Tag Archives: new year’s eve

Finished Object!

New year is a funny ol’ time, and I realize that folk have wildly different feelings about it.

If you’re one of those ultra-sorted people who takes their life to the existential gym five times a week for a thorough workout, and you’re ticking those life goals off the list faster than the ink will flow from your pen, then I’m sure you’re just fine-and-dandy on New Year’s Eve, and are up at midnight singing Auld Lang Syne with the best of ’em. (Maybe you even know all the words.)

Predictably, I’ve been knitting.

But if life isn’t yet quite in the Nobel-prize-winning position that you’d anticipated, then it’s all too easy to OD on cheap prosecco and get maudlin about how it’s “yet another year and I still haven’t won first prize for my onions in the village produce show,” which can lead to sitting in a dark corner at the party and despairing. I mean really, how does Mr W.M.M. Prendergast Esq. from Rose Cottage keep growing these award-winning monster scallions year after year? How?! They’re freaks of nature! I swear there must be some kind of doping irregularity going on. If I tried chopping one of those onions for dinner, I wouldn’t just get a bit tearful; I’d solve the whole Middle Eastern water shortage.

In fact, I’ve FINISHED the knitting.

But, hey, 1st January is just another day, as is the 2nd and the 3rd and the 4th. I sincerely hope that your 2017 will be filled with good things both large and small. And yarn. Lots and lots of squooshy yarn. Happy new year.

So did you stay up past midnight to see in the new year (just to check that it did actually arrive on time – like a really important Amazon delivery)? I headed to London with the Stoic Spouse and the twinnage, to a small party at the house of friends from undergrad days.

Naturally, I knitted on the way.

T’was fun. At five to midnight, we observed our many-years-old tradition and climbed the stairs to the very top of their house. From the attic room balcony, we waited for Big Ben’s midnight chime (via the radio), glasses of champagne ready in our shivering hands. As the new year arrived, we watched fireworks burst all across the London skyline. I know that a lot of people will be glad to see the back of 2016.

New Year's Eve fireworks over London

We attempted to sing Auld Lang Syne, but even though we’ve been doing this on and off for the best part of twenty years, none of us really knows the words, so we just hold hands with our arms crossed and sing, “Should auld acquaintance be forgot, la la la la la la laaaaaaaaa. La la la la, la la la la, for the sake of auld lang syne.” I do realize that Google is a thing, and we should probably be doing better by now.

So I hope that your 2017 has started well. What’s happened round here so far is that I’ve finished my heavily modified version of the ‘Glitter Glam’ jumper. It’s come out OK:-

The pattern is from a recent issue of Simply Knitting magazine, and is listed right here on Ravelry. (Speaking of Simply Knitting, my latest column is out in the current issue. Feel free to go pester your newsagent for a copy. Obviously it’s a marvel of wit and erudition, this time about how deeply yarn/knitting have infiltrated the English language.)

Thanks to your wisdom, I kept it simple and worked the whole thing in stockinette as the variegation in the yarn is plenty complex enough. I also converted it to in-the-round, and added a bit of shaping at the waist. Yarn: Adriafil Knitcol in shade 49: ‘Picasso Fancy’. It’s warm, but it’s a teeny tiny bit itchy, so I’m going to rinse it with hair conditioner to smooth those fibres.

Happy knitting/crocheting, folks. 🙂

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That Was The Year That Was

Yesterday when I got home from work, one of the twins said “Mummy, I saw a grown-up cry today!” This had obviously made a big impression. I don’t think he’s witnessed adult tears before. Questioning revealed that the Stoic Spouse – who’d been looking after the boys all day – had taken them a few miles away to the village of Goring, where in the course of running some errands they’d walked past George Michael’s house, in which he died (far too young) last week. Outside his home was a sea of flowers and messages, and some very tearful locals.

It’s been a funny old year, hasn’t it? All those actors’ and musicians’ deaths. (I confess that I scarcely knew who most of them were, but people I know were quite upset by some of the news.) And let’s not even get on to the subject of elections and referendums…

I hope your year has had some thoroughly lovely stuff in it, and plenty of yarn of course.

Just to follow bloggy conventionality, here are some collages from my year in yarn (and in running shoes, and in the kitchen…)

I designed a few knitting and crochet patterns this year. Most of the patterns are here on this site (free), but a few haven’t been published yet…

…And we’re slowly seeing progress in our attempts to make this old brewery more homely, now that we no longer have the excuse of the twinnage being tiny…

I’ve been knitting and crocheting from other people’s designs, too. Here are some of the things that I’ve made:-

Of course, the biggest/craziest thing I’m designing is THAT ridiculous project that has been going on for years. Early in 2017, it will be DONE! Here’s some progress from the last few months:-

But I haven’t just sat around indoors knitting and crocheting. There have been plenty of walks (and runs) in the local countryside. I do love Oxfordshire:-

And whilst we’re outdoors, look at all this delicious food from the garden and the allotment!

Despite being the least-likely-to-do-so person, I’ve got more serious about running, too. I’ll never be an athlete, but I did manage to run all the way for the Oxford Half Marathon:-

When I’m not running (i.e. most of the time), I like to get out and about with my knitting. People in this village seem remarkably tolerant, and I haven’t walked into any lamp-posts yet.

There’s been a fair amount of cooking and baking, too:-

But most of all, I wanted to say thank YOU, because without you this blog is nothing… or at least it’s just a random knitter waffling into the ether. I love your comments and the generosity of your responses. I hope that 2017 is going to be a mighty fine year for you and yours. And if you’re celebrating tonight, ENJOY!

Right, I’m off to get my party frock on. Happy new year!

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The Musk Ox Is A-Comin’

Happy new year!

May 2015 bring you creative inspiration, manageable hair, unexpected deliveries of the finest yarn, and a bucketload of cake.

Speaking of fine yarn, I whispered the words arctic qiviut at the end of my last post. Whaddya mean, you didn’t notice? Do pay attention, people! Well I’m going to say it just a little louder, now, because the musk ox is a-comin’ to this blog, and he’ll be here soon. Look! One hundred per cent pure arctic qiviut, a once-in-a-lifetime knitter’s dream of a bundle of purple fluffiness:-

Let me hear you sigh, 'Ahhhhhhhhhh'.

Let me hear you sigh, ‘Ahhhhhhhhhh’.

More soon, but you don’t rush matters with arctic qiviut, do you? You need to spend a bit of time with it, get acquainted with its foibles. The musk ox is not to be trifled with. Really, this feels a little like dating, except that I have absolutely no intention of calling things off with this beauty. Would you be perturbed if I confessed that I’ve been known to sleep* with it beside the bed, then carry it carefully downstairs in the morning to watch it in different qualities of light, touch it in different moods, and generally figure out what will make these 29 grams of pure heaven happy? Maybe this relationship is a little unbalanced…

*I use the word ‘sleep’ loosely, since the Toddler Twinnage have ensured that it’s several years since I had a decent night’s kip.

But the proper qiviut posts are yet to come. Meanwhile, I’ve been knitting some Stylecraft Special DK and Bergère de France Lima into a doll for a friend’s daughter. (The pattern is from Deramores, so I can’t take any credit.) I started out with a muddle of body parts over Christmas, which took ages to sew together:-

All the body parts

All the body parts

Anyway, she’s finished, and here she is cuddling a wooden lion:-

image

And she even consented to pose with the Toddler Twinnage, bless her:-

image

Anyway, enough for now. I have a NYE hangover to nurse. Oops.

May 2015 bring you much time to knit and crochet. 🙂

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