Sunday, August 19, 2007

Luverly Bloggers

Boy you lot sure know how to swell a girls head!!! The comments I've received have been just lovely, in particular about Foxglove. I can't tell you how much they made me smile ;) I should have mentioned last post too that all your comments on the awful time I'd been having really did cheer me up. Hugs through the internet really do work!

I'm yet again behind on blog reading and desperately trying to catch. And so jealous of those of you who manage to keep up with everyone's blogs!!! I have enough trouble keeping mine updated........

All the new seasons books and yarns are out for preview, if not all out for fondling. And finally my copy of Rowan 42 turned up. It had already arrived in the US and New Zealand so frustrating not to have it here. Not helped by the postal strike of course. I actually like the mag much more in the flesh, although there are only 2 patterns I'd consider making. And realistically I'm not sure I will make either. I know most people love it, but I'm not one of them. Many of the designs contain mohair, and of course I'm one of the many allergic to it. There are also a lot of wraps or shapeless blanket looking garments held together with a pin. These would drown me, I need fitted things please. Some of the designs I find really quite hideous, and it was quite amusing looking through with DH and hearing his reaction which was far from complimentary, apart from 3 designs. But never mind, I always make more from the spring/summer mag. It has made me miss Kim Hargreaves and her Big Wool designs though. Only the first Rowan Big Wool booklet produced after she left did nothing for me and I haven't bought last years and won't be buying the latest one either.

But the lovely Pure Noro arrived full of Jane Ellison's gorgeous designs and this one definitely lives up to expectations. There are several designs I like though this time there are no accessories in it, which I do miss a little. You can't have enough accessories now can you?

Talking of accessories, well obviously you can't see the new season in with just one mag and a book so after seeing KnitDevil's gorgeous Pick Up Sticks Triangle Bag knew I had to have one. This led me to the Pick Up Sticks website where I discovered even more lovely patterns and kits so obviously had to have several. I found an online seller Supercrafty that has very reasonable shipping and had several items I wanted. She also has an Ebay store with some items there too and is very friendly and quick to respond.

The rest I ordered from Pick Up Sticks direct after emailing asking if they shipped to the UK as it wasn't too clear on the site. Needless to day, they do ship and were exceptionally helpful with a shipping problem I had. So much so that I have to place another order for Snugs which are too cute for words with umm, a couple more bits. Me, addicted, nope, not really. Well, maybe a little. But their patterns and kits are truly amazing and I'm so pleased with them. Plus currently if you spend over $25 your get a free pattern which is just lovely too. Their designs are truly unusual and I have to make them all!!!

Then I discovered The Woolly Workshop have just got some Louis Gems sock yarn so of course I ordered that the second I discovered it, which was a few hours before the newsletter even went out. Oh I can't tell you how good my internet splurge felt. But then again, many of you already know exactly how that feels LOL! And isn't the colourway Cherry Blossom so pretty? More colours are to come - perhaps I'd better not look!

These are the colours I chose for my Felted Triangle Bag and can't wait till its finished. I just know it will be fabulous. It was great fun choosing the colours at Get Knitted too as the colours online aren't quite what you always expect so I needed to choose them myself. I wanted the brightest colours possible. I think I managed it and will be like a beacon, you'll see me for miles ;)

I've ordered my train tickets for the Knitting and Stitching Show on Thurs 11th October and am looking forward to that. Apart from getting an 8pm train home as that was the only direct train after 6pm. Crazy. I would have booked the 6pm if I could but couldn't get any reasonable priced tickets. As I'll be on my own I don't want to go changing trains with bags at night (I'm sure there will be bags of course......)

Chilli's paw seems to have healed very well and we've not had to take him back to the vet thankfully. Thunder has gotten even more jealous and whenever I have my knitting next to me will jump on the sofa and lay on the knitting or even sit on my laptop if its in his way. As long as he can sit next to me and get cuddles and head rubs, nothing will get in his way.! He used to wait until there was room or look longingly. He's given that up. Just dives up and crashes over whatever happens to be there. Funny thing he is. He's 2 now. Bless ;)

And for anyone that hasn't heard, Get Knitted will be stocking Knitpicks needles including the much loved Options. Yes, finally there will be a UK stockist. I must be the only one not particualrly bothered by this - the needles are metal and I don't do metal. If they were bamboo or birch that would be different. I'd be like a mad crazy thing. But it gets better! The Malabrigo Worsted has finally arrived at Get Knitted and obviously I have to have some more. I even thought about not mentioning it in case it flies out the door too quick. For anyone that wanted to try some, here's your chance. I don't think you'll be disappointed........

And having Malabrigo at Get Knitted makes up for the disappointment of not being able to visit Stash Yarns in Putney when we visit my dad next week. Unfortunately I only found out the shop will be closed for its holidays after I'd booked the train tickets. Piddle. Of course Stash is where I first discovered the much loved and coveted Malabrigo.

I have actually been knitting though everything seems to be in that in between stage and not worth a picture. However I'm so pleased I've actually finished one Widdershins/Grasshopper sock in Socks That Rock Silkie. I won't go into much detail as I'm working on the 2nd sock and don't want to put myself off any more, but this pattern has been pure torture. Never, ever again will I do a toe up sock with a heel flap. Yuck! BTW, the extra large buttons I got from the new LYS I visited recently in Clevedon.

At least though the Socks That Rock promised by DH arrived and waiting patiently their turn. This time we have Pebble Beach and Jailhouse Rock. Needless to say, they will either be top down with a heel flap, or maybe toe up but with a garter stitch heel. Not that other awful not be mentioned version I'm currently regretting I ever started :(

And of course I can't forget the bits I ordered from The Wool Sanctuary either. The yarn is for a bag that I started.......and promptly left to start something else!

Gotta go - had 4 knitting mags in the post Friday including Vogue Knitting International and Interweave Knits that are demanding attention. Yippee ;)

Wednesday, August 01, 2007


Yup, its that time of year again when all the new collections and pattern books are due out. I'm excited about the new Rowan mag which I'm waiting for and also Jane Ellison's new Noro book. Though I've succumbed to the Rowan 42 previews and definitely don't like what I've seen so far......though I'm hoping there's more in the mag I do like when it does arrive. Yarnwise I don't think there's anything coming out to thrill me, a lot of it has mohair or something else I'm allergic to but thats ok, I have plenty in my stash including some Noro Kochoran and plenty of Noro Iro just waiting to be knitted up. I really can't wait to put away all my summer projects and get started on something for autumn. Not exactly helped by the awful weather and floods we've had in the UK, though thankfully everything seems to have settled down the last few days and we've had some lovely sunny days.

I've not had a chance to wear either of the summer vesty type tops I made from Summer Tweed earlier this year which is a shame. Maybe next year eh? Though I'm hoping to get some wear of the Crochet Trimmed Hoodie from Blue Sky and when its finished of course. I'm on the sleeves, but of course all the edgings have to be done then. Why have I chosen so many projects with edgings that take longer than the main garment to complete??? Remind me not to do it again, it really is not the best of ideas and looks like I've knitted a lot less this year.

You'll be pleased to hear that no major events have happened over the last couple of weeks and I'm just so relieved. I've finally gotten my car back from the garage which of course is now costing more than expected and was also in for longer than expected which was such an inconvenience. Add that to a very expensive van service for DH at a new garage that we won't be using again. But neither of these has stressed me out for long though I was very annoyed when 2 of the guys at worked were mucking about and sprayed deodorant behind me!!! Of course that set off my allergies and I was back to full meds for asthma and of course my exzema flared up badly. I really could have done without that but all things considered, it hasn't been a bad couple of weeks.

We joined our local Gala bingo hall and had a good night out a couple of Saturdays ago. I love bingo though usually only play online every now and then, but now that there's no smoking inside we thought we'd try it out. It was fun, though extremely tiring as we had to concentrate so much. We must have enjoyed it though as we've been back twice since! DH loves it, which is good.

And I even wore the much stressed over Foxglove in Rowan Calmer that is finally finished and a certified FO! Oh the relief, I can't tell you. I was very close to chucking it out the window BUT after finishing the belt etc decided it was rather nice actually. DH loves it and says I looks very pretty in it ;)

I really need to tackle the rest of my almost FO's including the long avoided Tulip. I'lll feel better when its done, really, I'm sure I will. Yes, I'm trying to persuade myself.......

We also went to see Harry Potter & The Order of The Phoenix which was quite enjoyable once it got going. I found the beginning terribly boring but luckily had brought some knitting so that kept me out of trouble till it got more exciting. We even managed a couple of trips to the beach and pier on the few sunny days we've had which was also made much more enjoyable without any smokers. It really makes a huge difference ;)

Back to knitting news. The shock of the week was that Rowan yarns have come to Weston. Yes, really! The Wool Sanctuary has its official opening day on Sat 11th August and is the brainchild of the very lovely Suzie Johnston who has worked for Rowan for a number of years and who hosted the very popular John Lewis Saturday knitclub at Cribbs Causeway, Bristol. She will open for appointments in the evenings during the week and during the day at weekends and hosts a Saturday knitclub where you can even have lunch. Of course I've already been round and sank into a very comfy sofa whilst drinking a cup of earl grey tea AND looking at yarn. What more can you ask for! Suzie will be hosting workshops too and these are all detailed on the site and look most interesting.

Another surprise was that Jaeger will be discontinued. I think we all knew it was on the cards but seeing as new yarn ranges were only brought out in Spring, I didn't expect it would happen this quickly. I'm not too bothered as long as I have enough Extra Fine Merino Chunky to finish a cardi thats been waiting patiently since last year!

If that wasn't enough I discovered a yarn store in Clevedon, which is one junction away from us on the M5. It stocks a little Rowan, and other cheaper brands with a little Lorna's Laces. But also has fabric, haberdashery, needlepoint supplies and will be quite handy when I need bag lining fabric. More interestingly though is a lovely holistic store that stocks many of the organic toiletries I need to buy online or have to travel into central Bristol for, and even better, has a treatment centre downstairs for various holistic treatments and even allergy testing!!! So I might have to book myself in for that.

My much frogged Walking on the Wild Tide STR Silkie yarn is happily turning to socks. Strangely enough the fabric from 2.25mm needles was a little too firm and lost of all its softness and silkiness so I frogged yet again and they're going quite well on 2.5mm, being a cross between Widdershins and Grasshoppers, which is basically the same toe-up style. Mind you, I'm about to turn the heel and don't yet know if they will actully fit ok yet. It has to be said, this is what puts me off toe-up socks. Hopefully they will be fine, as I'm not sure the yarn or me are up to any more frogging really!