Nothing works better as travel knitting for me than a nice and simple pair of socks. Last week I got to spend a few days in Iceland for a conference, and a last minute sock cast on was made to keep me company.
I’m going to have very little to say about these socks, which is not at all a reflection about how much I like them. But very simply put, I love the yarn, it was very great to work with and the colours are giving me a very summer-y vibe. And the pattern is an incredibly simple lace repeat, no thinking required. So this was exactly what I needed, a simple yet pretty sock, that I could pick up on the plane or whenever I needed it, and just being able to add a few rows whenever I wanted. I know myself, and I probably would have lost interest in a vanilla sock. So this was the absolute perfect solution.
My low knitting mojo means I do still pick up my needles occasionally, but I haven’t been very focused on one project, and a lot of the time I just mindlessly knit a couple of hexipuffs. Yesterday was Eurovision however, and I used it as an excuse to finally get this pair of socks finished.
This is a pretty fun pattern to make, the cable repeat is not that hard to memorise and keeps the knitting interesting. I think in terms of yarn I’m a bit on the edge with how much business the pattern allows for, but it still works out and the cables pop more than enough.
I recently also made this little unicorn for a tiny friend. The pattern is Nilla the Unicorn and if you are looking for a super cute way of using up your leftover yarn, this is it!
I have been knitting pretty monogamously lately, partly because work has been busy and multitasking multiple projects was too draining, and partly because I was involved in a game of yarn chicken. With this sweater to be exact. And there is some part of me that truly feels like I’m in a race whenever I start to feel I might run out of yarn. As if, when I’d just knit fast enough, surely I’ll beat the yarn to it. Well, maybe it is true, because I totally managed a full sweater with the yarn I had.
This is one of those patterns I have been meaning to make for ages, and the yarn had been in my stash for one year already. I am so happy I finally cast on. The yarn is so so soft, and so much fun with the subtle speckles in many different colours throughout.
This sweater pattern is incredibly beginners friendly. The knitting is basically a top down raglan, and there is no shaping whatsoever in the body. I had no problems following the pattern and the finished product is incredibly light-weight and comfi.
But in full honestly, I will show this picture of the back of the sweater as well. I think I have been seriously knitting for 5-6 years now, but I am very far done from learning. I often find that if I am not very good at a technique, I will avoid it. Which is truly a shame and stops me from knitting all the patterns I want. One thing that often holds me back is alternating skeins when knitting with hand-dyed yarn. I’m much more prone to do this when I know my sloppy alternations are easily hide-able in the button band of a cardigan for example. With sweater I’ll often only alternate for the body, and not for the yoke part where it would be more obvious to see. For this sweater I did alternate throughout, with the exception of the turtleneck. For the yoke the alternation happened on the back, for the body I alternated on the side, where it looks like a seem. And is my alternation on the back neat and invisbible? Hell no, you can definitely tell. I know a lot of knitters would probably run away screaming from a sweater with such an obvious ladder in plain view. But honestly? I don’t care so much. It’s a learning process, at least I did not shy away from it this time. I’m sure in the future I will do better, and until then, I will be wearing this sweater with pride. Imperfections and all.
This pattern is knit toe-up and is pretty much easy going for the most part. The only part for which you need to switch on your brain is the end of the leg where the travelling stitches are happening (but even that part is intuitive and easy to remember). I’ve knit many of Verena’s sock design by now, and they always give me a great fit. Again, this pair sits wonderful on my feet!
I used yarn by a dutch dyer called Craftfulness. The colours are lovely pastels, but you might notice the socks looking pretty different. Of course it’s not uncommon for this to happen with hand-dyed yarn, but it was made significantly worse by me. By the end of sock number 1 I was in a massive fight with my yarn cake, which I had been knitting from the inside out. It had turned into one enormous knot that was pretty much unknittable. Therefore, sock number 2 was knit outside in. I definitely like my socks quirky so it doesn’t bother me one bit though. And I’d take a pair of mismatched socks any day over untangling an untangle ball of yarn barf!
First FO of 2019! Which feels like cheating because this sweater wasn’t even cast on last year, but the year before that.. Yes this is a remnant of the summer of 2017 and it was about damn time I finished it.
This sweater is literally cables for days (many many days, that it took me to knit them). I actually think the front and back panels were finished pretty quickly, and then I stranded on sleeve island for about a year. Not sure why I stranded there for so long, but I think part of it was dreading having to seam the sweater together. And boy, do I hate seaming.
I made no modifications to the pattern, other than going for full length sleeves. In case the prospect of all those cables is daunting to you, I’ve seen a lot of projects on ravelry where on the back panels the cables were substituted with twisted rib, although honestly I would have found that much more tedious to knit.
The sweater initially started out because I had some skeins of Cascade 220 in my stash that were going to waste, and I wanted to find a good use for them. I ordered some extra skeins and the sweater was started. First time using this yarn for a sweater and so far I’m really happy with it, especially because you don’t need to clean out your bank account for a worsted weight sweater.
The fit of this sweater is definitely unlike anything I’ve ever knit before, and when I first tried it on I thought ‘oh my, I’ve knit a cropped cabled tent!’. Then, moving around in it I really started loving this quirky sweater!
I hope you had relaxing and happy holidays, whichever way you spend them. I spend one week in the Netherlands at my parents place, and am now following this up with another week off back in Paris. I never make a big deal out of New Years eve to be honest, nor am I big on resolutions. Some big life events happened for me in 2018, such as defending my PhD, getting married, and moving abroad. I’d be pretty content with a less eventful 2019!
I had no fixed knitting goals for 2018, other than wanting to knit more sweaters. As you may know I’m pretty addicted to sock knitting, and normally most of my FOs of the year will be socks. Wanting to knit more garments I knew would result in 2 things; less finished socks and less finished overall objects (a sweater takes me much longer to knit than a pair of socks).
Both of these predictions seem to be true. As you can see from my pile, I managed a total of 6 garments (2 tops, 1 cardigan, and 3 sweaters), which I’m super pleased with! I’ve been wearing them very proudly (whenever the weather allowed it). The bottom most orange sweater hasn’t been blogged about at all yet, as I cast it on last month on my Birthday and finished it on NYE. I’ll reveal its identity later this week!
The garments I knit are: Tegna top, Tambourine cardigan, Gran sweater, Threipmuir sweater, and the Bolan T. I’ve been wearing all of them but I think my absolute favourite has been the Threipmuir sweater. It was my first ever colourwork sweater and even though it is not perfect, it is perfect to me. I wear it whenever I can!
I finished 2 shawls, both at the beginning of the year, and already got so much wear out of both of them. I’ve been wearing the Henslowe shawl on warmer days and the Invincible Summer shawl on cooler days. To be honest they’ve kind of dominated my shawl choices, making me feel bad for my other shawls.
I finished two hats, one gifted (the Frais hat), and one pictures on the pile (Coral Reef hat). Both had similar rainbow style pompoms, making them incredibly cheerful.
Even though I knit much fewer socks than I normally would, 6 finished pairs is still pretty decent. This has also brought up the total count of pairs of socks I own to 41. This number has made me itch to get to 50 pairs in 2019, even though I realise it is a totally arbitrary goal. I knit 3 pairs of vanilla socks, and 3 patterned ones (Fade X socks, Tulsi socks, and Prairie Spring socks). I do by now feel like I’m slowly getting over knitting vanilla socks to be honest. The knitting is too boring and I’d prefer even having a simple stitch pattern to knitting a vanilla sock.
Once again I have no strong goals for 2019. I guess I want to continue knitting more garments, as its been such a rewarding thing for me in 2018. More colourwork would definitely be good to improve my skills there. Other than that, I’ll be knitting whatever strikes my fancy.
What about you? Do you have any (knitting) resolutions for 2019?
I had a very happy mail day last week, receiving my copy of the new pattern book I Knit Paris. The book features 10 patterns inspired by the city of Paris, by nine different French designers. Besides these patterns, the book includes an overview of all the knitty spots in the city, as well as interviews with all the designers and their connection to and favourite spots in the city.
I’m really excited by this books, as it actually is very insightful about spots to visit that I wasn’t aware of yet, and has information about all my favourite knitting stores bundled together. The pattern photography is stunning and feels properly Parisian, capturing both the knitting and the places that inspired it.
I think my absolute favourite pattern from the book is the Tuileries Pullover by Julie Knits in Paris. If I’d had to imagine a sweater that looked interesting to make, interesting to look at, but also interesting to wear basically every day, this sweater is the personification of those thoughts. I’m going to need this sweater in all of the colours.
I’m of course also head over heels (pun intended) in love with the sock design in this book. The Jardin à la Française socks by Tisserin Coquet feature fun colourwork inspired by shapes and symmetry that can be found in French gardens.
I also had an immediate cast on after receiving the book, which is the Running Up That Hill shawl by les Tricoteurs Volants. The pattern name refers to the hill leading up to Montmartre, which in general I would not recommend you to run up ;). Knitting this shawl I can heartily recommend however.
All in all, I’m extremely happy with this book. If you’re looking for a beautiful pattern book that also happens to be a knitty Paris city guide, this is the book for you. You can have a look at all the patterns here.
I hope you are all having a lovely Sunday afternoon. I am currently wrapped up in my pyjama’s while watching the rain outside. It is perfectly cosy. And every cosy Sunday needs a cosy pair of socks.
Pattern: Improvised vanilla socks with fish lips kiss heels
Yarn: Twisted Limone sock yarn in the Dreamcatcher colourway
These socks have been my mindless knitting for the past couple of weeks, picking them up every now and again. They are actually much longer than I had intended. I had just bought a new set of 2.25mm sock needles and cast on 72 stitches. After knitting a couple of cm’s these socks seemed way too big however. I measured my brand new needles as a sanity check, and turns out they were actually 2.5mm needles. Very frustrating! I didn’t feel like starting over so I decided to make them longer and decrease stitches on the calf. I added contrasting heels and toes using some leftover sock yarn.
With these socks now off the needles I only have 2(!!) active WIPs! One is a pair of First Star socks, and the other is the Inori shawl. I feel a little cast on spree coming on soon..