A little something followed up

I bought some lovely wooden buttons from ebay, one of which was just right for the scarf from the last post. It is on, and ready to head off to its new owner.

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And the rest of the buttons. I like using buttons on cards, so its highly likely thats where some of the smaller ones are headed. Especially given that there’s a couple of heart ones in there and it’s nearly February…

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A little something

I have finished the scarf….well, kind of!

I have, I just made it shorter than it was meant to be, because I’d hit my boredom threshold. It’s still pretty cute though.

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Sometimes, though, you don’t always want a long scarf, say if your coat is tight-fitting and you just want more of a cowl-type thing. At least, that’s what I’m trying to convince myself. The other thought I had was to get a pretty button (and it’s just possible that I may be currently bidding on some pretty wooden floral ones on ebay) and pop that on to keep it fastened, taking advantage of the convenient holey pattern!
And here’s a close up.

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I may even be truly awful and not block it, and just give it a gentle squish under my computer for the evening – a sneaky trick I use way too often to flatten things!

I’ve had a creative lightbulb moment on a wirework project, but alas it has to wait, as I’m about to start something for a friend’s birthday in a few days. I have no idea if this present is going to work as I’m going to have to use double knit wool in two strands as I don’t have the chunky wool the pattern says so off I go to do a boring but necessary swatch.

What’s going on with you?

would’ve, could’ve, am

I had three things to achieve this weekend (aside from the usual Unholy Trinity of housework, shopping, laundry, I mean). I had to:

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make mince pies. Yes, I AM that weirdo that likes them all year round and not just at Christmas.

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make a start to sewing my Christmas present from my little brother and sister-in-law-elect

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and I had to start and preferably finish, something from this, which I bought at a book fair at work. Not least because I also bought a varied crafts book, and I’ve vowed not to even take it out the bag until I’ve finished one item from the knitting one. Tough love time. Because I know that I am way too much of a “why finish one project when I could start a second” girl.

Confession time.

I haven’t made mince pies. I would’ve, but the supermarket had some at half price, so I bought those instead.
I haven’t started sewing the cutest hedgehog in the known universe. I could’ve, but only got as far as reading the instructions to cut the pattern out and I needed a hard surface to do that, but by then we’d lit a fire, and Toby was in the room and…..hmmm.
I haven’t start…NO WAIT, I AM!!!! I AM KNITTING SOMETHING FROM THIS BOOK!!! A pretty lacy scarf. which I only messed up the first row of the four-row pattern twice, before nailing it. Yarning over twice before a slip slip knit was not being my friend. But we had a little chat and we’re good.

I will update my progress tomorrow…but I’m worried I may get distracted by our unexpected supermarket purchase…

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Oh it’s a fun-packed life here!

Playing with prototypes

I’ve spent the last few days playing with prototypes, trying to come up with new designs, new ways of doing old things and just generally trying to learn new things. It’s not often I have enough time to do something like that, which somehow always feels a little like a waste of precious time as it’s not producing something you can give or sell. But I’ve had some enforced vacation time so amidst lots of pottering around achieving not very much, I’ve been playing.
I tend to do this with wool, for a couple of reasons. One, you can unpick wool when you go wrong, and when I’m trying new patterns and stitches I go wrong a lot. A huge lot. The other reason is that I have any amount of wool and its cheaper than wire. But also, once I’ve prototyped it’s nice to keep it for reference, or just for inspiration further down the line.
This is, I think, going to be a cross between a dreamcatcher and a wind-chime. The idea of making wind-chimes has gripped me recently, but I’m struggling on the actually chimey bit right now, so I’m concentrating on the top bit for the moment,, just envisage it in wire, with some tiny iridescent beads..

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This next one is a form of Bruge lace – totally new to me, but I think I’ve got it worked out right. Again, some beading would go on, maybe alternating inside and outside the loops, or just inside, in alternate pairs. Or maybe a big bead every three repeats or so. That’s half the fun, isn’t it – adding your own twist to things.

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FInally, a different direction. This started life as a ring, but the wire was too thick and bulky, I think. So I debated turning it into a pendant of some sort, but it felt like something was missing, so I added a little tear drop bead. I wasn’t overly keen on it but taking it out to photograph it this morning I’m liking it a bit more.

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The fun part is what Im going to do tonight, where I take my notebook, look at the design and try to decide where the beads go and how do I get them there!
What’s everyone else up to?

Babies come with hats

For my birthday earlier in the year, my lovely brother and his incredibly talented partern, http://www.missfortune.co.uk got me some Amazon vouchers. It was perfect timing, because I’d just decided to treat myself to some circular knitting needles, as it’s an area of knitting I’d never tried. I found some bamboo ones and something about them seemed to shout to me…and so I bought them. And, seeing as the company selling them also had bamboo straight one…well, it would have been rude not to, right?

I have to say, they’re a joy to use. I no longer get cramp in my hand or tired shoulders, and I love the feel of them, both in my hands and when the slide against one another, you dont get that metal-against-metal buzz that can set your teeth on edge. So what to choose for my first foray into circular knitting? Well, as these things often do, the right thing came along when I needed it. My friend Kelly is due Baby number 2 in a couple of weeks. But I’d done her bootees for the first one and wanted something a bit more. And then I found this http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/bunny-beanie How gorgeous is that?!

It started off well,

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and it was pretty straightforward, if a little weird feeling, and then I got to the crown. I only had about 9 stiches on and they barely filled the straight bit of the needle, let alone going all the way round. So I improvise, and used the next size needle and continued as if they were either end of a circular set. And I really don’t think you can tell. But if anyone has tips on that, let me know!

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So there was a hat….and now it needed ears.

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I actually think the ears were harder than the hat itself! I think if I were to do it again, I’d probably come up with a different take on it, they really were fiddly. But I think it was worth it…..

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Kelly loved it – and the amount of people who said “I want one in my size!” was quite terrifying! (Not that I hadn’t thought it myself!) So all in all, a fairly happy first use of circular needles, with a little help.

What’s next?