Monday, 29 May 2017

Tea & Possibilities Episode 26: The Problem With Being A Knitter



INTRODUCTION

You can find me on Instagram and Twitter, as well as Ravelry. We also now have a Ravelry group!

The Best Year Ever KAL is a year long knit along which started on 1st January 2017 and will be running until 31st December 2017. You knit 4 things that bring you lots of joy and you could win a prize! 

Today's tea is Detox Infusion from M&S (which doesn't appear to be on their website, but you can find a blog review of it here) which the lovely RachelRavenclaw of The Crafty Historian podcast sent me. Thank you, Rachel! There is a tea recommendation thread in the Ravelry group.

This episode was filmed exactly a week after the Manchester bombing. I didn't feel this could go unacknowledged. This is not just happening here, this is not a one off - innocent people, children, are being killed every day, in places like Syria. Much as I want this podcast to be a place of positivity and cheerfulness, I do want to make a positive impact in the world.

I'm looking into ways in which the knitting community can reach out with love and support - if you want to join in, or if you know of any ways we can help, please let me know!


WIP'D UP!

I won't be showing this project off every week as now it's getting very warm, I'm only putting on a row here and there:

Shanghai Stripes Blanket
Ravelry page: here
Pattern: Granny Stripes by Attic24
Yarn: Paintbox Yarns Simply Aran in the Steel & Stitch colourway, leftovers from my Crochet Girl Gang Blanket

GrHATitude
Ravelry page: here
Pattern: Tied Knots by Justyna Lorkowska
Yarn: Madeline Tosh DK in Earl Grey

I've done the first pattern repeat and I continue to adore the  German Twisted Cast On! With any leftovers, I'd like to make the Alfalfa Hat by Kate Gagnon Osborn.

Find Your House
Ravelry Page: here
Pattern: Find Your Fade by Andrea Mowry
Yarn: Various. First colour is Old Maiden Aunt Superwash Merino/Nylon/Sparkle 4-ply in 'Bluebells'

I've finally started the second lace section! Not without issues - but woohoo!

This week I was lucky enough to receive two beautiful parcels. The first was from OddKnits Adventures, who wanted me to test drive one of her project bags. She also included a narwhale card (I love narwhales!), hand-drawn by her friend Gemma Keith, which will be going up on the wall in our flat. She also sent me some minis from her Stranded Dyeworks collection - Flamingo Legs, Fright Night and Bonanza!

The second parcel was from Clara of Studio C Yarn, who sent a stunning skein of yarn for the Best Year Ever KAL prize drawer. It's magical, I'm super jealous of whoever wins it! But Clara was incredibly generous and sent me a gift too (thank you!). If you like my beautiful wildflower project bag, you can find a couple more in Clara's shop.


KNIT & NATTER

I wanted to share some thoughts on looking back this week. A couple of years ago, I used a lot of natural beauty products, most of which I made for myself at home. I was also obsessed with yoga and would get on my mat 5-7 times a week.

That got lost during the rough time I had in 2016, but it's now something that I'm happily returning too. I'm using coconut oil as a moisturiser again and am making my own oil cleanser for my face.

(I do use modern medicine too though - anti-histamines, asthma pumps and painkillers for the win!)

I preordered Namaslay by Candace Moore ages ago and forgot that I had it. I love her YouTube channel and I have her Sweat DVD (sadly packed away!) and I'm excited to read this and revisit my yoga practice. Being office bound, it feels very necessary for my tight hips and back!

I hope you can find some time this week to revisit some things that you used to love. In the spirit of the Best Year Ever KAL - I hope you find something that brings you joy :)

I'll see you next week for another cup of tea! Have a great week :)

Saturday, 27 May 2017

Tea & Possibilities Episode 25: Inaugural Yarn Cake




INTRODUCTION

You can find me on Instagram and Twitter, as well as Ravelry. We also now have a Ravelry group!

The Best Year Ever KAL is a year long knit along which started on 1st January 2017 and will be running until 31st December 2017. You knit 4 things that bring you lots of joy and you could win a prize! 

Today's tea is Yorkshire Gold because I need my rocket fuel! There is a tea recommendation thread in the Ravelry group.

Very little making done this week as I was away in Kyiv for a few days and then was to exhausted to do much!


WIP'D UP!

I've started the foot on my sock! I frogged a few times, as I was getting a hole in the gusset. So I picked up a stitch there and decreased it away on the next round. 

I'm working cuff down, magic loop on Hiya Hiyas, using Louise Harding Amitola in the Biscuit colourway. Not sure about the Short Row Heel - think Heel Flap and Gusset would be a better fit. Will try that then the Fish Lips Kiss. Thank you for all your feedback and suggestions!

Shanghai Stripes Blanket
Ravelry page: here
Pattern: Granny Stripes by Attic24
Yarn: Paintbox Yarns Simply Aran in the Steel & Stitch colourway, leftovers from my Crochet Girl Gang Blanket

GrHATitude
Ravelry page: here
Pattern: Tied Knots by Justyna Lorkowska
Yarn: Madeline Tosh DK in Earl Grey

I learnt a new cast on for this hat - the German Twisted Cast On! Using Addi fixed circulars for the first time and really enjoying them - want to try them for Magic Loop.

Non-crafty YouTube videos I've been enjoying while too tired to knit are Binging with Babish and Holistic Habits.

I have a quick look through the 5th anniversary issue of Pom Pom and the re-issue of the very first issue. My favourites are Ceilidh and Soiree - I want to knit them immediately! Katie Green's comic this issue is even more stunning than usual - please produce these as prints!!

Also, I'll be going to Pomfest in July, I'll be there on the Friday. Will I see you there?

KNIT & NATTER

Thank you so much for your lovely comments and messages about my attempts to reduce the sugar I eat.

I chat a little about my short trip to Kyiv in the Ukraine this week (the reason I'm so tired!). But seriously though - if you ever go there, eat the hummus!

I'll see you next week for another cup of tea! Have a great week :)

Sunday, 14 May 2017

Tea & Possibilities Episode 24: Guide Sock



INTRODUCTION

You can find me on Instagram and Twitter, as well as Ravelry. We also now have a Ravelry group!

The Best Year Ever KAL is a year long knit along which started on 1st January 2017 and will be running until 31st December 2017. You knit 4 things that bring you lots of joy and you could win a prize! 

Today's tea is Carrot Cupcake from David's Tea, from the lovely Katie of Inside Number 23. I've also tried the rhubarb tea that Claire of the Beautiful Things podcast recommended and it was yummy! I'm on the look out for it when we do our little bits of shopping.

There is a tea recommendation thread in the Ravelry group.

For Rich's birthday, we visited the Chapel Down Winery in Kent for a tour and a tour of the vineyard and winery, a wine tasting and a delicious meal in The Swan Restaurant. It was super fun and interesting and the food was to die for - would totally recommend! It was only an hour on the train from London!

On Bank Holiday Monday I went to see Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead at The Old Vic. David Haig was a stand out and we got to meet Daniel Radcliffe afterwards!



Just a heads up that I'll be going on a work trip to Kyiv in Ukraine for a few days, so next week's episode may be light on WIPs. Which is fine because this episode is heavy on the WIP front...



WIP'D UP!

I bought my first project bag ever from Eldenwood Craft and it arrived this week! You should definitely buy all of Emma's bags as they are beautiful and she has a fab podcast too.

Currently living in my new alpine trees bag is...

Shanghai Stripes Blanket
Ravelry page: here
Pattern: Granny Stripes by Attic24
Yarn: Paintbox Yarns Simply Aran in the Steel & Stitch colourway, leftovers

I'm probably going to take this to Kyiv as it's deliciously brainless. 8 pattern repeats to go!

I've reached the collar of...

The Librarian Cardigan
Ravelry Page: here
Pattern: Hortencia by Andi Satterlund
Yarn: Cascade 220 Superwash in the Purple Heathers colourway

This will probably now be a stay at home project as I feel like I need to concentrate on all those short rows - definitely no longer a travel project!

I've picked my sock again, working cuff down, magic loop on Hiya Hiyas, using Louise Harding Amitola in the Biscuit colourway. I've just turned the heel and I LOVE it. I used a short row heel which was simple and turned out well I think (we'll see how it works on the fit front later!) I'd like to try another type of heel next time I make a pair, so please recommend your favourite heels!

Finally, I popped to Paperchase this week and noticed they have lots of nice little bags that would make great project bags and I snagged myself a cute alpaca one. This is supposed to be for socks, but I currently have a different project on the needles...

Find Your House
Ravelry Page: here
Pattern: Find Your Fade by Andrea Mowry
Yarn: Various. First colour is Old Maiden Aunt Superwash Merino/Nylon/Sparkle 4-ply in 'Bluebells'

Yes! It's back on the needles and I love it now!

I have somehow acquired a lot of yarn in the last couple of weeks.

My Strawberry Sherbet Dip Socks in a Box from Kate Selene arrived this week! This was a birthday present to myself back in March (Kate currently dyes to order - so please check her lead times before you order to avoid disappointment!) and it did not disappoint! There were also some beautiful minis for my blanket and some toadstool stitch markers.

I met up with the lovely Katie of Inside Number 23 and Amy of Stranded (Dyeworks and Podcast) over the weekend and we visited Loop!

We all purchased The Artisan by Helga Isager - I am particularly obsessed with the Birch Jacket - and I treated myself to some Socks That Rock by Blue Moon Fiber Arts in Jumpin' Jellybean.

Planning to add some crochet garments to my wardrobe this year, as I've fallen in love with Frank & Olive's modern, wearable patterns - Oversized CardiganStripe Dress and Oversized Granny Square Jumper.

Some Madeline Tosh in Earl Grey is also on its way to be made into a cabled hat.

KNIT & NATTER

Thank you all so much for the sweet comments and messages on my last Knit & Natter - it's so nice to talk to kindred spirits!

This week, I talk about my sugar addiction. Rich and I did I Quit Sugar by Sarah Wilson a few years ago and it felt amazing. I recently read Sweet Nothing by Nicole Mowbray and it really hit home - I need to reduce my sugar intake drastically. 

How do you avoid sugar when you're surrounded by treats at work and at home??

See you next week for another cup of tea!