Sunday, January 19, 2014

Raspberry Red

This is my jumper amendment that's going on at the minute. The jumper on the bottom is acting as a template against which to measure how long I need to knit the sleeve. The jumper on top is, of course, the short-sleeved jumper the sleeve will be knitted onto. When I told my husband what I was doing he was sure I must be pulling his leg!
I'm loving knitting in this raspberry red colour. It's so jolly and cheerful. I never knit in this colour scheme. The closest I get is a warm yellow/honey colour. Mostly I go for blues, which I know suit my hair and skin colouring, and greens, which I also love. I might have to knit a whole jumper in this wool.

I've been feeling particularly off-kilter since Boxing Day, when I came down with a cold. We had some pre-Christmas animal loss, which I always find difficult. A goose escaped, and then one of our chicks was killed by a visiting dog. As soon as I take on responsibility for an animal I feel an absolute attachment to it. Of course, I'm fonder of some than of others, but I still find it difficult to watch an animal in distress. The goose and the chick winded me, and then there was all the Christmas shenanigans to contend with, and so my immunity was low when my great-niece Lucy coughed all over me on Christmas Day. And I haven't felt quite at full robust-ness since. 

My first 'Experimental Fiction' class was really great mid-week. The tutor had an understated, laid back, but still knew what he was talking about style, which I liked.  

Sunday, January 12, 2014

The jumper I wish I'd never knitted

Sure, it looks good in the photo, maybe something to do with the beautiful model, but knitting this jumper in real life has taken me, I believe, seven years.
Today I decided to sew in all the loose ends, and insert the V in the neckline. I thought I might even get as far as sewing it together and be able to consign it to the 'finished' pile. But when I came to sew in the loose ends, of which there were a few (explanation later) I found A HOLE!. Just near the top left hand shoulder front. Both the purple wool and the green wool had broken at exactly the same point.
To mend it I pulled, distorting the gauge because there was no give, and tied the ends as best I could and then I put clear nail varnish over the knots, because at this stage there was nothing else I could think to do.

I carried on, only to find ANOTHER hole in the ribbing on the back, so I darned that as best I could, not even bothering about the aesthetic of how it would look. I'm now on the final sleeve, sewing in the loose ends and I've found yet another hole. This time the green wool has snapped.

This jumper has been plagued with problems. The moral of the story is not to buy wool so far in advance of knitting the garment that the wool is discontinued and so there is no hope of returning it to the shop for a refund or another ball. The final ball of purple wool I used had so many frays in it I had to continually break it and re-introduce it into the sleeve (so, lots of ends - another annoyance). Then I ran out of green wool at the top of the last sleeve and had to use different wool/different colour to finish it off. 

I'll finish patching it together as best I can and then use it as a run around jumper. Maybe it'll be good for when I'm cleaning out the chickens. And if I get any more holes I'll put a whopping great patch on it.


Saturday, January 11, 2014

Jumper # 1

I finished a jumper! The first out of five (jumper # 4 has been knitted; jumper # 5 is halfway through).

It's from Vintage Knits, Sarah Dallas. I've knitted it before, years ago, in a muted purple Jaeger 4 ply.

This is alpaca, and it is so soft and utterly lovely.

Jumper # 2 is lined up to be worked on tomorrow. It feels good!

Monday, January 06, 2014

One for me, one for you

I like thinking of new things to make, so making aprons out of oilcloth I bought in John Lewis was a really fun project. I made one for myself...
...and one for my neighbours. I got the ties from Edinburgh Fabrics (I think that's what it's called - a great fabric/haberdashers I pass on my way into town).
I also put this adjustable part on my neighbours' apron (my ties are fixed). I think it does what I intended it to do! Will have to buy more as I love things like this.
I have a wee bit of oilcloth left so I might make another bag. I'm also thinking of buying different oilcloth to make more aprons/bags. John Lewis has a great range, but the Cath Kidston shop also sells oilcloth occasionally. I thought about making a rain mac out of it too.
And a gratuitous shot of my great niece Lucy on Christmas Day. She's a great wee character. The first girl to be born into our family since me! She has unruly ginger hair, which she won't let anyone brush. She looked especially cute in her dress, jumper and boots, riding her new horse.

Sunday, January 05, 2014

Jumpers on the brain

I have three short-sleeved jumpers, knitted years ago (my first attempts at the Sarah Dallas Vintage Knits jumpers), that I like very much but NEVER wear. When is there a call to wear a short-sleeved jumper? The next three jumpers I knitted to this pattern (because I like the pattern very much) were all long-sleeved, two of which (the third I've just finished knitting) get worn all the time. So I've decided to turn my short-sleeved jumpers into long-sleeved jumpers, by knitting a contrasting 'sleeve' to join under the rib. I didn't really mean to begin knitting this, but I had a leftover ball of 'avocado Rowan 4-ply pure wool' and nothing to knit, so I cast on and have almost finished the first add-on sleeve. I'll have to go to John Lewis tomorrow and get another ball. Hopefully the dye lot won't be too far away from this one!
The other two jumpers both have a raspberry pinky/red as the contrasting colour, so I'll also buy four balls of that. I don't mind if they look a bit odd.

I have a COMPLETE fetish over jumpers at the moment. I can't stop knitting them (jumper 4 out of 5 just finished) or buying them. I got two lovely tweedy jumpers from the Boden sale: one a gorgeous purple, the other an off-white/oatmeal. 

Anyway. I'll upload progress as I go. More jumper goodness coming soon!