Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Cabled Wine Bottle Cover and Copyright

Life can be very strange at times.  

I was recently asked if I could re-work a pattern for a hot water bottle cover, to make it into a wine bottle cover.  After thinking about it, I decided it was easier to simply  design a wine bottle cover from scratch.  And as you will be able to see from the previous post, that is exactly what I did.

Now comes the strange part...  My rights as the author of the pattern, and the designer of the item have been infringed.  Under copyright law, I hold the right to decide what to do with my writing.  Sadly, it seems that a little company, Little Valley Winery has decided that copyright law does not apply to them.  My pattern has somehow (magically?) arrived on their website, without any permissions being sought, or granted. It looks like this company simply lifts wine-related material from all over the web, and posts it on their website.  Today's post seems to be directly lifted from an article in the Brisbane Times

The business model seems to be based around the 'Amazon Associates' model.  This is where you direct traffic to a commercial site, and the site pays you a percentage of what ever the person buys.  There is absolutely nothing wrong with this.  But I do find it rather distasteful when it is accompanied by illegal activity, ie copyright infringement.  

One glorious thing is that the website says on its DMCA page, "Little Valley Winery respects the intellectual property of others."  To the slightly jaded individual, it might seem the respect given is based on the idea the words and work  of others can be used for financial gain, and stuff the rights of others. 

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Update:  On the 5th of April 2011, Little Valley Winery emailed to say that the image, article and link had now been removed, and there should be no more issues.  

Hmmm...  My continuing issue is they broke the law and have not bothered to acknowledge their wrong-doing, nor apologise.  They are continuing to do exactly the same thing to other people. 

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Cabled Wine Bottle Cover

Cabled Wine Bottle Cover

Cast on 8 sts using a provisional cast on.

Using 5mm needles and two strands of DK yarn, knit one round.

1. Kfb into every stitch.
2. K
3. K1, kfb, repeat to the end of the round.
4. K
5. K2, kfb, repeat to the end of the round.
6. K
7. K3, kfb, repeat to end of the round.
8. K4, p1, repeat to end of the round.
9. K3, kfb, p1, repeat to end of the round.

Work 3 rounds of 4x2 rib (k4, p2). 

Cable pattern
1. Cable 4, p2, repeat to end of round.
2-8. K4, p2, repeat to end of round.

Work 10 repeats of the cable pattern, or until it is long enough to cover your bottle.

Eyelets
1. Cable 4, p2, repeat to end of round.
2-4. K4, p2, repeat to end of round.
5. K4, yo, p2tog, yo, repeat to end of round.
6. K4, p1, p2tog, repeat to end of round.
7. K4, p2, repeat to end of round.
8. K4, p2, repeat to end of round.

Work 1 more cable pattern.

Moss stitch border
K1, p1 to second last stitch.  kfb, p1.
Work in moss stitch(K1, p1) for 7 more rows.  

Cast off in pattern.
Remove the provisional cast on.  Using a tapestry needle, thread the yarn through the stitches.  Draw together and fasten off the yarn securely.  Weave in ends, and thread a ribbon through the eyelets.

Cabled Wine Bottle Cover

A person on Ravelry.com saw my Cabled Hot Water Bottle Cover.  She had seen a picture of a cabled wine bottle cover and asked if my hot water bottle cover might be able to be adapted into a wine bottle cover.  This got me thinking. :o)

The answer was that it would be easier to design a wine bottle cover from scratch than try to adapt the hot water bottle cover pattern.   I am currently writing the pattern as I knit.  This is fairly standard for my design process.  

The bottom of the cover is a simple stocking stitch circle/octagon that increases by 8 stitches every second round.  When the bottom has 48 sts, the increasing stops and the sides start.  Then it is a simple cable pattern all the way up the height of the bottle. (I am about half way up just now.)

When the top of the bottle is reached I shall  put in a round of eyelets, work a couple more patterns of the cable, and then a moss stitch border (seed st in US).  This will cause the top cover to flair out slightly.  

I hope to have finished the knitting and the pattern by this evening.  A photograph will follow.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Fibonacci Cables Hat

Fibonacci Cables Hat (Child)
Child's Hat

s: 3.5mm and 4.0 mm 
:  Jaeger Matchmaker Merino DK in Pumpkin (115m) 
Using 3.5mm needle, cast on 96sts, and join.
Work in 2x2 rib for 8 rounds.
 Change needle to 4mm.

Work in 6x2 rib for 20 rounds.
Cable 6 (Transfer 3 sts onto cable needle, and hold at the back. Knit 3. Then from the cable needle, k3), p2, repeat to end.

Work in 6x2 rib for 12 rounds.
Transfer 3 sts onto cable needle, and hold at the back. Knit 3. Then from the cable needle, k2tog, k1. P2. Repeat. (84 sts)

Work in 5x2 rib for 7 rounds.
Transfer 3 sts onto cable needle, and hold at the back. Knit 2. Then from the cable needle, k2tog, k1. P2. Repeat. (72 sts)

Work in 4x2 rib for 4 rounds.
Transfer 2 sts onto cable needle, and hold at the back. Knit 2. Then from the cable needle, k2tog. P2tog. Repeat. (48 sts)

Work in 3x1 rib for 2 rounds.
Transfer 2 sts onto cable needle, and hold at the back. Knit 1. Then from the cable needle, k2tog. P1. Repeat. (36 sts)

Work in 2x1 rib for 1 rounds.
Transfer 1 sts onto cable needle, and hold at the back. Knit 1. Then transfer the stitch from the cable needle onto the left needle, k2tog. Repeat. (24 sts)

K2tog. Repeat. (12 sts)

K2tog. Repeat. (6 sts)

Break off yarn, leaving a tail. Thread the tail of yarn through a tapestry needle, and go through the loops of the 6 sts. Then weave in the ends.

Fibonacci Cables Hat (Adult)
Adult Hat
Needles:  3.5mm, 4mm
Yarn:        Rowan Pure Wool DK (180m) in Enamel
Notes:      The adult version of Fibonacci Cables Hat is longer than the child version.  It has two extra cable widths included in the pattern.

Pattern

Using 3.5mm needles, cast on 112 sts. Join. Then work in 2x2 rib (knit 2, purl 2) for 21 rounds.

Switch to 4mm needles, and work 20 rounds of 6x2 rib (knit 6, purl 2).

1st cable round
Transfer 3 sts onto cable needle, and hold at the back. Knit 3. Then knit 3 from the cable needle. Purl 2. Repeat to end.

Work in 6x2 rib for 12 rounds.

2nd cable round
Transfer 3 sts onto cable needle, and hold at the back. Knit 3. Then from the cable needle, k2tog, k1. P2. Repeat. (98 sts)

Work in 5x2 rib for 7 rounds.

3rd cable round
Transfer 3 sts onto cable needle, and hold at the back. Knit 2. Then from the cable needle, k2tog, k1. P2. Repeat. (84 sts)

Work in 4x2 rib for 4 rounds.

4th cable round
Transfer 2 sts onto cable needle, and hold at the back. Knit 2. Then from the cable needle, k2tog. P2tog. Repeat. (56 sts)

Work in 3x1 rib for 2 rounds.

5th cable round
Transfer 2 sts onto cable needle, and hold at the back. Knit 1. Then from the cable needle, k2tog. P1. Repeat. (42 sts)

Work in 2x1 rib for 1 rounds.

6th cable round
Transfer 1 sts onto cable needle, and hold at the back. Knit 1. Then transfer the stitch from the cable needle onto the left needle, k2tog. Repeat. (28 sts)

K2tog. Repeat. (14 sts)

K2tog. Repeat. (7 sts)

Break off yarn, leaving a tail. Thread the tail of yarn through a tapestry needle, and go through the loops of the 7 sts. Then weave in the ends.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Flapjacks

Flapjacks
The names of these last two recipes might well confuse some Americans.  Apparently, there are some places in the US where pancakes are called flapjacks and vice versa. :o)

250g butter
250g light brown sugar
250g golden syrup
500g porridge oats (gluten-free)

Preparation method
Preheat the oven to 150C.  Grease a 30cm x 23cm (12x9”) baking tin.

Gently melt the butter, and add the golden syrup and sugar.  When the sugar is dissolved, remove the pan from the heat and stir in the oats.  (I used Nairn’s gluten-free oats).  Put the mixture into the well greased backing tin, and press it down very well.  Bake in the oven for 40 minutes.  Once cooked, remove from the oven, leave to cool for 15 minutes, then turn out on to a chopping board and cut into 24 squares.

The original recipe said "These flapjacks are delicious in a packed lunch or as a grab-and-go breakfast."  I agree they are delicious, but as a 'grab-and-go breakfast, I don't think they are suitable.  Don’t be lulled into the idea that these flapjacks are ‘healthy’ because of the amount of oats in them.  They are high in calories and fat, and should definitely be viewed as treats.  However, they taste amazing!

Don’t replace the butter with margarine.  It simply doesn’t taste the same.  It is far better to have a truly wonderful treat once in a while than have a mediocre one more frequently.


Sunday, February 13, 2011

Granny's Pancakes



This is an old family recipe.  Well... sort of. My Granny (great-grandmother) made pancakes and these were loved by all of the family. My Grandma made them, and then my Mam.  

When my children were little they loved eating pancakes when they were at their Grandma's house. One day, they said it was a shame that I couldn't make pancakes. They were very surprised to learn that I could make pancakes, and they pestered me to make them every Saturday morning for breakfast. Later, I made them when I felt like it. But they were always requested for people's birthday breakfasts.

Pancakes were the first thing I tried to adapt after my diagnosis with Coeliac Disease. They adapted really well. So, here are Granny's Pancakes, with a bit less sugar, and free from gluten.

Ingredients
2 cups of Dove Farm plain flour 
3 rounded teaspoons of baking powder 
1 large egg 
1/2 cup of sugar 
1 1/4 cups of milk 

Method
Combine all the ingredients thoroughly. Take one tablespoonful of the pancake batter to make a pancake. Drop it onto a girdle, or frying pan, over a low to medium heat. When the mixture is bubbling all over turn the pancake over and cook the other side. Both sides should be a lovely golden brown colour.  

Only once have I been able to test whether they freeze well. (They do.) Normally, our problem is they disappear too quickly.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Chocolate Cheesecake Muffins

Tonight felt like a 'muffin night'.  :o)  I have made 'chocolate cheesecake muffins' and they are in the oven as I type.  This recipe comes from Muffins: Fast and Frantic. It is a glorious book of muffins.  Every so often I try a new recipe and it becomes my favourite. 

Chocolate Cheesecake Muffin

Muffins
255g plain flour
10ml baking powder
2.5ml sodium bicarbonate
100g sugar
45-75ml unsweetened cocoa powder
1 egg
240-260ml milk
5ml vanilla essence
90ml vegetable oil

Cream Cheese Filling
100g softened cream cheese
30g sugar
 
Pre-heat the oven to 200°C.  Prepare the muffin tins.  I use silicon muffin cases.

In a large bowl mix all the dry ingredients together.  In a separate bowl, mix the egg, milk, vanilla essence and vegetable oil.  In a third bowl, mix the cream cheese and sugar.

Then tip the egg-milk mix into the dry ingredients.  Mix well, but quickly.  Three quarters fill the muffin cases, then add a dollop of the cream cheese to the centre.  Cover with the remaining muffin mix. Bake in the middle of the oven for 20-25 minutes.

You can omit the cream cheese mixture, and put in chopped nuts, or chocolate chips, orange zest etc.

I use Dove Farm flour, bicarb and baking powder.  They are gluten-free.  However, the recipe is equally as good with their gluten-y counterparts.  Substitute them weight for weight.

The muffins can be eaten straight away as a hot dessert (served with ice cream, and any cream cheese mix left over).  They can be allowed to cool (not in this family).  And they freeze well too.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Manx Baby Bootees

7th and 8th in 52 in 52
Baby bootees knitted in King Cole Anti-tickle Merino.  The ribbon the Manx Laxey tartan.

Rainbow Socks

5th and 6th in 52 in 52

These socks were knitted from leftover yarn.  The teal is a lovely merino sock yarn from Jawoll.  The rainbow yarn is perhaps unsurprisingly called 'Rainbow', and is from Lorna's Laces.

Cabled Hot Water Bottle Cover

4th of 52 in 52
A cabled hot water bottle cover, knitted in King Cole Merino (chunky).  I am waiting for 5 small wooden buttons to be made.  These will be sewn on to the flap. 

Mirage Slipper Socks

2nd and 3rd of 52 in 52
Cold feet dictated that I make some warm slipper socks for myself.  These were made using King Cole Mirage, held double, and using a fairly standard sock pattern.  The soles I knitted in garter stitch instead of stocking stitch, to make them thicker.

H is for Hat

1st of 52 in 52
My daughter's boyfriend requested a Cookie Monster hat.  This is the result.

The hat was started in a lovely blue DK merino wool, in rib, and then continued in a blue eyelash yarn.  The eyes were made from white and black acrylic.  These are little domes, and were sewn on after the hat was completed.

52 items in 52 weeks

In 2009 and 2010, I joined a challenge to make 52 items in 52 weeks. My total in 2010 was greater than in 2009, and this year, in 2011, I am hoping that I will be able to achieve my goal.

I have decided to count socks and gloves as two projects. Later in the project, I hope to make a pair count as one item. But for the moment, I want a nice little stash of finished projects that will speed me on my way to the coveted goal of “52 in 52”.

Oatcakes

225g oats
100g gluten-free flour (I used Dove Farm Plain Flour)
pinch of salt
1 tsp baking powder (level)
75g butter
cold water

Put the oats in the food processor, and blend until they are very fine. Add the rest of the ingredients. Blitz. Add the water a little at a time until the mixture just starts coming together.

Turn onto a board and work together. Roll out the dough, and cut into shapes. Place them on a baking sheet and cook at 180C for 25 minutes.

Cook on a rack and store in an airtight container or the freezer.

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Oats are naturally gluten-free, but they can become contaminated during processing.  Nairn sells Swedish oats that are certified gluten-free.  They can be bought in Tesco, as well as other places. 

Gluten-free Recipes

A few weeks ago, I was diagnosed as having Coeliac Disease.  It is an auto-immune response to gluten, and has a quite a range of symptoms.  However, since starting a gluten-free diet, my health has been improving in leaps and bounds.  I have also started losing weight!

Gluten is present in a range of different cereals.  The most important ones for me were wheat and barley.  These two ingredients are in a huge range of foods.  I love cooking and baking, and so, I am learning new recipes.  I plan to share my successes here.

What does Maghouin Beg mean?

When I first started using the internet (in the days before the Web), I was given the name 'babybear'.  This name stuck with me for years, and to many, this is how they knew me.

Later,  I joined Ravelry   I found that 'my' name had already been taken!  What on earth was I going to call myself?  I had been learning Welsh, and so I became 'arthbach' (lit) little bear.  Today, when trying to create a blog, I find that 'babybear' and 'arthbach' have both been taken.  But... I have just started learning Manx.  Can you guess what 'maghouin beg' means?  Yup, you guessed, I am now 'little bear' in Manx.