The musings of an obsessive knitter and stash collector

Saturday, May 09, 2015

A future?

Having stayed up on Friday night until I was too heartsick from watching the Eton toffs take over the country for another 5 years I was still wallowing in misery and trying to figure out how I could get a transfer to Scotland when my random shuffle played this album - 

Celebrating Subversion: The Anti-Capitalist Roadshow particularly the track by Ian Saville The Vision the words are here  and you can hear it here

I'm still trying to understand how the voters will throw out the LIb Dems for supporting the Torys and then vote the Torys in, especially when so many of us are one pay cheque away from financial disaster nowadays, one unexpected bill away from turning off the heating or managing without the new shoes we or our kids need. Surely voting in a government planning another £12 billion cuts in the welfare budget on the basis that it won't affect 'us' but only 'them' - that nebulous them made up of scroungers and immigrants but never anyone like 'us' it's lunacy. It isn't even 'enlightened self interest' it's looking at the past 5 years and learning absolutely bugger all from the increase in zero hours contracts and the increased use of foodbanks, not just by sanctioned benefits claimants but by the employed on low pay.

I don't have any answers right now, I have no idea how to move forwards but I'm determined to try and figure out a way to move forwards in spite of the gloom I feel right now.

Monday, May 04, 2015


I bet you all thought I was dead I lost access to the email account linked to this blog and have spent the last year trying intermittently to get access, For some reason today I finally managed to sort it out, I think they must have changed how to get account information as today I had the option to get a recovery code by text and here I am!

No pictures or anything much to say today but I will try and find things to say and knitting to show you once I find my camera!

I do want you to see this- my sister made it for me for my birthday in 2014, this is the front of it and below is the back.
You must know that purple is my favourite colour, I've never been given anything as special as this, purple and black cats!

I promise I'll try and be back regularly now!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Update on the blanket

Hecate always likes to help me photograph any WIP that is big enough to need my bed as a back ground, she inevitably gets in the way either before or during the photography!

The blanket I'm working on is growing but with hindsight knitting the squares together whiel I make teh mitred ones isn't a great idea as it is already getting quite heavy and awkward, it's going to be 5 x 5 squares and I'm on the 9th out of the 12 patterned squares and have actually started the fourth mitred square since this picture was taken on Tuesday.

I've just spent 2 days clearing more of the junk out opf my flat that has accumulated while I was depressed. I have no real choice but to crack on with that as fast as possible as my landlord wants to install new central heating very soon.

Luckily for me my big sister spent Thursday with me helping me to get more done and dealing with the heating company's surveyor for me as I get flustered by strangers in the flat, the cats just find the highest position they can in the flat and watch, unfortunately my preferred option of hiding under the duvet doesn't really work in the grown up world!

Tuesday, May 31, 2011


The Irish Diamond shawl is growing steadily, I think I've finally grasped the pattern, I can even see where to start the first pattern row each time without having to look at the pattern (although I still double check with the pattern). I like this pattern, it's not terribly complicated but it's a challeng to my less than sharp brain.

This is a variation on the twirly scarves that I was making a few years ago, I added some extra pale lilac to it, the snag is I made it from acrylic which means I can't block the edges to stop them roling up. It was a quick fun knit to make - Dolores from a back issue of Simply Knitting.

The good old potato chip scarf pattern, I want to add tassels to each end, as usual the sewing in of the ends and the finishing off is what gets left as I lose interest once the knitting is done.

This is the first of the winter woolly hats I'm making to go to a homeless shelter - mind you it's been so cold at work the last few weeks I may need it myself. I want to make more in different patterns as part of making my knitting useful, there aren't many people in my life that I can knit for.

Merlin supervising me, he's like all the cats I've ever been permitted to share my life with, he loves to be as high up as possible while he studies me! I'm going to have to cut down a bit on my knitting while I do some frantic restacking of the contents of my flat before they come to survey before they replace my central heating. I hate having workmen in my flat and I have far too much stuff in here - especially the skips of knitting yarn.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Current projects

This is meant to be a zigzag scarf, because it's knitted lengthwise I wasn't sure how long it would turn out and to be honest it's way too short for anything I would want, it may be OK for my great niece though. it's a fun easy pattern to play with so I may make a longer version - especially I just invested in a 120cm long 4mm circular needle!

This is me testing to see if I can knit lace nowadays, I haven't been able to for the last couple of years - my concentration span and short term memory were both completely destroyed by the latest breakdown. Strictly this should be knit in laceweight rather than this 4 ply, but I find it easier to keep track of the pattern in the thicker yarn and so far I'm doing OK with the pattern as a result. It's pretty much a question of rebuilding my confidence in the skills I had before I became ill. This is the Irish Diamond shawl pattern that I tried once before I was sick. It's not a difficult pattern compared to many, I'm enjoying knitting it which is the most important thing right now.

I haven't taken pictures of all the WIP's I have on the go, but as usual I have far too many ! At the last count I have the following.

1) Scarf in Pooch that I bought years ago, I'm debating turning it into a short scarf (it's very thick yarn) and using the left over yarn to make trim for a hat and gloves and adding a button and button hole to the scarf. I'm almost convinced that will be the solution so I've ordered 2 buttons on ebay that should fasten the scarf and add as a trim to the hat. I'll have to find a yarn for the hat and gloves in a lighter weight, before I buy anything new I'll go stash diving first.

2) 5 different clapotis - in various stages of development, I'll take some pictures during the week rather than describing them in detail.

3) A shawl in a blue/green yarn, my old favourite garter stitch shawl with fringing - I bought a kilo of this yarn on ebay about 4 years ago and it's my mindless project, even I can remember to do a yarn over once a row - and if I forget it I can always sneak it in later!

4) Another Christmas tree - I plan on making a few more for home and office, I still haven't sewn up the first tree yet - like many of us I procrastinate with the finishing off of the things that I make!

5) The blanket project in tortoiseshell is plodding along, I've made 4 squares so far, my current design needs 20 squares, but I'm debating alternating with mitred squares in plain yarn as the variegated yarn is a bit busy on the eyes. That would mean buying more yarn rather than using up the stash, but it's a gift so I may do that if I decide it would look better.

6) A simple knit 2 purl 2 rib hat intended as a gift - I'm actually started on my Christmas knitting!

7) 2 mohair scarves being made from the stash, neither of them are in colours I will wear but will probably go into the Christmas gift pile or go to the local women's refuge.

8) I've the rikrak scarf from 'Scarves a knitters dozen' still on the go although I'm not 100% happy with how it's turning out.

9) I'm teaching a colleague how to knit socks on DPN's so I have a sock on my needles although I'm not feeling any sock love at all yet and have hardly touched it, I suspect that at the next lesson my student will be way ahead of me!

10) I'm experimenting with a sweater pattern from Simply Knitting May 2008 but using a different yarn, Spree in I think blueberry - purple/white variegations and I'm not sure if the cable pattern will work - the back is in stocking stitch anyway so I'm doing that first to see if the yarn drapes right.

Apart from the knitting, I did a small amount of slash and destroy gardening today and I'm sticking with the new healthy diet although I am starting to feel like a rabbit!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Sad cat

I'm not sure what has upset Merlin, it may just be me doing a load of cleaning and tidying in my flat for the first time in ages, but when I got home from work yesterday he didn't greet me at the door, he was sulking on top of the boiler in the kitchen. He growled at the man who came to do the gas inspection on Saturday morning and bushed his tail up and showed his teeth - totally out of character for him.
I shall try and spend some cuddle time with him if he wants it and see if that settles him down, he's eating etc OK so I'm not too worried yet.

I'm experimenting again, I have loads of bits of blue/purple/pink yarn so I'm playing with quilt patterns that can be knitted, this log cabin square is obviously the easiest apart from just knitting squares and I'm rather enjoying doing it although it does make a lot of ends.

I've been asked by a work colleague to show her how to knit socks, it's ages since I've made any so I may have to relearn while I teach her.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Busy, busy

I'd hoped to have photographed more of my WIP's this weekend but I spent Friday cleaning the kitchen for a gas inspection on Saturday morning, Saturday sleeping Friday off and then today sorting all the knitting and yarn in my living room into separate bags, they may only be supermarket carier bags but each WIP now has it's own bag and the ones that need a pattern have the pattern in with them!

The square in the picture doesn't look much, but it's an experiment to combine crochet and knitted log cabin to play around with combining textures using only one yarn rather than many - it seems to be working out and I plan on making more and turning them into a lap blanket for my friend's mother who frequently complains of cold legs.

In other news when saw my GP this week my blood sugar figures had improved and I actually came away with very nearly a pat on the head and agreement to cut my antidepressants by 25%. If any remaining UK readers can point me at information/advice/diets that would be helpful to an almost but not quite Type 2 diabetic I'd be very greatful, my current ultra careful diet will only last so long before I get so sick of the sight of salads I go mad and buy a chocolate cake.

My other question after being away from knitting for so long I can't remember my log in details for Ravelry is in 2 parts, why do people think that Elizabeth Zimmerman is so brilliant? I find her patterns incomprehensible and her top down pattern for sweaters to result in hundreds of shuddering children being forced to wear sloping shouldered garments that make them all look drooping shouldered and depressed. The other question is why knit dishcloths? I don't see them as being particularly hygenic, and why knit something pretty to use to wash dirty dishes, you might as well embroider the overalls that are worn to repair the car - or am I missing something?