Dress Dash

When I got my first “real” job, I was really looking forward to Christmas, I was finally going to have money to buy decent presents for my friends and family, a co-worker and I took an afternoon off work and walked up and down High Street Kensington, looking for gifts, as we brought all our gifts in an afternoon, we decided we needed a treat and brought a present for ourselves. Ever since then it has become a little tradition that when I am out Christmas shopping I buy a present for me. Normally, this is an outfit to wear on New Year’s Eve, but this year I opted for something to wear on Boxing Day whilst visiting family.

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In the panic of not having enough yarn to finish my Hourglass Sweater, I ordered two extra balls of Classic Al, however, they are a different dye lot and the colour difference is really noticeable, so they were destined to sit in my stash, apart for that fact that they perfectly match my new outift! As it is freezing outside I know I would need some new gloves to wear, as I cast on some Dashing Mitts. I am adapting the pattern a lot to make them shorter more like Fetching.

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Hourglass Sweater

hourglass

Yarn: Elsebeth Lavold Classic AL in North Sea (Darker Blue) & Rooster Almerino DK in Sugared Almond.
Pattern: Hourglass Sweater from Last Minute Knitted Gifts .
Needles: 4.5 mm.
Notes: Well, I did finish this sweater in a month – even I am shocked. I loved this pattern, simple stocking stitch on the round on large-ish needles. I think my love of this sweater was doubled with the combination of my Addi Turbos and the lovely soft baby alpaca/merino yarn.
Modifications: I made the Medium (41) sized sweater for the body, but found the arms to be too wide, so I cast on the next side down for the sleeves, I also found the length of the arms to be way too long (about two inches). As mention on several blogs/boards, I had to add several more rows of decreasing, I am not sure how many I ended up doing, I just kept knitting and randomly trying it on until it fit.

My creation
1. Hourglass – Hem, 2. Hourglass – Side, 3. Hourglass – Raglan

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Baudelaire

Baudelaire

BaudelaireYarn: Knit Picks Palette in Brindle Heather.
Pattern: Baudelaire from Knitty.
Needles: 2.5mm
Notes:I actually finished these socks a while ago, but never blogged about them, and as I was wearing them today (with my Belle Shoes), I thought I should write about them. This was my first attempt at toe-up socks, I had a little problem with the cuff being too tight – but I changed to a thicker needle for the rib and it was fine.

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What did we do before Ravelry?

HourglassAs well as being a showcase for all my present and past projects, it has helped me organised my stash and needles. But my favourite section has to be the “queue.” Of course I always have a list of planned projects – used receipts in knitting books, post it notes in magazines saved web pages and the odd scribbled note in the bottom of my knitting bag.

At the top of this list was always the Hourglass Sweater from LMKG, I got as far as buying the yarn for the project in the summer some Elsebeth Lavold Classic AL from Coldspring Mill. Before, I cast on the project I was checking out Ravelry (as you do), and discovered that you actually need more yarn than the project suggests, knowing I couldn’t get the same dye lot for this yarn, I decided to get another colour and add a few stripes to the sweater.

I then discovered it was almost impossible to get Elsebeth Lavold yarn in the U.K. so I asked the London Knitting Group for advice, I found out the Rooster Almerino Aran is a very similar yarn (50% Baby Alpaca wool and 50% Merino Wool), and comes in some amazing colours.

I managed to get the yarn in at Ally Pally, and now whilst ill in bed this week, I finally got around to casting this project on. For the hem, I used the provisional crochet chain cast on, and folded hem, similar to what you would use for a Picot Hem, done with the Almerino Aran and then changed to the Classic Al for the main body.

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Pomatomus

Pomatomus

Yarn: Natural Dyed Studio Alpaca/Silk – DK in Midnight Ice.
Pattern: Pomatomus.
Needles: 2.75mm.
Notes: These were the first socks I experienced SSS with – at first I thought it was the pattern – but once I cast on the second sock, it seemed to knit up very quickly!

I loved this yarn – the colours are beautiful and it knitted up fabulously – I have even seen they have some more on eBay (I can’t buy more can I?)

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Lace Scarf

Lace Scarf ECU

Lace ScarfYarn: Knit Witches Silk Laceweight in Storm Grey.
Pattern: Lace Scarf from Debbie Bliss Pure Silk Collection (Link to Ravelry).
Needles: 3.25mm
Notes: There is not much to say about this pattern, it is a really simple lace repeat, but the silk yarn makes it really dramatic. I used the laceweight yarn rather than the DK the pattern suggests, this and the smaller needles to made a skinnier scarf, I just kept knitting until the scarf was about 80 inches.

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Gretel

Gretel

GretelYarn: Knit Picks Andean Silk in Navy.
Pattern: Gretel Beret from Ysolda.
Needles: 3.75 mm & 4.5mm.
Notes: I started out knitting this pattern really quickly, I knitted the regular version so it didn’t take long at all, I couldn’t get the decreasing right, so I kept ripping it back, and eventually gave up, whilst I was in South Africa Ysolda released a newer version of the pattern and then it was completed pretty quickly.

At first I was concerned about knitting cables on circular/double pointed needles but I found it was pretty easy – this is one of those looks harder that it is patterns – to be honest I think it could be knitted up in a day.

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Ravelry Envy

We have all heard of Facebook Envy, I am thinking I have Ravelry Envy, I subscribed to my friends activities, now whenever I see a project I like I have to queue it, or else I am coveting a new yarn. The problem is, I am picking patterns that I don’t have the yarn for when I should be trying to get rid of the yarn I have.

Baudelaire - CuffLast night, was meant to be the first of the Chiswick Ravelry Meet-Ups but it ended up falling to bits. So I spent the night finishing off some projects, I am actually really pleased with myself – I cast off two projects last night, the birthday scarf is blocking on the ironing board and my Baudelaire are on a wire-hanger-blocker.

I made a promise to myself this morning that I am going to have this many projects on the go at once, has made me so unorganized, I have forgotten the repeats of lace and ended up having to frog the sock more than once, I also don’t really have the place to store this many projects (my flower basket shawl is currently in a tesco’s carrier bag).

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Silk Scarf and SSS

Silk Scarf Over the weekend, I sat down and re-thought my idea for Janice’s scarf, I decided to knit her the Lace Scarf from Debbie Bliss Pure Silk in some of the KnitWitches Silk I brought at KSS. My plan was for a washable, warm scarf, that could be worn everyday… so of course, I am knitting a skinny thin silk scarf – the complete opposite of my own spec. The lace pattern is really simple, so there is no problem of me meeting my deadline of next week, even though I am working on 3mm needles.

Actually, I am getting a little concerned about my knitting projects. Jason has even mentioned that I had far too many things on the needles (I spot 7 progess bars on my sidebar), the hoodie and gretel beret are nearly finished, I just need to weave in the ends or block them. But I am worried about my pomatomus sock, the first one was finished in August, in fact I remember knitting this whilst sitting outside I Knit one glorious summer evening – and I haven’t even thought about casting on it’s twin… is this my first real case of SSS.

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Le Slouch

Le Slouch

Le SlouchYarn: Berroco Jasper in Blue Bahia.
Pattern: Le Slouch (pdf file).
Needles: 4.5mm.
Notes: I opted to knit this beret as stocking stitch rather than the seed stitch as the yarn was so stunning, I didn’t think it needed the pattern.

As the pattern says this hat is the perfect quick fix project to update your wardrobe, seeing all the berets in the stores at the moment, I knew I had to knit one. But the best thing about this hat it is great for wearing on bad hair days.

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