Friday, 16 November 2012

Oh! A Belly Cardi!

My daughter is a worthwhile recipient of knitwear. She gushes. She wears her knitted garments with pride. She takes them off to eat. She tells everyone 'My mummy made this for me'.




I didn't make this gorgeous sweater though, Karen did. The pattern, Bella, is now available on ravelry, and Karen was one of my patient testers. She made the three years size and it fits Noo with plenty of growing room. The yarn is Karen's own hand-spun which she sells (along with the handmade buttons!) at GiftofGraceHandspun








When Noo talks about this cardi she says 'This is my Belly cardi. It's not from the Postman, it's from Karen'.

I'll say 'This is the cardigan she mastered skipping in'. Because that's what I'll remember.

Thank you so much Karen, from me and Noo, we feel very special!



Monday, 12 November 2012

Thoughts on Knitted Gifts

With Christmas around the corner there's been a lot of talk about gift knitting. If, like me, you know you're going to knit some gifts, most of which will never get finished, in fact most will be started far too late to be finished in time for the holidays, then there's really only two rules worth making:

1) DON'T tell anyone they will be getting a knitted gift.

2) Have a back up plan (which you can always keep, save for later or give to someone else if you miraculously finish the knitted gift).

Following these two rules will ensure that you don't need to go through the embarrassment of wrapping a half finished hat and, MOST IMPORTANTLY you can enjoy your gift knitting, indulge your startitis, justify those Christmas shopping personal yarn purchases (come on, it's not just me, surely?) and to help get you started early, I'm offering a discount code for all my individual patterns from now until the end of November.

Enter the coupon knitgiftsnow to get a 25% discount on any single pattern (e-books not included)

If you're discerning about who you knit for and what you knit them, your recipient might happily wear their knitted gift everyday, like my friend below wears his new fingerless mitts: 




If I can get my act together, I'll put together a free pattern for these mitts, so you can make them for your friends too!

Friday, 2 November 2012

A Hereditary Disease

I look at my kids, and I want them to inherit a healthy world, that's all.
It easy not to think about it, because it's scary, but it's worth a little thought...



Wednesday, 27 June 2012

How to Justify Not Writing a Pattern

Make an adult version, ahem, because you need to, to um, do the maths ;)


For the main colour I used my own hand dyed BFL DK in the colourway 'Shapes in the Clouds'. This yarn feels really sturdy and is warm and soft, I think it's the perfect sweater yarn.  

The contrasting yarn is Plucky Knitter Primo Worsted in colourway 'Early Light'. 





This sweater is the perfect length. originally, I worked the same cable detail from the yoke for the hem of the body, but found that it didn't sit right, so I ripped back and worked a plain garter stitch band instead, and now it's perfect.

Notice that the sleeve cuffs have the cable detail too...


I added short rows between the cabled sections for a higher neck back. I was worried it would be very noticeable, but it worked well, and makes for a good fit.











So now I really need to write up this pattern and the original 'Bella', which will come in child sizes up to 10 years. I'll just put the kettle on first...

Saturday, 16 June 2012

A Day of Epic Embarrassment

So this week I took a huge number of parcels to the post office. As many as I could carry in the 3 large reusable bags I keep for just this purpose. I lugged them happily up the hill, with the usual relief (phew, glad that's done), satisfaction (a job well done) and excitement (I can't wait for them to get their yarn!!) Emma and I had spent the best part of the day before carefully packing up Artichaut kits and update orders. I love packing kits with Emma, because often she'll be seeing the yarn for the first time and will say gratifying things like 'Ooh, it'll be gorgeous in that colour'. And I get excited all over again. Usually our packing involves her doing all the oragnising, making lists of who gets what and which orders need to be combined and who needs a postage refund, and me, still reskeining yarn that's only just dry, forgetting to make the tea and nattering incessantly (because only my hands are busy) while she tries to concentrate. If you buy yarn from the shop, it's thanks to Emma that anything gets done with a modicum of order and efficiency, so send her a happy thought while you open your parcel.

Anyway, I get to the post office - and there's no queue!! Whoop! - at least until lovely Wendy has processed  my 2 dozen or so parcels and announced the large sum of money to pay while I'm fumbling in my purse for my bank card which I HAVE LEFT AT HOME because I removed ALL MY CARDS to purchase a new electric hob (for dyeing sweater quantities, yay). Wendy kindly told me to go home and get my card and come back when the post office reopened at 2pm to pay for the already processed packages. Mortified. So I  went to work to drop off my stuff, then walked back home to pick up my cards only to find the weekly food shop that I was expecting to be delivered that evening had been only ten minutes earlier, because I had got the time wrong. So I had to call the supermarket (who were less accommodating than the post office) to apologise and arrange a redelivery for that evening so that my family could eat that day (while I would still be at work).

It was one of those days that was clearly going downhill, and was saved by the fact that no-one treated my like the moron I felt like. And if I hadn't had to go home to pick up my cards I wouldn't have been able to reorganise the food shop delivery and I would have had a very hungry family that evening...

Here's my own Artichaut in Alpaca Silk Sport in Iris:


Monday, 30 April 2012

Wuthering Heights

I'm finally reading Wuthering Heights. So what? Well, I guess I thought I should, I mean, it's attested to be one of the most original pieces of literature ever written. And it was written in Haworth ~ which (insert drum-roll here) is the name of my personal favourite of my colourways. I'd rather read Jane Eyre, but I don't have it to hand...


This post is a little late. That's because I really wanted to record a little story to tell you about my recent trip to Haworth when I announced the winner of the colourway competition, but I just haven't had time, and I didn't want to leave you hanging any longer ;-)


So from all the people who guessed Haworth in their comment on the last blog post I picked two random winners, and they are:


pebbledash and Octonat

Please contact me at lionessarts@gmail.com with your favourite colourway and yarn base and your address and I'll post your lovely prize next week!

Thanks to everyone who left a comment and for all the birthday wishes...

Hopefully sometime soon I'll post that story on the blog...


Here's a picture of Haworth on MCN DK:



Friday, 20 April 2012

Colourway Competition!

The 29th April 2012 will be the Lioness Arts Etsy Shop's first birthday and I'm planning some party games

To win a skein in your favourite colourway leave a comment blelow with the answer to the following question:

What is my favourite of all my colourways so far?


Here is the sold section of the Etsy shop if you need inspiration ;-)
All correct answers will be put tinto the random number generator and 2 winners will be announced on April 29th :)