Wednesday, August 26, 2015


I've been motoring along with my edging on the baby shawl. I had 35 repeats to do by Friday, so I divided it into 7/10/9/9 and today I was starting on my first lot of 9 when I paused to look at the sewing up instructions and that's when it caught my eye.

The shawl is a square, knitted diagonally, with four side borders picked up and knitted on each side, then an edging added where you pick up a stitch from the border as a stitch at the end of each second row of edging (you work sideways is what I mean). Anyway, I'd knitted my border and was 18 repeats into my edging when I finally read the instructions.

See that? "Work as for First Border from ** to **"? Yes. I did that, not a problem.

Row 60, however...

This is how you work Row 60 in the first edging you do. So I did that. For the Second Border as well.

I didn't knit the stitches left at the end of the First Border, instead I cast on another 17.

That sound you heard around 2:45 this afternoon? That was my heart breaking. It was pretty loud.

Epilogue: I posted a description of how I'd stuffed up my knitting on Facebook. My friend Chantal read it and went "Wait, how did Andrea stuff up? That's exactly what... I... did......eep".

That's right. We both stuffed up the edging completely. I've pulled back 3420 stitches, and now I'm going to sit down and knit like a freakin' demon to get it done.

Monday, August 24, 2015

The B-Side

This week I'm starting the edging on the second side of the baby shawl I'm entering in the Show next month. Yes, I truly am the rightful ruler of the kingdom of Procrastination.

Now, I have 175 stitches on the needle and I decrease 5 every ten rows. So.... 350 rows of 17 stitches for the edging, and I want to have it done by Friday.

Pffffft. Piece o'cake.

With my sanity intact?

Pffffft. No.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015


No doubt many people might object to their significant other being home sick. I read posts on Facebook about "man flu" and how husbands become all whiny and turn into sooky three year olds. I obviously married a good 'un because Felix is home for the week with a chest infection (requiring antibiotics disguised as horse pills) and I couldn't be happier.

Spending time with Felix (and no kids) is the best part of my day. When the kids are finally asleep we sit back and watch some episodes of "Archer" while finally having dinner (9:00pm is normal for dinner, yeah?) or else he heads off to play something on his PS4 while I sit behind him on the bed watching Netflix and knitting, either my own or customers'. Last night I came into our room to discover that Felix had started up Minecraft and I proceeded to sit and watch for almost three hours while he built a house and various adventures, and took in my suggestions (An all glass second floor? Why not?) and worked on a neckline for a child's jumper at the same time.

Sheer bliss.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Andrea and the terrible horrible no good very bad day

Today was just awful. It was a very bad day, the kind I haven't had in a very long time. I keep myself extra busy so I don't think too much, but sometimes all of the blah creeps in a brain crack and wham: Bad Day.

I eventually ended up at home around 11:30am with Dot in tow and a veneer of civility and kindness. I can fake it, I'm really good at that. I took one look at the dishes and thought "Nope."

Instead I sewed up a little teeny baby jumper for a customer.

Instead I cut up a brand new t-shirt and added three bands of amazing fabric Judith bought home from Germany to make Dot a dress.

I took my rubbish mood and made things with it and now I'm feeling better.

I think I'll finish the night by adding a crochet border to a knitted coat. Thank goodness for my customers.

Tuesday, August 04, 2015

Doctor Who knits.

Why aren't you?

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Pretty playthings

I sew up other people's knitting, and sometimes it's a grind. Sew up shoulders, pick up and knit a neckline, set in sleeves, get halfway and swear, re-set sleeves, sew up, steam, etc etc. I still love the end result, but it's not all that exciting.

Other times...

Look at this shawl. Look at it. Isn't it beautiful? A lovely knitter in Adelaide sent it to me to have the border sewn on to the center piece, and have it all blocked out. It was bliss from beginning to end, it really was. Lace is great fun to pin out and make whimpering puppy noises over, but it takes ages to knit and the commitment needed for this sort of shawl is absolute.

I told my customer that she wasn't allowed to use the phrase "I'm just a knitter" anymore. If you can create something like this, you're an artist.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Too much stash...

I have had a horror of a week. HORROR. Marcus managed to stay home on the first day back with a fever, went to school on Tuesday and Wednesday and by that night had been diagnosed with croup and prescribed steroids. No school for the rest of the week. Then Dot caught it. Our little poppet has never had croup and she's sleeping badly, almost choking every night. It's heartbreaking, it really is.

Still, I promised stash and stash I have. To answer the question: was a 5.5 hour drive really worth it? Oh hell yes! Chantal and I left at stupid o'clock and we still weren't the first there!

The sale was held at the back of the mill and while it was cold and early it was full of very desperate knitters, ourselves included. There were boxes of yarn everywhere and we threw ourselves into rummaging. Sadly, it was mostly acrylic. Now, acrylic has it's place in other knitter's stashes but I don't like it. It burns my hands when I knit with it, and I always swore I'd never go lower than 75% natural fiber in a yarn, no matter what.

Meet what.

This yarn was in a massive cardboard box and I took one look at the glorious orange and grey combination and said "Oooooooooo, gimme!". I grabbed every ball I could find in that colour and then saw the next desirable one.

Isn't it GORGEOUS?!? I saw, I coveted, I grabbed every ball they had. This may not sound too bad, until you learn that the two colours added up to 52 balls of 50% wool, 50% acrylic. Only 37 metres per ball, too.


I stuffed a bag full and went back to rummaging, which is how I found the three ply Dreamtime. If you can resist baby yarn in 100% wool, you're a stronger knitter than I. I bought four packets of ten balls. It was $5 a packet, could you say no?!?

Then we discovered the center of the room. The Danger Zone.

Rowan. $40 a pack of 10 balls. Oh sweet baby Jesus, the whole trip was worth it for that.

I grabbed a packet of Siena 4ply to make this cardigan, because I can look adorable, dammit!

Then Chantal bought me a packet of Felted Tweed as petrol money. I love Chantal. Who needs petrol when you can have yarn, right?

So for about 12 hours I was giddily happy, followed by Marcus with a fever at 4am.

Reality sucks, but hey...

I'm getting closer to swimming in the stuff.