Wednesday, 11 January 2012

First WIP Wednesday (for me) of 2012

Right. This is my first WIP Wednesday post of 2012, indeed I have not done one for a very long while. As ever, thank you to Tami for hosting WIP Wednesday, that triumphant union of alliteration and a great meme idea, and, if you go to Tami’s blog you will find lots of other posts, and who knows, you might find inspiration or a new favourite blog.

I am afraid this post is just going to be a great big pictorial splurge of everything I am currently making and my random thoughts about it all. (Although, just think, we may have a WIP in the future which is a drawing of The Erotic Line, wouldn’t that be exciting. I have looked through my stuff this morning and I have found a sketchbook! God knows how I have acquired a sketchbook, but that is making it all look much more promising. I could frame my sketch if I did one, and put it in the living room! Anyway on with WIPs).
It will be ugly, but, it will go through the washer
First, a confession. God. After everything I have said, everything I have written, etc etc, in the darkest days around November/ December I became seduced, like a thunderbolt, by the Lizard Ridge Afghan, and I bought a couple of balls of Noro Kureyon to try out a few squares. Now I really, really, don’t want to sound like I’m damning this pattern with faint praise, because, I’m really not. It’s a beautiful pattern, simple to knit, really effective, and the Kureyon looks just beautiful – I think I can hand on heart say I love every one of the billion or so projects on Ravelry. But I got half way through one of the squares, and I thought, what the hell am I doing? I hate short rows, and I’m going to end up with a great big hairy blanket I can’t wash very easily (Kureyon isn’t going through the washer on a wool wash any time soon, trust me on this one) and £150 lighter. Because however much I might have told myself I was spreading the cost over a year – and I was – that’s how much it would have cost. And I had a slightly tragic evening where I made a mental list of what else I could spend £150 on, from the gas bill to raised beds for the garden and a new bra that doesn’t make me look like Brunhilde (or, you know, ALL OF THOSE THINGS AND ENOUGH LEFT OVER FOR A HOT PIE,) and it became clear to me that I would rather spend £150 on almost anything else than wool for a blanket I would have to handwash and keep away from Partner, who spills. So I am going to sell the leftover wool on ebay and pay for a yoga class – hooray! And I have dug out my granny squares, and I am going to make a blanket I will be able to drag into the garden and sit communing with nature under. Cost of blanket so far = £0. All from leftovers (although I’m sure I’ll need to buy a few balls at some point).
Gosh, is it an accurate representation of the New York skyline or is it a knitting needle case
This is a patchwork needle case I designed and made – with embroidered stars! I’m hoping this is going to be published somewhere so perhaps forget you’ve seen it for the moment ;-). There may be more embroidery on this blog in the future. In fact I may even drag out and finish my Subversive Stitching cross stitch which says Bite Me, as I gave up on it because it seemed daft, but now I have heard Penny say Bite Me on the Big Bang Theory so I know what it means (I think it means, like, Sod You or something).
Quirky contrast stitching! You eat your heart out, Phoebe Philo
OK, this is going to be a skirt (this is my design). My other thing I have been thinking is, when I make things for myself to wear, I don’t always finish them and value them properly. When I make things to sell or for other people, I weave all the ends in, sew in a nice label etc etc, go the extra mile, but, for me, I whip it out from under the sewing machine and start wearing it with my oldest jumper with holes in to take the rubbish out. So, what if I made a few things for myself and finished them carefully, label and everything, then wore them as if they were expensive designer pieces, i.e. ironed, and styled, with accessories? Just to see if it felt any different. And this skirt is my first experiment. OK, it looks odd now. I shall show it to you again when it’s finished and we’ll see what it looks like then. I’m making this from leftover black jersey and tshirts which would have been donated, so cost so far = less than £5 (I had to buy new overlocker thread), although I may have to buy some fabric for a waistband, I’m not sure.
2mm needles. You could take an eye out with those, you know
My Odi and Amo mittens! (These are my design too). They got neglected in the Christmas knitting, but, I’ve dragged them out again, and I’m halfway done with the first one. I think I’m going to have to do something to highlight the ampersand (on the front - this is the back) a bit better, but, when I’ve testknitted my first pair, I shall see what I think (I’m trying to avoid stranding three colours. I’m not going to manage it). I shall keep you updated,
Do you know how much fun it is to try not to twist a 288 stitch cast on? It's no fun at all
And, my Anne Kingstone vest. This is a new WIP. You may remember (you don’t have to. I don’t make you take notes), last year a mail order company sent me a dead cockroach (by mistake) and gave me some compensatory hush money, which I spent on a knitting kit which I had a bit of trouble ordering but got eventually? (I don't necessarily recommend this as a method of affording yarn, but sometimes the stars align). Well, this was the kit, and I have started the vest, which is A Great British Knit, which used to be the Knit Camp Vest but which understandably Anne has renamed (if you have not discovered Anne’s patterns, she has got some really nice ones, you might want to have a look). I am on the corrugated rib at the bottom, and it is quite slow going so far but I am enjoying it. I will be honest and say that I think my chances of knitting this thing successfully are not high – I am mostly worried about gauge, and I am suspecting I will get 10 inches in and have to unravel the whole thing and restart with a smaller size, and that will be a Hideous Performance and I will be very sad and depressed. But we’ll see, and I don’t know unless I try, and there’s no rush, is there? And I’m not going to get a wonderful quasi-ironic nerd-chic woolly tank top with sheep on unless I knit it myself, am I now? I mean, the new Boden catalogue has just come through the door and I could check, but, yeah. I’m pretty sure there are no fairisle sheep in it. (Flexes fingers). Perhaps I should just knit it, see what size it ends up, then either lose weight or put it on to fit: altering my own gauge, so to speak. That might be a better option for all we reluctant swatchers.

OK, going off to do useful things (ha). Do have a look at the other WIP Wed participants, and enjoy the sunshine!


Karen said...

Everything looks great! I love your squares and you are totally right about it having to be washable. I can't imagine knitting a blanket that was hand wash only.

Ginny said...

Hi I love the Lizard Ridge Afghan, and for all the same reasons stopped myself from starting it! This year I want to learn how to crochet a ripple blanket. Love Lissuin by Anne Kingson, thanks for the link, I see that in my future!!

Mami Dearest said...

The mittens are great! And I love your squares! I don't think they are ugly :)

Alittlebitsheepish said...

Lots of projects that are full of superness. But most of all I love the Great Biritsh knit vest, I feel myself wanting one very badly. Even though I don't think I could carry it off and I have yet to master colourwork

Susie Jefferson said...

Love the Granny squares - I'm going to do a sofa throw (remember Roseanne?) but naturally have nothing suitable, so it's going to cost me a bomb probably. RE not knitting with that expensive wool - really sensible! And you'll feel so virtuous!

Marie/Underground Crafter said...

As always, I am thoroughly entertained by your posts and am strongly considering the cockroach method of yarn obtainment.

I feel the same about afghans - if I can't machine wash them, no one in my household can use them (not me with my spills, not my partner without socks on, and not my cat with his hairballs and sneezes).

I knew some drawing supplies would surface - they always seem to be available.