30 December 2011

Mosaic Yoke jacket

This project has been so frustrating.

First of all, since usually even the smallest sizes are too big for me, I knitted it in the smallest size on a slightly smaller needle. It came out way too small, and I had to rip it all back to nothing.

The silver lining was that I was able to correct 95% of the mistakes I had made the first time around: I had done the yoke incorrectly, it was too short, I didn't like the colours I'd chosen for the yoke, I messed up the collar.

So it's looking much better - the length is good now, I'm happy with my colour choices (though they're far less than the pattern calls for), the fit is right:

There are so many nice details:

But I still made a mistake and will have to rip it back. At least, this time I don't have to undo the whole thing, just the border. I didn't read the pattern carefully enough, so I missed that picking up stitches for the border starts at the yoke, not at the top of the body. So, as you can see here, the front buckles. Also, I think I may have to make the border bigger, as it is still not quite wide enough across the front. I'm still going to start the border at the top of the body, just with more stitches this time. I'm also not sure I like the green bit under the collar.

I'm hoping to finish it in time for an upcoming trip to NYC... We'll see. I'm psyching myself up to undo the hem, haven't been able to face it yet...

In the meantime, between knitting the first draft of this piece and the second, I finished R's beau in time for Christmas, which he likes a lot (the jumper, not the holiday). He's worn it almost every day.

I hope everyone had a great Christmas!

26 November 2011

A Good Day

Today, when the mail came, I had a package from Siga - some beautiful yarn, a card with her beautiful handwriting, and some chocolates. I couldn't take a picture of the yummy mini Ritter Sports, because... well you can probably figure out that they disappeared long before I got the camera out!

Thank you, Siga!

So, that was an absolutely lovely way to start the day. 

Then we went to Islington to visit my friend Philip's new place - the Islington Barn - where he has pop-up dinners, a fresh veg & fruit shop, which is very festive right now. 

If you live in London, I totally recommend checking it out - the fruit & veg are amazing and super cheap too. I'm making some cauliflower soup for dinner with beautiful cauliflower that I bought from him today. That's my olio verde olive oil in the background, from my friend Gabi in Sicily. How did I get so lucky in terms of my friends???

All in all, it's been a really nice autumn Saturday here in London.

I've also been making trial runs of Christmas cookies, which isn't as fun as making them with my sister. 

Finally, here's what I've been knitting: it's Beau in black for Rog:

13 September 2011


Finished it just in time to wear out to the South Bank tonight!

14 August 2011

Plum Jam

Our plum tree has had so many fruit this summer, and as R is in NYC for work for a few weeks, there is no way I could eat them all. And I've given pounds of them away to friends already. So I made jam.

 4.5 cups pitted plums
3 cups sugar
juice of 1/4 lemon

I'm still working on my mosaic yoke jacket, but I made it too small - usually the smallest size is still too big for me, but not this time. So I had to undo everything but the sleeves. I'll come back to it...

In the meantime, this is my new project...

01 July 2011

Just cos I haven't been blogging...

doesn't mean I haven't been knitting... (rav link and another link)

23 October 2010

The Slippery Slope

Please promise me you will never use the slippery slope argument. It's just lazy and its only result can be maintaining the status quo. We don't live in the best of all possible worlds. Therefore, any issue of any importance will be a slippery slope. This doesn't mean people shouldn't take a stand.

Say you're arguing that increasing surveillance, especially on people who have no criminal records, is a slippery slope: before you know it, all our rights are gone. Now just imagine, there is someone making the exact opposite argument. Let terrorists or criminals or whomever have the knowledge that they're not being watched, and it's a slippery slope: before you know it, "they" will be ruling the streets (the pro-surveillance argument reminds me of that old French adage - "you should beat your wife everyday; if you don't know what she's done wrong, she does" - horrible, isn't it).

Between the both of you and your slippery slope arguments, nothing can be done to change the status quo.

Like I said, any issue of import is inherently situated upon a slippery slope. The slippery slope argument just looks at the extreme at either end of the issue, rather than at all that complex grey stuff in the middle. So instead of taking issues to their "logical" extreme, people need to take a stand: come up with a solution, try and break the problem up into smaller bits so they can be addressed concretely. I don't care how you do it. But until we live in a better world, there's no point in looking at theoretical extremes. They're glib and useless.

It's ironic that the slippery slope argument is actually a slippery slope itself: a slippery slope to poor reasoning and intellectual laziness.

I'm now stepping off my soapbox. Back to knitting next post.

04 October 2010

FO - Beau

I finally finished Beau

R said something like, "well, now you can use these measurements for the next jumper you make me." I think that means success.  

After re-knitting with the number of stitches called for by the pattern, I knit in the round, up to the base of the sleeve. Then I knit up the sleeves, and attached them so I could keep knitting in the round, because I am terrible at sewing sleeves in and it would have looked messy and horrible. I used a raglan decrease where the pattern asked to bind off stitches; therefore I decrease more on the sleeve side than the body. I used kitchener stitch to join the front and back at the shoulder.

I had made the body too short, so I had to undo it from the bottom, and while I was there, I did a few short rows on the back. Now it seems to be just right!

Now I think I'm going to make a clapotis for myself - I've made a few, but always for other people.