Looking back/Looking forward

March 25th, 2015 § 0 comments

It’s incredible how time flies. This time last year I was knitting a sea otter for a co-worker of mine’s first child, and then a couple other small projects for friends before I took off travelling. Which I meant to inform my lovely crafty blog-readers about, and kind of failed to do so. For 13 weeks, I lived out of a big rolling suitcase and moved about every 3-7 days. I went to London, Ireland, Portugal, Spain, and Morocco by myself. If you are curious about my adventures, please feel free to enjoy the ride by reading my travel blog at www.1womantraveling.blogspot.ca (I recommend going to the beginning and working your way forward, unless you are the type that likes to jump around – well, then be my guest 😉  ).

I had one of those “best laid plans of mice & men” moment when I decided to pack two knitting projects for my trip. Guess how much I managed to get done while I was away? About 35% of one of the projects. Derp.

Since I have been back, I’ve been working on finishing up some WIPs – including that spinning project I started over a year ago. I’m happy to say that I’m 67% complete on that “Firefly” spinning project for a friend, and here’s a photo of what some of it plied on a niddy-noddy looks like:

3-ply (Navajo) “Firefly” coloured yarn that sings a song of flames yearning to burn brightly.

I still have another 4 ounces of this fibre yet to spin, so I’m expecting/hoping that the yardage is enough for my lovely friend Rebecca to knit a sweater or cardigan out of it. I have to say, this yarn is damn-near perfect in terms of grist (a true worsted!), smoothness, and lack of knots due to no breaks during plying. It’s nice to feel like I’m really becoming a master spinner.

Since I have come home I have managed to finished 5 knitting projects. So let’s get caught up to the present on some of my projects, shall we?

First up, my Wannabe Vintage Mitts, which was one of the projects that I had initially taken on my trip with me that didn’t evolve all that much. To tell the truth, I was so enmeshed with where I was on my travels that I didn’t feel like pulling out the knitting. Especially when there was always something to do: a free walking tour, sangria hour, meals with hostel-mates, bike rides, beach time, or the availability of interesting foreign novels for free at most of my hostels. When I came home I realized that it was high time that I get a move-on and finish these fingerless mitts because I had cast them on in late July and was feeling like a bit of a failure languishing knitter.

I’m really pleased with the way these fingerless mitts turned out. I was even told by a fellow Raveler that my photos were clearer than the “model” ones used on the main pattern page on Ravelry. I’m tickled pink by that comment!

My Wannabe Vintage fingerless mitts. I must say, they really are stunning! I love the delicate cable detail.

Project Notes:
Pattern name: 
Wannabe Vintage Mitts by Jennifer Buettgen (free Ravelry download)
Yarn used: Stricken Smitten Sinful Socks in “Scheherazade’s sky” colourway
Yardage out: 150 yards out with points for stash-down!
Needles: 3 mm dpns
Notes: I decided that the cuffs in this pattern are too short. I did 3 repeats of Cuff A, and knit 2 repeats of Cuff B. I unfortunately didn’t extend the thumb cuff, but I would extend it if I knitted these mitts again.

Next up, something really cool and a bit nerdy if you are into Marvel comics etc. Last year, a B-rated movie called Guardians of the Galaxy came out. The movie was just so-so, but one of its characters (“Groot” played by Vin Diesel) was really fun and audiences were more into this character than any other. Spoiler alert: Groot is a baby at the end of the movie (I won’t say why or how). The dancing baby Groot has inspired no less than 21 knitting and crochet patterns on Ravelry! I mentioned that I had seen Groot patterns to my boyfriend (yes, we are back together) and he said that he wanted one. This was just 5 days before Christmas! So I had to get my butt in gear and get knitting.

The actual knitting of this item wasn’t all that bad. The devil was in the details though…embroidery, safety eyes, moss, planter’s foam, I even spray-painted a pot white to “plant” Groot in! I’m super happy with how my Groot turned out though. His arms are bendy, so he can “dance” (with help from a human of course). My bf has this guy on his desk at work to help cheer him up when he needs it on busy days.

Baby Groot! So cute!

Project Notes:
Pattern name: 
Baby Groot by Meghan Munro (paid pattern – download)
Yarn used: Elann Peruvian Highland Wool in “Sable” and Noro Takeuma in Olives for the embroidery/trimmings
Yardage out: 40 yards out with points for stash-down!
Needles: 2.75 mm and 4.5mm dpns
Notes: The directions for the bark crown are a bit strange so I kind of winged it. I also had a devil of a time trying to slide pipe-cleaners through the i-cord arms. I recommend bending the sharp end, and making a looser gauge i-cord to make pipe-cleaner insertion easier. Instead of feeding the excess yarn tail through the i-cord, I whip-stitched it down the arm. This also allowed more room for the pipe-cleaner. I inserted two toothpicks into Groot’s body to help keep him sturdy and upright as his head is a bit heavy for his body. I placed a rock in the bottom of the pot to add more stability. I glued the rim of a half-circle of potting foam flat-side-up. Then I glued moss and baby Groot with a glue-gun.

I’ll post another blog soon about some more completed projects. Thanks for staying tuned in!

 

 

 

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