Hello and thanks for visiting my blog. I have been knitting on and off for 50 years and I recently learned to crochet. I love looking for wool bargains and making them into something useful. I mainly knit for charity. I occasionally knit for myself and family members if I find a really good pattern or if they ask nicely!!

Sunday 27 March 2016

Decisions, decisions...

Do not adjust your brightness control.  This pink really is this shocking.  In fact, it is probably even brighter than it looks here.  I bought it very cheaply at a local boot fair. It weighs just under 300g and seems to be a 4 ply acrylic.  

I like rescuing unloved yarn.  It's only later that I think about what to do with it.  I rarely knit with 4 ply yarn and, when I do, it is usually something delicate for a baby. This is too bright for that.  So, I could combine it with another yarn for a speckled effect.  Or I could knit with two strands to make it roughly equal to a double knit yarn.

I have no works in progress at the moment.  I think I will use this pink shocker next. This afternoon, I watched a version of "Jane Eyre" that I hadn't seen before.  Probably because there are already so many versions of this story, the director spiced it up a little by using flashbacks which don't appear in the original novel.  My eyes were, therefore, fully occupied.  But my hands whiled away a couple of hours by rolling this yarn into smaller balls.  

Now I am ready, just as soon as I decide what to do with it.  Any suggestions would be very welcome!

Tuesday 22 March 2016

Free Jumper finished...

Here is the jumper I have been working on.  I found the pattern in Yours magazine.  It was described as "for knitters with some experience".  I'd say that was a fair description.  The tricky parts were the neckline and shoulders.  I am well used to knitting v-necks and shoulders.  But the magazine didn't really help matters when it published the photo back to front.  It showed the buttons on the right shoulder and I had to read the pattern several times to make sure I was following it correctly.

I'm calling this a free jumper as the wool came to me as a donation from a Freecycler and the buttons were sent to me by Joanne of the Cup On The Bus blog.  The photo doesn't show them clearly but they are lovely wooden buttons and go well with the real wool.

I knitted the size that should fit a seven year old child.  That has left me with about 100g of the wool which should be enough to make a matching hat or scarf.  Then I will be sending them off to Operation Orphan.

I now have absolutely no works in progress.  I can't remember the last time that happened.  Decisions, decisions.

Sunday 6 March 2016

The Clew Bay blanket...

I started this blanket months ago and then had to put it away to protect it from the clouds of dust that filled the house while we were renovating the ground floor.  Well, the renovations are over and I have almost finished dusting, polishing and painting. So I felt it was safe to take out this blanket and finish it.  It is basically just one very large granny square.  It has now gone off to SIBOL from where the busy Sue will add it to others and deliver it to a home for elderly residents.

Sue likes to name the blankets.  The only name that sprang to mind when I was making this was "Clew Bay".  Anyone who knows the west coast of Ireland will know where I mean.  The bay is best viewed from high up the Croagh Patrick mountain in Mayo. Here is a typical view of the bay.

It shows a few of over 100 sunken drumlins or small islands.  I have happy memories of climbing that mountain when I was 11 and being amazed by the view.  Little did I know then that I would end up marrying a man whose ancestors had close connections to this part of Ireland.

I used a variegated blue and green yarn that I bought in Poundstretcher.  I find their wool to be a very reasonable price and a more than acceptable quality.  It is a strong acrylic which is perfect for items that will need a lot of washing.  I added to that various balls of blue and green yarn that I needed to use up.  

I like some parts of the blanket more than other parts.  But that's life. I learned a good lesson near the end of the blanket.  I could see that I would not have enough green to complete a round so I turned the blanket and went backwards.  This produced two corners that needed a lot of concentration to sort out.  I just about got away with it, but I won't be repeating that mistake again!

I used my favourite easy Double V-stitch edging that can be found on the Knot Your Nana's Crochet blog.  It is pretty and does not use a ton of yarn.

I am already planning my next blanket.  I can see it in my imagination, though it will be a long time before it stars in this blog. There is a lot of water to go under the bridge before then!

Wednesday 2 March 2016

A Wednesday WIP...

I don't usually write WIP posts, but I haven't finished anything lately due to decorating commitments.  This is what I am working on at the moment.  A couple of years ago I was lucky enough to receive lots of wool from a Freecycler.  I have used most of it.  But there was a bag of wool that left me stumped.  It contained lots of 25g balls of Doubleknit Wearwell by Hermit Wools in West Yorkshire.  This is a new brand to me.  It is 85% wool and 15% nylon.  I think it is really old as the labels don't show a barcode, though the measurement is in grams rather than ounces.

Then I had one of my very rare brainwaves.  I decided the wool and nylon mix would make a very warm and strong jumper for a child.  I found a pattern that I had torn out of a Yours magazine some time ago.  It is called Little Boy Blue and might still be available on their website, though I have just had a quick look and couldn't find it.  I have already knitted the back of the jumper and can recommend it as a lovely, quick and easy pattern.  

This pattern comes in sizes ranging from newborn to 7 years old.  I am knitting the biggest size and it will go off to Operation Orphan eventually.  The wool just happens to be a cherry shade  I think that is fairly gender neutral, so it should have a lot of use.  The downside of 25g balls is that there will be lots of ends to sew in.  But that is a small problem in the great scheme of things.

I think there will be enough wool left over for a couple of hats.  So I am going to plough on until I have used it all up.