Sunday, 21 May 2017

The Wedding Countdown: Knitted Ring Cushion

Knitted ring cushion using King Cole Bamboo Cotton

It's only 4 months to the wedding and I, for one, think time is passing far too slowly. I want to marry Mark now! Then again, what are a few more months after 10 years, eh? 

Our wedding preparations are nearly all done. We have the suppliers, the venue, insurance, the registrar, and most decorations. The last few things we need luckily aren't time sensitive, so we can relax now. It's surprising how few of the decorations are handmade, but I decided I'd rather not stress about things. Still, there will be a few handmade touches, of course, including my beautiful wedding shawl.

Mark's mum has also been busy knitting for the wedding and made me a bag for the day. I suggested it because brides tend not to have pockets to keep anything in and I am sure I may need a tissue at some point that evening! 

She also surprised us with this ring cushion in the same colours of the bag and my wedding shawl. Isn't it lovely? It is made from King Cole Bamboo Cotton, finished with a sewn lace border, two ribbons and embroidery. It's hard to tell from the photos, but this cushion is quite big. It will take pride of place at the wedding, though we probably won't be able to use it during the ceremony because we already had something else in mind. (Unless that goes wrong, which it might because it is something I want to add some finishing touches to.)

Did you make anything for your own wedding or a friend's? I'd love to hear about it (and maybe get a few more ideas). 


Saturday, 13 May 2017

Knittin' In Britain: An Infographic

Knitting in Britain YouGov Results Infographic

Welcome to my first ever infographic! I love a good infographic because it can present a lot of information in a concise and visually appealing manner. Knittin' in Britain contains information from YouGov about our favourite hobby. I have to say I was surprise by the very precise conclusion that the average knitter likes a slice of coffee and walnut cake. If that is true, I am not your average knitter - but then again I am also not 55 years old.

I hope you enjoy the infographic! Is there anything in it that surprises you?

Saturday, 6 May 2017

King Cole Zig Zag 4-Ply

King Cole Zig Zag 4-ply Bilberry Pie yarn review

This may be the longest pair of socks I have ever knitted - and by that I don't mean that they are knee socks. It's just taking me a very long time to knit them and I am still on the first sock of the pair! 

I was sent yarn by Laughing Hens who gave me this King Cole Zig Zag 4-ply in the Bilberry Pie colourway. As you can see, it knits up in stripes, some of which are patterned. Unlike the name, you do not get any zig zags, though. The colours go well together, I think, and even though this kind of patterned sock yarn isn't my cup of tea, these socks will make a great present for someone else.

The yarn knits up well and feels like your average sock yarn that will wear well and not cause any trouble. If you like sturdy, reliable sock yarn, this is a good choice. Especially knitters who prefer knitting vanilla socks, but want features to add interest to the plain pattern, should have a look at this yarn. Choose your favourite colour combination and give it a go! 

King Cole Zig Zag 4-ply Bilberry Pie yarn review

I am knitting a pair of socks from this yarn as a Christmas present. You can never start to early! However, I thought I'd have finished them by now. I wish I had more time to knit lately, but you know how it is. Luckily, there is lots of time till Christmas so these socks will get done. I'd love to do a bit more Christmas knitting - and then there is still that jumper I have been wanting to knit for ages.

Let me now if you have used King Cole Zig Zag before and what you think of it. Do you like patterned yarns or do you prefer others?

Disclosure: This yarn was sent to me free of charge by Laughing Hens in exchange for a review. My opinions are impartial and honest and I do not receive monetary compensation for my post.

Sunday, 30 April 2017

Knitting & Crochet Inspiration: Sweet Treats

Knitting and crochet inspiration

After some very mild weeks we have suddenly had a few colder days again, but this doesn't stop me from looking forward to sunshine and proper spring weather. It does make me hesitate to leave the house without a scarf and hat, though. Time for an edition of knitting and crochet inspiration that is full of sweet treats!

1. Luckily, the cool temperatures don't mean you need to stay away from ice cream. Thanks to Melanie Berg's Ice Cream and Soda Mitts, you can enjoy them all you want without your hands freezing. The great thing is they're easy to knit and ideal for beginners. Give them a go!

2. If you are as much of a fan of ice cream as I am, but need to pace yourself, perhaps crocheting some ice cream cones in lots of flavours will keep away the cravings for a little bit longer. This free pattern is perfect for crocheters wanting to use up leftover yarn in a variety of colours. 

3. Aren't these little cotton candy buddies the sweetest you've ever seen? Just ignore that they are described as Christmas decorations - they are perfect for anything you may have in mind for them. I especially love how fluffy they are, an effect created by brushing the finished crocheted form.

4. Your Ice Cream Shawl will keep away the cool wind sweeping through our parts lately. Lace lovers will enjoy the delicate pattern and as far as I can see, the repeats should be easily memorised after a few rows. Like many of today's patterns, this one is free.


Sunday, 23 April 2017

The Making of a Unicorn


Unicorns are everywhere these days and as I work with a unicorn-mad colleague, I often hear about the latest unicorn-themed recipes, smoothies and other weird products. In turn, I send her the latest info on unicorn products from Germany and translate recipes she might like. "It's all happening in Germany," she keeps saying because there seems to be no end to unicorn chocolates, drinks and even, as I recently discovered, sweet-scented toilet paper with unicorn print. Why we need any of that, I don't know, but it's fun!

So when I heard that Simply Knitting published its latest issue with a unicorn knitting kit, of course I had to buy it for her. Over Easter I kept my needles busy with a creature that actually came out looking the way it should. (Apart from a problem with different lengths of hair, but that sorted itself out in the end.) It worked so well that I plan to knit another one for myself sometime.

I was really excited to give the toy to my colleague, but I had to wait for three very long days because problems with the trains meant she couldn't get to work till the end of the week. I placed the unicorn on her desk while she was away and fashioned a little diary for it, complete with entries about how it was looking forward to meet her.

And of course she loved it! She'd been feeling down lately, which I didn't even know, so the unicorn came just at the right time. As I said, it's a magical creature. It comes to you just when you need it. Feed it Skittles and it will keep you company for a long time.


Sunday, 16 April 2017

Happy Easter! Have a Unicorn


Wishing you all a wonderful Easter break! 

Do you get crafty over Easter and paint eggs, too? This is a tradition I have kept up so every year I colour some eggs, usually with dyes from Germany. There is quite a variety of dyes and I like to have a little stash ready for the next few years. 

This year I used pastel dyes you dissolve in a mug with water and vinegar. Just drop the boiled egg in carefully, wait till it has the desired colour, and remove it. I wanted to try something different this time and decided to turn my eggs into unicorns. I was inspired by these beauties. Once I located the glue gun I only ever use once in a blue moon, I was ready to give it a go.

I used tin foil to make the horns, a leafy gold ribbon to make ears, scrap yarn in various colours to make the hair, and some colouring pens for the faces (felt tip for the eyes and pencils for the cheeks). 

I have to admit I absolutely love them! This could have gone disastrously wrong! My favourite is the blue one with pink hair. There are six of these unicorns in total and I am very proud of them.

Happy Easter!


Sunday, 9 April 2017

Giveaway: British Wool Show 2017


Are you itching to visit the British Wool Show this year? This is your chance! I'm giving away ten tickets - yes, 10! - to Absoknittinglutely followers.

A few years ago I had a great time at the show. Back then it took place in York, but the show has moved a little further north in Yorkshire. It's still the same show with a variety of vendors selling everything for your woolly needs and the Sheep Show Man is back, too. I highly recommend seeing him and his dancing sheep.

There will be a shuttle bus to pick up visitors from Thirsk railway station and Market Square, so don't worry if you don't have a car. I used the shuttle bus service last time and it was very convenient. It was a lovely day out.


The details


When:
Saturday, 8 July 2017 from 10:00-17:00
Sunday, 9 July from 10:00-16:00


Where:
Thirsk Rural Business Centre
Blakely Lane, Thirsk
North Yorkshire
YO7 3AB


Further information:
(This is also where you can buy tickets if you prefer not to join in this giveaway.)

Follow:
You can find the British Wool Show on Facebook and Twitter to keep up-to-date.


Win the tickets


Tickets are valid for a day of your choice. In order to win tickets for the British Wool Show 2017, you need to do one of the following:

1. Leave a comment on this blog post and let me know how many tickets you would like and why. Please also let me know how I can contact you if you win (such as social media handle or your own blog). Do not leave your phone number or email address as they will be visible to everyone.

OR

2. Follow me on Twitter and reply to one of my tweets to let me know how many tickets you would like.

OR

3. Reply to my giveaway post on Facebook and let me know how many tickets you would like.

OR

4. Comment on my Instagram post about this giveaway and let me know how many tickets you would like.


Please note


You will get only one entry, no matter how often or where you take part in this giveaway.

The giveaway will run till 30 April 2017. I will notify the winners via Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or your blog, depending on how they entered.


Good luck, everyone!