Casting on: Yippee Kai-mei!

Hello Everyone!

I have a new project to share with you today! On friday I showed you the first finished sock of my Thorin oakenshield sock. They’re pretty fun and the result is great, but the little bobbles are quite fiddley. I needed a quick break and so cast on a different sock! Once I finish the first sock of the new pair, I’ll cast on the second Thorin sock. I thought this was smart, but I’m now regretting it a little. I’ll have two socks finished but I can’t wear them straight after finishing. I also had to improvise a lot on the Thorin socks and although i think i’ll be able to replicate the first, if i wait to long I’m now suspecting I won’t. Add to that that i’ve ended up changing some of the numbers on my new sock and then forgetting to write those down… oops!  I think i have them all figured out now but we’ll only see for sure when i get to that second sock. Sigh, sock drama! They’re lucky they’re pretty and cozy!

The new sock is Kai-mei by Cookie A. I saw that someone else had named theirs Yippee Kai-mei and that name stuck. It just sounds so much more fun!

I’m using the same yarn I used for my Dawlish last year and that I have used for another pair since (but i don’t think I ever shared them here). It’s lovely and soft and is holding up well even if the socks get a little fuzzy. The colours are just so amazing!

The leg of the sock is all ribbing. Pretty and soothing after the complicated pattern of the Thorin’s. But it turns out I got sick of it pretty soon anyway. Happens sometimes. I’m just not that excited about knitting these socks. As a matter of a fact, or 2 days now I haven’t even touched my knitting! I spent my free time playing Pokemon on my laptop instead. I was too tired to have to focus on the pattern and my knitting. It is new for me though. Ever since starting to knit a year ago I don’t think i’ve ever not knit a little everyday. Even just a few stitches.

This is about where I am now. The leg looks super long! I’ve never worn socks this long, I usually fold the tops over because i get pressure marks really easily and they hurt (and no my socks aren’t tight). I think because these are hand knit and fit fine they will be okay. And i just didn’t think to shorten the leg really…

 

Love,  Renée

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NOTD: Shopping day at Bluemingdales

Hello Everyone,

I recently sorted out my nail polish stash and decided to get rid of all the colours that seemed oh so pretty in the store, but i now realized did absolutely nothing for me. SOme I just didn’t like using, some clashed horribly with my skin (I’m really pale with a yellowish undertone, certain colours just don’t work). I rehoused some polishes and after a while donated what was left. W have several good will stores in the neighborhood and having visited them a few times, I know some of the people here have little to spend. My stuff was in a very good state so hopefully I’ll be able to make some people happy when they spot some beauty supplies there (they don’t usually have any).

Whilst sorting through my stash and reorganizing them, I realized that I have a fair few polishes that have never been used. Oops! So I’m trying to pick those for now. Today I’m wearing one of those polishes. Catrice – 13 Shopping day at Bluemingdales.

the polish is a gorgeous bright blue with a purple undertone. Above you see the polish in bright daylight. 

This is a picture from last night. There was no daylight so it was taken in artificial light. As you can see the colour is more purplish here and not as bright blue.

This (slightly blurry) close-up demonstrates what I mean even better. And it shows something i didn’t notice until after applying topcoat (it’ more apparent in pictures). On my pinky and ring finger you can see a patch with a thinner coat of polish. I’m wearing 2 coats here and t is sufficient, but you ave to be careful when applying the polish. If you go over a spot too often you end up dragging the previous layer of polish off and you end up with thinner patches. They’re not very noticeable on my nails, but they’re more obvious in the pictures.

Blue is my favorite colour, so I’m not sure why I waited so long to try out this polish. It’s so nice!

I definitely recommend this polish! As do all the newer catrice polishes, this polish has a wide rounded brush that makes for very easy application. it’s easy to get nice round edges near your cuticles with this brush. The polish has a nice shine on it’s one, but really comes to life when you pair it with a high shine topcoat.

What is your favorite colour?

Love, Renée

FO Friday: Jonium and Thorin!

Hello Everyone!

I have a major FO to share with you today! It’s officially my favorite project to date and the FO has, in the time between blocking and being posted here, been used quite a bit.

My Jonium!

I never quite understood shawls, until I bit the bullet and made one. I didn’t decide to make one because I suddenly understood, oh no. I had seen someone else’s shawl and realized i had the same yarn. And i felt like making it. It was Stephen West’s Boneyard Shawl (for which I am finally going to take some pictures tomorrow, as it’s been finished for ages, but I was using it so much I never seem to get round to it). It’s a basic top down triangle shawl. A lot of stockinette stitch with the occasional bit of garter to keep it interesting. the perfect beginners shawl! As a matter of a fact, I’m urging my mom to make one too, as she keeps grabbing mine when she sees it. I made it out of an Aran weight tweed yarn and it’s perfect for snuggling under on the couch. I ended up using that one a lot. I get cold often in my dorm room as the heating there is pretty shoddy and I can just fling this around my shoulders and the soft shawl keeps me warm. But a adam weight blanket shawl is a lot different form a proper fancy shawl with lace and cables. I had this vision of myself in the spring, which, your mouth is probably falling open in shock, is my least favorite season. I get allergies (yuck!) and i hate that transition between winter and summer clothes. I frequently dress to warm and end up sweaty and hot and very very annoyed. In these days of torture a shawl could be the ultimate solution! I could wear my cute summer clothes and stuff a shawl in my bag. If i get cold, voila! I have my fancy shawl that will keep me toasty (but not too toasty). And so I went looking for the perfect pattern. I found it pretty quickly!

Stats:

Pattern: Jonium by Tiziana Sammuri. Wow. I knew instantly this had to be my first fancy shawl. The samples were nice and large and the pattern looked like a fun and challenging knit.

Yarn: Knit Picks Palette in Chicory. It’s an impossible to photograph, but totally gorgeous blueish purple. In some light it can look almost cobalt!

Time: Long. I worked on this for almost 6 weeks by doing a little bit every evening. Near the end of the shawl the rows had 500 + stitches and each row took me over an hour! This is a pattern where focus is critical. It’s not a mindless tv knit. I think this slowed me down quite a bit.

Needles: I used 4.5 mm needles with a 100 cm cable (the pattern recommends 3.5, but I knit really tight!). Near the end of my project it was pretty full. I think with 80 cm you would really have to squish the stitches on there!

Experience: AMAZING! Tiziana was a great great help. I really cannot thank her enough. The pattern was a little bit above my skill level so I got confused a few times. She was always quick to respond and provided me with detailed explanations for the parts that had me puzzled. The pattern was amazingly fun to knit. You start with cables and slowly some lace creeps in and eventually you end up with a lot of lace. Fun! It keeps such a huge project interesting. I’ve gotten so many great responses to the finished piece already! I love wearing it, it makes me feel very cool (shawl are nonexistent where I live apparently). I thought it would’t be as warm due to the holes caused by the lace, but it’s perfectly warm!

I had a fair bit of panic ever since the shawl was halfway done until it was off the needles. I had this fear that it was turning out a lot smaller than all the samples. Hahaha! I was so surprised after blocking. It was suddenly at least double the size it was before.

Hihi. I like this photo, but it keeps making me laugh. I was having  horrid time trying to pose naturally because my mom and I were joking around the entire time. Suddenly she was pointing loudly somewhere in the sky so I looked. And then burst out laughing again. She took the picture just a few seconds before so I look a little awkward, on the verge of an outburst of even more awkward laughing.

I also made good progress on my Thorin Oakenshield socks. I finished the first one! I have zero hopes of finishing before the end of the olympics so am taking a teeny break from the bobbles and focus by knitting a (hopefully) easier sock. More soon!

Love, Renée

 

Casting on: Thorin Oakenshield

Hello Everyone,

Remember that sock I told you about yesterday? It no longer is anymore. It was finally going well, I had to redo the toe a few times, but i finally got art the finicky cast on (Judy’s Magic Cast-on on dpn’s is not so magic) and was almost done with the foot. I realized it was looking a bit wide, but attributed it to me just being unused to the toe-up sock method and figured it might just be supposed to look like this. But i tried it on after a while of trying to convince myself it was okay.

I measured my foot and i measured the sock. The difference between the two was quite immense.

I asked around for people with wide feet, but it turns out the sock was too large for anyone.  So it was frogged as i couldn’t be without a project now, could I? I had another wip (work-in-progress) with me, but i was unsure of my gauge. The needles i brought for the new version are the Addi Lace needles. They’re made of brass. And when in use they smell of brass. I didn’t really think their purchase through at all. I hate the smell of coins and i hate the smell of brass. I literally can’t stand the smell. I obviously didn’t think the purchase of those needles through properly… I heard lots of great reviews and so went and bought them when i was planning on knitting lace weight yarn for the first time. After 3 stitches i felt disgusting. That  smell always makes me feel icky.  it’s the reason why I always wash my hands after handling coins too.

Because of the weird scent issues I couldn’t work on that project (The only needles I brought were the addis and a cheap pair of circulars of which the join bothers me now that I’ve tried better ones). The sock had to be undone.

ANd of course I had to cast on something new too! I went back to the method of sock knitting I am familiar with. Top down on dpn’s and with a heel flap.  I picked Thorin’s Armour Socks by Margereta Marisch.

Hoping this one goes a bit better!

Love, Renée

Work In progress Wednesday: A new sock!

Hello Everyone,

Finally I’ve remembered it’s wednesday in time to post a wii wednesday post! I feel like it’s been such a long time since i did one. Today’s post is short but sweet. Socks! Socks are one of those things that are always good. I’ve really gotten into making socks. There are so many different sock patterns out there that it never gets boring and you get to use lots of fun yarn. They travel well, and as i spend about 4,5 hours in the train every weekend that’s a huge plus! there’s also a myriad of different techniques and constructions you can use to make a sock making them a great learning experience. Recently I came across the concept of Sock Madness. This is a group on Ravelry and every march they have an Insane (capitalized, because it’s a good insane!) sock making competition. There are several rounds with different mystery sock patterns. You need to finish within a certain timeframe to move on to the next round. The first round is 2 weeks. For me this seems like a challenge, but then i always put things down in between and then ignore it in favor of something else. I think i should at least be able to finish those! Then the times get shorter. Last year the winner knit her socks for the last round in 30 hours!!!!! WOW! I have no chance of winning, but i will be pleased if i pass the first round.

The materials list has already been released. As you have no idea what the socks look like it can be very misleading! Some of the things listed: yarn, chocolate, a drinking vessel and matches… uhoh. I guess the patterns will be emotionally challenging if we need booze and candy!

I can’t wait to start. In preparation I’ve cast on a pair of socks that use a technique I’m unfamiliar with. Toe up socks on double pointed needles. I’m not to sure i like the toe-up yet. The look massive! And i made a mistake last night and had to start over. The toe does look really neat though….

This is a picture form before my frogging, but this part looks the same in the new version. I have about an inch more now. I chose a lovely green opal yarn for these socks as the pattern page shows the socks in green and they look amazing! In the end i couldn’t imagine these in another colour than green.

I can’t wait to see if the fit is better than on top down socks….

Love, Renée

ps. Linking up once again!

Nails: Essence Sandstyle

Hello Everyone,

Today I have a new (well “new” it was new when i stopped blogging for a while, it’s not so new anymore and i’ve used the heck out of it already!) polish to share.

It’s essence sparkle sand effect in 163 hey Nude! It’s a nude sand style polish with a few glitters. It’s AMAZING! Nude but still sparkly!

My nails seem to have gotten a growth spurt since then (2 weeks or so ago) they’re now quite a lot longer! This polish is great when your nails aren’t that long. It’s subdued and yet still very much a glitter polish. Perfect for the workplace really.

Aah ❤ This has to be one of my top 10 favorites, just not number 1… But only because i’ve had the same number 1 for years. It was one of the first polishes I ever bought and the entire line has since been discontinued. So I’m only wearing it on very special occasions and I buy any polish with a similar colour and finish in the hope it can compare. I have around 10 of those now, but so far they don’t even come close! So I’m keeping my eyes peeled when I spot a blackish silver glitter with a smooth finish. (This sounds so mysterious! I’ll swatch it for the blog sometime, promise!)

Love, Renée

Freebies!

Hello Everyone,

Just a very quick post to let you all know that I’ve made 3 out of my 4 (so far anyway) patterns completely free!

They are:

Imperial Star

Anouk Headband

Seedling Cowl

They used to be paid patterns, but I decided that since I was such a newbie at designing (even though I got them all tested) I wanted them to be free. The cowl and headband are pretty basic so there are a lot of similar patterns out there so it just doesn’t make sense to charge. All I ask is that if you use these patterns to create items for sale is that you credit me for the pattern.

Love, Renée