'Knitting Fog..!' Early morning mist in fields surrounding our village

Monday, 29 November 2010

Snow in Little Barugh

Photo's taken on the 28th and 29th of November 2010. One photo taken at the "Sticky Fingers" Children's party in Gate Helmsley, several at the Abbey Nursing Home in Old Malton and the rest in my garden.  Click on the little square at bottom left of the video to see the photo locations.

Thursday, 13 May 2010

The Mayfly (Poem)

The Mayfly

A tranquil scene in sight and sounds
The river and banks where life abounds

The jewelled flash of a Kingfishers wings
And sunlight sparkling in dappled rings

The rippling waters gliding by
Are so tempting to the young Mayfly

A cloud of water sprites who take a chance
And upon these sparkling waters dance

The waters part in a rainbow hued flash
Crystalline droplets falling with a splash

Showers of diamonds from glistening scales
And the hungry trout's leap rarely fails

When his sharp eye is upward glancing
And he catches sight of the Mayfly dancing.

Jackie S Brooks (c)
20th May 2004

Wednesday, 5 May 2010

Finished Boat Neck Sweater

I finished the boat neck sweater finally, after several stops and starts while doing other things, like reading books and doing some gardening now that the weather is beginning to improve, just a little. 

I committed a cardinal sin in not first knitting a gauge/tension square, and the Peter Pan Darling Fleck DK seems to knit up more like chunky.  Also I should have used smaller needles, so the result is a sweater that is longer and rather loose, good to wear with pants though.  The Darling Fleck is a chenille and looks and feels more like a velvety fabric than an ordinary knit, it is very soft and cuddly warm.  I think once I have typed out the complete instructions I might just start knitting another, but do a swatch first this time, and use smaller needles.  I wore the sweater today and it was admired and commented on by several people, so it can't be too bad!

I've read two books recently, one by my favourite author Elizabeth Chadwick, 'The Greatest Knight' a story about William Marshall, Earl of Pembroke, a 12th Century Knight who served four kings and was a man of real integrity.  Elizabeth has a fantastic way of weaving stories around real people and events.  She always keeps me hooked, the house could fall down around my ears and I probably wouldn't notice!  The sequel to this one is called 'The Scarlet Lion.'

The second book was 'Wolfskin' by Juliet Marillier.  It is the first time I have read one of her books, and it also kept me glued, I didn't want to put it down, so now I need to go find the sequel 'Foxmask' - Wolfskin is the tale of a young Viking warrior - Eyvind, who is among the first ship load of Viking settlers to reach the Orkney Islands, they come under a chieftain called Ulf who intends to settle in friendship with the islanders, but due to the ambitions of the Ulf's younger brother Somerled, murder and mayhem follow and Somerled sets himself up as King of the Island, it is up to Eyvind and Nessa, an Orkney Princess, to put a stop to Somerled's reign of terror. 

Now I would like to go visit the Orkney Islands, see the Standing Stones and some of the special places she mentioned that really do exist.  Juliet Marillier has a fan club on Facebook.

Friday, 9 April 2010

Experimental Sweater

One of the sweaters pictured in my last blog is the dusty pink boat neck, it's my favourite and was knitted from a pattern in a magazine some years ago.  I have since lost or mislaid the pattern so decided to try to recreate it.  I spent the weekend counting rows and stitches, decreases and increases, it is a fitted design.  The number of stitches to cast on was easy to work out because the welt, cuffs and neckline are worked in a Double Eyelet rib that is a multiple of 7 + 2 stitches.

Now I've got the pattern roughly worked out I've made a start with some left over acrylic Bergere Barisienne yarn from another project, and some Peter Pan Darling Fleck No. 390 (Lemon), a lovely soft chenille, I only have 250gr of the latter but have sent for more via the Internet.

So far, so good.  If it works out I intend to knit a third sweater in a nice soft Merino, haven't decided what colour yet.

It would be a case of Murphy's Law now if I suddenly find my lost pattern somewhere, though I have searched everywhere, including the attic!

Sunday, 4 April 2010

Photographs and Interfering Cats!

Why is it that cats think they have to supervise everything we humans do, don't they think we are competant, or are they just grabbing the lime-light?  When I photographed my Fishtail and Chalice Lace Socks, Jet had to get into the act, and decided my legs made a good cat basket.

Fishtail Lace Socks and Jet in his 'cat basket.'

When I took a pic of Jim's Triple Rib socks tonight, Rappy had to stick his nose in, right in the camera lens, but they are both so cute I let their pics stay!
Rappy the lens hugger!

Yesterday whilst in town for the Saturday market, I paid a visit to a local dress shop that was closing down that day, and moving stock to smaller premises.  I had asked several months back if the owner would be willing to sell me one of her window dummies, so I brought one home.  Jet and Rappy came into the room after I had set it up, ready to take photo's of some sweaters.  They were both extremely wary, creeping up on it in a low, belly to the floor stalking fashion.  They were both very suspicious of this strange, headless, one-legged, three toe'd creature, and they were not convinced when I told them it was 'armless...!

'Inishmaan' Sweater
An Alice Starmore pattern

The cardigan on the left is a flared lacy pattern  that I knitted several years ago, the centre pic is of a sweater I knitted sideways from cuff to cuff, using up all my odd balls of DK and numerous pattern stitches from the Harmony Guide to Knitting stitches.  The boat neck sweater on the right is one of my favourites, the pattern came from a magazine and unfortunately I have lost it, it has double eyelet rib on welt, cuffs and neckline.

This top from a Wendy pattern was worked in Velvet Flake on large needles, it has a zipper part way down from the collar, even though it is a loose knit and is Acrylic it is extremely warm and cosy, even on the coldest, windiest day.

Chalice Lace Socks, I love this pattern, knitted in Claudia's hand dyed yarn, 'Seashell'

Last but not least, my Fishtail Lace socks knitted in Lorna's Laces yarn, 'Seaside' - the yarn was a gift from a friend and the dyelots were different, which went unnoticed until I started knitting, but I love them anyway, the yarn has a natural striping tendency as can be seen from the toes, but the Fishtail Lace pattern gives it a nice textured and speckled effect I think.

Tuesday, 30 March 2010

Socks, Books and Computer Woe's!

About three weeks ago my computer was attacked by 14 Trojans and 6 virus's, a friend cleaned up my hard drive for me but I am still unable to connect with the Internet so I'm borrowing my DH's computer for this.  

Also due to a pain problem, now hopefully going away, I have spent more time reading than knitting, it helped take my mind off the problem.  I love historical novels, especially those by Elizabeth Chadwick, she writes about real people and events, weaving a wonderful story around them.  I also like adventure and have just finished Nicholas Evans book 'The Smoke Jumpers' - he is also the author of 'The Horse Whisperer' among others.  I was in tears several times whilst reading the The Smoke Jumpers.

When I finally regained my ambition to knit I started on a pair of Chalice Lace Socks in Claudia's hand painted yarn, Seashells, I wanted to do a seashell pattern but didn't care for the one I tried out and ended up choosing the Chalice pattern instead, but was very happy with the result. 

Then I started another pair with Lorna's Laces Seaside yarn and chose the Fishtail pattern.  The yarn has a natural striping effect which is on the soles, but the Fishtail pattern changed the striping to a speckled and textured effect which I really like.  The yarn was a gift and once I had started I realised there were two different dyelots, so I actually have two odd socks, but I don't care, I love them.

I had also started a pair for my DH Jim, in brown 'Whiskey' - it has a slight blue fleck in it, and as it is a fairly dark shade of brown I chose to do a plain 3 knit, 3 purl rib, I'm about two inches above the heel flap right now.

I haven't taken any photo's of the finished pairs yet but as soon as I can get them onto my computer, then transferred to a disc and then onto Flickr, I will add them.

I have bought two of Alice Starmore's books via Amazon, 'Sweaters for Men' and 'The Celtic Collection' - next month I will send for her 'Fishermens Sweaters' book.  In October the book containing the St. Brigid pattern is to be re-published, so I hope to buy that one too, I certainly can't afford the present outrageous prices of the second hand copies.

Now that my pain problem is under control we have started playing Petanque on Sunday afternoons again, and in May will probably play on Wednesday evenings too.  We treated ourselves to an early wedding anniversary present (April Fools Day!) and bought ourselves a set of steel boules.  Our aim seems to have improved with them!!

One of the Petanque club members is a sheep farmer, he offered me another fleece, a beautiful Jacob this time.  He has a flock of Jacobs and lots of lovely little lambs, they were  all bedded on thick straw and looked so clean and cute, some had tiny budding horns.

I still have the four other fleeces to wash as well, so I hope my back behaves...!

Thursday, 18 February 2010

Alice Starmore 'Inishmaan' Sweater

I finally finished my first Alice Starmore sweater, 'Inishmaan' knitted in Loganberry coloured yarn.  The charted cable patterns are easy to follow and once into the swing of things not difficult at all, but keeping a note of what row you are on is important.

The knotwork up the centre front panel is my favourite, the back centre panel is not quite so decorative as the front.  Overall it is a beautiful pattern and very satisfying to finish.  Now I want to knit another of the Starmore patterns, maybe St. Brigid.

I've read in several places that Alice Starmore's books are going to be published again, not before time.  The second hand books available on Amazon are way beyond my price tag. 

This close up is of the front centre panel. 

Thursday, 14 January 2010

Jim's Oversocks for Wellington Boots

I decided I wanted to knit Jim a pair of Submariner socks and bought 200g of DK Acrylic-Wool mix yarn.  Unfortunately it is just a bit too thin for that kind of sock, I really need Aran or maybe even Chunky.

So they are now Oversocks, to be worn over a normal pair of woollen socks and over his pants/trousers.  I started with Judy's Magic Cast-on at the toe, then was going to do k4,p4 rib but decided to do an elongated cable stitch, so every 10th row was the cable.  I knitted them slightly longer than normal on the foot, did a slip stitch heel and then worked another 10 cables plus 5 rows of k2,p2 rib before using the Russian bind-off.  (65 rows total) 

They turned out well, fit comfortably over his normal socks and his pants, and his feet are not cramped within the boot.  So we are both pleased with them.

I still want to knit him a pair of Submariners socks with a cabled cuff to turn over the top of the boot.
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