Wednesday, 9 March 2011

In the middle of things

The longer days and brighter sunshine of spring don't translate themselves into an urge to spring clean - they just fill me with enormous energy for making things.  I don't normally like to have multiple projects on the go, because I can end up feeling overwhelmed, but at the moment that doesn't seeem to be a problem.

One legwarmer for O is finished, and the second one is coming along nicely.

Livvy's legwarmer

Ice-cream coloured legwarmer

These are a fast knit, and I like the colours she has chosen - they remind me of ice cream for some reason.  The combo with the red tights is an adventurous, but typical choice for O, who has no concept of colours clashing or matching - anything goes.  I rather admire that.

My colour preferences are more muted at the moment though.  Yesterday I finished the first of these armwarmers in some delicious Malabrigo yarn which I bought on a trip to Loop at the weekend.

First armwarmer finished

The pattern is the wonderful Toast, found here on Ravelry, with a few small changes of my own.  The second armwarmer is also on the needles, and I am racing to get it finished before this week's walk, which is pencilled in for Friday.  I will end up with almost a whole skein of the yellow left over, and think I may make another calorimetry headband from it.

The third bit of knitting on the go right now (I know - three! very silly) is this facecloth in Debbie Bliss Eco Baby cotton.

Moss stitch washcloth

I love the cotton (in yet another pastel spring shade), I love the pattern, which is from a library copy of Debbie Bliss's new book The Knitter's Year, and I love the idea of washing my face with a knitted washcloth rather than a tired old flannel.  However, knitting moss stitch is so incredibly slow.  It will be weeks before it is finished.  This trade off means that it will be a while before I replace all the worn-out flannels in my drawer with lovely cotton washcloths - I find moss stitch so beautiful but incredibly frustrating.

There's sewing happening as well as knitting!  Maybe I'm drinking too much coffee at the moment.

Last night I finished these pyjamas for C.

Cam's new pyjamas

No photos, Mum!

The top is a long sleeved t-shirt from Uniqlo.  Uniqlo don't seem to sell children's clothes here in the UK, but the men's XS size fits 11 year-old C very well.  The bottoms I made myself from a georgously soft checked flannel which I bought at Fabrics Galore last year for a bargain £4 a metre.  I used my favourite Simplicity 3669 pattern, which I've been sewing from for years - they are so simple I can make a pair in about an hour from start to finish.  Even better, the children love to wear them because they fit so nicely and are very comfy.

And then yesterday I received two new Lisette sewing patterns all the way from New York, which had escaped the sting of extra customs charges (very satisfying).  In the same delivery was the new Oliver + S book too.  So today I am cutting out fabric for a top for me, and planning some nephew and niece birthday presents for later in the year as well.  This is a photo of my ironing board, submerged under patterns and fabric, this morning.

I have plans

The Oliver + S book is a thing of great beauty.  As I suspected, most of the projects are for children younger than mine (really for babies and pre-schoolers, with a few projects also good for children in the first year or two of school), but that's fine by me as I have plenty of small relatives to sew for.  I love the book for having so many good projects for little boys, who often get a raw deal when it comes to handmade love.

The Lisette patterns are lovely - and I think they are good value, even when ordered from America, because each packet has four patterns inside.  I bought these two patterns for the tunic tops, but now I have the patterns I also think I might make this skirt too.  I really like the skirt length and the button tabs at the front.

I am now off to make myself another pot of coffee.  There is spring making to be done - so much more fun than spring cleaning!


  1. Oooh so many super things to comment on!

    I adore your armwarmers. You know how I love gray, and it looks so fab next to the yellow. Now if only I'd known where you were going, I could have given you my Malabrigo shopping list!

    And those patterns are fabulous--exactly the simple chic styles I've been looking for (and only finding in Japanese books). How did I not know about these? Now if I order patterns for me, will you help me with the sewing up?!

    K x

  2. I used that exact fabric to make PJs for my husband (I paid more for it than that though...oh dear). I forgot that flannel needs a larger seam allowance than cotton and I feel doubtful that they will survive the washing machine, so a disaster all round for me. Yours look lovely!

  3. Wow, you are a hive of activity! I thought I was impressive just for taking the rug to the dry cleaners!


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