Tuesday, 29 May 2007

Learning how to add photographs

I need to make the blog look more interesting and record the things I have knitted and am knitting, so I'm learning how to add photographs onto the blog.

These are the socks I made for my boyfriend's Grandad. They are Opal Hundertwasser 637A and I think they are beautiful. Walter recently went to the hospital and one of the nurses commented on his socks and then made her boss come and look at them as well. What a compliment!

Here are some other socks I have knitted:

Opal Petticoat Wool 1296 - my first pair of socks back in January! I'm wearing these today and I still love them.

Meilienweit Multieffekt possibly, but I'm not too sure. I'll have to look that up.

This is Trekking Color Aquarell 166. These were made for a friend's birthday and she is looking forward to wearing them when she goes skiing again next year.
At the moment I am knitting my six year old niece a pair of socks with Colinette's Jitterbug sock yarn in shade Florentina. We are going camping at the weekend (weather permitting) and she needs some woolly socks, so one is finished and I have a couple of days to go. I'll manage that. She is really taken with the one she has so far.

Thursday, 24 May 2007

Rhett Butler all the way!

I ended up watching tv until 12.30 last night and felt tired all day at work. The reason I went to bed so late was a programme on BBC 2 regarding romantic fiction and the way in which women fall in love with the heroes. I could not resist watching this programme because I knew my hero Rhett Butler would be discussed.

The programme discussed the big four - Mr Darcy, Mr Rochester, Heathcliffe and Rhett and was really interesting. But what amazed me was the number of people who love Mr Darcy. He's alright and Pride and Prejudice is a good novel, but I would never fall in love with him. He is a bit of a drip in my opinion.

Rhett, on the other hand, is the man. He is strong and manly, he's dangerous and witty and he loves Scarlet passionately and he loves her many faults just as much. He's so knowing and wise and despite his dubious dealings and reputation he's generous and loyal to the people he loves. What's Darcy got going for him? Nothing compared to Rhett.

I'm going to Madrid in the summer on my own for a fortnight and last night I decided that I would be reading Gone With The Wind again. I was already looking forward to Madrid, but now I'm looking forward to it even more. It's a couple of years since I last read the book and it was nothing but a pleasure. Obviously I've seen the film many times, but the book beats everything.

Do Rhett and Scarlet get back together after the book ends? I never feel convinced that they get back together and I do wonder about it frequently. A friend of mine tells me they must get back together, but Rhett is so resolute at the end. Do discussions about this exist in the internet anywhere?

Monday, 21 May 2007

Freaked out by blogging

My latest curiosity is looking at other people's blogs by clicking on Next Blog. Does anyone else do this? It is truly bizarre what is out there! Some of it is interesting, some of it is dull, but all of it is inexplicable. Why are people (myself included) blogging? Who are they doing it for? I don't have an answer.

I'm now wondering whether people have read anything I've written. Admittedly, it's unlikely. Firstly, I've not been on here very long and I've only told one person (you know who you are) about my blog. Secondly, my blog looks really bland compared to many out there; people probably wouldn't stop to read anything.

Obviously, all blogs except mine include photos, and many have their own graphics, but I was amazed by ones with background music and all the interactive stuff. Many have icons showing the blogger's affiliations. At the moment mine just doesn't measure up. No doubt it will come with time and I will learn how to show my photos and I will get some lovely graphics and membership of groups. The music, however, will never be on this blog.

I'm sure anthropologists must have a field day with the concept of blogging. I must admit that I'm amazed by it all. I'm usually very private and love the fact that if you put my name into Google that I'm not to be found. I refuse to register with Friends-Reunited and all that jazz. I love my name not existing in cyberspace, so why am I expressing thoughts and wanting to document my life in this way?

It's as if I want to cheat the system. I want to tell you things about me, but not reveal who I am. No self-portraits here. When I do get my photos on here I will be noticeably absent. Names will have to be changed. I won't tell any lies, but I won't be entirely open.

Sunday, 20 May 2007

During my internet travels I've found alsorts.

I've been looking at many different blogs today and found an interesting knitting quiz which I've filled out. This will give you a better understanding of my knitting expertise (admittedly limited).

Edit the list, bold for stuff you’ve done, italics for stuff you plan to do one day, and normal for stuff you’re not planning on doing.
Afghan/Blanket – got all the wool and have started a few squares for a throw for my new sofa, but not very far with it yet.
I-cordGarter stitch – but not sure why I would use it
Knitting with metal wire – not on your nelly!
Shawl – but probably only one because they look really tricky!
Stockinette stitch
Socks: top-down – favourite thing at the moment
Socks: toe-up – don’t need to, have worked out how many rows I need to fit different sized feet
Knitting with camel yarn
Mittens: Cuff-up
Mittens: Tip-down
Knitting with silk – that reminds me, I have a fan and feather pure silk scarf to finish one day.
Moebius band knitting – no idea what it is?
Participating in a KAL – as above
Sweater – but alas, only one.
Drop stitch patterns – a lovely scarf in a lovely yarn.
Knitting with recycled/secondhand yarn
Slip stitch patterns – one of my first unfinished projects. A cushion. Now off the needles as boyfriend was going on about whether it was ever going to be finished. He now knows conclusively the answer to that question.
Knitting with banana fiber yarn – hate bananas. Have only eaten two in whole life. Just the smell is repellent. Not allowed in the house. Though I do love those synthetic and horrible banana sweets.
Domino knitting (modular knitting)
Twisted stitch patterns – yes, a great effect.
Knitting with bamboo yarn – inevitable one day soon as it does seem to be the yarn of the moment.
Two end knitting
Charity knitting – should do some of this one day.
Knitting with soy yarn – did a scarf with some soy content. Does that count?
Cardigan – another project on the needles at the moment. I love cardigans so this should be a high priority.
Toy/doll clothing
Knitting with circular needles
Knitting with your own handspun yarn
Graffiti knitting (knitting items on, or to be left on the street) – like the idea, but couldn’t bear to leave my hard work to the elements for someone to destroy.
Continental knitting – wished I’d learned this in Germany but was not a knitter when I was there. Lived with a German lady who was a wizz at making socks this way. Another wasted opportunity…
Designing knitted garments – I’m sure I will do this one day. It’s not for lack of ideas, just lack of time.
Cable stitch patterns (incl. Aran) – love cables. Have books devoted to them.
Lace patterns – done a bit but always get confused along the way.
Publishing a knitting book – never going to happen.
Scarf – made many. Still love the first ever project I made for boyfriend in Rowan Spray. Simple garter stitch but truly lovely!
Teaching a child to knit – I’ve attempted this one with my six year old niece. She can finger knit, but needles…we’re still a long way off!
American/English knitting (as opposed to continental)
Knitting to make money
Button holes – a necessity with the cardigan I will one day make.
Knitting with alpaca – a scarf.
Fair Isle knitting – but too scared.
Norwegian knitting – no idea.
Dyeing with plant colours (Just changed spellings as I’m British.)
Knitting items for a wedding
Household items (dishcloths, washcloths, tea cozies…) – what a waste of time and yarn!
Knitting socks (or other small tubular items) on two circulars – four or DPNs for me!
Olympic knitting
Knitting with someone else’s handspun yarn – would be lovely. But don’t know anyone, so unlikely.
Knitting with DPNs – always bamboo.
Holiday related knitting
Teaching a male how to knit – taught boyfriend to finger knit. Does that count?
Knitting for a living
Knitting with cotton – but I prefer wool.
Knitting smocking
Dyeing yarn
Knitting art
Knitting with wool
Textured knitting
Kitchener BO - is this grafting or Kitchener stitch?
Knitting with beads

Long Tail CO
Knitting and purling backwards
Machine knitting
Knitting with self-patterning/self-striping/variegating yarn – I blame this for the sock obsession.
Stuffed toys – last Christmas made a lovely teddybear for nephew.
Baby items
Knitting with cashmere – best friend bought me aload for birthday. Such a good friend!
Knitting with synthetic yarn – urgh!
Writing a pattern – I could do that!
Gloves – last year's obsession.
Knitting with linen
Knitting for preemies
Tubular CO
Freeform knitting
Short rows
Cuffs/fingerless mitts/arm warmers
Knitting a pattern from an online knitting magazine
Knitting on a loom
Thrummed knitting
Knitting a gift – almost everything I knit is a gift.
Knitting for pets – surely cat would look even more handsome with a scarf.
Knitting with dog/cat hair – done unwittingly.
Hair accessories
Knitting in public – I knit everywhere. Even knitted waiting in a restaurant with boyfriend. How understanding is he?

An obsession with socks

It seems that all the knitters I know are knitting socks at the moment and socks are all I seem to knit these days. I always use four dpns and have not knitted on regular needles for well over a month now.

My first pair began in January during the holidays. I just had the urge to learn how to knit socks and that would need new yarn. I raced to my local yarn shop and chose some Opal Petticoat sock yarn. It took me some time to get my head around the knitting in the round thing, but I quickly got the hang of it, managed to turn the heel with help from a friend and within a fortnight I had a pair of socks.

After that I bought more sock yarn and made a belated Christmas present for a friend in Opal Feeling. Then I made another pair for myself in Opal Acapulco. Then another friend got a birthday pair of socks in some blue Lana Grossa. Then it was a pair for my boyfriend's grandad in Opal Hundertwasser. Then a pair for myself in a different Opal Hundertwasser. Then I made myself another pair in Opal Crazy and now I'm making my boyfriend a pair in Opal Rainforest animals. I feel so prolific as I'll finish my eighth pair later this week.

All this sounds fantastic, but knitting socks has become addictive. I have many obsessions in life and have an addictive personality and I cannot break the cycle of casting on another pair of socks. They are just so satisfying and I find the colours and patterns enthralling. Yesterday I went to my local yarn shop and bought another four balls of sock yarn and whilst I have every intention of knitting them all, my ambition exceeds the time I have available to complete them. I may only be 28 but already I am looking forward to my retirement and dream of knitting socks all day every day. Is this normal?

The trouble is I have other projects in the stash waiting for completion. I have the back to Rowan's tulip in a beautiful cerise and purple mix waiting for a left and right side so it can be sewn up and worn. I really want to finish it, but it seems to difficult compared to socks. I love knitting, but sewing up drives me mad.

I think I need to make a commitment here and now in writing that the next project after these socks will be Tulip. After all, it will actually be worn this summer whereas these lovely woolly socks aren't really suitable for the warm weather we're having. I keep saying that I need to think about my Christmas presents and make a good start as everyone's getting socks this year. But that's surely premature.

Therefore, I, McKnitty, do solemnly swear that I will finish Tulip before completing another pair of socks.

Let's hope I'm a woman of my word.

Saturday, 19 May 2007

What's the point of my blog?

Anyone who knows me, knows that I am mad on knitting. I've been knitting for almost two years and I'm well and truly hooked. I love looking at other knitting blogs and really enjoy reading their knitting thoughts and looking at photos of their projects. Now it's my turn to join the internet action.

My first blog

Who would have thought it? My thoughts on the internet! Hope I've got things to say now!