Friday, July 26, 2013

Octopus fun and vacation plans.

After facing several knitting and yarn issues recently, I've decided to go for a fun quick demi octopus. I wanted to give the pattern a try for a while. I love how it turned out. You can also notice it turned out huge! I was thinking about sewing it on a hat but it's way too big. Should have made it in sock yarn.

demi octopus applique

So now I'm considering using it on the blue skirt I'm crocheting.

blue crochet skirt with octopus

This could be fun! Not taking that on vacation with me as it's pretty bulky, so I have time to think it over. What's going to be in my luggage? My vest in progress. I figured out a way to make the fair-isle chart work.

red knitted vest fire colors

Not sure I'll blog from vacation, I'll probably see you again in about 10 days... with hopefully not too much progress on this vest (because the "too much" would mean rainy vacation or failure and hours stuck in the middle of nowhere)!!!

Tuesday, July 23, 2013


Sometimes things simply don't want to go smoothly. Remember the yarn disaster? I made it. It literally took me hours to wind a ball without cutting into the yarn. I finished while waiting for Royal Baby news last night. I'm usually not into celebrity stuff but I must confess I got hit by the Royal Baby fever. Anyways, here's the yarn. I played with it so long my eargerness to cast on has vanished. The yarn is now back in a box, shawl will be knitted later.

purple and pink bamboo lace weight yarn

I've made no progress on my Fair Play vest. Not only because I was busy detangling yarn. I found out the written explanations and the chart of the fair-isle don't match. I wrote the publisher and contacted the designer with the hope to sort it out despite the summer holidays time. If not I'll have to improvise... or give up and frog the ribbing but I don't want to consider this second option yet.

So I took the decision to start another crochet skirt. Easy and quick (J / 6 mm hook). Right what I need now. I'm using Drops Muskat Soft yarn, love it, it's so soft and has great colors. When I entered my project into the Ravelry database I found out it's now discontinued. Too bad I have only 1 more color in my stash.

blue crochet skirt in progress

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Easy crochet summer skirt tutorial.

This weekend, between 2 sessions of yarn detangling, I finished my linen skirt. Remember the one I told you a long time ago? Picture should show you something familiar...

linen crochet skirt free pattern

It took me much longer than I thought it would (you know all that single crochet!). I love it so much I started another one in the same style right away. With heavier yarn and a larger hook for Fall weather. I'll tell you about it in another post.

Now if you'd like to crochet yours you can find a FREE TUTORIAL ON RAVELRY. It's more a tutorial than a proper pattern. Good side of it: it's completely adjustable!

Guess what I'll do tonight? Yes! Detangle more yarn.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Yarn disaster: let's stay zen!

I was excited to wind my skein of bamboo lace yarn. Probably way too excited. Cut the loop open, dropped the skein, walked in the big loop... And it ended completely tangled. Over 1000 yards of cobweb lace mess. Rubbish bin is not an option: it's yarn from a dear friend and it'll make a shawl in the most perfect shades for me.

First I thought I'd managed to avoid the worse...

winding tangled yarn bamboo lace


That's how it looks like when watching closely.

tangled lace weight yarn

Here we go. Long evening of detangling. Good music. Comfy chair. And patience.

tangled bamboo yarn

I went from that...

winding bamboo lace weight yarn

... to that in... hmmm... I can't remember how long, actually I prefer not to watch the clock.

lace weight yarn detangle

This is only about 20% of the skein. I think there are going to be many more detangling sessions in the coming days. At least bamboo doesn't suffer from too much handling.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Skirt, yarn treat and new vest.

As I told you I'd do, I took my linen skirt out of hibernation. I alternate stitches now. It goes really fast and it's entertaining. If it turns out fine, I'll post a tutorial. It's mostly improvised-as-I-go but I took notes for each step so I can share it with you. So far it fits!

green crochet lace skirt

I also casted on a vest. I had to frog 2 times because I had twists. I'm knitting the body in the round to underarms. Decision went for Fair Play first (thank you for your comments everyone!). Why? It's hot those days and cotton yarn is the perfect fiber. Fire colors it'll be made of!

knitted ribbing vest

To finish for today, eye candy in the mailbox... 100% bamboo cobweb yarn. Such a big fan of those colors!

purple cobweb yarn

I'll tell you more about it when I've turned it into a shawl!

Monday, July 15, 2013

Let's decide together!

I'm currently (madly) crocheting my linen skirt. It comes along really nice. Sadly I don't have my camera with me. I'm staying with friends tonight and if I blog it's because I want to test blogging from an IPad. I have nothing else on the needles right now. Yes you read well: only 1 lonely WIP.

This means I can start planning my next project!

I hesitate between 2 vest patterns:

- Fair play: This one I plan in cotton. It's knitted completely flat. My plan: knit it in the round to underarms then flat.

- A Great Britsh Knit: This one I plan in warm winter yarn. It's knitted completely in the round with steeks. My plan: knit it in the round to underarms then flat. Far too much of a chicken to cut into my knitting.

Enough said (I miss the keyboard of my good old netbook, I really do).

Now get those comments in and help me choose between 3 options!
1. Fair play first.
2. A Great British Knit first.
3. Cast on both, there are no other WIPs!

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Colovaria shawl pattern.

I love to go to my knitting group. We're a chatty bunch of women. This means you have to take a project you don't have to count all the time with you.

Those last weeks I've been shawl knitting. A striped triangular shawlette and probably the first larger Christmas present to be finished. I used some soft hand dyed fingering weight yarn from Quo Vadis to make it: it's very soft and completely animal friendly.

You can get the pattern from Ravelry: Colovaria Shawl and there's even a 20% discount until July 21, enjoy!

knit striped shawlette quo vadis vegan yarns

The body is made of stockinette and garter stitch...

vegan yarn knit striped shawl

... the border with elongated garter stitch, a very easy technique detailed in the pattern.

And now I have some good news for you: my "WIPs stash" is down to 1 project (this crochet skirt I hesitated about how to make it look like)... I promise I'll finish it before casting on something new, I made good progress on it lately.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Cassette tape phone cozy.

Before getting my linen skirt in progress out of hibernation after a month of deep hesitation about how lacy I wanted the bottom part to be I knitted a brand new cozy for my phone. The old one was in a really poor shape. I had a crush on the Remember when? pattern from the Simply Knitting issue that came in the mail last week.

simply knitting 109 summer 2013

I had to change the shape a little as my phone is rather slim compared to the most recent ones and I also decided to make it reversible on both sides reversing the chart for the back so it looks like a real cassette tape.

 retro audiocassette phone cozy knitting

The fit is perfect.

remember when cassette tape knit phone cozy

I'm happy: my intarsia is pretty clean and the worse part is behind.

I can't imagine knitting a sweater sized item with that many small intarsia areas.

Wish you all a great weekend!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Heatwave hippo eats ice cream!

Last week, while my Doctor Who scarf was blocking I started to knit a Heatwave Hippo from the June issue of Simply Knitting (please respect copyright and don't ask me for the pattern, the back issue is still available here). Excepted the light grey I decided to use some leftovers from the scarf because my leftovers bag is brimming over. As usual with Alan Dart patterns, there are many pieces to put together but surprisingly less than for many other of his patterns.

I made the feet following the sitting option to save space for more stuffies on my shelf.

alan dart heatwave hippo knitted toy

As you can see I made her a crochet cone of ice cream. You can find the pattern for free here. Refreshments are welcome in the hot summer. I chose a black sesame flavor I ate once at a Japanese restaurant. There was a Hufflepuff pride challenge going on in the HPKCHC so black and yellow project it had to be!

Can't resist to post another picture from the side...

knitted hippo from alan dart pattern

Monday, July 8, 2013

Summerish instant gratification crochet.

Looks like summer is here for good. It's been sunny and warm the whole weekend and it's supposed to last for at least another week. On Sunday afternoon I took my goddaughter and her twin sister to the park.

I managed to take a picture of the wallaby eating leaves (this guy usually hides, lucky day!).

wallaby parc de l'orangerie strasbourg

We also saw cute baby ducks...

baby ducks and mom

... and baby swans (actually not that baby anymore but I never took my camera when they were wee hatchlings).

swans  cygnes parc de l'orangerie strasbourg

And while the girls had fun at the playground I took my hook out and made a quick bath puff. Removed the last row as I took a J hook and aran weight yarn. This took only half an hour to finish. Love instant gratification projects from time to time.

crochet bath puff

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Doctor Who Scarf is finished!

knit doctor who scarfIt's done. All done. Blocked and tasseled properly.

This gigantic scarf reaches my heels and is going to keep me warm next winter (I hope it'll spend some time in the cupboard and I won't have to take it out too early though).

I remind you I used this pattern with sports weight yarn. I made the Season 12 one, the longest with all portions. It used up about 1050 yards. Know that the yardage in the pattern is very accurate but doesn't include the tassels: good I had an extra ball of grey (purchased to make a toy but there's enough left for that). It's thick and huge enough despite a gauge a bit smaller than the one suggested. It doesn't need to clean the floor behind me.

It's totally beginner level: you only need to know how to cast on, knit and cast off: there's not even a purl stitch. The less fun side is that it can quickly get pretty boring to knit. Good there are stripes to keep it entertaining (and dvds and knitting group meetings!).

And the best suprise is that my scarf is totally wearable not as disproportionate and oversized as I feared it would be at all: I love long scarves you can wrap 2 several times around your neck.

doctor who scarf knitted

OK, I bet with a friend I'd post some crazy happy dance pictures with my scarf... I don't fear the riddikulus spell. Would I have knitted this mad scarf if I did? Surely not!

fun doctor who scarf picture

See you soon with some small projects I have planned before starting the next 1000+ yards item!

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Arania Exumai Hat pattern.

Arania Exumai Hat pattern.

After the Potions collection, I've decided to start a new one based on Charms and spells.

The first pattern of this series is a hat for all the spider lovers out there!

It’s a beanie shaped hat named after the charm from the Harry Potter books used to blast back spiders.

The pattern contains detailed written instructions for shaping, the colorwork pattern is charted only. It comes in 3 different sizes from teen to large adult.

You can get it on Ravelry with a 20% off launching offer until July 13, 2013 (enter coupon code SPELL1 when checking out):

Arania Exumai Hat

Note: all the technical info is listed on the pattern page linked above.

The sample in the picture is going to Octobre Rose, a local charity collecting hats for women with breast cancer.

And before showing you some more pictures, let me wish all Americans a happy 4th of July!

knit spider hat

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Doctor Who Scarf: Tassels!

It was tasseling time yesterday evening.

doctor who scarf tasseling

And my scarf is now finished: more pictures as soon it's blocked. I won't be home on Thurday and Friday so I'll do it then. This is going to take all the space on my floor and I'd rather not have to turn around it until it's dry (it's no lace weight so it will take a couple of days).

Monday, July 1, 2013

Pink shrug is finished!

Finally! Can't remember how many times I told you about progress on my Garter Stitch Circular Shrug. But today, 1550 yards of garter stitch in sports weight yarn later (mad I know), is the last time I'll blog about it. I absolutely love how it turned out.

lea bronnenkant with pink knit shrug

For HPKCHC players on Ravelry, this was my Care of Magical Creatures OWL. Inspired by the colors of a magic piglet (a zebra-striped one!). And it'sgoing to be a whole lot of points for my badger friends from Hufflepuff. Without the game I'm actually not sure this project wouldn't hibernate right now.

What's planned tonight? Cutting yarn for Doctor Who Scarf tassels. I have a bad feeling about the dark grey. The yardage on the pattern is very accurate... but doesn't include the tassels. According to my stash recordings on Ravelry there's another ball somewhere in my boxes. Different dye lot for tassels won't matter.