June 30, 2005
I finished the lacy baby hat and bootees.
Well, sort of. Unseamed, unblocked, but the knitting bit is done :) The cardi still remains unseamed too. Becuase I was impatient to start this.
The STYK toddler cardi. The lace trim is done first, then stitches picked up to knit the body. I love it already :)
I should also admit that Giraffe is all done, too, just awaiting seaming.
I'm having one of those rush, rush weeks. I don't feel like I'm having enough time to sit and relax lately. School holidays start next week, so I'll get a few sleep-ins at any rate, and no rushing off to pick Em up from school, and no dance lessons. However, there are two dance competitions on, with the *big* one for the year on this Saturday. She is only competing one dance, her newest tap routine, but it's in a rather large field of excellent entrants, so we're all getting a bit nervous :)
Sewing for the dance school continues apace, however I have been neglecting it a little of late - I'll regret that in a few weeks!
Twinkie got a letter yesterday. It's a little disconcerting to open the letterbox to find a letter addressed to the family rabbit. It was a letter from the vet, reminded us she's ready for the next round of flea treatment.
She'd rather not know.
June 28, 2005
Still plugging away on the lacy baby cardi, however it is blocking as we speak :)
It's a damp day today, horrible for blocking, but I'm not complaining, because we desperately need the rain. I started the little matching hat.
Yes, it's inside out! The brim will turn up when it's done. After this I'll do the bootees, then I can start the little pink toddler cardi.
Here's the STYK/In The Bag Handknits booth from the craft fair on the weekend.
That's Janette at the register. She has started her own blog, which can be found here. Go say hello. :)
Twinkie is trying to kill me. I picked up the cord of my overlocker an hour or so ago, and got electrocuted. She had chewed a hole in it for me. I think it's because of this.
She has free rein of the house, except for under the beds. Of course, her favourite place is under the beds. I don't think she expected to get caught ;)
June 26, 2005
Well, after many, many mishaps, we made it to the Quilt and Craft Fair :)
We had intended to catch the train, so we got up at any unhealthy hour for a Saturday, got dressed, ate and headed to the train station. I thought it seemed very quiet, but just assumed that all the smart people were still at home in bed. Nope. Cityrail were doing maintenance on our train line, and there were buses running instead. Erk. I half seriously considered going home right then. But we decided to drive into the city instead.
So in we went, parked at the casino where it used to be cheap parking, but isn't anymore, we discovered. Then down to the exhibition centre. After Jan's post the other day, I ws expecting a mile long line, but there was no line at all, it was great :)
The fair itself was pretty good. A *lot* of quilting booths, a good number of scrapbooking and needlework booths. There were a number of knitting booths, but not too many. Bendigo Wool Mills were there, they still had some sock yarn at $3 a ball, but I resisted. Yay me! ;) It was a cotton blend, and the colours were pretty, but it just didn't grab me. They had some yarn for $2 a ball, but again, nothing that jumped out at me, so I didn't buy anything. Emily bought a ball of off white angora blend for $3. She intends to dye it. :)
Touch were there, but nothing grabbed me, no sock yarn left. A few vendors that had a great deal of novelty yarns. One vendor who had some *gorgeous* baby alpaca, and some Noro. I considered the alpaca for a while, but couldn't think of a project, so I left it there. I think DH was astounded at how much I didn't buy, LOL!
Then we got to STYK and In The Bag Handknits. Janette and Bronwyn were *lovely*! Gorgeous stock, and just genuinely nice ladies. I bought stuff at this booth :)
The cutest cardigan I've seen for a toddler. It can be seen in better detail here. I'm going to make this for DH's cousin's toddler. Zara, which I haven't knit with before, but feels lovely in the ball. As soon as I finish the lacy baby cardi, I'm going to start this. Winter of Lace, indeed :) I got one of the needles I need for my hat, too. The other will be in stock soon, but I don't need it for a while, not until I get that last ball of wool, anyway.
Emily got a ball of pink thick and thin yarn from STYK, and came home immediately to cast on a scarf.
The only other thing I bought all day was this.
A cashmere scarf kit. I need another scarf (or another project for that matter) like I need a hole in the head, but it's cashmere! They had a scarf there for touchy-feelies, and I knew I had to have it. :)
So that was the big day. After the fair, we headed up to the sequin wholesaler for diamontes and beads for Em's new costume, then went for a wander, and crepes for lunch, yum :)
Today, my feet hurt, but it was worth it. Em and her duo partner competed their jazz duo dance at Penrith this morning. It's the second time they've competed with it, and they won it for the second time. Yay girls!
Twinkie would like someone to come outside and play, even if it is cold and wet and getting dark.
Sorry, no takers here.
Now I'm off to knit so I can finish the baby cardi, and then start the pink cardi :)
June 24, 2005
Branching Out. Not a lot done, about 8 repeats. I try to do one repeat of this before I start on anything else.
The lacy baby cardi. It's going very well :)
This is the back, completed, and I'm halfway up the fronts.
I'm up to the armhole shaping here. Then it's just the sleeves, and the borders. I wish I could knit up all my garments this quickly!
Excitement abounds here - tomorrow we're off to the Quilt and Craft Fair. Jan went earlier in the week, and she mentioned Bendigo Wool Mills, Touch from NZ and cheap sock yarn! I'll also finally get to meet Janette from STYK. And pick up some needles for my Fair Isle hat. :) Must remember that I'm still paying for the car repairs and to try to show some restraint ;)
We were planning a trip into town anyway, so we're making a day of it. I'm really looking forward to it.
I did the grocery shopping today - I hate the grocery shopping. Anyway, I had a helper to unpack when I got home.
Guess which bag had her favourite vegetables in it?
June 22, 2005
I got mail!
All that is for this.
I saw Monica's and thought that it would be a pretty good way to start Fair Isle. There's only 14 colours. Yes, 14. :)
Monica offered to get the kit for me, but then she told me about the Shetland Wool Brokers, and the price was similar, but I got full balls from there. Thanks, Monica!
Only trouble is that they were out of colour 135, so I'm waiting for that ball - and of course, that's needed in row 10. Have I mentioned that I know nothing about Fair Isle?
Finished baby clothes!
Baby Boy's cardi and hat set.
First cardi for baby girl. I started this one way back, and all I had left was the bands. I'm not happy with the button placement, but I'll leave it, or I'll never stop fussing with it. Besides, I'm also knitting her this.
It's a Cleckheaton pattern, from the same book as the blue outfit. I'm changing it a little, though. It calls for crochet around the edges, and I can't crochet. So I'm just doing garter bands. I've got some mauve 4ply stashed, so I'm using that. I like lacy babies :)
The tiara didn't stay there for long, but I proudly present Princess Twinkie!
June 20, 2005
My freakin' car is playing up again and is in the shop. I tried to start it this morning, to go out and run errands, and I heard this horrible whining noise. It wasn't Em, she'd already left for school ;)
So off I go to the mechanics. Turns out it's the alternator. And they need to get the replacement in from another state, it's not repairable. And it'll cost almost $500. Oh, and the left c/v shaft is gone, and it's long overdue for a service. I'm expecting a $1000 bill. As if I have that kind of money just laying about.
Of course, there's a craft and quilt fair on this weekend that I wanted to attend. And really shouldn't, because the money is needed elsewhere. Sigh. Grumble.
Of course, none of the errands were run, instead I had to walk home from the mechanics, arrange to borrow my sisters car for an hour to pick Em up from school and get her to dancing, arrange for someone else to pick her up from dancing. And I am the laziest soul alive when it comes to exercise, and I had to walk home from the mechanics (20 minutes), to my sister's place of work (40 minutes) and home from the shopping centre (another 20 minutes).
Now I find out that I'll be carless until Wednesday at the earliest. At least I should get some knitting done!
So I have to try to save money. Am I the only one who instantly wants to race out and shop when that happens? ;)
June 18, 2005
Mad baby knitting is happening all of a sudden :)
I have a friend whose baby was due last week, and DH's cousin's wife was due in around 2 weeks.
My friend had a baby boy on Tuesday, and the newest addition to DH's family tree arrivd yesterday, a baby girl.
I started this yesterday morning, it's now 8pm Saturday, so I'm making good time. This is the same cardigan that I made earlier in th eyear for another baby boy. I like this pattern :)
It knits up quick, and I love the little stripes - badly in need of a blocking, as you can see. Still thinking about what to knit for DH's cousin's baby. I have the garter stitch cardigan from Simple Knits for Cherished Babies that I started earlier this year. It just needs bands, and I bought a ball of pink yarn today to do that, but I think I will knit her a lacy cardi too.
Everything else is on the back burner now until these are done!
June 16, 2005
It's cold here today! Well, cold in Sydney terms, anyway :)
I was hanging the washing out this morning, and my fingers were going numb! The sun is out now, and it's warming up a bit, but winter is definitely here.
I finished Em's gloves, but I can't show you, because she wore them. Looks like I got them done just in time :)
Look what arrived in Tuesday's mail!
My Lorna's Laces order from Lisa. Two skeins each of Hawaii, Girly Stripe and River. Yum!
I started Branching out, too. It gave me some grief, becuase I couldn't decide what yarn to use. Originally, I had planned to use some Bendigo Wool Mills 2ply wool that I have in a pretty pink shade, but it was just too fine. I have some nice pink beads that look lovely with it, and I had planned to put a bead in the centre of each leaf, but to get it too look the way I wanted, I had to go down to around a 3mm needle, and the scarf was too narrow. So, that plan has been shelved, and I think I may try to design a scarf myself for that yarn and the beads.
Then I remembered that I have some Anny Blatt Fine Kid stashed.
I bought this over a year ago, and couldn't decide what to do with it. I've just kept it for petting so far ;)
The colour is "Iris", and it is 51% wool and 49% Kid Mohair. I'm liking this :)
I'm knitting it on my 4mm Lisa G needles. I usually use circular needles, but for scarves and lace, I like these needles. And they're pretty!
You choose your ends, and pick the colour of the needle and end. These are my 4mm ones.
I have other sizes, with sparkly things on the ends too :)
Twinkie always comes outside with me when I hang out the washing. I have a decrepit old table out there that I sit the basket on, and Twinkie has claimed under the table as her own. She has dug up the dirt to her liking, and likes to sit in the dirt to watch me hang the clothes. This morning she decided to have a roll in the dirt.
Lucky it's dry dirt that I can brush off, because I don't think she'd like a bath :)
June 13, 2005
Haven't I been slack in posting lately? I used to post every single day. Unfortunately, I've been busy doing things other than knitting, and nothing interesting enough to post about. Unless, of course, you all want to listen to me whine about the state of the house, and all the housework I've been doing ;)
Giraffe is still not finished. I'm afraid she's been neglected.
As you can see, I've started the neckband. I think my fears of running out of yarn are groundless. I still have this much yarn.
I don't want the neck to be as long as the original anyway, so I think I have plenty of yarn.
I have also been knitting Em some gloves. We head out for her to catch her bus at 7.30am, and it's been getting pretty cold in the mornings. Because she is at the Catholic school, they insist that full school uniform should be worn at all times. Yes, even on the bus on the way to school. Any extras, such as scarves and gloves must be in the school navy blue.
She managed to convince my mum to knit her a navy blue "feathers" scarf, but she wanted matching gloves. My mother insists that gloves are too hard for her, so I got that job.(She did try, but she can't follow a pattern, and the final product gave everyone a giggle. I should have taken a picture ;)
So I got the job of the gloves. None of the local discount stores had Navy blue feathers this year, so I had to go to Spotlight, and of course the Navy blue was only available in the dearest brand they had. So her gloves are having "Feathers" cuffs, but the rest is done in Cleckheaton Country.
She loves them. I knit the cuff and forgot to count rows as I went. Now I can't see the rows clearly enough to count them for the second glove. Anyway, that's what I've been working on.
I also joined the Summer of Lace knitalong.
Mind you, it'll be a Winter of Lace for me. Still considering exactly what to knit. I bought some Peruvian Baby Cashmere from Elann a little while back with the intention of knitting some lacy gloves for me, maybe I'll do those. I'm also planning on knitting "Branchin Out" at some point, and I have the pattern and yarn for "Faina's Scarf" too. I've also been planning on going through my stich libraries and maybe designing my own lace scarf. I've had a"A Gathering of Lace" on my Amazon wishlist for a while, maybe I'll buy that for myself, and get even more ideas. :)
Em fed Twinkie her breakfast this morning. She doesn't move as quickly as I do, and Twink got impatient.
The comic relief that this rabbit provides is priceless.
June 09, 2005
Finally, I've packed up the Dulaan project offerings!
Seven hats and six pairs of mittens! :) I had planned more, but as usual, I went astray. The parcel will go out tomorrow. I have a few things here waiting to be mailed off to different people. Unfortunately, postage in Australia can be pretty expensive, and my purse hasn't been up to it. :(
An update on the other news, the police guard finally left an hour or so ago. Neighbourhood rumour has it that apparently they were pretty sure the lady had died of natural causes, but there were a few things that didn't look quite right, so until an autopsy was done, it was being treated as suspicious. Everything must've been okay, because an hour or so ago, they pulled down all the police tape and left.
Things are apparently back to normal. Not that things are ever "normal" around here! ;)
Twinkie has found a new favourite spot.
It's best to check before you yank out a kitchen chair now :)
June 08, 2005
I finished my Dublin Bay socks :)
The police are still at the neighbours. The house is locked up, but the tape is still there, and there has been a police guard there constantly. No-one knows what has happened yet.
And finally, this is what happens when you are trying to fill up an impatient bunny's hay bowl.
June 07, 2005
I was going to blog about how I seem to be having a slump, feeling off colour, uninspired, no time to knit, sorry about no blogging, blah, blah, blah.
Instead this has been my morning.
This morning an ambulance arrived at one of the neighbouring villas. A half hour later, the police arrived and the ambulance left, empty. The people living there only moved in recently, and I don't know them. Then more police arrived.
Half an hour ago, the forensics arrived.
I have no idea what has happened or is happening, but there are currently two police cars, a police van and a forensics van in my driveway.
It's bound to be bad news :(
Edit Shortly after I made the post, they put police tape all around the house, and the detectives arrived. A little later, there was a detective at my door. The lady who lived there had died :( She wasn't old at all, maybe in her mid forties. Her son went off with the police, but came back later on. The detective said that they were pretty sure that she died of natural causes, but they had to investigate. The son apparently has some mental health issues. The ambulance first arrived at 11am this morning, the police cars were in and out all day, and most of them left at around 6-6.30pm. It's now almost 9pm, and there is still police tape around the house, and a police van outside, but the house is dark. I'm not sure where the son went, but I did see the police round up her two little dogs. At one point, there was 2 big forensics vans, 2 small forensics cars, 3 unmarked cars, a police car and a police wagon in the driveway.
I hope she died peacefully.
June 05, 2005
I've been making progress on my Dublin Bay socks.
I'm now up to the heel flap on sock number 2, and really enjoying these :) And I just luurvve Lorna's Laces! This is the colourway Purple Club that Jill sent me. The pooling and flashing doesn't bother me, in fact I enjoy watching the way the colours come out :)
And in regards to Lorna's, I was bad. In a good way ;)
Lisa has been doing wonderful things for us poor, deprived Australians and has got in a nice little packet of Lorna's Laces yarn. I stuck to sock yarn, ordering River, Girly Stripe and Hawaii. (Only 3 colours! I was reasonably good, LOL!)
This brings the sock yarn count to 39 pairs. It could be worse. I think I may give up housework to knit socks :)
I'm not quite sure what she expected to find in there!
June 02, 2005
Warning - Long and picture heavy post ahead!!
Australia has it's own knitting magazine, called "Creative Knitting". The ninth issue has just been released, and in the past, this hasn't really been a great magazine. Unreliable release dates, crappy patterns, crappy articles. At $10 an issue, it's been a toss up as to whether it's worth the money or not. There's been editorial problems, but apparently there is now a new editor. They put out an entire issue devoted to scarves. They put out an issue rehashing the first four issues. They have had ugly patterns, they have featured hard (if not impossible) to get yarns. In the past they have left out sizing information, tension recommendations, some instructions. They frequently feature overseas companies and knitters. I have nothing against overseas companies or knitters, but I get them in overseas magazines.
The ninth issue arrived yesterday, and I thought I'd review it, so people could decide whether to spend their money or not.
First off, there are few articles. One is a profile of Kaffe Fassett. Next is a feature called "January in Knitted New York". Not quite sure why that's pertinent in an Australian magazine. Next up is the ladies patterns. Quite like some of these for a change!!
This is the cover page for the "Jumpers and Tops"
I have a beef with this. I like the cardi. But the pattern's not in this issue. Don't know if it will appear in a future issue. Not quite sure why it's on this page.
First pattern is this.
Meh. Zhivago is a locally available yarn, 50% Tencel, 50% acrylic. I don't mind the yarn, but I've only used it for gloves and a beanie for DH. The sweater is okay. Nothing flash, it has a few neckline options (Crew neck, Turtle collar, roll collar and Cowl collar).
Next is this.
They have actually called this a "Classic Edge to Edge Jacket". What the? It's gross, I'm sorry. Just my opinion, of course. The yarn is called Tufty. Another local Patons offering. It's 92% acrylic, 8% nylon and 100% yuck. It's shaggy feathers type stuff. I think even the model looks fluffy in this. No one looks slim in these yarns, people.
Another Jo Sharp offering. I quite like it, but I don't like warm but sleeveless things. What's the point? If it's cold enough for the sweater, my arms would be cold. And if it's warm enough for bare arms, the vest is too hot. Anyway, it's made in Rare Comfort Kid Mohair and Silkroad Aran Tweed.
Called "Classic Comfort". Why do they call all the floofy yarn patterns "Classic"? Anything but. Patons Feathers and Zhivago again. Check out the colour range in the Feathers! Will this crap ever go away? Em loves it. I hate it, with a passion. The only knitters I know in real life all knit nothing but scarves with this stuff. And then they drop stitches and ask me for help. Forget it, the stitch is gone forever. And then they ask why I'm not knitting feathery scarves. Sigh. Sorry, I hate this cardi.
Next is a felted poncho thingy which is different, it's noice, it's unusual. (Sorry, aussie joke). It doesn't picture well (it's very dark, and poorly photographed), but it's interesting. It's made with silk, wool top, slubby yarn, and you use your arms for knitting needles. Sorry, you have to see it to understand it.
Not a feathery novelty yarn, but a novelty yarn, nonetheless. It's Cleckheaton Deluxe Velvet Ribbon. Not for me, but the pattern is okay, I guess.
There is an obsession with novelty yarn. "Edge to Edge Jacket with Feathers and Ostrich Trim". More Patons, more Feathers, plus Ostrich. Oh, and Totem. Why couldn't they leave out the Feathers and the Ostrich? Oh it has a little matching handbag with feathery stuff on it, too. I might make the cardi without the floof.
I love this! Jo Sharp again, in Silkroad Aran Tweed again. Why isn't this one called "Classic"? Simple, attractive, nice yarn. My favourite.
The last ladies pattern is this -
A poncho made with slubby yarn from Marta's Yarns. Not bad, but I'm not really a poncho person, myself. Nice yarn :).
Next are the kids knits.
The less said, the better. Creative Knitting has a record of bad kids and babies patterns. One of the previous issues managed to make a baby look like a hobbit. Unintentionally (I think). I like the striped sweater made from Patons Inca. I usually like kids knits, but I don't like these. There's a yellow sweater from Katia Idea, very badly pictured short overalls, beret and shoes set (the blue and white)
which claims to be from 8ply (DK) cotton, but is a 4ply tension, and a double breasted hooded jacket in a fluffy yarn, trimmed in Loopy mohair (The red). It's knitted in Dive "Odeon" which I've never heard of.
Then there is an article about knitting creatively. It's really a book review of "Freeform Knitting and Crochet".
Accessory patterns are next, and these are okay.
An angora neck warmer and a diagonal silk scarf. Not to my taste, but nice yarns, both from Marta's.
Birkenstock socks. With separate big toes.
Next is an article about the Isle of Skye. Interesting, but we have sheep in Australia. Are there no stories here?
Initially, I thought this issue was an improvement on previous ones. Now that I've sat and analysed it for the blog, I'm disappointed. I'd like to see more articles, more feature stories based in Australia. I'd like more how-to articles. I'd like a lot less fluff!!
See why we Aussies order so much off the internet? Our commercially available yarns are all feathery, novelty stuff, apart from a few smaller sources, and Jo Sharp.
Apparently the new editor has taken over from the next issue. I hope the magazine improves. Quite frankly, it doesn't come close to the US based knitting magazines.
And now that I've just run the magazine down to the ground, I have an extra (new) copy of the Creative Knitting "Scarf Feature" that I'd like to trade for Knitpicks Sock Yarn if anyone is at all interested!
June 01, 2005
Thank you to everyone for all the birthday wishes :)
I hd a lovely day, most of which I spent on the lounge, in front of the TV, knitting. Not a single item of housework was done, not a single dance costume was sewn. :)
I got some lovely gifts from DH and Em. "Folk Socks" by Nancy Bush and some Twinkletoes sock yarn.
I think the colours are Blue Lilacs and Baby Crocus. I also received the Rob Thomas CD, a National Geographic DVD about Polar Bears, new slippers and some dark chocolate. I love Dark Chocolate. I got all excited when I heard the US was bringing out Dark Chocolate M&M's for Star Wars. When our special edition Star Wars M&M's came out, I raced to the supermarket, but all we got were plain old crispy M&M's in a new package. Ripped off! (The only M&M's we get are plain, peanut and crispy)
Anyway, I had a lovely day. :)
Em made me a birthday card.
And as you can see, I finished the Dolly dress. Nada made a good observation when she compared it to knitting with styrofoam. One more to go, thanks heavens they're reasonably quick!
So today was back to the sewing grind. This is what Twinkie does every single time I lay out fabric to cut.
I'm sure she thinks she's helping. She has nearly lost one of her ears before, coming up close to see what I am doing, and laying her ears on the cutting line. Luckily I've learnt to pay close attention ;)