Sunday, August 24, 2008

when I'm counting it means don't speak to me...

So close ... I only had 11 rows to go.

I'm so tired that I have no words - I've been knitting frantically all weekend and am a bit disappointed that I failed this Olympics too.

Ah well, there's always Vancouver

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Day 8

Day 8; Things are going well - finished the waist decreases, and the increases. I made a mistake below - One of the cable crosses went the wrong way. But as I discovered this about 3 inches later on, I can live with it!

I had a lovely day today - we went through to Edinburgh to see Lilith's Trunk Show at K1 Yarns. SHe had made a seriously large bundle of sumptiously yummy yarn! I spent enough to get a pretty emergency yarn keyring.

Here's Lilith's legs spinning away - she didn't want her photo taken but Ysolda didn't mind. The Edinburgh shop is really nice, and has lots of comfy chairs to sit and knit. There's even tea and cake!

Here's some shots of Old Maiden Aunt Baby Alpaca, Silk and Cashmere blend laceweight - it's so beautiful!

And some Noro Silk Garden Lite, and Orkney Angora for gloves and hats. I know I shouldn't have spent so much, but having to stay faithful to one project made my eyes wander onto yummy yarns!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Day 5

Day 5. I had a wee couple of days off from blogging ... there's really not that much to say. Knat more, got a bit further!

Realised that when I change from knitting in the round to knitting flat for the armhole/neck bit that the stripes will get wider. I have decided to start flat knitting a wee bit earlier so that the wider stripes start below the boobs, instead right over the middle of them. It may even make them look them bigger - which is always a good thing!

Suppose I better get back to it - I'm enjoying it despite the tone of this post. It's been a long and rainy day - it feels there is no sun in the summer anymore.

I found out from Revenue & Customs that the very exciting news about an EU regulation increasing the import duties threshold when buying from outside the EU from a pathetic £18 to a more respectable £105, is in fact going to make no difference at all to us *biggest sigh ever*

Basically (if you're interested) the custom duty level will raise to £105 before you have to pay duty. The VAT rate however, remains as payable on anything with a value over £18.

Therefore, buying anything over £18 will incur a 17.5% charge on not only the goods value, but also the freight and insurance charges, plus the £8 handling fee from Royal Mail.

I know that I shouldn't be buying yarn from abroad because of the carbon footprint, but really - elann and knitpicks can make me a 100% wool jumper for £17 - you'd be hard-pressed to achieve this in the UK for less than £50 (unless you go with scratchy 100% wool, or a wool-blend)

So I'm a bit grumpy, because I was imagining all the Socks that Rock joy that was going to be heading my way... ah well! There's plenty of good stuff here, I know. The grass is always greener elsewhere!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Day 3

Day 3 - getting on quite well. My finger's are a bit achey now - but I work full-time, so I wanted to knit as much as possible during the weekend while I can. It's been a lovely weekend on the sofa with knitting and Sky TV.

Last night after I posted I realised that the Honeycomb cable was 'jogged' over a stitch from the rib, and wasn't flowing nicely from the rib. After knitting the cable row (which takes 45 minutes!) I was halfway through the next row when it became clear.

I knat on for another 20-odd stitches trying to convince myself that it didn't bother me. Then I knat on for a few more stitches while I tried to come to terms with the inevitable.

It took a while but I tinked it back before going to bed so that I could start this morning fresh and going forwards.

Because of the twisted rib it wasn't really possible to frog back the 2 rows easily. The rib also confused me and I managed to put all the stitches back on the needle twisted... So a row that already took 45 minutes now took even longer because I had to straighten all the stitches...

The good news is that I'm getting faster at the cable row now, and can do it in front of the TV instead of having to go and sit in the bedroom.

The pattern is looking lovely, but the decreases are not written in - there's just instructions on how to do them depending on whether the decrease row is a cable one or not.

So that's fine, but then the rows after don't 'work' anymore, and I have to figure out how to do myself. It's quite good for learning the intricacies of the pattern, but not so great for a Ravelympics projects, because I don't have time to arse it up...

Anyway, better get back to it I suppose!

Saturday, August 09, 2008

Day 2

Day 2; Got all the twisted rib bit done. 22 rows, plus the 1st row of the cable pattern. That's 4784 stitches!

I'm liking the twisted rib. It's the first time I've knit rib like this and it gives a nice effect, although is quite hard going knitting through the back loop for so long.

I love the way that the colourway is going better for this than it did for the test square, and the colour changes are driving me to keep knitting.

That's it for today, since Tiscali is charging me £14.99 a month for an broadband connection that is so slow I'm nearly in tears. Every sentence takes about 1 minutes to process. I also discovered that typing whole paragraph and knitting whilst waiting for it to catch up only angers Tiscali and it steals my words and replaces them with a flashing cursor.

Grr! Off back to knitting. Until tomorrow!

Friday, August 08, 2008

It has begun

It has begun! I got to see the amazing drummers counting down the start of the opening ceremony and a nano-second of the fireworks, and then I had to go back to work as my lunch was over.

So I didn't get to cast on until a couple of hours later in my teabreak.

The atmosphere in the Ravelry Ravelympics group is electric! There's an Opening Ceremony Stadium Parade where all the knitters are parading around a virtual stadium waving their sticks and yarn in the air. There's stats so you can see your event and how many projects are in, and how many are complete.

I'm in Vest Vault, and there are 222 of us knitting vests.

There's even a souvenir booth!

Here's my progress so far. I had a brief panic as I realised that I hadn't thought about the maths involved in converting the flat pattern into the round; would the repeats still work with seam stitches omitted? Would the rib work with less stitches?

I also hadn't thought about how exactly a chart with RS and WS works when there is no longer a WS ...

I thought about all of this in the hour before the opening ceremony. Fortunately Ravelry came to my rescue!

To convert a flat cable chart to the round is easier than I thought. The RS will have any cable crossing 'stuff' and the RS is just worked as is.

The WS usually has chart symbols like 'P on WS, K on RS' - so you just pretend that your WS is a RS, and follow the RS stitches instead. i.e. Knit where it says purl and vice versa.

I'm planning on posting each night at around 9pm with my progress over the next 17 days. Let the games begin!

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Twilley's Freedom Spirit VestTop

Taa-daa! Finally a break in the rain to take some pics of the finished Twilley's Freedom Spirit Vest Top.

I modified the pattern to knit in the round, which was quite a mathematical feat for me. To remember where it says 'dec 1 stitch either end every x rows, x number or times (76 stitches)' that it should be 74 stitches, because I had to omit 2 stitches for the seams ...

(I breathed in ALOT for the shot above ...)

I think the decreases worked really well.

I had a slight problem with the neck decreases because I decided that 'dec 1 st at neck edge every 4 rows' meant every right side row only. Why I decided this I have no idea, but it meant the decreases were spread over 8 rows instead of 4.

I just overlapped the fabric at the shoulders before seaming, and no-one can tell but me...

So that's me. Ravelympics are tomorrow!

Luna Moth - not finished. Pinwheel sweater - not finished. Ah well!

Saturday, August 02, 2008

the clock is ticking ...

Some maths ...

The Beijing Olympics is 6 days, 4 hours and 16 minutes away.

There are 34 rows to go on the Luna Moth Shawl.

Purl rows take an average of 16 minutes.

Lace pattern rows take an average of 20 minutes.

There are 17 purl rows, and 17 lace pattern rows to go (plus a cast off row)

That's 9 hours 42 minutes of knitting to go.

Which doesn't seem much in comparison with the time I have until the start of the Olympics, but I will be spending a good proportion of time working full-time, sleeping, commuting etc. ... I think it's probably best if I find time by avoiding housework.

A little more maths; the workings of the Honeycomb vest. I'm just desperate to cast on a fresh project at the moment! It's a real struggle not to.

Our resident garden fox seems less concerned with time and how to fit it all in ...

This was him last night, taking a brief interest in what the weird humans behind the glass were doing, before settling down for a rest in the sun.

Photos by the boy.