Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Olive & Emma = excitement

I discovered Olive & Emma a couple of months ago. Emma, the person behind the brand, is an indy dyer in Tauranga, New Zealand, who posts pictures of her hand dyed yarns on her Facebook page and sells them to the first commenter to say "sold". 

Since she started in April, she's found 750 dedicated Facebook followers and made it onto the Popular New Yarns list on Ravelry. I was always too slow to get the first comment in for her beautiful yarns, but luckily for me Emma also does custom dyes!

I'm getting two skeins of this beautiful grey and yellow silk blend sock yarn - my two current favourite colors! Thanks so much Emma, I can't wait for it to arrive!
If you're after some beautiful hand dyes, check out Olive & Emma on Facebook!

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Collar obsession

Detachable collars are so cool. I love them all, the Peter Pan styles, the business shirt styles and the frilly lacy ones.

I've found some great tutorials online that I might try out - like this one from Rookie and Etsy has an AMAZING selection. But as easy as it would be for me to buy pretty much all of them, I've decided that I'd like to make one myself - yet I really had trouble finding a simple knitting pattern. I've had a go at making one up myself.
 Here is the beginning of my prototype knitted collar, using Skeinz Prism DK in Toy Red.

I'm giving moss stitch a go - I figure I'm about half way through so I should finish it tonight and have a good idea of where I need to make adjustments. Another bonus, it would be a great project for scrap yarn!
I'm doing increases at each end to make a nice pointed collar - hope it works!

My first tutorial in *bespoke*

I am extremely excited to have my first tutorial published in Issue 7 of *bespoke*! I've written a tutorial to make a nautical-style bracelet. This little magazine is such a great read - I've been spending my weekend browsing through in in-between watching Olympic events!

I encourage all of you to grab a copy - either print or a digital edition. Thanks so much to editor Jess for giving me the opportunity to write for *bespoke*.

Monday, July 23, 2012

And how could I forget? Entangled Magazine issue six is out now!

It's pretty much awesome - make sure you get a copy! 
I interviewed the amazing Lyn Toogood for this issue - she knits food!

Wedding fund = stash money?

I'll admit it. I just dipped into the wedding fund to by Cascade Eco wool. I'm not using it for any wedding related project, but the yarn is almost an ivory colour, so it will match my dress...

I got four hanks from South Seas Knitting to make my Evoke Yarns Boyfriend Sweater. The pattern and the original yarn has disappeared from their website, so I'm improvising with the Eco - luckily I downloaded the free pattern before it vanished!

This was a wedding related purchase though! It's my first ever Polaroid camera, and I'm planning on running around with it at the reception - much cheaper than hiring a photo booth for the event - now I'm just waiting on the film to arrive from The Impossible Project.

The shawl hasn't been smooth sailing. I dropped a pile of stitches the other day, and had to rip it out entirely (how do you fix lace when you make a mistake? The yarn-overs really don't help..) and start again. Twice. But we will get there! More lifelines are needed!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Don't knit lace on needles that are the same colour as your yarn

It makes things difficult. I've started the wedding shawl, a Skywalker Shawl by Laura Nelkin. All is going well, except that my red acrylic Knit Pros, the only size 3.5mm needles I have, are exactly the same color as my Dye For Wool yarn.... Another reason for me to go and by the Addi Lace Clicks set? I'm getting pretty convinced.

I haven't had any major dramas so far except for finding it hard to see what I'm doing. 
The Craftsy class is awesome. All of the stitches are talked through as you go, so I'm following along and I haven't made a mistake.
I've only knitted about an inch though, and there's about a million stitches to go. And four months, 16 days!

I've also decided that I'd like to knit my bridesmaids some gifts. I have two on the go, the Frilly Frilly and the Cloud Snood, that will be good to gift, and they are over half-way completed. I just need to think of one more quick knit - suggestions appreciated!

Monday, July 2, 2012

I've figured out the lace mistake

So I was following the pattern word for word - but I got my abbreviations wrong.
SK2P does not mean slip one, knit two, pass slipped stitch over.
It means slip one, knit two TOGETHER, pass slipped stitch over. 
I obviously knew this for the previous knitting I did on this scarf - shows what happen's when you hibernate projects for months at a time!

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Why doesn't my lace knitting ever work?

I started my Frilly Frilly over a year ago. I keep putting it aside to do other things, which is all well and good, but I've decided that if I'm going to knit an entire shawl for my wedding, I better at least finish this easy (not by my standards, by lace standards!) scarf. 
 At the beginning of each pattern repeat, you purl the first row and have 31 stitches.
For the second row, the start of the lacy stuff, I follow the pattern exactly and I complete the row without any mistakes - the repeat across the row fits in perfectly with the amount of stitches I have.
Then I purl row number three.
But row number four, oh my goodness, it's killing me.
Every time the row repeats don't fit - I have four or five random stitches sitting at the end. I've ripped it back to the lifeline six times now. I follow the pattern to the word, but every time, it doesn't work out!
And the most frustrating part is, I've done it before - there's nearly 20 inches of scarf finished already!
This is giving me no hope for my wedding shawl, which needs to be completed in exactly five months.
If I cannot figure this out, the shawl is not happening.

And this is such a shame, because look how amazing the yarn is!

I'll just make myself feel better by eating all of these.

And admiring my new plates for the wedding reception.

The collection is growing! Should definitely have 100 by December.

100 Beanie Drive!

Jess at *bespoke* magazine is organizing a beanie drive for the Day Oncology Unit at the Royal Brisbane Hospital.
It's a fantastic way to contribute something small that will really make a difference for people with cancer - one of the side effects of some medications is a difficulty to control temperature, and it's winter, so patients are feeling the cold a bit more than the rest of us.

I knitted my first beanie a few years ago, and it has never quite found the right person to keep warm. It's just been sitting in a drawer, and apart from me trying it on when I first finished knitting it, it hasn't been worn since.

 It's a snuggly chunky alpaca, and in a great blue colour. I'm going to post it to Jess this week in the hope that it finds the right person to keep warm.
Spread the word, lets try and get over 100 beanies!