Saturday, 30 March 2013

Sarah//Knit Nerds

This week's lovely knit nerd is Sarah from Sezza Knits!!! Sarah is a lovely knitter, she designs the prettiest knitwear for herself and her lovely children. Sarah is mega talented, and I'm really pleased to have her on the blog!!! Here she is:
1. How long have you been knitting/crocheting and who taught you?
My Mum taught me to knit when I was a small child. I did complete a few things as a child, but didn’t really pick knitting up again till my sister was pregnant with my first niece. I learnt to crochet a few years ago, but haven’t ever really explored it beyond a granny square blanket, one day!
2. What is your favourite yarny thing to make?
I love all the things, but socks are probably my most favourite. It just seems so clever, and they are so lovely to wear.

3. Who is your biggest yarny inspiration?
I have quite a few! I love seeing all the projects of my friends on Ravelry and Bloggers I follow.
I have been really inspired by Georgie Hallam of Tikki Knits (who hasn’t been!)
and Morag of Vintage Purls Yarn (dyer of the BEST sock yarn in the world).
They are probably my biggest yarny crushes.
4. What is your favourite completed object?
This is a very tricky question!!! I have a most recent favourite project - my daughters Maggie
but my all time favourite project is probably a toss up between these crazy Chain Reaction Socks I knit as a RACE in 4 days having never done colorwork before
and a gorgeous yellow Paprika, that I really must make again, in a bigger size now my daughter has grown.

5. What inspired you to start your blog?
I was just attempting to design my own patterns, and it seemed like a natural step to attempt to document it. I have found the knitting blogging community to be so incredibly friendly and welcoming and I am really pleased I did jump in!
6. As a designer, what is you favourite of your own designs?
I am probably most proud of my Shelley Bay. There were a few times I wondered if the pattern would ever see the light of day, but in the end it all came together and I love it. My daughter gets huge compliments when she wears it, and Its one of those knits that make me smile when I see it on!

7. If you could give 3 pieces of yarn advice, what would they be?
Knit with colours you love, even if you don’t think they will suit you. I can't wear yellow on my torso, but it looks awesome on my feet!
Support local yarnies whenever you can.
Stash it on Ravelry! I love this feature of Ravelry, its wonderful when considering an upcoming project, you don’t have to dig through stash, just click and look!
You can find Sarah in all of these places:
Sarah also has a lovely giveaway for you, my readers:
Buy One Get One Free.
Just add 2 Sezza Knits patterns to your cart, and use the code Knit Nerd. Valid for 48 hours. Lower Priced pattern will be free.
Bella Mia Ebook Included, but all other EBooks are excluded from this promotion due to already being discounted.
So you can go grab 2 patterns between now and 8am (BST - ah it's summer!) on Monday; go treat yourself to something new for Easter. Make sure you leave some love for Sarah and go check out her blog.
V xo

Friday, 29 March 2013

And Released//Design

You might remember towards the end of last year I finished knitting one of my own designs, the Queen of Hearts Shawl:
I've done my very first test knitting; it went very well and my testers enjoyed the pattern. So I am pleased to announce that my shawl pattern is now available to purchase on Ravelry - at a usual price of £2.50; however I do have a promotion for the next week or so - you can purchase the pattern for just £1.25, by using the code Knit Nerd.

Although the store page does state a specific yarn, you can choose to use any you wish and knit to whatever size you want too. I think this shawl could work in multiple colours too - in colourwork blocks or stripes; there are options!!!

I have to say a huge thank you to the people who have supported me during the release of my first pattern - I'm truly grateful.
V xo

Wednesday, 27 March 2013

And So It Grows//WIP Wednesday

Last Thursday we spent the afternoon in St Andrews - which is one of my favourite places; especially for hunting in the charity shops. I always have a look at their bags because some of my favourites came from charity shops. So what did I happen upon? This pretty little knitting bag, it's big enough for a small project (or two) and it's super cute. I love thinking about how much it was used before it was mine:
 This past week I've spent alot of time working on my fair isle piece; so everything else has kind of taken a back seat - except this:
That's right my crochet blanket is getting even bigger, it's so big that positioning it well so I can crochet is king of proving to be difficult - any tips? I'm now on skein 3; so just 3 more to go - I love seeing this project grow and the subtle colour changes. I would normally link to my project on Ravelry, but there appears to be some kind of glitch getting on there this morning!
What are you working on this week? I'm playing along with Tami and Ginny, as always I encourage you to go check their blogs out and play along.
V xo

Monday, 25 March 2013

FairIsle Felted Needle Case//Year Of Projects

So yesterday I headed off to The Woolly Brew for a First Steps In Fair Isle Workshop!! I've never even tried fair isle but it's been on my year of projects list since I started playing along in July 2012.
Anyways I headed off bright and early, into the freezing cold (wind AND snow) with a little bit of trepidation - I was nervous, what if I wasn't good at it? What I couldn't even find the shop? Obviously I made it and I'm actually not too bad at fair isle. Firstly we learned how to knit continentally both garter and purling; which was really interesting - I need to get better tension but it's alot faster!! Then it was straight in to the fair isle - which meant reading a chart, holding yarn in 2 hands and really concentrating hard.
I got to about row 22:
I'm really pleased with how it came out, is it perfect? NO! But it's really quite alright, and I had fun and learned alot - which of course is my motto for 2013. I've got another good bit to go but once it's finished I shall felt this piece (so mistakes don't matter too much) and knit a rectangle for the inside so it shall be a pretty needle case!!! I'm off to work on it right now.... if the painkillers for my cold hurry up and kick in!!!!
If you're stopping by from year in projects feel free to leave a comment and I will come visit you too!!
V xo

Sunday, 24 March 2013

Pretty Green Pom-Pom Hat//Review

So last week I was looking for an instant gratification project - preferably a hat as it's so freezing cold right now!!! So I had a look through Ravelry and found the Anthropologie Inspired Pom-Pom Hat by the lovely Jessica of the Is and Was blog. So I picked up some super chunky yarn and 8mm needles and started!!!
 It took me less than 24 hours to be finished; and so I started on the pom-pom. Now I haven't made a pom-pom in many years so I had to look it up online. Unfortunately my pom-pom had a little accident but thankfully my lovely wife was able to fix it:
This hat was gorgeous to knit up, next time (and there will be a next time) I think I would knit it in the round as I'm not so keen on seaming!! Jessica's instructions for the hat were excellent; I'm so glad I knit this and I encourage you to give this one a go too!!!
I just noticed that I have just 1 more follower to go before I hit 50..... crazy huh?
What have you been doing this weekend?
V xo

Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Pretty Little Afghan//WIP Wednesday

Last week I felt I really needed a break from THE PUPPY; it was driving me nuts - so I decided to learn crochet. I crocheted 2 small squares first (these will go with others to make a sampler blanket); then I decide to just go for it and start a larger blanket. And thus my Fight Fire Afghan was born:
This yarn is 100% wool, and is simply gorgeous. It's lovely to work with and I think I'm already kind of in love with my afghan. It's not perfect, but then I would expect my first one to be perfect but I am super proud of it and it will always be special.

I did cheat a little bit this week and cast on a instant gratfication project - a quick hat - but that was partly because it's freezing here and I wanted a hat...... and I fell in love with the pattern. I'll be sharing that at the weekend along with a pattern review. I do plan to share my Owls sweater this Friday; it's getting steam blocked tomorrow and the buttons will be added. I want to wear it to Knit Night tomorrow night and to my fair isle class on Sunday.

What are you working on this week? I am playing along with Tami and Ginny!
V xo

P.S - we are now a chicken pox free household; thanks for all the kind supportive messages.

Tuesday, 19 March 2013

Libby//Knit Nerds

Yay a lovely new knit nerd; this is the gorgeous and super talented Libby of Truly Myrtle - she runs fun knitalongs through her blog and knits the most beautiful cardigan's I've ever seen. So here she is:
 1. How long have you been knitting/crocheting and who taught you?
My grandmother taught me to knit when I was a little girl and I leapt straight into experimenting with colourwork and stitch patterns; I was fascinated with making up my own. My mum still has the first crazy, colourful recorder case I "designed" as a kid.
 2. What is your favourite yarny thing to make?
Cardigans are my hands down favourite. I tend towards making "useful" things, hence my Handmade Wardrobe project this year. I'm on a mission to create one whole outfit every month; knitted, sewn and other crafts too. So far, so good. It's proving to be quite a lot of work, but I'm having a ball. I also make clothes for my four kids fairly frequently. There's nothing nicer than a little person wrapped up in your own handknits :)
 3. Who is your biggest yarny inspiration?
That's a tricky one! I have a handful of knitting "crushes" and I'm discovering exciting new designers and dyers every week. I get such a kick from seeing knitters, designers and dyers stretching the boundaries and exploring new ideas , no matter how wacky or far from my taste that may be.

4. What is your favourite completed object?
I recently made the Audrey in Unst Cardigan in beautiful Skein Queen yarn. I think it is the loveliest thing I've every made :) It's closely followed by my recent Flowing Lines sweater in delicious Malabrigo, I was super pleased with how that turned out too.
 5. What inspired you to start your blog?
I'd been reading knitting and craft blogs for a while before I started Truly Myrtle just over a year ago. I didn't know hardly any knitting or sewing people in my real life and had a burning desire to "talk" about the stuff I was making. It's been a fun year, I've "met" so many wonderful people and I'm really enjoying being part of the buzzing international knitting community. There's been some unexpected delights too, I've discovered that I love photography and I'm set on learning everything I can about that. In fact, I've got lots of hopes and dreams for Truly Myrtle and I'm so looking forward to seeing where we are year or two from now.      
6. If you could give 3 pieces of yarny advice, what would they be?
Knit often. The more you knit, the more you learn, the better you get and the more fun it is!
Use fabulous yarn whenever you can. It really makes the whole process that much more delicious.
Find yourself some knitterly friends. They might be in real life, or online. No matter which, knitters are very lovely people :)
Libby is running a knit along right now over on her blog here is what she has to say about it:
I'm running a knit along at the moment at Truly Myrtle. We're knitting Jane Richmond's Grace cardigan until mid-April. There is a lovely prize for one lucky knitter and everyone is welcome to join in! More details on the Grace knit along page at Truly Myrtle.
You can find Libby in all of these places:
Blog: Truly Myrtle; Ravelry: trulymyrtle; Twitter: trulymyrtle and Instagram: trulymyrtlephotos
Make sure you check out Libby's blog; and leave her some love here too.
V xo
P.S - I'm still looking for people to feature as knit nerds; if you want to play along just contact me!!

Monday, 18 March 2013

Feel the Fear//Journey into Crochet

It's not a secret that I've been wanting to try my hand at crochet; so this last week I had a look on you tube; found a series of videos on crochet - I particularly looked at the beginner granny square ones. I found with knitting that I am definitely a visual learner so I figured maybe it would be the same with crochet!!! I found some aran weight yarn in my collection:
 ......and got started; here are my first 2 crocheted granny squares:
They are not perfect but I'm really pleased with them; apparently I have quite good tension for a beginner!! I'm using these squares to start a sampler afghan, so I'll be practicing different stitch patterns. I'm also crocheting a giant granny square afghan, which I will share with you all on Wednesday. Sometimes, with learning, I think we just need to jump in feet first and get on with it. I'm glad I took the chance; I'm still primarily a knitter but I'm really enjoying crochet too - they are both so different so it's nice to have the option.
What are you learning this week?
V xo

PS: I have joined blog lovin'; come add me - I'll add you back!!

Wednesday, 13 March 2013

A Boy's Puppy//WIP Wednesday

So as I said in my last post, my Cadbury Owls is finished - she's beautiful. I've still got to steam block it and add buttons so I'm not sure when I'll get the chance to blog about it. I will say I'm really happy with it but it's been so busy here the last few weeks - both children had chicken pox and now my wife has it, so it's all go!!! I have however started a new project; I promised both my boys I would knit them a soft toy - Kris chose a puppy and Robbie chose a dinosaur. I've started with the puppy who shall be named Moss Bernard (we came up with that together - it's odd but we like it). I started knitting the head just yesterday:
 And the body and feet are finished:
Ok so red feet on a puppy is a little odd, but Kris is 5 and I let him choose the colours. I will say this pattern is not the best written toy pattern I've come across - which I have stated on my Ravelry project page however if you read it a few times and pre-plan your steps it makes a little more sense. I was really annoyed as I had to restart the body 3 times because of the colour changing steps. I will keep going with it anyway because Kris loves this little puppy already. Once I'm finished I shall start Robbie's dinosaur - he's chosen a name but I'll share that when I start knitting. And I'm also working on a secret design project right now too; I will share more details when I'm ready - it's a very special something. I am also planning to start on some granny squares (eek, right?); I figured that I would never get any crocheting done if I don't just jump in with both feet!!!
As usual I am playing along with Tami and Ginny! What are you working on this week?
V xo

Thursday, 7 March 2013

Ouchy//Knit Life

Well I finished my cadbury owl but have not steam blocked it or added buttons yet and I've only knit about 15 rows oif my new project.

Well I went to the doctors' today because I have injured my shoulder - it turns out I have a torn ligament. Its very painful and means I have to rest; also it's my right shoulder and I'm right-handed. So no knitting for at least the rest of this week. Also Robbie now has the chicken pox - its all happening here; just not in a yarn way.
V xo