21 April 2007


Not much to report on the knitting front, friends - I have about six inches left of the second sleeve to do on raglan road, and then it will just need blocking and sewing up. My thesis writing schedule is having a detrimental effect of my knitting, and no noticeable effect on my thesis. Oh well! Onwards and upwards.

But in the midst of this soulless and lonely work, something bright and cheerful arrived on my doorstep: the yarn for josephina! Such are my powers of indecision that I ended up buying both the Garden Flowers silk/cotton mix and the Empress crochet cotton, on the grounds that I am not, after all, the kind of girl who couldn't possibly find a use for 500g of randomly coloured summer yarn:

600g of Empress Crochet Cotton

375g of Garden Flowers, 70% Silk & 30% Cotton, on 25g spools

Eeeee! So pretty! And also, so utterly tiny: whichever one I use, I will have to double it, which is easy in the case of the Garden Flowers, as I have doubles of all the various colours, but harder in the case of Empress, which will need to be wound onto something else. I think I will look for yarn winders on Ebay.

I am leaning towards Empress for Josephina, and some skinny little cardigan in Garden Flowers, but who can say? Swatches coming right up!

12 April 2007

raglan road

Wandering around Ranelagh and Donnybrook the other evening, we noticed that there were places where the ground was starting to look dry: we've had over a week, I think, of sunny days, and spring is quite definitely in residence. Wool has been put away, and I am dreaming of cotton, linen, viscose and silk. Summer knitting!

I've made a healthy start on the Sirdar Denim cardigan that I mentioned nearly a month ago:

raglan road

The guiding principle of this knit seems to be to avoid seams as far as possible: I've knitted the body in a single piece, and have started one of the sleeves in the round, so the only thing I'll have to sew will be the raglan seams. The lace around the bottom is, er, "borrowed" from Knitty's Soleil, but on a 12 stitch repeat rather than a 10 stitch one.

My gauge is all sorts of wonky: I originally knitted this yarn on 3.75mms, I think, and rather tightly. It's now on 4mm Addi Turbos and very loose, but not quite evenly so. I am hoping that blocking it will work the usual miracle, and I'll have a lovely drapey fabric. Fingers crossed!

Meanwhile, I am looking for yarn for my next project, Josephina:


Named because it will (if I can find the yarn) be a top of many colours. At least five, and possibly six or more. The top piece will made the same way as my doomed Cannibal's Sack Sweater Dress, as a top-down raglan. The "skirt" part will be knitted horizontally using short-rows, so it really swings. I'm going to do it in reverse stocking stitch, using nothing bigger than DK, and possibly 4-ply or smaller.

I'm looking for yarn on Texera, which has many some utternly fabulous yarns for wonderful prices. But. The brightest, most beautiful colours (Good Fortune, Double Top) come in 250g cones and cost £7.20 each, which would mean that I would only be able to do it in two colours. Kilnsey (DK), Monaco (Aran) and Provence (DK) are all cheaper, but the colours just aren't as brilliant.

The best bet might be Garden Flower Silk (70% silk, 30% cotton), but it's tiny, tiny yarn - 1000m to 100g, where DK is around 160m and 4-ply is 340m. On the other hand, if it comes in 25g spools, then I can hold two or even three strands together. Or there's Empress, which is 3ply. What do do, what to do?

03 April 2007


Those of you who follow my lovely glitzing girl's journal will know that she is currently working in the North, and we are a sad bi-national household. This week and next, however, are her vacation, so she is down in Dublin for two whole weeks, and O, it's so great. Our living room on Saturday night was pretty much a perfect image of what our lives are like together:

living one, two, three

That's us, look! Three lots of knitting (one on needles, one blocking, one semi-abandoned), a bottle of wine (empty), a packet of biscuits (empty), a vase of flowers (bought for me), two Macs (overused), many newspapers (mostly read), many mobiles (two UK, two Irish, two German if they happened to be around) and various bags and bits of outerwear. The flat is on the market at the moment, so it is all extremely superficial mess: in fact, as soon as I have posted I should tidy a bit. But that's our life together, right there. Isn't it brilliant?


The blocking on the gold sofa is the fairy knitting, which I haven't finished but decided on a (slightly drunken) whim to block anyway. Since last I posted, I have no new projects of which to boast, but the fairy knitting goes from strength to strength. I've finished shaping the armholes, and have only about four or five repeats of the pattern to do before I can shape the back of the neck and shoulders. However, the blocking has revealed a TRAGEDY:

fairy tragedy!

Somewhere over the past eight months that I've been knitting, I've completely changed my gauge: the back piece that I'm knitting at the moment is much, much looser than the front. The front piece (on the right), has been pinned out very taut and stretched, whilst the back (on the left) has been blocked very casually, just by smoothing the fabric out. And yet, it is still a good inch and a half taller than the front. Oh dear. Oh dear. The back is much nice fabric, but this means that I will have to knit the front all over again. The completion date goes back another six months.