Stash appreciation and LYS day

Over Easter I had a stash appreciation day with my ‘living room yarn stash’. Whilst it’s always a good idea to stop and smell the roses, or take stock of how much bloody yarn you have, I’m afraid stash appreciation day was born out of a sore hand. I didn’t want to risk hurting my hand any further, so what is a knitter to do if they can’t knit?!

Playing with yarn, is almost as good as knitting with it. I could give it a try for at least one day anyway. So I pulled out all of my ikea boxes and spread out the stash across the coffee table.IMG_7287IMG_7288My hand-dyed sock yarn takes pride of place in my ‘collection’, I’m powerless against a beautiful skein of delicious yarn.

I quite like pink…IMG_7290… sprinkled with greenIMG_7291IMG_7293… think of the amazing sock yarn blanket I would be able to make with the left-overs of these skeins?  Only if they were left-overs and not complete skeins…

So I reorganised my boxes and tried to place the skeins in more logical places, for the record I remember purchasing each of the yarns I ‘found’. There weren’t any surprises, just lots of love for the yarn I have collected; and ideas, I’m looking forward to starting some new projects once things return to normal.

If you don’t have a LYS (local yarn store) at home (like me!), it’s LYS appreciation day next Saturday. I know that Sunspun in Melbourne is participating and offering a generous discount on that day. You should go, you might see me there!

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So liberating

The knitting of the body of my Ursula cardigan was finally complete last week.IMG_7262IMG_7263It then took days and days of reinforcing the steek stitches in order to prepare for cutting my knitting.IMG_7264Reinforcing the front and the armholes using crochet stitchesIMG_7267Then it was finally time to cut. I was slow and careful, only cutting one or two strands at a time. It was thrilling and satisfying. IMG_7268IMG_7271It was rather fun. So far it seems nothing is falling apart.

I’ll be in sleeve island if anyone is looking for me, I hope it’s a short stay.

The pom-pom dress

IMG_7076I’ve always been fond of a good pom-pom, even more so since Clover came out with the best pom-pom makers ever. So it’s of little surprise to me that I was immediately attracted to this pom-pom fabric when I spotted it in Spotlight a number of months ago.DSC_9111I was in the market for some knit fabric to make another Coco dress by Tilly and the Buttons. So against my better judgment (am I ever going to sew projects that look normal?!) I purchased the fabric like a giddy child.DSC_9107Months went by, I eventually I cut out the fabric… then a few more months passed… and one weekend (day) I sewed all the pieces together. I had to keep cutting away some of the pom-poms that were too close to the seam lines. You try getting your machine over one of those pom-poms, with or without a walking foot!

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DSC_9109And my pom-pom dress is finished. I have to say, I’m pretty delighted with it. I could make another five Coco dresses, it’s a great pattern. Straightforward to make and so comfortable to wear. This is the second one I’ve made, the first was red and white striped.DSC_9112I also somehow managed to have the pom-poms not fall directly on the apex of my breasts!

The jury is still out on whether I can actually wear this to work with some leggings in winter, what do you think?

My Sophie Cardigan

I have a sister named Sophie, unfortunately for her this cardigan is all mine! It’s the Sophie Cardigan by Jennifer Wood. It was finished last year, but it’s only just got it’s photoshoot now.DSC_9034 (1)The yarn was a Stitches West purchase from a couple of years ago. It’s Miss Babs Kaweah. I love the colour. DSC_9037A couple of my SF friends did a knit-along with me. Monica finished first, she’s so speedy. I finished about a month or two later… and last I heard it was sitting in the naughty corner for Sarah. The pattern whilst it is ingenious, it’s not without it’s clarity problems.DSC_9060DSC_9061And after being published for 4 or more years, I got an errata notification for it this week! It’s still a great pattern, and I say go for it if you’re thinking about it.ORG_DSC07953One of the reasons it hadn’t been photographed up to this point, is the cropped nature of it… I wish I had of lengthened it, as it would fit into the wardrobe I have now a lot better. ORG_DSC07960ORG_DSC07966ORG_DSC07973But I still love it.

My Ursula cardigan is progressing really well. I wonder what ‘girl’ named sweater I’ll knit next?

The gift box conundrum and why I feel like a terrible person

I’ve heard of knitters who gift knit all year round, not for anyone in particular, but for ‘the gift box’. The handy box which can be turned to in time of an emergency for a last-minute-gift.

I wrote about knitting a sweet little baby cardigan for ‘friends’ of ours. But sometime between casting-on the project and missing my deadline, did I realise that our friendship well, wasn’t. exactly. what. I. thought. It’s a bit embarrassing really, but it’s no big deal.

Since then I’ve debated with myself ‘to just send them the cardigan, you made it for them after all’. But then the practical side of me says, ‘hey, don’t be daft and give a special gift to people who are just going to feel awkward about receiving it’. And hey ‘what a great little gift for the gift box, keep it for a rainy day’. Be practical!

Clearly, I’ve been overthinking it.

So here’s one for the gift box, it also joins a couple of hats that I knit last year.

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Sweet Bunting by Laura Chau

The best laid plans

Damian and I celebrated our 15 year wedding anniversary this weekend by visiting Kyneton. It’s a lovely peaceful place with some wonderful foodie places to eat.

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It was my intention to hand-over the baby cardigan this weekend (that I began last Sunday). But that didn’t eventuate for a couple of reasons, mainly because the cardigan is not finished!

On Tuesday night, I went to see the Phantom Thread with my movie going girlfriends. I got to the cinema nice and early… but I didn’t have my knitting on me. A very rookie mistake.

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I’ve had a busy week otherwise, without a lot of time to knit. That’s when realisation struck. That even if I got the cardigan finished before the weekend, there would be no time to wash and block it. Now, I’m a stickler for handing over knitted things that have been washed, particularly when the recipient is a baby.

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So instead, when I packed for the weekend, I packed all of my projects bar the baby cardigan. I didn’t want to beat myself up about it, and after all the weekend was for relaxation.

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I did forgot to pack one very important thing though. At least one pair of hand-knit socks. I always wear my socks at home and whilst I am away. So sadly my feet were frozen! I don’t think I’ll ever forget them again.

It was a lovely weekend with plenty of delicious food. I even got a few rows in on my Ursula cardigan. I’m loving this.

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Setting myself up for quite the challenge!

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I don’t know how this has happened. I need to knit a baby cardigan in under a week…

I’ve known for at least a month that we’d be seeing friends of ours who are pregnant this coming weekend… and yet, I’ve only just cast-on? I’ve never been one for doing things last-minute, when you’re a knitter, naturally you’re a planner because nothing happens fast! Perhaps deep down, I thought that if I set my fingers to it, it could be done. But now that I’ve cast on, I’m not so sure.

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I’m making the second size (6-9months), because I wouldn’t want the baby to grow out of it in 2 weeks. This only adds a few hundred extra stitches.

I’m making ‘Sweet Bunting’ for a second time. If I’m doing baby knitting, it’s going to be cute and adorable. The first ‘Sweet Bunting’ I made, pictured below was for one of my niece’s two years ago.

Pretty cute huh?

I don’t know what flavour this baby is going to be, so I’ve gone for some neutrals.

Wish me luck!

Eventually, I get the hint

My dear friend Deb… is a bit of a stirrer, so she totally deserves some recognition on my blog.

As knitting friends we’ve exchanged many fibre gifts over the years of our friendship. Nothing makes me happier than buying knitty gifts for friends, even better if they’re as nuts about knitting as you are.

If I ever give you the impression that I have too much yarn and it is the last thing I would want as a gift because I have so much… you’d be wrong!

Over time, Deb has chipped away at some of the yarny gifts I’ve given her. But it has suddenly dawned on her, I have never knit with any of the yarn she has given to me. And she’d be right… because I have too much yarn.

So about two or more months ago, what started as subtle prodding to blatant announcements at knit night (she really is a friend!) about the state of affairs, that I have never knit with any of her gifts… I finally got the hint.

I’ve cast-on these Broken Seed Stitch socks in the Skein yarn: Top Drawer sock yarn. The yarn along with the project bag was a birthday gift in 2016. The yarn is delicious, the pattern is delightful. Debs has also knit this pattern about the time the yarn was given to me, so the project has always been set in my mind. I look very much forward to finishing these socks, I hope it will get me out of trouble for now!

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January stash acquisitions

Thank heavens Damian is home from his work trip. I did miss him and it’s been the longest time we’ve been apart for some time.

The thing is, whilst he’s been away, I had been buying yarn like there is no tomorrow… it’s been thrilling, oh what a rush!

The yarn buying began with a trip to Sunspun, then as the weeks went on with Damian away, I just happened to have gotten ‘lucky’ with a few hard-to-get online indy hand dyer updates. In the final weekend I purchased from 4 different online dyers!!! Anything to distract you from the fact that you are home alone, am-I-right? I figured if I could get some cherished colours into my cart and make it to the payment window, it was meant to be!

As I said at the start, thank goodness he’s home, I’m hoping my yarn buying habit will settle down for now, at least until the Bendigo Wool Show in July.

This is what has arrived so far…

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Some ‘Miss Click Clack,’ who is a talented and super-nice Melbourne-based dyer. I bought a jumpers worth of yarn in a delicious semi-solid, tonal grey. I thought I had picked out a cardigan to make with this yarn, but I’m now reconsidering my choice. This yarn is just so beautiful. The Pantone colour card came with the yarn, I love this.

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I also returned to the Stranded Dyeworks shop update to pick up some ‘anti-Valentine’ in her sparkle sock yarn, which I’d missed out on a fortnight ago… then whilst I was there I also got a new colour called Heliograph, because I’m already paying for the shipping!

I’m really happy with both these skeins.

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I’m gathering up quite a collection of Amy’s pinky colour ways, they are pretty similar, with subtle variations of hue. They could become a project altogether? Perhaps a fade jumper?

There’s a couple more packages to arrive in the post and I’ll fill you in on their details once they arrive.

p.s. I’m quite capable of buying yarn whilst Damian is around, he is my enabler after all.