Finishing frenzy!

Minnie is off the needles and blocking:

And J's sweater is completely finished, and being worn:

He seems to like it a lot, and it suits him very well. It's worth all the 2×1 rib, really*.

Is anyone planning to go to the Woolfest in Cockermouth this weekend? I shall be there for the Saturday – hopefully wearing Minnie!
* Except he doesn't much want his face published in Blogland. Hence the somewhat anonymised photo…

The Socks Do Cambridge

The Cambridge Knitters had a punting trip yesterday, organised by the redoutable Mary. My wonderful Secret Pal Socks went along, and saw some of the more recognisable sights of Cambridge.

The punting trip was chauffeured, which was very luxurious, and a stark contrast to the student punting trips I have previously endured experienced. Rather than everyone fighting over the punt pole for the first 10 minutes, then everyone trying to avoid it for the rest of the trip, all we had to do was sit back, knit, chat and watch the backs of Cambridge drift by, to the accompaniment of a gentle rocking and lapping of water.

Here, the socks can be seen shortly after embarking the punt, relaxing luxuriously near the bare feet of the Pig Wot Knits:

The first major landmark is the Mathematical Bridge, connecting the two parts of Queens College across the river:

Further on, we have the the back of King's College (I'm assured that, whilst taking this photograph, I became the subject of at least two others):

And then very famous Bridge of Sighs:

I'd like to point out at this time that the weather was perfect for a punt trip; warm, but not too hot and not too bright (especially for silly otters who had forgotten both their sunglasses and their hat). It was not, in fact, thundery and overcast as some of these photos would suggest. It's a nice, dramatic effect, though, eh?

We then passed under the bridge that marks Bridge Street:

I'm sure this bridge has an official name, but I don't know it. It's very striking underneath, though, which I'm sure is a fact appreciated by very few people:

….and then we turned round to come back.

On the way back, Mary's husband and daughter were waiting on Garrett Hostel Bridge, to take photos of us passing underneath:

Garrett Hostel Bridge is also known as 'the bridge you can cycle over' and at least one less mentionable name1.

The whole trip took almost exactly an hour, after which we repaired to the cafe in the grad. soc. building. Another hour's knitting saw me more than halfway through the last sleeve of 'Minnie', well fed, and thoroughly amused by convivial knitters.

A fine outing.
1 …but I'll mention it anyway. It is, as previously mentioned, regularly cycled over, frequently by unfit students on poorly maintained bikes. This results, apparently, in a characteristic sequence of noises that go something like "huff, hurr, huff, hmmm, ugh.. ugh.. mmmph… rrggh… oooh…. rrrrrgh….. MMMMmmmphhh… OOOooohhh …." and, as the peak is crested" — aaaaaaahhhhh…..". Hence the Less Mentionable Name of…. Orgasm Bridge.

Spitting distance

I am so close to having two finished objects to show you guys that I can almost taste it. Three, if you include the skirt I've been sewing. Four if you also include the shirt I've altered for myself. But, actually, I don't have anything. Yet.

J's sweater has its sleeves attached and only needs seaming up the sides and under-sleeves. Oh, and I'd like to redo the cast-off on about half the neck, because the tension is uneven. I could have finished that this evening, if I'd worked on it at all.

I'm more than halfway up the second sleeve of 'Minnie'; then, she just needs blocking, seaming and the edging knitted on. Hmmm, maybe I'm not so close to having that ready…

My sari skirt only needs the zip inserted, the waistband finished and the lining hemmed. I could have done that this evening, too, if I'd worked on it.

The shirt only needs its unfinished threads finished. There's no excuse for that.

But I haven't done any of these this evening; I've spent lots of time on the phone, and a lot of time on the computer. So you'll just have to wait. Nyaaah!!! ;P

Bin diving

Good fabric haul yesterday from the Robert Sayles' remnants bin:

That's a metre of hot pink and orange cheesecloth, 100% cotton:

A metre of embroidered 100% silk chiffon:

and 1.4 metres of a rather eyepopping linen:

Hmmm, dining chairs as fabric stands. Must remember that.

Then, for various reasons, I went stash-diving at home and found several balls of Matchmaker Merino DK, all different colours that I'd totally forgotten about:

Does that suit your swap-requirements, Mary??

Dog days…

We know our Kita-pup was born in June, two years ago. So I've decided her official birthday will be June 21st, the solstice. We've had her just over 6 months, and she's settled beautifully and grown from a skinny, frightened, kennel-weary pup to a cheeky, loving, energetic monster. And we wouldn't have her any other way.

The day she came home

It's a tough life…

Grass stains

Happy birthday, Kita-pup, you're now officially 2 years old! And happy Midsummer to those in the northern hemisphere, and Merry Yule to those in the southern.

This ‘secret pal’ thing is awesome…

I'm really enjoying the Secret Pal 8 exchange; I know that my giftee has received her first parcel, and likes it; and today I received my first parcel!

Ooooohh…. Chocolate footballs!

I've been spoilt in two different and equally delightful ways with this parcel; the first foodie, the second knitterly. On the foodie front, we have the following:

In the foreground, the aforementioned chocolate footballs. Do you think that the number of footballs is a prediction of the number of games that England will play in the current World Cup?? Back left, we have some really *delicious* fudgy caramels. Fortunately, J doesn't particularly care for them, so I get the lot! And to the right, a jar of salsa bruschetta – already earmarked for tonight's dinner. As my secret pal aptly says, "some treats for my sweet tooth, and some for my savoury tooth!" She said that on the back of the really sweet card in the middle of that there photo.

And on the knitterly, we have the truly fabulous gift of my first pair of handknitted socks!

I've knit several pairs of socks, but they have all been gifts, as I said in an earlier blog entry. My brilliant pal spotted that, and has sent me some. I love them! They're in Meilenweit Lana Grossa, which I've never seen before, and the colourway shades through red and plum and orange and…. oooh, lovely!

…a perfect fit…

My pal was concerned that it would be too hot to try them on today, but it's the coolest day we've had for a while; and anyway, there is nothing on earth that would have stopped me trying them on as soon as they left the box!

Thankyou so much, Secret Pal, I love this package!!

Holy Blocking Sweater, Batman!

Finally – off the needles, and onto the blocking towels:

To the left, we have the two sleeves, lying cuff-to-cuff, designed to be generously long on someone who is 6 ft 4 and has long arms:

To the right, the front and back of the sweater, already joined at the shoulders by the three-needle bind-off:

The whole damn lot is knit in 2×1 rib, and seems to have taken forever. Now all I have to do is seam it and knit the long, tubular collar. In 2×1 rib. It's a good job I like you, J!

The dog ate my catalogue

My long-awaited, much anticipated samples catalogue from Texere arrived today. Sadly, the only person home to receive the post was Kita. The post is a regular, exciting feature for the pup, and though she's very settled now, she occasionally has Issues if something exciting happens in our absence.

Also, she loves the plastic wrappers that some post arrives in; you know, the thin, plastic ones used to wrap magazines, phone books and… catalogues.

Most of it is, actually, OK. But a few of the pages will not be the same again. And that bundle of yarn in the middle of that picture is samples that currently dont' have places on pages…


Sleeves, sleeves and damned sleeves…

The world seems to be full of sleeves right now. I've done one for Minnie, and one for Lakes, and both of them seem to have taken FOREVER. Rrrrrrgh…….

However, I have learned how to set up my knitting machine, and four methods for casting on (one provisional, three permanent). With any luck, my yarn stash should shrink as a result….

Five things I like about me

Taken from Sereknitty's challenge – not a meme as such. Honest. But why not think of five things about yourself that you are really happy about?

  1. I am smart. Even when I am ill.
  2. I am hugely creative, with a fine imagination and the ability to realise my ideas
  3. People trust me; my friends confide in me, and I can often help
  4. I am always trying to be an even better 'me'. I don't sit on my laurels.
  5. I am a damn good cook.

Hmmm, that felt good! How about you?

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