I crocheted a sweater for a friend who is due to give birth in about 3 weeks. I made it extra large, as she is on target for a 9lb+ baby, and I wanted it to be big enough for some time. When I volunteered at the thrift store we used to get so many unworn newborn sized baby clothes as the baby had grown so fast that size didn’t fit any more when they were only 2 months old!

So I knitted the sweater below. It’s a fairly simple pattern, all in doubles (or single crochet as you say in North America) with extra long loops every 4 rows. Here you see it when I finished it on the train, you can see the person who was sitting opposite me reading their newspaper.

So I excitedly wrapped it in brown paper and posted it to her.  And waited. And waited.

2 weeks later now IT HASN’T ARRIVED. I am SO ANNOYED about this. I am going to make my friend another of these sweaters, but that doesn’t replace the one the mail took. Grrrrrrrrrr.


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Colorado yarn haul

I bought a considerable quantity of yarn on my holiday in Colorado. I went to both the very cutely named Lambshoppe in Denver and Stash Yarns in Castle Rock.

Here’s a photo of my haul (taken on the spare bed in the hotel room):

The photo isn’t great but these are all yarns produced in the USA. The one to the front left is a jumbo fleece type yarn, the two skeins in middle front are a tweed grey and white dk (8 ply), and the black one to front right is another jumbo yarn, I’d never seen anything like it before. Behind are some sock yarns. I think this will more than suffice for my Christmas present knitting, which starts as soon as I finish my current project. (This is my excuse for indulging myself to the point of buying this much yarn…).

Lambshoppe is the largest non-department-store yarn shop I have ever encountered – we just don’t have independent yarn shops this size over here. Probably because people in the US are much more interested in crafts in general than most people in the UK. Stash in Castle Rock is smaller but is fabulously decorated. Here’s a knitted spider on one of the ceiling beams (yes I asked permission before taking the photo).

The whole shop is just wonderful like that, they also sell knitted donuts!

I also bought a few crochet magazines as these are impossible to get hold of over here without ludicrous airmail shipping costs. But I’m not telling you what I want to make from these as a number of Christmas gift ideas are to be found within :).

Oh, and here are Buffalo Bill’s boots:


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I know I haven’t updated this in weeks, and I’m sorry. I’ve been on holiday and other things, including attending my cousin’s wedding. As the wedding was in the west of Ireland, I crocheted a shrug to go with my outfit in case it got chilly.


This is made with 100% black cotton dk (8 ply) yarn, the pattern is the Still Waters Shrug by Ellen Gormley and is available as a Ravelry download. Here’s the finished article:



Yes that’s me wearing it. I am not doing the Macarena, I’m showing off the sleeves. The pattern is very simple – you crochet a long rectangle in the stich pattern. You then sew the long edges together starting at either end to make the sleeves, and the rest wraps around your shoulders.  What I like about this pattern is that it’s not just a simple shell stitch – it uses front and back post stitches to give it a 3D effect, so the shells stand out on the right side of the fabric.

I am terribly behind with reading all your blogs – I promise to catch up on these soon!

Right now I am sewing together a sweater for a baby – but I managed to set in one of the sleeves the wrong way round – again. So, hopefully tomorrow I will rip that seam and re-do it…

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I haven’t posted much, because I’ve been so busy with a lot of other things, including some home improvement projects, that I have done hardly any knitting or crochet at all. However, this has been remedied with the purchase of some baby sweater patterns  from Ravelry.

I can’t tell you who these are for yet as it’s a surprise, but I am going to enjoy making them (in 10% acrylic, for easy washing – the acryclic yarn from Patons at John Lewis, double knitting weight, light grey and beige). I’m also finishing a shrug for my cousin’s wedding (crocheted, the Still Waters shrug by user gocrochet on ravelry).

However, today at the Museum of Scotland, I discovered they have Dolly the Sheep – the world’s first ever cloned animal. Dolly died at the age of 6 and she is on display at the museum here – and has a rather nice wooly fleece:

Here’s her wikipedia page:



I promise not to fill this blog up with photos of sheep, but of yarn and things made of it instead.  Yay for sheep and the yarn produced from their fleece!


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I am sheep, purveyor of yarn :)

My mum took this photo of one of my dad’s sheep:

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Toddler cardigan

In case you’re wondering why I posted so much in 2 days, it’s because I’ve been catching up on a backlog of things I’ve made over the past 2 years – I’ve been meaning to start this blog for ages.

Anyway here’s the latest thing I’ve made – a crochet cardi for my niece, who is almost 1.5 years old. I made this to the 24 month size in the pattern. The yarn is 100% soya viscose, made by Rowan. I can’t remember the name. I bought it at Hobbycraft in Fort Kinnaird.

The pattern is based on a rather tricky bobble, where you crochet a treble but don’t complete it, then crochet 4 others around its base. It’s very tricky to begin with as you need to maintain a very loose tension, but this makes getting the needle through difficult. In addition, the yarn was really splitty. AND the pattern had loads of ridiculous mistakes in it (if you tell me to crochet 39 chain, and then give me a line of 35 stitches in the next row, I am not happy). Never mind, the cardi turned out well.

I also modified the pattern – this was originally a cardi where the left and right front don’t overlap but come together via  a ribbon in front, instead I added several vertical rows of dc on either side and added conventional buttons. You can see that in places the bobble pattern is a bit erratic – this is due to the errors in the pattern.

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Knitting Bag and Purse

In 2009 I decided to knit myself a bag to carry my knitting in, as I was fed up with plastic bags being endlessly pierced by needles. I bought 3 skeins of Manos Del Uruguay multi-coloured yarn from K1 Yarns in Edinburgh (yes I like M Del U yarn, why do you ask? 🙂 and knitted a bag with i-cord strap, and a contrasting panel made of Rowan Big Wool. I then felted it in the washing machine.

The Manos yarn felted like a dream, the Rowan less so. Anyway here it is:

The picture isn’t great I know. But you can see how the yarn colourway felted really nicely, and where I had to go back and get skein number 3 from a different dye lot!

I used the same yarn to make a smaller purse for my German penpal, Steffi. I don’t have a photo of the purse but here’s the felted fabric after it came out of the washer (1 skein this time):

Again, this yarn patterns very nicely. They make it in several colourways. A friend has knitted a cardi for her daughter from this as well, same colourway, and it’s lovely. An expensive yarn, but well worth it. K1 sell it.


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Bedspread Mania #2

This next bedspread is based on Jan Eaton’s fabulous book, 200 crochet squares. The book contains a large number of patterns for, you guessed it, crocheted squares of all kinds. What I did was make some squares 4 times the size recommended in the book, others twice,  actual size, and half. I made a huge number of these while on holiday in various places and on the train. The yarn was all bought on ebay. This time only some of it is 100% cotton, a lot of the yarns are cotton/synthetic mixes. These weren’t cones of machine yarn, but various lots of 50g and 100g balls bought cheaply from various sellers. I guess you could wash this on 30C.

Here’s a shot with husband asleep underneath in the spare room:

The cats are also quite keen on it (they usually never sit this close without fighting):


Someone definitely likes it:

Although not everyone, all the time:

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Hot Water Bottle

This is a hot water bottle cover I made for my mother out of Artesano Alpaca DK weight (8 ply). It looks a bit weird as it is being blocked and is in the process of drying. Parts are still soaking wet. It’s a nice, soft, fluffy yarn, ideal for this sort of project. The cover is mostly stocking stitch, with accents of moss stitch.

The pattern is from Aneeta Patel’s Knitty Gritty, but although she suggests knitting this flat, I knitted it in the round, adding the moss stitch flaps afterwards. Patel seems very un-keen on tension/guage swatches, which is a bit odd, but I just did my own based on the measurements provided.

Yes, that is a Viz annual. It’s puerile, and hilarious.

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I have knitted exactly one pair of usable socks in my life (santa socks don’t count):

I first started to learn to knit socks at primary school when I was 8. The teacher decided it would be good for me to learn to knit something other than stocking stitch scarves. Sadly, I started turning the heel but never fully did so, and what I ended up with looked more like a weird musical instrument than a sock.

Luckily, I am doing better these days. The above was made from Regia 4 ply sock yarn, that self-patterns, hence the fab stripes. I do actually wear these, but only around the house, as I don’t want them to wear out, which sort of defeats the purpose, but I put way too much effort into these to wear them with my trainers! I guess I could knit some more and then my attitude to them would be less precious!

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