The vintage snood I cast on on Saturday turned out to be a very quick knit.
It’s basically a rectangle of garter stitch with the stitches of every fourth row elongated; the pattern said to ‘pull the stitches out to about an inch in length’ but in the interests of consistency I worked *k1, yo x3* to last stitch, k1 and then dropped the yarnovers on the next row. To get the curved shape you pick up and knit one stitch for every two rows up the side and then bind off (I actually picked up and purled the second lot so the two sides matched). It took 44g of Colinette Giotto, knitted on 4mm needles. I’m not usually a fan of ribbon yarns but I used my ChiaoGoos which are lovely and smooth and it knitted up like a dream.
I think it looks rather fabulous, and almost wish I had long enough hair to wear one myself (though I know that I am really much, much happier when my hair is short). S, on the other hand, has very long hair which is perfect for snoods, so I hope she likes wearing this one.
For more Making Monday posts, check out Natalie’s post.
I used to do a lot of cooking, but somehow over the last few years I’ve lost interest and am more than happy to leave most of it to T (who is a very good cook). I suspect it’s at least partly because knitting has taken over as my creative hobby of choice, although I am also less interested in food generally than I was and more inclined to view it simply as fuel than as something which should always be a source of pleasure; whatever the reason, I don’t cook very often. But we had two punnets of tomatoes which had come in our Riverford box and which I was obviously not going to eat raw, it not being at all the weather for salads, so I thought I’d make them into soup.
Soup is about the only thing I still make in my old creative throw-everything-together-and-see-what-comes-out way, because while I’m scared of messing up other things if I don’t follow a recipe it’s really difficult to mess up soup. In this case I started off frying a chopped onion in some olive oil, then added the tomatoes (I think there were about five normal-sized ones and a dozen cherry tomatoes, chopped up small) and threw in half a can of chopped tomatoes that was lurking in the fridge, and let it all cook down for a bit. I wondered about seasoning it with pesto, then thought that maybe harissa would be better, and then on discovering that the harissa had gone manky after being left opened in the fridge for too long ended up adding a pinch of chilli flakes and a pinch of oregano instead. Once the tomatoes had started to break down I added a can of chickpeas and a litre of Marigold vegetable bouillon, let it simmer for about twenty minutes and then added some macaroni and let it cook until that was soft.
Once it had cooled, I boxed it up in individual portions and froze them. Now I have four no-effort packed lunches ready and waiting!
I haven’t had much of a chance to use my craft room for actual crafting yet, but I did make a start on my Clothkits skirt yesterday, and incidentally discovered that my blocking mats double up very nicely as cutting mats.
I’ve cut all the pieces out and sewed the lining to the facings (learning in the process that when sewing a thin fabric to a thicker one it would be better to have the thin fabric on top to prevent it slipping away from under the thicker one; there’s not really much of a seam allowance on parts of it), but that was all I had time for, and as I’m in Glasgow this weekend the rest will have to wait.
(I was a bit annoyed to discover that the space on the sheet of corduroy has been filled up with pieces for a floppy hat. I don’t want a floppy corduroy hat, but some nice cord remnants wouldn’t have gone amiss. Anyone want the hat pieces? Shout in comments if you do.)
I’m definitely on the lookout for a nice simple dress pattern to try next. Any recommendations? I want something I can make in a wool or wool-mix fabric for winter work wear, possibly the same kind of shape as the vintage Crimplene dress I was wearing today:
Shawl – Damson
Dress – vintage (from posh Oxfam in Bath)
T-shirt and tights – M&S
Shoes – Clarks
In other exciting news, my dressmaker’s dummy has arrived today! I still have to figure out adjusting her to match my measurements, but she’s assembled and standing in my craft room, and I have decided that her name is Mildred – no particular reason, she just looks like a Mildred to me.
(If you want to read more Making Monday posts, see Natalie’s post.)
I decided at the end of last week that I really deserved a present to celebrate getting through the first four weeks of my new job, and as as result Saturday’s post bought a parcel containing an exciting-looking bundle:
This is going to be a Clothkits Big Birdie Skirt with a Liberty print lining. I haven’t done any sewing for ages, and had been considering a winter skirt but not completely sure how to go about choosing the right fabric or picking something that would work as a lining (I think winter skirts need linings, as otherwise they always end up sticking to my tights).
I haven’t actually started cutting out the pieces yet, because I have some even more exciting sewing-related plans to carry out first. One of the difficulties I’ve found, since buying my sewing machine, is that as well as making time to sew I also need to make space; the only place I could set the machine up is on the kitchen table, so I needed to pick a time when T wasn’t going to want to sit there and couldn’t leave everything out between sewing sessions. However, T has been spring-cleaning and has finally disposed of the junk which had been accumulating in the conservatory for several years. Which leaves a surprising amount of space, and it struck us both that if we had something comfortable to sit on (at the moment it just houses bookcases and the dining table and chairs) it would be a lovely place to sit on sunny days, and that the futon which is currently in the front bedroom (the one which also houses all my clothes and the yarn stash) would fit down there nicely, and it’s not as though we ever actually have visitors who need to sleep on it.
Of course, moving the futon downstairs will leave quite a bit of space in the front bedroom. Easily enough for one of these, which will be perfect to put the sewing machine on. And then I’ll basically have a proper craft room, which is very exciting; I can move all my craft books up there, and the fabric and yarn which is still stashed downstairs, and have it all in one place instead. We’ve ordered the desk and it should be delivered tomorrow, so I’ll be spending next weekend building it and sorting stuff out, and then I’ll be ready to start my skirt in my own dedicated workroom where I don’t have to put everything away at the end of each sewing session!
(If you want to read more Making Monday posts, check out Natalie’s post!)
It’s completely bonkers that when we’ve just passed the autumnal equinox and it doesn’t get light until too late for me to take my outfit photos outdoors, it should also be warm enough that I opted for short sleeves and sheer tights (which turned into ‘no tights’ later on because I can’t stand the feel of sheer tights and they were making me far too uncomfortable).
Apologies for the picture quality:
Necklace – made by Helen
Top – East
Vest – Primark
Skirt – Boden
Shoes – Clarks
I think I may spend the rest of this week’s heatwave sweltering in tights, as I really struggled in these shoes; the only way I could walk without my toe hurting was to walk on the side of my foot, and that hurt my ankle, so I think I’ll go back to my nice sensible lace-ups tomorrow.
Meanwhile, in making news, I appear to have had a fit of startitis. In the last week I have cast on:
A Litchfield hat.
A pair of (Can)tab socks.
A Forest Canopy Shawl.
And I’ve bought the pattern for Quintet and am going to start swatching soon.
(If you want to read more Making Monday posts, check out Natalie’s blog.)
The fifth of my A to Z of shawls is Elektra from Romi‘s 7 Small Shawls: The Pleiades. I used Yarn Yard Crannog in a wonderful teal/turquoise shade; I cast on while I was on holiday a few weeks ago and bound off yesterday. I haven’t got round to blocking it yet, but I did take some pictures of the unblocked shawl.
I really like the lace pattern, and I think it’s going to be beautiful when it’s blocked.
I’m not sure whether to move on to the next shawl or knit something different for a change. I’d quite like to make myself a garment, though I’m worried (probably needlessly*) about knitting something that looks dreadful on me and also (with more justification) about whether anything I make will really get that much wear; my handknitted cardigans are definitely too casual for a job where I’m tending to find that wearing jackets is the best way to make my existing wardrobe look appropriately smart. I can imagine a fantastic professional wardrobe where handknitted cardigans and jumpers are paired with neat pencil skirts and trousers, but my full skirts are definitely better with jackets, and there are only so many casual clothes I need. On the other hand, I think shawls are just fine and certainly intend to keep wearing them for work. So maybe I should stick to making shawls…
Shawl – Milkweed
Top – M&S
Skirt – charity shop
Tights – M&S
Shoes – Clarks
(You can read more Making Monday posts here.)
*I am currently wearing my ‘disastrous’ Featherweight Cardigan with jeans and the top I wore for work; as long as I let go of my vision of it as a smart fitted cardi I could wear for work I rather like it; it’s a gorgeous colour, and lovely and soft and drapey.
I don’t seem to have anything to post about for Making Monday this week. I did make a banana cake, because we had bananas that were too squidgy to eat any other way, and I have been knitting away on socks for my husband and my Elektra shawl, as well as swatching for Litchfield (the yarn I was going to use was too bulky, so I have ordered some Cascade 220 after swatching with some leftovers I had lying around and coming up pretty close), but really, the main thing I’ve been making is an effort to balance the demands of my new job with my need to look after myself and get enough sleep and exercise and take time to relax. The trouble is, that doesn’t really result in anything I can take photos of for the blog. Except possibly me, sane and healthy* and refreshed and ready for my second week in the job:
Necklace – M&S
Cardigan – clothes swap
T-shirt – M&S
Skirt – Dorothy Perkins
Tights – M&S
Shoes – Jones Bootmaker
I’m not sure this skirt was quite the right choice with the tail-end of Hurricane Katia sweeping across the UK, though – I kept having to hold it down as I walked along!
If you want to read more Making Monday posts (probably from people who have actually made stuff!) check out the post here.
*well, except that I think I may have broken my toe when I accidentally trapped it under the leg of the chair I was sitting in last week