this bad blogger

This bad blogger has no good excuses for being late with announcing the winner of the giveaway, because no excuses are good enough for that. All this bad blogger has to say is that spring has hit Brussels, that friends have been to visit, and that the computer doesn’t stand a chance these days in the battle versus fresh air. Which is a good thing. Tonight this bad blogger is catching up on un-dealt-with mail, relaxing with some knitting, and cooking up all perishables in the fridge in preparation for a 10-day trip hooooooome :) Which is an even better thing. And not just for this bad blogger, but also for you, dear winner of giveaway, chosen by the Holy Random Number Generator, who went with the number 3 this time around.

So, congratulations, dozenoaks! Please get in touch via Ravelry (my username is fridica), let me know your username and which pattern you’d like to receive, and we’ll get this thing rolling! :)

Everyone else, thank you for stopping by and sharing your experiences of early knitting. I wish there were stories like these to be read every day! It’s so great to share this wonderful world with you, thank you for the companionship along the way :)

And before I shut down the computer again, here is a photo of my latest project… Most definitely in progress! ;)

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four years and still counting stitches…

What a great anniversary I am celebrating today, my friends! It has been four years, to the day, since I cast on and knitted my first stitch. Wow. How do I know it so accurately, you might ask? Well, pure luck, as that fated day when I first picked up the needles happened to be an Easter Sunday, and was therefore easy to trace back when I realised, a bit later on, what an important role knitting was going to have in my life.

I hadn’t suspected any of it on that slow Sunday. To be honest, I was just bored, like one generally is on most Easter Sunday afternoons, when the whole world (or rather, my whole world) quiets down in order to nurse its overfilled stomach. In addition, I had recently finally completed my undergrad studies (after several years of struggling with parallel full-time work and studying) and was enjoying discovering again what it meant to have free time after coming home from work. Free time that, if I had only known, would soon be completely overtaken by strange things called ‘knits’, ‘purls’, ‘yarnovers’, and lots and lots of counting under my breath.

Today, four years later, I knit avidly almost every day.

Today, four years later, I write a blog about knitting.

Today, four years later, I am pretty damn skillful with my needles.

Today, four years later, I co-organise a social knitting group in a foreign country.

Today, four years later, when I introduce myself to someone new, one of the first things I say is: I’m a knitter.

So, in retrospect, that slow Easter Sunday was definitely one of the best things that has ever happened to me. :)

In order to celebrate this special day, I’d like to offer you a little giveaway. I will shamelessly steal an idea I once saw on another blog: as the prize, I will offer the winner any pattern that can be purchased on Ravelry, of their own choice. To enter, simply comment on this post, and if you remember, tell me about the day you started knitting. It’s one entry per person, and you have until the end of the day on March 30th. I’ll select the winner by random number draw and announce who it is on March 31st.

Happy weekend to all! :)

happy birthday, YarnOnTheHouse

If you haven’t yet heard of YarnOnTheHouse, where have you been living? :)

This special blog, dedicated almost exclusively to regular yarn giveaways, has been running for a year now. I find it fascinating that such a concept has managed not only to survive but to flourish, and I admire Ve’s energy in bringing us interesting interviews with people from our industry and gifts of yarny goodness at such a crazy pace!

While I’ve been super-lucky with some other giveaways recently, I’ve never won anything at YOTH, and I don’t even enter every giveaway. But I always stop by to see what’s new and come away with great ideas from our fellow-knitters (such as these adorable tiny swatches! wouldn’t you just love a yarn shop that has a swatch for every single yarn and colourway they sell?).

This week, in celebration of their birthday, YOTH is giving away all unclaimed yarn from 2010 (pictured above) to one unbelievably lucky person. You can enter by becoming an official follower of the blog, or (is there anything easier in the world?) by joining their Ravelry group.

Just thought I’d let you know… :)

challenge complete

Last week, I put together a little challenge on a total whim, and I have to say it worked better than I expected it to! Thank you everyone who participated. Seeing your accidental photos of knits and reading your stories about them kept me smiling all week… There were photos of handknits keeping people warm at festivals, while recovering from being sick, at birthday parties, on fishing trips, in everyday situations, and even as part of two wedding dresses! I really encourage you to look through all the comments and follow the links, I guarantee you’ll have fun.

And of course, I haven’t forgotten that I had promised a little reward for one lucky entrant. Well, the random number generator went with number 20, and that happened to be one of my favourite entries. Let Laurie speak for herself:

Since I wear my handknits almost every day, it’s pretty easy to find a picture of me wearing one of them. However, this is the best – It was taken yesterday afternoon and is a picture of me holding my first grandchild who was born Saturday afternoon. I’m wearing Romi Hill’s Merope Shawl, but obviously it is neither the shawl nor the wearer who is the star of this picture. :-)

Here’s the link, with Laurie and the little munchkin (and the knit, as if anyone will be looking at that ;) on photo five. Isn’t that too sweet? :) Congrats Laurie! I’ll be sending you a little surprise parcel as soon as I receive your address!

giveaway winner

I enlisted the help of the two yarnballs in finding them a new owner…

And after loads and loads of mixing and shuffling, they came up with…

who had listed Kathy Merrick as her favourite designer.

By crazy coincidence, Tammy is the person in whose giveaway I won a few weeks ago! Talk about my idea to give back… So, no need to send me your address, Tammy, I already have it off the package you had sent me! Congrats and keep an eye on your mail! :)

Thanks to everyone who participated! Having to choose just one winner always gives me an uncomfortable pang – so you can definitely count on more givewaways to make up for that… Hugs all round!

it was about time! giveaway!

Lately I’ve been such a lucky blogger and knitter – winning in giveaways all over the place! Now, I’m not one to scoop up all the sweets and eat them on my own, so I’ve decided to give a bit back. :) Thus, here I am presenting to you the second fridica giveaway :)

The theme this time is designers, and I would like to present to you a very special young designer who has given me her kind permission to give away one of her patterns! Connie Chang Chinchio describes herself as a trained physicist who “works on environmental health science research between sweaters”. Just another piece of evidence that knitters extraordinaire come from every possible occupation and that, regardless what they were originally, knitting does not fail to take over one’s life. :)

My favourite in Connie’s designs are her cardigans, which are invariably simple yet interesting.

The squishy Metro

The intriguing Geodesic

And the feminine Printed Silk

Connie has also designed some wonderful hats and mittens, which brings us back to the giveaway! :) The Cayuga Set is a pattern for matching hat and mittens featuring cute bobbles. It rings very Christmassy to me and I think it would make a wonderful gift for your loved ones or yourself ;) And if you’re not into matching, then you can just make one or the other. The choice is yours – you get the whole set!

So, you can win a pattern for a hat & mittens set and as an extra, I’ll throw in 436 yards of aran weight yarn from my stash! The yarn should be sufficient to make the set, if you like, but of course it’s up to you to use it for whatever you please.

What do you need to do? Comment on this post, and in your comment, leave me a link to your favorite knitwear designer (it can be a website, blog or Ravelry link :) Please keep it to one link because otherwise my spam filter won’t let you through. Feel free, but not obliged, to tell others about the giveaway in any form you like.

It’s one entry per person, and you have until the end of the day on November 29th.

I’ll select the winner by random number draw and announce who it is on November 30th. Oh, and one more thing – I will ship anywhere in the world, so feel free to sign your name even if you are from Tasmania, Zanzibar, Alaska or Siberia!

Let’s take it away… :)