Sunday, 15 January 2012

OMG! So much dust!

Hello?! Anyone there?

I didn't realise I hadn't blogged since August! Why did nobody tell me?

Admittedly I'm not crafting as much as I'd like to. I work until 6pm everyday and when I come home I just flump on the sofa. Weekends are mostly devoted to household chores.

Work is good though. I've been promoted and as a result I'm following there move to a town 40km away. I had to buy a car which we got on Friday, on my birthday. The car acquisition went fine but I'm not yet allowed to drive it as I'm not insured with my French driving license. I've requested my Dutch one but it can take 2 to 3 weeks to arrive. I really hope it arrives sooner than 3 weeks. The work move is in 2 weeks!

On to the crafty side of life. The cotton scarf based on the Lacy Baktus is still on the needles and hasn't seen the life of day for a while.

I have a pair of Ampersand socks which I don't think I've showed you all. I'm on the gusset of the second sock.

IMG_8832.jpg

The only other things on the needles is a Swallowtail shawl in Malabrigo Silky Merino in the Feather Teal colourway that I started just before Christmas. It'll be a gift for my mother-in-law whenever it's ready.

IMG_8857.JPG

I have a new nephew arriving in February and I'm planning a quilt for him. I've never quilted. I'm not quite sure what I'm doing but I'll give it a go for sure. It's not going to be ready for when the baby arrives because I haven't started it. As a little present in the meantime I'm making a couple a tag blankets for him and his big brother. Here is the first one I made this afternoon.

IMG_8852.jpg

I saw something similar in the shops for close to 20 euro so I decided to make my own. A couple of cheap towels, some fabric from the stash (this one is from Ikea) and some ribbons and done!

IMG_8854.jpg

IMG_8856.jpg

I will try to be better again at blogging. I wish all of you had a good start to the new year.

Sunday, 14 August 2011

Holidays are over

Today is the last day of my holidays. Tomorrow it's back to work. That said I had a great time on holidays. We went to London for a few days where we visited the Tower of London. It was quite fun and we managed to get there early enough so that we beat the crowds.

IMG_8767.jpg

We also went to Tate Modern museum. I was a bit disappointed. Modern art can be a bit hit or miss with me and there was more of the miss kind that of the hit kind. The good thing about museums in London is that they are generally free. Oh, and I stumbled on some knitting art. That was a hit, obviously!

IMG_8772.JPG IMG_8775.JPG IMG_8779.JPG

We also went for walk in Kensington gardens where we saw the Albert monument and got a good view of the Royal Albert Hall.

IMG_8785.jpg

IMG_8783.JPG

I had decided that I wanted to go to Loop. The yarn shops around here are quite disappointing and there were a couple of yarns that I wanted to fondle.

IMG_8801.JPG

After a while of going back and forth I finally settled on 8 skeins of Quince & co Lark in the Twig colorway to make a cardigan for myself. It's a slightly rosy brown which is just gorgeous.

IMG_8802.JPG

I also got some buttons to go with the yarn. I wished there was such a yarn shop nearby so I could go there and fondle yarn at my leisure.

IMG_8804.JPG

While walking down Camden passage I found a petticoat. I was looking for one to go with the dress for the wedding I'm attending soon. I just saw it hanging from the outside of the shop. So I bought it. Here's the fabric I'm going to use for the dress.

IMG_8794.JPG

While in London, I also went to Waterstones and was really reasonable. I only bought another New Covent Garden Soup Company recipe book, a recipe book of scones (my bf really wanted scones) and a knitting book. It's Knitalong. It's not only a pattern book but the stories in it are really good so I'm glad I got it.

IMG_8807.jpg

After London we went for a few days to visit my parents and packed some more stuff to bring here. We couldn't bring much but my sewing machine finally made the trip. I'm just so happy to have it again. We couldn't bring the case though so I'll have to sew one myself.

I also found some of my knitting mojo back and started knitting a rectangular version on the Lacy Baktus using the second ball of Color Changing Cotton.

Straight lacy baktus

It's a Sinterklaas/Christmas present for my sister-in-law. It knits up nice and quickly and I still have a few months to go.

I'm hoping to be a better blogger now that I have my sewing machine back and that my knitting mojo seems to be back too.

Monday, 1 August 2011

I am a bad blogger!

I'm going on holidays for a week from tomorrow and I realise what a terrible blogger I've been lately. My knitting mojo as disappeared a bit and I hope it will pick up again soon. I've taken two new projects with me: a rectangular version of the lacy baktus and some Ampersand socks.

The sewing of my friend's bridesmaid's dress as taken a lot of my time. It is well on track. The two skirts layers are built and the bodice is built. I just need to make the fiddly sleeves and finish assembling. My own dress for the wedding is not at all started but I'm not fretting.

Work still tires me a lot. It's not a difficult job per se (customer service by email) but it is draining mentally because, let's be honest, some people are stupid and some are pig-headed and some are even insulting. It's so nice when we get a nice email that we generally read it aloud to the whole team. My job will be moving locations in January and I'm not following them. The new location is about 50km away and that's a bit much for that kind of job. So I'll be job hunting again come September. I had hoped I'd get at least a year or two before starting again.

In good news I got a really nice package for the FoPASS swap. When I opened it, the first thing I saw was the bunny nugget!

IMG_8760.jpg

The rest of the package was equally gorgeous.

IMG_8762.jpg

I posted my next parcel this morning.

I'll see you all back after my holidays hopefully with more blogging!

Monday, 20 June 2011

Let's play catch up!

I have been a really bag blogger lately. I'm finding it harder and harder to combine studying Dutch, working and taking care of the household. Luckily the studying is almost finished so then I'll only have work and home to juggle and that should me manageable.

I did finish some knitting recently and I'm counting then towards the Knit Girllls' Stash Dash. (You have to knit 5k until mid-August or so.) I'm well on my way for that.

The first project to count was a little Panda bear for a friend. I didn't have a panda pattern so I adapted Otto by Ysolda Teague. I'm still not convinced that it looks like a panda but my friend loves it and that's what counts>

IMG_8730.jpg

The second project is the Commission Hidcote Garden Shawl. It is beautiful and ginormous! It's 200cm across and 123cm down the spine. I just need to pack it up and send it to its new owner. It was a real pleasure to knit it.

IMG_8735.JPG

The final project I've completed is my Citron. That thing had been on my needles for 5 months and it was sucking the life out of me! I had intended to add more sections but I finally decided against it. I finished the edging (2 rows short) and barely started the second ball. It looks lovely but I don't want to even have to knit another one of those! It is not blocked and I don't intend to block it.

IMG_8750.jpg

The next project that'll be on my needles is going to be a Crown Prince Square Shawl as a wedding present for a friend.

Sunday, 8 May 2011

Is anyone still out there?

I know, shame on me for not posting in over a month! One of the reasons is that I'm still finding it a bit difficult to adjust to the new work rhythm and when I get home from work my brain has generally turned to mush from answering emails from customers all day.

Knitting is still happening albeit slowly. I'm still working on the commission shawl. The rows are long and I started beading the last section, which doesn't help with the speed.

IMG_8725.jpg

This thing is going to be huge once blocked. I think I'll need to buy a second set of foam tiles!

IMG_8723.JPG

I just realised that I never showed you the little reversible toy that I knitted for Easter. It's a pattern by Susan B. Anderson and was a lot of fun to knit.

Mini reversible Duck & Bunny

I made some modifications to the patternn, mainly to avoid seaming. So I knit the body in one piece and picked up stitches for the feet of the duck and ears of the bunny. The only things that I seamed were the heads. I'd really like to find a good video demonstrating whipstitching elements of a knitted toy as I'm completely clueless when it comes to that.

Finally, I finished my FoPASS square for this month but I can't show it to you all. It's a surprise. Plus, it's not blocked. I'm waiting for the kitchen floor to finish drying so that I can get it to soak.

Tuesday, 29 March 2011

This post contains good news!

First off, yesterday I had a Dutch language test following the intermediate course to check that I could now follow the advanced course. I got the results by email today and I aced it! Top marks for all 4 areas of testing (reading, writing, listening and speaking).

The second good piece of news I got today is that I have a job! A few weeks back I went to a temp agency to see if they had anything that could be suitable for me. The lady said she'd enquire around and would let me know. The next day she called and said she had something and would send my CV to the company. Following that I had an interview 2 weeks ago and got a call today that I have the job!

It's a customer service representative job, in French and all by emails, so it's really good for me who don't like phones! I'll be doing 20 hours a week until my course is finished and will probably go full time after that.

My bf just went out again to buy some celebratory cake or snack. We'll see what he brings back.

A little update on the commission piece I'm knitting. I'm chart 5, the last of the wild flower part and have less than 10 rows to do on that and then I'll be on the more geometric part.

My commissioner wants some beading so I went and bought a few samples to try out. I knitted a swatch so that she could see the different beads in context.

IMG_8685.jpg

From top to bottom: matte red beads (slightly too big), silver lined clear red beads, AB coated red beads and silver lined clear beads.

My favourites are the clear red beads and the AB coated ones. My bf's favourites are the clear red ones and those are the ones that my commissioner chose. They look really lovely. They are the smallest and most fiddly to bead on though! ;) I'll soon be doing some calculations to see how much I need to buy. I reckon that I still need about 1000 beads even though I'm only beading the last pattern.

Friday, 25 March 2011

LAMMIES!

After reading in the newspaper that the local petting zoo had new born lambs, I just couldn't resist and had to pay them a visit.

IMG_8665.JPG

They are so small and cute! I think I must be the only adult without a child in tow that visit petting zoos that often.

IMG_8667.JPG

Of course I didn't only pay a visit to the lambs, I visited all the animals!

Lambs at the petting zoo