Saturday, 30 March 2013

Stash Diving

I'd like to say that with it being 'spring' and a bank holiday I was inspired to have a good clearing, sorting & tidying session. As it was, I went into my tower drawer storage yesterday and found two skeins of yarn I realised I didn't have catalogued on Ravelry. Obviously that's not on, so....

Please meet skein No. 1 - a gorgeous, squishy, pale yellow, semi-solid skein from the fantastic Knitting Goddess. (I love, love, love her yarns, and if anyone's stuck on what to get me for my birthday in June, they have a sock yarn club!) This one was gifted to me by Makan on Ravelry, also known as Leah :)

I also found this one, which I cannot remember buying :s May have had a slightly yarn buying addiction a few years back! I did go a bit nuts buying yarn to make up for the fact I wouldn't be able to for 3 years while in Uni. (Or so the theory went, please ignore the last yarn porn post!)

Unfortunately Sugar Hippo Creations seems to be out of stock or stopped trading maybe. What a bloody shame, look at that skein! The colours are gorgeous and it's unbelievably soft too.

I found those two on Thursday, so yesterday morning (Friday) I grabbed my camera and Craig's ipad and went stash diving. When I was leaving Reading, I packed two massive cardboard boxes full of wool. They were boxes for IDEXX pots we used to use in work, which came lined with a plastic bag so I thought they'd do well in protecting the yarn from any nasties that might want to eat them. However because the first thing I packed was yarn (I was spending more time drinking & partying than knitting, how life changes...) I couldn't remember what was in them. I went home in January & brought the biggest box up to Cardiff as I realised I was seriously skint and would saddly have to start selling some of my lovelies.

So it was a box full of yarn I couldn't remember, and I wasn't sure if everything was catalogued. Turns out, they weren't!

Meet Teksrena. I bought these two Lithuanian skeins off Ebay back in December or January 2011 sometime. It's 100% wool so I'm a bit scared of using it yet (it'll felt!!) but the colours are gorgeous! I seriously want to try a pair of matching socks, or maybe a bright scarf. The yarn's a little rough & rustic, but there are some good reviews on Ravelry from other users. ('Users' makes us sound like druggies!). Here's another link to purchase some, they do all kinds of gorgeous colours!

I also found this skein of King Cole's Zig Zag which might have been another gift from Leah. I seem to remember she bought it from eBay, but I know we both independently bought a skein of something without checking with each other during our phase of going nuts buying all the cheap yarn we could find on eBay for our sock yarn blankets. I think she tried to gift me a skein I already had split for us? Not sure on that one. 

These are two skeins of Abstract Cat Crafts 'Pout' in superwash 100% merino sock yarn. I had this Christmas 2010, I asked Mam if she'd buy me some lovely yarn & gave her a few links. She ended up asking me to buy it instead & giving me the money for it as she hadn't knitted in so long she was unsure of what type of yarns would be best for me. Laura was the first indie dyer I came across & fell in love with (her yarns!).

I went through a phase at the start, of feeling the need to buy two skeins to make a pair of socks. Pretty ridiculous looking back. My first sock took 53g however, so I bought another & from then kept buying sock yarn in pairs. Now I barely use 70% of a skein when I knit socks for myself. So I think I might hang onto this pair & see what else I can make with them. It's lovely & soft yarn. 

I also found this skein of Black Cat Fibres dreaminess. I have NO recollection of buying it! Unfortunately my etsy purchase history doesn't list it either, maybe it was too long ago? I'd love to find out the name of the colourway (I'm a bit OCD like that), but will have to settle for knowing the yarn content instead. 

It's lovely & huggable, and I adore Ruth's work. She once custom dyed a skein for me after accidentally sending me the wrong skein in the post. Can't get better service! Unfortunately Ruth's health has prevented her from dyeing recently, but I'll link anyway. I really hope she recovers soon. 

I also found my second skein of Blue Sky from The Knitting Goddess. Yep, another skein from her!

This is another skein that I started knitting socks with, panicked I wouldn't have enough and bought another. Originally these were intended to make socks for my ex, but I ended up using them to start knitting Wraparound Gloves. I found the first half of a glove in a bag stashed in my storage tower (which takes us back to a full circle) and dug them out to work on during placement. I'm still deliberating making some socks for myself, the yarn is seriously nice to work with!

All of these have now been appropriately catalogued & stashed on Ravelry. I still have another big box at home, which I'll go through this summer. It's been an eye-opener to see just how much yarn I actually have, especially considering I bought most of it within the first year of beginning knitting! I have a lot of patterns lined up and no excuse not to go stash busting & make them!

Thursday, 28 March 2013

Trillian & Growth

It's finished!

It's taken a long time. A stupidly long time. 

But it's done. Washed & blocked and ready to go once it's dried. 

I also spied these this morning, teeny tiny little leaves poking up through the soil. I planted these leek seeds 1.5 weeks ago and was hoping they'd have grown by the time Craig came back. Took about 4 days longer, but they are finally showing signs of growth.

Still not convinced these are happy though, they didn't appear for months and they were due to flower in February. Ah well.

Plus, is it just me or does the one on the left look like a different plant?!

This is the second tub of leek seeds. One has shot up but is quite spindly, so I'll be keeping an eye on it. I'm running out of windowsill space!

Tuesday, 26 March 2013

Craig's Socks

The first sock took weeks. Craig has size 11 UK feet.

Picture of my laptop included for scale! It's a 15 inch screen lappy.

The yarn looks totally different with a flash!

Unfortunately with the crap weather we've had lately this was the best light I could get, and I swear it wasn't that dark when I took them! 

The top yarn is the body of the sock. I had one ball in each colour from Craig's Mam. So I bought another ball of the top yarn so he can have fraternal socks. The bottom ball (sounds a bit rude!) will make up the rest of the sock to his preferred height.

Friday, 15 March 2013

Naughty Yarn Porn

 I bought more yarn. Expensive yarn.

I'm supposed to be saving as I'm super skint right now, but Super Sock Store is closing down and I've wanted to try some Cherry Tree Hill yarn for years now.

It's absolutely stunning and my perfect mix of blues, pinks, purples & green. I can't regret this, I won't! (Although I regretted it before I collected it as the post office depot is a maze which I almost failed to navigate until the woman in the car behind me started gesticulating widly which way for me to go, which I just managed to see in my mirror).

I also made sensible purchases. Like this one. It's knit THEN dyed, with the theory being you then get matching socks. I've wanted to try these for ages. This was only $6 which works now (15/03/12) out as £3.96. It was cheaper when I bought it back in February. That is a bloody bargain for superwash merino sock yarn!! This colourway is currently offered on Ravelry in trades for $15.

My camera hasn't quite picked up the right shade of the blue, but it is my favourite part of the colourway and wasn't even shown on the website so was a very happy surprise :)

Mainly due to the price, I then picked up another as it seemed a shame to waste the opportunity, plus with the international shipping I may as well have! Unfortunately I forgot about the import tax at customs, and got charged £14.60 (including a £8 handling fee).

I'm leaning more towards either keeping this as a scarf or making socks for Craig. I'm not sure how the vertical stripes will knit up, so it'll be interesting to see.

This Cherry Tree Hill sock kit one was the most expensive at $23.60. There are currently a few kits left at $14 if you fancy it. The yarn is fantastic.

The price includes a sock pattern too. I've been trying to step away from my usual 'plain vanilla' sock that I've always made. So hopefully this will be a great transition, plus it's very pretty and squishy.  

I can almost always justify buying yarn, but I think it was worth it this time :) All of the above, plus international shipping for £47 (not including customs fee).

(I almost forgot, I listed all of my Wollemeise yarn for sale/trade on Ravelry back in January, at ridiculosly low prices (£22 each, I paid ~£25-30 each). Had a PM yesterday asking if my lovely blue is still for sale. Looks like I should be good and sell it to pay towards the customs fee!)