Saturday, October 3, 2015


Look at this cute face. You wouldn't think he could be ever naughty, right?

hehe. I told him, when I left for the Bendigo Wool Festival, that I'd get him some green yarn and make him a hat and some gloves. Haven't gotten to the gloves yet, but the hat is done, and fits him perfectly :)

He immediately reminded me about the gloves. Haha. At least he loves knitted things for now.

Finished the Denatures by knitting them all the time, even in my work break at around 3am. I did the same Fleegle Heel as was in the Rose Tyler pattern (so as to avoid having to cable on the wrong side of the heel flap) and then reinforced the heel with a strand of black. Looks a bit dodgy, and forgot to do the ball of the toe until it was too late, but it will be extra tough, anyway. The yarn is from Bendi a while back, from Stranded in Oz and called "Friar Tuck Green". Sparkles! I liked the way the lurex (or whatever it is) is incorporated in this yarn, not in bits that stick out (like many sparkly yarns) but chain plied through it somehow.

There is 7g of green yarn left. I was a bit worried. That's one of the things I hate about top-down socks; nothing you can do if you run out of yarn. If you start at the toe and you run out half-way up the leg, you can either add a different yarn that will rarely be seen under your jeans, or just stop there and have shorter socks.

So the next socks are being knit toe-up (in spite of the pattern). It's basically just a cable and rib pattern that can be plugged into any basic sock pattern anyway. I knit a bit today, while the kids were at a playground. Very bright blue, like sky blue with hints of purple. I wouldn't have thought it my color, particularly, but I'm loving it. Nice to do something a bit different.

The colorwork is on the bottom. I'm doing 2x2 squares this time, which is actually easier, and Magic Loop, which actually doesn't work. I have to just slip all the sole stitches to the other needle every second row. But never mind; I'm only doing 20 rows or so of the reinforcement.

More cranking experiments. I used two balls of DK weight acrylic that the boys had bought me one Christmas. First I cranked one holding one strand, then I joined the next ball with both ends and cranked it with 2 strands held together. So there's about 175cm of single-yarn "scarf" and 60cm of doubled-yarn "hat". I finished off the ends, and gave it to Zac, but Jasmine did a little model for me first.


I only spun one thing this last month, but it was a 200g skein of 6ply and equal to about 1200y (1100m) of singles.

It's just a little sparkly. One of the strands is merino/alpaca/silk and the other is merino/stellina, but they're the same colorway (Goldfields by Kathy's Fibres). One was spun from one end to the other (with long color changes) and the other was split in length-ways bits first (short color changes). So it should be interesting to see how it knits up. I think I'll try it on Cranky; that's why I made it so thick, after all. :)

Last: new colors from Southern Cross Fibres, in the mail on their way to my house right now!


Land Under Wave
 Following a Terry Pratchett's Discworld theme. There were a lot of coordinates I loved, especially the red one called "Cheep", but I didn't get any this month. I don't want to drown in fibre, after all :)

If you've ever read "Wee Free Men" you might get where "Cheep" comes from. I won't spoil it for you, except to say that when I was reading it to my kids, all three of them nearly rolled off the couch laughing.

And now, back to my Mission (for the Order of the Phoenix) which is to spin 750y of a 3ply. I'm spinning one ply each of the blue-green trio from the August SCF club. The Tidepool singles are done; two to go.


Tuesday, September 22, 2015


Wo, these ones are bright!!

Love them. Love how the legs are long and the heel flap didn't need any backwards knitting (because it's a Fleegle heel) and how I'm going to use that strategy in the next pair so I don't have to cable on the wrong side, and the moss stitch columns, and the cables!

They took forever! But they did use 95g (of the 100g I had), and were not exactly TV knitting.

Now I'm up to green!!

Green sparkly stuff from Stranded in Oz, with a DNA-shaped cable that denatures when it meets the heel. They're called "Denature", and I'm finding them slow-going, too! Mostly because every chart row needs concentration. Luckily, 2/3 of it is stocking stitch, but I'm not sure I'm going to finish them in my week off. I'll do my best.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

So slow, so fast

I know I haven’t written on this blog for a while, but it’s not because I’m a slacker so much as I’m just So Slow. I wanted to have a finished thing or two, and socks take me forever.
Last month I thought I’d get ahead on my sock NEWT. Ha. I didn’t even finish the second pair until a few days into September. I thought I might be a bit ahead anyway, since I’d made a start on Pair 3. Nope. I still haven’t finished them. I’m getting behind.
Anyway, I don’t actually have a real life deadline (it’s just a game) and I’m getting some nice socks out of it. Here are Red and Orange.
The red ones are Skyp socks, and they’re pretty simple, a bit of a twist on the usual rib. The orange ones are Treppenviertel (which means something about stairs) and they’re actually kind of fun to make and fit well. The reinforcing on the bottom is done with an extra strand of yarn that stays on the sole.
Here’s what I did for the orange socks. Basically, you have one needle for the top of the sock and one needle for the bottom (if you knit with two circulars like I usually do). On row 1 (at the start of the sole stitches) you knit 1 orange 1 white all the way across (regular colorwork). Then you drop the white and knit the other needle.
Then you find yourself at the beginning of the sole again, but the white yarn is on the wrong side. You knit 1, slip 1, all the way to the other side, turn so you’re knitting on the wrong side of the sole stitches, drop the orange and pick up the white, and purl the stitches you slipped on the last row and slip the stitches you knit on the last row. Then you drop the white, and without turning, pick up the orange and go on with the instep. When you get to the sole stitches again, there you are with both colors on the right side again.
As for the yellow socks, they are both rib and cables, and are taking me a long time! I was supposed to be finished them by now, and I have about 50 rounds to go, knitting two at a time. But I think they’re the trickiest, so perhaps the other socks will go more quickly.
Also bought an Addi King Express knitting machine! It’s only a simple plastic thing that knits stocking stitch in the round, and it has to be 46 stitches of fairly fat wool, but I bought it for experimentation. So far I’ve made a scarf for Jasmine (using a whole 200g ball of Stellar) and two double-layer hats for the charity box.
Addi King Express experiments
Addi King Express experiments
I added the ribbing and fringe to the ends of the tube, and gave it a good stretch.
AKE double hats
AKE double hats
For these hats, I made a long tube, using 2 skeins of Madelinetosh Chunky, and took it off the Addi King Express (AKA AKE or Cranky). I did some maths, put my needles in 7 rows down from the ends, and unwound a bit. Then I used the unwound bits to knit 4 rounded ends (hat tops). Because it’s a tube, I can push one inside the other, and it becomes a double thickness reversible hat. It’s still quite long, too; the boys have to fold up the brim as well. Each hat took me about 2 hours, an hour of cranking and an hour of finishing, though I dare say I could do it more quickly if I wasn’t watching TV. :)
And now, back to my yellow socks! As soon as they’re done I can finish off some spinning I started and cast on my green sparkly socks!

Monday, August 17, 2015


Today is the day where Southern Cross Fibres puts 'spoilers' up. I was going to Not Look this month, and get a surprise, but I found I couldn't resist. I clicked "refresh" every few minutes on the website (because David said "after breakfast on Monday") and was nearly late taking the kids to school :)

Anyway, if you're in the SCF club and you don't want to see, look away.

I did some dyeing of my own yesterday, and put some pink, blue and purple into Jasmine's hair. It was lots of fun. Her hair is getting longer, but she's also brushing herself with more care, so it's not as tangley as it used to be. The pink overwhelmed the blue a bit (and the blue stripe is thinner). The purple is in the ends of her hair, but you can't really tell the difference between purple and pink. Should have added more blue. Anyway,
she ran off to school, all smiles, to show off her hair, so she's happy.



This month the Club fibre is organic merino, and this is the one I loved right off

Laurel Crown
For that one I bought the light blue coordinate and the green coordinate, as shown in the SCF picture

with Fairway and Tidepool

But now that I look at it, I can't wait to spin the other colorway, too. It's very cheerful!


Ink Blue
And I got the coordinating darker blue for that one. There was a purple, but I've got a bit of dark purple in my stash still.

I'm not doing anything except socks at the moment (because that's all I'm getting Points for). I got my personal best score last term... and Slytherin came last in both Quidditch and the House Cup. This next term I'm going to get a lower score, maybe my lowest ever. But I have lots of sock yarn to dye, and some spinning to do, if the socks get done.

So far I've done one red sock and one orange sock, and I'm working on Red2. I'll show you the pairs as they're done. The yarn is nice, and the reinforced bits on the sole look as if they'll work well. If I finish this NEWT, that will be 450 points for Slytherin, anyway. We'll see how we go next term. Due for a win, I'd say!

Sunday, August 2, 2015

NEWT 7 and NEWT 8

Here's the last project for NEWT 7, a triangle shawl called "The Age of Brass and Steel", knit with my handspun, the N4ply mixes of Twelve and Peacoat.

Love it. It's a Polwarth/tencel mix, so it's very soft (wearing it right now) and it was quick, and I love the colors. Lovely to knit, too, but I'm glad to get it finished. You know, so I could start another NEWT :)

One other handspun finished this month:

Kathy's Fibres Optim in "Sunset"

NEWT 8! I'm going to make 8 pairs of socks for my 8th NEWT. I don't think I'll have time to make much else this next term, but it will be great to have more new socks in the sock drawer. I'm making one each in red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet, and I'm going to use the leftovers to make a multicolored rainbow pair. One sock a week, roughly! I started at the red end of the spectrum, making Skyp socks.

I'm on my way :)

Thursday, July 30, 2015

In the Club

Some people who dye wool fibre have a Fibre Club. If you join it, you pay each month (or whatever time frame) and you get a surprise in the post. With Kathy's Fibre, she lets us know that "the next Club is on the website" and there are a certain amount available until it's sold out.

I've had my eye on the Southern Cross Fibres Club for ages. I added my name to the waiting list a few years ago, and last year in June, when I asked, David Shulz said I was 149th on the slow-moving list.

This month, I finally got in! I had ordered some "coordinates", which anyone who is quick enough can do, and he wrote back saying "Didn't you get my message? You're in the Club now!" (My silly old hotmail address was hacked a while ago, and I haven't been able to use it since).

So this month I got some new fibre called "Eider". Good to try new things. I had asked for two green coordinates, and now that I'm in the Club I'm getting one of each of the two colorways he makes every month. So these four:


And Olive (dark) and Cedar (light) to go with the Lily
It's not a soft wool, like Merino, more like Shetland or Finn. In other words, probably good for tough things like socks or jumpers. I've spun up the Water already, as part of the Tour de Fleece.

Eider. "Water".
Shetland. "Gorse"
South African Superfine. "Vetinari"
Finn. "Quiet Shade"
Merino. A 2ply mix of "Death" and "Jewel"
Merino/stellina. "Autumn Shimmer"
That's all the spinning from the Tour de Fleece this year, plus a little bit of the leftover "Death", which got added to some green Shetland a few days later. Total length of singles spun (between July 4-26) was 4993y/4565m. I put them all into classes and things, in the Harry Potter game, plus this one

Shetland in "Foliage" and merino in "Death". Half the skein is a 3ply of both (2 green, one purple) and half the skein is N-plied green).
I'm spinning one last fibre now (the brightly colored one I got from Bendigo) and then... NEWT 8 begins!

Monday, July 27, 2015

Bendigo 2015

Firstly, I finished my Sprig top (extra length and short sleeves) just in time to wear to Bendigo.

 It's asymmetric, which requires a bit of concentration. You start at the top of the left shoulder, going back and forth, adding stitches, and you end up with an uneven neckline. Then you make raglan sleeves, and sew about a zillion k's of stocking stitch. And after that you have many, many rows of charts to follow, making a cabled edging with its own icord edge.

I like it. It's actually this color:

This is me, sitting in FunBugs while the kids ran around playing for 4 hours, knitting on the neck. On the one long needle I've picked up the light green stitches, and on the other I'm knitting the cable chart, back and forth, and every time they meet I knit two stitches together. Neat!

The Bendigo Sheep and Wool Show was terrible.

I had to put up with this, and in the middle of Winter! hehe.

Here's Kathy's Fibres, one of my favorites.

I got these two in a colorway called Goldfields. One is merino and sparkly stuff, and the other is Merino/alpaca/silk.

Also got this Optim (merino) in "Sunset" because I knew Jasmine would want it. :)
Got this one from Gin and Tonic Yarns, mainly because of the cheeky Aussie name: "A dingo took my ANZAC biscuit!"

These three DK yarns from Moseley Park (and one BFL sock yarn on the right). These DK yarns are from Mum (who gave me Bendi money for my birthday). Thanks, Mum! I'm planning to make the kids each a hat from them.

Tundra from Ixchel which is ... Quiviut, Angora, Cashmere, Merino, Silk and Tencel! I can't tell you how soft it is! I'm making this one "From Kelly", since she gave me Bendigo Money for my birthday. Thanks, Kelly!

Merino/Alpaca/Silk from Moseley Park (love this mix)

And BFL/mohair from MP. Not the usual 75/25 mix I normally get from Kathy's Fibres that's so nice for socks, but then, I might 2ply it with some straight BFL, and that will make the mix right.
Sock needles. Love ChiaoGoo. Thought I'd try their bamboo needles for a change.
From the competition cabinets: Amazing lace,

awesome weaving,

cool felting,

and some creative little cables
Lunch :)

I also found some Madelinetosh Vintage. I could spend all my money there, but I only came home with three. Espadilles, Daffodil and Whitewash. (The names underneath are the Ravelers I pinched the pictures from, since mine are terrible.)




And then I wandered home a little earlier than usual. I did see the fashion parade, but didn't see anything worth taking pictures of. It's wool, but it's generally not knitting. I got some dinner and stopped at Lake Weerona Park and watched people, and knitted... but more on that next time.

I've got some more spinning to do.

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