Year of Projects #2: Brought to you by caffeine and Day Nurse

I’ve started this blog post three times now, although in my head, I’m up to eight goes. I think. Like quite a few other people, I seem to have come down with post-Fibre East lurgy, and trying to put sentences together has been like trying to nail jelly to the wall. Each time I think I know what I’m going to write, it head off in a totally different direction again.

What was I saying. Ah yes. Concentration. I lack it.

Despite spending most of the last few days just wanting to crawl back under the duvet, I have managed to get things done as well.

A pattern sample arrived to much cooing and squeeing.

I’ve been wrestling with the best way to draw crochet charts – knitters, you have no idea how much I envy you. I’m test-driving this software, which does the job nicely, but I have a sneaking suspicion might be more intelligent than I am. Well, more intelligent than I feel today, anyway.

I’ve been quilting moustaches, continuing my love/hate relationship with hand-quilting. I love the effect, but will admit that the process is something I find it hard to really enjoy. For me, it’s best done in front of the TV so that I’ve got something to engage my brain as well.

Okay, okay, so I didn’t actually make these myself, but to say I’m delighted would be an understatement. Actual tomatoes!! What I growed myself! How cool is that?

I’ve been swatching with a very odd yarn

And ripping out many rows of a very lovely one. Note to self: be MORE careful not to twist.

And I’ve been doing some sorting out and de-stashing. If anyone wants a look, there’s some nice yarns on my sale page on Ravelry. I’m also offering up some shawls for P/Hop here if you just can’t wait. Do check them out!

Finally, and sadly, I’ve been disposing of dead wellingtons. They split on top at Fibre East, although I only discovered this after I stepped in a deep puddle. Let’s just say I was squelching both inside and outside my wellies for the rest of the day.

Speaking of Fibre East, if anyone out there had any doubts, let me reassure you: Fibre folks are the friendliest I’ve ever come across. I met spinners, dyers, knitters, stitchers, all of whom welcomed me like I was the friend they’d been waiting to meet. Let’s see, there was Anna, Sarah, Joy, Debbie, Clare, Ann and, oh, lots of other people, to whom I can only apologise for not mentioning. But I must add a huge thanks to Sadie for driving, especially given the state of the main entrance by the end of the day.

Looking back, that’s not too shabby on the Year of Projects front. Two patterns are now in their final throes, I’m making progress on my swap shawl and knitting pattern, and I actually finished something that I’ll post about on Friday. Not too bad for someone who’s getting through tissues as though she had shares in Kleenex.

How’s everyone else’s week going? Anyone else feeling as scatterbrained as I am? And is this normal after a lovely wool-fest?

Away we go!

This is a sentence that a year ago, I had no idea I’d be writing. A year ago, I was on holiday in Menorca and thinking “My writing [my main hobby at the time] has completely dried up. What am I going to do with myself now?”

After a few months of deep gloom, the answer was “take up crochet” and the result is that my first patterns will go on sale this week at Darn it and Stitch in Oxford. Since this blog address is on the back of the patterns, I guess some people might have come over as a result of that. Hi! Hope you like them!

For folks who aren’t in Oxford, the patterns are:

Seashore hat (left). It’s a fairly simple hat pattern, and the first thing I ever made without a pattern to follow. Most of the hats I’ve bought in the past have been too big at the top, too tight in the middle and not long enough to keep my ears warm. The design of this hat was intended to solve all three of those problems!

Stripy clutch (right). Yes, I know, I need to work on being imaginative with pattern names. I’ll improve, I’m sure! I had the mental image for this one about 3 months ago, but it wasn’t until the subject of patterns for selling came up that I was spurred into action. I’d seen lots of patterns with horizontal stripes, but not many with vertical ones. I also love bags with linings, so it was a chance to combine the two.

I’m surprisingly proud and predictably nervous about these patterns, but I did my best with them, Jo is happy with them, so all I can do now is send them out into the world and see what happens. Since I’m away in (hopefully) sunny France for 2 weeks now, I will have to find out when I get back!

Thank you, little patterns! It’s been great! Be brave, be good and make people happy!