Knit: Fraise

FO: Fraise

Fraise
Pattern | Liliiflora Shawlette by Lily Go
Yarn | Wollmeise “Pure” 100% Merino Superwash in WD Babe
Needles | 4.5mm and 6.0mm circulars

Yay, another completed shawl!

The pattern is another gem by Lily Go and a joy to knit with. It is – as usual – well written and easy to follow. The starting was a bit of a bother as I had to cast on 300 over stitches and I had a false start with my choice of yarn.

The original choice was the same yarn I used for my Narnia shawl – an alpaca yarn I bought from France in a gorgeous shade of raspberry pink. But the yarn gave me a horrible itch and I decided to take a look at my precious Wollmeise stash to see if I could find a suitable colour for this pattern. I wanted something girly yet nothing too “froo-froo” and thus, ended up with this lovely crescent shawl.

I’m enjoying the idea of knitting shawls with fingering weight yarn. The resulting texture makes the pattern really pop, especially things like nupps and cables. And the size is just nice – 19 repeats in order to make full use of the yarn. I finished the shawl with only 10% of the original 150gm skein left to spare which isn’t all that bad. (I’m rather tired of keeping odds and ends, scraps of yarn here and there.)

And yes, while this was on the block, I started another knitting project…which probably explains why it’s been forever since I last updated this blog (or any of my other blogs)!

Ravelry Project Page Ravelry info available here.

FO: Fraise

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Knit: Spring Things Shawl

Spring Things Shawl on the block!

Spring Things Shawl
Pattern | Spring Things by Susan Lawrence
Yarn | Zauberwiese silk lace 600m in Nessie
Needles | 3.75mm circulars

With all the distractions and the shop keeping me occupied, it took me longer than usual to finish this project – but I still manage to finish it! I didn’t have time to take some really decent pictures – maybe I should – so it’s hard to imagine the sheen from the yarn.

I increased the number of repeats in the first part (Chart A) to get as much as I could out of my yarn and luckily too. The shawl didn’t seem all that big after blocking and if I am making this again, I’ll probably add another increase. The nupps were not all that difficult, or maybe I’m getting used to it again. I was actually tempted to replace the nupps with beads but after thinking, beads with kids don’t get along so well…especially SMALL beads. Maybe another time?

The colour is slightly variegated so the pattern didn’t really pop but it still makes for a nice knit. If you can, go for long repeat colourways or semi-solid colours – the pattern would really come through. All in all, a nice knit and nothing to hard on the memory either.

I seem to have caught the lace shawl bug again and after finishing this, I’ve started a new one. More on that another time!

Ravelry Project Page Ravelry info available here.

Spring Things Shawl on the block!

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I’m still around!

WIP: Spring Shawl

I must admit that I’ve been neglecting this blog as well as my parenting one. The shop’s recent V-Day promo has been a hit and I am still thankful even after the craziness has died down. Busy is tiring but it’s a good kind of busy as the hubs says. Very recent inquiries into wholesale stock has also lead me to consider increase my mold size or mold quantity per soaping session (I am tempted to make my own wooden molds so wood craft supplies, anyone?). This year has started off with many blessings and I’m thankful to God for that.

My knitting has taken a backseat the last few days and I only managed to pick it up again yesterday night for two rows before I got “kidnapped” by the kids, especially Noah who loves asking me to look at things, look at his blocks, or play with him. This shawl – made with 100% silk from Germany – is progressing quite well and I hope to have it done before we hit March…I HOPE!

On another front, we are up for our second overseas family vacation! Excitement!

My father-in-law and his wife are coming over tomorrow and then in March, we’ll be meeting up with my sister-in-law and her entire brood in Cambodia!!!! The kids will be flying along with us and it’ll be an exciting time for both Noah and Eva because the kids had such a blast when we were in SG, on the plane and all. Am keeping my fingers crossed for a smooth and happy trip for everyone.

All this vacationing also means that the shop will be busy and this blog will be quiet again!!! EEPS!

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Knit: Poseidon Socks

FO: Poseidon Socks

Poseidon Socks
Pattern | Poseidon Socks by Elinor Brown
Yarn | JulieSpins Glimmer in Darkling
Needles | 2.25, 2.5 and 2.75mm DPN and circulars

I actually finished this before Chinese New Year but never got around to blogging about it (due to the pre-CNY pre, post-CNY trip and then the crazy time at the shop with V-Day promos) until now!

I was itching for a quick project to sort of give me a break from all the soap- and balm-making for the past couple of weeks (sounds like something that’s worse that a physical addiction to opiates). Socks seemed like a good pic and I had a nice stash of sock yarn to choose from. The problem was the pattern. I fell in love with the yarn by JulieSpins – she makes the loveliest, ultra saturated, rich hued yarns and fibres ever! – but picking a pattern (that I liked too) to ensure that the colour doesn’t pool or muddle out was quite a challenge.

I finally settled on this one by Elinor Brown which features a small amount of lace and nothing overly fancy. I stuck to my master sock formula for the heel which is basically a gusset and the Eye of Partridge heel flap. The socks fit really well, are utterly comfortable although I would love for the cuff to have some form of staying power. I reckon that could be easily remedied with some elastic thread that I’ll just have to handsew into the stitches.

I’m glad to see that for now, the Second Sock Syndrome is being kept at bay and I’ve also started making some headway into my stash. Destashing 2014 Year is looking quite promising…especially when you consider that I’m already working on another knit project! Tehehehe!

FO: Poseidon Socks

Ravelry Project Page Ravelry info available here.

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A Simple Fitted Sheet

A Simple Fitted Sheet

A Simple Fitted Sheet
Size | To fit a 60 x 120 x 9 cm mattress
Pattern details | 100% cotton fabric from Kamdar

We brought back Eva’s crib from Singapore but didn’t realize that all our sheets were too big. Since IKEA is in PJ and we weren’t going to my parents’ place any time soon, I decided to sew a fitted sheet. Kamdar – a local fabric supplier – is just around the corner and Christmas came early (yay to the new sewing machine – more on this in another post!)!

I couldn’t really find the right fabric at Kamdar; initially wanted to use printed fabric but the prints they had were either too “noisy” (or suitable for things like sexy lingerie – hmm) or just not quite appropriate for a kid’s room. In the end, I settled for a plain cotton fabric in turquoise. The fabric is quite decent for the price (the cotton is around RM4-5 per metre) so I might go back and get some other colours like olive and khaki…

It is easy to sew up a fitted sheet. I folded the fabric into quarters, measured out the width & length and cut out a square for the edging before serging and sewing up everything. Instead of sewing on the elastic, I threaded it around the entire sheet. All in all, I spent less than two hours on this.

The result is as per the picture! This is an easy, quick and simple project for beginner sewers and can even be sewn up by hand (if you’re machine-less and have a lot of time to spare).

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Knit: Red Diamonds Entrelac Stole

FO: Red Diamonds Entrelac Stole

Red Diamonds Entrelac Stole
Pattern | Lady Eleanor Entrelac Stole by Kathleen Power Johnson
Yarn | Patons North America SWS (Soy Wool Stripes) in Natural Geranium & Natural Violet
Needles | 6mm

I finally finished a very very VERY old project. Took me a grand total of FOUR YEARS & EIGHT MONTHS – yes, you read that right – to finish! I have no real excuses except a few of the cross-continent moves I made in between and the very long bouts of knitters block. The last move triggered me to not just stop stashing but to also finish my old projects that have been hibernating.

When I took out this project, I realized that I didn’t have much to knit up – I was down to my last two balls…well, slightly over one since nearly half a ball will go to making the fringe on the ends. So I decided to pick up the speed – I began knitting whenever I took a break from soapmaking and found that with one or two hours a day, I was making good progress.

FO: Red Diamonds Entrelac Stole

I didn’t really follow this pattern – there are many variations of it floating around the Internet and some of these variations are free. So I adapted it to suit what I was looking for, the size I wanted, etc. Trouble is that I started this many years ago so along the way, when I had picked it up again in between then and now, I must have done something “off” because the width suddenly increased a little. I might have switched needle sizes or changed my knitting tension. Who knows? Hopefully, with a little blocking, this error won’t be obvious.

One thing tho – this won’t be going on anyone’s shoulders. The approximately 10 balls of yarn that went into this has resulted in a heavy stole. I suspect it’ll be more suitable as a wrap in terms of the weight but not quite the width. I don’t know if I’ll be hanging onto this or gifting it since Christmas is coming soon (I usually give something handmade like knitted wear or soap for Christmas).

I must say that now that this is done, I’m quite glad to see it gone. I’ll be picking up the cardigan I started for myself – hopefully I’ve kept track of my progress!

Ravelry Project Page Ravelry info available here.

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WIP: Eva’s Random Molecule Quilt

Eva's Random Molecule Quilt

I finally picked up this project again and with Mum’s help, I managed to churn out enough hexagons for Eva’s quilt. I didn’t really have a particular pattern in mind when I set out to make an English Garden quilt (hexagon quilt). Some people would make flower patterns, some trees and such but me? I just plonked down on the floor and started placing hexagons as & how I liked to plot out a pattern.

The result is what you see above. My hubby was quick to say that this reminded him of chemistry and molecules and what-not. I thought of biology more when I saw this. The kids found it fun – at least Noah did (he tried to squash the hexagons, throw them and so forth). I had to clamour to keep them before he got his little chubby hands on them!

Eva liked the shades of pink and red (what else is new?)…I wonder how she’ll react to the finished quilt!

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Knit: Narnia

FO: Narnia Shawl

Narnia
Pattern | Narnia Shawl by Lily Go
Yarn | PurPle Alpaga in Gris Clair
Needles | 3.25mm and 3.5mm (bind off)

Since my travel project was completed just before I travelled to Penang, I thought I’d take a break and start a new project in Malaysia. But by the time I arrived at Dubai airport, I was itching for something to work on with my hands. Luckily I had enough sense to pack my project necessities (yarn, needles, etc) in my carry-on bag.

Note: If you intend to fly AND knit, be sure to carry only wood-based needles. They’ll show up on the x-ray as pencils or toothpicks or sticks. No metal. Same goes for DPNs and straight needles.

FO: Narnia Shawl

The pattern was pretty easy to follow despite having no rest rows (read: all purl/knit on the wrong side) and I adored the transition between one pattern to the other. This transition is especially obvious when the shawl is being blocked – one must always block lace shawls in order for the pattern to really shine and pop! I wouldn’t mind knitting up another Narnia in another colour…it’s that pretty.

I couldn’t say the same for the yarn. By some oddity, I developed allergies to it. Every time I pick up the shawl to knit, I would end up with itchy hives on only my left hand. If I don’t stop for a day or two in between, it would “spread” to my right hand. I have never had this problem with other alpaca yarns so it couldn’t be alpaca itself that is causing the problem. I have another skein of the same yarn but in a different colour so will see how my skin reacts to handling that yarn.

I’m not too sure if I’ll keep this for myself. While I like the shade – of lately, I’ve been very fascinated with shawls in solid colours – I am not too sure if I’d have a need for it. I still have my Jaali, Melange and other shawls. Maybe I could sell it if I’m tired of stashing so many shawls? Hm. Now back to my other crafts and surfing the Net for a mount for ipad.

Ravelry Project Page Ravelry info available here.

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