Wednesday, October 31, 2007

"Happy Halloween, Ladies."

The Hag - Robert Herrick - 1591-1674.

The Hag is astride,
This night for to ride;
The Devill and shee together;
Through thick, and through thin,
Now out, and then in,
Though ne'er so foule be the weather.

A Thorn or a Burr She takes for a Spurre:
With a lash of a Bramble She rides now,
Through Brakes and through Bryars, O're Ditches, and Mires,
She followes the Spirit that guides now.

No Beast, for his food, Dares now range the wood;
But husht in his laire He lies lurking:
While mischeifs, by these, On Land and on Seas,
At noone of Night are a working.

The storme will arise, And trouble the skies;
This night and more for the wonder,
The ghost from the Tomb Affrighted shall come,
Cal'd out by the clap of the Thunder.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Fireskull bag.

People who know me, know that I have a 'little' thing about skulls. Well, a while ago in a fit of knitting ADD I cast on for this, knit like mad, hurt my hand, abandoned it and forgot it *whoops*. On Friday wondering where all my Denise cords/needles were and having a hunt in the big knitting bag beside the sofa.... I found it again. Today I finished it. (Picture has battery for size comparison).
Close up of the Fireskulls. I adapted the chart from 'Hello Yarns' - 'We Call them Pirates' to make them a bit more evil looking, I also took out the cross bones and adapted the size and closeness to fit my stitch count.
After felting at a 40c wash with two pairs of M's Jeans (see the battery is back so you can how much it shrunk).
Close up of shrunken skulls - which I think now look very menacing!

Knitted on 6.5 mm needles the yarn is Lambs Pride Bulky in Black Cherry - courtesy of the lovely Kathrows - it took two skeins. The skulls are two different shades of Cascade 220 worked together to give a flame effect which is much clearer in real live. The button is courtesy of a raid on Ma's button box and comes off an old coat of hers - I love button boxes!!

For a pattern that I made up as I went along I quite chuffed with it and pleased it is ready in time for Halloween :-D

Grouch level - dissipating!

Grouchiness abounds.

1) Stop fucking with the time - it is pointless and messes with my head!

2) How can 1 child be so annoying and make so much mess in such a short space of time and always on a Sunday morning...... I ask you.... loose a slipper in the house so that it's disappeared into a slipper eating time warp!.

3) Weather!!! Need I say more? Murphy's law - got all the chores done yesterday so today we could go somewhere specific and spend all day out of doors and it rains.

4) I hate being the grumpy - it's almost at its zenith - give it a few more hours and it'll peak. I don't even have pmt as an excuse.

5) People who leave lights on *arghhhhhhhhhhhh*.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Crappola pictures!

Of lovely goodies. Just my luck that as I get stuff to post as fibre/yarn pR0n the camera runs out of battery power *sigh* so hence crappola pictures. Anyhoo, I digress, today I went to the textile show in Lewes of the East Sussex of Weavers, Spinners and Dyers and I spent some of my Saturday pennies. Above you can drool over...... I mean admire two skeins of Handmaiden Sea Silk - smells funny but feels wonderful.
A wool and silk blend from P & M Woolcraft about 200g - the picture does not do it justice. I can't wait to spin it.
A brown bag of lovely Alpaca - soft and fluffy!
Close up of the Sea Silk - more itchy fingers. I have so many plans for this whizzing around in my head - that I'm dizzy.

The show itself was very good - lots of stalls and examples of the Guilds work - which all of us enjoyed - M was very interested in the natural dying from plants and lichens. Met up with old and new friends which made for a really nice afternoon. I spent 90% of what I had in my purse and actually could have spent more.

A slog in the desert.

I love the pattern but hate the knitting.

Sahara....finished the body last night, still not sure I like it on me but I'll persevere. But all that plain knit in the round with just the odd inc/dec for light boring.....zzzzzzz!

Now I have to face the long sleeves - more of the same. It might be spending some time in the abandoned pile whilst I find a little project to give me a break.

But I must add that it's not the patterns fault, that I find plain knit a drag. The pattern is wonderfully written with really clear concise instructions - Wendy really does know her onions. I wouldn't hesitate to knit another pattern by her - such good construction! I must be a weirdo - love to knit but hate plain knitting - I need something to hold my attention - I can get through big projects when I know that in 8 rounds/rows that something different is coming up and I'll need to focus.

I have got knitting ADD at the moment. I still can't really settle to anything - other than wasting time on Facebook - ahhhhhh it's too addictive!

Monday, October 22, 2007

Round like a circle in a spiral...

like a wheel within a wheel.
Never ending or beginning on an ever spinning wheel.

Well that's what spinning this fibre felt like....never ending that is.

This is the rest of the over dyed BFL that I started spinning on my Haldane Lewis and finished off on the Traveller (both lots were plied on the Traveller and you can't tell between them). I normally love BFL but the over dying somehow made this a bit of a pig to spin evenly. I'm happy with it now it's done - but by Friday I was so pissed of with it! I chain plied it yesterday, it's bathed and almost dry. I much prefer the new colour and it will get used - though in the end I only got about 98g in total - but hats, gloves etc - it's perfect for.

On to the next one...... :-D

Candle holder was made for me by my ever loving M - it's a favourite piece - and is much used.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Incey wincey spider.....

went climbing up his/her tank. Or perhaps.........
fangs for the memory? No? Tiny went exploring the side of his glass tank this morning and it was too good an opportunity to miss. Not a mouth made for kissing!
As for Humbug - you can see his size next to half a coconut shell. See his two shorter front legs? The club like shape at the bottom is what I mean about the pedipalps becoming club like when they are male. This is probably the best picture we've managed to get of them.

Happy Sunday.....tis time for eggs and baccie :-D

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

The mystery of the missing mojo.

*Poof* and it was gone! My knitting mojo that is. The last months output has been abysmal. The above which was my Fair Isle travel project.....finished this morning - a month almost on a pair of plain ole vanilla socks. My 'Green socks - no ham' 2nd sock, a 2nd pair of fingerless mittens and a binky hat - both in Reggia Crazy Colour 6 ply - so quick knits.....and that's it. To say "uninspired" would be a clear case of utter understatement that it would be beyond English nature to comprehend. My knitting get up and go has got up and gone. I think it is due to the overwhelming tiredness I've been a suffering of since going oop north. Now I have a few quieter weeks planned, lets hope my equilibrium will be restored and knitting normality will resume. I did cast on for some more complicated socks yesterday....I fucked them up and had to frog 10 rows of the pattern and re-knit, solely due to a brain fart and nothing to do with the pattern, did I call myself some ripe ole names - talk about a dumbass moment!

Now as I have an at home day, until this evening, I'm going to make some soup for lunch, then after that I'll spin, listen to the latest Fibercult podcast and maybe somewhere along the way my missing mojo will reappear. Should anyone find it, cold and shivering in a dark corner of their stash please return to me asap..... I miss it!

P.S - Frankie Boyle....was non pc, rude as anything and as funny as fuck - the man truly rocks. I cried with laughter at least twice - it was more than worth the price of the ticket - to listen to the misguided pc part of the crowd (obviously at the wrong performance) gasp here and there with shock at this mans comic refreshing!

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Back again.

Great holiday! Not as relaxing as normal but that's the difference between going with 1 kid and going with 3 I think. Very little knitting but lots of walking, saunas, swimming and a lovely massage. On the 1st morning I sat on the patio with my cuppa - it was around 7.00am - peaceful - a little Roe deer appeared out of the mist and we looked at each other carefully - the deer put its head down and munched and I thoughtfully sipped my tea (yay for a Hazel O'Connor vibe). Then a bold little grey squirrel came onto to the patio and ran around my slippered feet as bold as you like. I love those moments best of all!

The picture is of a little baby common lizard M found by our patio on holiday - he so liked the warmth of M's hand he fell asleep and sat there for ages.....isn't it lovely. I've never seen one in the wild before.

I am glad to be home though and need some recovery time, two trips so close together (and I never sleep well when I'm away) have rather drained me. I intend to spend this week catching up - though we're out tonight - got tickets to see Frankie Boyle (Mock the Week panelist) and I'm out again 1 or 2 evenings this week - tis all go!

The animals were pleased to see us back, Conkers even got on M's lap 3 times!!!! Unheard of kitty cuddles from the Bonkmeister.

*************Spider Content*************

Had to post this of Doris - look at her amazing red fluff offsetting the green. Doris is what is often called a 'New World' tarantula, this means she has two lines of defense in the form of urticating hairs (aforementioned red fluff) as well as a nasty bite. They flick the hairs using their back legs, you can see a bald patch on her bum where she has done this. If startled they flick the hairs - which itch like crazy, if that doesn't work they rear up in a threat posture and if all that fails then they bite you! Tarantulas labelled 'Old World' are held are more aggressive because they go straight to threat and bite.
This is Coleman's - who earlier this year was too small to photograph. Now a fully matured male, he moulted the night before we left on our holiday. He's a Chacco Mustard Brown Tarantula and is about a 7" span when fully stretched out. Aren't his yellow striped stockings groovy though?
The most recent picture of Tiny - who along with Doris is my favourite spider - he (or maybe she - still a baby - at about 5") is very naughty in a spider way - I never thought a tarantula would be so bold or nosey - he's always at the front of his tank. I hope that Tiny turns out to be a girlie as we seem to be blessed with too many males at the moment.

Am off now to play catch up with the laundry, it's almost all done. Then just maybe if I'm really lucky I might get some time with the needles - knitting has been almost non existent recently.

Have a restful Sunday.

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Away and off with the


We're off on our hols for a few days from Monday. The packing lists are written, the mammoth laundry monster is in the process of being tamed, knitting and books are being sorted through and the ipod is on to charge.

I am so looking forward to a complete break with limited travelling. Fair Isle was wonderful the amount of travelling was tiring and had an effect that was longer reaching than I anticipated.

It will be nice to reach our destination and know that we are set put for a good few days - relying on feet and bikes to get us fucking ferries - I'm not even going on a piddling pedalo, they can keep the canoes and windsurfers!!!! I've kinda had enough of water (other than jacuzzi stylie) for a while.

I fully intend to walk, eat, knit, read, relax, imbibe of red falling down water, knit some more, sauna lots, knit even get where I'm going with this?

So I bid you adieu.....see you in a week, be good, no goofing off etc.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Green Socks - the sequel.

Another stunning design from the house of 'Dogwomandon't Socks' The recipe follows.......
The vine stem continues down into the heel flap.

Green-socks - no ham!

A lace sock pattern with a wavy travelling vine that extends down the heel flap. Top down construction with traditional heel flap.
Yarn - 100g sock weight - plain yarn.
2.5mm dpns (circs).
Stitch markers - optional.
Stitch holder.

Cast on 60 sts across either 3 or 4 dpns - divide with 15sts across set of 4 needles or 15, 30, 15 across 3. If using the latter mark the centre of needle 2 (30 sts) with a marker.
Work in twisted rib for approx 12 rows. K1tbl, P1.

Knit 1 plain row.

Commence with lace pattern - with using chart or as below.
1) k3, yo, k1, yo, k1, ssk, k3, k2tog, k1, p2 - repeat 4 times in total.
2) all alt rows across all needles - k13, p2.
3) k3, yo, k3, yo, k1, ssk, k1, k2tog, k1, p2 - rep x4
5) k3, yo, k5, yo, k1, sl 1 k2tog psso, k1, p2.
7) k1, ssk, k3, k2tog, k1, yo, k1, yo, k3, p2.
9) k1, ssk, k1, k2tog, k1, yo, k3, yo, k3, p2.
11)k1, k3tog, k1, yo, k5, yo, k3, p2.
Continue until leg is required length.

Heel flap.
Worked across 30 sts. (Place remaining 30 sts on a holder or spare needle).
1) K15, turn.
2) sl1, p14, k2, p13
3) sl1, k13, p2, k14
Repeat for 24 rows in total.

Heel shape.
1) sl1, p16, p2tog, p1 turn.
2) sl1, k5, ssk, k1 turn.
3) sl1, p6, p2tog, p1 turn.
4) sl1, k7, ssk, k1 turn.
Continue increasing one stitch until all sts are used up - 18 remain.

Pick up and knit 14 sts down the side of the heel flap.
Knit row 1 of lace pattern (2 repeats) across held sts.
Pick up and knit 14 sts up other side of heel flap - then k9 sts from heel.
So you should have 2 x 23 sts plus 30 = 73sts.
Next row - k9, k11 ktbl - to last 3 sts, k3tog, k1.
Pattern instep - work row 2 of chart.
k1, ssk, k 11 tbl, k9.
Next row - k gusset stitches.
pattern row 3 instep.
k gusset sts.
Next row - k gusset sts - to last 3 sts - k2tog, k1.
pattern row 4 instep
k1, ssk, k to end.
Rep last two rows until you are back to 60sts.

Cont with plain knitting for sole and pattern for instep until you have the required length.

Knit needle 1
Instep sts - p across to make a single ridhe.
Knit needle 3.
Decrease for toe
Row 1 - Needle 1 - k to last 3 sts, k3tog, k1.
Needle 2 (3) - k1, ssk, k to last 3 sts, k2tog, k1.
Needle 3 (4) - k1, ssk k to end.
Cont until 16 sts remain.

Graft toe sts using kitchener st.

Copyright PWL designs. (lace pattern adapted from Barbara G Walker - 2nd Treasury of knitting patterns.)
Feel free to use this pattern - I have double checked it and had it test knitted - but please yell out if you find problems/errors etc.

BFL handspun.

scarlet 002
Originally uploaded by loobles2002

My Haldane Lewis wheel will soon be off to a new home. I had a little of this yarn spun on to it. So I finished it off - the balance I will spin on my Traveller. This is hand-dyed with Koolaid - overdying an experiment that didn't work *sigh* - I think in the end there will be about 100g - chain plied.


scarlet 003
Originally uploaded by loobles2002

50g hand spun - chain plied. Merino and silk mix.......mmmmmm!

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Fair Isle

fairisle 100
Originally uploaded by loobles2002

From the plane as we flew back to Aberdeen.

Lerwick harbour

fairisle 097
Originally uploaded by loobles2002

A rather impressive ship - we could see the sailors way up in the rigging as we walked passed.


fairisle 092
Originally uploaded by loobles2002

View from our B&B window.

An early start.

fairisle 087
Originally uploaded by loobles2002

The start of our journey home via the ferry.....again! Twice in four days - I deserve a bravery award.

A local!

fairisle 028
Originally uploaded by loobles2002

This little Fair Isle kitty was asleep amongst some fleece in a cattle byre - hence the slightly disgruntled look!

Show me the way to go home.

Blogger has piccie hiccups - I'll post them later via flicker.

We left Fair Isle (via the ferry *gulp*) a day earlier than planned. Not cos we were unhappy, quite the contrary in fact, but we had flights to Aberdeen booked, M had to get back to work and to go on call and we were both missing J! We got the 7.30 ferry - not as rough - but still no picnic - I hunkered down on the back bench under a blanket and slept.

People are so kind up that way - one of the locals showed us the bus stop from the pier, on route another local offered a lift to the stop at the airport so we could warm up with a brew whilst waiting for a bus to Lerwick - in fact the whole time we were north of the border we met with nothing but warmth and kindness - after living down south it came as a shock!!!

We found a B & B - clean, warm and welcoming, spent a day exploring Lerwick - they have the best museum - really well put together and fascinating. Caught an earlier flight and drove all the way down the country back to Brighton in about 10 and half hours!

Now we wait...............and talk it all matter what the forum or NTS decide we have to be 100% sure that moving to Fair Isle is the right thing for all of us - Me, M, J, the animals - and also what the effect of us going will have on our wider family that we will leave behind. We are talking a lot!

Next week we're away on the family holiday to CentreParcs - distance away from home will I think help us weigh up what it best for us all. It is all a muddle in my head at the moment - a relaxing week of saunas should calm down the whirring turmoil :-D