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Tag Archives: knitted mitts

it’s not exactly knitting those mitts but it’s doing something

Local wetlands park, one of the delightful nearby lots of paths for off-road walking

Local wetlands park, one of the delightful nearby lots of paths for off-road walking

This reserve is sort of down the bottom of our road, and it’s where Dr B and I did some of our training walk yesterday. I say “bottom” advisedly, since coming home is an uphill business and sufficiently wearing that, once home, I climbed into my compression gear and went straight to bed. For three hours.

Is my knitting progressing? Well, of course it’s not. My boss’s birthday is this week and I sort of half-promised him some fingerless mitts in his footy team’s colours. I found suitable yarn at my LYS and have cast on for the first mitt. But that’s truly as far as I’ve gone because the main colour is black and I cannot see to knit black at night, no matter how strong a lamp I use. Could I have done some today before the light faded? Perhaps; but realistically, no.

However, if I do a few hours a day and bits here and there, they’ll probably be ready by Thursday. Whaddaya reckon my chances are? Fnigres corsesd!

 
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Posted by on June 21, 2015 in Health, Knitting

 

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getting round to things

Eldest Niece's mitts have finally left my hands and I hope they'll soon be keeping hers warm.

Eldest Niece’s mitts have finally left my hands and I hope they’ll soon be keeping hers warm.

Today, the Aunts, two of the Nieces and I joined a fundraising walk, a gentle 4 Km circuit beginning and ending at a beachside venue familiar to me from the occasional Audax Christmas dinner. I don’t think any of us came remotely close to working up a sweat. No matter. We did it and enjoyed ourselves. Also, it provided an opportunity for me to hand over Youngest Niece’s birthday cowl (crocheted using Moda Vera Ambruni yarn) as well as the fingerless mitts for Eldest Nephew (knitted using Country Tartan 8 ply yarn) and Eldest Niece (photographed above and knitted using Bendigo’s Murano yarn, nominally an 8 ply). Middle Niece is pondering her options and will probably put in an order for one or the other article for her birthday in June 🙂

Meanwhile, I’m about four stitches away from completion of unpicking the sticky beanie (knitted using Moda Vera Bouvardia yarn) and hope to be back on the knitting of it by tonight (the four stitches are where I’ve woven in the ends, so I’m finding them particularly tricky). I won’t complete it tonight but it will only take a couple of evenings of work (it’s knitted in the round so there’s no seaming to contend with) to have it where it needs to be: ready for popping in the post to the friend whose head it’s intended to cover. Then, and I’ve promised myself it will be only then, I can make a start on some socks for Dr B.

And that’s as much of a plan as I can wrap my head around at the moment. Work is manically busy and we continue to have computer problems on the home front. I hope you’re faring better, whatever your weather and whatever you’re getting round to 🙂

 

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they weren’t meant to be mine

What cold weather will do to good intentions? See you pilfer mitts intended for someone else :)

What cold weather will do to good intentions? See you pilfer mitts intended for someone else 🙂

That cold Easter Monday I mentioned and the “now I have some of my own” Murano mitts to which I alluded? Uuh, yeah, it was genuinely cold and neither Dr B nor I could get warm. We were both doing some computer work. He reached for the colourful mitts I’d made him using Jester yarn (Ravelled but not yet blogged). Me? Well, I pinched some.

Over the years, I’ve made something like 15 pairs of fingerless mitts for other people and some for myself that have ended up being given away. These weren’t meant to be mine. I made them for someone else. But, as they were meant to be a surprise, the intended recipient won’t know I’ve pinched them. And I really, truly can and will make her another pair.

In the meantime, I have warm, comfortable fingers while I type and, believe me, that’s a first 🙂 Bendigo’s Murano to the fore again, this time in a lovely shades-of-purple colourway (it looks blue but it’s definitely purple).

Just call me the yarn thief 🙂

 
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Posted by on April 12, 2015 in Knitting

 

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a good afternoon’s work

Two afternoons, really, and there's still a thumb to finish

Two afternoons, really, and there’s still a thumb to finish

Hello, again, I hope you had an enjoyable Easter weekend? Ours was sunny and delightful until Monday. Then the temperature dropped (so much so that we caved in and turned on our space heater) and the skies opened. It was cold. It was wet. There was hail. Winter announced its loud arrival. Of course, today has been warm and sunny 🙂

Given the combination of unfriendly weather and a public holiday, if you had fingerless mitts with a looming deadline, wouldn’t you have stoked them up while watching La Terra Trema? (Not the best choice, because I really needed to read the subtitles!) I did and made one mitt. This afternoon I’ve knitted the second one to the point where all I have to do is 10 very short rows on that second thumb. Nothing to it. Then it’s on with the blocking and Eldest Niece should have them for her birthday.

Once again, I’m using Bendigo Woollen Mills’ Murano yarn, this time leftovers from the beanie I made for Dr C way back when. It’s perhaps not the best yarn for something like this, in the sense that it has a tendency to felt and it pills something dreadful after a few wears – meaning that it might not be as long-lasting as a harder-wearing yarn like Cleckheaton’s Country Tartan – but the colourways are such fun and the resulting mitts certainly very warm (I finally have some for myself).

The next question is, should I make a shopping bag to accompany them or just gift-wrap them in paper instead?

 
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Posted by on April 11, 2015 in Knitting

 

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just more fingerless mittens

Already old and well-loved in 2010

Already old and well-loved in 2010

You see those pretty blue mitts? They’re knitted with acrylic yarn to Twinset Ellen’s pattern and were originally intended for me. But the pair I’d made for YoungB having stretched so much they were almost too big for Dr B, the blue pair – logically and obviously – went to a worthier home. Cheap and acrylic though the yarn might be, it’s wearing well and still keeping YoungB’s hands warm in Italy.

Modelled by Dr B but now gracing YoungB's smaller hands

Modelled by Dr B but now gracing YoungB’s smaller hands

And that second pair? Ravelled here, for full details. YoungB admired those I was making for Eldest Aunt’s retirement present, so I made a similar pair for him: same yarn, same needle size, same stocking stitch base pattern, though I added a couple of panels of ribbing for his, and same thumb treatment. The larger number of stitches meant that his stripes came closer to matching and I knitted the body of both mitts before doing either of the thumbs to ensure that. YoungB says these are fantastic. He’s a great recipient, always appreciative; which is probably why I didn’t mind giving him the blue pair in the first place 🙂

 
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Posted by on March 26, 2015 in Knitting

 

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there probably is a time for everything

You might recall I said I’d been doing a reasonable amount of crochet and knitting while my computer was not working. One such item was this pair of fingerless mitts for a work colleague. They started out a couple of years ago as a birthday present for someone else but plans changed – as they so often do – and the mitts languished, awaiting their moment. I’ve often said I don’t frog projects when they come to a grinding halt, just put them away for a while, which sometimes works in my favour if I need something in a hurry.

The building where I work has airconditioning that’s unpredictably crazy, but errs on the side of glacial most of the year. When birthday presents were mentioned, mitts seemed a sensible notion and these fitted the bill in many ways, mostly that they were about 50% done, the colours were right and I had a couple of weekends available for knitting the remainder, weaving in the surprisingly large number of ends and allowing plenty of time for blocking; or so I thought.

just the shot to keep your fingers functioning in a chilly chamber

just the shot to keep your fingers functioning in a chilly chamber

Dr B was good enough to photograph them for me, though you’d probably agree that we need to work on our layout and presentation. 😉 The pattern is one I’ve used many times, knitted using Lincraft Cosy Wool, a pure wool 8 ply yarn, on size UK10/3.25 mm needles. The plain yarn is a navy colourway, the variegated something I thought would play nicely with that (and whose ball bands have long since vanished, so I’m unable to provide detail of either colour or dye lot). As it turned out, they weren’t quite ready for the birthday breakfast – being still damp as they blocked in the spare bedroom – but I was able to hand them over on the following Monday morning at work with the usual accompanying lavender bag. Their time had finally come 🙂

 
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Posted by on March 24, 2015 in Knitting

 

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do cups runneth over?

At the interstate regatta, at least as far as YoungB was concerned, the singles competition was important – he didn’t progress to finals but was pleased to have improved his time by about 30 seconds since our state championships – but the main game was the lightweight men’s IV, in preparation for the Penrith Cup competition that will take place during National Championships later this month. How did they fare? They missed out on a podium finish but, all in all, their coach was very pleased. They didn’t – and, indeed, don’t – have the same amount of race experience, and certainly none against that level of competition, as the other crews on the course, most of which contained national-level athletes. Even so, they were in third place right up to the 1500 metre mark (I was following it in real time on the computer and cheering loudly all the while). They placed fifth by about half a canvas. You can imagine that they were a little crushed after having started so well, but they’ve had that experience now and know what to expect for Nationals and the Cup in March. They’ll be out for blood, I expect; and the reputation of the state will be at stake.

As to jungle parties? I don’t know why I do it to myself, really, but I stayed up most of the Friday night sewing! Having the house to myself meant that I could but it hadn’t been my intention to do so. I went to bed a few times, but my mind was racing along at light speed, trying to solve problems. And when I found a solution, I had to implement it at once. My mantra, however, irrespective of problem or solution nutted out, was, “This is a $6 fancy dress costume, not couture sewing,” that being the fabric cost, not the value of time invested.

Of course I had equipment problems. My overlocker decided to throw in the towel. I must have lost nearly an hour doing a complete re-thread or three, but in the end I decided that more time spent there would be truly wasted and did most of the work on my sewing machine. It doesn’t take much longer to do that, I suppose, but the seams aren’t finished neatly (I could have taken extra time to do tidy seam finishes but that didn’t feature in my plan; that would rank as couture), and because of overlocking problems the side seams pull slightly. Neither is a major concern for a wear-once garment, I assure you; although it’s sufficiently well hemmed and put together that I could drag it out for a family dinner if I so chose. Or possibly a rowing presentation night.

Because I was travelling to the party with Youngest Aunt and Uncle, I had to meet their departure timetable (my own would have allowed me a bit more sleep, I think). Youngest Aunt had said they planned to go as Tarzan and Jane – at which, Dr B had suggested that I should, therefore, go as the monkey; he lives, though I don’t know why! – but in the end Youngest Aunt wore a leopard-print dress she’d had in her wardrobe from years ago and Youngest Uncle added a jungle-themed T-shirt – genuinely from Botswana – to his shorts and they were suitably attired. Youngest Aunt and I reckoned we almost matched, except that I’d spent some considerable time getting my hair to a state where lavish application of product would ensure that I could rightly consider myself the Wild Woman from Borneo. (It was what we were told when we were kids and we hadn’t brushed our hair, so I thought it would be both sufficiently jungly and reasonably achievable.)

Sorry to say, there are no photos of me and my outfit. I’ve sent out an SOS to other family photographers and while I’m hopeful of getting something at some point, I haven’t so far had any donations to the case. It’s true that the dress on its own is not terribly exciting or appealing, although the funnel neckline is rather fetching. I like that little piece of silliness. And I confess to having gone back and sewn the side seams so that they don’t pull quite so much. I mean, I know myself well enough to know that I’ll wear it again, no matter that it started life as a fancy dress outfit.

There’s been a lot more rowing. The state squad for Nationals has been announced, and YoungB has held his seat for the Lightweight Men’s IV. It’s the first time in seven years that our state has sent a crew for Penrith Cup comps, we’re told, so that’s exciting in itself (if they weren’t up to scratch, they wouldn’t have been given the nod). There was a presentation evening with wine and cheese sort of stuff (hence my suggestion that the leopard-skin dress might be all right; but Dr B insisted that wouldn’t be necessary because they’re rowers not ponces). What was nominally the last of the Schools regattas before Head of the River was lengthened by inclusion of competition for the remaining state championship races, those held over from the extremely hot second day of state champs (you know, when it was generally reckoned rowers were wimps, however sensible). We had a country regatta in the meantime there, and YoungB always enjoys those (we do, too) because they have a completely different atmosphere. He raced hard and was exhausted by the end of the day.

We had an OS friend staying with us – herself a former rower, so she’s always good value for YoungB because they can talk tech and be on precisely the same page; I understand a bit more than Dr B because I’ve done some rowing, but I can’t give advice from a position of expertise – and that’s been a lot of fun in all sorts of ways (including some long lunches at local eateries). We’ve all exercised together and learnt a few new tricks to keep the weight loss going. There have also been employment-related interviews of various sorts. In a word, we seem to have been doing a fair bit of rushing about and it’s sobering to realise that autumn is officially here and uni term has already begun. (YoungB probably feels as if he hasn’t had quite the break many of his mates have enjoyed because of the intense chemistry summer school he was obliged to complete and the amount of rowing training he’s been doing.)

More rowing and more jobs to apply for and more rushing about all over the place have all taken their toll on our patience and energy. YoungB was the other night ready for bed when he came home at about 7 o’clock (that was quietly reminiscent of a time when he was small and did actually fall asleep at the table).  Dr B and I are barely managing to put our feet one after the other. Oh, yeah, I think our cups runneth over all right, but with exhaustion rather than elation. Having said that, it was very heartening to see the state crews announced and officially presented to their adoring fans (parents, for the most part!) and not a little exciting to realise that YoungB can now claim to have been a team-mate with some of our local Olympians, who are also getting a (or in their case, another) state zootie.

On a positive and non-rowing-related note, the Maine Morning Mitts finally reached their intended recipient – ahead of her needing them, she assures me; I’ve needed some plenty of times already but it is probably the case that we keep much earlier hours – and she loves them and seems to think they were a lot of hard work. I have no intention of disillusioning her on that score. 😉

I’ve also sewn up half a dozen or so lavender bags for Nonna. I don’t know where hers disappear to, but no matter how many I send, she never seems to have any, whether I make them with loops to hang in the wardrobe or simply ones that she can throw into the drawers where she stores her undies. Still, that’s little enough effort and I try to make a couple extra – I did – so that I replenish our own stocks, which tend to dwindle because I have a terrible habit of taking them to give to other people.

If this has been a little more all over the place than usual, it’s a fair reflection of the way things are. Messy but busy. Whatever your place looks like, I hope you’ve been able to get lots of knitting and sewing done and that, if you, too, are involved with sporting folk, you’ve thoroughly enjoyed cheering their participation and saluting their achievements. Now I’d better get back to work or the house will probably fall apart around us!

PS: I’m not at my usual computer and I haven’t been able to scavenge any appropriate photos. 😦

 
 

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