Thank you 2018…

As 2018 draws to a close and 2019 peeps over the horizon, it is that time of year when bloggers from all around the world post their obligatory review of the year. 

Yes, this is that type of post…however, I have kept it simple and I have decided to choose just one photo from each month…yarn related of course. 

Suffice just to say, 2018 has had it’s ups and downs, as I am sure it has for you; but crochet has, as always been my constant therapy!  2018 was all about busting my stash, finishing Projects Half Done (PHD’s) and learning to knit…I have also released the following FREE patterns this year which I hope you have enjoyed.

Sunshine Jelly Baby Blanket

Grandma Florence Tea Cosy

Grandma Kathy Tea Cosy

Being part of an amazing crafty community means so much to me and I just want to say a MASSIVE thank you to you, whether you are a first time reader or if you are a regular  here at the nest.  Your support and encouragement is treasured. 

Here  are my favourite 12 yarny photo’s of 2018…

January 2018

crochet tea cosy free pattern and tutorialThe Grandma Florence Tea Cosy…bright, quirky and a whole lot of fun to make.

February 2018

broken foot and crochet
guilt free resting!

February, revolved around guilt free crochet as I ended up on crutches and had to take a month out of work. Luckily, for me I found the beautiful Seaside Stashbusting Blanket CAL hosted by the very talented Coastal Crochet It was the perfect project to bust some of my stash…every cloud eh!

March 2018

crochet blanket
crochet and coffee

This is my favourite photo from March.  My Seaside Stash Busting Blanket was starting to look more blanket like and by now I was enjoying the random colour selection from my stash.

April 2018

crochet baby blanketOn a personal level April was profoundly traumatic and sad here  at the nest, but on a yarny level I released the pattern for this beauty.  I just love this blanket so, so much and it proved to be a welcome shower of cheer which burst forth amongst the grief.  This also fulfilled the remit of completing a PHD!

The free pattern is available just here. 

May 2018

learning to knit
learning to knit

2018 saw the beginning of my learning to knit adventure…this is as far as I got.  I started really well and perhaps got a little ambitious…which became my downfall.  Here are my posts to prove it here,  just here and here

I haven’t returned to this project yet as I can’t work out where I am in the pattern!  I do really want to finish this off…a New Year Challenge perhaps? 

June 2018

crochet blanket cal

  We had an unusually hot summer here in the UK, so hooking al fresco was great now that my Seaside Stash Busting Blanket had grown in size.  We had a beautiful sunny weekend glamping and those soft pink and grey shells will forever remind me of that recharging break away with Mr R and the Robins.  You can read about those glamping adventures just here.

July 2018

crochet zebra

The stash busting continued throughout July and inspired me to hook this cheeky dude.  I had some black, white and grey Paintbox cottons just sitting in my stash and the most apparent thing to make was a zebra of course. 

Having never made amigurumi before I am now completely smitten with all things amigurumi, which came as a total surprise to me!  I made so many mistakes with this pattern, but learnt lots about the process of amigurumi along the way…if you want the full details of the mistakes I made take a look here.

August 2018

Vintage Market Tote

This was a joy to hook and also busted some more stash.  I made this Vintage Market Tote for my Mama…and she loved it

September 2018

mixed stitch blanket

The end was in sight for the now glorious Seaside Stash Busting Blanket…and just in time for the change of seasons as Autumn crept in.

October 2018

amigurumi unicorn

A real …tadaaa… moment.  This beautiful unicorn was made with a lot of love in my heart and no mistakes…well none that I know of!  A real gem of a pattern that was easy to follow and so well written.  It was an absolute joy to send her to her forever home and I am looking forward to hearing what she has been named.  The pattern details are just here.

November 2018

crochet baby blanket

My two favourite things to do when I’m on my own are to crochet and drink coffee and if I can do both whilst watching the world go by then that is near perfect for me. 

This  is another stash busting win for me also…a super soft and pretty baby blanket using up left over yarn from my Sunday Shawl.

December 2018

crochet bag

This is the sad state of my Charming Harbour Blanket…still in its bag  (hangs head in shame!). 

This photo is from January…a PHD fail.  I have added some more rows over the course of the year…honest I have.  I don’t know why I haven’t finished it.  The pattern is simple and it is very handsome… and it is not really that far from being finished; but the pretty things call me more loudly.  

All in all 2018 has been quite yarny, maybe not as yarny as some, but yarny nonetheless.  I have met some amazing crafty friends along the way, busted through a lot of my stash and finished a PHD or two. 

Now bring on 2019!

xxxxx

 

 

 

 

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My Yarny Knitting Adventure part 6…

 

  In which fire is involved!

Campfire that is and a little fizz of course.  I am now feeling much more relaxed when I knit; well with this pattern anyway. I think it is because I know I can undo a mistake and put it right, the pressure of getting it right or starting over from the beginning is no longer a looming threat.

learning to knitSo, I took my knitting alfresco last weekend and enjoyed every single second of it!

I even managed some around the campfire…

learning to knitI am so pleased with this little (BIG)project…I have made some more progress since these photo’s…I am now half way through the second pattern repeat, but still a long way to go before it even starts to feel blankety. 

What do you think?

XXXXX

PATTERN DETAILS:

The pattern is this rather magnificent blanket... by Purl Soho inspired by Barbara Walker. 

 

OTHER POSTS FROM MY KNITTING JOURNEY ARE JUST HERE:

part 1 of my knitting adventure is just here

part 2 of my knitting adventure is just here

part 3 of my knitting adventure is just here 

part 4 of my knitting adventure is just here

part 5 of my knitting adventure is just here

 

 

 

 

My Yarny Knitting Adventure part 5…

 

  In which Momma comes to the rescue!

After my last update about my knitty adventure, I continued for all of 2 more stitches before I noticed another dropped stitch and had to rip it all back again!  I don’t have any photo evidence of this as I could not face taking the photo. 

Now, I felt like stuffing the yarn into the bottom of a bag and just forgetting about the whole sorry thing, but deep down I knew I could do this if I just kept trying and waited for it to click.  There is a point where things just click into place and whatever it is you are doing feels more natural. 

learning to knit

Well,  I recast and re knit the first three rows and then half way through the fourth row I realised that I was knitting quite quickly, my knitting action felt more fluid and I realised that the muscles in my face were actually relaxed and not contorted…and I was enjoying this knitting experience…finally!

learning to knit And so I continued until I got to row 19 and realised I had knit a stitch instead of slipped it!  

The four cream knit stitches in the middle of this photo should have been x3 knit stitches and a slipped stitch     (or x3 cream stitches and x1 teal)

Now, I only know how to rip back and start again, but I just couldn’t bring myself to do that, but I also couldn’t work out how to unknit the stitch either.  So I headed over to Mom’s who rescued the day and who also taught me how to unknit the stitch and fix the problem.

learning to knit

I am now on row 20 and am dancing the happy knitty dance!

The pattern is this rather magnificent blanket... by Purl Soho inspired by Barbara Walker. 

This knitting adventure is finally becoming enjoyable!

xxxxx

part 1 of my knitting adventure is just here

 part 2 of my knitting adventure is just here

 part 3 of my knitting adventure is just here 

part 4 of my knitting adventure is just here

 

 

My Yarny Knitting Adventure part 4…

 

  In which I make a giant leap!

You may well have thought ‘Well that didn’t last long!’ and for a wee while there I thought I may never knit again to.  I have not knit since the last time we spoke of knitting just here.  There are many reasons why but they could just be summed up in one word…’life!’ Yes, life has been busy and if I’m honest very, very sad at the nest, due to a very sudden and very untimely bereavement and so as such I have been unable to comprehend summoning up the fair amount of concentration knitting demands from me. 

I have taken solace in my hook and hooked rows of simple half double crochet on my long forgotten Charming Harbour Blanket instead.

So, after a good while without knitting I spent an evening browsing patterns and decided I still may never knit again because they seemed so flipping difficult to read and  to interpret.  That was until I saw this rather magnificent blanket... by Purl Soho inspired by Barbara Walker.  Advanced beginner it said…and I said ‘well then I can do this!’  

I borrowed my Mom’s circular needles and tried to cast on.  There lay my first problem, I had forgotten how to cast on and I thought yet again I may never learn to knit! That would have been an awful shame because my lovely brother had in the passing weeks gifted me these beautiful needles.  

new knitting needles

With a little perseverance and some minor cursing I remembered how to cast on and look…

learning to knit

I  had managed 123 little stitches followed by one row of knit stitches.  What this picture doesn’t tell you is that this took two attempts as I lost a stitch somehow on my first try.

learning to knit

So, you see my knitting adventure continues precariously but it does continue!

xxxxx

part 1 of my knitting adventure is just here

 part 2 of my knitting adventure is just here

 part 3 of my knitting adventure is just here 

 

 

 

My Yarny Knitting Adventure part 3…

 

  In which wine is not involved!

I have not knitted every day this week; I have done a wee bit though.  Most of my yarn time has been given over to a beautiful crochet baby blanket and to getting the pattern and tutorial ready to go out in a couple of days, which actually has been quite time consuming…

It’s a good job I love to do nothing better! 

But back to knitting…this is what I have completed. 

learning to knit

I have completed 35 rows of stocking stitch. 

Told you it wasn’t much…but this is what I have learned.  Purl stitch is spelt P.U.R.L… not as I had spelt it in my last post! 

 I think I can count the rows better if I look at the purl side.  I also have been keeping track of which row I am leaving my stitches at by emailing myself…you may laugh but it works for me! 

I have also had another little lesson with Mom, no wine involved this time;  in which we discussed and she demonstrated increasing and decreasing and I got a little frustrated…! 

Mom also gave me an old pattern just to look through and get familiar with the terms and just actually reading a knitting pattern…which got me thinking that making these squares is a bit dull. 

Before I knew where I was, it was way past midnight and I had picked out a few easy knit mitts and beanies over on ravelry…this is my favourite just here

Now do you think I should really start something just yet?

 

xxxxx

part 1 of my knitting adventure is just here

 part 2 of my knitting adventure is just here

  

 

 

 

My Yarny Knitting Adventure part 2…

 

  In which I progress to pearl stitch…

I have knitted religiously every day this week; just a little bit here and there.  I read about the brain having ‘muscle memory’ and the importance of repetition when learning something new.  If only knitting practice or crochet for that matter toned the physical muscles…I would be a goddess by now!

learning to knitSo I have knitted more squares using the ‘knit’ stitch and I have sorted out the wibbly edge.  I am pleased with my tension and I am not getting a random extra stitch anymore.  I can cast on and off all by myself too.  I have learnt that this knit stitch is also called garter stitch and that when the fabric is separated you have an umbrella and a v underneath…but to count the stitches is tricky.  I am doing 40 rows not 20 like I thought! 

This is my weeks work… 

learning to knit

learning to knit On Friday evening  my Mom came round with some more wine…(there is a theme here isn’t there?) and taught me how to pearl. 

Now as far as I can tell this is just backward knit stitch, but I love it.  It gives a flatter fabric which makes my heart flutter a little bit.  I thought I would be able to make squares just from pearl stitches but Mom explained that I could not do this and would need to make squares to practice that were  made up of a row of knit stitch followed by a row of pearl stitch; repeated…also known as ‘stocking stitch’. 

I love that in knitting there is a term like stocking stitch or garter stitch which refers to a pattern repeat…I don’t think crochet does this so well. 

Anyway, this is my first attempt at stocking stitch…can you notice the BIG whoops?  Yes, I lost track of my rows and must have pearled or knitted two rows together and my flatter pearl rows jumped over to the bumpier knit side! learning to knitOh well!  It may have been the wine. 

I still can’t count the rows…it is so difficult to count the rows. 

Any advice gladly welcome?

xxxxx

part 1 of my knitting adventure is just here  

  

 

 

 

My Yarny Knitting Adventure part 1…

 

I can not knit. 

I have tried before, but it has not ended well.  For a while now I have thought about knitting, but then I would recall my previous attempts and squash any thought I had. 

But, just the other week I spied the most gorgeous pair of fair isle mitts I ever did see and I thought I must learn to knit.  Then I thought of my previous attempts at knitting and instead of squashing that thought…I thought… I SHOULD really learn to knit.   Of course, me being me I have set my heart on fair isle.  I know it is most complicated and tricky, but it is also absolutely beautiful.  And so, here I am documenting  part 1 of my yarny knitting adventure.  

If you have read my previous post you will know that there is still much crochet going on here at the nest too and that will continue as always.

So, yesterday afternoon after Easter Sunday dinner at my parents house, my Mom fetched her hoard of knitting needles and sorted me a pair of 4mm needles…an odd pair, but a pair non the less.

  Mom, then showed me how to cast on and do a knit stitch.  20 stitches per row and set me the task of knitting 20 rows.

I found the knit stitch reassuringly satisfying as the needles made a gentle clicking sound and of course the familiar feel of the yarn in my hands was heart warming.  The 21st stitch that appeared from no where was baffling as was the loopy first stitch in every row.

  I must also stress the responsibility of holding 20 (sometimes 21) stitches on the needle all at the same time instead of the 1 stitch in crochet required much concentration…which after 3 large glasses of wine was a challenge I must confess.    After a good nights sleep I continued  with my task until I noticed something didn’t look quite right, see…

Now, I still am not quite sure what had happened here, but I also couldn’t just leave it.  So I ripped the rows back

recaptured the 20 little stitches and continued until I could count 19 rows and 20 stitches on the needle.  Now I thought do I knit another row to make 20 rows or do the stitches on the needle count as row 20 already???  Cue Mom and another cup of tea and a cast off lesson to!

learning to knit

I am so pleased, but I still have to get this knit stitch nailed. 

I still need to be able to cast on and knit on my own, visually  recognise the stitch so that I can recognise when the stitch is not right.  I need to fix the wibbly edge and cast off on my own too.  So I plan on knitting some more knit stitch squares before progressing to pearling. 

So, I can no longer say I can’t knit, instead I can now say I am learning to knit.

xxxxx