This unbirthday cake, inspired by the one given to Alice in Disney’s animated Alice in Wonderland, is based on the free pattern Wedding Cake by Helena Keighley
“Now, statistics prove, prove that you’ve one birthday
Imagine, just one birthday every year
Ah, but there are three hundred and sixty four unbirthdays!
Precisely why we’re gathered here to cheer”
So just why are we celebrating Rabbies unbirthday? Because she’s been going above and beyond this entire lockdown – helping family, friends, neighbours. Working a new crazy shift to help keep the countrys clean water flowing. Tutoring my niece in two subjects, phoning our mum every day, checking in on all of us regularly to make sure that we’re all ok, and also to tell us that it’s ok to not be ok.
She even went and donated blood the other day – as Engel said, she’s not so much burning the candle at both ends as putting a blow torch to it. So her husband decided that she was going to have a day off, be pampered and reminded that she is important too, that we all love her for being her.
Hence the unbirthday cake from me, and because I couldn’t resist…
A hammer bird! again inspired by Disney’s animated Alice in Wonderland, and based on the free pattern Songbird by Sara Elizabeth Kellner.
Take care and stay safe – and if you need a treat, remember, it’s your unbirthday too!
Starting total – 704
Wool used – 53 (7 this week!!!) Wool bought – 7 Wool given – 8 Wool gifted – 0
A friend of mine does a bonfire/Halloween fancy dress party every year, and after being rescheduled several times, finally happened last night. The theme this year? Lovecraftian Horror!
After much debate, I settled on myself and Engel being cultists of Shub Niggurath, (Black Goat of the Wood with a Thousand Spawn) and Felix and Inkling went as two of the said spawn.
Rabbie did me a huge favour in putting together a pair of awesome cultists robes (that double up as jedi robes and wanderers of the apocalypse robes) Edit: just linked to her blog post about the cultists robes and it made me laugh, I took my two to a cthulhu themed party, complete with bonfire, and she’s taken the fur baby to Santa Paws…
Anyhow, so all I had to do was whip up four pairs of hats with horns! Which I started monday. Oops.
Managed it more or less and super pleased with the outcome!
These are made based on the pattern Skull by Vanessa Mooncie from her book “Monster Hats: 15 Scary Head-Warmers to Knit”
Ready for the full effect?
I’ve positioned it so you can see inside the cloak and see all the eyes of the other 998 spawn yet to be summoned. Felix wore her knitted sheep costume from a long time ago, plus hat, and Inkling had his bear costume on, with goat horn hat rather than bear hat.
All in all, we made for an adorable family set! I’m also pleased to say a lot of people also turned up dressed, and there was an amazing Hastur and a good number of people with that ‘Innsmouth Look’ about them!
Will leave it at that, see you all next week!
Starting total – 576
Wool used – 107 (2 this week) Wool bought – 63 Wool given – 167 (was gifted four balls this week) Wool gifted – 31
Total – 667 (If I use one more ball, it’ll be the number of the beast! Or would that be knit of the beast?)
First of all I shall start with this weekends activities – The Winter Battle of BritNerf! Fridays battle as held in a skatepark, and I’ll be honest, it was chaos. I hit it too hard, too fast, and hadn’t eaten properly because of driving all the way up to Scotland, and about half way through went all wobbly. Once I had eaten and recharged I was good to go, and 15 seconds into humans Vs zombies, I got tackled and had I been on anything other than the smooth skate ramp, I’d have been fine, but instead went down, along with the ‘zombie’ and landed hard on my left wrist.
One of my fellow team members immediately called in first aid and I had an ice pack on it in under a minute and a very thorough apology from the Zombie. After twenty minutes I realised my wrist was definitely sprained and the drive to Rabbies was rather painful.
Worse still, I couldn’t knit. The horror!
Saturday saw the main event, a close quarters combat scenario, and in this set of games in tight narrow corridors with small areas to hide and hunker down and also to snipe the ‘enemy’ – myself and Engel where in our element! Despite my sore wrist making me unable to prime any blasters (thank goodness for flywheels!) I lasted the majority of the games, and instead only had to call it quite after being literally smoked out.
Asthma and smoke bombs in confined areas, not a great combo. I missed the last two games and due to even more smoke bombs, decided not to dart sweep and instead tidied the resting/set up area.
And despite taking it easy on the wrist, no knitting on Saturday either…
Overall, a great weekend, made better by good company and my sister’s fantastic sweet treats and her adorable dog, Missy. I wouldn’t go to the effort of the four hour drive for the skate park again, despite being fun, just not quite my cup of tea, but for another close quarter game? Definitely!
I’m just doing some research into gas masks that would be suitable for nerfing in, and which I can easily purchase filters for…
In knitting news, I shipped up my holiday knits, some very boring but incredibly good stash busting dish/washcloths!
In more interesting knitting news, Engel managed to somehow sell one hat to two people. He nearly sold it to three before it was realised. What hat was it?
My dead Blinky hat! The original was a commission that fell through (hence why I now ask for half payment up front) and was never actually photographed and recorded anywhere. This is the second, and as most have probably already guessed, made following the free Knitty pattern Fish Hat [Dead or Alive?] by Thelma Egberts.
That’s enough nattering for now, I need to rub some life back into my legs following this weekends mad activity! Mine aren’t too bad, more stuff than sore, Engels though…
Starting total – 576
Wool used – 105 (0 this week) Wool bought – 63 (I fell off the wool wagon hard this weekend, there was a few absolute bargains of wool I really like that’s being discontinued so I stocked up…33 balls…In fairness, my guilt from doing this meant I bought Engel a Hades (a very, very big Nerf blaster!)) Wool given – 163 Wool gifted – 31
Total – 665 (If I buy one more ball, it’ll be the number of the beast! Or would that be knit of the beast?)
It’s my favourite time of year, the weather is growing colder, the leaves are turning red, all the winter knits can finally be brought out and worn and best of all, Halloween!
Because if Halloween landing on a Thursday this year, we’ve managed to spread it over a whole week. The Manchester Halloweekend, Felix’s school spooky disco (the only one she will go to) actual Halloween and trick or treating, then friends coming round for games and far too much food…
For Engels costume I dug out my oldest WIP, and after 30 minutes of detail work, it was finished. Part of me feels rather ashamed of was sat in s corner for four years, the other part of me is chalking it down to experience…
A facehugger! This guy is of my design, the pattern notes for it is long gone, so it’s one of a kind too. Which is a shame, but that’s life!
Did everyone else have a spook-tacular Halloween?
But wait, there’s more!
It was my mum’s 60th a few weeks ago (it was dances of the decades with an encouragement for people to dress up) and my present was paying towards the big party bash. But I wanted to give my mum something as well, and Rabbie handmade an awesome elephant patchwork quilt, but what stereotypical gift do you give a 60 year old woman?
Elephant slippers (to match the blanket)
So I made these:
The Cuddliest Kitty Slippers by Janine Peter, a free pattern, tweaked a little as I prefer slippers to cover the ankle. But that’s a cat, I hear you say.
So I took those, combined it with ‘Elephant’ from Sarah Keens book ‘100 Little Knitted Projects’ and got…
Aren’t they adorable?! And we’ll received. My mum’s hinting at having more slippers…
Starting total – 576
Wool used – 103 (2 used) Wool bought – 30 Wool given – 163 Wool gifted – 31
At long last, the final dog has been knit! I present to you all…
I made him following the pattern Border Collie by Sally Muir and Joanna Osborne from the book Best in Show: Knit your own Dog.
I really enjoyed this particular knit, not sure if it’s because it wasn’t a husky or if the pattern was simpler nicer and easier to read, but I did enjoy it.
However, I am far more looking forward to knitting something that isn’t a dog!
So many choices…
In other news, I snuck off on Thursday to have a playdate of my own with Rabbie and ‘the girls’ (which included her husband, but that’s totally fine, he knows how to talk the talk!) and had a great time running about like a lunatic at Alton Towers. I went on the new ride, Wicker Man, and for being built out of wood, it’s so very, very metal!
There’s been work, kids party’s, and after three sessions, we managed to finish off our “one shot” of Pathfinder, featuring none other than Reyth Strunmah and Calinan. He now has a very impressive battle axe. And a tiny Haggis.
Till next week!
Starting total – 576
Wool used – 82 (1 used) Wool bought – 19 Wool given – 157 (2 as birthday presents!) Wool gifted – 31
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!
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.
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!
Starting total – 576
Wool used – 56 (No change…) Wool bought – 13 Wool given – 155 Wool gifted – 31
Rabbie asked me to do a Mary Poppins/Mrs Tiggy-Winkle mash-up and like any crazy knitter up for a challenge…
The main body of the pattern is based on the Alan Dart Mrs Tiggy-Winkle pattern I made last time, with some colour changes, a few tweaks and some extras. Such as…
The hat comes from the pattern Emily by Jean Greenhowe, it’s one of her knitted dolls, but the hat was perfect! And I couldn’t resist putting it on Crumble, she looks so cute in hats! Even if she gives me death glares for it…
Winged the carpet bag, a must for Mary Poppins and probably one of my favourite parts of the whole movie, but I used the free chart from Headband ‘Roses’ by Ann Linderhjelm
For this one, I used the free pattern Quick Mini Yarn Parasols by Amanda Williams, but added extra stitches and worked it on larger needles.
It was a big project, and took a fair bit of time, but I’m really pleased with it. I hope Rabbie likes it as much as I do!
Especially the hat.
I may have to make one for Crumble…
Starting total – 576
Wool used – 8 (Three more down!) Wool bought – 2 Wool given – 0 Wool gifted – 0