Saturday, August 29, 2009


I have oooooooodles of spare time on my hands. I have a loving husband who drives me around so that I can knit when we travel (I have to pay close attention because he's still on L-plates, mind). I have a beautiful stash basket next to the couch, so I can reach in grab my current project while I watch endless hours of BBC Drama dvds on tv. I have pretty much everything except one thing:

Energy. I went back to bed at 8:30am yesterday and got up at 2:00pm. Got up this morning at 7:00am, went back to bed at 10:00am, got out of bed at 6:00pm.

I'm too tired to knit, let alone housework. I have four weeks until my due date and all I can think is "COME EARLY! I NEED TO KNIT, DAMMIT!!!"

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Ooooo, new techniques exist?!?

I finally caught up with the rest of the knitting world and tried a Magic Cast on. I generally use Turkish cast on if I'm knitting a toe-up sock (twice now and possibly never again but never say never again) so to attempt a new technique is a big push for me.

As I learn more about knitting through trial and error I am constantly learning that while the tried-and true methods work, sometimes there is a better option. The difference between a cable cast-on and a Twisted German cast-on for a sock, being one example. Or using a tubular cast on instead - there are around 4 different cast-ons called "tubular": pick one.

How to cable without a cable needle? Easy once you learn how. Casting off in rib - using a knitting needle or a sewing needle? You can do either. Intarsia is far easier than you think, as is fair-isle, leading me to wonder how many knitting projects I've put off to avoid trying something new.

There's an anonymous knitter I know who is one of the most brilliant intarsia knitters in Melbourne, if not Australia. Fearless at leaping in to try something new in colourways, jumps at the chance to use different fibres. End result? Art.

She had no idea that mattress stitch existed. All of her beautiful work was sewn up in very bulky backstitch. A five minute lesson and a new world opened up to her. It was brilliant to witness. Mind you, her work now looks perfect and a million times better than my own. Maybe I should have left her alone...

So my plan is to keep trying new ideas and old techniques because if I can't then I might as well fall back into my old ways and stagnate.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Finished Objects 2009 - #12 and #13

Looks like it's hat season again...

First up we have an old project - knitted up in two days in July.

The pattern is by Debbie Bliss, and it was FAST. Two row stripes that slowly decrease was pretty much guaranteed to be speedy, but I was actually surprised that I finished it so quickly. Felix has a mini-fetish for stripes, especially purple ones, and I'm always happy to indulge his knitting wishes. Still a bit iffy on the idea of a knitted nappy cover with the Watchmen symbol on it, though...

I think the pompom just makes it.

Second, we have my alpaca chullo.

It's not a real chullo, but I thought earflaps were a good idea for the Boitjie during a Melbourne spring.

I just had to knit alpacas into the hat in fair isle, and they look okayish, but not quite as uber-awesome as I had hoped.

Before you all start feeling sorry for George, just remember: he was hand-fed lolly bananas from the time I was 4 until now. He's been spoiled enough.

I thought that Lolli might wish to assist in the steaming of the hat, but the look of contempt says it all, really.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Finished Objects 2009 - #11

It is impossible to hold this and not giggle.

My dodecaheeeeeeeeeeedron.

Felix's first question (once he ceased squishing it and giggling) was "So when are you making one for the baby?". I think I need to make one in green and orange for the daddy before the Boitjie gets to play with this one!

I'm now wondering...should I knit a soccer ball? Just because I can?

In alpaca-y news, I'm doing okay with my 4ply. I decided against doubling it up because it's a pretty small amount, and what I have left over I want to use for more baby stuff. Possibly Saatje's Booties for a small project, or even half of a second hat.

Thursday, August 20, 2009


If you're going to label the alpaca you're selling as "8ply", shouldn't it be? This is neither the thickness of an 8ply nor does it have 8 plies.

End result: cranky knitter searching for another earflap hat pattern but in a 4ply. Smeg...

Wednesday, August 19, 2009


I'm exhausted again, not that it's surprising in my state. My mum took me off to Big W for a large amount of baby item shopping, the most expensive of which was a car seat which I apparently need to have professionally fitted. *grumblestupidlawsmessingupeverythinggrumble*

On the knitting front, despite my best intentions, I still have no idea where it's all going to go. Current thought revolves around ebay, because I have yarn that I'm never going to knit up, no matter what, and I need the space these days.

On the actual knitting front I have been a tad busy. My next few days will be taken up by the following:

1. Finishing off my Transformers cardigan - sewing in ends and steaming intarsia/fair isle into submission.
2. Stuffing and knitting the final point in my dodecaheeeeeeedron (I love saying that word).
3. Start my alpaca chullo.
4. Block my Alphabet Blanket because my mum set aside the entirety of her spare room for me to do so.

Then, there's still more. I have a list that tells me what I need to finish off (my green BSJ, my stripey cardigan) and what I still need to knit for the Boitjie (baby sling, nappy covers).

As I keep pointing out it's a really good thing I'm unemployed and have intention of getting up off the couch, isn't it?

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Pic free day, but lots of talking...

Felix is downloading updates so everything is moving at a pace that would be truly envious of a snail. I know this post will take five minutes to go up on it's own without photos at our current speed, so I'm leaving well enough alone.

Instead I'm spending the afternoon knitting away on my couch, interspersed with various housework-y jobs, such as re-arranging my entire craft area to fit all of my books in. My dad has been very slowly dropping round boxes of books we stored when we moved last year - I say slowly, because he knows what I'm like with books: open box, exclaim "Oh, I haven't read this in ages!", open book, start reading, wander into kitchen and make a cup of tea, settle in for the afternoon.

My craft books are kind of scary. I have the needlework books and magazines, which includes a three year "Inspirations" subscription. I have the weaving (my diploma major) books and magazines, some of which are pretty rare. I have the knitting section, which has Interweave Knits, Knit1, Vogue Knitting, Yarn and Creative Knitting (the early ones, which had slightly more original patterns in them) as only some of the magazines. The knitting book section grows depending on the Amazon sale at the time. I bought "Knit 2 Together", "Handknit Holidays" and "The Knitters Almanac" for the same price as "Handknit Holidays" cost in Borders and they arrived in 8 working days. Why would you shop elsewhere?

Anyway... I'm somewhat short of room, as my favourite old stash cupboard has been stolen for the use of the Boitjie and he seems to have an awful lot of stuff already. Clothes, soft toys (mostly my old ones!), knitwear, it all adds up. So I moved all of my knitting stash, two very overstuffed plastic storage boxes, into our lounge and dumped them in the open shelving in the corner. There they stay, along with my embroidery supplies, weaving supplies, miscellaneous craft thingies (don't look at me like that, I know you have them too!) and all of my knitting books.

My problem is that the entire top shelf is knitting baskets, bags and storage containers containing either unfinished objects or loose stash (in one case nothing but baby yarns for the knitting) that I need to store elsewhere, which I can't because our flat is short on storage spots (it has none) and I can't work out what to move to where because I fear The Unborn One is robbing me of common sense along with my eyesight.

End result: tonight I plan to utilise the brain power of my beloved Felix to work out a solution and help me move things while I direct from the couch. Here's hoping it works...

Monday, August 17, 2009

Finished Objects 2009 - #10

It appears that the only way the outside world will know what I'm knitting is if I keep up a post a day routine. Let's see how long I can last... (I give me until tomorrow)

I swear if I was more tired, I'd be asleep. As it is, I have a scant six weeks until Boitjie's arrival, and he's making his present felt via exhausting his mother, copious heartburn and trying to break out via the side using his feet as the means of escape.

Luckily, I plan to forgive him and cloth him in knitting, such as these green booties. I used the last of my Shiloh Silky 8ply that I used on my Kingsford Smith hat.

The pattern is Ruth's Perfect Baby Booties, and it's a pretty easy pattern with nice shaping, and in my case the opportunity to learn grafting garter stitch - pretty much the same as grafting stocking stitch but just repeat the front at the back ie purl, then knit for each stitch.

Are newborn feet this big? I mean really?!? Should I start panicking now???

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Possible blog name change

After the last four days I think I might have to change my blog name to "Let Me Sew!".

It started on Sunday, with a new curtain, trimming on a bathmat, a tablecloth and lengthening my niece's sports pants.

On Monday, it was a small pincushion organiser.

On Tuesday, it was a Spotlight visit and a quilted basket/block.

Today, it's another quilted block, only larger.

Felix suggested "Let Me Craft!" but after I pointed out that I hated the c-word, he backed down...