Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Stupidly busy

Recently life has been something of a whirlwind and I'm only just catching up with it all.

Last month:

I started a new job
I didn't go to Switzerland because of said job
and I turned 23

Last week:
was spent in the Scottish Highlands - walking, knitting and eating lots of tasty food with some of the loveliest people I know. It was the most amazing, and much needed, week off.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Lovely crafty weekend

Check out my lovely new cushion cover, made yesterday with some Amy Butler fabric that I had stashed away.

I quite enjoyed the process of piecing the fabrics together. I didn't let myself deliberate too much over what went where, otherwise it would have taken weeks! The back is a little busy...

Today I made some fairy cakes for my Aunt's birthday - Happy Birthday AJ! The cakes have splodges of black cherry jam in the middle, yum yum. Making the little cocktail stick flags was quite fun, I'm pretty pleased how they turned out.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Brownie Traditions

I really enjoy being a Brownie leader.

Obviously it is highly important every activity is properly risk assessed - this particular risk assessment was pretty tasty.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Finally finished

Having spent four days travelling on trains last week I got a fair amount of knitting done. I took an old unfinished project with me and now it is finished. Excellent.

I think it looks rather good, apart from being one stitch out on one part of the pattern on the left hand side (middle photo). This has happened to me twice now, but the first Ishbel I made doesn't have this mistake. It can most likely be put down to my inability to read things properly.

I used scrumptious 4ply in Oyster on 4mm needles, it's beautifully soft and has a lovely sheen. This was supposed to be for my Grandma, but I'm not sure I can give it away! It's lovely.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011


I could win awards for my ability to procrastinate. I think it must be innate. I couldn't stop the urge to knit today, so every half an hour I had to take a break from reading and knit a couple of rows. It's nice to have a reward every now and then, and in turn my Skylark cardy is coming along quite nicely!

So whilst today has been quite productive, I'm still yet to plan tomorrow's revision. Instead I'm looking through the photos I've take in recent weeks.

This cake plonked on my dusty bedside table was delicious. I didn't follow the recipe to the letter just added and substituted what I found in the kitchen. The icing was lovely but the recipe made vast quantities. A little dollop was all I needed. 

I've been going on lots of coastal walks recently as the weather has been pretty good. The photo above is of Tynemouth Pier lighthouse. I love the colour of the North Sea this time of year, it's lovely to walk along and hear the rumbly splashes of the waves.

Lovely buttons

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Time seems to pass me by

The past few weeks have been spent;

cycling away anxiety and taking in the views;

attempting to untangle sock yarn;

volunteering in lovely surroundings;

and painting my room, a beautiful shade of french grey.

I really enjoyed the process of re-decorating and it's lovely to be able to display some of my creations on the wall.

Next week brings two three(!!) incredibly different and difficult interviews on two consecutive days. Yuck. Bring on the revision! Long division and microbial expression systems here I come...

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

[Not so] Instant Gratification

Before Christmas I had to urge to knit myself a cardigan. I didn't want it to take forever, ideally just a couple of days. I wanted instant gratification. This is not a feeling I usually get for handknit items, I don't mind if things take forever as long as I'm enjoying the process.

I settled on a pattern, Veera's Modern Garden. A beautiful pattern, which I think is one of the best chunky knits I've seen. I had a lovely image in my head of what it was going to be like, chunky, woolly and light grey with large white buttons. Perfect for layering during the winter and wrapping up warm on chilly days. It was going to be the best cardigan ever. 

My lovely local yarn shop didn't have the shade of Rowan Big Wool I fancied. I decided spending so much money on a shade I wasn't too keen on probably wasn't such a good idea and that's when I spotted Stylecraft's chunky acrylic yarn. It felt soft to touch, you could machine wash it and  there was a colour called charcoal, it seemed ideal. Better still it was about the 1/3 of the price of my original. woolly choice. I was seduced, that had to be my yarn. In my head this all made perfect sense, but my heart was saying why don't you wait and order the colour you want, in the fibre you love. My impatience won through; I had to knit this cardigan as soon as was physically possible.

So, I bought the yarn.

It was only as I started knitting I felt guilty. The thing is, I love natural fibres. They are fantastic. I don't think many fibres can top the amazing properties of wool. Not to mention the fact wool is a sustainable, renewable resource, which with proper care will last a lifetime. I want more of this fantastic fibre in my life! The colour of my yarn was a constant reminder I was knitting with a yarn produced from oil, the more I knitted the more the wool felt plasticky and ropey. Yuck. Not the pleasurable knitting experience I was after.  Another thing about acrylic is that it's hard to block. I found this highly frustrating! It's so springy and without heat setting it just goes back to shape it was before. I think knitting this cardigan has really made me realise how I much I enjoy making garments for myself and also how much I enjoy the process of looking after the items too.

In the end, I have a lovely cardigan made in a fibre I dislike a lot. I can't fault Veera's design, it's fantastic.

As soon as I can afford to I'm going to order some lovely wool, in the right colour and re-use the amazing coconut shell buttons I currently have to make myself the cardigan I originally wanted.

[Note to self: Lindsay, please don't buy synthetic fibres again. You don't like them, they only frustrate you.]

Saturday, January 15, 2011


The first two weeks of January have gone like a flash. Somewhere in the aftermath of the festive period and amongst the stress of job and University applications, I managed to lose all interest in knitting and creating. Now things have started to slow down again, my creativity is returning. 

I have grand plans for this year: I would like to make myself a dress. I've been told I should knit a pair of socks. Most of all, I would like to get over my fear of seaming handknits.

Seaming is something I've never really mastered, I always thought my seams were bulky and not very pretty to look at. Because of this, I've always prefered to knit in the round. This needs to change! 

I have a lovely collection of knitting books. I own four Kim Hargreaves books. Four! And out of these books I've made one garment. One! It was a chunky cropped cardigan about three or four years ago. I've never worn it.

Kim's books contain so many beautiful patterns, but these are beautiful patterns that require seaming. I've plumped up the courage and cast on for Skylark from the most recent book, Cherished. It's going well so far. Fingers crossed the seaming will go well too!