Finally Trying out the 9″Circular

Having a child has certainly taken a toll on my crafting and blogging! Two years on now and we’re still not getting adequate sleep.  I’m sure there is time there but when I get it the thought of picking up needles or a hook is furthest from my mind.  Staring at the wall or trying to catch a nap is about the only thing I can manage!

In February of this year though I found myself with the crafting itch and some available head space.  I also had some 9″ circular needles that had yet to be opened and decided it was high time tried them out.

So this happened during nap time.

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It was fiddly to cast on and not as easy as with double-pointed needles; but perhaps that was me being rusty and also first time using these needles.  I tried to knit the English way I was taught; logic being that I was new to Continental knitting and didn’t want to overload myself with using too many new skills at once.  But in the end I switched to Continental.  With needles this small, holding the yarn in my left-hand worked was so much easier.

Not wanting to make things too difficult for myself I decided on a basic sock with nothing fancy. Just a bit of ribbing at the top and then plain knitting the whole way through.  That way I knew I could just pick it up at any time and knit without having to think or concentrate too hard.

As it was February, I really thought I’d have it done for winter.  However life seems to get in the way of my best laid plans more now that I have a little one running around the house.  And that’s how I found myself in November before they were finally completed.

I’ve made a few socks before and have a pretty good idea of how their constructed.  Luckily I was foresighted enough to keep track of my stitch counts. I’ve made the mistake of assuming I would “remember”in the past. So even though months passed between finishing the first sock and starting on the other, I knew exactly what to do rather than trying to reconstruct.

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Better late than never right? Not in time for winter, but they’ll be ready for when it gets cold again next year.

Verdict on the 9″circulars? For plain patterns I’ll definitely use them again.  Not sure whether I’d use them for anything lacy or with a complex design; but I’m willing to give it a go.

Few general notes:

  • I needed to use stitch markers; I don’t use them when knitting in DPN as I usually arrange my stitches so that the end of a needle is the marker.
  • Still needed to switch to DPN to finish off the toes.

 

Audrey’s Little Man

This little guy started out his life while I was pregnant. It was early in the pregnancy too as I recall needing something dumb and basic to work on whilst feeling nauseous. 

During my first trimester I was so sick and tired I wondered why anyone would want to go through that more than once. I also remember not being able to wait until it was all over. Little did I know! 

I love my son and I wouldn’t give him up for the world. But at least when I was pregnant I could lie about feeling sorry for myself without having another human being needing me to keep them alive! I’m certainly not getting all the knitting done that I thought I would. 

Anyway back to the knitting.  A very good friend had a baby girl about six weeks ago. Yes, another friend had a baby!! 

This friend is a fellow knitter and she gave my son a beautiful hand-knit blanket which she somehow managed to finish while she was pregnant herself.  As you can see it was essential I have something handmade for her bubba too. 

There was no way I could start and complete a project in our current sleep deprived state.  My son regressed with his sleep again and lately it’s been as bad if not worse than when he was born (I thought things were supposed to get better with sleep by nine months?). 

Thankfully I remembered this UFO! It was fully knitted, all it needed was sewing up and a bit of stuffing in the head. 

Well last week bubs decided to be kind and we had a few nights were we managed 5 or 6 hours sleep. I felt like a new woman and finishing off this little man for Audrey helped me to feel a bit like my old self again. 

  

I love making toys. No need to worry about sizing or whether someone will grow out of it. And hopefully it’ll get loved and sucked on and carried around for many years to come!

You Can Have Your Baby Girl Now

When I was about seven months pregnant one of my besties fell pregnant too.  When she told me, I cried.  See I fell pregnant well after all of my sisters and in-laws; and none of my friends had children.  I have two step-kids who are amazing but are ten and thirteen.  So bubs would be many years younger than his siblings and all his cousins.  I was a sad that there would be such a big age gap there as I have such great memories growing up with all the kids in my family.

It’s hard to describe how happy I was that there was going to be another baby in my close circle who would grow up close in age to bubs.  And then after he was born two more very close friends fell pregnant.  How did I get to be so lucky that three of my besties would have babies within a year of mine?  It’s something I’m incredibly grateful for each day.

Well of course I needed to make something for my future daughter-in-law (yes we arranged our babies marriage as soon as we found out her gender).  And as these things happen sometimes, this pattern appeared in my newsfeed at just the right time.  

I completed the first one a few weeks ago but lost motivation for the second (who’d have thought there’d be a “second booty syndrome”?).  But when mum went into hospital I picked up the second and somehow got it into my head that baby couldn’t be born until they were complete.  Each time I put them down I felt like I was prolonging the agony.  When I went to bed at night with them incomplete it felt like my fault that another day had passed without baby girl making an entrance into this world. 

After day two the booty was complete and I sighed with relief.  It was like a huge weight had been lifted! Unfortunately there really was no link between my unfinished project and this baby’s entrance to the world.  It was another whole day before she arrived and thank goodness mum and daughter are both safe and sound.  

  

Apologies for the photo. Bubs and I were both sick with a nasty cold for a week and it left me with a “that’s good enough” attitude toward documenting the finished product. I’m definitely not complaining though. I’ll take that cold over three days of labour any day!

Finished Objects Friday – Owlie Socks for Ang

Well its been over a year since my last post. 2014 was a big year for me; I found out I was pregnant in February and at almost exactly the same time I completely lost my crafting and blogging motivation.  I was so tired and sick in the first trimester that all my energy was put into my full time work and all hobbies took a backseat.

Things got better after the first trimester but I had lost momentum I guess.  Not to say I didn’t finish anything last year.  There were a few objects that I managed to complete through sheer stubbornness and necessity.  I’ll post a few images at the bottom of this post just to prove it!  But they were few and far between.

My son is now five months old and I think the crafting spark is starting to return.  Being at home on maternity leave doesn’t quite give me the time I’d hoped it would (usually when I get a spare moment I’m trying to catch up on sleep myself!), but I’m finding that taking a bit of time each day to spend knitting or crocheting is helping me to reconnect with the person I was before I became a mother.

Anyway on to the Finished Object! I started these Owlie Socks in January 2014 for a girlfriend who’s birthday is at the end of February.  There should have been no problem getting them done in time!  I completed the first sock by July 2014 and was quite proud of myself despite missing the original birthday.  I didn’t even start on the second sock until January 2015 where once again, I convinced myself that having them done by the next birthday shouldn’t be a problem!

Here we are in March and they’re finally done.  They’re probably the most intricate project I’ve done to date, but so long as you’re OK with double pointed needles, have knitted a sock before, and are familiar with cabling, you shouldn’t have any trouble.  I had never used beads in my knitting before but the pattern gives a link showing how to add them with a crochet hook.  It’s super easy and not something to be daunted by.

It does require concentration so it’s not the sort of thing you want to attempt when you’re tired or distracted or have to put it down constantly (i.e. if you are pregnant or have a newborn!) but the techniques themselves are not difficult.

The result, however, is pretty fabulous and garners lots of very satisfying “Oooo”s when you show people.

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The owls close up.

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There are plenty of mistakes of course; don’t think I’ve managed a project yet without errors! But that’s the charm of something handmade right? If we wanted perfect then it would be much easier, quicker and cheaper to buy these things from a shop.

Now I need to decide whether it’s time to start something new or go back and finish one of my other works in progress.  Perhaps Lempster seeing as how I will now fit into it for this winter?  Or perhaps my Boat Socks?  Or maybe I’ll spend a bit of time reacquainting myself with Ravelry.  Endless possibilities!

Check out other Finished Objects on Tami’s Blog.

And check out a few of the things I did manage to finish last year.

A lovely Beanis, which was a gift for one of my besties for her Hens party.

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And a couple of Halloween Dishclothes, which were a gift for another bestie who moved to Thailand last year.  Actually I made another of these for myself as my first project after my baby was born.  I needed something simple, but also used it to practice some continental knitting.  That might be the subject of another post!

Halloween Dishclothes

Finished Objects Friday – Tanesha’s Unicorn

Thanks Thuri Jons for giving me the motivation to finish Flavia this week! I hope you managed to get your Kitty sewn up too – can’t wait to see her.

Nostrils are a bit wonky but I’m not worried enough to fix it. I never manage to get things perfectly straight!

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First time I’ve done this kind of hair before. Was heaps of fun and I love the effect!

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Next project will be the same pattern for my nephew.  Although I might mix up the colours a bit as he loves yellows and purples.

Check out other Finished Objects on Tami’s Blog.

Finished Objects Friday – Nicko’s Wolf

Thank goodness it’s Friday! These past few weeks have been pretty full on from a work and home renovation standpoint. So I’m very excited to have something to show off this week – Nicko’s Wolf!

It’s Nicholas’ 9th birthday next weekend and I’m pleased to have this done early. Especially as his cousin’s birthday is the weekend after and I really need to get cracking on her Unicorn.

The pattern is Grey Wolf by Adriana Aguirre.  She has heaps of cool patterns, I recommend checking her out.

IMG-20131107-00096Check out other Finished Objects on Tami’s Blog.

Finished Objects Friday – Lion and Crab

After struggling for a few weeks to find motivation for my projects, I think I may have my mojo back!

It almost came to a head last week when I finally finished the lion.  The last few hours of it were a massive struggle and when I was finally done, I never thought I’d pick up a hook or needles again.  Even this adorable creature wasn’t enough to give me a FO high.

photo (1)Instead of the typical drive to start a new project, I instead felt utter relief and spent the next few days being a complete, unproductive slob.

For the most part I was enjoying my slobbishness, the only issue was that the daughter of my longest friend is about to turn one and I had planned all year to make her something.  I agonised for days over whether I could, should, would do it.

And then Monday morning a miracle happened.  I woke up, after a long sleep, remembered it was a public holiday, and that I didn’t have to drag my ass to work, and that I had another day before I had to face the stress again.  My fingers were itching!

This little guy was done before the public holiday was over.  In fact he was done just after lunch!  Lucky he got to see a bit of Aussie sun before being sent over to cloudy, wet England.

IMG-20131007-00083I needed to check that my friend hadn’t moved house since our last correspondence.  During which time he kept an eye on things at work to make sure the stress didn’t get too out of hand and remind me why I do the job that I do – to pay for my yarn habit of course!

IMG-20131008-00084Yesterday he began his long journey over to the other side of the world.  I miss him dearly. I may need to make another little friend to keep me company at my desk and remind me of the important things in life when work gets out of hand.

Does anyone else bring their creations to work?

Check out other Finished Objects on Tami’s Blog.