Saturday, July 16, 2011

Sweater-mending and oh, one more needlebound babyhat!

I promise, no more baby hats before I've finished the 14th century outfits! 

However, this last hat I'm really pleased with, and I think I'm starting to get a hang of this pattern-making thingy. Or what do you think? Still looking for someone else who also does these kinds of patterns in needlebinding, with colour changes more complex than just the normal changing-of-yarn thingy. Wow, it really is too late for blogging, I'm having serious problems putting together a sentence. It all seems to come out as jibberish. Anyhow,  here is the last baby hat.

A couple of days ago my boss came up to me and asked for a favor. Seeing that I'm always knitting, could I possibly have a look at her sweater? It was a bit torn and she had no idea how to mend it, but perhaps I could do something about it? I, of course, did not mention that I do needlebinding, not knitting. And though I had no idea how to mend the tear in the knitted fabric I nodded and said that I'd give it a go. 

Here is how it looked before I began....

And lo and behold, I did it! It was tricky business, but somehow I got the yarn through the correct loops and managed to sew the ends together. So here it is post mending... Pretty good, huh?

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

. . . and yet another needlebound babyhat!

Here is my fourth contribution to the Värma liten project ("warming a little one", see previous posts for explanation), a blue needlebound babyhat with a green heart.

Now, I must say this isn't the prettiest baby hat ever created. But from my point of view it's actually quite a large step forward, since the green heart wasn't added to the surface after completion, it's not embroidered or an application, it's actually a part of the needlebound fabric. Previously I experimented with just a line of a different color going in the "wrong" direction, but this is the first time I've actually managed to make a real pattern. It's not amazing, but it works. So the next step is to adjust the pattern more to the thickness of yarn and size of the stitches so that the image doesn't look as rough (it's almost like it has too few pixels, if you know what I mean, making the image look unsharp!).

Anyhow, even though this particular baby hat isn't the prettiest in the world I hope that it will be both useful and comfortable, so I'm sending it with the other baby hats I've made. Lastly, here it is together with the last hat I made, the red one with a green flower.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

... and yet another needlebound babyhat!

Here it is, my third needlebound babyhat!
Now, somehow the picture makes it look asymmetrical... but I assure you, that's not actually the case. =) As you can see I added a needlebound flower to this one as well, this time in green. I actually think the flower got a bit too thick, but I don't think it will feel uncomfortable to wear so I will leave it be.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Elderflower Cordial part II: review

The verdict is in.

The elderflower cordial was a success! I love it!

Two needlebound babyhats!

I have finished my two first babyhats for the Värma liten project (previous post here explains it all!), hooray!. Since I have had some fun ideas on how to develop my needlebinding technique I seized the opportunity to try something new...

Both hats are decorated with needlebound flowers... Something I've never done before, and I have never actually seen any done by others either! The green baby hat has a white flower, seen below. The inspiration came from the plumeria flower, which is just agonizingly pretty! My needlebound version isn't as beautiful, but I'm still pretty happy with the result.

Now check out the white stripe that runs from the top to the bottom. This is also something I've been thinking about for a while, and I've never actually seen anyone else do it. You know, it's easy to make stripes of different colours going horizontally across the fabric, which is done by simply switching the colour of the yarn at regular (or irregular!) intervals. This however was my first attempt at creating colour patterns beyond that, and the first step was creating a line that runs vertically across the fabric. It may not look like much but for me this is actually revolutionary!

The second hat, which by the way is really tiny, is red and made by yarn that is much thinner than what I'm used to. This means the resulting fabric is very fine and right, and I really love the look of it. It is decorated with a needlebound flower, which isn't actually black but really dark blue...

Now, I really wanted to try the hats on a real baby to see how the size was. But lacking babies I got one of my cats to volunteer as a model... He was delighted, and the hat fit perfectly. Or what do you think?  

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Elderflower Cordial part I

After a great visit to my husbands parents we came home with a bag of newly picked elderflowers. It was compeltely unplanned and unexpected, but since I for many years have wanted to try making elderflower cordial I was delighted!

A bit of searching on the internet gave me a recipe, based on 40-50 bundles of elderflowers, which was just what I had gotten. To this I added 4 sliced lemons, 30g of citric acid and boiling water mixed with a whole lot of sugar (2kg!). The mixture will now rest for a couple of days, after which I can run everything through a filter and get the finished product. I can barely wait! Elderflower cordial is one of my absolute favourite drinks and I really hope that my first batch will be good!

My only concern is how to store the finished product. In several sites I have read that it will only last for a month or so, if kept in the fridge. However, I suspect that as long as the bottle remains sealed it should last longer. If a bit of preservative is added it should keep even longer, right? One of the comments to the recipe mentioned sealed bottles of elderflower cordial made in 1966, which was still good in 2005! This of course was with preservatives added.

I generally don't like adding stuff like preservatives... I prefer a natural product! But at the same time I really want my bottles of cordial to stay in good shape for more than a month. So I got a small vial of preservatives and I think I'm going to add a little, just to be on the safe side. And then I'll keep some of it in the freezer, and some in sealed bottles. And I guess we'll have to see how long it will last!

Any thoughts on this?