Tag Archives: knitting

Eliza Bed Socks!

That’s right, I’m making more socks!

img_1651

I’m making some yummy soft bed socks using another (I know, right. I can hardly keep up!) new yarn from Scheepjes.

Scheepjes Eliza, available from Wool Warehouse: http://bit.ly/woolwarehouse

Let me tell you a bit about the yarn; Eliza comes in 36 shades, and 9 of those are gradient yarns.  It’s a 100% polyester yarn and is suitable for a 5mm hook.  I’m using 3.75mm needles for my socks as larger needles were much too big.  It’s lovely and soft, and as well as bed socks I think it would be a great yarn for crocheting or knitting soft toys, or a snuggly cowl.

I’m using – you guessed it – Turquoise Gem (222).

Scheepjes Eliza, available from Wool Warehouse: http://bit.ly/woolwarehouse

To make the socks, I’m using the brilliant tutorials from my fab friend Sarah at Crafts From the Cwtch.  Sarah has created a load of amazing tutorials and they, along with a few frantic texts, have totally taught me to knit socks!

I’m knitting two at a time toe up socks, and will use the afterthought heel method, and Sarah has tutorials for all of them, see below!

A beginner's guide to Two at a time Toe-up socks by Crafts from the Cwtch -http://bit.ly/toe-up-socks

A beginner’s guide to two at a time toe-up socks

 

Demystifying the toe-up sock by Crafts from the Cwtch http://bit.ly/moretoeupsocks

Casting on and knitting the toe

 

Placing the afterthought heel tutorial by Crafts from the Cwtch: http://bit.ly/heelplacement

Adding the Afterthought Heel

Scheepjes Retailers in the Benelux stock Eliza, and globally you can order it via Wool Warehouse*.  Go! Run! Get your Eliza on!

http://shareasale.com/r.cfm?b=842729&u=1168367&m=63378&urllink=&afftrack=

*Affiliate link

Advertisements

Winterlight

A couple of months or so ago I came across a brand new podcast on youtube by my Insta-friend Vanessa Kind and she introduced me to the wonderful indie dyer Dingo Dyeworks.  I fell head over heels with all the yarns and colourways – you know how much I love a good merino yarn.

When I visited the site I was overwhelmed.  How could I possibly choose between all these amazing yarns?!  But then I saw Winterlight.

Winterlight is a shawl designed by Meg Gadsbey from Atelier Yarn in Sydney, in collaboration with Petah from Dingo Dyeworks in her beautiful Fair Dinkum Dingo Tail gradients.

Dingo Dyeworks Fair Dinkum Dingo Tails

I love the Fair Dinkum range, it carries the NewMerino certification, which is a an Australian initiative promoting 100% traceability, sustainability and ethical treatment.

The hardest decision was then what else should I get?  Because the yarn was coming all the way from Perth, I couldn’t just order one skein – it’d be a waste right?

In the end I settled on some Fair Dinkum ultrafine fingering in Blue Gum.   Blue gums have the most incredible scent.  In the region I grew up in, about 20 years ago graziers started cashing in on the blue gum boom, selling their land for a thousand dollars an acre (insane money) to be replanted with blue gums.  All of a sudden I was living in a forest instead of farmland, it was strange how the landscape changed so rapidly.

Dingo Dyeworks Fair Dinkum fingering in Blue Gum

So the blue gum is something familiar, and a lovely colourway, so it fits.  I have a project in mind, another Meg Gadsbey design called Minnamurra.  Aren’t all these Australian names awesome?  It makes me a bit homesick to be honest.  I think my obsession with merino is something that I use to keep me connected, do you know what I mean?

I absolutely loved making Winterlight.  The pattern is perfect for someone like me who doesn’t class themselves as a “knitter””- although I do now!  It’s also just beautiful, so that’s reason enough!

Winterlight shawl. Made with Dingo Dyeworks Fair Dinkum Dingo Tails and Winterlight pattern by Meg Gadsbey on Ravelry

I can’t wait to make another one.  But I have a to-do list and WIP list that is longer than my arm, so it’ll have to wait a bit.

Winterlight shawl. Made with Dingo Dyeworks Fair Dinkum Dingo Tails and Winterlight pattern by Meg Gadsbey on Ravelry

And finally, do check out Vanessa’s great podcast on Youtube.  Although, lock up your wallet; she’s a bad influence!

 

Can I Really Knit Socks?

Socks have always scared me.  I see everybody on Instagram knitting their beautiful woolly socks and love them, but think: nope.  I can’t knit socks.  I’m also very worried about Second Sock Syndrome, that common phenomenon whereby you knit one beautiful sock but can’t be bothered to knit the other.

But my friend Tammy has been telling me for years that I should knit socks; that it’s easy and beautiful, and my other friend Sarah insists the socks last forever and can be worn more than once (can you imagine wearing your socks for more than one day?).

I had never seen a sock being knit in real life either, so it was like a magic trick that everyone but me knew how to do.  But at the weekend that changed!  I watched Tammy knitting a pair of OMG beautiful socks and I knew I had to do it.

Because we were all together for Bloggers Day, Sarah was planning on giving Dedri a lesson on basic sock knitting.  I wormed my way in and commandeered the yarn that Sarah had earmarked for another project – the lovely Invicta Everest from Scheepjes – plus her fancy new Knit Pro Zing needles and we lined up on the “Naughty Step” for our lesson.

There we are, on the naughty step, learning to knit socks while Kirsten and Esther smile for the camera

While Kirsten and Esther are smiling for the camera, you can see Sarah Showing Dedri and myself what to do.

After a bit of confusion on how to do Judy’s magic cast on, we were away.  Sarah is a great teacher, with endless patience.  This is great as I’m a bit of a tantrum thrower when things don’t immediately work for me.  But we got there in the end and after a couple of days, I’ve already gone past the heel and am working on the leg!

I’m loving the learning process, it’s really satisfying to see this sock growing slowly.

I’m planning on adding Sarah’s Afterthought Heel at the end, hoping it’ll work as I’m pretty clueless at this point as to how to do it, but that’s what tutorials are for, right?

Sock One, with Scheepjes Invicta Everest

I’m loving this self-striping yarn too, by the way.  Often I think self striping yarn is a bit meh, but I love the solid stripes of this one.  I’ll have to find a brown and yellow version so I can knit my aunt a pair of Hawthorn socks as she’s about their biggest fan!

You can find this wonderful Invicta yarn at Scheepjes retailers throughout the Benelux, plus Wool Warehouse in the UK and internationally.

 

Could it be? Yes it is! It’s Yarn Day!!

My favourite day of the week!

So, today I have some of the most beautiful cotton yarn to show you – The Sunkissed by Scheepjes.

Sunkissed by ScheepjesJust look at those colours!  And this is just a tiny selection.  There are 11 colours to choose from (so far) and this is just the most beautiful summer yarn.  It’s lovely and soft, just like the Cotton 8, and the colour variation is to die for.  Actually, you can very easily partner the Sunkissed with the Cotton 8 as they’re the same weight and hook size (sport and a 3mm hook/needle).  It’s 100% cotton and comes in 50 gram skeins.  There are loads and loads of great retailers in NL and Belgium where you can pick it up, or if you’re outside the Benelux, head to Deramores.com.

But what should I make?  Well, I’ve decided on a really simple knitting project.  Something that even the biggest novice can make, because let’s face it.  That’s what I am: a knitting novice!

Look at the little swatch I’ve already made, isn’t the colour amazing?colour swatch Scheepjes Sunkissed

I’m not sure I’ll have quite enough to finish this project, so we’ll have to wait and see, won’t we.  Pop back next week for an update.

Meanwhile, have you started working on the Peek-a-Boo Button Wrap yet?  What do you think of it?  I’m overwhelmed by the positive responses that I’ve had so far, thanks so much!!!

Breidag – A Yarn Paradise?

This weekend, together with my friend Tammy, I headed off to Breidag in Rijswijk here in the Netherlands.  It’s basically an excuse for yarn freaks like myself to see all the pretties in one place.

I went last year, and that was my first opportunity to be able to get up close and personal with a lot of the beautiful yarns that I had only dreamed about seeing, and this year was more of the same.  This year I had two goals in mind: to finally choose a long colour changing yarn from Wol Cafe, and to get my hands on some roving to finally learn how to make my own yarn.  I also hoped to find someone stocking the Vinnis Bambi which I first saw when Maaike from CreJJtion showed me this beautiful stole.  But overall I just wanted to fondle all the gorgeous yarns.

Upon arriving, Tammy and I decided to first do a lap, then come back to the stalls that we wanted to buy from.  We were really hoping to be dazzled by all the choices and the obvious love of yarn art, as we had been last year.

What we quickly discovered though was, much of the same, everywhere.  The big brands were very well represented.  Lots of Katia, lots of Scheepjes, Phildar and some Catania.  I love all these brands, but was hoping for more diversity.  However, hidden amongst the giants there were some wonderful pockets of loveliness.  Textiel Werk en Zo with their hand dyed and undyed yarns and spinning wheels, Diversan with their natural fibres, and Pink Hazel with their handmade needle cases.

Zeven Katten were there as well, and we had had such a great time with them last year that we wanted to go say hi and see what amazing yarns they had this year, but it was almost impossible to get to the stand!  As with these events (and I don’t know if it’s a Dutch thing or not), elbows were sharp and middle-aged women take no prisoners.  I found myself getting closer to the front of the pack and someone would swoop in and I’d be spat out the side.  In the end it wasn’t worth the hassle, so I moved on.

I had much the same experience at Wol Cafe.  Tammy and I waited a few minutes to get in close enough to look at the yarns we were hoping to buy, and the entire time I was there, a woman just kept reaching over my shoulder to grab at the yarns, then as I was paying, she was already shoving me out the way with her backpack.  This kind of behaviour really spoils an event for me.  Especially right now when I’ve just come back from a month in Australia where I couldn’t imagine a single person not politely waiting their turn!  That’s right, culture shock is hitting me hard.

So, what did I get?

Well, I finally decided on a Limited By Wol Cafe yarn.  It was a tough choice.  Usually I’m totally drawn to the pinks and turquoise colours, but I decided to go with a navy to cream colour.

Limited By Wol Cafe http://www.wolcafe.nl/Limited-by-Wolcafe-donkerblauw/grijs/creme-109

I also couldn’t resist the Bamboo yarn that I found at Diversan. The entire stall was dedicated to natural fibres, which I LOVE!  I’ve found myself really being pulled towards the natural fibres, as the feeling and the colours are just so beautiful.

bamboo yarn from diversan  - http://diversan.nl/index.php?item=bamboe-witgrijs-gemeleerd&action=article&group_id=15&aid=322&lang=NL

And finally I bought a drop spindle and some roving to teach myself how to spin.  Ideally I’d like to get a spinning wheel, but they’re expensive and I’m not sure my husband would support yet another yarn habit, considering I’m starting to knit as well!

I started practicing yesterday because basically I couldn’t wait any longer (than 24 hours!).  So far it’s interesting.  I’m not loving it because having to stop and start to keep the spindle spinning and then to wind the yarn is irritating, but hopefully with practice it will improve.  Suggestions for great tutorials online will be greatly appreciated!

Overall, what did I think of Breidag?  Well, I think MaraMaakt kind of summed it up (aside from her ideas on mulesing).  The venue wasn’t the greatest, there wasn’t a lot of atmosphere and there were a LOT of stalls with mass-produced yarns and the big brands.  I remember last year being all about the love of fibre.  There were not many Wow yarns this year, and I missed the diversity of crafts aside from, well, knitting.  There was quite a bit of crochet represented, but almost no spinning or dyeing (two or three stands) and I had hoped to see more beauty.

So, will I go again?  I’m not sure.  I might consider the handwerkbeurs in October, but it’s in the same location and although Rijswijk is easy for me to get to, the venue is dark and the layout made it crowded.  There was a LOT of space in that room, but all the stalls were really crammed in against one another.

The company, however, was amazing.  Thanks Tammy!