I’ve been home sick all this week, and I think I’m finally feeling better. Still a ways to go though. I spent a few days pretty much doing nothing, but now I have some energy back so I’ve been crocheting.
Piles of these circles for the innards of a bunch of hexagons, following this tutorial. It’s very easy, and they’re really quick. I’m working with a bunch of random skeins of Cascade 220 and a 4.25mm crochet hook (G). I’ve made 32 so far in about 3 days. I’ll do the last round of all of them in the same colour and join them as I go, once I have them all. I think I might aim for 100.
I guess I’m pretty bad at taking it easy, because this week I’ve also started laying out 5 new sweater patterns, and swatching for some new designs. Double-stranded Handmaiden Casbah!
Watching: CW’s Nikita – it’s filmed here in Toronto, and it’s pretty fun picking out locations! Good butt-kicking fun.
Reading: Cryponomicon by Neil Stephenson. It’s going to take awhile.
Eating: not much, sadly. But congee is a good, plain, comforting food. It’s just 1 cup of rice (I used short-grain, like sushi rice), 8 cups of water, simmered together for an hour or two with some salt until it’s like a porridge. Serve with sesame seeds and soy sauce/tamari, and whatever mix-ins you like – I usually do some sauteed tofu and peas, but I’m just eating it plain right now.
A crocheted ripple blanket, worked in neat ripple.
Cascade Eco Wool, 10 skeins total in about 8 shades (some colour sections are longer). Yarn held double, with a J / 6mm hook. Yes, it’s pretty firm, but it did loosen up quite a bit in the wash. I probably could’ve gone up at least one hook size, but I like the density. It nearly covers the top of my double bed (though I didn’t get any photos of that, oops). I started out making it for myself, but ended up giving it to my partner for his birthday yesterday. It’s still in the family.
It’s been a rather unproductive long weekend. I started a crochet sunhat out of a single skein of Euroflax linen, only to have to rip it out about five times because it sucked!
The beginning went okay.
I think I might fiiiinally have hit on the right combo. Needs a wash, then we’ll see. My knitting hasn’t really been behaving either – I had an idea that I tried to sketch and swatch out, but I don’t think I can actually do it except for at full size (and the swatches didn’t look very good either). And I’ve been working on a cabled pullover with lovely O-Wool Legacy DK, but I’ve had to rip out the back a bunch of times too!
I think I’m finally back on track. Of course, with this heatwave (40C/100F with humidex!) I might just make a few more batches of ice cream instead of knitting.
First of all, thank you all so much for your awesome response to Afternoon Tea volume one!
I’m hard at work on the next one, which will shoot in late August. Kind of tough to work on fall/winter stuff in the summer, but such is the life of a pattern designer. I’ve also been super busy working at lettuce knit, and dealing with some family medical issues (good vibes for my dad’s recovery from heart surgery would be appreciated).
But luckily I have a lovely spot to sit and knit now – my apartment (which you may remember I moved into late last summer) is on a second floor and has a nice big porch out front. I’d been without outdoor space for a couple years before moving here, so I was really excited to start up a container garden again! It’s been a pretty slow process of getting things ready, finding containers and everything, but now that it’s warm out the plants seem to be humming along.
First thing I planted in late April was peas, in just a plastic container from Ikea – I have a pretty random assortment of containers, mostly plastic pails. The peas are flowering now and there are few pods too. There won’t be a huge harvest or anything, probably not even enough for a meal, but raw peas straight off the vine are such a treat!
The chard I planted is doing pretty well, though it was slow to germinate. It’s Rainbow Lights, so the stems will be different colours.
Poor romaine. It got nibbled at pretty well before I got some chicken wire (the peas too). It’s finally growing pretty well, but I need even more chicken wire!
Basil – I love basil and I have about 8 plants! The container on the left is what I grew from seed, the rest I bought.
Just planted beans last week and they’ve popped up really nicely! I’ve got tendergreen and royal burgundy.
Left to right: Early Girl tomatoes, Husky tomatoes, Bambino eggplant and basil. I know I’m pushing my luck with 2 tomatoes in the same planter. I can’t decide whether I want to spend money on more planters, more soil, and more plants – it’s a slippery slope.
I got a nice folding table and chairs from Ikea and we’ve eaten dinner outside a few times. It’s quite lovely.
Today’s first harvest – baby spinach, baby chard, a few leaves of romaine and some basil. A tiny salad?
In fibery news, I’m knitting a lot, and I’ve been crocheting a lot on this blanket:
It’s almost done now!
Hey! I finished one of my crochet projects!
I’ve had a sad, naked couch cushion for ages (well, not that naked – I put a bed pillowcase on it) and it was finally time to do something about it. I really love how this turned out, and I’ve always wanted to make more housewaresy stuff with my vast collection of yarn.
The front is a Wool-eater square, while the back is a granny square.
Let me tell you, the granny square side was WAY faster than the Wool-eater side – all those extra loops in the Wool-eater really slow me down. The yarn is all Cascade 220, 2 skeins of the teal and little scrap half-or-third skeins of the yellows.
I single crocheted the two sides together along three of the sides, holding the two pieces wrong sides together. For the last side, the opening, I single crocheted along the front and back separately, and added some chains to close it up.
Along with my Wool-eater obsession, I also started another crochet project – a ripple blanket. I’d bought a bunch of Cascade Eco Wool awhile ago with the plan of making a knitted blanket, but once the crochet took hold it only seemed natural to crochet it instead!
I started with a 5mm hook and a single strand.
That didn’t really seem right though, so I ripped it all out (after finishing a whole huge ball of Eco wool!) and started again, this time with two strands of yarn and a 6.5mm hook.
It’s going to take even more yarn than I’d bought, but that’s ok! It’s really nice and thick, and goes really quickly with the big hook. The only downside is that I can’t do as long in a sitting as with smaller yarn – the motions are pretty taxing on my wrist.
I also finally, finally got back to my spinning wheel after ages away from it!
I had this BRIGHT teal merino half spun up already, so it didn’t take too long to finish it up. It’s 420 yards of fingering weight 2-ply, and very soft.
After that, I needed something quick from the wheel, so I grabbed a lone bump of Pear Tree Merino roving and spun that up really quick-and-dirty style. It’s very inconsistent, but really soft and fluffy. I love spinning long draw!
This one is 216 yards of 2ply worsted(ish) weight. Not sure what I’ll do with it, but for now I’ll just take the relaxation of sitting at the spinning wheel with something good on the tv.
Afternoon Tea Volume Two
Afternoon Tea Volume One