WIP Wednesday :: Tawny Owl ::

Oooh it’s a been a while since I did one of these, but I actually have a work in progress that I can share with you!

Train knitting for a certain little baby being born today :)

Last month Milo and I headed off to Norfolk for a little seaside weekend away, as it happened we choose the perfect weekend for it and the weather was amazing.  The day we headed off a friend of mine went in to hospital to have her baby and I needed a little bit of knitting that would be an easy project to take away with me and would serve as a little gift for the aforementioned baby.  Preferably something that wasn’t a sweater, as I had already knit her a cardigan and being a summer baby there surely can really be only so many sweaters she would need right now.

Bad start-snapped a needle-had to move down to 3
After a quick consultation with twitter, I decided a toy would be the best bet and as it happened I had never knit a toy before.  Before I knew it this gorgeous Tawny Owl by Ella Austin was working its way on to my needles.

Red white and blue... #fmsphotoaday #4
The pattern calls for 4ply yarn in 3 colours, as it happens I so rarely use 4ply my stash had very little to offer, I was also in a super rush to leave when I was hunting through said stash, but as it turns out I managed to find 3 small amounts of yarn in reasonably complimentary colours and correct(ish) weight.

WIP Wednesday :: Tawny Owl...oh so nearly finished. 

This pattern in fab!  I loved working up the body of the owl and managed to get all that you can see here done whilst away that weekend.  Unfortunately since then he has been sitting neglected in a bag, awaiting one wing, a couple of eyes and a couple of feet.  I hope to amend this tonight and Craft Night In.

The pattern is Tawny Owl by Ella Austin available to purchase :: here
My ravelry notes are :: here

You can see lots of other WIP wednesday posts :: here


Vitamin C ::

A couple of weeks ago I took my first trip to Wonderwool, it was all very exciting, but unfortunately I was pretty penniless at the time.  As I couldn’t splurge out on all the stacks of yarn that took my fancy, I decided it best to find a pattern first, then purchase yarn specifically for that purpose.

So I took myself off to Rock & Purl, where I got myself a copy of the lovely Vitamin C.  I then spent the rest of the afternoon hunting out the perfect yarn.

I found myself a gorgeous colourway from Fyberspates and cast on the moment I go home.

As it turned out I didn’t quite have enough yarn for the project, so I had to miss out a couple of rows at the end and I had to cast off pretty tight to avoid running out too soon, but I still love it.

Vitamin C by @rockandpurl knit in @fyberspates vivacious, blocking in the sun

The pattern was a dream to work from, though I did struggle with the dropped stitches (but this is probably because this was my first time) and the yarn is outright gorgeous! The colours are just amazing.

With this pretend springtime we’ve been having it’s been living round my neck since it came off the blocking boards.

Ravelry notes :: here

4KCBWDAY6 a tool to covert ::

Day 6 of knitting and crochet blog week (I appreciate I’m now about 3 weeks late!), and it’s time to think about our favourite tools.

This is super tough for me, there are so many items I simply couldn’t work without.

Saturday night's alright.

Though I’m not particularly fussy when it comes to crochet hooks, honestly any old hook works fine for me, I am more so when it comes to knitting needles, I haven’t tried them all and certainly have yet to work with some of the best, but some of my current favourites are knitpicks interchangeables (they aren’t perfect, they do come unscrewed regularly and I have snapped more than one, but I do like them) my other favourites are a lovely pair of square rosewood needles I purchased on holiday one year in a really sweet knitting shop in Historic Georgetown, South Carolina.  I so rarely knit on these as they are really chunky, but there is something about square needles that seems so right!

However after a chat on the subject for crochet hooks over on twitter a couple of weeks ago, I have been convinced to try out some of the better ones.  Top recommendations were for Clover, both Amour and Soft Touch, though if anyone has any further suggestions I’d love to hear them.

Something I would love to own, but as yet is missing from my crafty collection is a swift.  I hate winding yarn from skeins and really I am not good at it, I will turn a skein in to a knotted, tangled mess,  just looking at it, throw a kitten and a toddler in to the equation and really I’m doomed to spend my life impatiently untangling yarn.

If I really had to choose my most coveted tool, I guess I’d go for my books, I have quite a collection.  I literally could not design without these, my stitch dictionaries are invaluable (Kat Goldin did a fab post on this exact subject a while back which saw me adding a few more staples to my collection!) but also Elizabeth Zimmerman’s ‘Knitting without Tears‘ and Debbie Abrahams ‘Design Your Own Knits in 5 Easy Steps‘ have been fundamental to assisting with my designing.

 Currently my favourite stitch dictionaries are “Harmony” Guide to Crochet Stitches and Complete Book of Crochet Stitch Designs

Oooh nice post...stitch books and shade cards.

I’m also currently awaiting delivery of 63 Crochet Cable Stitches.  

4KCBWDAY4 Colour Review ::

So I got a little bit distracted last week and lost my knitting and crochet blog week mojo.  I’m putting this down to a couple of things, firstly the day 3 theme, really didn’t appeal to me (infographics aren’t really my thing) then I went off on a little Oxford based adventure on day 4, which left me a little worse for wear come day 5, then off I hopped on day 6 to wonderwool (more on that later this week).  But here I am, pretending that today is day 4 again, I’m just going to skip over day 3.

Today the prompt is to think about colour, the kind of colours we love to use and I guess thinking about why it is we love those colours.

This has come at the perfect moment as I’ve been giving my blog itself a little overhaul today and thinking about the colours that best reflect me as a crafter.

My big favourite is purple, it appears a lot, both in my wardrobe and on my yarn shelves.  I’m particularly fond of muted pale shades, but purple in any form is good as far as I’m concerned.

 My second favourite has to be green, again mostly muted shades, turquoise and teal appear high on my wishlist regularly, but having a peek through my wardrobe and accessories, I can tell you it does not frequently make it’s way on to the needles/hook for my personal projects.  I can’t tell you why that is mind.

As a designer colour is something I think about a lot, I spend a lot of time trawling through shadecards attempting to discover the perfect colour in the perfect weight and the perfect yarn content for a particular project, of course I don’t always get my first choice, of yarn or colour when it comes down to the nitty gritty with the magazine/publishing house, so I’ve learnt to be flexible in my choices.  To be honest, though I have my favourites, all colour is pretty good in my book and there certainly aren’t any I really dislike.

Let’s Knit Issue 63 ::

Last week, issue 63 of Let’s Knit magazine hit the shelves, displaying my Jessica Sweater on the cover!

I’m crazy proud of this.  I do love this sweater and really enjoyed knitting it (I do love a bit of colourwork), but I never ever expected it to make the cover.  This is only my second ever knitting pattern and my first pattern published in Let’s Knit.
This is now my third cover in my short designer life time, I cannot believe how far I’ve come in such a short space of time, it just goes to show that if you are really passionate about something and put you all in to it you can do anything you want!

Anyway enough beaming.

Today I shall be knitting colourwork...lots and lots and lots :) 

I love this issue, I realise I say that a lot about magazines, but I really really do.  The theme is vintage, and there are some really cute 50’s inspired sweaters and a great piece on stranded colourwork, if you’ve never attempted it before.