So last week, I very briefly mentioned that I had spun some dog hair. Allow me to go into a little bit more detail now. So, my work colleague who has now left has the most gorgeous collie, Holly:

And we had previously had a few conversations about my spinning and trying some interesting fibres, like reindeer, and how I wanted to try more types. She commented that her dog Holly had hair with a lot of the qualities I was speaking about – a good long staple, a fine crimp… And so:

This is 13 meters of pure, unblended, collie fur. I was given a ‘small’ quantity and was very pleased with the softness, staple and crimp. It spun beautifully, those due to the softness of it, I had to go quite slow compared to most sheep fleece. So, goal achieved, what do I do with it?

Knit a teeny tiny Holly of course! I very loosely followed the free pattern Small Sausage Dog by Amanda Berry – it was the smallest I could find and given I only had 13 meters…well, a bit of tweaking and voila, a collie! The white detailing is some white Jacobs fleece I have spun previously, and the brown eyes is some suffolk-texel fleece that I had dyed with fresh coffee grounds.

I have to say, I am super impressed with how this whole project has come out from start to finish. It’s not often that an experiment done completely on a whim with no planning actually works out!

I’m going to give the wool count here, and then finish off with some sad news, as I feel it’s more respectful that way.

Wool Count

Starting total – 897

Wool used – 21 (5 this week)
Wool bought – 0
Wool given to me – 0
Wool gifted to others – 1
Wool handspun – 7 (3 this week)

Total – 882 (a net total of 2 down)

On a much sadder note, my eldest and very beloved cat Crumble crossed the rainbow bridge yesterday morning. She has always been a fighter and had a habit of defeating the odds. Going from an incredibly awful start, she was deemed too emotionally damaged to be rehomed, and so we took her in as our first and only foster fail. In October she was badly injured after going missing for two weeks, the vets didn’t expect her to survive but she did. And out of sheer stubbornness she got an extra four and a bit months of love and cuddles.

May she enjoy herself across the rainbow bridge, eating all the boiled eggs she wants and continuing to be Queen.

RIP Crumble.

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It’s been an interesting week, half term and being in furlough for half a week meant I got up to a lot of mischief with the kids. Well, as much as you can given the current time of plague.

There’s been baking, bike rides, dancing, colouring and painting, building dens and other activities. Between this, I managed a little spinning (need more for my big project, it’s eating the handspun!) and a bit of penguin knitting. Yes, they are still marching.

I do however have one new knit to show, a little good bye and good luck gift for a colleague whom I’ve worked with on and off for eight years…

This is Cat in a Life Preserver by Anna Hrachovec, in this case, the black cat is for the fact that she gave me the loveable kitty Dashie, the life preserver as it’s joked that when it rains we need them for our work, and a little four leaf clover for good luck.

I left that in her desk and in exchange, she left me a bag of her collies hair, which I had mentioned I wanted to try and spin. And I have. But more on that next week!

Wool Count

Starting total – 897

Wool used – 16 (2 this week)
Wool bought – 0
Wool given to me – 0
Wool gifted to others – 1
Wool handspun – 4

Total – 884

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The weather has been bitterly cold as of late, to the point the duck pond near us has completely frozen over. As such, I have been going through our stock of tea like crazy!

It’s been a quiet week all told. Work is quiet, so much so near all of us are on part time furlough – feels strange only doing three day weeks but I imagine I will quickly enjoy it! It will also give me a chance to do all those jobs round the house I have put off all winter, as it’s been too cold or wet…

Chinese New year, usually a big occasion, was also quiet. Felix, upon seeing her red envelope, was initially excited, before stating “Oh, it’s lockdown. There won’t be the dragon parade or dancing lions”. After speaking with Rabbie, it was decided that if there is no official dragon parade, then we will have our own! It’s amazing what Engel can produce with cardboard, fabric and a glue gun! The kids decorated his creation, and with some red fabric, we had our own parade!

It was chaos, and there was more falling over laughing than parading, but it was so nice to hear laughter! There was also Skype calls with both Engels family, and my own, and it was actually really nice.

Felix’s best friends birthday is today, and we arranged a small meeting at the park to exchange presents and let the kids fun around. The cold kept the visit short, and we all welcomed hot showers, fluffy pyjamas and tea when we got in!

Which leads me to this week’s knitting news – part of the gift given today!

A striped butterfly hat and a tiny cup and saucer with milk and a biscuit. The latter part of that gift was actually a request she had given me three times so I figured her birthday was the perfect time to cave and make her it!

The pattern for the cup and saucer is Teacup and Saucer by Sarah Keen from her book ‘100 Little Knitted Projects’ and the cookie is a free mochimochi land pattern!

That’s all for this week, until next, stay safe!

Wool Count

Starting total – 897

Wool used – 14 (1 this week)
Wool bought – 0
Wool given to me – 0
Wool gifted to others – 0
Wool handspun – 4

Total – 887

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So Inkling has taken to watching a show in Netflix called Gabby’s Dollhouse, which is very much cats, cats cats! His favourite character is MerCat:

Yes, she’s a cat mermaid, or a purrmaid? He likes her best as she’s A) Pretty and B) a scientist like mummy. Too cute! So when he asked if I could make him one…how could I refuse? I modified the free pattern My Little Purrmaid by Myka Watson to create:

Inklings very own MerCat!

In other knitting news, the penguins are still matching in to 60 of them, and my other big project is in time out whilst I work out the maths for the border…

No spinning and not much else happening, lockdown is still on so between that and the poor weather, we’ve not managed much here other than some baking, kids craft and playing games of all descriptions! Oh, speaking of games, I now have two Cthulhu groups – double the death and double the insanity, loving it!

Till next week, stay safe!

Wool Count

Starting total – 897

Wool used – 13 (1 this week)
Wool bought – 0
Wool given to me – 0
Wool gifted to others – 0
Wool handspun – 4

Total – 888

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Remember how I mentioned that I was going to have to knit a few more Pokémon hats? Well the terrors took the decision out of my hands and demanded a set of hats that matched their cuddly Pokémon toys.

So without further ado I present…

We have Inklings Espeon on the left and Felix’s Umbreon on the right, with the matching hat/toy. These are two of the evolution choices for Eevee, which I knitted a hat version of previously…

With a bit of luck, that will be the last hat for a while. Unless I knit myself one. Still debating just which one mind…

It’s a short list this week as I have been really under the weather – it’s not the plague! But I have definitely lost my enthusiasm and energy this week. On top of finishing those hats off, I did manage to spin and ply the ball of wool I needed to keep working on my other big project – hopefully I can reveal that soon!

So until next week, keep safe!

Wool Count

Starting total – 897

Wool used – 12 (3 this week)
Wool bought – 0
Wool given to me – 0
Wool gifted to others – 0
Wool handspun – 4 (1 this week)

Total – 889 (Back to last week’s total!)

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It’s been a quiet week for the most part, which is good, I don’t think we could all handle any more crazy! Though speaking of crazy…last night we did an early Burns Night celebration with the family on Skype. There was poetry readings, show and tell, gossip, laughter and general shenanigans.

My home sickness has been bad throughout lockdown. Typically I visit my family three to four times a year and a handful of the family visit me once or twice in return. This hasn’t happened. I’ve moped, and sulked, and played the ‘what if’ game but last night, I realised it had morphed, very slowly, to a sweet pang of nostalgia. A contented ‘this is good’ rather than a ‘I want more’. My friend from Australia told me at the start of the pandemic that this would happen and despite me disbelief at the time, yeah, it really does.

On a less sappy note, knitting! Penguins are plodding on their long march to December, my other big project is ticking away in the background but I know already it’ll soon be in hold so I can spin more wool for it, and a quick little knit was slipped in at the kids request:

Its the same free pattern (Snake Coil Cowl by Ariel Woods) that I knit previously my Felix – the terrors fell in love with this slow gradient wool and with the weather being so wet and soggy and things needing constantly washed and/or dried, it made sense for them to have a spare.

Hence my Sssleepy snake pun at the statrt. I am sleepy. I think the world is feeling the same so I won’t sit here and moan.

Not much else to report at the moment, so until next week, stay safe.

Wool Count

Starting total – 897

Wool used – 9 (2 this week)
Wool bought – 0
Wool given to me – 0
Wool gifted to others – 0
Wool handspun – 3

Total – 891 (Back to last week’s total!)

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Hello all, I hope your surviving this current lockdown without too much crazy. This week has been a much quieter week for me, and a lot less stressful. As such, the urge to curl up and sleep, or perhaps just hibernate, has been calling me like a sirens song…

But alas, sleep is rarely an option.

In knitting news, I don’t have any small projects that I have finished to show you, so instead I will go into some more detail about my two big projects. One involves a lot of spinning as it’s a sizable item made from my handspun with a story behind it. But you’ll have to wait for more on that.

Instead I shall go into more detail on my other project. After knitting and putting together 60 Christmas tree wreaths decorations in under two weeks, I swore never again. So I have started on Christmas 2021 decorations now – if I knit between one and two a week, it will be done in time for the kids to give to their classmates. I work on this at work, between projects, when I should be spinning but am too tired to, and as my generic fidget now I have the pattern memorised.

So, third week of the year, I should have between three and six, right?

There’s 18. Either they’re breeding or I’m procrastinating. At this rate I’ll be starting Christmas decorations 2022 this year! Pattern is Christmas Tree Decorations by Alan Dart, and yes, I am aware they have no eyes, no one has agreed as to what colour they should be and until then, I’m not putting any on!

That’s all for this week, stay safe, and I’ll see you next week, unless I really do hibernate!

Wool Count

Starting total – 897

Wool used – 7 (1 this week)
Wool bought – 0
Wool given to me – 0
Wool gifted to others – 0
Wool handspun – 3 (hooray, I spun lots!)

Total – 893 (Up by two, but that’s because of the handspun, so as I stated in the first post for the year, it doesn’t count! Stash processed is stash processed!)

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Despite my best wishes and hopes, the start of 2021 was far more eventful than I wanted. That said, it wasn’t all bad!

The worst part was that, as I suspected, we’ve been put into lockdown again. So no school for the terrors, but unlike last time, I’m not on furlough. Cue many sleepless nights, much stressing and general feelings of despair. But, it all worked out. Both myself and Engel have been deemed as critical workers and we have secured places for both Terrors at school and nursery.

On a better, eventful note, I was surprised by a review video of my knitted Escher Ganger!

You can watch it here!

More eventful news, I won a toy pattern and two sweater patterns through the Wild Knitting challenge! I am really looking forward to doing some knitting for me, but I really need to reduce the stash before I can justify buying two sweater quantities of wool! I’m working on it, managed to burn through 6 balls this week!

In less eventful news, I have managed some spinning for one of my big projects, been plodding away at my year long project and finished a quick little one for Engel just last night which I will share now!

It’s Snorlax! Engel demanded that he get a Pokémon hat after Felix’s Eevee hat and Inklings Meowth hat, so I asked the kids what Pokémon I should knit for him and within three seconds, the answer was Snorlax!

Now the kids are demanding I should make one for me, but there are just so many choices… Gengar? Wooloo? Purrserker?

Till next week, stay safe!

Wool Count

Starting total – 897

Wool used – 6
Wool bought – 0
Wool given to me – 0
Wool gifted to others – 0
Wool handspun – 0

Total – 891

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Good riddance 2020, roll on 2021, may it be a pleasant and uninteresting year!

Amongst the pre new year clean up, the post Christmas toy playing, the snowball fights, sledging and snow trolls I have managed to squeak in one quick last finished knitted object!

A little mat with a pair of hops on it, using bits of cotton I had on hand. It has three shades of purple for the background as I knew I wouldn’t have had enough to do the whole thing with any one shade.

Here’s a close up of the hops.

But why this knit with this design? Because Engel. I got him a number of empty kegs and a dispenser for his Christmas to make bottling up the homebrew that bit faster and easier. So hops for beer and a mat because the dispenser drips a little after initial use before the pressure settles and it’s all good. Here is it in action:

And that’s really all to say this week. I’ve got a big project on the needles which I am still spinning wool for (spun two this week, need to do the next colour now), a multiple small item project that will be done here and there between projects for probably the whole year, and an idea brewing that I am debating whether or not I should knit it. There is also the very long to knit list that needs working through!

So keep safe till next week!

Wool Count

Starting total – 897

Wool used – 0
Wool bought – 0
Wool given to me – 0
Wool gifted to others – 0
Wool handspun – 0

Total – 897

The wool count has been recent as I do every year, usually I aim to get 100 balls out of stash, which I have done, but stash in was much higher. This year I aim to simply have more out than in, not including handspun, as that is just turning fleece stash into a usable form!

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Hello all, I hope you have had a fairly nice run up to the end of the year, regardless of what you cekebrate. Christmas here was surprisingly pleasant. I received some bad news at the very start of the morning, but other than that, it went smoothly.

Felix and Inkling are both at that age where they get swept up in Christmas and everything has that magic to it than only exists when you are small and young. And it was infectious. It was exactly what myself and Engel needed.

Because of all the changing rules and regulations, we kept it pretty simple, and have one set of friends over, and they too definitely needed the same dose of Christmas magic from the kids as we did!

It was one of their birthdays just a few days prior, so I knitted him up a little gift, which in my tired and exhausted brain from a last final push at work to complete a hell of a lot of work in a tiny time frame, may have drove my work colleagues mad…

Shark mittens!!! (Free pattern Puppet Mittens by Debbi Parker, there’s a bunch of animals so well worth a look) and because my brain was running on fumes, I did a tiny shark finger puppet.

Baby shark, doo doo de doo…baby shark doo doo de doo…and I have a mummy and daddy shark too so was giggling inanely to myself at my desk in work playing with them and breaking into song when people looked over at me…

I would like to point out that it wasn’t just me who was losing the plot completely, a lot of us where! They just didn’t see the brilliance of the shark mittens and song combined…

In other news, I had a chance to get my spinning wheel out and did a little bit of spinnjng. It had been too long since I managed to indulge myself with it! So one new ball of wool! But I also used a ball in my current project.

I’ll go into more detail in that at a later date, for now, I have festive chaos to return to!

Keep safe everyone!

Wool Count

Starting total – 704

Wool used – 156 (2 this week)
Wool bought – 28
Wool given to me – 318
Wool gifted to others – 8
Wool handspun – 17

Total – 898 

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