My 10th Blog Anniversary

10th-birthday-balloons-11-inch-latex-ball1359_th2Wow! It dawned on me today that yesterday was my blog anniversary but I hadn’t twigged until just now that it is the 10th anniversary of starting this blog, and therefore 10 years ago when I started knitting in earnest as a keen newbie. I almost wasn’t going to write a blog post as my crafting mojo has been very up and down this past year or two. I still love knitting and sewing but what with renovating a house for 18 months and finally moving into it in the summer and running your own business, I just get in from work and don’t have the energy to do anything.

The past three months though, I’ve had a good excuse for feeling extra tired… we’re expecting a baby in July! In fact today, on my last day of the Christmas holiday break, I went shopping in Exeter to try and buy some maternity trousers. All my jeans and trousers are getting a bit tight now.There is a distinct lack of maternity wear around in the shops. What are women meant to do? I did get a pair of maternity jeans in JojoMamanBebe. They are way too long though and the waist is a bit high, but they’ll do and I can take up the length. I get the feeling they are catering for taller women.

I’m not going to bother to do a list of what I achieved last year and my aims for this year. With a baby on the way, who knows what I’ll have time to do.

I have however started some baby knitting – a plain white cotton cardigan. We won’t know if we’re having a boy or girl for another 6 weeks but I was dying to knit something, so plain white it had to be.

Vic’s Knits is 9 years old

Wow, 9 years ago my love of knitting sparked the launch of this blog!

Christmas was spent relaxing at home with my family. We’ve not really had any time off since last Christmas and it’s been a busy year what with with buying and renovating a new house that we have yet to move into, commitments at our church and running the business.

The shop has had its ups and down over the past 12 months but we are still going and there is much to consider as we move into 2016 and what direction the business should take. Sewing has definitely become more popular than knitting with our customers!

I think this is also reflected in my own craft life as well, because I received several sewing and patchwork books from my husband and Mum this year.

christmas 2016 books

I also got a Snoopy and Peanuts crochet kit. I have been a Snoopy fan since I was a child and now I really am going to have to get better at crochet!

I didn’t get many craft projects finished last year sadly. I have several quilt tops made but yet to be quilted. I only knitted a few things but I was pleased to publish my Trailing Leaves Poncho pattern.

I was so tired at the end of 2015. The last couple of weeks at work felt a bit of a chore and I couldn’t wait to close for the holidays. However, as I write this, I am feeling very positive and looking forward to the coming year. My brother gets married in May, we should be moving house and I really hope that we can get a holiday abroad this year. (We’ve not had a holiday since our honeymoon.)

I am definitely going to get at least one of my quilts finished too!!

My 8th Blog Anniversary

Happy New Year! I hope you have had a good holiday season. Today is the 8th anniversary of starting this blog!

As I write this I am relaxing at home, enjoying the end of our Christmas holidays. We decided to close the shop until 5th January as we’ve not had any time off since last Christmas and we needed a decent break.

Christmas was lovely. It was busy beforehand with several services at church in the days preceeding and last minute shopping etc but the day itself was peacefully spent with my family, eating a delicious roast turkey and all the trimmings. I made the family Christmas cake this year too.

christmas cake 2014

I was thoroughly spoilt with presents this year and of course there was a crafty type present or two… This year a bead loom and some seed beads from my Mum, plus a book of hat knitting patterns from my husband.

My husband also bought me some gorgeous little heart shaped beads which reminded me of the design we had on our wedding stationary etc. He thought I could make some stitch markers with them.

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/2ca/767958/files/2015/01/img_2020.jpg

He’s so thoughtful when it comes to presents. I’m useless at thinking of special ideas! I didn’t knit or sew any presents this year either.

2015 promises to be an exciting and busy year. I saw on Instagram and Twitter people posting #onelittleword – a single word to focus on for the year ahead. (An idea started by someone called Ali Edwards.) I thought it was a great idea to do this, rather than specific New Year Resolutions so I’ve decided my one little word will be “GROW“. This year I would like to grow in many areas of my life, as a Christian and as a wife, grow the business, grow our home (we’d like to move house), grow as a knitter and quilter and maybe as a cook too. I was given a total of 5 cookery books for Christmas this year and so I’ve decided to try and cook a new recipe every week from one these books. Two of them are Christmas cookery books, but there are some recipes in them that aren’t specifically Christmassy!

cook booksMy husband has also set me a challenge to learn to crochet properly and crochet him a sheep from a book called Edward’s Menagerie.

Edward's Menagerie

They are gorgeous patterns, but I can only crochet a granny square really, and so I’ve got a lot to learn if I’m going to make a toy!

I must finish at least one quilt this year too and write up some of my own knitting and quilt patterns. Not much then eh?!

2014 is here

We’re nearly at the end of January and I’ve not yet blogged in 2014. I missed posting on my blog anniversary on 2nd Jan as we were with the in-laws over New Year. This blog is now 7 years old!

Christmas was good. I knitted three Christmas presents this year. A neck wrap for my Mum from possum yarn, a pompom scarf for my mother-in-law and a huge moebius for my sister-in-law. All were well received!

I usually like to do a bit of a review and make some goals for the coming year. It doesn’t feel like I achieved much in 2013, craft-wise. I think getting married ate into my craft time! There’s hardly any finished projects for 2013 in my Ravelry page and I still have finished the cats and dogs quilt.

However I’m hoping that this year will see the quilt finished, and another one started. I would really like to do a sampler quilt. We’ve just started a series of patchwork classes in the shop and I’m feeling inspired. I’m half way through sewing a table runner at the moment and I’ve loved making it. I’ve been hooked on Pinterest the past few evening looking a various quilts and sewing projects that people have done. It’s so inspiring.

I’ve also got a pair of toe-up socks on the go for my husband. He’s “challenged” me to add certain features to the socks too… he’s a nightmare for doing that!

frans-right-sock

Not sure what else I’d like to knit in the coming months. I’m rather enjoying the sewing right now and with that in mind, I’ve changed the title of the blog from Vic’s Knits to Vicky the Stitch – a mafia style nickname I was given a couple of years ago by a friend, and an all-encompassing title for all the crafts I like.

Vic’s Knits is 6 years old

I’ve been a knitter and writing this blog for 6 years now. Today is my blog anniversary and I usually take this opportunity to review the past year and set myself some goals for the coming year.

I’ve just looked at my projects on Ravelry and I hardly knitted anything in 2012. I’m quite shocked actually and maybe even a little bit disappointed in myself.  I did start my It’s Raining Cats and Dogs quilt though, which was an aim for 2012 and that occupied me for quite a few evenings, so I do have that excuse. I hope I will be able to finish this quilt in the next few months.

I also taught myself entrelac too, which was one of my goals as was doing some more weaving. I didn’t do a lot of weaving but I have had some fun on my inkle loom.

I hope that you had a nice Christmas. We had a very chilled one. My brother was home for a few days and it was just him, me and my parents, eating lots of good food and watching lots of films on TV. I didn’t attempt to knit any Christmas presents this year. I normally knit my brother something, but I’d done hats, gloves, scarves and socks and even a cardigan, so I thought I’d probably exhausted the list of knitted items he might wear.  I have had a pair of socks for my fiancé on the needles for ages, but I’m not sure if they are going to fit him, so I didn’t bother trying to get them finished for Christmas. I need him to try them on.

Did you get any knitting related presents? I got 3 excellent looking knitting books this year.

Firstly, Cast On, Bind Off – 54 different cast ons and cast offs. They explain the advantages and disadvantages of each one and the diagrams look to be clear. I’ve yet to try one of them, but am looking forward to expanding my repertoire and choosing the right technique for my future projects. It’s quite a small spiral bound book, so should fit in my knitting bag.

Circular Knitting Workshop is the second book I had. This looks to be very comprehensive indeed – it’s a big book! I want to do more circular knitting and am hoping this book will help me polish up my technique.

The third book is The Knitters’s Handy Book of Patterns: Basic Designs in Multiple Sizes and Gauges (Interweave). I hope that this book will me to come up with some of my own designs.

So as far as 2013 goes, this is the plan:

Knitting Goals:

  • Learn and use some different cast ons and cast offs.
  • Finish the UFOs in my knitting bag
  • Knit some things that are in my Ravelry queue.
  • Knit a pair of socks that aren’t just the basic pattern.

Sewing Goals:

  • Finish the Cats and Dogs Quilt.
  • Start the Farmer’s Wife or Sampler Quilt.

I’m not going to make too many goals this year as it’s going to be a busy one, both personally and professionally. Shop-wise, I’m moving to the first floor of my building, which will double the space I have, and I’m going to start selling sewing machines as soon as I can get the website upgraded and updated. Work is going to be pretty busy over the next few months!

Personally it will be busy because I’m getting married this year! My lovely man proposed at the end of November. No date set yet, but we’d like to be married by the summer if possible. In fact we’re going to look at the first possible venue this weekend. I had it in mind that I might try and make a quilt for our first home together, but not sure I’ll get it done by the time we are married. If I’ve started it though, that will be nice. I have some fabric set aside for it, so it is just a matter of working out the design.

What are your plans for 2013?

Vic’s Knits 5th Birthday

It’s quite cool that I started writing this blog at the beginning of the year because I can combine the birthday review and a new year review.

2011 has been an interesting year for me both personally and professionally. Personally I’ve made some lovely new friends and professionally I’ve been able to drop all the website development work finally and just concentrate on Hulu, full-time. I now have a woolly brain, as I told my Mum last week.

I was looking back at the things I’d listed, which I hoped to achieve in 2011, and unfortunately I didn’t achieve many of them. Running a wool shop has just taken over everything really!

I didn’t do more crochet, I didn’t do much sewing, I didn’t write any of my own patterns, I didn’t complete all that many projects…  Oh well!  It gives me things to put on this year’s list!

Speaking of which… here’s what I’m hoping to achieve in 2012 in the way of crafts…

  • Sew a quilt
  • Learn entrelac and complete an entrelac project
  • Finish some of the projects that are languishing in my knitting bag and have been for months
  • Do lots more weaving, both on my rigid heddle loom and inkle loom
  • Keep knitting and use up some yarn from my stash!

What are your plans for 2012?

Vic’s Knits is 4 years old

Happy New Year to you, and Happy Blogiversary to me.

I can’t believe that I’ve been writing this blog for 4 years now and a lot has happened in that time with regards to my knitting. I’ve gone from a beginner to a yarn shop owner.

In my new year post, I usually like review the past year’s knitting achievements and my goals for the forthcoming year.  This time last year I said I wanted to:

  • learn to crochet to a reasonable level – Well, I did a little bit of crochet, but not a lot.  I crocheted a snowflake on Christmas Eve!
  • learn continental knittingdone!
  • make some patchwork bags – nope although I made some soft toys and an apron!
  • write the retro cardigan pattern I’ve wanted to do for ages – nope!
  • finish more projects that I did the previous yearyep!

So that was a semi successful knitting year I think!

What will 2011 bring I wonder?  I’m hoping that business in the shop will continue to grow and I will be able to give up the website development work that I’m still doing.  In terms of knitting goals, well I think:

  • do more crochet
  • practice the continental knitting that I learned recently
  • make the patchwork bags from the kits I have
  • make a patchwork quilt
  • write that cardigan pattern
  • finish the scallop blanket that I started months ago
  • finish the possum hat I started over a year ago!
  • finish at least the same number of knitting projects if not more
  • blog more

What are your crafting resolutions for 2011? Let me know in the comments below.