My Knitting Olympics prize arrived in the mail yesterday morning. The yarn is beautiful and soft and smooshy and gorgeous. The colour is just stunning. Now I need to find something beautiful to knit with it. It's HandMaiden Cashmere 4 Ply - 170m of DK.
I'm looking for something beautiful, for me to wear, that will get some wear in the Brisbane climate. Any ideas?
But for the moment I'm quite happy just to hold it in my hands and stroke it.
My head has been all over the place in the last week. I've been down, after a few too many restless nights up with a sick boy while the Man was overseas, up with my Knitting Olympics competition win, down with some challenges at work, and up with some important things finally going right at work. The Man arrived back yesterday after ten days away, so things should get back to normal soon, but I'm still a bit scatterbrained. My knitting, or more correctly fibrecraft, has probably reflected my state of mind. In the last week I have:
-done a few rows on Margot's remaining sleeve:
-worked on the Ribbon-tied wool vest for my Sister's baby who is due in early May
-continued slowly on the Knitting Olympics Cardi
-spun some yarn
-and worked on a garden.
These are knitted, crocheted, french-knitted and finger-knitted flowers, leaves, gumnuts and vines for a secret project.
My crochet is still clumsy, unskilled and inexact, but I'm enjoying making these flowers. There's no pattern, I'm making them up as I go along, which seems to fit in well with my scattered thinking right now.
Hopefully somewhere in all this muddle I can find an even keel.
There are a few people and things I get all fangirl about - David Tennant, Neil Gaiman, Terry Pratchett, Firefly, and Stephanie Pearl-McPhee, the Yarn Harlot.
Regular readers will know that I recently entered the Knitting Olympics and failed to complete my cardigan despite a gallant effort (if I do say so myself).
Stephanie recently ran a competition for Knitting Olympics entrants, whether they had taken the gold (finished their project) or not, and I entered along with about 2000 other people.
Imagine my utter amazement to discover an email from Stephanie in my inbox this morning telling me that I'd won a prize. And my stunned mullet expression when I went to her blog and realised that not only was it a prize, but it was first prize, a gorgeous skein of cashmere by Handmaiden and a signed copy of her book Free-Range Knitter: The Yarn Harlot Writes Again.
And here is the fangirl bit - I got mentioned on her blog! I feel like I'm famous. If you're interested, my prize and the other winners are mentioned here.(Oh, and if you've got here by following the link from Stephanie's blog, welcome! I hope you enjoy your visit.)
It's more exciting than the day I received a tweet from Neil Gaiman!
When I read the lovely comment from Lauren on my last post, recommending that I try out Portuguese knitting because it works for Christine, who also has bad wrists, my first thought was, uncharitably, not "Brilliant. That sounds great". It was actually. "No, I don't want to learn another way of doing this. I tried continental once and that was an unmitigated disaster. I don't want to be a beginner again, all slow and clumsy with bad tension. I want to whinge and moan and cry for a bit about how hard done by I am and how horrible it is that my body is responding so poorly to the minor challenges I ask of it."
Of course, I calmed down a bit later, while I was nursing my throbbing wrist and staring at a pile of UFO's that were really meant to be finished by now.
I went straight to YouTube and found a video by Andrea Wong, who explained it really well. I have been practicing on a garter stitch square for a charity blanket and I'm starting to get the hang of it. I'm still clumsy and slow and I have bad tension. I really don't like being a beginner again, but I'm recognising it's a necessary evil.
I'm also continuing on with the UFO's, knitting in my old style, but very slowly. I'm getting about 3 rows of the Knitting Olympics Cardi done every day and I finished Margot's first sleeve on the weekend.
In other news, my craft-blogging friend Fenella is opening a craft and knitting shop in Christchurch. She will have a small knitting section with a range of yarns, knitting and felting supplies, books and magazines. It's bricks and mortar to start off with but she expects to go online at some stage. She's asked for advice on which books or magazines and knitting supplies she should consider carrying. My personal magazine list would be the following:
- Interweave Knits
- Debbie Bliss
- Yarn Forward
- The Knitter
On the knitting supplies list I would include:
- stitch markers
- Knit Pro needles
- Namaste Oh Snap pouches (and in fact anything else by Namaste that fits!)
If you have any suggestions of your own or want to find out about the shop, you can contact Fenella via her website http://www.emiliarose.com/ or leave some suggestions in the comments and I will make sure that they get to Fenella.
It's raining here and there is a small lake in our front yard. The forecast says that the rain will continue, potentially for the next week. I hope it is less wet where you are!