Sunday, 18 August 2013

Normal service is resumed

Back to normality with a bump!

It now seems like an eternity since my holiday! How does that happen? Going back to work was mildly depressing, getting back on the hamster wheel of hell will do that to you!  As it goes though, it's been an uneventful week.

It's been a quiet one on the home front too. Ben has been staying with friends all week, and it's weird not to have him around. I know he's been away before, but that was with school and that's different (in my head it is OK!?) communications have been patchy at best. He went with his iPod, so he could message us or face-time us. He did neither, it's a good thing really because it means that he was too busy being happy to think about talking to us. I could reassure myself he was still alive by checking my friend's Facebook page for updates!

As I type this he's back home now and catching up on some desperately needed sleep!

On the crafting front, again normal service has been resumed. Work keeps eating up my time, it does get in the way of the good things in life!

Feeling the love this week -

It's been a Makai week for me. Mel's pattern is great, I'm enjoying the way mine is knitting up. Makai means "by the see" or "looking out to the sea", and Mel has designed it as such. Mine is a sunset sea, the neck cover at the top is the setting sun, then we have the horizon and the rippled sea below that.

I'm still working on Clue 1, I'm miles behind, and it's taken ages for the pattern to click in my head. I have to admit that up to this point, I was finding the knit hard going. I'm an intuitive knitter, I like to be able to knit without referring to a pattern all of the time. Now, I must stress here, the pattern is not difficult, neither is it badly written; it's just my brain not clicking with the pattern.  A few days ago it finally clicked. I decided to write myself a post-it note with just the beginning of the pattern rows on as a crib sheet. As I did that I saw the pattern, the rhythmn of the pattern sang out to me. Now I'm flying towards the shore! Work was somewhat delayed by the centre increase in the body of the pattern claiming it's first victim:

I managed to snap my KnitPro interchangeable right at the base where the wood meets the metal housing. I'm gutted. These needles have a lifetime guarantee, but you have to send them back to the place you bought them for a replacement and mine were a gift. So I've replaced them. And, seeing as how I was online and I needed to spend enough to get free postage a few other things may have fallen into my basket! Oops! More about that later though. While I was shopping, a pair of Addi Lace needles fell into the basket and I've swapped over to using this needle. Oh! My! Life! Don't get me wrong, I love my Knit Pro needles and wouldn't be without them, but these Addi's are divine! I mean, gorgeous. They're light, the wire is flexible, the tips are just pointy enough without splitting the yarn and the shaft of the needle is slippy enough to allow quick movement of the stitches. Maybe this is why the shawl is progressing as happily as it is now.

I've been almost monogamous in my knitting, Neil's socks have maybe had 2 rows added to them, if that!

I've spent a great deal of my evenings spinning. I wanted to finish the black and silver merino that's been on the wheel for so long now. I finished plying it on Saturday night. As spinning with intent goes, it was an epic fail. I wanted to spin a heavier weight yarn than I usually do. I was aiming for a sport to DK weight, so I wanted my singles to be about a fingering weight. As I was plying it became evident that my consistency in the singles was erratic at best! I was actually better at spinning thicker on the first black single, the silver one was much thinner and consequently I ended up with 450 yards of the finished 2 ply and 240 yards of an N-ply silver yarn! Dear Lord!

Both of these skeins will end up with my mum. She is getting back to knitting after many years off and she rang me the other day to ask if I could find out some information about some yarn on offer on a shopping channel. It was 60% acrylic, 20% nylon and 20% wool. Ick!! It was an aran weight too, so I suggested that despite the price, there might be nicer yarns out there! I decided that this yarn should be hers so that she can have some nice real yarn in her stash!

Next on the wheel is 100g of Nunoco precious! I'm spinning some of their top this time and it's for a very special person. I'm aiming to get over 1000 yards of a laceweight. I'm concentrating on my consistency, it's much better when I spin thin, but I want it to be perfect for her. She deserves the best!

It's spinning up wafer thin and it's a joy to work with, but I wouldn't expect any less from the Nunoco girls!

In other news - 

As I mentioned before, I had to replace needles this week. I went to my usual web shop - and they didn't have what I needed, so a quick internet search later and I was on a new site to me - I can't recommend this site enough. They have a great range and their service is good too. I ordered my goodies, and they where delivered the next day! Fantastic. The packaging was fabulous too! The yarn I bought came in it's own lovely bag, the shawl pins came wrapped in tissue, the needles came wrapped in bubblewrap and tissue. I might be a little bit addicted! When I registered with the site I got a discount code, it didn't arrive in my in-box in time for me to use it this time, so that just means I'll have to shop with them again! Ah well, I'll take one for the team!

I also got a delivery from Nunoco. Again!!! But in my defense, I was spending birthday money this time!

OK, from the top, there is Magic Garden, then Jewel Bug, then 2 batt droppings. I was so excited because that dropping on the left exactly matches my hair!!! On the left is a set of Chromatops, they're destined to be a gradient. So much to spin, so little time!!

On the horizon - 

I'm going to be working on Makai this week, I'll also be working on the new fibre on the wheel. I'm happy to work on these to projects. While I know that I've got other things to work on, I love to spend my time on these two. Happy days.

All the best for the week guys!

See you next time x