Saturday, November 21, 2009

Blocking day

Tank you all for the very kind comments on my previous blog post! I'm actually very happy with the lettuce coat, and it's really nice to know that it's not just me :) I think I look a bit chubby in the photo, but I can't really be bothered! It was the best one we could manage, so it had to do. The coat looks good, though.

Today has been a tough day for me, I've been thinking a lot about Gizmo and generally been missing him a lot. He was such a sweet and social cat, and I loved him very much. He was just under three years old when he died last year, and it seems very unfair that he should be taken from us at such a young age. I'm very grateful that we still have Hobbe, who is the sweetest, cuddliest cat you can imagine. I wish we could get him a little kitty friend, but unfortunately Hobbe is an asymptomatic carrier of the FIP virus that killed Gizmo, so we don't dare take home another cat and risk having to go through all this again. So we have decided that we will test Hobbe every year when he gets his vaccinations for cat plague, in october, and as long as he stays positive we won't get another cat. This is one of my favourite photos of Gizmo:

Now onto some funnier stuff! I actually think that my three weeks of sick-leave from work will help, as I kind of think I'm starting to feel marginally better. This might sound weird considering the last paragraph, but that is just grief. That won't go away even when the anti-depressants start to kick in, I'll always miss Gizmo, but generally I'm feeling a lot more relaxed and content. I'm actually thinking that going back to work at the beginning of December won't be all that bad. And that is great, as work has been really tough lately, but I guess I just needed some time off.

And today I've finally gotten around to blocking the striped Alpaca scarf I finished a while ago (Hobbe helped me). I sat down this morning before breakfast and blocked the lettuce coat, and I thought: "Why not pin down the scarf while I'm at it?" So now my living room floor is filled with my blocking foam pieces. I think the coat will look a lot better once blocked, and I've decided to sew on some clasps so I can button the whole thing. I got some with a sewing kit I bought a while ago, and I think they'll work like a charm.

I just have to show you: I ran out of pins just as I was finishing pinning the scarf! So, you take what you have at hand (Anna: Man tager vad man haver...), and I finished up using five safety pins! It looks kind of funny, but they work. I think the scarf will look a lot better once finished blocking, and hopefully it won't curl up so much. It is soft as heaven, and very cozy to wear now that the winter cold is coming. Well, the winter cold hasn't actually arrived yet, we still have rainy autumn, but after Christmas the cold usually arrive for a few months to really rub it in that it is a long way to ge until Spring... I'm planning on getting a lot of use out of both the lettuce coat and the scarf!

Oh, and yesterday night I actually finished the first of the cabled gloves I've made! They are a little tight, but I will fix that with some blocking. I'm waiting to do the blocking until I've finished both of them though, as I'm sure they would turn out very different if I blocked them at separate times. I'm very pleased with the first glove at least, it looks really elegant and advanced! There was a lot of cabelling going on, but otherwise they were not difficult. I love the charts for the cables, they were so easy to read and relly logical. If you want the pattern, it is Kingdom Gloves from And to think I was terrified to try knitting from english patterns just this summer! Knitting terms are just so much more logical in english than they are in swedish: If you already know how to knit basic stuff, then you kind of understand what a yarn over or a ssk means. I think I might actually start to use the english versions of the Drops patterns as well (which I've been using a lot up until now).

Oh, and I forgot to tell you about the two knitting books that came home with me together with the Stephen King novel! The first one is Socks from the Toe Up, by Wendy D. Johnson. I've wanted to learn this technique for a while, and even though I could have found instruction videos online, I thought that this book had so many beaufiul patterns in it that it was worth it.

The second is Sock Innovation, by Cookie A. I've seen a lot of her patterns on Ravelry, and I think I love each one, so this book was a given for me. I've got a lot of sock yarns in my stash, so I'm thinking I will have at least ten pairs of socks from these two books before I have to fill up on sock yarn again. When I do, though, I think I'll splurge and actually order some yarns from The Knit Witch. I love her yarns, and as I got my yarn bowl from her a while ago, I figure I should have some yarn from her to put in it, too. But it is so darn expensive to get shipping to Europe, so it will have to wait until next year some time. Or when I become a millionaire :)

I think I want to finish one more project before I start a new one, so either the gloves or the candle flame shawl will have to get done. I'm not sure what I want to start first though! I definitely will start some socks, probably from Sock Innovation. I also want to make the Cat Mittens, and I bought some KnitPicks Palette yarn in green and cream colours to make these. I also want to use the KnitPicks Main Line yarn that I got from Ulrika, now that I finally got the white contrasting yarn from Pixie Knitter. I've planned to make a set of gloves, hat and knee-high stockings of this yarn. There is also a cardigan to go with the pattern set, but I'm not loving the model so I might improvise a sweater with the same snowflake pattern on it. I have enough Main Line yarn that I can swim in it (10 green skeins and 18 ivory skeins)! I also want to start the St James top I told you about last time, and I have some pink Drops Alpaca yarn that is screaming at me to become a pair of gloves for me. And I want to make some kind of fingerless gloves that I can wear while I'm knitting, as I always seem to feel cold about my hands! Oh, and I have a ton of shawls I want to make, including the Aeolian (I think I've decided that this is what the Chili Gredelin Madame yarn will turn into). What to do, what to do?! I certainly have no lack of patterns that I want to make!

Oh, and of course as soon as I had mentioned that I might put up a list of favourite books I had to do it. It's in the right column if you want to know what I read!

Now I think I'll go heat up some glühwine (you know, black-currant wine with Christmas spices in it, like Ginger, Cinnamon, Cardamom and Clove, we have it all the time in the winter here in Sweden, it's celled Glögg) and eat some gingerbread cookie dough! I'll leave you with a gorgeous photo of Hobbe!

/ Jenny


Nalamienea said...

You even sound better in your posts! I'm so very glad to hear you like this. :) That wine sound AMAZING, btw! Anyway I can pay you for a bottle of that in my next shipment? hehehe. I hope you have a great next couple of weeks and that you enjoy your time off. I've got a few more weeks of stressful school before my time off, though! :)

Kanntara said...

Very nice! I was wondering where you got those blocking mats. When I'm back that way again, I'll probably bug my boyfriend to take me to find them.

Kate said...

HI there! I'm so sorry to hear that you had a bad day! Kitties really do touch the soul in a special way, I don't really know how to say it. I'm sure you understand, though. ;)

Your glove is absolutly gorgeous- I would vote on finishing the other glove. If I were you I would be so excited to show off to everyone on the street how amazing they are!! I would hold my hand under anyones nose that came within fifty feet of me!

Take care! I really hope you feel better!

Anna said...

It is so nice to read about your life and adventures! I so long to hang out with you again and this blog post both made me feel more content AND made me want to call you right now (I'm not gonna though, it is too early for that I think ;))!
I've started new projects but haven't finished any old ones (Bad Anna). I just can't seem to stop myself! :)
Hope to see you soon!