Thursday, 28 March 2013

March Makings

March's Finished Objects...

SB Project 6 (60g):
I had some King Cole Mirage yarn which had been bought for a mitred square project but the colour repeat was too long to work with that pattern.  So I tried various other ideas after that but nothing quite worked...

I finally settled on this Rollercoaster Scarf design.

It was interesting enough to work on, and the colour repeat was almost perfect for the ribbing, but I have to admit I'm not totally happy with the result.  Perhaps there just wasn't enough yarn to make it the right size, but the finished scarf doesn't want to wrap nicely around my neck.  If I was to try again, then maybe a bigger needle would have given a better drape, although I think the yarn just doesn't want to relax enough to give a comfortable shape (despite blocking).  It's a shame because I do like the colours, but at least I tried.

SB Project 7 (30g):
I had a single skein remaining of the Debbie Bliss Paloma, so made a pair of wristlets for myself.  They were an enjoyable knit during a couple of car journeys, with some extra time for the thumbs.  I've made the thumb cast-offs slightly too tight for comfort, so will probably need to unpick those and redo, but otherwise I love the soft warmth of the yarn.

SB Project 8 (55g):
We visited Kirkwall in Orkney last year during a mini-cruise for our 10th wedding anniversary, and I bought a couple of balls of yarn as souvenirs.  One ball became a Zig-zag Möbius Cowl which I wear daily, and the other has been used for a pair of fingerless mitts for myself.

I've really enjoyed this yarn; it's been very forgiving to work with and, although slightly scratchy at first, is lovely and soft to wear.  It makes such a difference using real wool and I'm sure these mitts will become firm favourites once the unusually freezing spring weather has subsided.

I also managed to pass on 2350g of random yarns to our church knit and natter group.

So that gives me a grand total of... very nearly 2500g stash-busted in March.  I'm very pleased :-)

Tuesday, 26 March 2013

In search of inspiration (or "why use silk when you have cotton?")

I seem to have built up quite a collection of cotton yarns...  Two in particular are taking my attention at the moment, where I've got a few balls to work with but just don't know what to make from them.

First, there is the yarn from an unsuccessful lace cardigan I was making myself a couple of years ago:
I got the decreases wrong for the sleeve and couldn't work out how to fix without starting over, so now I have 6 balls of green cotton dk yarn without a project.

And then there are the 6 balls of cotton 4-ply which I bought for a song from a local shop's bargain bin:
I'm using some to make a stretchy market bag, but I'm stumped for how to use the rest.

Neither yarn has a friend to go with them, and I don't want to waste the larger amounts I've got... so I'm in search of some inventive ideas for my cotton stash.

Wednesday, 13 March 2013

It's a chilly spring so far

Spring's on the way, but it's still pretty cold (-5°C yesterday morning!!) so my current stash-buster projects are some warm fingerless mitts...

I did most of the work for these during a car journey to and from a friend's birthday party 2 1/2 hours away.  They were a satisfyingly quick knit, although I've been slow in getting round to doing the final thumb... almost finished though.  
I could have done with making them slightly bigger but I do like the feeling of the soft yarn.

And I've also made one of a pair of Fetching mitts.  I cast on during the knit & natter at the church weekend away - some passers-by were a bit baffled by the double-pointed needles ("you're knitting with 4 needles!") but I made good progress when I wasn't chatting too much.  I think I may have miscounted when to do the cable row once or twice, but I like the feel of knitting with proper wool.  I don't have a ladder where the needles changed, and I'm sure it's down to the yarn texture.

So that's two active stash-buster challenge projects.

And I'm also working on another BSJ... this one is intended for my cousin's baby which is due in June.  I won't see her until a couple of months later though, so I'm using a slightly thicker yarn and bigger needles.

I've found the perfect buttons already.  We were looking round a craft fair a couple of weekends ago and found a stall selling various handmade items from a local enterprise company for people with learning difficulties.  We bought a few cards and I managed to only buy 3 sets of buttons:

I was impressed with the range and quality though (did I mention the handmade bags?) so I'll be keeping an eye out for more craft events from them.

Wednesday, 6 March 2013

Facing reality and boosting the destash

Looking through my stash, there are a number of bits and pieces that I'm probably not going to get round to using...  but perhaps I can use them to inspire others.  My church is having a weekend away, and one of the ladies is planning a knit and natter session for the Saturday afternoon.  I've offered my stash of dk acrylic yarn as something for any newbies who might like to join in.  She also knows someone at a local charity shop (Hospice at Home) who will happily take in yarn to make into sellable objects.

So... first there's the freebie yarns from magazines (about 550g):

The dk yarns come to about 1000g:
The giant granny square they're sitting on is about 125g.  I'm not sure what to do with that just yet...

and this bag of random yarns that I took off someone else's hands during a destash(!) is about 550g:

I also have half a ball of scarf yarn which is left from a Christmas present I made about a year ago.  I'm not likely to make another from this, but perhaps someone else will enjoy it (95g):

So that gives me a grand total (without the granny square UFO) of about 2200g!!

It would have been nice to try to make something out of these myself, but reality kicked in to tell me that just wasn't going to happen.  I hope they'll be able to go to a good home though, and maybe even help create some new yarn addicts at this weekend's knit and natter time...

And it feels good to have a newly empty box in the cupboard.

(a day later...) oops!  I found some more: there's another 150g to go in the bag (half freebie yarn, and the rest is the remains of the Fab dk from the BSJ).

So that bring the given-away-total to 2350g...  (My husband's very pleased!)