Liz Corke Knit Design

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March 15, 2013

Anthousai - Large

When Anthousai was test knitted I had two testers who were unfortunately unable to finish the test. So I’ve decided to give away two free copies to people who will knit it up and post projects on Ravelry.

The pattern has been tested and tech edited so there shouldn’t be any mistakes left (but please do let me know if you find any). There’s no time limit on this but I’d be greatful if you could finish in the next couple of months. You have a choice of the large or small size, written or charted instructions.

Good reviews are not compulsory – I’d prefer honest ones, but I love the pattern and I hope you will too. If you’re interested in a copy, please head over to my group and post on the thread here.

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I’m afraid I’ve not had much to share recently. I’m knitting away hard on my two new patterns. One is a gif t for my friend so I have to have the sample finished and photographed in two weeks time! We’re also rearranging the house quite a bit at the moment. Our desks and computers have been upstairs in our spare room, but we’re making a new desk downstairs in our living room and puting a nice sofa bed upstairs so it’ll be a library/spare room. All of my books will be staying up there and most of my craft gear too, so it should be a nice relaxing room.

I want to diversify my blog a bit. There’s not much point my posting on WIP Wednesdays when I don’t have anything I can show you  on the needles, but I don’t want to let the blog languish between new releases. I’m going to start blogging more about the other things that go on here hopefully.

My life isn’t that exciting – work, home, knit, repeat mostly, but I love baking and cooking so I’m going to try and post about new things I try in the kitchen. I also have a lot of cook books that I don’t use enough so this should give me a nudge in the right direction. I also occasionally do other crafts and I’ll be sharing them with you two – I made soap and candles as well as sewing monsters and making jewellery at Christmas.

I also want to put up so tutorials for techniques I use in my patterns, for example, beading for Storm Warning, or short rows and herring bone stitch that I’m using in one of my new patterns.

Yarn reviews are another thing I’d like to do. I love knitting with yarn from indie dyers and I’ll be sharing my experiences with you in the future, and hopefully introducing you to some new dyers.

February 20, 2013

It’s a very wet and miserable Wednesday over here today! But I’ve been making loads of progress with my knitting which is really exciting. My latest design is off the needles and I love it – although I’m about to cast on another one for my friend because I saw the most perfect yarn for her the other day. It hasn’t arrived yet, or I’d have a photo for you but it’s a gorgeous soft pinky grey. Plus the prototype has a couple of errors, so I’m keeping it for me. I’m hopefully going to get the new one into testing next week so if you’re interested feel free to stalk my group. Hopefully I’ll have come up with a name for it by then!

Anthousai is very nearly ready for publishing! The first of my testers posted her finished shawl this morning which was really exciting for me. One of my favourite things about designing is seeing what everyone else makes from my patterns. I’m going to dig out all my swatches and progress shots and next Wednesday I’ll tell you how I came up with the idea and set about it, then next Friday I’ll have a FO post for you at last.  If you want to be the first to know when my pattern is up, follow my facebook, twitter, Ravelry group or sign up for the newsletter!

My sock has a shocking lack of progress recently – the cuff isn’t as exciting as the rest! The facecloth hasn’t made much progress either, but my new shawl design is going well and I’m really excited about it. I’m doing so maky shawls right now, I decided to get an extra pair of 4mm needle tips and two more 30″ cables for my set.

I have a new shawl idea buzzing around in my head, but I really need to find some time to sit down with my stitch dictionaries to help it develope. I only have three right now, but I’d love to get more, so if you have a favourite stitch book please let me know!

Check out what everyone’s been up to with WIP Wednesday and Yarn Along with Tami and Ginny!

February 8, 2013

My second skein of yarn arrived on Wednesday Damsonand I really love it! It’s Eden Cottage Titus 4 Ply which is a gorgeous 30% silk/70% merino blend. I’ve already used this yarn in the autumn colourway for my Anthousai shawl and I really love working with it. This colourway is Damson, and it’s gorgeous. It’s also really tricky to photograph well! The colour is a really nice dark purple with hints of blue and red. I’ve already started knitting a new design and even though it’s only 30 rows in, I really love how it’s going.

This weekend I’m hoping to get more done on the shawl I showed you on Wednesday. It’s a sideways shawl and I’m onto the decreases now so it should be going faster with every repeat I do. I want to do a couple of phototutorials for this one too, so I might get them done this weekend if my photographer (aka husband) can be persuaded to help.

My Anthousai test seems to be going well and the pattern is off with my fantastic tech editor, so I’m really hopeful about getting the pattern published at the end of the month. I don’t really have much to do for this one any more apart from hoping for the weather to improve so that I can get on with the last few photos I want.

Have a great weekend everyone!

February 1, 2013

Friday is here! Only seven more hours till the weekend starts, and I have loads of plans for the weekend. Firstly though, I have a little moan because our internet isn’t working properly. The problem is really with the phone line – sometimes the dial tone will be all crackly so our internet is really slow, and other times it’s just gone and we have no internet at all! Fingers crossed we don’t lose internet completely over the weekend. The BT guy is coming on Monday to fix it, which is a relief because we’ve already been dealing with our dodgy internet for a week.

My plans for the weekend are much happier Regia Snowflake 4plythough! If the weather’s good we’ll take my new tripod out and get the last few photos of the shawl I finished last week done. I am going to be going over the shawl pattern and hopefully get it sent off to a tech editor. The shawl that I was blocking on Wednesday is have a rest just now, to see if the curling is going to get worse, but I’m hoping to get that back on the needles. Right now the top edge just wants to flop over and I think I can deal with that, so I’m just letting it relax to make sure it’s not going to decide to curl up completely. This one is going to be a gift for a friend, so I really want it to be perfect.

I’m also swatching another shawl. I came up with the Regia Snowflake 4ply Closeupdesign for this one a few months ago, and I’m really happy to get the chance to swatch it at last. Hopefully I’ll be able to find the perfect yarn for it over the weekend – right now, I’m thinking of looking for a nice red yarn for it. My new needles have finally arrived, and they are going to be really busy this weekend. I’ve ordered some 42″ chiagoo fixed circulars in 2.25 mm and 2.5 mm – perfect for magic loop! First I’m going to be casting on the cuffs for my fingerless gloves and then I’ll be starting some socks. This first pair are going to be for me – so mistakes won’t matter too much! I also really want to knit for my mum, but she isn’t really a scarf or shawl person, so I think socks might be the perfect answer for her. All the photos are of course of the yarn that will shortly be socks! I’m not linking up with Tami today, because I really haven’t finished anything.

January 18, 2013

My new website is finally live! I hope you all like it.  The design is mine, but my wonderful husband (with quite a bit of nagging!) did all the coding and clever stuff for me. The website and blog is on WordPress now, as we couldn’t get blogger to work nicely with our custom theme, but I really like how it’s all worked out. I am afraid you’ll need to update your rss feeds and readers though. The new RSS feed is here. The website is my FO for today, so please have a good look around and let me know what you think!

I’m really excited about this year. I have loads of ideas for new designs. The green shawl I was working on last year is done, and I’m about halfway through a smaller version of the shawl. The pattern is mostly written , and the charts are almost finished too. Hopefully I’ll get it in testing in February.

I have another shawl on the needles. This one is a bit different from my others as it has very little lace. It’s a sideways shawl, and is going to be a gift for a friend. After I’m finished that I have another few ideas charted and I’ll get to pick something new to work on!

One of the most exciting things happening this year, is that my husband will be graduating from uni. I’m really excited about it and I can’t wait for May. He’s been at uni for five years now, so this will be a huge change for us!

Check out Tami’s and see what everyone else has been up to!

Comments are fixed now!

October 17, 2012

The weather has been absolutely freezing up here recently. I think we’re in for a cold winter this year, which means plenty of opportunities for wearing cosy knits!

The cosy lacey tunic I’m working on hasn’t made much progress this week, no more that a row or two here and there. Most of my energy is being funneled into my shawl which I’m really hoping to finish soon. I have come to a dilema though. I’m not sure whether I whould rip back a bit and make it a slightly smaller one skein shawl, or continue going and let it be a big cosy shawl. The third option is to do both and offer two sizes, which I think is what I am leaning most towards right now. Let me know what you think!

My brother’s birthday present for me and my husband was John Lewis vouchers, so we went shopping yesterday and got this huge pile of yarn! The dark grey is for my husband. He’s getting a Basel hat, provided I can alter it a little to fit his 24″ head and he’s getting a pair of gloves, although I’m making them fingerless and possibly with a shorter cuff. The blue and light grey are for me. I’m making myself fingerless gloves and a hat too, but I’m working out my own colourwork pattern for them. I can’t find any hat patterns where I like both the pattern and the shape of the hat, so I’m taking matters into my own hands!

I’m reading again this week. I felt like I’d fallen out of the habit of reading, so to get myself back into it, I treated myself to a new book on the Kindle. I’m reading The Belgariad by David Eddings, and I’ve only just started the first book. I love this series and I’ve probably read it about five or six times in the last decade. It’s good to catch up with old friends from time to time.

This is my Year of Projects update again, as well as WIP Wednesday and Yarn Along with Tami and Ginny!

October 10, 2012

It’s freezing here this week. I’m planning my winter knitting – new gloves (maybe fingerless for me) and hats for me and my husband. I’m going to have a look at cowl patterns too.

My shawl is causing me a few problems – I seem to make exactly the same mistakes every few rows which is just careless! My cosy tunic is going well though. I’m about halfway through the lace portion of the tunic. I have no idea how the fit is going though. I think once I’m done the lace I’m going to put it on a lifeline and block it. While my blocked gauge is just about perfect for the pattern, my knitted gauge is a good few stitches smaller, so there’s no use in trying it on like this.

This is my Year of Projects update again, as well as WIP Wednesday and Yarn Along with Tami and Ginny!

October 3, 2012

I decided to combine my Year of Projects, WIP Wednesday and Yarn Along posts this week. I’ve been doing a lot of work on my designs that I can’t show you, so I decided to wait till I could be more interesting! I’m hoping for a special package in the post today. I have a set of KnitPro Interchangeable needles, which I really love using but they’re nickle plated and don’t react well with my skin. I don’t have a serious allergy – I’ve heard of some people that get itchy or numb hands and arms from their needles – but my needles do tarnish very quickly and feel sticky so I end up polishing them every day or two. I’ve ordered myself a Chiagoo 4mm fixed circular to try out. They’re stainless steel so shouldn’t cause me any problems, but I’ll let you know all about it when it gets here!

Steve still isn’t finished, but I’ve cast on something new. I’m knitting my monsters with 3.5mm needles and dk yarn at a very tight guage so that the stuffing doesn’t poke through and my shawl with 4mm needles and fingering weight yarn, so I’ve cast on something to give my hands a break. I’ve started my second lacey tunic in aran yarn. With the last one I went around and picked up the cast on stitches and added a moss stitch border which I really like, so this time I added the moss stitch border from the start. I also used a new (to me) cast on called the “Old Norwegian”. It’s a variant on the long tail cast on and I really like how it looks. I went up a couple of needle sizes for the cast on and it feels nice and stable yet stretchy.

I haven’t been reading much this week, but I did get a new book last week. It’s Cast On, Bind Off by Leslie Ann Bestor. I really love this book. The spiral binding is perfect for a craft book and saves you needing to prop it open, and the photos that guide you through the steps and really clear and easy to follow. This is, of course, where I learnt about the Old Norwegian cast on.

As always check out Tami’s and Ginny’s for more WIP Wednesdays and Yarn Alongs.

September 24, 2012

Well, this has been a pretty busy week for me, although I don’t have much knitting to show you. I’ve moved my blog again, sorry! Everything forwards you to here though, so you shouldn’t get lost (I hope!). I’ve decided that I’m just going to use my own name on my designs – which is what I was doing anyway – and that having to work Kingfisher Knits in complicated things for me, and why make things more complicated anyway? So the blog is now on blog.lizcorke.com and hopefully the website will be finished in a couple of weeks – it’s looking great so far! I’ve also got my facebook page up and running, so you can head over and like it, twitter is still running – if you’re on twitter, let me know – I need people to follow, and I’ve started up a Ravelry group here which desperately needs members!

Holly is finished! Isn’t she cute? I really like how she’s turned out, although it was tricky to get the feet on in the right place. She doesn’t balance very well either but that just adds character, as does the slightly off center tummy button! Poor Holly had pins in her bum to hold her up for the photos! I’m really happy with how she’s tuned out. Only six more monsters to go!

Steve has an arm now, to go with his body and single leg. It was too late last night to take photos though, so you’ll have to wait till Wednesday. Last week I mostly worked on my new design, until I realised that I’d completely forgotten about the symetry of it, and that it wasn’t going to work as I had it! I’ve started swatching a new idea, but then I ran out of the yarn I was using to swatch! Hopefully this week I’ll get the swatch done, the design redone, and get the shawl cast on again this week.

Year of Projects Lists 2012-13

Shawls

Semele
Buds of May
Colour Affection
Blue Jean Wrap
at least six more

Hats

Calorimetry
Autumn Vines Beret
Quick Cable Slouch Hat/Lotus Hat
Maybe a hat for my husband

Cowls

Two or three (or more) but no patterns picked yet

Vests

Vestpa (may change this one, since stockinette is not exciting)
Twisted stitch cables – Circe Vest
Cables –  Green Day

Jumpers/Tops

One with cables – maybe Collins or something similar.
One with stripes – Tubey
Lacey Tunic

Fingerless Gloves

A couple of pairs with cables – Swirling Gauntlets
New Era (I will get these right if it kills me!)

Extras

Use up cotton for face cloths – 88 yrds/574 yrds used!
Use up Stash – 137.4 yards used!
Do more colour work!

In Progress

Steve
Quentin
Daphne and Delilah
Dandelion on a Meadow Mystery KAL

Finished Projects

Holly
Young Einstein
Momijigari – gift
Ravellenics Shawl

September 17, 2012

I have a very colourful post for you today. I had a friend over at the weekend, which influenced the knitting I could do – plain stockinette in the round is the best thing ever for social knitting, and I’m really glad I’ve learnt to knit without looking – it meant I could chat and watch Strictly Come Dancing at the same time as knitting!

First up, Young Eistein is finished! I really love how it’s turned out. Hopefully it’ll be a good fit with some growing room. I used Rowan Handknit Cotton, which is sold in the UK as DK, but is really much closer to a worsted weight. It’s really soft and it shouldn’t have any problems in the wash. I really like the shade of green too, although it’s been pretty hard to get right in photos! I have a bit of a thing for buttons but these airplanes are particularly cute! I also like that they don’t all point directly up, although that was the way they were sewn on. I think it might be the seed stitch bumps that change how they sit, but I really like the result.

Holly is pretty much finished, but she’s still in pieces. Her feet are tied around her neck so they don’t get lost. I’ll get her put together soon although I never really look forward to it. I try to leave the tails long enough that I can use them to sew the parts together. I’m not sure who’s going to get this one yet. I’ll probably wait until I’ve got all the rest finished and seen what colours they are.

Ivy was the next monster I started. I think though, that this monster will end up going to the friend that was over at the weekend because purple is her favourite colour, so I put the body on a couple of dpns so I could have the needles back for something else.  I really like this shade of purple. I think Ivy is going to have to wait until I’ve finished Steve now though. It’s easier to focus on one monster at a time!

Steve is going to be yellow. I cast him on on Saturday so I could work on him instead of Ivy while I was chatting and watching TV. I though that Steve would be made the same way as Quincy, with sock style feet, but he actually just uses knit increases to form the feet. I just need to kitchener stitch up the bottom of the foot and then I can move on to the next one.

My shawl plans are beginning to make sense at last so I’m hoping to get it all charted and cast on this week.

Year of Projects Lists 2012-13

Shawls

Semele
Buds of May
Colour Affection
Blue Jean Wrap
at least six more

Hats

Calorimetry
Autumn Vines Beret
Quick Cable Slouch Hat/Lotus Hat
Maybe a hat for my husband

Cowls

Two or three (or more) but no patterns picked yet

Vests

Vestpa (may change this one, since stockinette is not exciting)
Twisted stitch cables – Circe Vest
Cables –  Green Day

Jumpers/Tops

One with cables – maybe Collins or something similar.
One with stripes – Tubey
Lacey Tunic

Fingerless Gloves

A couple of pairs with cables – Swirling Gauntlets
New Era (I will get these right if it kills me!)

Extras

Use up cotton for face cloths – 88 yrds/574 yrds used!
Use up Stash – 137.4 yards used!
Do more colour work!

In Progress

Young Einstein
Holly
Quentin
Daphne and Delilah
Dandelion on a Meadow Mystery KAL

Finished Projects

Momijigari – gift
Ravellenics Shawl