Week 5: Christmas Catch-up


One area of the InterWebz I’ve recently delved into is Podcasts. I try to listen to them as do my half-assed-housekeeping-hour on Mondays. Last Monday I listened to Marley Bird’s YarnThing Podcast when she interviewed knitting writer Rachel Herron. At one point she talks about being used to projects turning to crap! She says:

“By the time I finish a novel or a book or an essay I know that it’s not perfect anymore. Coz when you start out a project it’s going to be perfect. You know that – that’s your  intention: it’s to create a perfect project. And along the way it goes to crap!… And you get to the end and you know it’s no good. And it’s really easy to forget, while you’re fixing something, that You Did It…”

I thought this was a fantastic insight and it resonated with me as something I’ve experienced so many times in so many aspects of my life, be it Architecture or crafting or – dare I say it – even parenting. Sometimes the anticipation of a project turning out less than the perfect thing we hope for prevents us from attempting the project at all. It is very freeing to accept that a project will not be perfect. It will have compromises and changes and even errors. It will be as good as we can make it. And it will be less than we imagined. But!!! It will be more than the nothing we make if we don’t even try.

StashDown / Lacealong2012 / 12in12

My cake of Ivy Brambles Romantica Merino Lace currently weighs 72g, which means I have knit 100m in the past week. This is going a lot slower than I expected – I had thought I would have it done by the end of January. As is reflected by the higher meterage used,  I have been more dogged about knitting at any opportunity this week, though I’m still nowhere near the intended 40m/day. I’m now on the sixth repeat of the blossom chart – only two more to go before I start the edging. I’ve just got to keep plugging away at it.

Gems from the Web

I am the surprise star in this week’s selection for Gems from the Web – or, at least, my teapot cosy is! My upstream pal in Knitmas last year was Evin, a.k.a. FreckledPast; and as part of the jam-packed pamper present she sent my way was a fabulous teacosy. She shares the pattern for the teacosy on her blog.

Knitmas took place while I was on an inadvertent blogging hiatus. In fairness to the fabulous spoiling I got from Evin, and all the effort she went to, I have the perfect excuse now to blog all about it, even if Knitmas seems like a distant memory.

Bizarre Inscription

A coded message on the parcel or obfuscation to thwart detection?

What a haul was inside: yarn, sweets, home-made treats.

Delicious treat of peanuts coated in salt, rosemary and spices; all in a hand-made origami box

A clue to the sender's identity? Or a red-herring?

Not being able to guess who my upstream-pal was had me driven demented!

It fits! It fits! And I love it!

Since I’m bringing you up-to-date with events that happened last Christmas, the fact that you’re about to see Christmas trees in the next bit won’t seem so incongruous.

Oh Christmas Tree!

Which brings me to…


I’ve been very shy about revealing anything I’ve been doing under this heading. The course is coming to an end in two weeks so over the next three posts I’ll dwell on this area more than I have been.

Before Christmas, @MaryLD showed us a clever technique for making blocks based on triangles. One of the trickier areas of piecing is if fabric is cut on the bias since it has a tendency to stretch and distort. This can make working with triangles a PITA.

Mary showed us how to sew two squares together with two diagonal seams that are off-set from the central corner-to-corner diagonal by the seam allowance. You then cut the corner-to-corner diagonal to create two blocks of two diagonals and no sewing of bias seams.

Did that make sense?

Mary had a pattern suggestion we could follow to make a mini-quilt – a place-mat, really. You can see the final pieced-top on the right below.

Two pieced tops

But there were squares left over. After trying a few permutations, I decided on the arrangement on the left above.

This was a really fun exercise and I will try this method again. These two tops still need wadding, backs, quilting and borders.

Nike+ GPS

I’m at the end of a 12-week coaching programme that I set up with Nike+. I chose their 5k programme to keep me running over the Winter. I was somewhat taken aback when one of the runs was as long as 11k (6miles).  That’s the longest I’ve ever run and it was such a great feeling to be able to achieve that. I will set up the 10k coaching programme next for Beginner level, to start next Tuesday. I can see, though, that the programme includes some 16k runs! Yikes!


8 Responses to “Week 5: Christmas Catch-up”

  1. knitinc Says:

    Love your tree quilts! Gorgeous! And Evin really did spoil you with her lovely Knitmas parcel.

  2. sheknitupthat Says:

    So impressed with your running, I wasn’t able to keep it up, got bored with repeating the first c25k week so much :/ Seriously love that Xmas tree!!

  3. “One Size Fits Most” Tea Cosy | Spring Stitches Says:

    […] sharing a pattern I made up for a tea cosy that fits most teapots. When I was recently looking for a gift for a friend who desired a tea cosy, I only encountered sized patterns for specific-shaped teapots. This was to […]

  4. Knitmas 2013 | EvinOK Says:

    […] It was a lovely holiday season and my third year in Knitmas. You can read about my other Knitmas experiences here (2011) and here (2011). […]

  5. Jane Richmond’s Rathtrevor Fingerless Gloves | EvinOK Says:

    […] 2011 (my first year in the gift exchange), I knit a tea cosy for D and she wrote all about it here. This belated post is about Knitmas 2012 since I obviously can’t write about 2014 since […]

  6. What I gave for Knitmas 2014 - EvinOK Says:

    […] Curious about my previous year’s Knitmas antics? For Knitmas 2014, I sent a parcel to Carol Feller (no pressure there, right?). I received an amazing parcel including an Age of Brass and Steam from Regina. For Knitmas 2013, I designed and knit a cowl for Kathy. I received a parcel with orange fingerless gloves from Catherine. For Knitmas 2012, I knit fingerless gloves and sewed a tea cosy for Gráinne. For Knitmas 2011 (my first year in the gift exchange), I designed and knit a cupcake tea cosy for D and she wrote all about it here. […]

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