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February, 2012:

Making Monday – Finishing Touches

It’s finally finished.

All done!

 

As you can see I decided on swirly, thanks for the encouragement Mimi!, for the button. Friday I bought the snap fasteners from the fab haberdashery stall in the market and I finally sat down to sew one in on Saturday night. I also remembered that after 12 years of making garments I’d ordered some labels. I’d been meaning to do it for years and in December I just googled and found Woven Labels UK. They were pretty reasonable, £9.99 for 36 and it was simple to choose a label design although the cat with yarn is possibly better suited for knitted items. As you can see I choose a purple ribbon with silver thread. I’m hoping it won’t be scratchy against my skin. Choosing what to write on the label was more difficult. I really wanted to come up with something innovative and original but I couldn’t 😉 I don’t know if I’ll stick with “Marie Made” for my next set but I’m happy with it at the moment. The only other name I’ve ever had in mind for labels was “By Marie”.

Pack of labels

The only downside about the labels is that I suck at sewing them. I made a real hash of the first one and it wasn’t very centered. This one isn’t a great deal different but it’s still better. It’s just really tricky to sew something like that in without the stitches showing up on the cardi. I’m not 100% sure how long it’ll stay in so I may have resew it sooner rather than later.

Closeup of Labels

She’s Electric has moved on quite a bit. I’ve been knitting on it while trying to catch up with Grey’s Anatomy. I’m currently in the early eps of season five. A month ago I’d only ever seen the first series and I’m trying to catch up to the current season 8. So that’s a serious lot of tv watching. Seriously.

So SE has passed the putting sleeve stitches on scrap yarn period and I’m about 2 inches done on the body. I finally agreed on the contrast colour for the waist stitching design and it’s some yarn left over from a previous project that I’ve had stashed for several years. It is perfect and it also required some serious detangling which Doug helped me sort out over the weekend. It’s now organised and wound into two centre pull balls. 🙂

 

Making Monday – Buttons!

So, my Cosmic Pluto easy Topdown Raglan Cardi is blocked. All it needs now is a snap fastening to close it and a decorative button.

Lots of buttons

 

I rarely use more than one button on a cardi plus I admit, I am a bit lazy 😉 But buttons create another dilemma because I just can’t decide which to use.

Gorgeous Mother of Pearl Moon from Liberty

 

Another decorated mother of pearl button

 

Carved soap stone hand

 

Wooden leaf

 

Carved wooden face

 

Big Ladybird

 

Bronzy faux metal

 

Crane button - I have two more of these

 

Carved Wooden Paisley

 

Faux tortoiseshell Spiral

 

Some of the buttons next to each other for comparison

 

At the moment I think I’m down to deciding between the Paisley and the spiral buttons. I bought them both from a stall at the Knitting and Stitch and Stitching Show in 2008. The others are from various places acquired over the years. It’s all too easy to get a “little” button collection going 😉

 

Thanks for all the competition entries so far, guys. Remember it’s open until March 18th so there’s still plenty of time to enter.

 

 

10th Blogiversary and Competition!

I can barely believe it but this blog is ten years old! Ten years ago I was obsessed with knitting. It was a relatively new obsession for me as I’d only picked up my first knitting magazine, the Fall 2002 issue of Interweave Knits, a few months earlier. I couldn’t believe my luck when I found out that there were knitting blogs as well. There weren’t a great deal around back then, I remember that Chic Knits was one of my regular haunts, and I could easily catch up on them every evening.

Before knitting came into my life I’d often pondered having a blog but I’d not been too sure what I would write about. I did buy my own domain name in 2000 and hadn’t really done a geat deal with it, so having a knitting blog seemed perfect. I could write about my craft and as a bonus I’d have a record of my work too.

I still have to fix my archives so I can’t link to that first entry just yet but I do still remember the nerves I had writing that first post. Would anyone read it? The knitting blog community was small and loyal and I fit right in. Comments didn’t exist at that point so we would email other if we liked a post and I made many friends within the group. I joined the Knitting bloggers webring and got to know my neighbours. Soon we were exchanging parcels via snail mail. The friendliness of the crafty bloggers has always been a delight.

Ten years on, I still love knitting but this is more of a crafting blog despite the majority of posts being tagged “knitting”. My other loves of jewellery making and sewing have pushed back in 😉 It’s also been a joy to see the rise of sewing blogs. When I was first sewing in 2000 there were very fewblogs with any sewing ontent. I was so pleased to find Sew Wrong, Mena of The Sew Weekly‘s first venture in sewing blogdom. In 2012 there are countless craft related blogs to read and to be honest I do feel rather guilty because I don’t keep up with my blog reading as much as I used to. I still hope that one day I’ll catch up but somehow I don’t believe it. 😉

Before I forget, something rather unexpected happened today, my gmail account was hacked. Someone got into it in the early hours of the morning and attempted to spam my address book with a link to some crappy t-shirt site. Fortunately Google’s security settings detected the hacking and stopped those emails being sent. It’s been a massive pain going and changing the passwords for all the sites I use but it’s also been a wake up call that I should have changed it more often.

But back to nicer things – to celebrate my 10th blogiversary I’ve decided to run a little competition 🙂 I’m giving away a copy of Norwegian Knitting Designs. This is the recent paperback version of Norsk Strikkedesign. I bought a hardcopy version some years ago. It’s full of amazing colour work knitting patterns and it could be yours!

 

You could win this!

 

In order to enter all you have to do is leave a comment on this post. I’ll close the comments in a month’s time and then pick the winner using a random number generator. Good luck!

Making Monday – Finishing

I’ll admit it, this is a bit of a rushed blog. I’m particularly dissatisfied with the photos which are far darker than I would have liked because they’ve not long been taken.

I’d hoped to space things out a bit more but I’ve been feeling pretty miserable with a chest infection for nearly a week. I’m asthmatic so they tend to hit me hard.  I realised that something was wrong during my pilates class last week, as I was getting out of breath a lot. By Thursday it felt as though something was pressing down on my chest. That pressure feeling has only just gone. Thank god for antibiotics.

Although I was feeling rubbish I did get some more rows done on She’s Electric.

Too dark photo of She's Electric progress

On Saturday night I sewed in the ends of my Cosmic Pluto Top Down Raglan. Here it is blocking on towels.

Another not perfect image of my top down raglan blocking

It’s not quite that bright in real life. This is, though –

Amaryllis in full bloom

I’m a bit of a sucker for amaryllis and have had several of them over the years. Getting them to bloom isn’t an issue but remembering to store them properly afterwards, is. I’ll see if I change that with this one.

And I have a final piece of hip news – I had my follow up appointment at the hospital today where I was told that I didn’t have an impingement at all and wouldn’t be needing any surgery.

Of course, this is brilliant news but I can’t help but be quite angry for the time I lost worrying over a surgery that I never needed to have. Several months have been lost and my muscles became weak and I’m still in the process of building them back. I will never get that time back. It’s an anger that can’t go anywhere. People make mistakes and what if there had been something wrong and it had been missed? That would have been worse. But I have gone through a very emotionally wrought time and I need to process it all.

Making Monday – First post of the Year

This blog, Space Craft, is ten years old this month and as part of celebrating and marking that, I’ve decided to set myself a little blogging challenge. From this week onwards I will blog every Monday for a year. It’s a challenge and a bit of a kick up the backside for me. I can always think of stuff to blog about but I rarely get around to writing it. I’m still making things but I don’t document them as often as I could. And well, I’ve had over two months off from blogging as it is 😉 It also means that I can join in with Natalie from The Yarn Yard‘s Making Monday. 🙂

I don’t know if it’s a seasonal thing but now that it’s colder I seem to be spending more of my time knitting than sewing. It could be related to a recent sewing disaster but more on that in another post. Current knitting WIPS are Rose Red by Ysolda and She’s Electric by Ann Weaver. I had intended for She’s Electric to be my Xmas project and I was going to knit as much of it as I could, possibly even finish it, over the Xmas holidays. It didn’t work out that way.

 

About 11 rows completed on She's Electric

 

Instead I finished off the Cosmic Pluto top-down cardigan which had been on the needles for about three years, and I didn’t get a great deal further than casting on SE. Incidentally I partly knit the TDRC in some Lamb’s Pride Worsted that I bought way back in Dharma Trading in 2004 when I met Rachael Herron and Mariko for the first time! I’ve just realised that I also bought the LPW in Magenta shade that I’m using for SE at the same time! You can see it in the pic on this archive entry. The Pink skein at the top is the pink I used on the TDRC and the LP just under it is what I’m using on the SE. OMG I’ve just realised that it’s over eight years since I bought that yarn! It’s been in my stash for all that time. Ah well, at least I’m using it now 😉

It’s not photographed that well this time in my 11 rows picture. It’s a lot more vibrant in real life and the old pic is more true to its colour. I could have knit a lot more on this than I have as asides from checking which way your increases are going, it’s mostly stocking stitch. But I bought a red coat in the sales and decided that it was time to pluck the two balls of Debbie Bliss Rialto DK in colour 23012 out of my stash and cast on for a much promised Rose Red beret by Ysolda.

 

Rose Red Beret in progress

 

 

It doesn’t quite match my coat – the coat is more of an orangey red and the yarn is more of a blue red – but they’ll go together fine.

My new coat with my Rose Red for comparison

I’m currently wearing the coat with a scarf from Rowan Biggy Print that I made I-can’t-remember-how-long-ago but I want to make a cowl to go with the coat. I have some yarn in my stash for that but am not sure how long it’ll be before I cast on for that since I have to finish RR first!

I’ve had so many problems with RR though. It’s no fault of the pattern which is very well written, alas it’s all down to me. I have to really focus when knitting it and count my stitches every row. So far I’ve had to rip out lots of rows and in one case rip it right back to the icord start, because I’d made a mistake. I love the way the design is building, it’s gorgeous. It’s just that this isn’t tv watching knitting, at least not for me. And it’s certainly not something I can work on while watching Borgen and keep up with the subtitles! SE is perfectly suited for that but I just haven’t been picking up the needles.

Something else that can take away from crafting time is reading. Since last year I’ve really got back into it with a passion. I love Good Reads and their book reading challenge is great. This year I’ve set myself the target of reading 30 books. That’s mainly because a lot of the books I’ve been reading have been quite long and whereas I can easily whiz my way through 300 pages, it’s a bit harder when it’s over 700. I’ve just finished This Perfect day by Ira Levin which had a really big impact on me, I’ll be thinking about it for a while.

Hip news

My MRI came back clear which means that I haven’t damaged any of the soft tissue in my left hip. I’ve been having physiotherapy since November as all of the slowing down recommended by the GP has meant that my muscles had become very weak. They’re building up more now and I’ve been able to go back to my pilates classes. The impingements haven’t gone away of course, and there will still be things that I can’t do like some movements in pilates. I don’t know when I’ll have to have surgery on them, probably not for a few years anyway, but I’m seeing the surgeon again next week for the MRI follow up.