Wednesday, 25 February 2015

Woolly News: February 2015

February has been a busy knitting month with several projects finished! I am very happy to say that I have finished knitting my Vivid blanket and they are blocking as I type!  It is for our new niece although I want to keep it for myself now!!  I am such a bad auntie!!! 

At the end of January I cast off my Kunye shawl which I made as part of The Golden Skein's 1st birthday celebrations.  Towards the end it was slow going as the rows were really long and I was using the smallest crochet hook I have ever seen for the beading.  It looks and feels very glamorous.  The plan is to wear it at the Edinburgh Yarn Festival  Ca-Baa-Ret party in March.

Also started in December and finished this month, my Rosthwaite socks by Louise Tilbrook.  I really enjoyed knitting these and mastered my first afterthought heel!!  I am definitely an afterthought heel convert.  I am itching to cast on some new socks but I have promised Mr D that I will get his second sock started........soon.

Enabled by fellow Edinburgh Yarn Festival attendees I started my Owls Jumper by Kate Davies.  I have wanted to knit myself one for ages so I didn't need much encouragement!   I am using New Lanark Chunky which I bought when we stayed at the mill last November.  I have finished the main body section and arm number one. The plan is for it to be part of my Edinburgh Yarn Festival wardrobe!

Last but no means least my best friend and cast on the Lapsang hat by Clare Devine.  We decided we would have matching hats for Edinburgh (in pattern only).  I rummaged in my stash and picked out some Texere Olympia I bought at Yarndale in 2013.  I have one skien left so I plan to knit the matching cowl. 
As you can tell I am super excited about going to Edinburgh next month!  We are going for the weekend so plenty of time for wool purchases, chatting to fellow knitters in the Podcast Lounge and learning new skills (I am booked on Hazel Tindall's Fair Isle Class). Are you going to Edinburgh?  Let me know!  If you are not able to make it I will tell you about it on my return. 

Sunday, 22 February 2015

Old Crochet Doilies

All of the dollies together
I want to share these photos with you all.  They are crochet doilies which belonged to Mr D's Gran who sadly passed away just after Christmas.  

Detail of table runner

I feel very honoured to have them in our home.  As far as we know Gran didn't make them herself (she was a keen knitter, sewed and embroidered).  We think they may have been made
by my father in laws auntie. 

Whoever made them must have loved to crochet.  The stitches in some of them are so tiny and the yarn so thin.  The table runner alone but have taken many hours of work to create something of that size and detail (there are 80 squares).  

The tiny stitches 

Wednesday, 4 February 2015

The Year in Books: February 2015

It was great to join with Laura and other like minded folks in the #theyearinbooks Twitter chat last month. Laura posed some thought provoking and at times pretty tough questions and the hour flew by.
In January I finished Robert Harris's An Officer and a Spy. I found this book really interesting and loved reading it.  As I mentioned last month the book tells the story of the Dreyfus Affair. While I have not had the opportunity to fully compare the novel to the facts I understand that it largely adheres to the truth. It is a pretty shocking story including the lengths people would go to in the belief they had acted correctly and how others attempt to put things right. If you like your history novels or just fancy trying something different that I heartedly recommend An Officer and a Spy.

Grayson Perry Playing in the Gallery coverI have also been reading a knitting pattern book. To non knitters this will be of no interest so I will keep this brief. I was very lucky to receive Kate Davies new book Yokes (which contains 11 yoke patterns) for Christmas. The first half of the book explores the background and origins of the circular yoke. I found it a fascinating read and learnt so much about the yoke design and the stories of those who designed, made and wore them.

My February read is Grayson Perry's Playing in the Gallery. It is not quite a year since I finished my degree so thought it was about time I started to include some non fiction into my life again! I plan to alternate between non fiction and fiction books this year to get a healthy balance.