More rainbows

I finished the socks that I promised my friend I’d finish off for her. These have gone off to her Dad to see if they fit before I knit the second pair I promised. The pattern is the Winwick Mum contrast heel, toe and cuff pattern, incorporating a garter rib stitch pattern from Sensational Knitted Socks. Yarn is WYS signature 4ply in spearmint and kingfisher.

And I’ve finished the shawl of doom pattern. This is the Stylecraft Head over Heels sawtooth edge crescent shawl. You may have noticed that it doesn’t appear to be a crescent. I HATED this pattern so much. It is very poorly written and, with hindsight, it was a mistake to choose a pattern which so few people had knitted and those who had seemed to have had problems with it. I haven’t darned in the ends yet or blocked it as I haven’t decided whether it’s even going to stay like this, or whether just to unravel the whole thing. Disappointing.

But I have cast on for an exciting new project. A friend is expecting a baby and I wanted to make her a blanket. After much indecision on my part, Greensideknits suggested this Gansey Afghan pattern, which I really like, so have gone with that. It is much better written than the shawl above! ūüėČ I decided that I wanted something brighter but appropriate for either gender and that I’d get bored if I knitted it all in one colour, so decided on doing a rainbox, having seen one like that in the existing projects on Ravelry. Much cogitation about yarn then occurred, but I eventually settled on Paintbox yarn cotton aran as it offered me a whole range of lovely colours to choose from. These are the colours I eventually went with granite grey for borders and garter stitch sections, possibly a lighter grey would work better? The rainbow colours are:¬† red wine, Seville orange, buttercup yellow, spearmint green, marine blue, royal blue, rich mauve.


These were all ordered from Love Knitting, who delivered really fast! I am pleased with the yarn as it not only gives the shade number but also the name on the ball band – I hate having to try and work out which shade is which with only a number to go on. This is a big project – the baby is due in June – but hopefully I’ll have enough time. I don’t have anything else on the needles at the moment other than maybe that second pair of socks – which will become my portable project once the blanket becomes too big to take outside the house.

Oh, and stash update so far this year. Well, the socks don’t count in my stash tally as the yarn wasn’t mine. So, so far this year:

Yarn in: 1530 metres

Yarn out: 500 metres

So, a high yarn in total at the moment, but that was the yarn for the blanket, so most of that will get knitted up!


Knitting plans 2018

So, we’re already well into January so I’m a bit late to this! I have a few priorities for knitting this year. One is to sort out a few already-finished projects which need darning or mending in some way so that I can carry on wearing them. One of these is my Owls jumper, which has sprouted a hole just below the neck ribbing. I think this is from pulling it over my head (I am particularly prone to doing this whilst still wearing my glasses…) but a little bit of darning should sort it out. I am about 99% certain it isn’t caused by moths.

I’d also like to finish off the Hey Teach which I almost completed last year, but the sleeves turned out to be too tight at the armholes, and I lacked the enthusiasm to do something about it then.

I need to finish off the two pairs of socks which I mentioned in my earlier post about 2017 knitting – the ones I promised my terminally ill friend that I would finish for her. So, I still have 2.5 actual socks to knit for that. The yarn for the second pair is already wound into two matching balls, as I wound them up for her and dropped them off to her at the hospice, but sadly she could no longer knit for the last month of her life. The yarn is the West Yorkshire Spinners 4 ply signature sock in the Marie Curie colourway. This is the first sock of the first pair for her – using the WYS 4ply signature sock in the kingfisher colourway for the cuffs, heels and toes.

I’ve also realised that I need to have a sort out in my sock drawer, after I ended up washing 18 pairs of handknitted socks last weekend! I have a pile of about four pairs waiting for some kind of mending, but my sock drawer is now at capacity, so I need to have a think about whether to get rid of some of these socks – there are some early examples that don’t fit particularly well (in the days when I didn’t know which type of heel worked best for me) and there are others that have worn holes, and I need to make a decision about repair or not. What do you do about repairing knitted items? Do you always repair, or do you get rid/frog?

And, of course, there is the yarn I got for Christmas which I’m looking forward to knitting up! I think all that will keep me busy for a while.

Knitting round up 2017

2017 turned into a bit of a strange year for knitting. I was trying to knit from stash whilst spending most of my money on childcare. The stash knitting went well, although my stash in/out totals for the year ended up the wrong way round as I was given yarn as presents (how dare they!!)

My last stash bust project of the year was another Beyond Puerperium, 6-12 month size for a friend’s baby. This used up the leftovers of my Rowan Amy Butler organic Aran wool/CottonRowan Amy Butler organic Aran wool/Cotton. I really enjoyed knitting with this yarn, originally purchased half price in the John Lewis sale when I worked in central London in 2011. Sadly the yarn is now discontinued. The recipient’s Mum isn’t a knitter but was very pleased with it!

Other projects completed this year include two rainbow jumpers for LO, one of which is pictured, using West Yorkshire Spinners Aire Valley DK. The pattern for both was Conscious. These have already had a lot of wear, as they are easy to get on and off (there are buttons at the shoulder) and the yarn is machine washable.


I also did a Beyond Puerperium in the two year size for LO, using Ella Rae Cozy Soft Prints, which again has been really useful and is a nice soft machine washable yarn.


The third Conscious I knitted was for my niece, who turned out to have a wool allergy (hence why LO ended up with both of the rainbow jumpers!). For this one I used Louisa Harding Noema, which was quite nice to knit with (I don’t normally really enjoy knitting with cotton) and has a slight sparkle to it, which my niece apparently loves!

I’ve also knitted a few dolls’ clothes. This is a dress knitted for my Goddaughter’s doll using up the leftovers from the Beyond Perperium

My stash knitting totals have also been affected by a couple of other projects. The week before Christmas I decided LO’s doll would like a hat, so knitted one out of some oddments of DK that someone had passed onto me but which hadn’t been recorded in my stash.


A close friend died in September, and, before she died, I promised her that I’d finish off a couple of knitting projects she hadn’t had time to finish – which turned out to be two pairs of socks for her Dad, who has size 11 feet! So, I haven’t added this yarn to stash, but it has meant a lot of my knitting time has been taken up with knitting these. She was using the Winwick Mum contrast cuff, heel and toe pattern, and the yarn is WYS signature 4ply, in the kingfisher colourway plus contrast.

So, stash in and out in 2017:

In 7256.3 metres

Out 4588.4 metres

so I acquired 2667.9 metres more than I used in 2017. However, 2660 metres of that was gifted to me, leaving only 7.9 metres over! It is safe to say that, had I been doing all of my own knitting, I’d have used up more than I acquired.

Happy New Year 2018!

Well, it’s been a while since I last posted. Work has been busy, as has life at home with a toddler and there never seems to be time to get on top of things. Plus I’ve acquired some more blogs to read, which means even less time for blogging myself!

I was lucky enough to receive some lovely knitting related presents this year. The first from a friend was a knitting bag with sheep on!

The second, from my brother’s family, nearly matches up my hobby with my career – knitting and rare books/manuscripts! I’m really looking forward to having a closer look at this when I get some time – I don’t go back to work until Wednesday but nursery reopens for LO tomorrow.

Then I had some Jamie and Smith 2ply jumper weight from OH and LO. This is to make Bluebells by Kate Davies. Can’t wait to get started on this, although I have various projects to get finished first… More in another post!

Finally, my BIL gave me two balls of Rico Pompon yarn, which I haven’t used before but looks interesting. I will probably make something for LO with it.

Our New Year was fairly quiet. We stopped staying up until midnight several years ago as we couldn’t see the point, especially once we had a baby and prioritising sleep becomes very important! Today we had a day out to a garden centre with a soft play to burn off some energy (LO, not us!) and lunch out, before returning home for her nap time.

How was your New Year?


So I’ve been doing lots of knitting in July. In my last stash update I reported the purchase of three balls of West Yorkshire Spinners Aire Valley DK yarn in the rum¬†paradise colourway.
This was intended to be knitted up into two Conscious jumpers for LO and her cousin, who is three months older. Three balls should be just about enough for two jumpers in 2-3 year size.

Here we are in progress. The first jumper I was really careful about matching stripes on the sleeves. The yarn is nice to knit with and the stripes are a really sensible size Рwould look lovely as a pair of socks!
Ta da, here is the finished jumper for my niece.

I weighed the yarn leftover and realised that I had used more than 1.5 balls of the Aire Valley DK already, so decided to use some turquoise oddments someone had given me to finish the sleeves on the second jumper. This is LO’s favourite colour so I thought she’d like it like that. I used up every scrap of the Aire Valley, hence the non-matching sleeves on this one.

Then, disaster. LO and I went to visit her cousins, and I discovered that the smallest one can’t wear wool, so LO now has two rainbow jumpers!

And I now have four balls of Louisa Harding Noema yarn (a cotton/acrylic mix) to make a non-wool Conscious. It’s a good thing I enjoy knitting this pattern…

Anyone had a similar change of plan with their knitting?!

Stash update

It’s been a while since I updated my stash/yarn diet tally on here. I keep a spreadsheet to track it as I go.

My stash totals for February, March and April were quite respectable. Well, I didn’t buy any yarn, and in February knitted up 300 metres and in March 182.9 metres, giving a total used up by then of 759.4 metres! April and May I didn’t finish any projects, so haven’t got any used up totals from then.

May and June it all went a bit off the rails though. I bought three balls of West Yorkshire Spinners Aire Valley DK cocktail collection in colourway Rum Paradise to make jumpers for LO and her cousin.


Then I discovered that our local yarn shop/haberdashery was closing down, so decided to go along and see if I could get enough yarn for the sample jumper I’d admired in there, as everything was 20%off.


That resulted in seven balls of Stylecraft Alpaca Tweed Chunky coming home with me to make the jumper I’d been eyeing up. Plus a couple of balls of Head over Heels sock yarn to make a shawl with (a simple shawl, that should be compatible with TV knitting).

Of course, this didn’t do much for my stash totals. But then a knitting group friend posted a link to City Knits who were offering a special edition of WYS Signature 4ply to raise money for Marie Curie. And they had suggested coordinating solids to go with it… One of my friends is having cancer treatment at the moment so…


Yes, I bought three balls, in the Marie Curie colourway, plus blueberry bonbon and butterscotch. I’m intending these to be knitted up into cardigans for LO and her cousin for Christmas.

That means that my stash in total suddenly became 2941 metres for June (OOPS), although someone then got in touch on Ravelry wanting to buy some yarn I had in my stash from a John Lewis sale, so that meant 1800 metres headed out again, which has balanced it up a little bit. I’m still hoping to have used up more by the end of the year than has come in.

Still, I do have plans for all of it, and am excited at the prospect of these projects, so that’s the main thing. Not like my early days of knitting when I bought more random stuff just because I liked it…


Socks finished! 

Finished the Broadripple socks in Cascade Fixation. They have turned out well and are comfy to wear. I’m still not sure what I think about the yarn but it’ll be nice to have a pair of knitted cotton socks when the weather gets warmer. 

It’s DK weight yarn so they are quite thick to wear but fit inside my trainers ok. I hope the thickness won’t make my feet hot though! That used up almost an entire two balls of Fixation from my stash. 

So, it was time to cast on something other than socks. I’d had Hey Teach in m queue since it was published on Knitty and Pakucho Organic Cotton yarn in my stash since I ordered it from Elann a very long time ago when interest rates made North American yarn very bargainous. Must have been pre-recession in 2008?! I think it must have been in my stash for at least eleven years as I definitely bought it before relocating south. 

LO thought that winding up ten skeins into balls was very exciting and insisted on helping. Consequentially it took ages. 
What have you knitted from your stash that’s been there a while?!