Wednesday, 29 December 2010
'Oh noes!' said I. And I'm sure that's what you're thinking too.
So the little bed bug is on hold for the time being. The rash has gone away but my skin in still sore and scaly. Is it worth turning into a lizard woman for some awesomely cool knitting ... I'm not sure yet.
Thursday, 23 December 2010
You know how people say that the devil’s greatest feat was convincing the world he didn’t exist? Well, Thomas’ greatest feat is convincing the world that he is just a congenial, friendly tank engine. He isn’t. I’m disturbed that more people aren’t suitably freaked out by him. He is a train with a face!
I know, I know, there are loads of other kid’s programmes where vehicles have faces. But think about it, the trains in Chuggington, the car in Brum, even the vehicles in Engie Bengy and to a certain extent, Finlay the Fire Engine, all make use of the features of said vehicle to create a face. Windows are eyes, headlights can be a nose and natural joins in bodywork can be used as a mouth.
Thomas is a train with a HUMAN FACE! That’s horrific! Where did he get the human face?? Whay haven't parents risen up in outrage about this monstrosity - I mean, they kick up a fuss about everything else, from disabled t.v presenters to bums on X-factor.
It's my belief that the Fat Controller is the sinister figure behind this train animating process. He must be an insane psychopathic killer who hunts down hobos and steals their faces before fixing them onto the bodywork of some poor steam engine like a crazed stop-motion Dr. Frankenstein. No one notices the missing hobos, the island of Sodor is free of riff-raff and it would explain the constant stream of new tank engines for merchandising purposes. Notice the deathly grey pallor of Thomas’ face? That can’t be healthy.
Unfortunately my sons love him and I don't think the above rant makes for good parenting when it's aimed at wide eyed two year olds
Saturday, 11 December 2010
Anywho, today I received a parcel from the states which was uber-exciting! I have not seen this yarn anywhere in the UK and although postage from the US is a little expensive, I had to get some.
That's right - this is glow in the dark yarn!! How awesome is that?! I have a mochimochiland pattern that I'm going to knit with this. I'm making glow in the dark bed bug toys for my twins' bedroom. Can't wait to get started. I just hope it knits decently as sometimes novelty wool can be a bit iffy. But now that we're no longer snowed in, I don't have the luxury of indulging my knitting habit and my mum has requested a set of the snowmen from my last post so who knows when I'll get round to it :(
Monday, 6 December 2010
The projects on this site are exactly my kind of thing - I've always loved Japanese culture and especially all things kawaii (that's 'cute' to you and me) and with patterns costing only $5, how could I resist a treat or two?!
In fact, the project I'm sharing today only cost $2 and all of the yarn I used were just scraps lying around the bottom of my knitting bag with no purpose, so it was a great, thrifty little job.
These guys took no time at all to knit up - two nights in front of the tv and they were done. I still have plenty of yarn left for loads more. They were originally meant to be much smaller, but I didn't have the right size needles - I used 3.75mm instead of 2.75mm. But I think if I had made them much smaller, they wouldn't have been manageable for me. At the moment they are hiding all over my mantelpiece as I think they have mischevious personalities! But I could just as easily add thread to their tops and use them as tree decorations.
If you like knitting projects that are a little funky and definitely unique you should pop over to mochimochiland and take a look.
Tuesday, 30 November 2010
It's not clear in the photos, but they were little earflap hats, and the pattern I used was the only one I could find that knitted the hats in the round all in one go, earflaps included. With super chunky wool they were really quick and easy. Unfortunately, I found the pattern online, printed it off and have since lost it. And no, I haven't even the faintest idea of what site I found it on. I'm sure I'll find another pattern that's just as good for next years hats, but the loss of this one still smarts a little.
PS: For anyone who remembered the cinderella-like destiny of the little red hat featured in my second ever post, I have sad news. It doesn't fit Oliver either. It seems that all of my children have very large heads. Poor little hat :(
Friday, 27 August 2010
Yesterday was spent frantically cleaning. And before you all yell 'nesting!', I'm usually quite anal about cleaning anyway, and yesterday was the first day I had any energy for about a week. I'm quite sore for it today though, and although I can feel some strange period-like cramps, I'm not entirely sure that that isn't because of all the hard work yesterday. So let's not count our chickens just yet!
Fingers crossed it'll be soon though!
Thursday, 19 August 2010
Thursday, 5 August 2010
Sunday, 1 August 2010
And finally, a massive congratulations to the boyfriend who got a new job this weekend!!! He'd been made redundant last Christmas and since then I think unemployment was gradually taking it's toll on him. I couldn't be more proud!
Friday, 23 July 2010
Thursday, 15 July 2010
Sorry for the poor photo. It was hastily taken last night before the whole thing was parceled up. Hopefully I'll soon have one of the man himself wearing it. I'm actually really proud that I managed the button holes and collar as it was something I've never attempted before. I even made a little tag for it, with a logo and everything - that's right, you're witnessing the creation of a brand! Now, if only I could find enough people willing to wait great lengths of time for a slightly mis-shapen jumper which they would happily pay for, I'd have my very own cottage industry!
Sunday, 11 July 2010
I prefer to knit in decent wool or cotton rather than acrylics or blends, especially if an item is a gift, as this particular jumper is. The price of the yarn usually reflects it's 'luxury' status, and I am usually happy to pay the extra cost. However, this jumper was my first knitting project using Debbie Bliss branded yarns and I have to say, I am not impressed. I usually stick to Rowan as I love their milk cottons for knitting soft baby items. However, my local wool shop (which is a bit of an overly grand way of putting it, as it is actually just the wool department of John Lewis) had Debbie Bliss Luxury Donegal Aran Tweed yarn in the exact colour that I knew this person would love. So I bought it.
And the problems began. I found that the yarn had random bits of twig and straw wound in the strands, which would have made for one scratchy jumper. I think I've maanged to catch all of the stray bits, but this was a pretty common issue over 10 balls of yarn, so not exaclty an isolated incident. Then, despite being careful to buy from the same dye lot number, two of my balls had bright purple threads in places. I know a tweed is a mish mash of colours, but beige and browns are acceptable, not purple. There were also random knots along the length of the yarn and in places it was obvious that the strand had snapped and been hastily, and crudely, knotted together by, I can only assume, the manufacturer.
But the final straw came last night as I was carefully seaming the shoulders. The yarn kept simply snapping! I was not impressed at having to unpick several inches of yarn to properly weave it in. With the cost of wool, even acrylics and man-made ones, reaching ridiculous rates, it seems that it is no longer cheaper to knit your own things. And with shoddy, so-called designer brands not delivering the promised finish, how do we know which to avoid?
Oh, and the response from a 'representative' of Debbie Bliss when I complained? Basically, because the yarn is made from natural fibres and not man-made, there will be weaker spots and flaws in the yarn. Deal with it.
I'm seriously unimpressed.
Right, rant over! Normal service will now be resumed!!
Sunday, 4 July 2010
This one, thrillingly, is about cat pee.
We have two cats - one very old and one very young. And what do the very old and very young of any species have in common? Poor bladder control.
Actually, now I think about it, these two cats may actually have superb bladder control. It's the only way to explain how they can saunter past the litter tray, down the stairs, into the bathroom and pee on my bath mats. That's right - I can no longer have bath mats in my house because one, or both, of these cats has a secret vendetta against me.
It started, innocently enough, with the very old cat. If I left clothes lying on the floor next to the bed, I would wake up to find them soaked in cat pee. Maybe she's trying to tell me to tidy up - although my dear other half has just about all of his wardrobe stored on the floor on his side and it all stays bone dry! I knew it was her because we were between kittens at the time - due to our poor kitten screening abilities we always end up with suicidally stupid little cats and sadly, one met a premature end under a car. My first thought was 'oh, poor thing, she can't make it downstairs to the littler tray in time,' and being that she is elderly, we bought and filled an upstairs tray to save her the embarassment of having to pee on clothing.
But, one night I woke up to find her sitting on my jeans, staring at me and peeing with gay abandon! (I assume it was gay abandon - cat expressions are hard to read.) That was when I became convinced that she hated me. I had moved in and usurped her as queen of her suburban, 3 bed, semi-detached castle. Unfortunately, boyfriend is in some kind of hypnotic, feline thrall to this particular cat, and no amount of bitching from me could make him see this as a problem. Until she peed on some comics.
Mysteriously, the guerilla peeing soon stopped, and life went back to normal. Until the bath mats. And now that we have a new furry friend with a death wish I have no idea who is responsible. There are also suspiciously smelly spots on the hall carpet. My house always smells of cat pee, which is deeply embarassing to me - though not to the boyfriend, who doesn't seem to notice this.
This whole saga has made me a little more unhinged than usual, so caught up am I in trying to catch the furry culprit. But they two of them are wily buggers - they once even managed to come into the bathroom while I was showering and pee on the clothes I had just taken off. I didn't even notice. This means war.
So, until this pee bandit is apprehended, there is a high likelihood of sustaining a head injury while showering at my house. Just remember, that as your face hurtles towards the tasteful green tiling, to curse the damn cats. I accept no responsiblity for their mayhem.
Sunday, 20 June 2010
And this is the ribbing on the front.
Tuesday, 8 June 2010
After knitting nifty little i-cords to thread through their jackets, I proudly hung up their winter clothes in the hall. This proved to be a massive mistake. Several days later, a mitten became detached from it's i-cord. Just shoddy sewing, right?
Then, the following week, I noticed chubby little baby fingers poking through the top of my lovingly crafted mittens. Oh no! A frantic DIY job in the street and some unskilled repairs when we got home seemed to solve the problem.
Just when I was beginning to lament the durability of my first ever pair of mittens, the mystery was solved. One evening I heard a stange scratching in the hallway and when I plucked up enough courage to stick my head round the door, I was confronted with our newest kitten attacking the dangling mittens with gusto!
The sad, shabby little mittens managed to last the winter, but the knitting destroyer is still at large. This week she managed to find the previously mentioned jumper and chew through my working yarn - this means war!!
Saturday, 5 June 2010
I'm knitting said jumper for an unlucky family member's birthday which is 6 weeks from now. Plenty of time. Or is it? So far I have knitted a third of the back in a week. Not great :(
I'm using Debbie Bliss Donegal Luxury Aran Tweed Yarn in colours 03 and 04 and this pattern. I'm leaving out the fairisle pattern as I don't think the recipient of this jumper will like that - and also I'm lousy at that type of thing. I can't handle too many colours at once!
So, I'll be back with an update sometime next weekend, and hopefully I will have completed the back - keep everything crossed for me!
Wednesday, 2 June 2010
The fly in the ointment was my sons' enormous heads. I'm not kidding. These kids are small, but their noggins are massive!
The resulting little red hat just wouldn't fit!! I was devastated. It took me quite a while to knit it on two needles and then sew it up afterwards (which is my biggest pet hate). This was before I had learned to knit in the round.
And it's not half bad.
Poor little rejected hat! It now sits forlornly at the bottom of my knitting bag. But with a new baby due in August, who knows! Maybe he won't be cursed with a giant head and he can help this little hat fulfill it's destiny.
So there you go, sometimes despite no dropped stitches, pattern mistakes or loose threads, you can still create a bit of a disaster.
Can you do better? The pattern for this hat is here.
Other cute hats I should've used, but didn't:
There are some truly wonderful knitting blogs out there, with breathtaking work on them. Some people are natural knitters and seem to have the knack - I am not one of them. And maybe you're not either. Maybe you too just muddle through, hoping that it will all come right in the end. Maybe you are intimidated by all the fantastic knitters out there, and a little jealous too.
This is a support group. My name is Emma and I am a mediocre knitter. Let the healing begin.