Sunday, December 20, 2009

Winter Woollies

Goodness it's getting cold here in Osaka. It was trying to snow today, but didn't quite manage it. We'll be hitting the snow this week anyway, as we are going snowboarding for Christmas. I've stocked up on thermals, but I realised I was going to need a heavy duty draught-stopper or two, so out came the needles and the stash.

I hate feeling chilly breezes around my neck, so I got stuck into a snug little neck warmer. The pattern is the Rios Locos Neck Snuggler by Amy Klimt, available for free on Ravelry. After I started knitting, I got a bit woried that the lacey holes might make it less than wind-tight, so I added a polar fleece lining. It is SO. SNUGGLEE.

It's made from the red yarn left over from the flowers in the last post. It's a lovely 80% wool 20% silk blend. I'm using the left over purples to make leg warmers based on the Horcux Socks by Susan Lawrence (free Ravelry download again - I <3 Ravelry). Basically, I'm just gonna knit the fun, patterned bit of the sock without farting around with the heel.

Speaking of farting around with the heel, here's where the chevron socks are at:

I usually get pretty excited at this stage, 'cos it's like the home stretch. And then I realise I've gotta do the same thing all over again to get the second sock. Durrrr.

And finally, since it's that time of year when we're getting our balls out, here's a cool Christmas dec I made from a pattern by Alexis Winslow.

It's intended to go over a Christmas bauble, but I used a capsule toy capsule instead and it worked out great. I stopped after one, because I realised they'd be a pain to pack and take back to Australia, and I would also be very sorry to leave them behind. However, I think it's an awesome idea, with a lot of potential for customisation and recycling and, best of all, stash-busting. I will definitely make a whole lot of them next year. For now, I exhort you to try it. It takes less than half an hour. Make one for your mum, she'll be stoked.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Loligoth Moustache

Last weekend, I went to a theme party. There were about half a dozen themes to choose from - so there was no excuse for not being dressed appropriately. I could have gone for Tie-dye, Flourescent Colours, or Bad Christmas Jumpers, but in the end the theme I went with was Moustaches.

I began with the intention of knitting a moustache, but the yarn I used was to chunky, and it didn't turn out well. So, the first moustache turned into a tawashi, and I cleaned the bath with it. Bath-stache!

Luckily, I have a whole lot of fake fur hanging around, left over from helping a mate with their Halloween costume. So, with the addition of some ribbon bows, some silver charms and some necklace chain, I moved on to Plan B...

I give you the Loligoth Moustache!

In the photo, it's hard to see all the bits of shiny stuff in there, because of the shagginess. However, it was generally agreed to be the Best. Moustache. EVAR. by my fellow party-goers.

In other news, I finished the sashiko squares I was working on.

I'm not sure what to use them for yet.

I've also been making knitted flower brooches for Christmas/Thankyou presents for my Japanese teachers. (They don't know each other, so I made two the same. Lay-zee!)

The pattern is from a book my aunt in the UK sent me, called 'Beautiful Knits for Heads, Hands and Toes', by Alison Dupernex. Most of the patterns are fairly basic, but there's some interesting patterns in there, too. I'm looking forward to trying the sideways knitted gloves, and the cable socks. Though, I do think the photography and styling lets the book down a bit. There are a few odd presentation choices, and some iffy focus - petty, I know, but it bugs me.

Anyway, while we're talking about bad knitting photography, here's some more, featuring my WIP red and orange Jaywalker Socks. I decided to go with a nice, straight-forward chevron sock, because I feel like I've got the hang of basic socksand wanted to mix things up a bit. But there's not much sock yet, so the chevron isn't obvious. Better photo when it's clearer... The pattern is by Grumperina, and is available for free from her blog, or on Ravelry.