I've been trying to learn lots of new things crafty-wise, as well as finishing projects and thinking up new ones. Yes, I always have waaay too many ideas for my very limited time. It's a common problem. If I'm honest I also have waaay too much yarn to use in my very limited time...I think the two things might be connected. Continuing my New Year resolution to be more disciplined in finishing projects, I am not doing too badly.
I've completed two garments already this year - one I was very happy with, the other, reasonably happy.
The first was this one - the Rose top from a Rowan Filigree Crochet book (sorry, but does the word filigree always remind anyone else of that episode of Fawlty Towers where Manuel has to get rid of his pet rat?! Maybe it's just me...). Anyway, I have been thrilled to bits with the way this top came out. I made less motifs than specified for the size small in the pattern - one row less on both the bottom of the body and the sleeves, and the resulting garment is absolutely perfect for me fit-wise. I also love the beauty of the motifs - so pretty! The only problem is it is still far too cold to consider wearing this!
The shape of this garment is really very simple - it's basically a series of rectangles, one each for front and back and then again for sleeves and collar - no shaping whatsoever, but it still looks great on. This has given me the confidence to have a go at designing and knitting my own sweater. I'm currently still in the stage of planning this, so it's only a partially formed idea at the moment. I'm very excited about it though - I've wanted to have a go at coming up with my own knitting design from scratch for ages, but have never been brave enough to try as I always thought I would have to have at least some shaping in the sleeve head to create anything remotely flattering. I might post some more about this soon if I can get my idea off the page and into reality - watch this space!
The other thing I finished was this striped sweater pattern. Sadly no photos of the completed garment yet, I just haven't had a chance! I did learn a few tricks for finish this though, which made me happy. The most useful thing I learnt was to do mattress stitch for the seams. I've never had anyone to teach me this, and I've always used back stitch for knitted seams before, which works fine and usually looks ok from the outside, but does tend to result in quite bulky seams, which I don't like. I've been making a concerted effort to brush up my knitting know how and skills and have found some really useful tips and tricks online. Maybe I will do a post collating some of these soon.