Friday, June 29, 2012

To market, to market!

A few years ago, I bought some hemp yarn - it was on sale, and I was interested to try it. I finally made some time to do this earlier this year! A market bag seemed ideal - but which one!! There are so many patterns out there, and most of them free.

I am glad I settled on this one:
Pattern: Ilene Bag, by Hannah Ingalls. I really like this pattern for a few reasons - it has a solid (stocking stitch) base, it has an easy pattern, and a nice open weave without being too open - even when stretched. It has a ribbed edge on the top, which is stretchy but not too open, and it has a ribbed handle which doesn't stretch too much. Oh, and no seaming! And did I mention it is a free pattern?!

It's a tricky thing, with a market bag, to make it stretch but not too much - you don't want it dragging around your ankles when it is full of goodies. This one is, dare I say it, pretty much perfect - a nice size, but not too huge and cumbersome.
Yarn: Hemp for Knitting Allhemp6, about 1.75 skeins in colour 21, a lovely periwinkle sort of blue. I'll be honest, it is hard on the hands, and I could only knit a few rounds with it at a time when I was doing the mesh part of the bag, but it feels really nice once knit up, and I know it will wash well (I haven't washed it yet, given I haven't actually used it yet!)
Sticks: 3.5 and 4mm KnitPicks Harmony Options. The ribbing and handles is done on the smaller needles, which is a great idea.

Time: 25 January 2012 - 25 April 2012. It had a little rest while it was part of the Easter Show display this year (I tucked the unfinished handle inside, so no-one was any the wiser that it wasn't finished!
Modifications: None at all! I'm really quite pleased with this bag. I think I'm going to use it as my project bag for my TdF project, actually! And I'm very pleased to have used up some yarn from stash!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Forgive me...Stash Honesty May 2012

Forgive me, blog readers, for I have's been a MONTH since my last post!  Oh dear.

But the washing is on the line (yes, it is finally SUNNY after what seems like a month of rain as well, but is really only maybe a week and a half), the boys are at the park, I have a cup of tea and some milo slice, and I am blogging!
It's been a busy month - we've had our roof replaced, the exterior of the house painted, and a new bathroom installed (more on all of that in another post!). For the two week bathroom installation, we stayed at the MiL's, which was good, but no internet - thank goodness husby has 3G on his iPad, so I wasn't completely marooned!

Sadly, not so busy on the crafting front.  Connor has been sleeping less during the day, and since nap times are my main knitting/crochet time, I have been missing out a bit.  And I've even fallen behind for the first time with my sexypuffs - only 20 done in May! (June is going to be even worse...lucky I'm ahead of schedule a bit).
On the upside, I didn't buy any yarn in May (let's not talk about June just yet...) and even though the Craft Fair was on this week, I was reasonably restrained.
In: zero!  zip zilch nada nothing (I need to get it all out now, it might not happen again this year...)
Out: a measly 3.25 x 50g balls.  Gick!
Metres used:  Only 547m (YTD: 4,577.5m)
Stash neutral?  No...+16.5 x 50g balls

I have also been working on a sample for a new class I am going to be teaching at another yarn store (a sneak peek below) which is soaking as I type, to be blocked while the sun continues to shine (who knows how long it will stay sunny!). 
And I'm excited to be planning my Tour de France KAL project.  I've got two options:

This vest, in Noro Shirakaba - I have even swatched!  And OMG, this feels DIVINE.  It's a cotton/silk/nylon/wool blend and knits up just so nicely. 
The colours are nicer in real life (of course!).  Lovely deep blue and charcoal and silvery grey.  The project is worked in garter stitch and reverse stocking stitch, but I think I like the stocking stitch side better.

The other option is a crochet motif something something in this yarn:
(which is charcoal, silver grey, cream and of course sunshine yellow!)

I'm leaning towards the crochet, mostly because I know I can finish the project during the TdF, whereas I probably won't finish the vest.  Not that I really care about finishing, but it would be nice to actually get something done done DONE in that space of time.  What do you think?  And if you want to sign up for the KAL, it is not too late!