Wednesday, December 31, 2008

First up - nevermind about commenting on the prvious post anymore as I have made the purchase! Woot Woot! More details on the new sewing machine to follow, but for now, I have yesterday's tease to make good on!

The pattern I ended up deciding would work wel with the mixed berry handspun yarn was Classic Elite's Sundance feather and fan Bag Bag  care of their free email newsletter with patterns. 

Mum's Handspun bagbag (3)

I'm very happy with how it turned out :) And thankfully, so is Mum!  

Mum's Handspun bagbag (1)

i was a little worried to begin with that the yarn was too rustic - it have a slight fuzz to it from being frogged out of the initial sock knit. But as I progressed it turned out to be fine, phew! 

Mum's Handspun bagbag

The colours are great! - courtesy of Amy  King's Spunky Eclectic style, as this fibre was from a long ago  fibre-of-the-month-club delivery. 

Mum's Handspun bagbag (2)

I'm feeling very enthused to knit more with handspun in 2009 and beyond - it's always such a satisfying feeilng to have been involved in so much of the process. Once I've spun  up all my lovely stashed pre-coloured fibre I want to get into dyeing up my own a bit more too.. oooh the possibilities!

This will be my last post for 2008 - Scrumptious and I are just having a quiet one together on the couch to see in 2009, and there's some tasty illusions and a fdun new ps3 game awaiting me - I must fly!! So wishing you all a most excellent, safe and celebratory evening and a lovely first morning of 2009! :)

I need your advice!

Super exciting! This news just in!

Soon I will be the proud new owner of my very own.. SEWING MACHINE!!

But first I need any advice you can throw at me on features I should look for, brands that are great, places to buy nice fabrics, any exellent books youv'e found have great patterns and good tips for beginners. 

But let's start with the sewing machine itself - 

At this early stage I imagine I'll be sewing clothing (starting basic) of all thicknesses of fabric, from thin cheese-cloth type through to faux fur, also i'll be making lots of smaller, more fiddley ornaments and such, sewing on paper also - who knows! The possibilities are endless! So I guess an all rounder would be great that can accomodate all of these potential needs.

I know I'd like a top loading bobbin, but apart from that I'm very much the amateur and don't know the ins and outs of what a good sewing machine should have to last me through the beginner stages but also through for years to come.

In terms of price point, I'd like to hit somewhere around the $400-$500AUD mark, and have heard good things so far about Elna so am leaning that way now...

I'm pretty (very!) keen to run right out and snap one up, so the sooner you could comment the better, please - I don't know how long I can hold out like a serene adult before the inner child bursts forth with extreme levels of rampant excitement and anticipation!

Thank you so much! :D

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Vanilla bean icecream with mixed berries

Sometimes it's the simple things that are most pleasurable. Paper still warm from the photocopier... Your first cuppa in the morning... Spending quiet time with your sweetie... I find the same goes for food. This is why classic recipes are handed down from generations, and the same simple taste combinations enjoyed despite the myriad of complex gourmet options out there now. While we were still up North a month or so ago I was indulging in some nice creamy vanilla bean icecream (stockinette socks in the round) teamed with the sharp tangy zest of mixed berries (handspun south west berries yarn) over the top - delicious!!
Vanilla Berry Socks Nov 08
In fact, I made it all the way to the first heel, and partway through the heel before I fully faced up to the reality that the handspun I'd made with Arthur - first yarn spun on Arthur in fact - while at Mum's house, that would be so perfect to knit into socks for Mum for Christmas.... well... there simply wasn't enough. 
So yes, unravel I did.. 
But I was determined that this yarn, spun at Mum's and in colours so suited to Mum - rich purples with earthy browns, be knit into a creation for Mum. So I hunted about and found a pattern that worked very nicely indeed :) The creation has been completed, the completed knit gifted and received with much delight (hurrah!!) so I shall share with you tomorrow pictures of the final product - I'm very happy with it! 

Monday, December 29, 2008


Feeling so tired! 

Up at 3:20 this morning (naturally! Didn't need to wait for alarm!) and on the road by 3:50am - yeehar! We made excellent time on the drive home but became a little crabby and needed a nap earlier today!! 

So it's officially Blu-Ray-On-Ze-Couch-Togezzer time, but I shall endeavour to post with more exciting news and picturesof all the fun of the last week in the next few days!

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Gratification - Somewhat Instantly

I saw this pattern on Ravelry (oh! what would a fibre-fiend do without Ravelry?!) when browsing through my 'Friend's Activity' (one of my favourite things to do) and decided it must be done. Gratification was wanting, not desperately but wanting none-the-less, and I thought Gratification of the "instant" kind is always a good thing. Plus I had a couple of little stashettes hanging about that needed sorting out...
Dec 08 Somewhat instant gratification (4)
I fished out the yarn in question - a single ball of super thick Freedom wool in delicious aqua colours, and the remains of the Amaroso Malabrigo worsted I used for the my Berry beret - a match made in a paintshop! The bright pinky red with the aquas - delish!
Dec 08 Somewhat instant gratification (2)
Not quite as instant as I had intended, since I began the scarf on my previous R&R then left it at home to complete this time. But all snuggliness and fantastica now that it is complete! Finished off on the drive Down South - we love our dawn raids, leaving at 4am when all is still silent and dark, and I am stil silent and sleepy so never have the first driving stint - perfect circumstances for whipping out the last foot or so of somewhat-instantly gratifying knitting!
Dec 08 Somewhat instant gratification (3)
NOTE: It is surprisingly difficult to take an attractive, professional photograph of newly completed knitwear being modelled by oneself in the semi-light of a rainy (yes - RAINY southern hemisphere) evening
Dec 08 Somewhat instant gratification
ALSO NOTE: I found the scarf also works quite well as a mock bouquet...

Friday, December 26, 2008

knitting list

A cute little list I saw about blog-land - what I have, haven't and am about to knit!

I'm always keen to learn new skills and try new things in life - this list has given me some good inspiration for new techniques I'd like to try in my knitting life!



Garter stitch

Stockinette stitch

Socks: top-down

Shawl Socks: toe-up

Knitting with camel yarn

Knitting with metal wire

Mittens: Cuff-up

Mittens: Tip-Down


Knitting with silk

Moebious band knitting

Participating in a KALSweater

Drop stitch patterns

Knitting with recycled/secondhand yarn

Slip stitch patterns

Knitting with banana fiber yarn

Domino knitting (modular)

Twisted Stitch patterns

Knitting with bamboo yarn

Two end knitting

Charity knitting

Knitting with soy yarn


Toy/doll clothing

Knitting with circular needles


Knitting with your own handspun yarn

Graffitti knitting (knitting items on, or to be left on the street)

Continental knitting

Designing knitted garments

Cable stitch patterns (incl. Aran)

Lace patterns

Publishing knitting book


Teaching a child to knit

American/English knitting (as opposed to continental)

Knitting to make money

Button holes

Knitting with alpaca

Fair Isle knitting

Household items (dishcloths, washcloths, tea cozies…)

Dyeing with plant colours

Knitting socks (or other small tubular items) on two circulars

Norwegian knitting

Knitting items for a wedding

Olympic Knitting

Knitting with DPNs

Knitting with someone else's handspun yarn

Holiday related knitting


Teaching a male how to knit

Knitting for a living

Knitting with cotton

Dyeing yarn

Knitting two socks (or other small tubular items) on two circulars simultaneously

Knitting two socks (or other small tubular items) on one long circular simultaneously

Knitting art

Knitting smocking


Knitting with wool


Textured knitting

Kitchener BO


Knitting with beads

Swatching Long Tail CO

Machine knitting

Entrelac Knitting and purling backwards

Knitting with self-patterning/self-striping/variegating yarn

Stuffed toys

Baby items

Knitting with cashmere



Knitting with synthetic yarn


Knitting with linen

Writing a Pattern


Knitting for preemies

Freeform knitting

Tubular CO

Short rows

Cuffs/fingerless mitts/arm warmers



Knitting on a loom

Knitting a pattern from an online knitting mag

Knitting a gift

Knitting for pets

Knitting with dog/cat hair

Thrummed knitting


Hair accessories

Knitting in public


Which do you want to accomplish?

Thursday, December 25, 2008

~ * * ~

Mr Roo joins us in wishing you all a merry little festivuss
Take care, relax, enjoy and may your days be sparkly and bright :)

Friday, December 19, 2008

Generosity isn't Itchy

My good knitterly friend Ms Inoriz must be going through some sort of generosity flush as part of her pregancy... She's a lass always generous, both materially and with her time and advice, but when I was home on R&R this past month the generosity seemed to have reached epic proportions!! I am a very lucky little knitter!! :)

Inoriz had told me there was a little green book awaiting me and I was not to purchase any green books in the meantime... oooh the intrigue!

You can see the book below - It Itches by Franklin Habit - such a delightful little collection of his drawings and essays - but the book is somewhat hidden beneath one of the other gifts from Ms Inoriz, a gift from her stash of fantastically cool and smooth Bamboo!


I've been hanging out to knit with bamboo for some time so I'm thrilled to have the chance now! This lovely bamboo is in a range of green through to black - from hot lime fluro green all the way through charcoal browns to almost black - delish! I've been thinking about what to knit up and I've decided I might try a little One Skein Wonder mini shrug/bolero.. I bought Stephanie Japel's pattern once but now can't find it anywhere amongst my saved files and documents - it may have been lost in the great crash of 2007!! Nevermind - I think I'll follow the Two Tone shrug pattern to get the general idea of the increases and so on and just wing it from there!

Ms Inoriz didn't stop with two balls of bamboo and a book - don't let my pattern digression lead you astray n that account! Oh no! I also have become the delighted owner of two balls of Jojoland (very fitting!) Melody in such beautiful colours.

Melody yarn

I'm going to be really selfish and knit this yarn up for myself too! I think some nutkin socks will be just the ticket - to show the colour meld off as it changes from colour to colour, but not to drown out the fabulous nutkin pattern!

Thank you Ms Inoriz - I feel very spoilt indeed :)

Batty for Cuteness

I'm a sucker for cute. Now nature is an incredible thing and often I'm floored by the beauty inherent in so many natural creations. But beauty can often take a more minimised and sometimes dismissed form... of cuteness. Now cuteness is by no means lesser to big brother Beauty, the adorable has a certain claim to our heart strings that beauty can sometimes not equal.

Take for today's example, this little dude:

Wee orphaned bats - (photos care of - all rugged up.
Note the gorgeous fuzz, and melting gooey brown eyes, the little shnoz and leathery elbows!


I particularly like the surprising appearance of the large claw from bat 2nd on the right! hehee!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Fair Isle Socks

Fair isle socks don't really pose much of a threat do they, really, generally?

Apart from perhaps some sore fingers from a too-dense-gauge, or maybe a terrible tangling of yarn - but you never really fear fair isle socks, do you? Apart from a new knitter feeling daunted by the technique I suppose...

Welll THIS is a 'Fair Isle Socks' to be feared!
fairisle soldier

SO hilarious! I ran to get my camera as soon as I saw it come up on the screen. Skoot was playing a military playstation 3 game online - this person had made their character up under the name fairisle_socks!!

It was particularly amusing since the game is so tough and most players set their character up to be as hard-arse as possible, and yet this fellow went with Fair isle Socks! They MUST be a knitter! Or at least live with one...

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Crafting in the Night!

I am SO excited!

... yes, you're stunned, I know - such a rare emotion for me, right?

I have put aside all of this evening for crafting - specifically, Festivuss Crafting! I picked up a pot of instant noodles this morning when we were packing our crib (read "smoko", read "lunch") so I can have that for dinner in our little donga rooms rather than having to walk down to the dry mess for a meal. I haven't foolishly committed to any social engagements, have been very careful not to do that - "oooh pub tonight?!" - "quick drink after work?" - "walking home?" - my answer to all of these shall be a polite decline.

I am so looking forward to stitching up little mini-knits, gluing, ribboning, adding bells to things, cutting out card and pictures, sprinkling sparkles... I can hardly wait!!

Now I much prefer posting with pictures, and since I have some extras not yet shared of our trip down south I thought I'd share some - two of my faves ;) We were driving along this country road and as we zoomed by I squealed "GIANT YAAAAARN!!" so on the way back we pulled over, and got a shot of me holding the giant yarn ball...


It actually took several shots because as you might have guessed the "yarn" was in fact much more giant than in that top photo... was huuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuge!!

heheee ;D

This particular homestead had two ginormous balls of entwined barbed-wire atop a pole - one on each side of their gate - such fun.. such, such fun *beaming grin*

Monday, December 15, 2008

Shaking off the moss

They say a rolling stone gathers no moss, but unfortunately the cobble boulder has been in a bit of a static state lately what with all the Christmas stocking kntiting that went on, plus with the jumper being so ginormous now it's relegated to at-home knitting only, and since most of mine happens during the trips to and fro work and in lunch breaks, it doesn't result in much air-time!

Dec 08 Cobble boulder

But the last few days cobble boulder has been dusted off, rolling ever faster and is now oh-so-close to being finished! I'm partway through a purl round, after which I get to indulge in another satisfying decrease round, making the yoke smaller and smaller so I can whip out the rounds faster and faster!!

I can barely restrain myself from staying up uber late, or dragging it along to work with me to finish this super soft knit for my shweetie!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Festivuss Craftivuss!

Festivuss crafting has begun!

Well, to be honest it's been going on in the background for a little while now, preparing bits and pieces for card making, knitting away on my brother's scarf, toiling with some handspun that won't behave in the pattern I want it to.. and these little items!

Dec 08 Chrissie knits

Some of you may recognise them - shh! - and I shall show FO photos as soon as they have been gifted, which won't be long now. I so thoroughly enjoy festivuss celebratory crafts almost above all else, and have been having such a magic time this year as I've had more free time to give to such rewarding endeavours :)

Must settle down at home this afternoon though to crank out the cards, otherwise they won't get to their destinations in time!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Knew Knitty is fishy

As most of you 'net savvy fibre-fiends out there will know, the newest edition of Knitty is out and has a BARREL load of patterns! Within the buffet of patterns a lot of smaller projects are nestled which would make excellent last-dash Festivuss giftings too.

I have to say my personal favourite is fishy, the fish hat.

fishy 1

Ohhh how I LUFF the droop of the tail, the possibilities for striping, the goggley eyes and perky fins! I plan to make one of these for Skoot, myself and the Monkey Pup so we can all cruise around together in a little school of fish hats! hehee

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Dare devil

Now I know the rules are being revised at the moment, but to this point I haven't heard of the restrictions on taking such dangerous items as knitting needles and *gasp* crochet hooks (yes, even the non-pointy cousin of the knitting needles has been singled out in flight safety literature I've seen) being lessened to allow we crafty folks to maximise the efficiency of flight time and STITCH ON BOARD.


flight sky
High above northern Western Australia - the clouds look suspended.

In any case, the company I work for uses a charter flight to ferry workers to and fro, so the rules and regulations are still in place but sometimes can be a little easier to circumvent. Friendly flight attendants you see every flight tend to be a little more lenient when they see you carefully extricate your current socks from the carry on bag (after take off of course so they can't snatch them off and chuck them out the door on to the tarmac just before take off) and start fertively knitting away.

So I've been a happy camper lately, getting a little knitting done on board which makes the time fly past like the knitting off my needles - yay! :D

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Sock Nutt!

My sock knitting fever has continued and I have cranked out a little pair of jester-like sockettes for a good friends little boy, who live far away so need lots of handknit goods - hurrah!!
Bosko's Socks Dec 08
I'm very happy with how they turned out since I didn't do any planning before hand, simply cast on with the magic cast on at the toe with 2.75mm harmony DPNs and go cracking!!
Bosko's Socks Dec 08 (2)
A couple of little ribbing bands to add interest
Bosko's Socks Dec 08 (5)
And a row of little bobbley picot trim at the top!
Bosko's Socks Dec 08 (3)
Knit with Cascade Fixation they have a great amount of stretch and will be perfectly cool for the Australian climate.
Bosko's Socks Dec 08 (4)
They'll be much too big for little Bosko at the moment, but everything else I've knit him has turned out too small! So this time I decided I will make them large enough to DEFINITELY fit him at some point!

Sunday, December 07, 2008

High Heat

Oh my goodness... I knew the Pilbara was a suffocatingly hot region, but yesterday we experienced a little of just how hot it can get!!

41 degress celsius (perhaps even higher) during the day yesterday - which for those Yanks out there, is 105 Fahrenheit! YIKES!

Luckily, my work keeps me mostly in an office so I don't have to endure the heat too much - but the Scrumptious Bum? He's out in the heat, and sun for almost the entire 11 hour day - phew :( Pretty exhausting stuff

Today's forecast to reach a similar heat, cooling to around the 25 degree celcius mark over night.
Deep thick thunderstormy clouds often cover the sky and the air can feel quite electric with all the negative ions buzzing about.

Fortunately, our dongas are equipped with great air-cons which we run on low when we're there to keep things tolerable - also means my knitting isn't compromised ;)

Saturday, December 06, 2008


CPH buttoned full
May I present... my closable hoodii!! :D
CPH buttoned (7)o
During this R&R I built up enough momentum (largely due to encouragement form my shweetie!) to put down my current projects and attach the closures to my Central Park hoodii!
Nov 08 022
I am SO excited to have the I-cord and paddington buttons affixed - it has made the hoodii infinitely more wearable - if only the weather was still cool enough to need it! Nevermind, something to look forward to, a nice frosty winter next year for me to don my hoodii every day!
CPH buttoned (9)
I've come to think of this hoodii more as my Kings Park hoodii, than Central Park hoodii, seeing as the Westeran Australia equivalent of new York's Central Park is Kings Park, which I've covered in a previous post.
CPH buttoned (3)
Kings Park is in fact the world's largest inner city park and is a lovely spot to visit if you ever visit W.A. We've been intending to spend a day there wandering about taking photos since we've got a new camera to play with and a fun super macro setting to boot!
CPH buttoned (1)
I must say I feel a little shy putting some of these shots up as some of them look a little 'posed' even though they were snapped by my shweetie while we were chatting and such taking the photos very naturally byt they do show all my favourite elements of the hoodii really well so I couldn't leave them out, no matter how I might blush!

Friday, December 05, 2008

Holidays with Compassion

Once again Festivuss fever has hit and amongst all the sparkles, treats and tunes, festive delights and wrapping adventures I'm continuing my desire to mainly give handmade gifts and maintain a very conscious and ethical involvement in the process.

This is why I was so struck by a new venture on Etsy. This year, as per last, they are again encouraging people to "make the pledge" to gift hand made items over the holidays.

But this year there's something a little new and a little more ethical even... Cruelty Free Etsy & Vegan Etsy teams have combined to encourage folks to support Holidays with Compassion.

You can find out more about this fabulous venture (including all the sale items involved too!) here

Monday, December 01, 2008

Commissioned Colour-work

Some months ago - perhaps nearer to a year in fact - a work friend of mine from my previous job asked if I would help her on a knitting mission. Her great-grandmother and grandmother had knitted lovely christmas stockings for all members of her family, and they have always enjoyed the tradition of putting up the stockings at Christmas time and remembering the two granmotherly knitters who have now passed away. With two new people marrying into the family Mary Jo was keen for the two lads to also have a stocking each to join in the tradition.
Fair Isle Chrissie stocking - John (4)
Mary Jo is herself a knitter, but rather a novice, so when she asked me if I could be commissioned to knit the two stockings for her in the style of the originals I refused but told her I would help her to achieve the goal herself. MJ had just taken on a new and more stressful role in the company however, and when we discussed it, she was certain she would not be able to accomplish the task before christmas - so I agreed to knit them up for her.
Stef's Stocking
This was my first stranded colour work project, and my first commissioned work - I loved the colourwork and will definitely be repeating that experience, the commissioned work however... not so much. Happily they're both completed now and have been hand delivered to MJ who was very appreciative.
Inside stocking
MJ had loaned me one of the original stockings so I could style the new ones around a similar design. I simply followed my standard sock recipe but with DK (8ply) weight wool, used graph paper to sketch out the stranded design I wanted and voila! It was super fun :)
Fair Isle Chrissie stocking - John (3)
The original stockings had sequins and beads sewn on afterwards, and a little tassle at the top with a bell - I left these adornments off since that would give MJ a way to contribute to the project and tie her creative love and touch into the items.

So now they are done and delivered I feel very satisfied to have had a fair crack at colourwork, finished the items on time and had them well received... and I'm left with a bit of a festive feeling I must admit! :)