Wednesday 29 June 2011

Marcus Finished

At last, it's done. 

The sweater for my husband is finally finished - and has received his approval!

I really pleased with the fit - just as I had planned it - but you never know until they try it on. 

The Sirdar Balmoral was a real treat to knit with - such a lovely quality to it.  You can see full details of the project on my Ravelry page, here

The timing of finishing the sweater was not good.  I finished stitching it up just as the heatwave arrived - but he'll get plenty of wear from it in the winter. 

I'll post the pattern for the sweater once I've typed it up and made all the calculations for sizing. 

Now, back to knitting for me!!!

Sunday 26 June 2011

On Our Travels

Open days for the universities are upon us and we're off travelling around the country to see which university Eve would like to go to.  On Friday we went to Nottingham. 

It's a beautiful campus - we loved it there.  Lots of green spaces, a lake and lovely buildings. 

This one is the history building which apparently used to be a coach house. 

Everyone was very helpful and friendly, the accommodation looked good.  Eve could definitely see herself here.  The only probelm was that she wasn't impressed with the course for the subject she is most interested in. 

So this coming week, it's Durham University and then the following week it's Cambridge. 

I couldn't take the sweater I'm knitting for my husband in the car with me as the Fair Isle is too messy for car journeys.  Instead I started a new cardi for myself.  I have had the balls of wool sitting in front of me for the past week, in order to motivate myself to finish my DH's sweater.  Nottingham and back enabled me to easily complete the ribbing for the back on this new one. 

The main colour is actually more green than in the picture and the red is a lot brighter.  For the journey to Durham I plan to do the ribbing for the fronts and as much of the sleeve cuffs as I can.  The main body of the cardi will be Fair Isle. 
Never fear, the sweater for my DH is now knitted, it just needs making up. 

There's a Formula 1 race today, from Valencia, so a few hours in front of the television should see this finished.  The irony is that following the weeks of cold and miserable weather, there's a heat wave predicted for today and tomorrow - so wearing a warm sweater will be the last thing on his mind. 

Wednesday 22 June 2011

Canal Walk

Today is our wedding anniversary.  I must say, this past year has gone very quickly.  Was it really twelve months since our 25th anniversary

Today we decided to go for a peaceful stroll along the Leeds to Liverpool canal. 

On previous outings, we've walked the stretch of the canal around Lydiate, Maghull, Melling and Aintree, so today we decided to walk towards Liverpool itself. 

We started our walk at Waterloo, went through Seaforth, Litherland and ended up in Bootle. 

Despite going through some very built-up areas, the canal was lovely and peaceful.

There were plenty of coots and moorhens with their babies. 

The canal itself was mostly clean and looked after, but it was spoilt in a few places by swathes of plastic bottles and cans.  It always makes me sad when I see such ugliness. 

All in all it was a lovely morning.  I need to rest my feet for a while now, but we're off out later for a romantic evening together!

Sunday 19 June 2011

Our Newest Driver

Grace has passed her driving test.  After many months of lessons she finally plucked up courage to put in for her test.  I thought she would be nervous but she said the test was more relaxing than the lessons. 

I didn't make her a good luck card, instead I made her this. 

It's based on the pattern Tiny Wheels Crazee Carz by Christal friend and is available for free here

I modified the bottom part of the car to make it more chubby, left off all the crochet trimmings and added buttons for the wheel trims.  Grace liked the car and took it with her on the test.  Obviously having the good luck car with her made all the difference. 

Eve made a pie to celebrate her success. 

Summer fruits - delicious. 

Wednesday 15 June 2011

Colour Co-ordination

I have a wonderful selection of knitting needles - mostly bamboos. 

The problem is the size that is printed on them wears off after a few uses and then you can't easily tell which size it is. 

Fortunately I have a handy little gadget that belonged to my grandmother that is great for determining the sizes. 

It isn't in metric but the old imperial sizes so it's a case of remembering the conversions. 

Today I decided to make life easier by colour co-ordinating the needles.  My lovely girls have many interesting shades of nail polish -

-so I used these to paint the tops of the needles. 

My favourite needles sizes, 3.75mm and 3.25mm are pink and yellow - so I should remember them.  I'll just have to make sure I don't forget what the other colours stand for. 

Now it's all very colourful and jolly.

Monday 13 June 2011

Slow Progress

Every morning, as soon as I get up, I go for a long walk around the park or along the beach.  This is my thinking time.  I can plan what I'm going to do that day, think about ideas for knitting and crochet projects, daydream and enjoy the solitude and scenery. 

This morning the weather was still miserable, no sunshine, not very warm and quite windy.  It made me think of warm sweaters and that reminded me of the sweater I'm knitting my DH.  So now it's back to work - only the sleeves to finish - c'mon girl! One last push!

Wednesday 8 June 2011

No Motivation!

It may seem as though all is quiet on the knitting front but I do have a project on the go at the moment.  Unfortunately it isn't for me.  I'm knitting a sweater for my DH - I rashly suggested I knit him something but as always I am now regretting the offer. 

Firstly I find it difficult to motivate myself if the finished article isn't for me - basically I'm a selfish knitter. 

Secondly, my DH usually finds something wrong with anything I knit him - too big, too short, too long etc etc.  This time I decided to customise a sweater for him rather than using a purchased pattern.  So I'm having to write a pattern for this sweater as I go along. 

Thirdly, obviously men's sweaters are bigger than women's - so take longer to do. 

Here's a peak at the work in progress. 

I have today forced myself to sit and finish the front.  I'm trying to whip up some enthusiasm by planning an interesting cardi I can start when this sweater is finished.  What a martyr I am!!

Monday 6 June 2011

Grace - some beginnings

An exciting day for Grace today - she starts her first ever job!!  She's working for an electronics company for four months over the summer - a great experience for her.  I'm sure she'll enjoy it.  Unfortunately she has a long train journey each way but we've bought her lots of interesting books to read and she'll be able to do loads of knitting and crocheting. 

She promised herself that when her exams were out of the way she would start her own blog - and in the last few days she has got it up and running.  It's called The Smiling Robot

Give it a visit - she'll appreciate it. 

Thursday 2 June 2011


How exciting - I've just bought a mannequin, to help me with my designing. 

This is how she looks in the flesh, so to speak. 

And here she is wearing a pretty dress. 

We've named her Ada.  She's currently looming over us in the living room but I'll have to find a more suitable place for her to stand because she's quite intimidating.