Wednesday, 9 March 2016

FO - baby cardigans and a rainbow blanket

There's another batch of finished objects hanging around this week.  After that time when I had a bunch of things on the needles at once, it was quite a surprise to find I had nothing to make the other night!  So I cast on another hat.  Not a surprise.  I'm back on a schedule though, with a couple of things I need to do in the next few weeks, so the hats can go on the back burner again.

The first two items were gifts for a colleague, who's due another baby soon.  I knit a blanket for their firstborn, so of course the new baby needed one too.  Then I decided First Baby should have something cute, and now she has a new cardigan.  Perfect for summer!

baby toddler girl cardigan diamond yoke phildar deramores knitted

baby toddler girl cardigan diamond yoke phildar deramores knitted

Pattern - Cardigan by Phildar (free from Deramores)

Yarn - Red Heart Margareta 4ply (light blue, pink and vanilla) for the diamond pattern, random lilac 4ply for main (78g lilac, 20g of others)

Size - 18 months

Additions - 3 x cream buttons

Notes - I love how this cardigan turned out, it's just the cutest thing.  That being said, the pattern was so needlessly complicated that there's a good chance I'll never go near it again.  I still haven't figured out the method it used for making the collar and button bands, so I just did my own version.  Something about knitting in rib, then stocking stitch, then ironing something, then unravelling a bit...  Nope.  I knit the body in one piece then divided for the armholes, knit the sleeves, then put them all together and started the yoke pattern, which was simple enough.  It definitely looked better after a soak in the bath and a day on the radiator though!

rainbow coloured baby blanket knitted

Pattern - Baby blanket by Haraseiram (on Ravelry)

Yarn - selection of DK yarn from stash in seven colours (194g total - approx 28g of each shade)

Notes - I forgot to measure the finished size.  Smart.  It's....blanket sized.  Let's go with that.  I started and ended with six rows of moss stitch and followed the very simple design otherwise.  This is my second blanket using this pattern and I already want to make a third.  The rainbow colours are perfect together - I already knew I was knitting for a boy but I wanted a good mix of colours in there anyway.  Mother had to send me a back-up ball of the bright blue yarn when I thought I was going to run out but the blanket used up surprisingly little of each colour, the perfect project for all those oddments.

baby cardigan knitted aran yarn wool silver pattern free rowan

baby cardigan knitted aran yarn wool silver pattern free rowan

Pattern - Silver by Susan Mills/Rowan

Yarn - charity shopped and label free Aran yarn (106g total)

Size - 3 months

Additions - 3 x natural buttons

Notes - Another repeat make.  I do like a pattern that allows for some mild customisation!  I love playing about with colours and this cardigan is perfect for that.  The cream yarn was part of a big lot I found in a charity shop a few months ago (nine balls for £4.50!) and the pink and green were lying in a bucket of boring yarn in my local Oxfam before Christmas.  Since I had no real reason for knitting this cardi, I went for the smallest size and knit it up super quickly, and now it's hanging out in the gift drawer, waiting for another person in my life to procreate.  Always good to have a few gifts ready, I find. (In an ideal world, I'd always be this organised.  In reality, it's last minute crafts all the way.)


Since it's Yarn Along day, and because I finally found something awesome to read, I have to share details of my latest library book.  I'm reading Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor, as recommended by Janet.  I'm not sure what I appreciate more - the clever fantasy elements or the fact that it's been so long since I've taken to a book as quickly as this one, but either way, I'm definitely planning a few early nights this week to get more reading time in.

What's everyone making this week?

:)

Wednesday, 2 March 2016

Yarn Along

dublin bay socks knitting pattern pink sock yarn 4 ply dpn needles

Knitting people, I need your help/opinions.  I suspect my Dublin Bay socks are too big.  I suspect if I keep going, they'll keep being too big and I'll end up having wasted loads of time (cause socks are made slowly over here).  My instinct tends to be right about this kind of thing, although I have been known to ignore it, and I don't feel like wasting loads of time.  As you can see from the picture, I'm using one of my shop-bought socks as a guide and it's a good bit narrower. So, should I go down a needle size to 2mm?  Lose some stitches from the circumference?  Reassure myself that they're supposed to be that size?

I checked the comments section on Ravelry and a few other people seem to have had the same problem, which makes me think it might just be better to start over.  Luckily, I have other projects to keep me busy for now...

silver baby cardigan rowan knitting pattern aran yarn wool

I'm still working on the Silver cardigan.  It's grown a bit since I took the picture yesterday - I now have the body done and have started the first sleeve.  At the moment, it's just going in the gift drawer, but I have an old friend who's due her baby soon, so maybe I'll give it to her.  I love this pattern for mixing up colours and using up odd bits of yarn, and the Aran weight makes it a quick knit.

I finished a couple of other baby gifts that are waiting to be washed and blocked, a task I'm planning to get on with tonight, so they could be the feature of next week's Yarn Along!

beekeeper quilt knitting hexies DK yarn colourful

When I was tidying up the other night, I came across my bag of knitted hexies from the Beekeeper's Quilt pattern.  I was getting on quite well with this and then suddenly lost all motivation for it, resulting in the pile being stuffed behind my desk and forgotten about.  I've decided to sew all my hexies together to see what size the quilt is at, then I'll decide what to do with it.  I was making them with DK yarn so I know they're a bit bigger than the pattern ones, but I've only done around 100 so I don't think it'll be blanket-sized quite yet...

the year of living danishly denmark book paperback library helen russell floral cushion vintage

On the book front, I finished The Year of Living Danishly on Monday.  It was good.  Entertaining.  Informative.  However, I can't help feeling like it was far too generalised to get an entirely accurate view of the Danish culture.  Does everyone really all furnish their homes in the same style?  Celebrate holidays the same way?  Feel that happy all the time?  I'm sceptical, but it was an interesting read all the same.  Now I'm planning to finish the last Call the Midwife book before moving onto my latest library order, and then tackling my own stack of books.  March will definitely be a month of reading!

Linking up to Ginny's Yarn Along.

What's everyone making and reading this week?

:)

Tuesday, 1 March 2016

The Buyer's Archive - February

Two years ago, I started tracking my spending on everything that went into my wardrobe to see exactly how much of my outgoings went on non-essential items.  It's been an interesting experiment and one I plan to continue indefinitely.  Check out my journey here.

Similar to last month, I've not really been buying much lately.  Sorting through all my possessions has made me reluctant to add anything to the stack and knowing I won't have a job soon has made me hoard all my pennies.  Well, I'm still making a reasonable contribution to the restaurant industry in Scotland. but food doesn't count, right?

vintage dress floral buyers archive charity shop

Vintage dress via charity shop - £3
Last February I bought one thing and this February I bought one thing.  Maybe I was in the same mindset last year!  I wasn't keen on the style of this dress but I liked the fabric and thought I could alter it to fit my taste better but alas, it wasn't to be.  I did have a good go at making it work (the shortened sleeves were a definite improvement) but I just couldn't get the skirt to sit right.  It went into the donate bag shortly afterwards.

A grand total of £3 was spent in February 2015 and somehow, I've beaten that this year.

vintage navy nautical t-shirt sailor style gold 90s charity shop

Vintage nautical t-shirt via charity shop - £1
I didn't need another t-shirt.  I didn't need another anything wardrobe related, in fact, but I saw this and immediately started picturing it in my summer wardrobe (I do that a lot apparently.)  Plus, it's navy, so it automatically goes with half my clothes.  This was also the best of the photographs I tried to take of it.  As well as Stupid Face Syndrome, I also had a problem with creasing and tucked up sleeves.  Sigh...  I think I'll use unemployment as a chance to take millions of pictures.  Or learn Photoshop properly.

Spending just £1 in February might be my best total yet (besides zero, of course) and I didn't even go nuts on craft supplies, where the other portion of my non-essentials budget is usually spent.  Winner!

How did everyone else get on?  I'm going to start using a hashtag on social media (#buyersarchive) so I can find everyone who's joining in, so either use that or tag me in your post and I'll give you a retweet/shout out!  It was great to see so many people joining in with the series in January.  Keep up the good work everyone!

:)
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