Sock Madness Finalist

At the moment, I'm finishing off some translation jobs, doing some admin while watching some women's football, relaxing my fingers - insofar as that is possible while typing - because squeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee... I'm a Sock Madness Finalist!!! I will be representing Team MM tomorrow in the final Sock Face-Off. At 7am local time, the pattern will drop and 26 knitters will battle it out for eternal glory.

I was such a happy bunny when I finished my Round 6 socks, and also Rounds 5 and 4, which I hadn't posted here. So, a quick recap:

Round 6 was the Swirlagon socks by Kirsten Hall. A super fun and challenging knit. It consists of pentagons on the heels and varying hexagons for the rest of the sock. Using provisional cast-ons for all the hexes and ending with a tubular bind-off, these don't have any ridges on the inside - but plenty of ends to work away! Even though it took me almost 4 days to knit these, I was first of the team!

Me and the Round 5 socks did not rea…

Round 4!

And then, before you know it, you have knit 3 rounds of socks, lol... Time has just taken me along for a walk and before I knew it, it was May.
In a nutshell:

Round 1: Demogorgon's Lair by Dots Dabbles. Third finisher! I was eager...

Round 2: Echoes by Liz Harris. I was the 5th knitter to finish in this round...

Round 3: Inky Madness by Susan Gehringer. 6th to finish!

These last socks almost did me in. The combination of lace and cables made me prick a hole in my finger, so I'm on a no-knitting diet until the next round... As this round has just ended, round 4 could start any day. Or it could be a few days... You never know with the Sock Madness...

I do have some adjustments to make to the round 3 socks, as they are too big and the toes don't really suit me... But that can wait for a bit. I also ordered some more sock yarn, because for some odd reason, I never have the type I want for the socks I'm going to knit. Go figure...

In the meantime, while not knitting (or spi…

Count-down to Sock Madness

While I am watching the Australian Grand Prix on Replay, other knitters are eyeing the Sock Madness Countdown Clock and frantically knitting on their qualifier socks... Today is the final day to either qualify for a team (you then have to finish a pair of socks according to specifications) or as a cheerleader (finish either one sock or two socks past the heel turn). This qualification period lasted 2 weeks, which is a good period to get properly warmed up for the competition.

To qualify, you also make a few specific pictures of the socks, and in this case, for the Smock Madness socks by Elizabeth White, it had to be clear how many 'big smocks' we knit on the leg, heel and foot. Hence the white contrasting yarn.

In the Dutch 'shadow' group, someone started with posting pictures of socks on the kitchen top. And of course, like the Stroopwafels, it took off across the board, and I also (cleaned my counter tops and) hoisted myself on top to take a picture.

I took a week to…

The finished hap

While eating lunch, consisting of toast with stinky cheese and with the doors to the living room closed (let's just say the kids are less enamoured with livarot cheese than I am), time for an update on the hap! Yes, it's been done for a while and yes, I've been wearing it as well, but something with life taking over and bla bla.

Two weeks ago, we had a glorious Saturday - the first one of the year, basically - and we decided to go and do a good garden Spring clean. And while we were at it, I got out the bamboo sticks and built a frame for my hap.

The frame building was the easy bit... I then had to string up all the points of the hap. And then I saw the frame could have been a bit bigger. Ach well, next time I want it blocked a bit bigger and tighter, I'll just have to use long-sized bamboo sticks only, as I was a bit limited to the length of the shorter ones this time.  
But it did the job! I rested it against the clothes line, where it would not be in the way and no …

Back on the blogging horse!!!

I was SHOCKED when I saw the date of my last post. Really??? Three-and-a-half years???
Not that I haven't done any crafting, as I've knit, crocheted, spun and sewed lots, but when you combine a move to a cool house with a huge garden, a family, a busy business - something falls by the wayside...
But it is such a shame not to have a place to put my stuff on show, apart from my Ravelry project pages! The desire to restart the blog was ignited by a short message on Facebook, inviting people to join a #sohapalong. A what?
Yup, my reaction exactly! And then I realised that I actually bought a book on Haps when I was on Shetland, had always planned to spin and knit one, but never got around to it. And as I had no projects on the needles (...), I decided to run up the stairs to my stash attic and dive in. Yup, enough brown to use as a base colour, and I decided to go for purples as a contrast... That would work!

The brown was probably a Frisian milk sheep, or something else. No idea.…

Where the Peeriewinkle goes a-dyeing

Who knew that dyeing was so much fun? I never really took the time to do dyeing, because hey, I know people who can do it so much better than me! And with the natural dyed yarns I saw, most of them were yellow, or a dirty colour of yellowy green. But, I also know you can achieve great result with trying and experience... and I am amazed at the things that some wool dye artists can do.

When I invited my spinning group over for a Sunday Fun Day, the idea was quickly coined to do some dyeing - with natural dyes! I ordered allum (mordant) and hydrosulphite (for the blue), plus some madder root, and then went scouring the area for plants to use. In my garden, I had sown some woad early this year, and the slugs were nice enough to leave me some. I had a handful to use, not much, but hopefully enough to give the wool a bit of colour...

In the end, I used tansy, madder root, woad, alchemilla, nettle, lichen and onion peel. And the results definitely made us wanting to dye more. We ran out of …

Tour de Fleece in pictures...

And again, time flies by.... In the meantime, I've started vlogging - more about that later - been on holiday and participated in the Tour de Fleece. As pictures say more than a thousand words, here's my TDF 2015!