CH 286: March is the new January

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I don’t know about you but I’m ready for a little do-over of the start of the year! Today I’m talking about getting all my healthy streaks back on track, and tackling a few beautiful WIPs that deserve to be finished before I go casting on any of the shiny new patterns that are calling my name!

Show Links

Terracotta Socks by Woolfield Studio

Birch Hollow Fibers

Bembe Socks by Dawn Henderson

IndieLynx on Instagram

IndieLynx’s gorgeous Bembe socks in progress

Pebbles and Pathway Socks by Marceline Smith

HeyBrownBerry on Instagram

Seren Yarns on Instagram

Seren Yarns on Etsy

Clio Pullover by Elizabeth Doherty


Welcome to the Curious Handmade Podcast. You’re listening to episode 286. This podcast is all about crafting a life of happiness and creativity. I’m your host Helen and you can find me on Ravelry as Hell’s Bells and on social media as Curious Handmade. You can also find the full show notes and transcript on my website at

Hello, I hope you’re having a good week. Welcome to the show. I am a bit in shock that it’s March already and I’ve decided to declare March as the new January, as far as goals and resolutions go. I’m not quite sure what’s happened this year, but it’s all gone a bit pear shaped and I haven’t managed really any of my plans that are right to achieve with so much enthusiasm at the beginning of the year.

I had a grand plans for regular exercise and healthy food and all sorts of things and I just haven’t been very good with my, my streaks so far, so I’m rather than sort of give up and not worry about it, which is kind of tempting, I am resetting and starting again. So I’ve managed to get to Pilates at least twice this week, which is pretty good and I’m booked in for tomorrow, so that will be my goal of three times this week. I haven’t managed, I’ve managed very little walking and I think I’m really feeling it, in, I don’t know, just not being relaxed and feeling as good as I wish I did at the moment.

But yeah. So yeah, I need to, I need to just work out why I’m not getting to it. Currently the weather, it’s been raining an awful lot the last month or so. I don’t know if that’s really a very good excuse. I’m not sure what happened really. I need to sort of sit down and think back across month to actually think what’s happened. Anyway, I’ve been doing a little bit of knitting. I was switching on a design today and maybe that’s why I’m feeling a bit frustrated because I planned out a design, I drew a chart and the end result didn’t look how I wanted it to. It didn’t have the feeling that I wanted. I had a concept for the design and it just didn’t evoke the feeling. Sorry. So I watched all day on that and worked on the stitch pattern and the chart and, and I’ve decided I, I like it.

So it’s probably adding to my frustrated mood tonight. So I always just tell myself if I keep swatching for long enough, I will get there eventually. It’s just, yeah, I think I’m just frustrated that I took my whole day to realize that I wasn’t where I wanted to be. But I’ll, I’ll just start again. I’ll look for some new ideas and start again. I spoke last week about how I’d finished my terracotta socks by WoolFields Studio and I talked about the Birch Hollow Fibers yarn and that I couldn’t remember the name. And so I just wanted to add in that I looked up the name and it’s Roses for Sophrenia. It’s one of her, I think a regular colorway that Robin does and yeah, it’s just really gorgeous. I have taken photos and we’ll get them up on social media and I was talking about starting a pattern from 52 weeks of socks by Laine.

And the pattern was Bembe by Dawn Henderson. And I had picked out some yarn, which was a really soft pink, and then I saw Claire who is indielynx on Instagram knitting those same socks. And she had tries in this really vibrant sort of golden, golden yellowy, browny color. And it was just so, I don’t know, I just loved it and I just thought, Oh, the pale pink isn’t going to cut it for these socks. And they were a little bit variegated as well. And I think this needs a really strong, solid or semi-solid, at least yarn. So I’m going to go back to the stash. Back to the drawing board. I’d chosen this yarn because I already had it wound into a ball. It was one of the yarns that I rescued for my swatching and I thought, Oh, I’ll just use that because it’s already wound and it’s easily to hand.

But yeah, no, I don’t think so. I think I will just continue using that yarn for swatching as I will be continuing my swatch. So rather than start that, I decided that I should finish my pebbles and pathways socks, which I’m probably three quarters done with. I’m onto the second sock and I’ve done the leg, so I’m up to the heel flap with those and yeah, I think I should just finish them. They’re so cute. The yarn is by my friend Emma Saren Yarns. She’s an English indie Dyer and it’s just such gorgeous yarn and it’s going really, really well with the pattern. So I need to finish those socks first, I think. Yeah, just finish something before I start another thing. Oh otherwise I’ll just sit there forever and not get finished and they’re nearly done. So that’s my plan now. And I’m also going to this weekend, this is my accountability, You’re my accountability partners this week, and I am going to pick up the stitches for a sleeve on my Clio pullover.

This is a WIP that’s been going on for a very, very long time and I need to get that done as well. So I am kind of sick of talking about it, sick of talking about not doing it. So I’m going to pick up the stitches this weekend and then I’ll be able to just putter away on it doing a pickup stitches, and I think there’s a little bit of short rows involved. Just means you know, that bit of extra concentration needed that is being a barrier to me doing it at all. So I’m going to overcome the barrier I’m going to cost on the sleeve and start working on that again. It’s had so many, not really timeouts, just time resting.

Yeah. So that’s my plan. That’s my knitting plan for the next week or two or three. Yeah. Pebbles and pathway socks by HeyBrownBerry, Marceline Smith and Clio by Elizabeth Doherty. Of course I’m so distracted by so many other projects I want to cast on, but I’m just going to, I just need to focus and finish some things.

And other exciting news this week, my sofa arrived from my studio and I’m very excited about this. It’s really nice and very comfy. And when I was dreaming about my studio, before we even moved to Australia, I was planning to have a friend’s chair in my office or studio and my mom has started this concept or trend within our family, and in her office she has a little comfy arm chair and dad goes in and sits with her and has a cup of tea with her. And when we have visiting, we sit with her and if she’s crafting or just at her computer, something like that, we’ll go in and have a chat.

And so I really liked that idea and I planned, to get a friend’s chair, but my studio is quite big and I thought what would be even better as friend’s sofa because I thought, Oh, it’d be nice to be able to be working in my studio. Maybe if I fancied it, have a little lie down and read something. And I also was hoping that the girls would come down and maybe do a little bit of homework or a little bit of cross with me and yeah, and already they’re doing that. So that’s working really well. And so if he comes down and does her math homework and Lexi’s craze of knitting Nancy, knitting tubes with a toilet paper and pedal pop sticks is still going strong, it’s seems to be back back happening again. So she’s been making some, some French knitting, knitting Nancy and keeping me company while I do tedious admin.

So now I have all the furniture and now I really need to just a little bit of sorting out a little bit of decluttering. I’ve got some piles of things that I can’t quite deal with. So I need to make myself deal with some filing and some things like that. Just get this into a lovely, relaxing, serene space. It’s a little bit too cluttered and too many piles of doom at the moment to be relaxing, but maybe I’ll tackle a few of the piles this weekend as well. I think what I need today is find a inspirational picture on Pinterest or in a magazine that I know what I’m aiming for as something very Zen and relaxing to motivate me. At the moment I just have a mouse cage and they’re very messy. They keep throwing things out of their cage. I need to need to sort that out and find a home or at least some sort of tray to put the cage in so that I don’t end up with food and bedding all over my studio.

I hope it isn’t TMI when I talk about the mice because I know that they’re not everybody’s favorite pets and give people the heebie-jeebies but including me, we had a couple of infestations in our house in London because just happens in houses in London pretty regularly and I was not at all happy about that. But having them as pets, it really is different and I am finding them surprisingly cute, so I’m quite surprised that I liked them as much as I do. Lexi absolutely adores hers and is in the process of training one to do tricks now. So yeah, it’s all quite fun. It’s nice having a pet.

Well, I hope you have a really good week in the midst of all the madness that seems to be happening in the world, again, at the moment. There’s so many crazy things happening that it’s quite hard to focus and I am definitely relying on my knitting to keep calm and relaxed and I should probably get back into my walking with a bit more regularity to be able to keep stress levels down. So, yes, I hope you’re all well, happy knitting and I’ll talk to you again soon.


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