Summer Break

Hello Everyone!
I'm on holiday since yesterday: two long months without teaching, but I'll have plenty of time for practicing for myself, knitting, spending time with friends and family, reading, "redecorating" my apartment (basically painting some furnitures, make some crafty projects and hanging a few pictures...), sleeping, eating...in short, seeing la vie en rose!

Bonjour à tous!
Je suis en vacances depuis hier: deux long mois sans enseigner, mais j'y gagne plein de temps pour travailler pour moi, tricoter, passer du temps avec des amis et ma famille, bouquiner, "redécorer" mon appart' (en fait c'est juste repeindre quelques trucs, en bricoler d'autres et accrocher quelques cadres...), dormir, manger....bref, voir la Vie en Rose!

I'm also taking a little blogging break: so no blog post for a few weeks, but I'll keep following avidly yours of course!

J'en profite pour faire une petite pause aussi ici: pas de billet pendant quelques semaines, mais je continuerai à suivre vos blogs avec assiduité bien évidemment!
Talk to you soon!
Happy July to you!

A bientôt! Profitez bien du mois de Juillet!


Stripes Obsession...

Happy Sunday to you!
I'm currently totally obsessed by stripes, tees, summer sweater, striped tees or striped summer sweaters. I have been browsing Ravelry's database for days in order to find le pattern, but I just can't decide on what to cast-on. And I would like to use the yarn I already have in stash rather than buying. This is a bit challenging as well (why am I so desperately reasonable??)

Until I find my next project, I'm knitting socks. Again. Destashing. Sock knitting is somewhat relaxing as you don't have to think about it too much. I'm working on both gusset decreases now, so I'd better hurry making up my mind on the next pattern.... Having no project on the needles is a terrifying idea for a almost-on-holiday-knitter! ;)

                                                                                                                                 Happy knitting to you!


Real Monkeys

How are you Dear Readers? Summer is finally here, and it feels good. The summer vacation will soon be here too, I can't wait!
Today's FO is a pair of socks I made for a friend's birthday. She is a knitter as well, but not (yet!) a sock knitter. She needed a warm pair of socks right? For her, I chose easy care and sturdy Regia yarn, paired with the Monkey sock pattern. I was a bit worried about the fit as she has smaller feet than me, but she provided accurate measures, and luckily they fit her!

Pattern: Monkey by Cookie A. The original pattern was published on Knitty.com for free. You can also find an improved version with different sizing options here. It's also part of the Knit.Sock.Love. book.

Yarn: Schachenmayr nomotta Regia Uni / Solid 4-ply / 4-fädig, 01980 (blue jeans) 68 grams.

Needles: Addi Turbo Circulars, 80cm, 2.75mm

About the Pattern: After five pairs of no-purl monkey, I had to give a try to the original isn't it? I was surprised by how both look so different: a few purl stitches more or less can really change a pattern. Even if I enjoyed knitting these, I prefer the no-purl version. I'm still happy I gave a try to the original though, as it's a classic must-knit if I dare say.

About the Yarn: As usual when it's a gift, I used Regia. I love it. I love it so much, that I have very few balls left (actually, only worth 3 pairs of socks :s)

I replaced all the skk's by the LK2tog (see this post if you missed it), and honnestly, this way of doing left leaning decrease is just awesome!

Wishing you a lovely Sunday!


The Most Favorite Beret Ever....

After my Veyla mitts, I wanted a matching color beret to wear with my new silver grey winter coat. I know it's almost summer and I won't have the chance to wear this set before several long months, but it's the kind of thing you have to plan in advance isn't it? At least, I won't be late this year. Maybe is it the begining of a virtuous circle and I'm finally turning into an organized knitter? There's still some hope for next Christmas' presents!

Yarn: Fleece Artist Casbah, Silver Grey, 86 grams.

Needles: Addi Turbo Circular (40cm & 80cm). The coating on my needles is getting off.... Have you ever experienced such a thing on your addis? In France, we don't have the Skacel Life Time guarantee as in the United States.

About the Yarn: Casbah is a little heavier than the usual fingering yarn I use, so my beret came out a little bigger, slouchier and drapier as my previous beret. I could have used 2.75mm needles, but I still love it!

About the Pattern: Do I need to say again how perfect it is?

Mods: Lenghtened the brim (24 rounds instead of 20) I think I prefer my beret with the wider brim. You can't imagine how incredibly comfy it is. If you never tried a folder brim, you really, really have to, I will probably never go back. Other than that, I followed exactly the pattern for the larger size of the beret. I like my berets to be slouchy.

Happy Sunday to you!


About SSK...

After the original-and-not-so-satisfying SSK, 
The better "improved" ssk
The "sounds-awesome-but-never-tried" SYTK
I want to share my enthousiasm with the LK2tog.
Après l'initial-et-pas-si-satisfaisant SSK,
Le mieux-mais-pas-encore-ça ssk "amélioré"
Le "a-l'air-super-mais-jamais-essayé" SYTK
J'aimerai partager avec vous mon enthousiasme pour le LK2tog.

Random picture of my latest socks when they were still a small work in progress. ;)

My friend Patrizia, told me about it. Discovered by Rililie, it's the ultimate way to perform the exact opposite of the k2tog.
In my opinion, it's perfection. I will never ever use ssk and it's other siblings anymore: LK2tog is the perfect matching partner to K2tog. I'm totally fond of this new technique. By the way, Rililie's blog and designs are fabulous!
Thank you so much Rililie for this huge improvement in my knitting!

Mon amie Patrizia, m'a parlé de ça il y a quelques temps. Découvert par Rililie, c'est le nec plus ultra pour réaliser l'exact opposé du k2tog (2 m. ens. end).
A mon humble avis, c'est la perfection. Je ne reviendrai plus jamais en arrière: LK2tog est le partenaire idéal de K2tog. J'adore cette nouvelle technique. Et puis le blog et les patrons de Rililie sont absolument fabuleux! Si vous ne la connaissez pas encore, je vous invite à aller y faire un tour!

Happy Sunday to you!


Hedera-esque again...

Today is the first day of June, and the weather is getting warmer. Slowly but surely, we are heading to Summer. I just can't wait!
You must think that I stick to my comfort zone as I only knit patterns I have already knitted in the past. That's completly true. It's the third time that I knit this version of the Hedera Socks. I like knitting lacy socks, but I don't like wearing them when they are too lacy. This version is the perfect compromise. If I had listen to myself, I think I would have been able to knit a sixth pair of Monkey, but la variété est le sel de la vie right? So here are some Hederaesque socks...Again...

Pattern: Hedera Socks, by Cookie A. Link to my Ravelry project page.

Yarn: Schachenmayr nomotta Regia Uni, Solid 4-ply, blue. 76 grams.

Needles: Addi Turbo Circular, 2.5 mm, 80 cm.

CO 64. Twisted 1x1 rib for 14 rounds.
K one round

For Right Sock:
R1:K1tbl,P2,yo,ssk,K1,K2tog,yo,P2 K1tbl, K to end
R2:K1tbl, P2, K5, P2 K1tbl, K to end
R3:K1tbl,P2,K1,yo,sl1,K2tog,psso,yo,K1,P2K1tbl, K to end
R4:K1tbl, P2, K5, P2K1tbl, K to end

For Left Sock:
Change the stitch marker’s place to one stitch to the left (so that the lace pattern “sits” on two K ribs)
R1: K until last 11,K1tbl,P2,yo,ssk,K1,K2tog,yo,P2 K1tbl
R2: K until last 11,K1tbl, P2, K5, P2 K1tbl
R3: K until last 11, |Ktbl, P2, K1, yo, sl1, K2tog, psso, yo, K1, P2] K1tbl
R4:K until last 11,K1tbl, P2, K5, P2 K1tbl

For both socks, work favorite heel and toe. For a neater edge, I knitted each stitch on the side of the lace pannel through the back loop.

Have a lovely knitting week!


Sweet WIP

Can't help myself, I had to cast on another Sweet Little Nothing Beret...

Once the twisted rib folded brim completed, the lacy cable stitch pattern is an addictive reward....

It's Mother's Day here in France. Wishing you a sweet sweet Sunday!


The Ugly Truth...

Behind the word Destashing....
Sometimes destashing goes nicely: I was very happy with my very first Ombre Basket, and this is why I decided to make a second one with all my remaining balls of cotton/acryl blend...I lined up all the colors, and I thought it was harmonious. Black to turquoise, going through silver grey and pink. Unfortunately, once crocheted, it wasn't as pretty as I'd imagined.

Pattern: Ombre Basket by Elizabeth Trantham. I love all her designs!

Yarn: Bergère de France, Coton Fifty in 13 different colors (one ball or less each). I used 9 colors for the not-so-ombre effect, 4 differents for the bottom of the basket.

Crochet: Clover Crochet, Soft Touch, 4.5mm

About the Pattern: The pattern is very well written and easy to follow, with plenty of pictures.

About the Yarn: I quadrupled the yarn (the pattern calls for worsted weight yarn, but I was using fingering weight)

The medium pink and the turquoise are popping too much. And to top it all, my basket is all wonky because I made unintentional increases/decreases at each end of every rounds... I will never dare to gift it to someone (even someone I don't like)
But you know what is the worst? The bottom. I used all my scraps, and as expected, it is horrible. I mean, Really. Hideous. I can't decide if it's worse on my blog or at home. I'll show you a very very small pic, ok? Please, be sure to sit down before vewing this.
Are you ready?

At least, it's still usable. (I threw it in the back of my wardrobe and for the moment, it contains... nothing)
It goes straight into my Gallery of Disappointment!
At least I destashed a lot and my yarn drawers are lighter.
At least, I learned a good lesson... 
"I will not be a reckless yarn addict, otherwise I will regret it. Sooner than later." (I should copy this fifty times...)

 Happy Sunday Everyone!


Leftovers, you make me crazy!

Happy Sunday to you! It's very busy at work at the moment, and I have not as much time as I'd like for knitting. However, I'm trying to destash as much as possible, and knit exclusively from my stash for the moment.  I don't want to keep so much yarn in my drawers, so I want to make some place before allowing myself to buy some more.

Here's a little selection of the pretty projects I came across these past few days, via blogs or Ravelry:

Juicyknits' Paris Sweater

Tubularity by Martina Behm discovered via Jody's Blog

Hexagon Pattern from Crochet in Color. Liz is the very talented and generous designer of the Ombre Basket as well!

Colorblock Bias Blanket on the Purlbee's blog. I think I will use up all my HosltGarn leftovers to make a stole version of this blanket.

And to use up every single remaining yards of your favorite yarn; here are the most adorable little hearts in the world! Boho Hearts by Sandra. It's impossible you don't fall immediately in love after seeing those cuties.

And you dear Readers? What are your favorite patterns or pattern ideas to knit your leftovers?

Happy Knitting to you!


Saint Patrick's Day Socks

Hiya! How are you? How is the weather like at your place? It's guetting cold and rainy here...So this means till plenty of occasion to wear handknit socks!
I knitted quite a lot lately, I'm in a sock phase again I guess!

Pattern: No Purl Monkey by CraftyPancakes, the little sister to the original Monkey by Cookie A. I prefer this version for the shameful reason that I don't like purling.
Yarn: Schachenmayr Nomotta Regia Uni, Solid 4-pl, in what we French people call Vert Anglais (I think.) English Green.

Needles: Addi Turbo Circular 2.75mm

About the Pattern: Well, what can I say? When you knit a pattern for the fifth time, it means you like it a little right? I think I could knit these socks for ever and ever....Sorry, it might get boring for you Dear Readers, but it seems I can't get enough of them. My only regret is that they are lacy, therefore, not suitable for men socks.

About the Yarn: This yarn was part of a bargain lot I bought a few years ago. I'm currently trying to reduce my stash (how often do you hear me saying that?) I think I love/hate this color. I love some greens, but not this one. However, it reminds me of Saint Patrick's Day... And even if I'm not particulary linked to this day, this year's was particularly unexpected and surprising, in a nice way, I guess... Anyway, it was still difficult to picture this color faithfully, and I had to use a little bit of photoshop's magic to make it work ;)
More pictures of these on my Ravelry project page.

Mods: No mods other than my usual longer heel flap to fit my high instep. I wish I had used 2.5mm needles though. I don't know why, but this pair of Monkey came out a little too big even if I knit them exactly as the previous ones (same needles, yarn and number of pattern repeats) My row gauge is slightly different than usual. How odd! They are still good enough to wear though thankfully! ;)

Have a lovely knitting week!