Monthly Archives: January 2008

I finally did it!

I got a tetanus shot, whoo!  Yeah, the same one I have been putting off since mid September last year.  I am a huge wuss, it goes without saying.  I knew I’d be fine, but I am unreasonably fearful of needles.  Unfortunately knowing just how unreasonable it is, hasn’t made it go away yet.  Not good considering that it is my goal to donate blood someday, it would seem that it will take me a long time to work my way up to that.  Oh dear.

 So anyway.  This now means I am allowed to process raw fleece, about time too.  I have some stinky corriedale, English Leicester and alpaca.  I have carders (thanks again Dad for getting those, you rock) too.  Now I can make me some rolags of spin-able fibre, yippee!  Actually, maybe I’ll begin with one of my bags of bright mystery wool from the fibre stash (Yes, I already have one of those.  Yes, I know that is sad.) 

Yeah, maybe this one?  Well, as you can see the investment was not a large one and it is certainly colourful enough.

I have a finished object to show you all.  For once *ahem*  Last Friday, the boyfriend casually mentioned we had a 1st birthday party to attend on Sunday.  Aw crap, seems he still doesn’t realise that events like this require knitting.  Though I don’t think he had a whole lot more notice himself, so it isn’t a huge deal.  So what can I whip up in just over a days knitting time?  Well, technically most little kiddie items can be whipped up in a day and a half if you don’t have anythingelse to do and you are not attached to working in fine gauges.  But see I decided to go with something small, considering that I am not to be trusted when it comes to crafting within a set time-frame.   So here it is…

The pic doesn’t really show it, but I made this thing a tad big.  It is my hope that it will be a perfect fit by winter.  I was able to get it over my noggin without trouble, so it should be right.  Poor little fella was not impressed at having to wear this thing in the lunch-time heat.  I don’t blame him and was quite happy for him whip it off in a second.  His grandma kept putting it back on though, I couldn’t tell you why really.  Like I said, poor little fella.

Here is one that shows off the yarn.  I am quite proud of the dye-job, which I did as soon as I got home Friday night after work.

Everything I had in stash was too girlie.  Some would have been OK had he been a newborn still.  But this little man is into running about and I didn’t see him crawl once.  So he isn’t a baby anymore, he needed a more blokey hat.  I nearly went with a camo look, but I am so glad I went with blue over khaki.  It suits him.

The green and blue are both Easter egg dyes, though the green has been brightened up with a little fluro food colour.  A recent acquisition from the US that.  The black is food colouring.  What’s new here is that I didn’t use Wilton’s for once.  No,  I used Queen, an old Aussie staple.  I am quite surprised that it worked wonderfully.  I loved the way the black behaved and I was able to get it to do exactly what I wanted without fuss.  I will be buying more of this for my stash for sure.  It is hard to get in the black mind you, I have only ever seen it once (Coles, Myer Centre in Brisbane just for reference).  I started buying Wilton’s because I like to used a fair bit of marzipan when I do flash cake decoration.  Queen is no good for it, being liquid.  The powder colours I have found around here suck, so I ended up with Wilton’s gel.  I have been using it ever since, so never considered liquid for yarn dyeing either.  Well, after this weeks success, I will be testing out more colours.  Stay tuned.

Now, just what on earth do I do with the other 2 and a half balls?  Heh 🙂

I have been making progress on the monumental nursing shawl I am knitting for Lady Llanalla.  I have reached the halfway point, yarn-wise.  However, I have not reached the halfway point, length-wise.  This means I need more yarn, of course.  A significant hurdle indeed.  Not only did I choose tho use a yarn that is not available in Australia, it was ordered about 7 months ago.  I have Buckley’s chance of getting more of the same dye lot.  Pooh!  So I have been searching Ravelry for Knit Picks shine sport in peoples trade/sell pages.  I figure that with 2 balls of cream and another two of an entirely different colour will do the trick.  Oh yeah!  I was waaaaay off the mark.  I have found a number of prospects and have been sending out messages, I just hope I get a bite.  I found a fair few stashes of other tempting things while I was searching.  Like alpaca/silk blended Andean Silk and Shimmer, which is a pretty lace weight.  Heh, just another reason to love Ravelry.

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Filed under Dyeing, Finished Objects, General Happenings, Knitting, Spinning, Works In Progress

mid Jan update

OK well, I still have not finished the nursing shawl for Lady Llanalla.  But I will show a pic of what it is looking like, but be warned it doesn’t look exciting yet.  This pic was taken over a week ago, it is bigger now.

I have not made any more progress on my socks.  None on the most recently cast-on One Skein Wonder either.  Both are patiently waiting for when I need nursing shawl breaks.  I have already had two such breaks mind you.  The first resulted in a Sugar’n’Cream dishcloth in twisted texture stitch, a new stitch for me, lifted right out of my Harmony Stitch Guides (vol 3, I think).  I doubt anyone wants to see that, so no pics, but I can get ’em if need be, it has not seen any scrubby action as yet.  

Oh and the other break produced this.

It is from a tiny skein of my Acid hand-spun, not the one I have in my Ravelry stash.  Which was my third ever wheel spinning effort.  No this skein came from the fibre leftovers from that.  That is why it is sooo short, the colours did not twist together as much with this one either.  What I find funny is how at the cast on edge, the colour repeat is only just enough for a single (seven stitch) row – just before the halfway mark this average bumps up to just a little more than 3 rows.  This is because the yarn was spiral dyed.  Had this yarn been spun from a leftover section that had been from the full length of the skein (it was only half), the repeats would have grown in width once more.

Know what else I have not done?  I still have not spun up that merino/tencel fibre I flashed at you all last week.  Ooops!  I still have not decided what to knit from that purty purple Lorna’s Laces from last post either.  I am now leaning towards a fingerless pair of Motorcycle Chica Gloves (from the Summer ’07 issue of Interweave Knits mag http://www.interweaveknits.com/preview/2007_summer.asp ) but I am still unsure.  Maybe I should make a lace scarf?  Dunno.  To make matters worse in the ‘I am indecisive about what to make from my luxury sock yarn’ department, have received more.  This ball from the lovely Spiraling from Ravelry.

Whoo!  I am sooo not complaining about this 🙂  The colours are luscious.  Mmmm  I love me some stripy and multi-coloured socks, and few do that as well as Noro.  Yeah for Noro Kuyreuon Sock!

To be fair, I have finished the last of the spinning and finishing of the yarn for my Nana.  I am looking forward to the excuse to bust out my ball winder again.  Time for another cake party, wanna join me?

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Filed under Knitting, UnFinished Objects

New tools, WIPs and yarn. PIC HEAVY

Meet Hank everyone.

…and just in case you weren’t sure just which Henry I named it for…

I am certain you will agree that Hank sounds more yarny than Henry 🙂  The bust was one of my Christmas presents, by the way.

I promised to show off my new drop spindles too, so here they are.

Paua shell above, and jade below.

Both are from ButterflyGirl’s Etsy store.  Should I be concerned that her drop spindles are habit forming?  Her stuff now accounts for more than half of my drop spindle collection, and that that includes the broken ones.  Haw!

Alas I have been too busy since the arrival of these toys and I have not had a chance to play with them.  But I know what I’ll be spinning when I make time though.  Merino tencel blend fibre hand dyed by Ewe Give Me The Knits.  Yummy!  It is as shiny as it looks too.  Can’t wait.  I think I’ll spin it fine and Navajo ply it, but we’ll see.

Anyways.  Obviously it is still Christmas at Miss Vicki’s place, goodies just keep arriving.   One arrival that was a great relief to me was that of my new Knit Picks Options set.

OK, so I didn’t really NEED more needles. bUt you know how it is, and besides, that is why I lay-by’d the set instead of shelling out over a hundred bucks for them right away.  Yes, you heard that right, they cost me a lot 😦  You can see why I was concerned when I finally went to pick them up last month, and was told they were lost.  Arghhh!  Like I needed another reason to complain about my local yarn store!  But eventually they were found and posted to me.  I am much happier now that I have been able to test them out, very nice indeed.  My first project using them is a shawl for Lady Llanalla, in fact I had put off casting on for it so I could take advantage of the extra long cord in the set.  I need to get cracking on that now too.  This shawl is to be a nursing cover up, and as the Lady’s baby has now been born I am sorely behind.  CONGRATS LARRY!!!

That is tools taken care of.  What else did I promise you pictures of?  Oh yeah yarn.  Well, I ought to start with the merino and silk yarn I mentioned just a few posts ago.  It is only fair seeing as I have already flashed the un-spun fibres at you.  Remember?  I was going to spin a 2 ply yarn for my Nana’s 75th Birthday, one of merino and the other silk.  Well, here is what it looks like.

One more pic to prove this was a Hank spun effort, below.  That is the merino strand you are looking at.

I think Nana really liked it.  She is yet to swatch and decide for certain, but she is planing on knitting a Snakes and Ladders Shawl out of it.  I have so far spun 3 of the 4 skeins, I just hope that the thickness has not changed any.  I am scared that it will because I have already given her the first two skeins. 

More yarn.  This is what I received from my secret Santa.  Thanks Djdhaysjr, you rock!

It is soft and yummy.  My feet are gonna love it 🙂

You wanna see my current FOs?  We’ll OK, but I can’t show the nursing shawl yet.  Not that it is a surprise or anything.  Just that it didn’t photograph well against a cream background.  Yeah, it is cream, so of course that didn’t work.  LOL.  What I can show you is another One Skein Wonder.  This was taken when I was halfway done.

I only have ribbing left to do now.  But I am saving that for when I get sick of the plain cream knitting of the nursing shawl.  I can’t help it, I just need colour.  If I go without for too long, I get a bit nuts.  So I have wisely (I hope) left this baby unfinished for when that time comes.  You see, because the OSW is almost finished, I need not fear my getting carried away with it.

Just a few posts back I was showing off a partially knitted sock.  Ermm, ah well, I still have not finished it. 

 

The second sock is at least 3/4 done, but I have not touched it for over a month.  Sadly it will have to wait until after I have completed the shawl.  But then I will be released from my sock slump and be free to begin a more exciting pair.  Most likely these will be in Lorna’s Laces (for obvious reasons) or Noro Sock.  Of which I may or may not have ordered a ball when no one was looking.  *cough*

Next time I’ll have for ya, the shawl WIP pictures as promised.  Some more FOs to show too, four bags I finished back in November.  Three fulled ones that I made for stash-busting purposes and one knit that was a pattern testing effort.  Before I go I wanna leave you all with the picture I have been promising to show for much longer than all the rest.  Finally!  An action shot of my awesome apron from the embroidery ring.  It is not a great pic by any stretch.  It is however, the best I have managed to take so far.

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Filed under General Happenings, Knitting, Spinning, Works In Progress

No pics yet :-(

Well, I am back from my Christmas break.  I hope you all had a great holiday, with at least a little rest in there somewhere.  Mine was quite restive, I caught up on a lot of reading, watching, crafting and more reading.  I did manage to get my new spinning wheel to work.  He has been dubbed Hank.  It could still use a good service though, to iron out the wobbles.  But I got it working well enough to work up a few skeins of a silk and merino yarn for my Nana’s 75th Birthday.  Just as well, as I hate to think how long it would have taken me on a drop spindle.  I am 550 metres down, with about another 150-ish to go.  Sadly, I don’t seem to be able to get my USB to do it’s thing this morning.  So pictures of my new wheel and Nana’s yarn will have to wait a bit 😦

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Filed under General Happenings, Spinning