knitting

Still Light Tunic No 2

Almost two years ago I decided to take up the challenge of knitting my first dress in fingering weight yarn. I thought it was going to take forever and I wasn’t sure if it was a good idea, but as it turned out, I loved knitting it and didn’t find it boring at all, despite the amount of stockinette stitch I had to make. This dress had been a little loose, which was fine and I wore it a lot, but I lost some weight since then time and it has gotten too large for me at some point. It’s still safely stored in my wardrobe in case if I get bigger again (and sometimes due to new or increased doses of meds I quickly “grow” one or two sizes very fast, or lose just as much).

The pattern is called Still Light Tunic and it’s designed by Veera Välimäki. It’s really well written, simple, and smart in the way in which the pockets are constructed because yes, this dress has pockets! I absolutely love this detail as so many female clothes, including jeans, suffer from the lack of pockets. The dress is also very comfortable and just perfect for the autumn days, when it can be worn with boots (and a cardigan if necessary, since the sleeves are not full length).

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crochet · general ramblings · knitting · life

New Crochet Along and Changes

Last year I participated in my first CAL – Arizona Blanket. It was fun, I liked working on it in the slow pace of the weekly pattern releases, and I really loved the final result. This blanket now is in my parents home, and my Mum claimed it. The good thing is that it’s machine washable and easy in maintenance, so even if one of their dogs decides to use it as a placemat and drag a bone or jump on it with muddy paws, it’s simple to fix the mess.

I’ve been thinking about making another blanket, for my Father this time – and finally I found the right opportunity when I saw the announcement for a new Scheepjes CAL: the Rozeta Blanket. The pattern is crocheted and incorporates some embroidered elements, and I really like the look of this blanket. The original kits are sold in a number of colour versions and in two types of yarn: acrylic Colour Crafter and the luxury version, 70% Merino Superwash and 30% Polyamide Scheepjes Our Tribe. For me the choice was simple, both because of the price and the yarn content, and I ordered a Colour Crafter kit in the Twilight colourway.

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knitting

My New Little Cardigan

After knitting my Citrus Dream cardigan last month, I knew that I was going to knit it again, with slightly tighter gauge than before, and in a more neutral colours. I find the shape of this design perfect for a lightweight, early autumn or spring cardigan, with larger neck opening and shorter sleeves that allow to easily adjust to the weather by adding a scarf and longer gloves if it gets colder.

This time I used Malabrigo Sock yarn in Piedras colourway, a nice, soft merino yarn in the shades of brown, green, and some hints of purple. I hesitated between three different colour options for the bands and cuffs: orange, mustard and light green. I liked each version, but ultimately decided to stick with the initial plan of knitting in more “neutral” shades, so I used some of the yarn bought at Wollinn – Live or Dye fingering merino in pale, muted green.

I think the result is great, and the colour combination reminds me of an autumn beech forest, with brown beech and green spruce and fir – exactly the kind of forest that is typical for the lower parts of the mountains close to my home in Poland.

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knitting

Comfortable Socks

So autumn is officially here, and it shows. The trees are turning red, brown and gold; the days are shorter, and the temperatures dropped. I like this time of the year, it’s my favourite; at least until the cold and rainy days of November start. I’m trying to take the opportunity of sunny days and go for walks in my neighbourhood, and I keep knitting to prepare myself for the colder half of the year.

Sometimes the walks are a good opportunity to make new friends:

And when I’m at home, I can admire my cats getting ready for winter, as they sleep longer and stopped shedding as much as during the summer.

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general ramblings · knitting · life

Silver Blossom Tee No. 2

First of all, I’d like to thank you all for your kind words under my previous post. Your encouragement and support means a lot!

I’m still working on digging myself out of the black hole and it gets better every day. I’m functional again, resumed my regular workouts, and they always help keep my mood up. I also keep knitting a lot and that’s why I already have another sweater to share here.

Remember the Silver Blossom Tee I’ve knitted in July for my Mum? Well, I decided to knit it again, this time in a winter version. I had a sweater worth of Drops Sky in my stash. It’s a super soft and light alpaca yarn that I’d bought during the last year’s Drops Alpaca Party. I didn’t have any specific plans for it, I just took the opportunity of a reduced price, because this yarn is really wonderful and so pleasant to work with. I’d used it in the past for my Mint Tulip Skirt and despite my worries that it might not survive too long (as the yarn is so delicate and seems very fragile), it’s still fine and looks well after being worn a lot during the last winter. I decided that Drops Sky will work well with this pattern, but I wanted to knit longer sleeves. I actually hesitated between full length or elbow-length, and eventually compromised with 3/4 sleeves!

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knitting

One Day Project

A quick update about a quick project – a new winter hat!

It took a day (well, not a full day really, I think maybe 2-3 hours total – a little bit in the morning, and the rest in the afternoon), I enjoyed it, and I like the new hat. Just good things!

I followed a pattern called Finlandia by Paige Buursma, and I suppose that it owes its name to the lacy Spruce trees repeated in three rounds from the rib to the crown, just like in Finland’s boreal forests. I liked it, in Dublin winters I don’t need very thick head protection, so adding these lacy elements makes the hat more suitable here. It was also perfect for that one lonely skein of grey Malabrigo Rios that’s been in my stash since forever. It’s going to match my lacy crochet shawl that I use as a scarf in winter. Last spring I bought a red coat on the seasonal sale, and I can already see it all together looking well and feeling comfy.

Nothing like instant gratification from a quick and enjoyable project!

And to finish this short post, just a sneak peek at my new stitch markers. I didn’t really need them, but I wanted something silly and cute to cheer me up, and what’s better than stitch markers with tiny rubber ducks, colourful macarons and come buttered crumpets with a cup of tea? They’re from my most favourite Etsy store. And indeed, it worked!

The project at the top is another attempt to improve my mood, and I’ve been enjoying knitting it so far. But I’ll reveal more in the next post 🙂

knitting

Finished project: Kalaloch Pullover

I made it! My Kalaloch Pullover is ready and I’m really happy with how it turned out. I wasn’t sure till the very end if it would really fit me, with its funny short sleeves (just look above) and its wide circular yoke – it’s only at the end when the decreases are really made (it’s knitted bottom up) and suddenly the yoke starts looking like it should. But even with all those doubts I persisted and now I have this awesome loose fitting sweater that I’m going to wear as soon as autumn starts (which means soon!).

If I look awkward and tired, it’s because that’s exactly how I feel. But also happy because of the new sweater 😉
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general ramblings · knitting

I’m still knitting…

…just not as much as I’d like to.

I’m buried in work and stressed out, but I can already see the light at the end of the tunnel month, when the workload should get a little more manageable, and I hope to get some “me” time again.

I manage to knit a few rows of my Kalaloch Pullover each day, and that’s about that, but even with such low speed, it slowly starts looking like a pullover more than like a shapeless blob. It’s really oversized, and the construction is particularly interesting, as the actual sleeves are very short, and about half of their length is in fact the oversized yoke (if it even should be still called a yoke?). Everything is knitted from the bottom, and sleeves are attached to the body at the start of the yoke and later worked together with the body. The armhole openings are grafted with Kitchener’s stitch at the end.

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cats · knitting

Sparkle and Shine

It seems that summer is finally in Ireland, after a very chilly and wet June (and a bonus cold for me, because who doesn’t want to get back to working full time with a runny nose and a fever, right?!). It’s a bit warmer and more sunny, and only rains on some days, which is a huge progress in comparison to June. Days are busy, I’m starting to feel more secure in my new duties at work, and everything is going fine – well, almost everything. Ciri has a minor inflammation in her eye (second time now), and following the vet’s advice, I keep applying chamomile extract twice a day on her eye area – just have to be careful not to let her swallow it as it may be toxic for cats when ingested. I really don’t want to bring her to the vet because those visits are extremely stressful for her and I’m worried she might get another stress-related UTI, so I’m happy to see that a chamomile home remedy seems to be doing the job. Even though she hates the application and I’m pretty sure she’s never going to trust me again!

My most recent knitting project has been the Kalaloch Pullover from the summer issue of Interweave Knits. I knew I wanted to knit it even before I received my issue of Interweave Knits, as soon as I saw the photos on Ravelry. I love this very oversized, relaxed sweater so much! But since it’s so oversized (I’m knitting size 48” whereas I normally wear 36” or 38”), and knitted with fingering yarn, it’s going to take forever to finish it. It took me days to knit the first 15 cm of plain stockinette stitch, and it’s definitely going to slow down even more when I get to the textured part… but before I get to it, I’m taking a forced break, because I broke my needle knitting it. Turns out that a wooden needle which is only 3 mm wide is just not very durable. Luckily it wasn’t a part of my new set, so all I had to do was order a new one online (and it’s aluminum this time) and wait for it to arrive.

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