Knit Nat

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In the garden...

It feels like years since I updated this blog – way back in February. My last post showed snow! I’m afraid I have what is the usual set of excuses. Back when I did my last post, I think I was just getting into a huge project at work. We overhauled the company’s website design and back end system, and being the senior web designer, I was in charge of the branding, design and testing when it was launched. Since the site launched, things have settled down on the work front, so I’m not getting back home exhausted and not wanting to do anything.

At the same time as being busy at work, it’s also been busy personally. Alvin and me bought a flat in August! We knew it was the place for us when we set foot inside for the first time. It’s in North London (we were previously living with my parents outside of London), which means getting to work by walking and taking the Tube, no more having to leave places early to make the long trek back home, being able to meet up with people and stay out spontaneously… It’s all great!

At the Woseley having afternoon tea!

We have a spare bedroom, which will be great for people staying round, a nice big living room with a dining area to entertain and a little patio where I intend to start a mini veg and herb garden! I’m hoping that moving into our own place will help get me back into my favourite hobbies, like baking without worrying about messing up my mum’s kitchen etc.

I did manage to knit the baby booties I mentioned a while back for Alvin’s cousin’s wife. I made the booties using the KnitPicks Summer Vacation yarn I bought as the baby’s sex was going to be a surprise. I finished them in time for the baby shower and she loved them, I was so happy! She had a little girl in the end, so I can see myself planning more baby girl stuff to knit!

Baby Booties finished!

I also started on a red Beret from Stitch ‘n’ Bitch Superstar Knitting. I’m not sure whether I like it enough to wear myself or if I’ll give it away, but it’s a really fun knit. I love knitting cables! I  joined the Yarn to Knit yarn club for 3 months and received some gorgeous soft and squishy yarn. I’ll be making lots of socks with them!

Received 1st Yarn to Knit Sock Club - gorgeous and soft!
And that’s it for Yarn related things!

Big events happened this year as well. We went to the Olympics! Alvin managed to get tickets for the Women’s Hockey. It was an amazing day out, didn’t rain the whole day and was so pleased to have been at a once in a life time event. Everyone there was in a great mood, the sport was so fun to watch and I would go again if I got the chance!

Match 2 - NZL vs RSA

A sad event happened this year. Our dog Rupert had to be put down. He was old and not too well, although perfectly happy and not in pain until that point. His liver and kidneys failed and so we knew the time had come. He was the most amazing dog. I’m glad he’s not in any discomfort now and resting in peace in his favourite woods.

Rupert relaxing

It is now my favourite time of year: Autumn, and with Autumn comes the need to wear things a little warmer. I’m hoping to make a big dent in my stash this year and churn out projects for the colder months. Maybe not go quite so crazy with the knitted Christmas gift ideas like last year! But I definitely want to make a few things for family and friends. We’ll see 🙂

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Quick sock update: I envy those who seem to be able to churn out socks like there’s no tomorrow. I am still knitting away at the basic sock and I’m only halfway through, about to do the heel. I know that it’s my first proper sock, it’s man-sized (so fairly big) and knit using tiny yarn and tiny needles, but it would just be nice not to spend 2 months per sock, which seems to be the time it’s taking so far. And I think I’m spending an OK amount of time on them amongst the busyness that is life – I get a few evenings a week, and any time during the weekend knitting it. Maybe I need to ramp it up a bit more. I don’t know! But I am enjoying it none the less, even if it is taking a while…

It snowed!

It snowed over the weekend!

Onto the acquisitions. I purchased some yarn from Knit Picks with these baby booties in mind. Again, I seem to be going back to knitting things for other people (the sock earlier isn’t for me, which you probably got from the fact that the socks are ‘man-sized’) and when I found out that one of Alvin’s cousins is pregnant, I just have to cast on a pair of the cute little booties! There are so many colour combinations from different people’s versions, so I had to follow suit and get some variegated yarn to make them. I don’t know if she wants to know the sex of the baby or if it’ll be a surprise, so I covered all bases (of course I did, it meant I could buy more gorgeous yarn!):

Knit Picks Imagination in 'Damsel'

Knit Picks Imagination in 'Damsel'

If it’s a girl, I’ll use Knit Picks hand painted Imagination yarn in ‘Damsel’.

Knit Picks Stroll Hand Painted in 'Lullaby'

Knit Picks Stroll Hand Painted in 'Lullaby'

If it’s a boy, Knit Picks Hand Painted Stroll yarn in ‘Lullaby’.

Knit Picks Stroll Hand Painted in 'Summer Vacation'

Knit Picks Stroll Hand Painted in 'Summer Vacation'

And for either, Knit Picks Hand Painted Stroll yarn in ‘Summer Vacation’.

They are such lovely, squishy, soft, colourful yarns, I can’t wait to knit with them! I’m thinking of starting the multi-coloured ‘either girl or boy’ booties first, so that whatever happens, there are some finished booties waiting. And then I’ll get on with the blue and pink ones. There are quite a few cousins who are settling down, so I can see myself knitting a whole line of multi-coloured booties 🙂

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Apart from the Toddler Mittens that I managed to finish in time for my Niece’s Birthday, the only knitted gift I managed to finish was my Mum’s scarf (it was finished Christmas Eve!). I started my Grandma’s scarf at some point though, but changed the pattern from a mistake rib to something else, but can’t remember what it’s called… Anyway, that’s still a work in progress.

My Mum's Scarf

My Mum's Scarf

Following on from my resolutions in my last post, I’ve started a basic sock as my first ‘12 Socks in 2012‘ project. For Christmas, I got ‘Socks from the Toe Up’ as I wanted a good book to tell me exactly what to do and where when knitting socks (as well as a book full of patterns that I want to knit, not just half of them). And I have to say, even as a beginner knitter, the book is clear and easy to follow. Of course, there were things that I needed to clarify by watching YouTube videos and looked up a few things, but I’m really please with how my sock is going!

Socks from the Toe Up

Socks from the Toe Up

It’s quite slow going with the sock. I’ve never knit with anything thinner than DK weight yarn and nothing smaller than size 4mm needles, and it’s also my first ever sock, so it’s to be expected that it’ll take a while to finish. Just a couple more inches and then I knit my first heel ever. I’m definitely going to cast on the second sock straight away to avoid second sock syndrome!

The sock is coming along nicely

The sock is coming along nicely

I know that one of my resolutions was to knit more for me. Well… these socks are for my boyfriend, Alvin… But I will definitely be knitting some socks for myself soon I think, carrying on the 12 socks in 2012 🙂

In other knitterly news, I purchased my first sock club subscription from Yarn to Knit. I don’t have the budget to spend £200 on a yearly knitting club, but this one seemed perfect. It’s 3 months at a time, £35 including p&p (so £35 for 3 months) and it’s lovely hand dyed wool. I love surprises, especially of the sock yarn kind 😉

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I have a finished object!!! I finished the Toddler Mittens a week before my niece’s Birthday, which I was really pleased about.

Toddler Mittens

Toddler Mittens

Took 3 attempts to get them right; with the first one I managed to completely miss out alternating plain knit rows when I was increasing the body of the mitten! The next two were better as I got used to the pattern.

Toddler Mittens

Toddler Mittens

They came out a little bigger than toddler size, but that’s most likely due to me forgetting to knit a gauge swatch, as usual…

Speaking of knitted gifts, an update (more for me) on my knitted gifts list:

  1. Wash Cloths: friend (surprise gift) –  DONE!
  2. Toddler Mittens: my Niece – DONE! Didn’t do a scarf in the end
  3. Beer Gloves: Alvin [ASAP]
  4. Mistake Rib Scarf: my Mum [Christmas present] – WIP
  5. Mistake Rib Scarf: my Grandma [Christmas present]

Gifts that are being postponed for after Christmas (no surprises for most of them!):

  1. Mistake Rib Scarf: my Sister [Christmas present] I’m doing socks instead now!
  2. Palm Readers: Me! [Whenever I have time]
  3. Star Crossed Slouchy Beret (using the same yarn to go with the Palm Readers): Me [Whenever I have time]
  4. Gretel hat: Me [Whenever I have time]
  5. Mr. Pitt’s Socks: my Dad [Christmas or Birthday present – 6th February]
  6. Tea Time Blanket: my Niece [Biggest project and of course I was convinced it’d be done by Christmas! I think it’ll post Christmas now]

So, it’s slow progress. I’m really hoping I’ll get the two scarves done in time for Christmas. Fingers crossed!

 

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I’ve been fairly consistent with my knitting lately. I’m knitting nearly every day, and although it’s slow going, I’m managing to make a small dent in my list of knitted gifts for my family and friends. I think some items might end up being birthday presents as there are quite a few birthdays coming up before and after Christmas. It all depends on how quickly/slowly I get my gifts knitted!

Anyway, onto the list…

  1. Wash Cloths: friend (surprise gift) –  these are actually finished now, they just need to be blocked
  2. Toddler Mittens & scarf: my Niece [Birthday present – 24th November]
  3. Beer Gloves: Alvin [ASAP]
  4. Mistake Rib Scarf: my Mum [Christmas present]
  5. Mistake Rib Scarf: my Grandma [Christmas present]
  6. Mistake Rib Scarf: my Sister [Christmas present]
  7. Palm Readers: Me! [Whenever I have time]
  8. Star Crossed Slouchy Beret (using the same yarn to go with the Palm Readers): Me [Whenever I have time]
  9. Gretel hat: Me [Whenever I have time]
  10. Mr. Pitt’s Socks: my Dad [Christmas or Birthday present – 6th February]
  11. Tea Time Blanket: my Niece [Biggest project and of course I was convinced it’d be done by Christmas! I think it’ll post Christmas now]

Can I get all this done in time for Christmas? I’m currently full of delusion thinking yeah, that’s completely doable… I’m sure I’ll be panicking nearer the time!

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