Wednesday, 27 May 2009

Baby Blanket

Some time ago, I started knitting a patchwork blanket for a friend of mine who is expecting a baby next month. This was actually about four months ago. "Relax," I told myself. "What's the rush?"

Then suddenly, there's less than a month to go... and I still have three squares to knit and a column. Oh dear. Fortunately, we weren't doing much on Friday so I got two squares rattled off while watching "Rosemary's Baby". Do you think I could be jinxing this baby? Knitting its blanket during one of the best justifications for not getting pregnant?

So, here it is with the completed squares.

And here is the started column. It looks from this angle as though it might be too narrow but that's because the stocking stitch curls under.

Friday, 22 May 2009

Google Analytics

One month ago, I registered my blog on Google Analytics ( This is a tool that allows you to find out how people are finding your website, where they are coming from (geographically and technically - referral sites, search engines, networks). It's something that we have started using at work to monitor the use of some of our websites, but I wanted to play with it at home to see what it can tell me. It has been really interesting.

1. In less than a month, 100 people have visited my blog, though there have been over 200 visits. Around 50% of these are newbies and the other 50% are returning to read pages. I was stunned to find out that so many people have been dropping by and coming back. Thank you.

2. The majority of people visiting are in the UK, but there is a fair old number who have popped in from the US (which has vastly improved by knowledge of North American geography) but also from Poland, Japan, Turkey, France and Australia.

3. The searches that have resulted in people coming here have included the not terribly surprising: cartridge rib, socks, pixie coat - all knitting related and as this is a knitting blog, to be expected, as I mentioned. What has been surprising is the number of people who have got to this blog through searching for porn and sex confessions.

There are a number of very disappointed people out there as they have ended up on the pages titled "Sock Porn", or "Yarn Porn" or "Ally Pally Porn". Or discovered that SEX here usually refers to Stash Expanding eXpedition. Or discovered confessions about my attempts to botch knitting or sewing mistakes.

As a result of this post there will be some disappointed people tonight and over the weekend.

Monday, 18 May 2009

Finally, Some Bloody Progress

I have finished one of the curtains for the spare room. There's a fanfare playing in my head, if not everyone else's. This is going to be a very picture heavy post so if you are on dial up, you might like to put the kettle on.

1. Measuring up - the eyelet tape is my new discovery and a very happy discovery it is too. It minimises the risk of 'wonkiness'. However, there were too many eyelets on this, for the curtains, in my opinion.

2. So, I put the facias in position to see what this would look like with six eyelets instead of the twelve on the tape. I rather liked it so went with that.

3. Drawing the holes to cut out. On the front of the curtain!!! Nothing like living dangerously.

4. Cutting out said holes in the curtain.

5. Completed hole with eyelet facia pushed in. That's my foot you can see through there.

6. The view from the back. The eyelet tape is attached to the back of the curtain, in the same way that ordinary curtain tape is. Next job was to sew it in place.

Here's the room that the curtains are going in.

7. Putting the curtain up.

8. Fanfare please.

Sunday, 17 May 2009

Forgot to mention...

...Hobbycraft are selling "Sirdar - Soya" at £1.49 per ball, and I think this usually retails at £3.99 per ball. "Bargain," I thought.

I went shopping and bought lots of the above to knit the following for Niece No.2 and Nephew:Buster, Bo and Hans from "Rowan Babies". Hopefully, this yarn substitution will work well.

Saturday, 16 May 2009


I thought I would give you a break from curtain progress pictures. They're still not finished as this picture demonstrates - so I have still managed to sneak in a picture that was supposed to be curtain free. This has been the view in my living room for the last couple of weeks.

...Yes, the BF is a very understanding representative of his species. It is also very helpful that he is currently completing this year's final assignments for his OU degree. This means that he is rarely in the room to notice them or, more importantly, to complain.

Over the last few weeks, I've also been knitting socks to make a dent into the Christmas knitting.
Here, we have socks for my Mam, Niece No. 1, nephew and SIL.

Tuesday, 12 May 2009

Curtain Stages III

Nearly there. Still haven't bought the curtain tape but I sewed up most of one of the curtains on Saturday and I am really happy with the way it is taking shape.

1. Sewing up the side.

2. Modelled by me.

A time consuming but satisfying project.

Friday, 8 May 2009

Curtain Stages II

Started sewing up the curtains last night. I still need to pop out and buy some curtain tape otherwise I might as well have dish clothes hanging from the poles. These are going to be eyelet curtains and the material I have chosen is very soft, so the curtain tape needs to be placed between the lining and the curtain material (at the top with the eyelets) to give it some 'oomph'. (Yes, that is the correct technical term to describe what I want to achieve).

1. Sewing up the lining. Below, hopefully, you can see the very bad stitching on the right side of the lining's hem. However...

2. ...the stitch line is very neat on the wrong side of the lining. So, I am making an executive design decision and am going to make this the right side of the lining.

3. Pinning the elephant rim to the bottom of the main piece of fabric before starting to watch Season 5 of "The Wire".

I think the overall effect will be pretty good. The cream needed something to cheer it up, and the shine of the fabric will be a good contrast with the colours in the room.

These need to be done within a fortnight. We have friends coming to stay.

Wednesday, 6 May 2009

Curtain Stages

Spent last night pinning out the curtains. So, step-by-step photos coming up:

1. Pinning out the lining.

2. The elephant rim - trimming but before pinning.

3. Pinned edge - sharp corners.

4. Hefelumphs.

5. Botched mitred corner. Can't do it properly so this will do, for now.

Tuesday, 5 May 2009

It's Curtains....

...Or it will be, once I've made them.

We painted the spare room - Tuscan Terracotta and Apricot Summat or Other, which sounds garish, but isn't. The furniture is all seriously dark wood. Sounds oppressive, but isn't. I had bought material to make cushions (lovely contrasting cream - sounds like a bad dessert, but doesn't look like one). I also bought material to make curtains (though on a rethink, decided that this would be hideous).

I should take a picture of this room. It may help with descriptions.

So I went shopping again. The plan was predominantly cream curtains with a rust coloured pattern. The BF casually mentioned that something along the lines of my Mam's elephant rimmed plates would be good as a trim - a gold, orange and black motif.

I went to Dunelm's. Look what I found.

So, the BF has designed the curtains. The plan is to make a cream curtain - that has some sparkly bits on - with a trim at the bottom.

In other news, I decided to do some Christmas knitting at the weekend and I have rattled off two pairs of socks in "On-Line - Circle" for Niece Number 1 and my Mam. Here's one of them.