Wednesday, 18 February 2009

Knitting chat in the workplace

I knitted these three swatches last night. The turquoise in DB Donegal Tweed Chunky. The red is DB cashmerino chunky and the grey is the Rowan Purelife British Breed Wool. All were on 10.5 Denises and all are roughly the right guage for the Sylvi cardigan.
When I got into work this morning I gave them to my worthy deputy, Martyn, and asked him which he thought I should use. He looked at them for about 2 seconds and then said "that one" holding up the grey. He then gave them back to me.

I sat down at my desk (at right angles to his) and put the three swatches in front of me. The conversation continued thus -

Me: I know what you mean. It's got nice stitch definition. The turquoise one is a bit random.
Martyn: Yeah
Me: I do still need to block them all to see how the gauge changes.
Martyn: Mm
Me: The cashmerino also has good stitch definition and it would be a lot lighter. So the finished thing would probably be lighter.
Me: To buy the wool for the purelife at the cheapest place online with a 10% KCG discount would still be £73.08.
Martyn: What? How much?
Me: 73 pounds odd.
Martyn: I guess you'd probably pay that for a trendy designer type cardigan at somewhere like...someplace.
Me: That's true. Also in the purelife it would weigh 1.4kg. Wow, that's a lot.
Martyn: ...just assume I'm saying yes when you pause.
Me: I guess that includes a hood and long sleeves.
Me: But then with the lighter feel of the cashmerino it would probably be a bit lighter.
Martyn: Uh
Me: But probably still more than a kilo.
(New character) Jac: What are you two talking about?
Me: Which yarn I should knit this cardigan out of.
Jac: What's martyn's opinion?
Martyn: Mm

I can't believe Martyn is leaving - who am I going to talk to about knitting in the future?

Tuesday, 17 February 2009

Hoorah for Igors!

I got an excellent swap parcel through yesterday from cherryred on Ravelry. It was part of the Igor Swap for the Seamstress Guild Group. So many brilliant things!

First up we have some beautiful crocheted fingerless gloves, some gorgeous sock yarn and excellent knee socks. We had that in common so I sent her some too.
Then there is an awesome felted soap - I've read about these but never actually seen one. I am going to try it tonight. Lots of yummy chocolate - there was more but it didn't make it home. Felted fingers (this *is* an igor swap!), a bookmark and some beautiful stitchmarkers.
Here they are closer up - look at the little feet!

All in all it is an amazing parcel - I just hope she likes the one she has got from me! I am worried it won't hold up in comparison.

Thanks for the kind words about knitters block...I have been trying to swatch for Sylvi and haven't had much luck. I dropped in to John lewis and bought a few trial balls to swatch with. They are all a little bit more expensive than I was hoping for but I'm not getting guage with cheaper stuff. It needs to be chunky and I'd prefer wool. Any suggestions?

Sunday, 15 February 2009

A terrible confession

Before I get going I forgot to post the rest of my pics. In essence they were the ones of what I'd bought while shopping. There were essentially quite a few necklaces and these amazing cushion covers:
The man who made them was really interesting and unlike the 'my mother made this' type sales pitch he had pics of himself leading workshops and so on so he actually did know how they were made. You can see absolutely all the photos here or the more friendly, abbreviated set here.

It's hard to believe that egypt was only about 10 days ago. For instance, let's look at what has happened to me this week...

MONDAY - First day back at work. Find out I am not being made redundant, but that 3 others are.
TUESDAY - Two members phone up to complain about different things. One tells me I am lower than a traffic warden and a jobsworth.
WEDNESDAY - Stomach starts playing up again (same as happened in egypt) so in pain and frequently in bathroom.
THURSDAY - Day at home in bed with hot water bottle on tummy. Sidekick from work phones me up to tell me he's had a job interview and they've offered him the job. Asks for advice. Weird situation fo not wanting him to go but thinking he definitely should.
FRIDAY - Stomach still hurting. Sidekick tells me he's decided not to go when get to work. Me and Director spend hour basically convincing him he should because our org is so unstable. By end of lunch he's been offered more money and decided to go. In the afternoon Director tells me we won't be replacing him - which gobsmacks me. Brief freak out as means I need to cancel most of my projects and just do low-level admin for rest of year. Only redeeming feature of the day is babysitting Pete - who is the perfect antidote to any stress.
SATURDAY - Wake up feeling rough. Pooch has got me lovely flowers for Valentine but go back to bed after about an hour.
Supposed to be going to dinner and opera with pooch but feel very sick and exhausted so miss it. Awake for about 4 hours total.
SUNDAY - Pooch made me eat potato and leak soup for lunch. Yuck.

So all in all it hasn't ben a great week. My job title is Head of Professional Development and my scope is making people chartered and then supporting their careers and maintaining their professional knowledge with CPD. My first year was taken up with a big review of the chartership side of things and now there are all sorts of CPD projects due to launch within the next month or two, and I have to sit on them all. Not only that - I have to do all the day-to-day stuff which is not going to be at all interesting. The only positive thing about this is that my job is now relatively safe and the only remaining risk is if the whole org goes under. But still, that's not such a good 'positive' considering how boring it is going to be.

Now so far in this post I have managed to put off saying what my 'terrible confession' is. The thing is...this is so embarrasing...but I think I have knitters block. I just can't seem to get enthused about anything. I've been spending a lot of time working on my hexagon crochet blanket simply because it's so easy and I don't have to really think about it. I've tried to start a couple of bigger things but then I wimp out. I don't really know what to do. I want to do a kauni cardi, an intarsia jumper with a motif, flame socks...and I just can't get started on any of it. Wa!

In the meantime, I have knocked out a few breasts for the SkipNorth/KCG charity knit thing. It's the pattern from the Lactation Consultants of Great Britain (no seriously) and is on ravelry here. They take about 90 mins each so necessitate no commitment at all.
Plus we've got people coing round to watch the football with Pooch later and it amuses me to leave them lying about for them to see. Juvenile, I know, but considering my week I think it's allowed.
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