Wednesday, 30 March 2011

More Decorating and Knitting

Knitwits Yarns

Another week since my last blog and you can entirely blame the decorating which is slow but steady. The sitting room/back passage is progressing but there are an awful lot of doors, which means lots of fiddly bits, door frames etc. I also decided the outside of the back door was in need of some tlc, which it has now had - 2 coats of tlc in fact.

In the meantime we have no telly in the sitting room so keep finding teenage sons lounging on our bed watching telly there. I know you shouldn't have a TV in your bedroom but, we do!

Off home shortly - second coat on door frames and doors - deep joy.

Monday, 21 March 2011

Decorating is Progressing!

Knitwits Yarns

Have just realised it's been exactly one week since my last entry - shame on me - apologies - decorating is time consuming and is progressing.

One week on I have finished all bathrooms and am eagerly awaiting new bathroom floor on Friday.

Yesterday I started on the sitting room which initially involved sorting the boys' bookcase on the landing in order to move books from sitting room (where the book situation is getting beyond a joke) to the landing. The M-in-L is away on holiday but doing a charity car boot on her return so will come home to find one very large box of books in her spare room. Going through the boys books is like going through their history - quite emotional at times - couldn't bring myself to chuck out some of their books but have cleared 3 shelves.

Knitting is progressing slowly - blanket is slowly getting smocked. Sock is slowly growing. You get the picture.

I've now organised the dates for our next "Learn to Knit" nights to coincide with the start of the summer term. Details are on the website - here. If you would like any more details or, indeed, would like to book just email me at or ring in on (01736) 367069 or pop into the shop! The format is the same as the last one, ie we start by learning to cast on (there are a myriad of different methods), then knit a garter stitch scarf, then knit a stocking stitch shrug (with pattern reading thrown in) and, finally, a cabled bag made from Cornish Organic Wool. The class is very laid back and relaxed but you learn a lot. On occasions the last class was just silent in deep concentration! If you've every wanted to knit - now's your chance!

Monday, 14 March 2011

Knitting and Painting

Knitwits Yarns

So I started on the bathroom yesterday and - as is my wont - have quickly become obsessed with the idea of painting every surface. Have no doubt this will wear off in time but, so far, have tidied out one bathroom cabinet (one whole sack of rubbish - very satisfying) (one more to do when furniture goes back in), sanded all the loose and flaking paint (realised that the builders didn't bother to seal the plaster - note to builders - if you don't seal plaster in a bathroom, after about 9 years the paint will start to flake and will be really, really flakey when homeowner finally decides to do something about it 3 years later), sealed the plaster, washed down all surfaces (simultaneously horrifying myself about the depth of filth behind bathroom cabinets), applied first coat of paint to radiator and woodwork.

Also sealed plaster around velux windows fitted in other bathrooms c 10 years ago. (We have friends visiting at Easter who may well pass out on discovering the plaster around these Velux's [is the plural of Velux, Veluxii?] is now painted - it's been a topic of conversation every Easter for the past 6 or 7 years.)

This morning I applied first coat of white "Kitchen and Bathroom" paint (for extra washability) to sealed plaster areas.

Tonight I plan to apply first "proper" coat to bathroom walls and ceilings and (time permitting) to areas around the Veluxii.

Am pleased to report that painting, decorating and generally getting organised is catching. FB has just informed me that he's putting the side back on our bath e'en as I type - it's been off and gently leaning against the bath struts for about - 00h - 8 years (or, in fact, from the time when we had the new shower fitted when we moved the kitchen [which was 8 years ago]).

T has also started tidying his bedroom. The tidy half is now referred to as "Switzerland", the untidy half is "Afghanistan". There was a bit of a ruckus at the border yesterday when an electric guitar, its case and cable went from Switzerland to Afghanistan mode but order was later resumed without bloodshed or the need for tear gas.

One day my entire house will be "Switzerland" - if only for one minute when I've locked all the men and cats outside.

Knitting has been restricted - painting and knitting is a physical impossibility - but managed one row of smocking on blanket (yes, I'm smocking a blanket and it's really quite pretty) and half turned a heel on a sock in front of the goggle box last night. No goggle box tonight = no knitting.

Saturday, 12 March 2011

New Shades of Old Yarns

Knitwits Yarns

Just a couple of new shades of old(ish) yarns to bring you up to date on. New shades of King Cole Haze:

and new shades of the perennially popular Mirage:

Both are lightweight DK's, which knit as standard DK's.

Tomorrow I start re-decorating the house! Have suddenly got to the point where, after 12 years in our house and having not decorated some of the rooms since the day we moved in, I can't stand it any longer and realise that no-one else is going to magically do the work. I start with our bathroom and progress from there. I'm sacrificing my knitting time here so I hope the men appreciate it! Will take lots of pics - if I have the courage to show the "before" pics!

Wednesday, 9 March 2011

More New Things

Knitwits Yarns

New summer yarns continue to arrive apace so, clearly, my yarn buying embargo has come to a swift end! Mainly because - in my own defence - we desperately needed some new cotton and other summer stuff as the incredibly popular Stylecraft Kon Tiki has been discontinued and there is something of a worldwide cotton crisis so I though I'd better get some in early before all the cotton disappears to China (which is, apparently, where it's all headed). We decided, in true Knit Wits style, that if you're going to have a cotton you should have a really good quality one so we've now got in stock Memphis from Adriafil. It's pure Egyptian cotton and has a lovely feel - soft but crisp - and is going to knit up fantastically - I just know it. Also comes in a huge array of colours - we have 15. Here is the full pic of them all:

In fact, not them all as there are clearly some lurking in the background. Click here for the full page.

Noro have also brought out a new cotton rich DK yarn (yay - most Noro yarns are Aran or 4ply) called Aya. As you'd expect from Noro, the colours are fantastic and it's a really beautiful yarn and, being 55% cotton 35% silk and 15% wool, perfect for summer garments:

And, finally for now, we have the new Giada from Adrifail. This is a cotton rich DK yarn with tiny, little sequins woven into the yarn as well to give a subtle sparkle and shimmer. This is the yarn I've been rattling off a shawl in and the shawl is now finished so I just need to photograph it and get the pattern written up and it'll be a free pattern with 3 balls purchased (shawl for just under £20.00 - not bad!) and it would be perfect for summer weddings:

Today I started sock number 2 at the hairdresser waiting for my highlights to highlight - think the other women there though I was one sandwich short of a picnic - either that or they were wishing they'd brought their knitting too?!

Saturday, 5 March 2011

Knitted Chairs Anyone?

Knitwits Yarns

One of my new knitters from the autumn knitting class - Helen - has pointed me in the direction if Knitted Chairs! You too could produce such masterpieces as Olivia:



and my personal favourites - Pip and Pen:

All of these glorious chairs can be found at Melanie Melanie does all the knitting herself so is clearly one talented lady. I'm starting to look at my clapped out recliner in a whole new light .................... - although FB may well kill me if I suggest the idea (!)

Helen - who pointed us in the direction of knitted furniture has a blogsite here - - and if you go to Feb 25th you'll see her first ever knitted sock - c/o our knitting class. We're waiting for the second sock, Helen!

We have new colours in Marble Chunky and Marble DK and they would make fantastic chair covers! New chunky:

and new DK:

My shawl is coming on apace - watch this space!

Thursday, 3 March 2011

To Lincoln and Beyond

Knitwits Yarns

I mentioned we were off on a long car journey and we did, indeed, go all the way to Lincoln. Penzance is a long way from anywhere but it's a heck of a long way from Lincoln. We shared the driving and I knitted a sock so, in theory, it's a sock to Lincoln and a sock home - if one was so inclined. Stupidly, I've now displayed said sock in the shop without photographing it. I'll remedy that asap. We did, however, manage some (although pathetically few) pics of Lincoln - mostly in the dark to and from restaurants:

Lincoln Cathedral is a truly spectacular building and (for the record) I once read the Lesson in there!:

On the first night we ate at the top of Steep Hill - it's not called that for nothing:

On Saturday we went to the Lincolnshire Aviation Heritage Centre and saw one of the last few remaining Lancaster bombers - boy are they big! And they seem so basic to have had such a major impact on the last World War. It's hard to get an idea of the true size of these beasts but here is T standing in front of her (for she is a "she"):

It was a fascinating place and I learnt about Operation Manna at the end of WWII when the Allies (still under strict rationing) dropped 11,000 tons of food to the starving in Holland, with the agreement of the German occupying forces. I'd never heard of Operation Manna before - truly astonishing.

Afterwards there was a certain rugby match to watch (in the University bar) followed by the compulsory curry! (Thank God we won)

Throughout we were accompanied by FB's baby sister, who is studying for her MA at Lincoln University. It's always slightly astonishing when someone you remember being born turns out to be rather brilliant (she got a First), rather beautiful, annoyingly skinny and doing an MA! Here she is with the boys (her nephews!!):

(Why are these kind of photos always taken next to cars just as you're about to leave?!)

NEW YARN on the site is James Brett's new, fabulous Monsoon. Aran weight, 30% wool and, colourwise, a cross between Rico Poems and Noro - this is going to be incredibly popular and is selling well. Buy now or put on your list of "must do" projects! It knits as a standard Aran but there are some fab patterns too:

We've also had a delivery of Katia Rizos scarf yarn! This is going fast, fast, fast so buy now to truly avoid disappointment. This yarn, like Can Can, has been ordered for months and finally made it in to stock - heaven knows when it'll be back:

Tonight I'm starting a new shawl - yes, I know I'm supposed to be finishing things (second sock, blanket, Angel cardigan) but this new shawl is calling and will not be delayed.