Wednesday, September 07, 2011

Blanket madness

I have decided to (maybe) finish one of my many blanket WIPs before I embarked on another blanket adventure. I love the Beekeeper's Quilt or the Hexipuff, as I call it. I envisage that to be a LONG term project - one which will take years and years to complete!
So, in a rare moment of focus, I sewed up tons of small miters into bigger miters and joined up all the miters into strips and then, the 3 strips together. This is what I got. It's a good lap-sized blanket (3x4 squares). Hubby decided that it was too small and it needs to be at least 4x5 squares - so here I am knitting a yet more squares. I haven't even thought about the edging - and that will require more focus.
Kim - my summer tank was a little creation from me. It was knitted in the round from bottom up with no shaping. It would be the perfect top if I could find the right yarn. The bamboo tape is annoying!

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Summer tank

I have knitted myself a summer tank in Rowan Bamboo Tape that was on sale few ago. I now know why it was on sale. It grows, and grows, and grows and i think it's still growing some more. And the annoying thing is that I made a swatch and washed it and took into consideration that it would grow. Oh well - you live and learn. Anyway, here it is when it still vaguely fits me!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

My baby's all grown up

The one thing I dislike about summer holidays - how little time I have. Blink and suddenly it's mid August. I swear - how did that happen?? There's one important event that happens in August - Zoe's birthday! She turned 4 earlier in the month (again - where does the time go!!) We had a little party for her. I knitted her a cute little sundress. She's happy as a clam. Happy birthday my little darling.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Knit Nation part 2

Knit Nation was amazing. It was fun. I had a great time catching up with old friends, making new friends and honing new skills. I was part of the volunteer crew again this year. But this year, my friend, Kate and I were in charge of the Knit Nation and Socktopus Stand. We were selling Knit Nation merchandise of mugs and projects bags and Sokkusu O yarns. It's the first time where we've had a range of the colourways available to purchase. Everyone seemed to enjoy being able to fondle the yarn - which is amazingly squishy and soft!

This was the selection of colours that we had - most of them proved very popular.
And we had a selection of socks knitted up in the yummy yarns. No - I didn't knit all of them. I knitted 1 pair - the red ones! The socks will be appearing in Alice's new book - Socktopus.
The trouble with manning a yarn stall is that after 3 days of being surrounded by yarn, I didn't have much desire to shop for yarns! Isn't that just awful! Fear not - I did buy some yarns, a project bag and some fun notions. But that's for another post!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Knit nation - Part 1 - all about the shawls!

I've suddenly realised that I haven't updated my blog in ages!!!! So - firstly, I must apologise for not doing that. Secondly - it was because I've been super busy doing mummy things - like attending the children's Summer concerts, end of term parties, birthday parties etc,etc and also getting ready for Knit Nation!

Alice from Socktopus was showcasing the Sokkusu yarn at the show. I had volunteered to knit up some shawl samples for the show. In the period of 4 weeks (give or take a day or two), I transformed myself into a shawl knitting monster and finished (and blocked!) 3 shawls!! Dear readers - if you're surprised, so was I.

The first shawl I finished was a Swallowtail in Sokkusu O in Denim Blue. The only modification I made was to not knit the nupps in the edgings, not because I don't like them, but because I wasn't sure if I'd have enough yardage. Looking at what I have left, I needn't have worried!!

Next up is Gail (aka Nightsongs) in Sokkusu O in Fontainebleu. I made 1 small modification in the pattern - I didn't knit the double YO's in the centre of the shawl, instead I knitted a centre stitch. Looks pretty good!

Last but not least, it's Gingko Shawlette in Sokkusu O in Goldenrod. This shawl nearly didn't get finished on time! I finished it at 12.30 midnight and was blocking by 1 am. By the time I took it to Knit Nation at 7am in the morning, it was still slightly damp! I think the shawlette is a bit on the small side. I think I will undo the edging and make a few more repeats of the leaves.

One final word - it's about the yarn! It is sooo lovely to knit with. It's a high twist, superwash merino - custom milled for Socktopus. It's extremely squishy and soft. The stitch definition is amazing. Anyway, I'll sign off now - as that's more than 1 word. My next post will be about KNIT NATION and the amazing time I had!!!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Strawberry Pimms cupcake

I've been busy on the baking front - cupcake baking, to be exact. The task was set on cupcake challenge to bake up cupcakes using at least 2 of the 6 ingredients as set. This month's ingredients are strawberries, Pimms No 1, lemonade, orange, mint and cucumber. I've gone for the easy combination of strawberry, Pimms and lemonade. I made a Pimms syrup and soaked the strawberries in it (for the adults). For the kids, I soaked the strawberries in a lemonade syrup. I used a basic vanilla cupcake recipe and placed the strawberries in the middle of each cupcake. The icing is some fresh double cream whipped with a small amount of icing sugar.

It turned out really well. I think for the adults, I'll drizzle some Pimms over the cupcakes for an added kick. Yum!

Thursday, June 09, 2011


My BFF had a road trip to to Germany which included a trip to Munich. You know what's just outside of Munich -The Wollmeise Store. I researched into colours which I liked, gave her a list and this is what I got. (Actually, the Turkise Markise and Graf Ratz was from Marja in her destash, and My Old Blue Jeans and petit Poison No5 Light was from Knit Nation last year)

I notice I like certain colours, quite dark colours.

Saturday, June 04, 2011

Cola cupcakes

I think I'm going to get fat, very fat. I bought a new cookbook and it has amazing cakes, cupcakes, cheesecakes, whoopie pies, cookies, biscuits etc......... It's the Hummingbird Bakery Cake Days book.
We've decided to try out the Cola cupcake recipe. And it is good! And easy to make.

If you like cupcakes, you should check out the Cupcake Challenge blog. I intend to participate in it - any excuse to make more cupcakes!

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Watermelon socks

Remember when Aidan dyed his own yarn and I knitted him a pair of socks. Well - the girls decided to play the jealousy card and insisted they needed to dye their own yarn and I had to knit them socks too. What could I do except give in! I had some undyed sock yarn, out-of-date Kool Aid packets and some time on my hands - so we embarked on a little home-dyeing.

Zoe insisted that her socks had to be Watermelon socks. She was very definite about this point as 3 year olds can be. Unfortunately, I had only 1 packet of lime flavour, so the green is a bit washed out. I even added Berry Blue to brighten it. It's still not quite right - but it'll do.I'm making short socks - plain vanilla socks. Hopefully, they'll be done in no time at all.
Speaking of watermelon - I love Watermelon Martinis. I usually make them over summer. I haven't made any it this year!! I guess I should rectify this soon! I make mine with these ingredients:

Fresh watermelon juice
Fresh lime juice
Extra vodka
Sugar syrup

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Socks for my little man

Remember back in March when Aidan learned to dye yarn with Alice - well, he's finally persuaded/begged me to knit up some socks for him. We checked out some patterns from my books and from Ravelry and he decided he liked 3x1 ribbed socks with short row heels. Luckily, he has small feet and skinny legs, so I could make quite fast progress. In less than a week, they're finished. He's very proud of his colourway and has even named it. It's Poseidon. (And it might even appear in Alice's shop - Socktopus!)

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Shawls, shawls, shawls

In the last 2 weeks, I was a demon with the shawl knitting. Not only did I finish 1 shawl, I finished 2 shawls. I mean - who would have thought that!!!

First up - Spriteling. Remember that lump of pinkiness, well it became this. Isn't it gorgeous. I have to say big thank you to Alice for a gorgeous design and a fun Mystery KAL.

Next up, Holden Shawlette.

Thursday, May 05, 2011

Unearthing treasures

Way back in 2005 (OMG -that's 6 years ago!!) I started knitting a whole bunch of mitred squares when the first Mason Dixon book came out. I'd occasionally knit a square or 2 over the years but did nothing with it for forever. As I was tidying up one day, I found a boxful of squares. I don't remember what I intended to do with the arrangements of the squares, so I just put them together and spent some time sewing up. Look what I managed to do in a few days.

The original plan was to knit a blanket big enough for my super king bed. The revised plan is knit a few more squares so that the blanket measures 3 x 4 big squares. I have 7 finished squares so far, so I might have a finished blanket in the not too distant future. (Please don't let it be another 6 years!)

Friday, April 29, 2011

Weddings, princesses and tiaras

Wasn't the wedding beautiful! I enjoyed watching it, especially with my 2 little princesses. They work up early this morning and insisted that they needed to be princesses for the day, just like Princess Catherine! (I know, she's the Duchess of Cambridge but she'll always be Princess Catherine to me). The other thing they insisted was that they needed tiaras - pretty, sparkly ones - that needed to be made by mummy, right this minute.

So with one eye on the proceedings, I managed to whip up 2 tiaras for the princesses. One is pink and sparkly and the other is peach and sparkly. They were certainly happy with the tiaras! (The tiaras were wire wrapped beads on a metal headband - I made it up as I went along!)

What I loved about today:
- it brought everyone together. There was an amazingly large crowd who was just enjoying the day with the happy couple. Street parties are still taking place all over the UK!
- the affection between the happy couple
- the weather stayed dry. It was cool and windy, but dry!
- there was no terrorist bombing/shooting
- And the Dress - She looked beautiful.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Spring Spriteling

I love Mystery Knit-alongs. I joined the Spriteling Mystery Shawl-a-long on Ravelry. The design is by Alice and can be found here. We get a clue every 2 weeks. I cast on in early April and I'm now on clue number 2.

I'm knitting this is Dream in Color Smooshy in Wisterious. So far it looks like a heap of mess but I'm looking forward to finishing it. Can't wait!!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Little shells

One of the things I enjoy about going on holiday is the escape from mundane daily duties. And in place, having the time to knit and to enjoy my knitting. I managed to finish a project and start a few new things while on holiday.

This is Little Shells. The pattern calls for it to be knitted in DK weight yarn but I decided to knit it in fingering weight yarn. The yarn is Sunshine Yarns Classic sock in Swedish Short Snout Dragon. Due to the finer gauge, I had to make a few adjustments to the calculations. I made the stockinette section much bigger but kept the lace section the same. It was a very quick and easy knit, the hardest thing was remembering to make the correct number of yo's.

The minute I started knitting it, Keira asked if she could have it. So I said yes. She couldn't wait to wear it once I had finished it. Here it is on its first outing - unblocked and with ends still not sewn in!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

More of Portugal

More conventional pics of my trip:
The cliffs at Ponta de Piedade:
One of the few family shots:

A pottery store which had the whole storefront covered in plates and bowlsEvidence that I was knitting:

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Sun and fun

I've been a well-deserved break. We took a trip to Portugal - to Lagos, in the Algarve. I've never visited that part of Portugal before, so it was all exciting. The main aim was to get out of London, get some sun and have some fun. That we did! I managed to knit quite a lot, read quite a lot and ate quite a lot!

Standing over a very high cliff in Arrifana, near Aljezur on a very windy day!

On a castle built in the 13th century

Walking down the cliffs in Ponta da Piedade, near the lighthouse

At the beach in Porto Mos - sandcastles built by the kids

Walking on the river beach in Carrapateira

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

A boy on his dyeing adventure

I had spent the day with Alice, helping out in her studio with the dyeing business. Aidan was with me as he was already on his Easter holidays. He was a helpful little minion for us - he soaked yarn, helped with the rinsing, blocked 6 different socks, did little errands and the best part, didn't complain at ALL, not once! As a reward, Alice let him dye up his own skein of yarn. Here's his effort - in Royal Blue, Navy and Green. He's very proud and pleased with his effort. He carried the wet yarn home, lovingly in his arms. He wants me to knit socks for him. I guess, I'll have to!

Saturday, March 26, 2011


I've not knitted many shawls but I'm developing a real fascination with them at the moment. My Ravelry queue and faves are full of shawls.

A few that I love: (links to Ravelry)

Gail (Nightsongs)
Travelling Woman
Anything by Susanna IC

I've decided to cast on for a shawl (more likely shawlette). The shawl that made first choice - Little Shells. Keira's already laid claim to it and I've only knitted 20 odd rows!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Spring has finally sprung!

We've had 2 warm days and sunshine galore. It's equinox tonight - that means the days are getting longer, more sunshine, more warmth, barbeques, picnics, parks, outdoor time are all coming up. Can you tell I'm a bit high from the thought of spring and summer being round the corner??

Wednesday, March 09, 2011


I'm doing some secret knitting at the moment - nothing I can blog about, yet. But this is a good opportunity to show my new distraction. I'm being pressed by a certain little girl to make her a quilt. I've been putting together the fabric and I'm happy with what I have. Now, I just need to have some time to make this darn quilt. Oh yeah - I need to figure out a pattern too!

Thursday, March 03, 2011

More, more, more

More pics from the Knitting for Children book - I have a copy in my hands!!! Please excuse Aidan's goofy smile - he did have 2 very wobbly front teeth! I am such a proud mummy!!