Always the Last to Know

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I wasn’t planning on talking about Del Amitri when I sat down to write this blog post, but when I typed the title, I started singing and had to pause to go and pop their album on.  It’s probably not cool and definitely not relevant to the rest of this post, but I LOVE DEL AMITRI, always have and I make no apologies for it.

Anyway, I’ll sing while I type if that’s ok?

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It’s That Cowl Again

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I’m drawing your attention to the photograph of the cowl I’d completed but gifted before taking a snap of the finished item from the last post.

Some of you will have no doubt seen me knitting it and a good few of you were surprised to hear it wasn’t for me as they’re definitely my colours, so much so that I was a little tempted to keep it 😉  Dina and I purchased the yarn from The Knitting Goddess stall at Yarndale last year after spotting their pretty sample garment, which was in very different shades and of which they’d sold out 😦 Undeterred we opted for something different, me thinks years of living in my technicoloured world might finally be having an affect (step away from the black and grey clothes).

The pattern is called the Mirrored Linen Stitch Cowl by Joy McMillan, who owns The Knitting Goddess with her husband Bobbie.  The yarn I’ve used is their Hand Dyed Chunky Roving which is 100% Blue Faced Leicester.  It feels as soft as it looks too and the striking contrast in colours really makes the Linen Stitch pop.

Red

The beautiful shade is called Semi Solid Red

Turquoise

and this even more gorgeous one is called Turquoise Haze

Fortunately, the lovely Dr. Sock had recently knitted a scarf in Linen Stitch and we had searched for the best cast off method to use at the time, so I was ahead of the game and knew to go with a sewn cast off.  225 stitches and a couple of hours later (at least it seemed like it), the cowl was complete.

The eagle eyed amongst you may have noticed that there’s a twist in the cowl and if you look at the pattern on Ravelry there isn’t.  I was horrified 🙈 when I noticed and even took it off of my needles and tried it on to see what it would look like.  By happy coincidence, it’s probably made it sit a little better, making it snugger and as a result cosier 👌

The recipient agrees – but she would, wouldn’t she?

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 ♥

What do you think?

Happy Knitting!

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Stripey or Stripy? Crochet Cushion

Apparently it can be either and Dina my word buff isn’t here to advise.

You might have seen a photo of the stripey crochet cushion I’d been working on in Stylecraft Lullaby yarn in my previous post?  I’d already knitted some baby booties with the yarn when it first came into the shop but hadn’t gotten around to crocheting with it and as it’s being cleared now, there was some urgency.

When I first saw the yarn the colours reminded me of the palette used in a lot of the Cath Kidson products and instantly brought to mind stripes, so after much picking and choosing I opted to use 11 shades for my cushion(s).

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Top row – Winter White, Primrose, Rosebud, Opal &nDeep Blue Bottom row – Candy, Cloud, Spearmint, Berry & Ivory On top – Sand

My crochet is not the best, give me any kind of knitting and even if I haven’t worked the stitch before I’ll figure it out, but I can’t say the same for crochet.  Yes I can work out how to make the stitches, but counting the ones I’ve already worked is something I just can’t get the hang of.

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See it’s wonky
Wonkier still
Wonkier still

Using a 4mm hook I made 54 chain stitches and then 2 more for turning to count as 1 dc.  In the top photo I changed my colours after the first four rows and then every 2 rows until I reached the last 4 rows which I worked in one colour again.  (The photo should actually be the other way round as I started with the red and finished with the lemon.)

Anyway, there are 60 rows because I wanted it to fit very snuggly around the 16″ cushion I bought, which is now a rather plump 15″.

For the second side I changed the colours every 4 rows.

After weaving in my ends it became obvious how little attention I’d paid to my stitches, particularly on the second side (embarrassed).

Undeterred and because time is in short supply round here,  I joined 3 of the sides using double crochet with the right sides facing out.  I then squished the cushion inside and holding the remaining edges together with pins I continued to crochet round, cutting and sewing in the ends when they met.

Oops! Nearly forgot to say that I crocheted an extra chain at the corners so the stitches didn’t pull too much.

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Not sure it’s too obvious how wonky it was to begin with now.
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Would have preferred it if I had managed to find a cream cushion though.

Not too bad for a couple of evenings work and as you might expect, I have quite a lot of the yarn left so I can make another one to match.  Wonky edges and all.

Sitting happily on The Green Bin :-)
Sitting happily on The Green Bin 🙂

Happy Knitting! maybe that should be happier knitting?

Wendy Ramsdale

Ramsdale ball

Yes it is as lovely as it looks.

Ramsdale is one of the new yarns released by Wendy for Autumn/Winter 2014.  It’s a pure wool, double knit yarn so as you would expect the recommended needle size is 4mm with a knitted tension of 22 stitches to 28 rows.

Each 50g ball costs €4.99 and contains 112 metres of woolly goodness, which should of course be hand washed.

ramsdale shades

There are 10 Autumnal shades in the range, sadly the first hasn’t arrived in after stock issues with the manufacturer.  This little glitch is made even more annoying as it’s the shade I’ve knitted up as a sample garment (Grrr).

However, the garment is lovely.  Some of you might have caught my sneaky photos on Instagram of it being knitted and then blocking in the sun?

The pattern is called Poolside by Isabell Kraemer and costs €4.90 on Ravelry.  Knitted top down the design is detailed and easy to follow and contains instructions for seven sizes from XS to XXL, I’ve made the small (35″ chest) as the top part of the jumper is meant to be fitted.  In total I used 9 balls of Ramsdale having knitted it slightly shorter, to fit my 5ft 3″ frame and I blocked it quite vigorously to open out the lace.

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Before
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After

I loved the look of the lace pattern before blocking, but wanted the garment to have a more A-line shape to it, which I achieved by stretching and pinning it out whilst damp.

2014-09-11 11.15.17The good news is it’s on display in the shop for all to see, which is bad news for me, because I won’t get to wear it for a good while yet.

Happy Knitting!

New, New, New

The very much anticipated Pompon Party from Rico arrived in the shop last week.  As you can see from the photograph, the 6 new shades are baby inspired and great for blankets and cushions.

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Sadly, as you might expect some of the old shades have been retired to make way for the new colours, including the beautiful cornflower blue and the cheerful carnival multicoloured Pompon Print 😦

I’m often asked if I could post up the information sheet I give you when you purchase the yarn and I will ASAP, promise.

In addition to all the lovely yarn I’ve been unpacking of late these little beauties arrived yesterday and were waiting for me when I got home.

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We’ve been fans of McAnarcks Buttons for some time now and this is the latest batch from Fran.  All handmade, aren’t they lovely?  I’m sure they’ll sell as quickly as ever, so if you’ve been waiting on them to come back in get into us quick fast.

Shall have to go now as I really must finish my latest shop sample – a little raglan cardi.

Happy Knitting!