Thursday, April 30, 2009

Mysterious Knit Revealed!

Jolene and little Joshua have now received their mysterious knit in the mail, so it no longer needs to remain mysterious!

This little beanie was knit following the Perfect Fit baby hat but I made several changes. I cast on with needles much larger than I actually needed and reduced down, knit a few rows, then reduced needle size AGAIN so the edge is slightly flared.
bubby beanie (1)
With eyelets on the brain I added an eyelet round, knit a bit more stockinette then added another eyelet round straight before the decreases. Sitting on its own it looks a little bit like a circus tent, the eyelet ridge gives an angle to the top section. But on a littler person wee noggin I imagine it will round out :)
bubby beanie (3)
The rim is rolled so that the beanie will fit Josh's little head now but also be able to unroll and fit him for a longer time I hope. I knit the little head warmer in malabrigo cotton so it won't be too warm for our climate - it was such a pleasure to work with - yum yum!
bubby beanie
I hope he likes his little cotton beanie - Jojo you must send photos!!

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Babies galore!

It seems that babies are catching at present - I have a veritable plethora of friends who have had bubs or are having bubs! To deal with this alarming yet delightful situation I've been keeping an eye on bubby projects to knit up - little things like beanies, socks, booties and little mini mitts are always great, but the odd larger item like a hooded blanket or little cardi would be nice too.

I've cast on a wee pair of booties following the Blue Steps pattern, but mine are more like Biege Steps.
cotton booties
Lovely natural cotton, so soft, so lovely, by Cleckheaton - I'm really enjoying knitting these up so far and hope they'll warm some little mini-tootsies soon!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Cast off! But with reservations...

After much binding-off frustration I have finally cast off on the simple shawletter!

The frustration was due to my trying to eke every little gram of yarn out of the two skeins I had to knit with. So by the time I got to binding off, I kept running out of yarn! Each time I frogged back one row and ended up binding off rather more tightly than I would have liked to.

shawlette cast off
[See the little tail end of the yarn there? Bloody thing!]

I think I'm going to have to block the shawlette rather uh.. 'assertively' to manage the length needed to wear it how I like; ie wrapped around the neck with the long point in front and then tails tied in front. We'll see how that goes - I don't know how much it will grow!

Monday, April 27, 2009

Count your change!

Who would have thought that this;
Coinage (1)

Would become something like $203.60!!

Saturday, April 25, 2009


ANZAC Day today, which is always a poignant day for me. We attended the dawn service up here which was very well attended for such an isolated area - folks decked out in their finery and medals, the cenotaph, laying of the wreaths and of course the 'singing' of the national anthem - general more like a muted sort of muttering that swells into greater strength at the chorus and ending

I don't know exactly why, but I feel the significance of this day much more than our other National holidays and events. Perhaps because I had family involved in various wars, or simply due to a rich and empathic imagination which makes it easy for me to really appreciate the experiences and life-changing events to all involved in the events commemorated; the soldiers themselves and other servicemen of the time, the women on the battlefields as nurses in sometimes appalling makeshift hospitals, the families left at home, the deserters, the injured or disabled people unable to help the cause, those left behind after the skies cleared.
So many people so effected in such a vast array of impacts.
And war is such a controversial topic - who? Why? and what for? all these philosophical and burning questions - applied more to current wars than those of the past - ethical dilemmas, mixed emotions or very clear cut views - such a melting pot.

For me, on this day, I think back to those people fighting then, and focus on the individual personal experiences they must have had - as being one person thrown into such trmoil and events they could not have prepared for or exeriences before. And the Australian qualities of mateship, a "fair-go" mutual respect and "getting on and getting it done" that the diggers instilled in us as a nation, that I hope we will hold to. And those qualities shared by all of humanity; to band together and help each other in times of need.
Poignant indeed

In knitting news, I haven't really been feeling the love lately with the simple shawlette I'm knitting away on. I still love the yarn and pattern but feel a little frustrated. I'm getting so close to the end, and have been rocking out with a series of purl ridges and eyelet rows inspired by Mary Heather's fabulous Simple Things.
I think what it is, is that I didn't start the texture early enough, so now I'm trying to fit in the expanding sequence I have in my head of ridge-gap-ridge-smaller gap-big eyelet rows-gap-small eyelet rows etc.. and am running short on yarn!
Simple shawlette detail (2)
Ah well.. I'm very close to the end so I'll push on, finish the row I'm on and bind off. When I block it out it may be just exactly what I had in mind after all, and if not I can frog it out and redo that section.
Simple shawlette detail (1)

The colours seem very fitting for today too, very earthy and Australian.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Quick mysterious knit!

I had the day off work yesterday, sitting in my donga trying to kick this cold to the kerb - it seems to be lingering around the office and try as I might, I couldn't dodge it!

I did manage to whip up a little something from the remaining Malabrigo 100% organic cotton left over from the Presto Chango though...


But I can't show any more!
I'm posting it off today and until it's been received I can't give any spoilers here!!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

= 'knit'

As I mentioned previously I'm rather obsessed with shawls lately, and I've also been admiring the beautiful wares from A Verb For Keeping Warm.

To this end I decided a "two birds with one purchase" action was required!

I had been yearning for orange, a big splashy fabulous orange and when I saw the Thai Iced Tea in all its shimmery glory I fixated on it as just the perfect orange! I was even more so smitten with the Jade colourway of Verb's alpaca silk. I bookmarked the page and often went back to gaze and sigh while admiring the pictures!

So after this lengthy yarn "stalking" (as Nicole from Stash'and'Burn would say) I decided to take the plunge. And before too long this lovely parcel was awaiting me at the post office!


And inside...?


Ohhh how delightful!!

AVFKW Jade (2)

These two plump and luscious skeins of Alpaca Silk are destined to become a delicious giant shawl somewhere in their future.

AVFKW Jade (6)

But for now I'm happy to enjoy them in their yarn-y form; the winds and bends of glossy yet soft strands - almost edible!!


The 100% Baby Alpaca is no less divine...

AVFKW Thai Iced Tea

The gentle halo and that fabulous orange - ooooh! What's not to love, cherish, squeeze and adore?! (any non fibre-ista would assume I'm talking about babies or puppies...)

AVFKW Thai Iced Tea (1)

Who isn't charmed by.. well.. charms?! A sweet little stitch marker nestled in amongst the skeins too :)


Kristine is SO magically friendly and wonderful, it's an extra added bonus and makes me want to run on back to snaffle up more of her gorgeous yarns and fibre. I'm very much looking forward to experiencing this yarn in the relevant verb, which in this instance will be 'knit. But in he future I hope to enjoy such verbs as 'card' and 'spin' with wares from Kristine's fabulous store, and of course my favourite verb for keeping warm - 'snuggle' with the end products :)


Monday, April 20, 2009

Finally Final Forest Photos!

We enjoyed a wonderous day off on Saturday (we have one day off per fortnight) so I took the opportunity to take some shots of the Forest Canopy Shawl-ette before sending it off.

fcA (4)

The yarn is so utterly delicious, I'd love to knit with it again and luckily I have half the cone left so I shall!

fcA (2)

The leaves in the lace pattern of this shawl always get me - I love the shape and curve, so many lovely leaves - a canopy indeed!


Gratuitous close ups of fabulous yarn and heart-swelling lace are always so addictive - I couldn't pick between them!


The only way to wear it really is around the neck since it's quite little. Too small to wear draped over the shoulders.

Forest Canopy - size (3)

This shawl ended up just the right size to wear like a neckerchief; once around with the large triangular point at the front, and tied under the neck. The little tails only just made it!

I feel very affectionately fond of this little shawl and know it will go to its recipient filled with good wishes and warmth of heart :)

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Hey Presto!

Inspired by blocking out the front panel and seeing it in all its finished glory (isn't blocking some kind magic?!) I decided it was high time to seam up the rest of the Presto Chango cardigan.

It turns out that I really don't mind seaming and sewing knit garments up at all.
The only reason the task gets so put off is that I feel I need sufficient light, a goodly chunk of time (not just on the bus or waiting in line time) and probably the largest factor - nothing too interesting to divert my eyes!

Most of my knitting and crafting happens either in social settings of some kind, or in front of the tv which is showing either the current PS3 game in full swing, or any variety of movies or shows. Seaming, I've discovered, is much like challenging lace; I can't complete it to any satisfaction when my eyes need to be trained on either the tv or the people I'm interacting with - I need to be able to focus!
The occasional glance upwards is fine, as is listening and talking of course - but this is sufficient dterrant that I always seem to take ages to sew things up!

I'm so glad I made the time yesterday to complete the cardi though, it is always so satisfying to have something finished :)


Not that the cardi is completely finished though, I must still add buttons to fit with the somewhat drunken buttonholes.
I'm wondering though.. what's the go with buttons on baby garments?
My instinctive reaction is to keep babies as far from buttons as possible, and yet I see them on knit garments quite often.


I'll check with the Mama of this particular little one before I go sewing buttons on just in case :)

Presto Panel

Remember that cotton baby cardi I was knitting up?

Well I've put a bit more time in to it now that my knitting queue has freed up a little - pretty much top of my list seeing as the baby I'm knitting it for isn't going to stop growing to wait til I'm finished!

I've completed the front panel with the fun lace fronds that remind me of bean pods and today (a fabulous well needed day off from work!) had time to block it! Hurrah!


You might be able to tell I need some practice on buttonholes.. all in good time!

Monday, April 13, 2009

Simple Beginnings

Over the Last couple of months I've become increasingly enamoured with the idea of shawls... Mmmmmm just the word makes me want to nuzzle into the warmth and softness of an all encompassing comfort and deliciousness of a nice snuggly shawl - like a cat shnuggling into a fabulously cosy napping spot!

I've knit a few lace shawls so far - one for each of my Grandmothers, a small shawlette type shawl for charity and most recently the long rectangular lace wedding stole.

I have in mind knitting a ginormous triangular lace shawl - mainly inspired by this amazing creation by ClaraSofia
Doesn't that look INCREDIBLE?!
Oh to have such a luxurious creation to wrap around oneself!!

I'm also loving the smaller shawls, or shawlettes, in the style of Ishbel and such - lace triangles that can be worm as little scarves or neckercheifs to add colour, comfort and neck-toastiness!

I had long been contemplating knitting something in the style of a mainly stockinette triangle with a bit of fanciness on the edge, but not too elaborate, something akin to a smaller verson of the Textured Shawl recipe...

With this mulling about in my mind I stumbled across Mary Heather's fantastic Simple Things shawl - and I have fallen in LOVE!

This absolutely fits the bill and my imaginaton grabbed a hold of the image to fill in the wavey clouds of mental imagery I had been toying with and give a solid structure to the ideas of what I would like to knit! MH (rainydaygoods on ravelry) has yet to publish the pattern so I embarked on the project myself, improvising to hopefully achieve a similar outcome.

simple shawlette close

I'm using two skeins of Koigu KPPPM which I have hoarded, Smaug-like in my obsessive protection, for what seems like an age. I finally decided it's high time to knit the yarn up, and as I'm so in love with Koigu (I want moooore! MORE!!) yet it seems to be so hard to come by here in Oz, I wanted to create something that I could see and touch and enjoy, and I worried that socks would be too easily forgotten all the way down 5-foot-something-inches away from my sight!

I'm thrilled to have paired the yarn with this project as it's coming out wonderfully.
Reminds me of something, but I can't yet place what exactly... Something organic and natural.. like a marsh? Or lovely smooth gecko skin? I'm not sure yet but it's striking a chord with me whatever it is! I began knitting on our drive from the city up up up in to the Pilbara, so it will always have wild desert memories knit in to it too I expect

simple shawlette

This shot gives an idea of scale, though the colours aren't accurate as the first - Fluro office lighting is not a friend to colour! I plan to knit through this first ball, and then once I'm about half way through the next skein I'll begin the eyelet ridges - I think that should work out fairly well :) I'm so EXCITED to be knitting for ME! ;D

p.s. Mary Heather is writing up the pattern and test knitting at this instant! So be sure to keep an eye out for its debut!

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Paired Leaves Wedding Stole!

A little while before Bink's wedding date I offered to knit her a lace wedding shawl to commemorate the event - she agreed! We spent some time discussing style, colour and fibre as well as drape and weight of the finished item.
Having decided on all of the above I wasted no time in ordering the yarn and getting stuck in, knitting away in a frenzy at every opportunity!

I remained mainly monogamous to the project, just as well as I finished and blocked it the day before the wedding!
Wedding stole - blocking (8)
I'm very happy with how it turned out and feel a warm glow of satisfaction and delight that a significant hand knit now resides with one of my dearest friends and will hopefully remind her of the special day whenever she wears it :)

Pattern: Liesel by Mary Joy Gumayagay. 5 stitch garter on each edge, 4 pattern repeats wide, 30 pattern repeats long.
Needles: 6mm - Metal Options
Pre-block measurements: I don't know! Forgot to measure or take shots!
Post-block measurements: 45cm tall, 160+cm long

Bink's Wedding Shawl

I must take some better final shots of the stole it was all a bit rushed on the day as you can imagine! - but I quite like this one of Binkette in her wedding finery as we packed up at the end of the evening, lighting and blurriness adding to the feel of the image :)

Technophile Toy!

I think we must have been in need of a technophile fix, because this R&R we invested in a new toy, a telecommunications toy!

This flash little piece of gear, the HTC HD, is now safely nestled away in its little cover in my bag - I'm terrified of damaging it!

new toy

We have a PDA that we use as a GPS gadget while we travel about, but it has limited storage space and is getting a little out-dated, so it was time to look at other options.

This one has the added bonus of a delicious touch screen and all sorts of bells and whistles - we're still figuring out how to use it in fact! Internet access capabilities and al lthat jazz, so I will never have to be without a Ravelry update or hit of knitterly nettism!

No excuses for not having my finger on the pulse of the knitting webiverse now!

Friday, April 10, 2009

A long radio silence again - I know, I'm a very bad little blogger!!

This R&R has been absolutely crazy-person busy though, so that is my one excuse!
A combination of super fun ultra-terrific moments and an exhausting bombardment of have-to's we barely had a moment spare!!

One of the magic moments was sharing times with one of my closest friends on her wedding day. The pre-wedding preparations; hair, make-up, final details, photos etc.. The stunning ceremony itself high on a hill over looking native reserve of gorgeous Australian bush and out to the ocean. And finally the wonderful reception!

Bon's wedding (15)
(bouquets of stunning natives)

The wedding had a general Jane Austen feel to it; the dresses styled after Regency period attire, the gents in properly fashioned british made Mr Darcy suits *swooon* and even a quill and ink to sign the official documents!

One of my favourite parts was the inclusion of lawn games at the reception - quoits, giant jenga, hula hoops and bocce to name just a few! I had such a ball and Bink, I'm so delighted and honoured to have shared the day with you - thank you :)

The remainder of our R&R was spent in a somewhat chaotic foray of packing, sorting and culling all our belongings in preparation for garage sale and moving house next break.
Oh. My. Goodness. I always underestimate just how many THINGS we have.
I attempted to organise my stash and take photos of all my fibre and yarn but couldn't complete the task so have to tackle taht again next time. I have about as much stash as I thought I would - but it'll be good ot take some official stash shots and document each skein on my Ravelry page.

Then on Wednesday we were off and out the door by 3:30am on a monster drive back up north!
We decided to drive rather than fly for various reasons, and it was quite a fun adventure I have to admit!

simple shawl

The 13 hours in the car gave me ample time to get stuck in to a new project - details pending, for now I leave you with a shot of the beautiful colours that greeted us as we drove north north north on Wednesday - a little blurry through the smudged windscreen, but stunning none-the-less :)

pilbara sunrise