Wednesday, 23 September 2009

Pretty yarn

I have no other reason for posting these pictures other than the fact that I think that the yarn is pretty. I love looking at yarn whether it be in real life or pictures I'm that much of a yarn junky, and I assume that everyone else is too :d
This is my haul from the iknit weekend. A modest one I feel. The Peaches and Creme was the only thing bought on impulse. I just love how nice it is to knit with and this colour was pretty enough to catch my eye. I'm not sure what I want to make with it- probably some kind of washcloth or shopping bag. It matches the colours in my bathroom pretty well so instead of making things for other people (which would be what would normally happen with something like this) I might try and pick something out for me.
The two browns are Cascade 220. I want to make this pattern (Ravelry link). I want it to go with my new green dress that makes me look a bit like an elf. It seemed appropriate somehow. It will be the first time using this yarn- it's one I have heard a lot about what with it being quite popular in America so it will be nice to finally get to some first hand experience of it. The two photos don't really do the colours justice. They are much richer and a little more chestnutty.

My final purchase was of some Malabrigo. I got my first skein of this in a swap earlier in the year and it's just so nice that I had to have some more. This was the one thing that I had plans to purchase before I left. I got a sock weight yarn- mostly because I am addicted to socks. The colour was one that I have had my eye for a while. Totally enabled by my friends in America, horrible enablers that they are.

Friday, 18 September 2009

Guild Swap parcel & iKnit weekender

Last weekend was the iKnit weekender event that was being held in London. I hadn't been down to this event before. It is the fourth knitting event that I have been to this year- I think that if I want the full set then I shall have to go to Alexandra Palace in October as well. I'm still in two minds about that event as I do by now have quite a large stash of yummy yarn to play with and just recently I have been aware of my resolution for this year to not buy so much yarn. A resolution which I have quite obviously not only broken but dropped on the floor and stamped on as well.
On this occasion though, I was going mostly out of curiosity rather than for the yarn buying opportunities as I had heard a lot about both the shop iknit and the weekend show. I also knew from a previous swap that it is one of the few places that has a good stock of Malabrigo yarn in this country so I wanted to see that too. And maybe buy a little bit :D
Before I show you the yarn that I got though I want to rave about something else entirely. Whilst I was in London I managed to meet up with my buddy from the Ravelry group 'Ankh-Morpork Knitters Guild' (who is just wonderful) who gave me part 2 of my 'Guild Swap' parcel.

OH MY GOSH! I cycled between speechless and stunned to squeeing madly. Wow! I was totally spoilt in this swap. Here let me show you:

Picture of all the things that were in the bag (above) and a close-up (below):

Contents from top left:
  • Yarn holder in the shape of a dung ball (heehee),
  • x2 skeins of sock wool from The Knitting Goddess (enough for one pair of socks)
  • Peeking out in yellow the amazing dung beetle bag (another photo of this in a moment)
  • Great A’Tuin tape measure which matches my bug bag and is so much fun to play with
  • Tiny elastic bands for holding needles (already in use in my sock knitting bag)
  • Some SOAK for keeping fibres fresh
  • Felted sheep keyring (on keyring at work)
  • Some black beads to go with other ball of yarn
  • Buttons! see next pic
  • A skein of Schaefer Yarn Anne in red, purple and brown (beads go with this)
  • Finally, and not pictured anywhere, two patterns- one for the Entomology Shawl (Schaefer Yarn + beads for this one) and for ‘Cut your Teeth’ socks (red & black sock yarn for that).
  • Also, I just remembered- there is a lovely ladybird pin brooch as well that didn’t make it into the photo as I was wearing it at the time :D
I’m going to have to take another picture of the bag as well as these ones just don’t do it justice! My buddy did an amazing job of it. The clasp looks like bug eyes, there are little legs attached, handmade cord for the strap and all of the above underneath its elytra- pocket for dpns, pocket for yarn cutter, pin cushion and in the pocket under that there are some embroidery needles. And on top of that it has all been embellished and intitalised. ! ! ! and did I mention !

Here are all the wonderful buttons that I got. I was so pleased to see the little wooden ant ones. Some of you may remember that I bought some of these when I went to the UK Ravelry day in Coventry- well, I finally found a use for them but I didn't have enough :( Now I do however! :D
I'm making a long sleeved shrug (well, made by now, I'm a little behind on the posting here). Here's the link for Ravelry if anyone wants to see though I haven't managed to take photos yet as I need someone else to take them for me- or model the shrug for me though I'm not sure anyone is going to want to do that. All my friends are a bit camera shy.

Anyway- WONDERFUL swap package as I am sure you can all appreciate. There will be more things to tell y'all about just as soon as my ball winder arrives. I ordered it a couple of weeks ago and I'm expecting it to be here soon. As soon as that happens I can cast on for my Entomology shawl (woohoo). Though this will distract me from the Swallowtail shawl that I am supposed to be doing for my mum for Christmas. I can see that my 'dung ball' is going to be well employed over the next few months.

Saturday, 5 September 2009

A proud moment

I recently participated in another swap through the Ankh-Morpork Knitters Guild on Ravelry. The theme for this one was A-M Guilds- we each had to pick a Guild that we felt best represented us and then build our packages around our buddies theme. I picked out the Guild of Cunning Artificers for myself though I really wanted to be in the Assassins Guild I knew that I just wouldn't have the stomach for it. My buddy on the other hand, picked out the Guild of Sandras which is for real seamstresses. The Guild of Seamstresses in A-M is a rather euphemistically named guild which has little to do with the guild members real occupations.
However, I digress.
My buddies choice of guild gave me a few problems at first, especially as it transpired that they don't actually do all that much sewing but then it occurred to me that this might just be the perfect moment to make a little something that had been rattling around in my head for a while.
I wasn't sure if it was the quite the right thing to make but it was too good an opportunity to miss- that and it made me giggle at a mile a minute.
So after much prepping and planning, testing and retesting this is what I came up with:

Yes people, it's a cross-stitched "buggrit millennium hand and shrimp". If that doesn't make any sense to you then you need to read this Wiki entry about Foul Ole Ron, one of the beggars of Ankh-Morpork as it's his catchphrase.
The little shrimp design came from somewhere on the internet- I wish I could remember where. When I was designing this I scoured the web and made a ton of notes and then just picked the best bits when it came to the actual sewing. I didn't keep decent notes though hence the fail.
I have to admit though that when it came to putting it into the swap box it was a bit of a struggle to let go. I was super chuffed with how it all came out. I think this will keep me going for a while and it definitely counts as a proud moment for me. Out of all of the things I have crafted this has got to be one of my favourites.