May 30, 2005
I finished Giraffe's sleeves - Hooray!
I think I'll have enough yarn, but the neck may not be as long as the original. The back weighs 146g. I have 180g of yarn left, so I should be okay. Mind you, that is weighing swatches too. I may get that desperate! I found an online store that still has some in the right colour, but a different dyelot. Once I have finished the front, I'll have a look at how much yarn I have left, then decide if I have enough, or if I need to get one more ball.
It's my birthday tomorrow, so DH and Em are taking me out for dinner tonight. A big night out - Lonestar Steakhouse ;)
We're going tonight, because on Mondays kids eat free. And I can get a reasonably priced steak and prawns, and a yummy, yummy hot fudge brownie. And no dishes! Hoo-freakin-ray!
May 29, 2005
I've decided to knit something a little different than usual. Emily's school has a fete every year, and they are asking for craft donations. I thought that I could do something cheap and easy. Isn't that always a guarantee that whatever you decide on will be anything but cheap and easy? ;)
This is what I'm doing. I have this craft brochure from years back.
I have since discovered that Craftlon is no longer being made. However, there is a substitute available called Knitlon. Good enough! I don't know if this stuff is available outside of Australia. It's a nylon strip around an inch wide. My Grandma used to use it to cover coat hangers and for Toilet Dolls and all that fete/craft stall stuff. You just knit it like yarn. This pattern calls for a much smaller needle than usual. It would normally require around a 5mm needle, but I'm using a 2.5mm. I don't find it particularly pleasant to knit with.
And I could not find the 9 1/2" dolls anywhere in Australia, so I had to order them from the US. Because I couldn't see if they were exactly what I wanted, I only ordered two. Now, of course I wish I'd ordered more. Although by the time I finish one dress, I may wish I'd only ordered one ;)
Why didn't I just knit some washcloths? At least I will have contributed to the fete in some way, and won't have to feel guilty.
Twinkie is always comfy, because she carries her own little chin cushion around wherever she goes. ;)
May 26, 2005
A bit of knitting happening!
Giraffe's sleeves are growing. I'm up to the shoulder cap shaping. At this stage, I have 2 full balls and 2 not-quite-full balls. I still have to do the sleeve shaping, and I need three balls for the front, then I need to do the neckband. I'm still not sure I'm going to make it. At this stage of a project, I usually start knitting furiously, just so I can work out if I'm wasting my time or not!
The Dublin Bay sock is slowly growing, too. The colours are pooling, as you can see here, but I can live with that :)
I've been trying to spin, but I really don't think I'm cut out for it. Twinkie had a go, though ;)
May 18, 2005
If anyone has tried to email me, but had trouble, I've got a new email address.
My ISP hasn't acknowledged that there is a problem, let alone fixed it, so I've succumbed and got a Gmail account. You can now contact me at randomknits at gmail dot com.
Now the official bits are over :)
I finished the bootees that go with the little baby hat :)
Now I have to wait for people to have these babies! One of the mums from Em's dance studio is due in a few weeks, and DH's cousin is not far behind.
And I started a new pair of socks! Using the gorgeous "Purple Club" Lorna's Laces that Jill sent me, I've started some Dublin Bay socks, a free sock pattern courtesy of Ryan from Mossy Cottage Knits, who is also the host of the Dulaan Project. Which reminds me that I had really better send off all those hats and mittens!)
I love this sock pattern, and as you can see it's going very well ;)
I've done 2 whole rows. :)
Giraffe is going very well, also. I'm nearly up to armhole shaping on the back. Look at the pic in the last entry and add a few inches.
May 16, 2005
My birthday is in a couple of weeks, but Jill got in early. Look what she made for me! A Polar Bear!
Every time there is a gift giving occasion, DH and Em ask me what I want. I always say that I'd like a polar bear. Hasn't happened yet. Until now :)
Thankyou, Jill, he's gorgeous!
I have started a new sweater, Giraffe from Knitty. I'm using the Angora Supreme the pattern calls for, which has been discontinued by Cleckheaton. I started a sweater with this yarn early last year, but couldn't get gauge, so I frogged it, and hid the yarn away. This time, my gauge is pretty good, and the sweater is going quickly.
I've done the second of four decreases on the back.
I'm off to find somewhere special for my polar bear to live. :)
May 14, 2005
My cousin passed away yesterday (13 May) after a long battle with Breast Cancer.
I have 36 cousins on that side of the family, and we weren't close, in fact I haven't seen her in quite a long time. She was older than me, and in our family, the cousins are in pretty much 2 generations. She was part of the older generation, I was part of the younger.
In any case, she passed away yesterday after a very long and painful battle with this devastating disease.
She leaves behind 3 children. An 18 year old, a 6 year old and a baby girl of 2. I'm glad she is at peace, finally, but I'm so sad for her parents, her husband and her children. While her pain and suffering may be at an end, her family's pain will live on for a long time. As will the pain and sadness we all feel.
You know that it can strike anyone, no one is immune, we had our own battle with cancer that my husband thankfully survived. But nothing makes it easier, and if there is I could wish only one thing for the world, it would be a cure for cancers of all types.
May 12, 2005
Here are the Bearfoot socks :)
Mountain Colors Bearfoor yarn, colour "Crazy Woman". The pattern is Purl Lace Socks from Socks, Socks, Socks.
I love the Bearfoot, and I can see many more socks made of this in my future. It's a nice soft, thick yarn, and the resulting socks are warm and comfy.
The hat is done, too :)
After the red garter bit, you change colour, and before the stocking stitch part, there is a small rib portion to help the hat fit better. How clever! When the hat is complete, the rib part is hidden behind the band.
But I finished the hat not half an hour ago.
I'm pleased with it :) I used all the ends from the start to attach the i-cord edging. Now I'm going to do the matching bootees. I seem to be on a small project kick right now.
Em is always working on her flexibility. She's pretty good, but she'd like to learn acrobatics. There isn't anywhere close by us that I can find, so she just stretches at dance class and at home.
She is now able to put her feet either side of her head. I hurt just watching :)
May 10, 2005
I've started a new baby set, and it's fun :)
I liked this one, because I think it's good for a boy or a girl.
First you knit a little triangle.
Then you add four more little triangles.
Then you have...
a mess! What a nice bunch of ends to weave in :)
Seriously though, it's good fun, and nice and quick. It's from Cleckheaton "Little Babies" pattern book. (Number 425)
There's a cute little bear set in there that I love, too :)
And I finally finished my Bearfoot socks. Pics tomorrow when there's light.
May 09, 2005
I have been intending to point out that Sarah has begun an Australian online knitting mag, called Southern Cross Knitting. The first issue went live last week, so if you haven't seen it yet, go on over and have a look! :)
If anyone had trouble getting to my site over the weekend, it's because you're still coming through the old URL. My website used to piggyback onto DH's URL, but now I have my own. He was playing with his site on the weekend, and it went down for a while, so the redirection for my site went with it. My URL is now http://www.randomknits.net/. The redirection generally works, but you may like to update your links. If you wish to update your bloglines subscription, the new one is
As I said, the old URL usually works, but you might like to update with the new one :)
May 08, 2005
Happy Mothers Day! :)
I hope you are all having a lovely day. I got breakfast in bed and some lovely gifts.
"Twisted Sisters Sock Workbook" and the Gwen Stefani CD. Now I know why Em told me she wanted my gift, LOL!
We went up and visited my mum this morning, and now (hopefully) a lazy afternoon stretches before me.
Well, we went along to the "Fashion Parade" at Spotlight on Friday night. It was advertised as 6-8pm. Em has dance lessons until 6pm, so we didn't get up there until 6.20pm. By then, the fashion parade was over! Probably a good thing, as I didn't see anything I wanted to knit ;)
I did buy a new Cleckheaton pattern book.
The yarn the book calls for is a new season yarn from Cleckheaton Australia, called Studio Mohair. It's 50% mohair, 50% acrylic, and inexpensive. All the yarn was 20% off, so it was only $4 a ball, but I didn't buy a single ball. It's not that I didn't like any of the patterns. I bought the book specifically for these two patterns in particular.
The jumper has a lace pattern in it, which is difficult to see here.
But none of the available colours grabbed me, and I thought of the stash at home, so I resisted. I've got the book now, I can always sub with something different later.
Now I'm off to read the Sunday paper, and knit!
May 06, 2005
A bit of a fragmented post today, as that's how I'm feeling.
The sewing for Em's dance concert has started, so for the next 6 months I'll be buried in fabric, elastic, sequins and thread. It seriously cuts into my knitting time, and I'm almost always distracted, thinking of how to make making a pattern that fits 10 different kids, and still looks in proportion. Bleurgh.
However, I have been knitting a bit. I finally finished the Pink Pullover and the Baby Vest, but I keep forgetting to get Em to put the jumper on, so I still don't know how well (or badly) it fits, LOL!
Em likes it, and is happy with the star, so lets hope that it does fit nicely!
The baby vest. It just needs to have some ribbon threaded through the holes at the neck, but I'm still undecided. I don't really like the idea of ribbons around babies necks.
And the Bearfoot socks have progress!
The colour is very inaccurate - this close up is much closer.
I have also started the Baby Garter Stitch Wrap Top from Simple Knits for Chershed Babies, in Baby Alpaca.
I do have a problem with some of the gauges given in this book. I'm sure that somewhere years ago, I read that garter gauge is pretty much always twice as many rows as there are stitches. For example, 20 stitches x 40 rows = 10cm.
It's one of those quirky facts that I picked up somewhere, and it's always worked for me.
None of the gauges given in this book meet that "rule". And I can't get gauge.
The gauge for the wrap top is 28sts x 48 rows = 10cm. My row gauge is short. The gauge for the Garter stitch cardigan is 22sts x 36 rows = 10cm. Couldn't get that either. So, either I'm wrong or they are. It doesn't really matter, but it's throwing some of my shaping off.
My local Spotlight store is having a "Winter Fashion Parade" tonight. I think it's just Patons and Cleckheaton new season designs and yarns being shown, but they are offering 10% off any yarn bought, and they are giving away a hamper full of yarn and a pattern book, so I might go along, but I haven't really decided yet.
And apparently my brain is giving up at an early age. My DH has had some really good laughs at my expense this past week or so.
My birthday is coming up in a few weeks. And I've had the usual "What do you want for your Birthday?" questions. (Am I the only one who hates being asked that? I never know what I want). Somehow I had got it into my head that I was turning 35. I was musing on 35, thinking how I wasn't really concerned about turning 35. I'm only turning 34. I was making myself a year older. I truly thought I was already 34. DH got a giggle from that.
Then, last Saturday Em had a dance competition. It was at Seven Hills, maybe 45 minutes drive away. I was at the top of our suburb, and I turned left. I drove for maybe a hundred metres, and said "Good Lord, I've gone the wrong way, I need to go through Liverpool!" and turned around. DH and Em laughed at me. It got worse. I drove 100 metres in the other direction, and realised that I had been right the first time, and had to turn around again. I hadn't even made it out of our suburb.
Senility. Pass the chocolate. Who are you? ;)
A cute pic of Twinkie to finish. This is how she cleans her ears.
It's especially cute when she topples over backwards, LOL!
May 04, 2005
We had a drama yesterday. There was a quick blackout, and then I couldn't turn my computer back on. I wasn't sure if my computer had caused a surge and then there was a blackout, or if the blackout had killed my computer. Panic ensued, phone calls to DH, who wasn't answering the phone at first. Finally get a hold of him, and he says he'll look at it when he gets home.
I never thought I'd be glad that he keeps all those computer bits lying around.
The power supply had blown, so he pulled out a spare and replaced it. Thank goodness - I was having visions of selling the furniture for computer money ;)
Norma had a competition recently, and I won! My prize arrived yesterday.
Sock yarn! Yum. It's a gorgeous colour, not blue as the pic suggests, but shades of purple. It's called Gypsy Rose. And there was a funky little notepad. Em hasn't seen it yet, and I don't intend to let her see it - or she'll steal it! She's a notepad-aholic, and would adore it, but it's mine! ;)
I finished a little baby set in Cotton Ease.
Jill sent me a ball of this ages ago to try, but it was still in the stash. The set is from Simple Knits for Cherished Babies (again!), and it called for Rowan All Seasons Cotton. The Cotton Ease gauge was pretty much the same, so I subbed it (sacrilege!)
What a pity this is being discontinued. I quite enjoyed using it. I could see this pattern becoming one I'd knit for new babies, in this yarn. It's easy and quick to knit, I like the finished item, and it's easy to care for. I like the colour range for babies, too. Trust me to find it just as it's going!
I still have to get some buttons for it. Somehow though, I think the hat is going to be way too big. It's the same size as the pattern, but it just looks huge for a 6 month old baby. The sleeves seem to look very long too.
What's next? Not sure yet.. stay tuned :)
May 02, 2005
Just a quick entry today, because I've been on canteen duty all day at school, and I only have an hour until I go pick Em up, and I'm way behind on the housework.
Tap Dogs was fantastic!
And here are the pics some of you asked for.
Here's the black dress. It's made from Linen, but it's a lovely soft non-crinkle linen. It's a New Look pattern, 6631.
I believe that I have mentioned that I detest having my picture taken. I think I was in the middle of a smart-arse remark to my DH when he took this, but it was the one I liked best, LOL!
The dress with the coat. The fabric for the coat is a wool blend, the pattern was Butterick 6337. I never know what to do when the camera is pointed at me, and DH takes forever to take a picture, so I feel like I've got a fake smile on my face for ages.
And here is a pic of Em and I, just because I like this picture. She wore my Flower Basket Shawl :)
And the mention of the Flower Basket Shawl is about as much knitting content as I can manage today!
May 01, 2005
Jussi tagged me for the book meme, so here we go! (The Knitting Book Queen? ;)
1)Total number of books in your house:
Too many! We're all voracious readers, and there are bookshelves full, and boxes and boxes in the garage. Several hundred, at least. Pretty much everything Stephen King ever wrote, most of Anne McCaffrey's books. Everything by David Eddings, Knitting books, DH's computer books, Anne Rice's books. When DH moved in we got rid of a lot because of the doubles. Em has a heap all by herself. She reads above her age level, and these days is more likely to ransack our bookshelves. Lately we borrow more books from the library than buy them, because they've become so ridiculously expensive. A new release paperback here in Australia is over $20 now.
2)The last book you bought was:
Last books I bought were from Amazon, and they were knitting books. "Simple Knits for Cherished Babies", the Harlot's book, "At Knit's End", "The Sweater Workshop" and "Simple Socks: Plain and Fancy". Hard to find good knitting books in Australia, many of them aren't released here, so we have to order them, or get them from Amazon, and even with International shipping, it's usually cheaper to order them from Amazon.
3)What was the last book you read before reading this?
I'm halfway through a series by Robin Hobb, The Farseer Trilogy. I'm up to Book 2, "Royal Assassin" It's a re-read, I love Robin Hobb's books. Fantasy genre.
4)Write down 5 (or 6) books you often read or that mean a lot to you.
Hmm.. I met DH online, through a David Eddings newsgroup. Loved the books, but that adds to the sentimentality. Mind you, the latest books by him have been total crap.
I have a really old Reader's Digest "Guide to Knitting, Crochet and Needlework" that was my mothers. My mother passed away when I was only 8, and I don't have a lot of her things. It's from the 70's, full of gaudy, tacky granny squares and loud patterns, but I'll never part with it, even though the spine had fallen off, and it's getting a bit ratty looking.
"Gone With The Wind". Old favourite from years back. Em's middle name is Scarlett. I wish I'd named her Scarllet as her christian name, there are far too many Emily's in the world.
No others spring to mind. I love all my knitting books, and there's usually at least one out. Right now there's Socks, Socks, Socks and Simple Knits for Cherished Babies on the coffee table. I've asked for sock books for Mother's Day and my Birthday. (Both this month). I couldn't think of anything else I wanted for my birthday, except sock books and sock yarn. I'm a woman of simple pleasures ;)
Twinkie just likes to be comfy.
Off to Tap Dogs this afternoon!