am enamoured of the yarn. It's soft and lovely to knit with, if a little splitty. It took almost 3 x 50g balls, so I've enough left for another pair for the Old Flame (later, darling, I promise) and maybe another, slightly shorter, pair possibly for my brother.

Thanks to all of you for your encouragement. I'm trying to be honest about the number of WIPs and the nature of my resistance to finishing them. I suspect there will be almost as much frogging as there will be knitting in the next 3 months.

Thanks especially, this morning, to Priscilla at By Hook or Needles for de-lurking in the comments and awarding me a Kreativ Blogger award. I've never quite worked out how to get these things into my sidebar but I'll try over the weekend. Priscilla is also a librarian and for the crocheters, has several free patterns on her blog.

And a decision has been made about the blanket. After many calculations, I'd have to knit about 15 hours a week for 4 weeks to get it finished. In the interests of sanity it will be a Christmas gift.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

WIPeout 2009 View from the Lake o' Frog - green dog cosy

PATTERN: Based on a stocking stitch doggy jumper in the Patons It's A Dog's Life dog coat book from about 6 or 7 years ago (the book with the stegosaurus coat on the cover).

YARN: Cleckheaton Country 8ply in a lovely olive green

PROGRESS: Altered to knit in moss stitch, one of my favourite all time stitches, to the leg holes - about 5".

  • started several years ago and abandoned I don't know why
  • Peggy is chubbier now than she was when I started this
  • I'd have to find the pattern again, do the maths again, start again ....
  • Peggy has two jumpers, Rosie had two jumpers and Lochie is a known jumper loser so only deserves one.

ACTION: Unravel it, wash the yarn and put it aside for something else.

Unravelling done, washing done - yarn now drying.

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

See saw

Day one brought both my first FO and first set-back.

The Pretty in Pink socks are done (thanks to a staff meeting and a lunch break). They are pressed, beribboned and in the pressie box for the next baby girl.

However, I got a bit muddled with birthdays. The Old Flame's mum's birthday is July, it's his Dad who was born in October.

What to do about the blanket? Give it to his Dad instead? Not sure he goes for mauve all that much. Knit like buggery and hope to get it done by 6 July?

There are exactly 5 weeks until 6 July. Presumably it will need to be ready a couple of days before that, but we won't quibble about that. I estimate I need to knit 3 balls of Studio Mohair each week until b-day to finish. Not entirely sure I can manage that, so what I'll do is knit it this week, review progress and revise estimates accordingly. It might have to be an "on the needles" gift, but I'd like to get it done ASAP.

I'll be helped along by this, though. A very sweet colleague (also a knitter) bought me this at Spotlight over the weekend. She reckons I'll need another cup for the extra caffeine required to complete this challenge.

Monday, June 01, 2009

WIPeout 2009 - Vestigal

PATTERN: Vestish by Robin Dodge in size 2X

YARN: Recycled black 8ply crepe


  • Back completed
  • Front at 9" - nearly finished the waist shaping

  • It's for me, so I tended to put it aside in favour of other projects.
  • I hate sewing up, I really should be knitting this in the round
  • I got to 9" on the front - halfway to the armholes - and put the back and front together to make sure the waist shaping would be in the same place and discovered I'd knitted a 3x back and was knitting a 2x front. Effin' brilliant - very cross with myself.
ACTION: This will be unravelled, the wool washed and I'll knit another vest with it. I won't cast on until the end of this challenge though.