Thursday, December 31, 2009

She loves her hat, but pulls the mittens straight off. Oh, well.

And this is... umm... more Jet that I bought yesterday...

It was $1.50 a ball (instead of about $6.50). Also got some 20mm needles. LOL! This is 50g worth of yarn. I'm not sure what I'm making yet, but it's very satisfying to gain about an inch every time you do one row. And it's surprisingly slow to do each stitch... awkward, I guess. I dropped one stitch, and picked it back up with my fingers. He he he.
Three and a half more hours until the new year, and it's gone from humid and warm (about 30C) to stormy in the last half-hour or so. It's almost dark (because of the clouds, at least) with some sunset poking through at the West horizon. Weird and warm and wet, with lightning.
I bet the rain gets to Melbourne just in time to wreck the fireworks. hehehehe.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009


Ok, I haven't been knitting a great deal, anyway, and what I have been knitting is baby stuff in gender-revealing colors. But on Boxing Day (Dec 26) my family met to have lunch together, and since there were so many of us, the Four Sisters dumped a collective half-dozen kids on the boys and went to the craft shop. Everything was 30% off, which is always a great excuse.
I knew I didn't need any yarn, but I do like a bit of Jet, and this one

was chatting to me as I went past... "Hey... Jasmine needs a hat... so what if you've got 6 balls of Jet at home; you need some colors!"
Needless to say, this little tiny "Robin's Egg Blue" hat only took a few evenings, and only that long because I ripped half of it out to make it longer.

Actually, the way it striped blue and red annoys me a bit. I like it better in a ball! hehe. I made some easy mitts with the leftovers, and I liked how the color changes worked between stripes of grey. Of course, I only used the stripes because I didn't have quite enough leftovers for two.
The mitts are a little rectangle, 15st wide and about 25 long, a bit of garter on each edge, seamed with a thumbhole space. Jasmine was Not patient enough to put up with a photo shoot (and it's a bit hot for wool right now) but at least she's now got the hat I've been meaning to make since Winter... ;)

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Dioxyribonucleic acid

This is a fun little toy! Squishy, cuddley DNA Ü

I made each sugar-phosphate twistie with 10 stitches on two 3mm circulars. One one side you just knit, and on the other side you increase at the one edge and decrease at the other. I wasn't convinced it was twisting for quite a while, but it works...

Then I put them together with my DPN-skewered base pairs, which were 6-stitch icords (11 rows) with the ladder crocheted up, and awkwardly tacked them on. Awkward, because it was as hard to hold as a cactus ;)

You can stretch it out, though the twistiness rebels and springs right back...

Sorry for the color-leeching. I'd already said on Rav that the base pair colors matched Baby Three's cotton singlets, and baby's gender is still a secret.
Meanwhile, here are my two actual contributions to the DNA-pool, KO'd yesterday after running around with Grandma. Filthy, but cute Ü. Don't you just love kids a tiny bit more when they're asleep? hehe.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

All Tara's fault

And she knows it, crazy Twilight-enabler.

These are Knucks, perfect for a hot almost-Summer premiere of "New Moon" this Thursday.

It's been cooking for the last 2 weeks, even though it's only November, but I made these to entertain my friend, Chantelle, who is shouting me a ticket on opening day. (I'm her T-enabler. Mwa ha ha!) She plans to entertain us by going into labor half-way through the movie.

Love the finger-down construction. Was fun making 10 teeny finger-stumps. The yarn is 5% cashmere and 95% wool, so it's a bit fluffy and nice and warm. (Just what I need!)

Originally I had the cover of "Eclipse" in mind... a nice simple twisted red ribbon on the cover. Nearly kicked the wall when I got around to actually looking! But my little flower worked out pretty well, I thought.

Did it in white, then painted a mix of food dye and vinegar on with the darning needle. Microwaved it to set the color (hopefully). Wish I could have done the letters more neatly, but, oh well...
Less than 48 hours until we go see it ;)

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Just in time...

Tomorrow my youngest brother turns 26! I thought I would whip this up for him, quick as a flash...
His birthday dinner was today, and I was only up to the decreases. But I had time. Nathan was taking Byron to the steam rally, and it would just be the girl and I at home. Unfortunately, Jasmine seems to believe that if Byron isn't there to play with, I should play with her all day instead! So I got about 3 rows done while the boys were away.
After the grocery shopping I had about an hour before heading off to the birthday barbecue which, as it happens, is not quite enough time. Instead, I was finishing it off when Matt arrived at our parents' place. Never mind... he didn't pay any attention to my knitting until it was finished and wrapped and I gave it to him (after a quick pic in Mum's bathroom) Ü
Here's a recent bit of handspun from the purple-ish stuff I got. I'm finding it hard to mix in all the colors because I'd rather just split the batt into thinner strips... which you can't really do when you don't want to separate all the colors. I tried, though. Drawing from the whole batt seems a bit hard for this novice...

Also finished the Mystery Bag KAL (which finished without me many moons ago). I'm so sick of it, and I don't much like the finished project. Even though it's Bendigo rustic (which I'm told felts well) I can't make it felt. So it's big and kind of floppy. I did these handle mods:

after realizing that I hated the cable ones. Only did one side, and I didn't mind the cable idea, but it's too fat (and certainly too pink). Neither can I be bothered doing any pockets. Not sure if I'll use it much! Might be fun to do a teeny one, though... hehe.

Thursday, October 15, 2009


I actually made it to a knitting group night this month, though as I was leaving, I realized all I had on the needles (that I could be bothered to do) was for the new baby in a give-away-the-secret sort of color. What to knit.....? I grabbed Ysolda's tiny book and some freckley skin-toned Cleckheaton country 8ply and headed off.

The woman at the restaurant asked if I was here for a birthday or... what? I told her I was looking for knitters, and she took me around to a fireplace surrounded by armchairs full of knitters ;) Very cosy and nice, especially after they turned up the lights a bit more.

The baby top has been neglected ever since, until I finished this little project:

Decided to knit on some knickers ;) You start at the top of the head and knit down to the toes, no seams, kind of like the kimono top I'm doing for the bub. I liked the freckles.
The instructions for hair didn't work out for me, mainly because it was so easy to pull strands out. So I put them in individually, folding them in half, threading the loop through a stitch and pulling the ends through the loop, as you do with fringes on a scarf. The hair's a cheap version of Zhivago, and it was pretty messy until I waved her over the kettle steam and it magically straightened! If only it was that easy in real life...

The dress was Cleckheaton tapestry, I think.

It's Jasmine's doll, but Byron has adopted her for now. He he he.
Back of the dress... I'm sure I'll make some more clothes, since they're so easy and fun.

And that's about all I've been doing, you know, in all my spare time. Ü

Sunday, October 4, 2009


My second attempt at the spinning wheel when I FINALLY got the thing to work. The first attempt was binned ;)

Two plies of it became this. It's 95g of very wobbly yarn that is probably too dodgy to have a useful purpose... perhaps it's just as well, as it would probably knit up to look like carpet anyway!

Then I abandoned everything in a sudden urge to make more Tiny Shoes. These ones are in Jitterbug castagna, and are for my friend's new girl, Adelaide. So hard to get good buttons here at Spotlight. They have hundreds of boring ones, though! But I liked these sparkley ones...

They're softer than the last shoes I made, and don't stand up on their own so well. So they're not too easy to photograph, and my camera doesn't like close-ups or true colors ;) ....never mind.

Here's my old (drop spindled) sky blue stuff, finished a bit before I found out if this baby's a boy or girl. I haven't started knitting anything from my blue or pink yet, but I am knitting a few secret things. Not sure what to make with thick handspun yet... especially for a Summer baby.

Well, time to oil up the wheel and try some more spinnerings...

Friday, September 25, 2009

40 in 1

A while ago some people in Ravelry got together and split 40 balls of Bendigo Woollen Mills Luxury 4ply (one of each color). Here is my little collection.

I decided I had to do a project that included them all, so it became a sideways garter stitch scarf. (This decision was based on my strong desire not to have to weave in eighty ends Ü)

I just did a row of each color, holding the yarn doubled and using 4mm needles. So there's a row of purly bumps on each side in each color.

It's 120g. I had lots of left-overs in all the colors except what I used to cast on and off (probably because I was using a bigger needle). I think there were about 240 stitches per row, and it's 125cm long (175cm with the fringe). It's only 10cm wide, though. Garter stitch is so compacted. But it's nice and thick, soft and warm.

A finished object! About time... Ü
BTW, Happy 10th Anniversary to me! (and my dear hubby, Nathan, of course Ü)

Thursday, September 24, 2009

No spinning tonight.

I got a note in the mailbox today, saying there was a package at the post office for me. (The postie drives a little car and so can't be bothered delivering most packages himself...) So we all drove over to the post office and I picked up my spinning wheel accessories, plus this little wee bit of fibre to spin...

Only 500g... Ü ... plus a little bit of sock wool...

Now the drive band turned out to be exactly like the cheap string you can buy at the supermarket, and the brake band looks like fishing line. One part we were missing (a pin to hold one end of the brake band) is not part of the kit, apparently, so Nathan is going to whip one up in the shed if I don't find one in town tomorrow. So no spinning tonight. Sigh.

Without the brake band I can't even get it to pull string through onto the bobbin, so I can't even play with it, and I'm feeling very... um... mechanically challenged. My brain doesn't appear to work that way. I fiddled with it for a bit before Nathan noticed and took pity on me. He knows exactly what's what (from doing a tiny bit of internet research some time ago) and how to alter it, if I like, to do this and that... He knows the answers, where I can't understand the questions. lol.

I think I will spin the white stuff first. There's 200g to practise on, and I can dye it later. The purple one... not my color usually, but everything suits cute little kids. I'm not sure why I bought orange, yellow and brown fibre, except to see what happens. hehe.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Look at ewes...

After all the work I'm going to do, hand-washing, hand-carding, hand-dyeing, hand-spinning and hand-knitting fleece into cute knitted things, it's almost wrong that it could look so good in it's original unhandled form!

Look at these little cuties. We picked up these girls on Sunday. They're both two, and ready to be sheared (along with Barley and Daisy), so soon I'll have 4 fleeces to play with, along with a little bit of... um... fiber I might have bought from EGMTK when ordering some bands for my spinning wheel. I may never have time to knit again!
Does anyone have a brilliant name suggestion up their sleeve? Or two? ;)

Friday, September 18, 2009

Slacker report

Not a lot of knitting has been going on, I must say. Occasionally I do a row of my 40-color scarf, but I've completed very few things. I got this in the mail, finally, after a few minor ebay hassles. Cost me $150 (including postage). I am now waiting for EweGiveMeTheKnits to get some more accessory kits so I can replace the drive band and the brake band. They weren't included, but since it's an ancient Ashford Traditional, they no doubt needed replacing anyway Ü

The very friendly woman of EGMTK says that it's a hardy model, and can stand up to the enthusiastic attention of a two-year-old no worries, so Byron has been spinning the wheel a little...

I did finish a couple of these. 30 stitches wide, 40 rows, with 10 stitches of garter stitch on one side and 3 on the other. Hardly worth writing about

but they do look cute on his little hands.

I also finished these tiny boots for the new bub. Nathan thinks they're too small, but it was a fun way to use up some of that nice cashmerino I made my Ishbel from.

I started them before I knew if it was a boy or girl, because I figured it was a pretty neutral pattern and color.
Now to get back to the other kids before they trash the other room... little monkeys. How do they always know when you feel a bit tired and queasy? They always choose those days to go mad! Oh well... today is Friday, and I can run away as soon as Nathan gets home from work! I get Friday nights off for Shopping and Bludging ;)

Monday, August 31, 2009

Toys Ü

This is on the way to my house, just as soon as the ebay seller figures out how to dismantle it for postage. Not many people are prepared to post their spinning wheels, so I appreciate her effort a lot! Yay!

She says it's an Ashford of some sort.

Must get onto that blue yarn... I've done one 25g single and started the other. But I've been trying to finish a few things (my opal socks and my Mystery bag), and I keep getting distracted by a good book, the computer... and, you know, looking after those noisy ratbags. Plus, every time I get a bit of time to myself, like when they both sleep at the same time after lunch, I end up falling asleep myself. Progress on Everything is sloooow...

Monday, August 24, 2009

Thanks, tax return!

Today we went out to MacDonalds. They have chips, a playground and lots of kids. What else could a one and two-year-old want? Jasmine is brave enough to climb the steps and slide down the slide now, which is fun (she's pretty proud of herself, too). I sat there knitting the black toe of a second sock. I didn't get much done!

I picked this up at the post office on the way there:

Sunspun sent me a bag full of stash enhancement. This is Jitterbug number 128, which looks mostly brown on the website, but in real life is all sorts of pink/purple and green. Very nice. Can't believe I originally wanted something else that wasn't in stock.

And some Noro sock yarn, numbers S150 and S236.

And then some Noro Taiyo (number 2), which is cotton and wool, and is apparently Jasmine's favorite

And more sock needles (a pair of 2.5mm, 4ocm circulars) so that I can cast on new ones, even if I haven't yet finished the old ones Ü

I think I have enough sock wool to last me until my kids are all in school, including the unborn one! Does anyone think that's too much? hehe.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Girls and boys

Here's what became of the pink. It's a two ply that is 15wpi/ 78m/ 50g. So I can't seem to classify it as a certain weight, but when I use it, I'll just see which size needle fits best! I liked the specky white effect that accidently occurred because I was trying to make it pale, and instead the dye just got used up before it reached the middle.

On the hand-spindle now is the blue, which is a bit less speckly. It's a very cheerful sunny-sky shade of blue, and looks just like the sky outside right now, which, in spite of the season, is almost completely clear of clouds. Byron was out in short sleeves today!

Here are the three nephews' hats: Tim's is "apple", Ben's is "denim" and Ezra's is "mocha". It's Ezzie's birthday in two days, so I have to try to post them later today, when the kids wake up.

They're so thick and squishy! I did them all on 6mm needles with two strands of alpaca rich 8ply held together. Byron's tried them all on. He was sneaking them off the table (where I was wrapping them) and trying to get outside before I noticed. I think he'd like some color rather than his plain grey.

I had three 200g balls of Alpaca Rich, and I've now got about 320g left, so I used less than 100g per hat. Plenty left Ü. I'm a bit tired of 3x2 rib, but it's such a good hat that I'll probably make myself one of each color!
Three more weeks and we will (hopefully) get to find out whether we're having a boy or a girl this time. I should have the blue spun by then (so if it's a boy I can cast on something straight away, even though the poor thing will be born in mid-Summer). It felt like a girl at first (and they are undoubtably more fun to shop for), but then I've seen so many cute boys lately that I'm starting to wish it could be somehow both. Sigh.
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