Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Memory Lane

Recently we had to clear out the loft for our insulation to be updated. I came home from work to find the entire contents of my life in the 1980s out on the patio. It was a very weird experience seeing things I'd forgotten I ever owned. Amongst all of the treasure (junk) were my old 1980s knitting patterns and my two beloved knitting machines, which I haven't used since 1994. I have a chunky and a standard and the relevant ribbers too. I'm loathe to get rid of them but to be honest I prefer hand knitting.

Here are two books I haven't seen for many a year, sadly my Kaffe Fasset - Glorious Knitting wasn't there, which means I must have got rid of it :(

Firstly the machine knit patterns. Machine Knitting Chic was a European magazine full of very elaborate designs as you can see from the covers.

I didn't have a Bond, I had (have) a Brother KH230 chunky machine, but the Bond patterns worked well.

Machine Knitting News was my then favourite magazine here are some of the specials I saved.

A random selection of pattern books.

And not forgetting babies and children ....

On to the hand knit patterns - I have put them into categories.

1) The glorious 1980s batwings - I hand knitted the white mohair at the front in red - I wore it for years. I also made the blue cardigan on my Brother chunky for two friends.

2) The geometrics - I don't remember making any of these - honestly!

3) Mohairs - I used to make lots of mohairs on my Brother chunky - but I don't remember making any of these. My house used to be constantly covered in the mohair of the jumper I was knitting - those fibres used to fly everywhere. I like the green slipover - might make this next winter!

4) Big shoulders - look at these two babies - shoulders you wouldn't mess with!

5) Chunky knits - I loved the blue snowflake jumper and the orange mohair but I didn't make either of them.

6) Long sleeve cotton jumpers - I definitely made the cream lacy pattern.

7) Short sleeve cotton jumpers - I made all of these except the blue one. I did the red and white batwing in yellow and white - it was awful, I didn't wear it much. I did the squares in red with white lines to match a pair of shoes that I had at the time - it was ok. The white lacy one I made for someone else. The cream lacy one I made in pink and loved it.

8) Cotton sleeveless tops - I made the blue one in a silky grey/blue/purple very muted colours - loved it. I made the pink one at the front in white and wore it all the time.

9) More summer tops - I made the green one in peach and it was one of my most favourite hand knits ever. I don't think I made any of the others.

10) Classics - I might do the diamond one in purples and lilacs.

11) Men - they didn't escape the geometrics either. I made the black stripe one for my then boyfriend - now husband - I don't remember him ever wearing it:(

12) Babies and children - I don't think I've ever made any of these.

And that concludes my trip down memory lane - I hope you enjoyed these retro memories too.

Out and About - Le Touquet

Mr Daffy is planning a big golf weekend away in Le Touquet so I said I would go with him for a day out to do a rekki on the golf courses and hotels. Here we are waiting to board P & O's Pride of Canterbury early on a Saturday morning.

Of course I took advantage of the long car journey to do some knitting on my Grape Vine Leaves sleeveless pullover.

Here we are at Hardelot - Golf de Dunes - quite nice scenery for a golf course.

Whilst in France it would be rude not to have a verre du vin blanc or two!

I took the opportunity to wander round the shops whilst Mr Daffy went to look at the hotels - he saw Lord Alan Sugar out and about in the streets, whilst I purchased some very pretty buttons.

The beautiful carousel on the seafront.

An interesting wooden balcony.

A walk along the seafront.

Then back on the flagship Spirit of France.

Friday, 23 March 2012

Spring has Sprung

 My magnificent Magnolia is well and truly on its way to full bloom.

The pansies are still blooming marvellous.

The Polyanthas are vibrant and gorgeous.

Two days later from the picture above and the Magnolia tree looks even more magnificent.

This is the first time I have planted Fritillaria - sometimes known as Snakes Head bulbs. It's easy to see where they got their nickname from!

Here is one opened out - they are tiny but perfectly formed.

When we moved into our house back in 1995 the garden was full of "cottage garden" type flowers and I loved it. However over time, two mini footballers and a lot of reshaping have meant that the old stock of Foxgloves, Campanula, Golden Rod, Daisies and Lupins simply disappeared. One of my favourite plants from those early years in our garden were the Aqualigias that appeared every spring. Having now persuaded Mr Daffy not to dig over this bed every spring and leave it to me, I am pleased to say that the Aqualigias have reappeared in their droves.

Here are some Aqualigias with some unknown bulbs and a Red Hot Poker in the background.

Here are some Aqualigias, with some bulbs, a daisy and sadly some weeds.

Aqualigias with a Kaffir Lily and some bulbs.

Aqualigias with Delphiniums poking through and some Siberian Wallflowers.

Aqualigias in the woodland spot with Ferns and Bergenia.

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

WIP report - 4

How many WIPs? 5
How many WIPs started since last report? 2
How many WIPs completed since last report? 2

Photo Gallery

Grape Vine Leaves

I have made some progress on Grape Vine Leaves since my discovery that I can't divide by two and centre my work properly!!

I have finished the front complete with extra ribbing on the right hand side.

And I have started the back.

Originally I was going to do the back in 5 x 5 rib but after about 10 rows of this I decided:
1) It was going to take forever;
2) I didn't like the ribbing anyway;
3) To frog it back to the bottom 4 x 4 rib and start again in stocking stitch.

Progress is still slow but I do love it.

However - I decided that I needed a little break from the Grape Vine this week and I made something for a Ravelry swap - which was soooo cute I then made one for a friend. However as I won't be posting the swap off until the weekend these two WIPs will have to remain a mystery until the Ravelry swap is received.

In the meantime - here is a sneak preview....

And here is the yarn that was left after all the knitting was complete - it was touch and go with the white as you can see.

Crochet Notes - Tudor Rose, Cappuccino Lace and Daisy Loop Bed Topper

Using Wendy Supreme Cotton Chunky and Rowan Aran Cotton with a strand of lace added. 6mm hook. (8 balls of blackcurrant and 1 teal.)...