I may have been away for a couple of weeks, but at least I have a bumper list of things to share with you today. Since the scan my bump has been developing nicely, although some people still think it is eating-all-the-pies induced rather than being caused by a bun-in-the-oven:-/ I don't mind though, as I know they're in there! Sven and I heard the heartbeat the other week too, which was completely magical, although when we got back home and told everyone about it, Lloyd was grumpy that we hadn't recorded it for him to sample and turn into crazy prog jazz stuff (to listen to some of which, click here
). We'll do better next time:-)
Anyway, the growing realisation that things are going well and that in all probability I will
be holding a baby in my arms - a baby that I am hugely responsible for - I have been trying to prepare in the only way I know how: making things. This last few weeks have been a haze of buying wool, dyeing it and trying to knit it into useful things. The dyeing bit was an unexpected detour, but through the extremely useful forum at Cloth Nappy Tree
, I have learnt how to dye protein fibres (wool, alpaca, silk - anything that started life on an animal) with food colouring and vinegar. It's so easy I almost still can't believe it, despite having dyed everything in sight! Have a Google if you fancy giving it a go - there are enormous numbers of websites which give tutorials.
So, here are some of latest crafty voyages. As I say, they are all on a woolly theme, but I'm currently working on some patchwork so my next post should be a little more varied.
Firstly, here are some of those yarns dyed with food colouring...
This is a kettle-dyed peacock themed yarn which is dyed over a mid-grey 4-ply. I've started booties in this but got bored after one, so will have to revisit them in the future.
This next one is a deliciously dip-dyed superwash wool which you can see knitted up a bit later in this post. I'd say this is my biggest success so far.
The third one is one I did for a dye-along on a brilliant Ravelry group called 'What A Kool Way To Dye'. No, they're not suicidal knitters, but in the US you can use powdered Kool Aid (a very acidic soft drink) to dye wool. As it's not available over here, I've been using food colouring instead though.
The theme was "Fairy Lights" so I dug out my lovely 'Good Faeries/Bad Faeries' book by Brian Froud (thank you Lloyd!) and picked one I liked. It turned out to be the Slippery Faery, responsible for both dropping things, and Freudian slips. There she is on the right.
I have knitted it up into half of a little ribbed vest, but I don't like how the colours are pooling, so will have to undo it and find a more suitable pattern.
I've dyed much more yarn than this, but I shall spare you all the details! Between dyeing bursts (it really doesn't take long) I've been knitting things like a fiend, and Sprog's stash is already growing mightily. As they're going to be born in winter I am worried they'll be cold, so it feels like a great reason to be knitting. Also, I love the speed at which baby clothes come into being - for an impatient person like me it's a definite bonus.
A lovely hat in Noro, that went slightly wrong and will probably not fit them until they're 2 or 3.
A pair of stay-on baby booties from a pattern on Ravelry - and apparently they really do work±
A fetching little beanie knitted from home-dyed wool Sirdar Eco Wool. Lovely and cosy:-)
Another hat in an alpaca blend. It's very soft and light, but feels like it will keep the winter winds out.
A soaker (for going over cloth nappies) knitted from the home-dyed blue/green skeins above. I loved knitting this, the colours came out beautifully, it's useful AND it's cute. What more could you ask?
The second picture shows the colours more accurately. I really like them, and hopefully will make Sprog a lot of lovely soakers. I'm quite determined on the cloth nappy front, but I will never say never to disposables. If my sanity depends on it at any point, I'll use them if needs be, though I must say that part of the appeal of cloth nappies (and they have many appealing points) is that I can make them, and thus unmake them, if necessary, and you definitely can't say that about disposables.
Although I'm sure there are other bits I've made (in fact, I know there are) that's all you're getting for now. I'll try to be back soon with news of my busy hands, but I'm away with Lloyd visiting my parents next week, and visiting Sven's parents the weekend after, so I'm not sure how much I'll get done.
Stay busy, lovely people, and enjoy the summer:-)
P.S. I forgot to mention, I got a merit for Foundation! Although I wasn't happy with my final piece, to have got a merit having done the majority of the course on a part-time basis feels really good. I miss uni already, but am trying to engineer reasons to pop back in next year.