Heartsease

This is more a do you or do you know anyone who would like to be involved in this post than a blog entry.

On Friday I went to Creative Stitches, while I was there I met Ruth and Belinda, and got a bit crazy fangirly because it was actually them, the real people from the pictures on their things! Craziness aside, they are the creators of Heartease.

heartseaselogo_square

Heartsease is a createathon to make as many heart bags for Kids Company who are a London based charity who work with neglected and abused children. The heart bags are to be used in therapy sessions with boys and girls, so boy hearts and girl hearts please.

Details of where to send hearts and patterns can be found here, along with more information about Kids Company.

Again, if you or anyone you know would like to take part, this is running form now until Valentine’s Day 2014. Thank you.


Zig Zag Lace Cowl, my first pattern

While I was putting together the parcel for my Green Swap partner, I decided that I wanted to do more, that I needed another homemade item and I wanted to make a cowl to go with the mitts but not match.

So I thought about the size it would need to be, about the patterns that look nice, something simple but pretty, not too busy, something that would be warm but not overly so.

I decided on a simple lace pattern, inspired by the lace section on a shawl I made where there is a pattern in the middle and lace section which follow the direction of the edge, the left side leans left, the right side leans right. I didn’t want the cowl to curl up, so I needed a base of stitching before the lace section. I thought it should have no definite up or down direction, we’ve all gone out with a top on inside out or something and it’s always fun when someone else points it out, LOUDLY. Finally I decided on my pattern, a moss stitch edge, equally wide on both edges and enough to show it’s pattern own diagonal pattern. Then I considered the sections of lace, how wide, how many and how green (well it was a GREEN swap).

Well after all the build up, here it is, my first pattern.

If there are any mistakes I’m sorry, let me know. 

Zig Zag Lace Cowl

Zig Zag Lace Cowl

Zig Zag Lace Cowl

Suggested Yarn and Materials

Aran weight yarn in as few or as many colours as you want. I used Rico Designs Essentials Soft Merino Aran (Fern and Beige)

5mm 16” circular needles

Stitch marker

Gauge, yarn weight and needle size are flexible. My gauge for the moss stitch section is 5 stitches by 7 rows per inch

 

Abbreviations

K, knit

P, purl

K2tog, knit 2 together

SSK, slip stitch knit wise, slip next stitch knitwise, knit them together through the back loop

Yo, yarn over

K2togbl, knit 2 together through back loop

 

Pattern

Cast on 120 stitches, place stitch marker and join.

Knit 10 rows of moss stitch:

Rows 1 and 2: k2, p2, repeat to end

Rows 3 and 4: p2, k2, repeat to end

Rows 5 and 6: repeat rows 1 and 2

Rows 7 and 8: repeat rows 3 and 4

Rows 9 and 10; repeat rows 1 and 2

 

Begin first left leaning lace section:

Row 1: k2tog, yo, repeat to end

Row 2: knit to end

Repeat these two rows until section reaches desired length. I did a 5-pattern repeat for each lace section.

 

If changing colour between sections add additional knit row

 

Begin right leaning lace section:

Row 1: yo, ssk, repeat to end

Row 2: Knit to end

Repeat these two rows until section reaches desired length. I did a 5-pattern repeat for each lace section.

 

After the first two lace sections, I repeated the left leaning section in my second colour before changing back to my first colour for another right leaning section.

Once you reach your desired length or number of zig zag sections, repeat the 10 row moss stitch edge.

 

Bind off

I use a stretchy bind off because I tend to knit tightly.

K2, move stitches from left to right needle, k2togbl, k1, move stitches from left to right needle, k2togbl until all stitches are bound off.

It can also be on ravelry for free download now


The Green Swap reaches Germany and a day out for me

My green swap arrived with my partner a few days ago, thankfully she loved it as much as I loved mine! I have decided that ‘parcel paranoia’ is part of a swap that most of us get. But I guess that worrying shows that you care what your partner thinks and as long as you send a parcel you would be happy to receive then you can’t go wrong.

The whole parcel

The whole parcel

The handmades

The handmades

I used Rico Design Essential Soft Merino in Fern for the Winter Leaf Mitts and for the cowl adding the same yarn in Beige to break up the darkness of the green. I made the pattern for the cowl as I went along but I did make a pattern for it.

The goodies

The goodies

From talking to my partner I knew that she would like some English fudge, so I chose Traditional Vanilla, Chocolate and Coffee from the fudgery. I also knew that cotton was a favourite yarn, so Pistachio Rico Creative Cotton Aran seemed a perfect fit. For little extras green leaf stitch markers and a green box went in too, topped off with hand cream and Terry Pratchett’s The Colour of Magic book. This is the first Discworld novel and in messages I had talked about my love of all things Pratchett and Ulrike had said she would like to read something by him. For me, the natural step was where can I find the first book in German? Even when you are fluent in another language, your native tongue is different and I think feels more comfortable.

The next day I went up to a creative stitches and hobbycraft show, which while not quite what we expected still meant I spoiled myself a bit with some gorgeous packs of Sublime Baby Silk and Bamboo DK in Beansprout and Wonton, beautiful colours for the eventual spring and summer, maybe some light shawls or wraps, and some cute fabrics for bags. All in all a good week for me.


Three times in one day ;) or my rainbow swap partner got her parcel

My parcel arrived at lunch time and given the time distance so did my partners!

I was terrified from the moment I sent it that it wouldn’t be good enough or rainbowy enough or that she wouldn’t like it. Even more so once I saw ohter parcels and received mine.

So what is the verdict? She loves it.

The biggest part for me was making a lace and bead cowl, that has been named Tracey’s Cowl of Awesomeness, which I made super huge like a caplet or to be doubled up for a cowl. I had never made a cowl before or done so much beading but it was definitley worth it. 

Happily the Care Bears rainbow drawstring project bag was also a win, but who doesn’t love the Care Bears right?  Then there’s some Knitting Goddess SparkLynn rainbow minis, leaf and flower stitch markers, fairy wishes (cause we all have wishes), Malteaser bunnies (cause chocolate bunnies), some Cherry Rowan Colourscape Chunky (I stalked my partner and saw that she wanted to try this and loves red and pink), a mixed fruit tea pack and a gluten free baking book (my lovely partner loves to bake but can’t eat gluten 😦 bad times). So to make my amazing day even better, we both got our parcels and are both over the moon at being spoilt so well. Said it before and I’ll say it again, Best Day Ever!

The rest of the parcel

The rest of the parcel

The main event

The main event


My Rainbow Swap Arrived!

BEST DAY EVER! I had lost track of time today and the doorbell rang, so I run downstairs and its a rainbow balloon parcel! This was my first swap in the Pagan Friendly Swap group and I was truly spoiled. Now I will subject you to a photo bomb and full detailing of my lovely surprises form my amazing partner in Dallas.

All this in one parcel

All this in one parcel

So once I saw all this, I had a little squee and the boys came in to see what was going on. The little was determined to ‘help’ me open it all. I got rainbow wrists, a tarot card wrap, a gorgeous shawlette and shawl pin and a beautiful Isis.

Like a unicorn with a rainbow tail

      Like a unicorn with a rainbow tail

My golden Tarot wrap

My golden Tarot wrap

Isis and her crown of crystals

Isis and her crown of crystals

My everything!

My everything!

There’s a Mochi plus, which is mega lush, some awesome note cards with rainbow windmills on them, some sticky notes, a shawl pattern, some markers, holy basil tea, a rainbow of tea lights, a colour themed cd and a card with a really lovely message inside!

Now if my package would arrive to my partner I can get over my nervousness/paranoia of not being good enough and post photos of that too!

 

 

 


Dissertations and distractions.

I finished the lab work and now it’s just the writing up and it is amazing how many things you can distract yourself with when it comes to writing up the project your whole qualification hinges on.

Further distracts are the boys, the little is just plain chaos at the moment and the big has been suffering possible migraines for months. And then I saw him have what may or may not have been a seizure! So now we wait, for the hospital referral, for the tests, for the diagnosis. 

In the mean time…… I finished up my green swap and decided to add more. And made up a pattern for a cowl to put in. I was very excited and proud of myself and I’ll post that when it arrives in Germany. I’m also stalking my rainbow swap so I can post the photos of that too.

At the moment I’m also planning more swaps, they are addictive, I have a blue swap, a Beltane swap, a card swap and two more in the pipeline, my very first tinyowlknits swap and a LORD OF THE RINGS swap (nerd girl freak out here) I love seeing the photos on the thread and seeing how excited everyone gets about all the packages.

In other news I have started training for the Race for Life. I am incredible unfit, I’m overweight and now I’m starting to swim and use the couch25k app that was recommended to me by a friend (and I need to start a diet). I will be taking part in the Hastings race in June. Once I set up my sponsorship details I will post the link or come join in too!