Wednesday, November 29, 2006
I wanted to get some 5mm needles for Chrissie crafting, but also check out their range of Cottons. Ooooh they certianly did not disappoint!!
Even the carpark had this ute parked, with the GORGEOUS dogger inside actually leaning so far out of the car on patrol for his/her human, their little paws were up on the window sill! When I cruised up and got out, the dog-a-log put crossed paws on the sill and rested their little chin on them! Awwwwwww!! Awesome looking dude, brilliant colours and longer fur than a normal kelpie - more like alsatian fur or so. Didn't turn out so well in the photo against the seat cover, but I had to get a picture - so cuute! So charismatic!!
When I came out post-purchasement, dogger was lying beside the car, watching the street (and probably still on human patrol) but not running off or making a nuisance, just chilling out next to the car! Dogger'd obviously hopped out (though it was a high ute) and found it cooler waiting down there!
Yes, those two little words up there ... 'post purchase'... I certianly did purchase! I had forgotten how LOVERLY the store is, and it's been a little while since I've been in there, a few months or so, and I've progressed a ways in my knitting since then, so I was enthralled by the alpaca, merino, silk, and all the cottons, the colours etc.. which never caught my interest before. I was a few months ago, much more agog at Point 5 Colinette and uber deliciously textured stand out yarns like that. So I very excited purchased some yarns (all I'm showing is the brown paper bag below - no more sneak peeks before Chrissie!), some 3.25mm Clover needles (soooo loooooong and skinny!!) and some tasty tasty 5mm addi natural circulars - mmmm so smooth, so dreamy...
The total came to a whopping $84 - all contained in that middle sized lovely brown paper bag (notice it bulging slightly at the bottom) *google eyed disbelief* I know - it adds up quick doesn't it!! But I rallied mysefl on my way to the counter when I hadn't been able to choose between all the lucious colours, that these are GIFT yarns! I'm making PRESENTS out of them! So it's ok to spend money on them, these knitted items will be given in the place of consumerist items - catfish? Plus $23 was for the needles so it's really only $60ish.. and that covers knitted items for ALLL the family and AALLL the friends!! Yay! :) Better get cracking then! I've started knitting an item in one of the yarns, and am EXTREMELY thrilled to bits with the colour - so electirc, so vibrant! Taken me about an hour to get half way through what I'm knitting, and I think I want to resize it... but I'm thinking once I have the basic patterns down and am familiar with the gauge I'm getting with which yarn on which needles I'll be all set to be a knitted gift item machine!!!
The weather lately has been heating up more and more towards the toasty Aussie summer, with gorgeous sunsets - like Monday's cloudy sunset below
But yesterday everything was all a little blustery and windy, the sky was white with clouds, all overcast and exciting! It built throughout the day, and at lunch time was like this outside work!
And then as I was driving from work to a friend's place to catch up - it DID start raining!! Yayy!! Not much thunder or lightening, but blustery monsoonal wind gusts!
We were trying to get in to a nice italian joint for dinner, but they were booked out, we could only sit alfresco, as we stood outside testing the weather to see if it was tolerable to eat outside, every time we thought it would be ok a HUGE gust of wind would blow sand and leaves up and into our mouth and all over! Crazy! Then a chair across the street got blown off down the path so we decided NO! NOT ok to eat alfresco tonight!!
I do love a good storm though *grin*
Tuesday, November 28, 2006
I'm knitting this in the Anchor yarns I posted a while back, and have bought some other colours in the cotton yarn too - super delicious! So so fun to knit up, and to my absolute delight the finished knit actually has a sort of shiny shimmer to it! I've been covetting the KnitPicks cotton for that very shimmery reason and was bummed they don't post to Oz, but now they don't need to because I've found fabulous ANCHOR YARNS and I LOVE THEM!!! Wheeee!! Of course, Anchor don't seem to do solid colours, only the variagated.. but that's a small issue and shan't mar my excitement and glee!
I started knitting this mysterious item last night, but skoot and I were both completely knackered so when he headed to bed I did too and sat there knittering away, determined to get halfway on my first try before going to sleep. It was a hot night, you can see his tootsies in the background sticking out from under the blankie and our wicked awesome big fan whirring away making my cast on tail shimmer!! I've done some more at work today and will finish it today I'm pretty sure :) Yay! Fun fun!
Monday, November 27, 2006
Skoota went mountainbiking on Sunday, so up I got and saw them all off, then back to bed for a monster sleep in - niiiiiice!
Then off to Lunch at Mum's for Ben's birthday. Check out the funky clouds as I was driving home!
When I got back the boys had already arrived home, and one had brought his little girl over too. They all stayed over for dinner (lazy fish'n'chips - yum!), so we got out balloons, stickers and all sorts of fun things - we even did face painting!
In between all of this I managed to settle down and do some beading. I'd been wanting to make up some stitch markers for a while now, and picked up some awesome fun super psychedelic bright purple and green the other day for this purpose!
So I am well and truly ready for a nice relaxing evening tonight, bludge in bed with a movie on or something equally as easy! I has a crack at my socks last night too, but got a bit confused with the heel... It's a short row heel, and from reading the pattern sounds essentially the same as doing the short row toe.. but it says to put half of the stitches onto one needle for the heel, and the other half onto another needles for the instep. But then if I use a third needle to do the working... that's three needles and doesn't work like the short row toe! I'm so confuuuuused!! Am hanging out for the next S'n'B so Helen and Ann can set me right! In the meantime I'll work on Skoot's scarf, the Chrissie crafts and bide my time!
P.S. My spunky new shoes I got on Satdee.. wearing them today at work and LOVING THEM! So pointy! So buckle-y! So witchy! =D
Sunday, November 26, 2006
I have to say though, that yesterday flew past WAY too fast! And now today I'm feeling too exhausted to do any of the knitting, wool prep and spinning I had planned!!
We ran about somewhat madly yesterday before my cousin Shannon's wedding at 3. We ran to the big shops near by (I needed shoes to match my fancy dress), we ran to the hardware store, then we ran to the spinning guild (I needed to pay my wheel hire) and then zoomed on off to the beautiful Queens Park Gardens for Shannon and Scott's wedding. The service was fantastic, the day was gorgeous and super sunny - not a cloud in the sky, and Shannon looked stunning, I mean super stunnign, long classic white sleeveless dress, laced up the back - enchanting.
We headed up to Dad's place in between the ceremony and the dinner afterwards, as a good few hours stretched in between and it's way too far for us to go home in between.
So I got to have a lovely big play with the Chilli-mooser! Yay!
This of course covered our clothes in a layer of fashionable husky hair! But it was worth it - she's such a darling :) :) *smitten*
On to the dinner - everything was set out SO beautifully, the table (and bridsesmaid's dresses) were all in shades of blue, little name cards, and even a little box of chockie hearts for everyone, with Shannon & Scott's wedding Nov 25 2006 in silver writing on the front! Cute!!
So now I'm off to my brother's birthday bash! Driving up to Mum's so hopefully the sun won't beat through my window too much! Skoota's gone riding today, super excited to try out his new back wheel set up on his mountain bike, but the lads all came over uber early to pack the utes and go and all parked behind our cars in the drive!! WHen I got up to see them off I was too sleepy to realise! So I'll have to do some creative driving to get one of the cars out - the other one's completely penned in which is a bummer because that's the one with air con!!
In knitting news I am ready for the HEEL on my sock - how excting!! I joined a 'My First Toe Up Sock' kAL too, so that'll be awesome fun, and very timely! And how bizarre is this, I had a dream last night that I was over in the US and visited Pixie!
Must dash, have noticed the time! whooopsie!
Saturday, November 25, 2006
I'm part of the Spunky Eclectic Fiber-Of-The-Month club, wherein a regular fee is paid and a supply of whatever fancy hand-dyed colourway of fiber is for that month is sent out to clubbees!
I joined late October, and paid my fee -just- after the cut off point for October- so no October stash enhancement... but November... November's a whole new month altogether *exicted grin*
I'm an avid reader of Pixie Purls blog, and she also is part of this Spunky Eclectic group - it was through her blog that I found out about it! The only problem being... that I love surprises, LOVE surprises, so I don't wanna know what the colourway is before it arrives at my door step and I tear open the package! But of course as Pixie's in the US, which is where Spunky Eclectic's located - she will receive hers before me and blog about it! Argh! Hehehe So I know it's on it's way because I was reading Pixie's blog the other day and had to stop because I started to read the paragraph about her Spunky fiber arriving! And as I'm a fast reader, I had already seen that it's called 'Pie in the Sky' - how exciting!! Blues and browns and whites maybe??
So in excited anticipation, here is a picture of the blue blue sky when I was driving home yesterday and couldn't stop thinking about delicious fiber!!
Thursday, November 23, 2006
I found that if I flicked the locks out a little before popping them into the sink of warm soapy water, the bits of dirt and burrs came out on their own - I didn't need to play or pick at it, which I think caused the partial felting in my frist attempt - careful though I was! So I've sorted out my technique I think!! It's quite time consuming, but with a raw fleece like I have in those two big bags it seems the easiest way to get it prepped for non sticky lanolinny spinning. The colour of the cream wool is incredible all washed and spun up! Yum yum!
I'd spun up some of the grey wool straight out of the bag, with a little flick of course before spinning, but no wash or anything. I noticed that some little grass seeds and things were being spun into the yarn, and i knew that even if I washed it once I'd spun it, those little bits wouldn't be coming out in a hurry! So I think I'll start prepping the grey wool in the same way before spinning, giving it a gentle wash and rinse to take out any of those not so nice bits.
My plan is to fill another bobbin with the grey wool, then ply the two together, cream with the grey! The grey has variated shades of brown through it too -gorgeous! I think it'd make a lovely man's beanie or scarf on it's own. But I'm so curious to ply the two colours together, and they're both Corriedale so that'll be a nice continuity.
THEN I plan to over dye some skeins with some green dye to give it an overall hue - I'm so curious to see how that turns out I can hardly wait!
In other spinning news, somewhat more alternative...! Shveetie was fixing the water filter on our shower head and needed to rip open an old pillow to get out some of that fluffy plasticky pillow filling. When I got home he brandished it excitedly and said "I bet you could spin this!!" So Sure enough I hopped by the wheel and had a go - and it spun up just like normal fibre! Obviously it felt horribly synthetic, and had no flow of fibre or anything, just sort of fluffiness to feed though, but it certainly spun! I remembered a friend from work had given me some hot pink fibrey stuff that I had stashed away without a second thought to what I would use it for, and I figured, it's syntheticky too... what if I spin them together?? So I gave it a shot! hehe
Candy cane colours, and a little bit of purple wool when the white bobbin ran out when I was plying... funny stuff! It makes me keen to ply some handpainted yarn with some of the cream..... mmmm.... thinking, planning, schemings... ;)
Wednesday, November 22, 2006
This weekend is my prime example. It's the weekend of my cousin's wedding, which kicks off at 3pm for the ceremony, then continues with dinner etc.. at 6pm. I'm looking forward to it, of course, as a fun occassion to catch up with the family and share her exciting day!
Saturday also happens to be the fourth Saturday of the month... CityKnits group day!! 2pm onwards so I can't do that.. pooh pooh because it's porbably my fave knitting group (i've only been once before but love it!) and I wanted to catch up with Michelle, Helen, Ann and the rest of the knit-sibs, but meet Yin in person too! Gah! Nevermind! Hopefully there'll be another CityKnits before Chrissie :)
Saturday also happens to be the SPIN GUILD Saturday! And this one IS the last meet before Chrissie! I had to miss the last meet because we were lunching at Dad's place - a fabulous reason to miss something, lunch at Dad's is always great! - however I need to pay my wheel rental and wanted to catch up with all the ladies before Chrissie! We'll just have to slip in quickly on our way up to the wedding. I'm going to try to get some more lovely delicious rovings and things from the guild yarn store too, to keep me over Chrissie and New Year - particularly as I'm on holidays then - hoooray!!!
Saturday is also the Jacaranda Festival, where Helen and Ann from the SnB's I go to are holding a stall! I had planned to go along and support them there, maybe knit nearby to draw attention to the stall etc.. but alas! I won't be able to even squeeze in a smidgen of time there I don't think!
So I'm not ungrateful - I'm glad I have so many exciting and fun things in my life... I just need to work on the timing!! :P
One thing I always have time for... the Chilli-muffin *smitten grin*
Tuesday, November 21, 2006
Looking back at the archives, I realise I never mentioned once in September my embarkment upon this Colinettey journey. My lovely Mama's birthday is in September, and I was keen to knit her something very snuggly, luxurious and special, but knew I had little time to do it. So instead I took her to the most luxurious knitting store in the state- Calico & Ivy, and told her to look around, take her time, we would browse the store together and she was to pick out her favourite yarn and I would purchase enough to knit her a scarf! We had such a fabulous time looking through all the quilting and knitting bits and bobs, I was over the moon to discover they had wooden Addi Circs in so I grabbed some in a size ten. Mum chose the Colinette Point 5 in the MardiGras colour way.
I looked it up on the website, and they named it MardiGras as follows :
" Bright, vibrant and full of song. From hot reds with rhythmic flecks of Lapis blue, velvet purples and sunset yellows this shade takes a snapshot of the famous carnival. Mardi Gras, never has such a name had so much meaning... A celebration of humans fight for freedom, survival and happiness who's music vibrates streets... "
The colours evoke that celebratory festive feeling, almost revolutionary mix of colours - I like it!! I had bought some Colinette Point 5 in the Popsicle colourway a few weeks earlier in plans to make a scarf for myself, when I was in the store I saw the MardiGras and almost bought it to make something for Mum, but hesitated - I'm glad I did because even though she picked the same one anyway, it was so much fun trolling about the store together, and it added a nice touch having mum personally select her colourway and fibre too :)
Seeing as the Colinette Point 5 is such lucious yarn in it's own right, I didn't want to distract from the delicious slubbiness and texture of the fibre by using a stitch pattern or anything too intricate. I decided on a simple stockingette stitch scarf. I figured that would show off the flow of the yarn on the Knit side, and the colours would show well on the more bumpy purl side.
In my newbie Knitter excitement I didn't research stockingette stitch or any of it's properties - why would I need to? I soon realised that stockingette stitch is fine for knitting in the round, but try to make it lie flat? You're dreaming!
I felt really disappointed having knit over a foot already, here I've laid it out to take a photo..
But lie it the other way up and vvvrrrrrrrrrriiiiiiiiii!! It curls up!
I took one last look, a a photo to commemorate, the frogged it away, "rip it, ribbit ribbit ribbit" all the way to the frog pond. I was left with curly little coinette noodles - sad, but yummy!
I was so frustrated as I had a real idea in my mind's eye of how I wanted it to look. When Mum and I had visited Calico&Ivy I asked them if they stocked Debbie Stoller's StitchnBitch as I say they had the Happy Hooker Crochet book on display. The uber friendly lady behind the counter siad she didn't think so, but would check in the cupboards for me. She came back and said they don't have any for sale, but here's our old store copy, it's a little dogeared but would I like to buy it from them anyway? She'd only charge me ten bucks? Lemme tell you she didn't need to ask twice! I was SO excited to have scored a pre-loved copy, I LOVE preloved copies, I adore new copies too 'cause they feel so special and pristine and -mine- but wwith second/third hand copies I can just imagine all the knitted gifties and lovely woollen items people have been holding and creating while the pored over the words in the book. At this stage the two beginner knitting books I had ordered had also arrived, so I whipped out all three books and scoured the pages for info on how to make stockingette stitch lie flat. They suggested knitting a few ribs at the edges to make a little ribbed border, so that's what I tried! I knit and knit, knit some more, kept knitting... I had other projects on the go and other assorted work and play things that kept me from my knitting, so it was a slow process as I didn't ever feel I had much time to truly apply myself. But slowly my last ball of Point 5 Mardigras began to shrink...
It got smaller...
And smaller... (point of reference here on in is an Aussie 50c piece)
So tiny it wasn't even a ball any more, more a little rectangle that lives on the inside of balls of wool...
I was sitting outside in the afternoon enjoying the mild weather as I knit my last few stitches on Mum's scarf, the ball by then simply a string of yarn inching up towards my needles, and cast off :)
I was so excited I ran in and showed the skoota, absolutely thrilled to bits with my creation! It was curling like you wouldn't believe, becoming a tight little tube rather than the 25cm wide it was flat. But I'd had a word with some ladies at the SnB and was hoping that if I blocked it it would have a better chance of staying flat. So now all I needed to do was finish it off and block it then I could give it to lovely Mum!!
Before I had finished the scarf I had added tassels to my cast on edge, that way I was able to leave aside enough yarn to put the finishing tassels on at the end, but still make the scarf as long as possible, using up all the delicious yarn. Here are my first two tassels! Whee!!
I alternated which side up the tassels were, so the tiny nubs at the top of the tassels alternate from innies to outties - cute! She was all done. Now I needed some magic to keep her lying flat to show off the rib border and the stockinette in the centre. So I geeeeeently immersed her in a sink of warm soapy water. Swished her about ever so carefully..
Rinsed her off..
And lay her out to dry, rolled her in the towel and squeeezed all the water out
Then I set up two towels reaching all the way from one end of my 'studio' to the other and laid the scarf out in one long lime - it was so long!! Much longer than when it was dry! I carefully laid it out to the width I wanted it to be, and made sure it wasn't over stretched. It looked brilliant :) Laid out like that (sorry no photo) i could really see where I had changed from one skein to another. I had changed skein a few times to ensure a consistent colour, no blotchy patches, but even then I could see where I had changed, one skein had a lot more electric blue in it than the other. A non-knitter wouldn't notice, particularly when it is all wrapped up being worn, but it was interesting, and a good lesson to continue working like that, changing balls while knitting.
DOESN'T IT LOOK FANTASTIC!
I know it's rolled up like a liddle snail, but I love that shot:) So I wrapped the scarf up all pretty with tissue paper, and a bright bag, lots of little stars and sparkles inside too, which unfortunately were too hard to capture on camera, and off we went to bestow upon Mum!
And she loves it! Huurraaaaayy!!! :D :D :D
Here she is being attacked by Patsy the Dachsund with a cuddle onslaught! THe scarf still curls, despite all my efforts, but Mum was absolutely thrilled to bits with it, which is awesome and makes me feel all happy and bubbly! I had given her a sneak peek earlier when the scarf was only halfway through, I had it in my knitting bag with me once when we were all having dinner together :) She was super excited then and loved the idea with the tiny rib border. So the border didn't end up keeping it flat, but it looks magic anyway, and you can wrap it around yourself such that all the stitches can be seen anyway. And besides, Mum loves it and that's what counts :) Here she is with her two doggers a bit more calm! Patsy on the left, and Maggie on the right - awwwwww!
Thankyou Mum for all your inspiration throughout my life, and all the creativity and love we share, I so enjoy our times together and look forward to many more arting and crafting times together in the future! Much muchly love and cuddles to you :) XoXo
Monday, November 20, 2006
Sunday, November 19, 2006
We stayed at some friends' place last night close to the city, so that this morning, at crack of dawn, we headed to the south Perth foreshore to set up for the Red Bull Air Race 2006 event - as the final leg of the race being held in Perth - Hooray!!
(the title of this post is the sound the planes make zooming past!)
I'm absolutely knackered from sitting in the sun ALL DAY and all the packing car, unpacking car, carrying gear to foreshore, putting up marquee, setting up eskiees, chairs, fighting crowds, queuing in hot sun for porta-potty, bustling through PACKED crowds of people, packing bog up, taking marguee down, rolling up swag, taking gear back to car, unpacking when home.... gaaaaahhhhhh... Must.. need.. couch...
Plus there's the mild sun stroke =\
So I'm not keen to type for yonks about how awesome it was - I wants me couch, I wants me aloe vera and I wants me big honking bottle of water! But it truly was awe-some in the literal meaning of the word, so I wanted to post a few pics from the Official webpage, and a link to the qualifying movie they've got up. The Finals movie is up too, but I think the qualifying one shows off the race skills a bit better, and also shots of Perth and even some of Rottnest, our little Rotto island off the Perth coast. So here's that link - Seriously, it is worth the download, totally worth a look!! THe other videos are available through that link too so check out the variety of visuals :)
Basically dudes in these awesome little planes have to run a Formula One in the air obstacle course of zooming around over the river at 300km per hour, diving and slalomming through inflatable pylons - mental mental CRAZY good fun to watch!Despite all of the hot and tiring things above, it was a brilliant day :) My fantasteric Dad and lovely Pa (Dad's dad) came down too and joined us there on the waterfromt to watch the show. I can't begin to describe how packed it was though, which made it somewhat tricky! Shveetie and I set up at about 6:30 am, race didn't start til 12, pre-race stuff started at 10:30/11. So we got a good spot, but it didn't count for much by the time it all started and the place was swarming with people!! Luckily we'd set up the swag RIGHT at the edge of the shore so we had a spot with practically noone in front of us - but no shade unfortunately. If you're a foreinger and planning to come to Oz please PLEASE wear multiple sorts of sun protection and take it seriously. As you can see in the photos it was a pretty cloudy day, but I have fair skin so I came prepared - thick ghostly white layering of suncream, re-applied frequently, giant (and I mean GIANT- traditional sort of novelty hat giant) sombrero, PLUS spending the first part of the day under the marquee's forgiving shade AND LOOK WHAT HAPPENED! So truly, cover up, that goes for the rest of you Aussies too *grin* Learn from my mistake! I love LOVE spending time with Dad, so it was fantastic to hang out with him and watch the acrobatic planes acrobaterising. Add to that the bonus of having Pa come along!! Magic! Pa has done some extensive plane flying which I'm always interested in, so it was an excellent opportunity to hear his point of view and info on the planes zooming about us :) Yay!
phew, Okay, I'm well and truly ready to relax now!
oooh one last thing, In the llooong stretches of time until the racing started, and inbetween events, and afterwards when we were "winding down" at those friends' place with the crew, I knitted like the winf! The WIND I tell you! I did some sock work, scarf work on shveetie's scarf (until I got to the next black bit and didn't have the black with me!) and knit the entire purple square for a ommunal project I'm contributing a square to. That one was particularly high on my list as I have to mail it off to the US soon.
Right! Bludge time! heheh
A thankyou to lovely shveetie, Dad and Pa for the fun day :) xoxo
I went and did the grocery shopping today, and selected poorly in the shopping trolley stakes. The wheel were determined to veer me strongly off and away to the right into some poor unsuspecting shopper or precariously arranged product display.
But I did it! HahahaHA! Take THAT stinky rebellious shopping trolley! I may have developed some sort of muscular twitch from over compensation when steering - but at least the cupboards are no longer bare!!
No manner of shopping trolley misbehaviour could have marred my shopping trip however, as before I entered the grocery store I first dashed into the newsagency in search of one or two knitting mags I'd had my eye on... And they had it!!
I've been scouring all the newsagency I come across for the Interweave Chrissie edition and now I've found it!! Hurrah!! I'm slowly getting an idea of which newsagency stock which knitting mags - so I can stop the run-around a little!
In other equally exciting news, I popped into town on Thursday evening - managed to get away from work a bit early, yay! - and found this fabulous shirt!!
I would have loved it anyway for the design alone, but it actually DOES .... SCRATCH and SNIFF!! After a little scratchy scratchy a banana bubblegum smell wafts from the print! How awesome is THAT!?
I think I'll have to spot clean it though.. not sure how well the fragrancey print would hold up in the wash cycle.. hehe :)
And in FURTHER exciting news! I got an sms today from a very good friend of mine Bink, saying she has a surprise for me, but don't tell skoot... HOW INTRIGUING!! So i replied as such and she straight after phoned me up and CHUCKLED WITH GLEE!! WITH SUSPICIOUS SECRET KEEPING GLEE!!!! hahaha it was perfect!! The surprise, she told me, is that she has located the pressie I've been hunting down for shveetie for Chrissie! He doesn't read my blawg generally, but just to be sure I can't mention it, but I've been looking everywhere but this item is ALWAYS uber expensive. Uber SUBER duber expensive, $900 new, and $350 second hand :( So HOW BRILLIANT does that make loverly binkett for locating one for me!! I won't say how much for, again just in case shveetie sees, but let's just say I can definately afford some matching treats to go with it *grin*
So Bink... THAAAAANK YOOUUU!! You're FABULOUS and generous and thoughtful and LOVELY!! Prepare to be swamped with hugs when I see you next ;)
Wednesday, November 15, 2006
I MUST KNIT ONE!!!
Maybe two!! *pant pant with desperate excitement*
Granted I'd be wearing mine more in the style of the designer there, Katherine Summer O'Neal (the 2nd photo) but HOW AWESOME IS IT!!!
It's a free pattern from knitty.com, I was trolling through their archives just now checking out the designs and so on.. and there it is!!
I think I must knit it - what a fabulous first actual garment design! Wheeeeeeeeee!!!