Saturday, 25 June 2011

Callooh! Callay! (s)He chortled in his joy.

Yes, I am chortling in my joy as my raise at work finally came through.  Even better, it is backdated to 1 March so I should get a nice pot of money in July to pay for my quilting frame.  In celebration, I took my newly minted letter from HR to the John Lewis sale, where I bought a sweater's worth of Rowan All Seasons Cotton in Shell Pink at about half price.  There wasn't as much quantity of yarn on sale, but there was a good selection of types of yarn and I had a good fondle.  I also wandered the womenswear floor and came home with a celebratory cardigan, t-shirt and two summer tops from my newly discovered new favourite brand 'White Stuff' which does vintage-look fabric designs.  There were a number of half-price pattern books as well, and I picked up "Rowan Classic Heartland" featuring designs by Martin Storey in Silky Tweed.  I don't usually like his designs but there are some nice classics in this book.

Speaking of books, I also picked up a discounted copy of "Country Weekend Knits - 25 classic patterns for timeless knitwear" by Madeline Weston at a bookshop in London last week.  There are some really nice things in it.  Each chapter, 'Ganseys', 'Fair Isle', 'Aran', and 'Shetland Lace' starts with a short history of the traditions associated with that type of knitting, then goes on to several patterns updating the stitch patterns to traditional yet modern styles.  I was a bit disappointed that there are no diagrams and several patterns don't even have charts, so it's a bit of a detective game to work out what shape the knit pieces are and I would need to chart out the written instructions so I didn't get lost.  The photography is gorgeous, lots of montages of classic island living, stitch patterns etc.

This week I wore my Liesl Cardigan to work.  It still doesn't have a button, but I felt very elegant in it and it was surprisingly comfortable, very elastic and flexible.  I closed it with a decorative shawl pin.  As usual, my colleagues said nothing, so either they were thinking 'oh my god, how can she be wearing that', or else it looks so normal that it didn't occur to them to say anything.  I would have thought the giant safety pin would attract at least one comment...

I'm halfway along the foot of my Cookie A Sunshine Sock and it's fitting well, and I've sewn on about 2/3rds of the border to my Learn to Knit Afghan - which is starting to look very quilt-like now.

I finished quilting my Sunflower Moda Portugal quilt, my first one using a pantograph.  It went pretty well.  As it turns out, the stitching is pretty invisible, but I was actually getting much better towards the end of the quilt.  I was still having a bit of trouble with one side of the quilt backing feeding slightly faster than the other.  I think it was because my dead bar wasn't exactly parallel to the take up bar.  So I took that off after I finished the quilt, and did some plastic surgery to make it line up better.  Sue suggested that I could replace my tracks with metal strip, which would be a good Plan B if Cotton Patch can't obtain the replacement tracks from Grace in America.  Bet that would be a bit noisier though.  I'm going to load another single quilt and do a different panto on it.

I needed a new brainless knit for telly viewing and knit group.  I had some lovely Knitwitches 'Seriously Gorgeous Swiss Silk with Kid Mohair' that I got on sale at one of the I-knit Weekends.  I've now cast on for the Knit Picks 'City Tweed Drop Stitch Shawl'.  It's quite eay to knit and is showing the yarn off well.  I'm not adding the knit-on fringe, and I think I will try to make it crescent-shaped rather than triangular.

And I knit another ugly cat blanket from acrylic yarn.  It's not blocked yet which is why it's all folding in at the edges.  My plan is to knit them in sets of three, then use the three knitted blankets to 'pay' our way into the Battersea Cats Wing to admire the lovely kitties waiting for new homes (usually you have to donate actual cash to go in as a spectator).

Finally, it's that time of year when you have to look at my spectacular rose bush.  I took these pictures just after a morning rain shower.  These roses are about the size of my hand, just amazing (and even more amazing that they haven't died, in my garden...)

1 comment:

Daisy said...

Your Liesl is looking lovely, and I'm amazed you didn't get a comment (even about the safety pin). Maybe they were all asleep at work?! Beautiful rose too. Mine seem to be crawling with insects...

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