Monday, 14 November 2016

Busy Being Retired

Ten weeks into my husband's retirement and we have settled into a lovely routine.  We potter around the house and garden, go for long country walks and watch a lot of sport on television.

We've been enjoying plenty of walks along the Leeds and Liverpool Canal.  The canal is 127 miles long and this year there have been celebrations to mark 200 years since its completion.


It really is a beautiful and peaceful place for a stroll.

And besides all this loveliness, I'm finding lots of time for knitting.

The past six weeks have flown by in terms of my knitting projects.  I've been joining in with a stranded knitting KAL with one of the groups I belong to on Ravelry.  I've put links to the relevant Ravelry project pages for each project.  Since chatting to you last time, and sharing my Fair Isle cardigan, I've completed my first ever pair of Fair Isle socks.

I can't believe I have put off knitting colourwork socks for so long, because I enjoyed knitting these so much.  I'm now busy browsing all the colour work sock patterns on Ravelry and I can't wait to start another pair.

I've also completed this cute Bumblebee Hat.

I was inspired by one of the other knitters from the Ravelry group to make this pattern.  She had had issues with the size of the hat, so I reconfigured it to match my favourite hat recipe, keeping the charts from the original pattern.

It was such a joy to knit and I couldn't put it down once I started.

So a very productive six weeks in terms of stash-busting.  For the four projects I finished for the KAL, I used 532g and 35 different colours in total, all in 4 ply weight.  Very satisfying.

And if that isn't enough, I knitted up a shawl with the Cuddlebums yarn I bought at Yarndale in September this year.

I love the little pops of colour in the pink background.  I used a favourite knitting pattern (it's free on Ravelry) called Age of Brass and Steam.  It's simple but very effective.

Lastly, I've been at the sewing machine again.  This time I made a simple skirt.

I used the skirt sections of my favourite Simplicity 2444 dress pattern and added a waistband.  I'm very happy with the fit and will be making more skirts like this in the future.  I would have liked to have shown you a picture of me wearing the skirt but to be honest, I don't trust my husband's photography skills!

I've recently bought two lots of new dress fabric and one lot of skirt fabric, however, I'm in the middle of decorating one of the bedrooms so crafty projects may have to take a backseat until the decorating is out of the way.  So until next time, I'm off to my pasting table to get suitable sticky.  Enjoy your week.

Friday, 4 November 2016

Enjoying the Colours

There have been some beautiful colours to admire this Autumn.  The trees have been just amazing.  It's a delight to go for my morning walk and marvel at the gorgeous yellows, reds and oranges.

I've been knitting up some colourful goodness of my own.  My Fair Isle cardigan is now complete.

It's knitted entirely from leftovers of gorgeous Shetland 4ply wool, a mix of Jamieson & Smith and Jamieson's Spindrift.

In total I used 19 different colours and 369g of yarn.  It's a true stashbuster.

I'm really pleased with how it looks and the colour combination is just perfect.

I'm loving knitting Fair Isle (I always do).   It gives me so much pleasure to see the colour patterns evolving.  The only thing I have never knitted in Fair Isle is socks.  For some reason I've shied away from these.  I think I'm worried about the fit.  Socks need to fit well and if the tension is wrong on the Fair Isle, then it could be a disaster.  But I feel that the time is right for me it give it a try, so my next Fair Isle project will definitely be socks.  Just got to steel myself to cast on and get on with it.

Last week was my husband's birthday.  I thought I'd share a picture with you of the cake I made him (I pinched the idea from Pinterest).

He liked the surprise and the cake was delicious. (For anyone concerned, Barbie's legs fitted back on no problem afterwards!)

Have a good weekend.