Have you ever…

 Have you ever had one of those conversations with a group of friends, where everyone is being a bit silly and having a laugh, and some idea, or concept is created from the collective, that’s just so funny, bizarre or stupid that you have the urge to somehow make it real? To make it happen?

Meet Reyth Strunmah, riding Calinan.

The crazy collective idea that had to be brought to life amongst myself and my gaming friends, was of a Scottish Kobold, complete with woad, who tosses cabers from his Sporran of Holding whilst riding a corgi. (There was a side conversation about Cowboy Bebop and how Ein is my favourite character)

Let’s take a better look at that corgi, shall we?

This guy is made using the pattern Corgi by Sally Muir and Joanna Osborne from their book ‘Best in Show: Knit your own Dog’.  I later winged a saddle and a set of reigns to fit him.

Now let’s have a better look at my Kobold.

This guy…well…the Kobold body is based on the pattern Bag of Troodons by Tina Barrett, from her book ‘Knitted Dinosaurs’. Then I kinda tweaked him a bit here and there, added some horns and did a whole lot of embroidery…

The kilt? That was fun. I looked at an amazingly clever free pattern – Princess Franklin Plaid Collar by Franklin Habit. Using five colours, garter stitch and a whole lot of patience, you can make something that’s fairly passible for tartan. But I wanted only a tiny piece, and as I was basing it on Black Watch tartan, just needed three colours, so I took the idea and the method and with a bit of tweaking, got myself a teeny tiny Kobold kilt.

The Sporran of Holding? That was just winged. The fluffy effect is loop stitch that I have cut and then combed the loose threads.

And there we have it: Reyth Strunmah and Calinan!

Yes, I am insane. No, I don’t have that much spare time, but I also don’t have a TV. Yes, my friends are also insane, they are gamers, it’s goes hand in hand.

Well, I shall leave you all at that with the wool count, and a photo I call ‘Freedom’.

Wool Count

Starting total – 576

Wool used – 68 (4 used)
Wool bought – 19
Wool given – 155
Wool gifted – 31

Total – 653

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To nerf or not to nerf?

That as indeed been very much the question! Our nerf group is supposed to run every last Sunday of the month, but it was cancelled last week due to rain (anyone in the UK will be more than aware of all the recent floodings) and looks to be cancelled again this week…

Which is a shame as Felix had me make this cute bag for her:

After playing with one of the other club members Vortex nerf blaster (it shoots discs instead of darts, and is super easy to prime and fire do she can do it all herself unaided) she batted her eyelashes at daddy and he got her one. And Inkling too, at least.

Then one of the other club members turned up with one for Felix as, despite not aimed at him, he too fell for those batting eyelashes.

I’m going to have to watch that girl…

Anyways, so we have three nerf blasters that all take discs and Felix rightly pointed out that discs and darts should not mix, so I made a matching bag for the Vortex for all the discs to go live in.

And there’s a lot of discs, we went to buy some and there was a crazy good special on glow in the dark discs…and they really do glow! The fact this bag was so promptly made has nothing to do with the fact the discs were on my bedside table and actually distracting me from sleeping,nope, not at all…

That’s all from me this week, busy with everything and feeling rather poorly as I woke up Thursday morning with no voice. Fridays trip to the doctor confirmed that I had laryngitis, so I get to drink hot honey and lemon water.

I really, really dislike the taste of honey. And fresh squeezed lemon? Not much better….

Wool Count

Starting total – 576

Wool used – 64 (1 used)
Wool bought – 19 (3 more, I needed a pick me up!)
Wool given – 155
Wool gifted – 31

Total – 658

Fleece bought/own – 13 lots, varying quantities…
Fleece washed and bagged – all the above! Now in 10 bags.

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Bees!!!

Buzz buzz buzz!!!!

These are based on the free pattern Teeny Tiny Bumblebee by The Ginger Hooker – larger needles used and I changed the wings.

For those curious, Felix chose bees as the next insect for her mini beast birthday party, having already picked butterflies. I’ve ended knitting over 60 bees as Felix kept giving them away, Inkling decided they were the must have for his bed and my MIL took a shine to them…

Not sure if I’ll make any more insects for the party (she has asked for ladybirds, worms, stick insects and woodlice amongst others) as I have a few other projects lined up first, but we’ll see if I can sneak another one in!

Short post this week, it’s been so hot I’ve not had the energy to do much knitting and certainly not spinning, though almost all the raw fleeces washed!

I have picked up a little table loom which Felix and Engel have had quite a bit of fun with, and subsequently used up some of my odds and ends bits of wool!

Oh, and I’ve joined a new gaming group, well, more a friend is putting together a time and place for people who want to play boardgames, wargames or RPGs to get together and do just that. I have a number of victims – I mean volunteers – who want to play cthulhu with me! I feel an evil laugh coming on…mwahahahaha!!!!!!

Till next week!

Wool Count

Starting total – 576

Wool used – 63 (4 used)
Wool bought – 19 (3 more, I needed a pick me up!)
Wool given – 155
Wool gifted – 31

Total – 659

Fleece bought/own – 13 lots, varying quantities…
Fleece washed and bagged – all the above! Now in 10 bags.

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A mini Minnie

As mentioned area weeks ago, I’m trying to take up spinning and make my own wool. It’s slow going, mainly as I have a lot of fleece that needs washing and carding before I can try spinning, but it’s there.

One thing I need to do all this though is a drop spindle. Before going to the wool experience where I ended up picking up three, I organised a trade:


A beautiful, 3D printed drop spindle (this photo was taken before I attached the hook) in exchange for:

A little knitted replica of his recently deceased kitty, Minnie.

(Pattern used is Tortoiseshell Cat by Sally Muir and Joanna from the book Best in Show: Knit Your Own Cat)

Even though I used a pattern, the markings where all done by eye to match up, as best at I could with wool, the markings on the actual cat. I had six very cute reference photos for the job!

And even though I now have four drop spindles, this newest addition is just lovely to work with…well worth the effort! Though I don’t fancy trying to match Calico cat markings again any time soon!

In other news, I got a little table top loom for Felix, which has been surprisingly fun! She’s finished a bag on it, though I have yet to cut it off, and currently starting a wash cloth for her grandmama! Looks like creativity is running in the family! Photos will come soon once I’ve got them off the loom and all the ends weaved in.

That’s it for now, has been a very busy week at work and at home and an absolutely manic weekend with playdates, christenings and birthday parties all to attend…

Oh, and as I’ve had a few private enquiries regarding last week’s blog post, my sister’s brother in law survived the operation so it’s now just the long road to recovery. He’s not fully out of the woods yet, but definitely over the worst! And the knitted hugs went down well, and didn’t over step any boundaries, so very, very pleased with how it’s all worked out!

Wool Count

Starting total – 576

Wool used – 59 (1 used)
Wool bought – 16 (3 more, mentioned above)
Wool given – 155
Wool gifted – 31

Total – 660

Fleece bought/own – 13 lots, varying quantities…in process of being cleaned  (just three little bags left! The big fleeces have been washed!), carded and combined by sheep breed.

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Knitting hugs

This is a very wordy post, apologies, feel free to scroll down to just the knitting.

Before I moved 300 miles away from home, the duty of fixing my family’s drama fell to both myself and my sister Rabbie. Its been a decade since I moved, and unfortunately I’ve left her with the brunt of dealing with this task alone.

I’ll admit, I feel guilty about it, but having two children of my own, it’s generally coupled with the thought that my plate is full enough already, and a wave of home sickness best left not being dwelt upon.

About a fortnight ago, I found out that her brother in law was in a very, very bad way and going in for a major operation with a 50/50 chance of survival.

It was going to fall to my sister to help keep her husband’s family together, to be the shoulder to cry on and to say the right things and keep the world turning for them all.

My reaction: she needed a hug.

But I’m 300 miles away.

So I made her one.

(Clapotis by Kate Gilbert, a beautiful, simple and effective free pattern.)

A long time ago, an old lady told me about prayer shawls (she was making one), at the time I didn’t think much of them, not being religious, but now I see there place in the grand scheme of things.

The energy and need to do something whilst not knowing what I should, and the worry and concern I have, can be knitted into something beautiful that can offer someone comfort.

A hug, that can be worn when I’m not there to give her one.

Wool Count

Starting total – 576

Wool used – 58 (2 used)
Wool bought – 16 (3 more, mentioned above)
Wool given – 155
Wool gifted – 31

Total – 661

Fleece bought/own – 13 lots, varying quantities…in process of being cleaned  (three lots of washing), carded and combined by sheep breed.

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Husky!!!

The title of this post has definitely given the game away over the knit to show you this week!

This is made following the pattern Siberian Husky by Sally Muir and Joanna Osborne from the book Knit Your Own Dog: Easy-to-Follow Patterns for 25 Pedigree Pooches.

The reason behind this cutie is based on the events that occurred the other week, which I mentioned in this blog post.

Short story: Engels motorbike died. Engels motorbike was revived temporarily. Person who helped revive motorbike also helped him find new replacement motorbike. New replacement motorbike is very, very nice. And called Meowzebub.

Said very lovely person also owns four huskies and a collie. I got lots of doggy cuddles that day. And as a thank you for helping us out for near enough a whole day at incredibly short notice, literally the night before, Engel suggested I make a replica of one of her huskies.

Isn’t he cute?

There may be the rest of the pack on its way eventually, I believe that’s in debate…

In other news, today was The Wool Experience! And my friends Sisterex and Charisobelle have convinced me to pick up spinning as a new hobby. Or to at least try it. So I went to get a little bit of sheep fluff and a drop spindle.

Yeah…

I now two whole fleeces, 5 little sample bags of different fleeces and 3 drop spindles. Sisterex also gave me three lots of commercial fluff I gave her the other year as it wound up in my stash by accident and Charisobelle also gave me three little bags of fluff in different washed stages so I could see the differences each step made and could practice on those for washing myself.

I think I need to learn this hobby, and get competent in it, pretty quick…

Oh, and I also picked up three skeins of undyed wool for me to have a play with my dyes some more…

Wool Count

Starting total – 576

Wool used – 56 (Still no change…)
Wool bought – 16 (3 more, mentioned above)
Wool given – 155
Wool gifted – 31

Total – 663 (It went up!)

Fleece bought/own – 13 lots, varying quantities…

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Socks, socks, socks…

As the title says, socks!

Socks!

Socks!!

Yeah…I went a little sock mad…I blame Rabbie. She came down for the rather soggy doggy day and the night before her visit mentioned wellies, so Felix wanted her cat welly socks.

Then Engel rubbed it in that he had cat welly socks.

So cat welly socks for me jumped the knitting queue! All of the above socks resulted from this rather rash decision I’m afraid to admit! All of them are based on the pattern I used for Engel’s cat socks – Quick Kilt Hose by Jessica Correa but I tweaked the needle sizes and stitch numbers to get a better fit.

The first pair came out a smidge small, but a perfect fit for the MIL, so I removed the cuff and off those went to her. Second pair came out purr-fect and I finally got my cat welly socks!

But I had a bit of wool left, and Rabbie has the same size of feet as me, though they’re slowly being crippled by arthritis, and she really deserved a bit of TLC and a thank you for pulling out all the stops to make the soggy doggy weekend work…

So the striped pair practically fell off the needles for her! Not that she needs real wool socks in this sudden heat…

Oh well, winter is never far off in this country!

In non knitting news, the website gallery page is finally updated so you can see my 10+ years of finished projects that were actually photographed and recorded. Engel has his new bike, and she’s a beauty, so that’s one disaster nicely squared off, and we’ve had a busy weekend with the local village festival yesterday and nerfing today. I ache, badly, but it’s my own fault for throwing myself down grassy hills and into sandy bunkers to try and pick off the other team and not get hit…

Till next week!

Wool Count

Starting total – 576

Wool used – 56 (No change…)
Wool bought – 13
Wool given – 155
Wool gifted – 31

Total – 660 (No change…)

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Of Butterflies and Bikes

Well, motorbikes. Which is what I’ll start on then I’ll get to the butterflies.

On Friday, Engels motorbike died. We knew that she had begun to slowly mechanically deteriorate, as all things do with wear and tear and the lovely state of British roads. She was a work horse of a motorbike and did a 40 mile round commute everyday in sun, sleet and snow. So when she died, Engel was left in a rather awkward predicament or requiring a motorbike to commute to work, as he cant feasibly get there via public transport, as fast as possible but with no actual savings to get one.

Yesterday (Saturday) we called upon a few favours and managed to get someone with motorbike know how to, firstly, breathe a few more last breaths into the old motorbike, and then go with Engel to kick some tyres and find a replacement. It was a long day, and I ended up driving for a total of 4 hours (but there was lots of doggy cuddles, four huskies and a collie!), but a new lovely lady of a motorbike was found and we just have to get Engels poor workhorse of a motorbike to last a few more days until everything is in place to get the new one.

Not going into any great details, but I now have a motorbike to pay off, so I’m officially reopening commissions – since Felix was born I’ve pretty much only been making things upon request for  friends and family (and work colleagues, as Yorrick is proof of) but as of now, anyone can request one. Full details on the commissions page.

I’m curious to see what requests get made, I’ve had quite a few interesting ones in the past – life sized knitted recreations of peoples pets, items from games or movies, a knitted womb that would double as a purse… (that last one wasn’t made in the end, after it was explained to me that it was going to be a ‘congratulations on your hysterectomy’ gift, I didn’t feel it would go down well and I do like to think I have a pretty dark sense of humour)

Now, onto the butterflies!

Felix has asked for a ‘mini beasts’ birthday this year (for those wondering what a mini beast is, its now the ‘correct’ term for creepy crawlies, insects, bugs etc – schools didn’t feel it fair on the insects to cast a negative light on them by calling them creepy). Her birthday isn’t until September but I figured that insects would make nice, small, travel sized knits.

So I started with butterflies…

Using the pattern Common Blue Butterfly by Lesley Stanfield from her book 100 Flowers to Knit & Crochet

I made a lot of butterflies.

But they were so good for using up scraps…

And using my hand dyed wool…

Oh, and I needed moths too!

After realising there was about 50, or maybe more, of the things I decided I had to make myself stop and choose a new insect for travel knitting. When I finish with that one, I’ll do another post like this one!

I’m going to go and get back to knitting some socks now (a very ‘normal’ knit for me I must say!) and working out which husky pattern to cast on next as a thank you for the motorbike friend…

Wool Count

Starting total – 576

Wool used – 56 (8 this week!!)
Wool bought – 13
Wool given – 155
Wool gifted – 31

Total – 660

 

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Commonsensical knits

I admit, I just love the word commonsensical, but it summarises this past knit I’ve been saving, as well as what I currently have on the needles.

Yep, commonsensical means practical, and in this case that means arm warmers, which given the current awful weather is very practical indeed!

Pattern used is a free one: Fingerless Gloves “Leaves” by Valentina Georgieva and the reason behind it is also relatively straightforward.

During the last visit from my mum, she dug out and commented on how I had so many lovely pairs of armwarmers, perhaps I could part with a few?

No chance. I politely declined and instead offered to make her a pair. Another pair.’ I’ve previously made her three pairs and she’s ‘borrowed’ another pair, so she isn’t lacking in them!

In non knitting news, this weekend Rabbie and Missy came to visit and we went to a very soggy dog fest. My sister summarises the whole thing perfectly on her blog, so I suggest those curious go there and read it!

After all the soggy doggy cuddles and countless loads of laundry, I’m exhausted, so going to call this post quits, but not before the wool count!

I’m so happy the total keeps going down!

Wool Count

Starting total – 576

Wool used – 48 (2 this week!!)
Wool bought – 13
Wool given – 155
Wool gifted – 31

Total – 668

 

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Watermelon!

One of Andrews cousins is having their first child, a little girl, due June/July, and I couldn’t resist making this adorable set for when the little baby arrives!

I used the following free patterns for this set:

Watermelon Baby Cardigan by Stitchylinda Designs

Watermelon Baby Hat by Stitchylinda Designs

Basic Mary Jane Baby Booties by Christy Hills

The first two are made pretty much as written, but with red rather than pink wool, and I just played about with the colour placement/changes to make the bootees match the rest of the set.

Very pleased with how it came out! Can’t wait till the baby arrives to send them!

In other knitting news I’m still ticking away on a different ongoing project, and not sure when it’s going to stop, but it’s been great for using up all my odds and ends and scraps! Which means the wool count is going down pretty quick!

More about that in a week or two when I hopefully decide I’m done!

In non knitting news, it’s been a busy week at work and a fun weekend – a wooly playdate with Sisterix which included a wander down some trails, a hedgemaze for the kids, and a stroll through Broadbottoms Midsummer yarnbomb!

If your in the area, it’s in until the end of June and I do recommend going for a stroll! Though maybe in drier weather, we had to time our stops to view the various pieces between rain showers!

Today it was another playdate at the Didsbury beer festival, I was designated driver but had a good time catching up on all the gossip and getting a bit of knitting done!

That’s all for now.

Wool Count

Starting total – 576

Wool used – 46 (12 this week!!)
Wool bought – 13
Wool given – 155
Wool gifted – 31

Total – 670

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