A close finish

Last week I wrote how I was on the home stretch to finishing my knee-high Fluorite socks in a KAL with my sister.

On the weekend, I went out for dinner with just a few rows left to go on my socks…  Whilst D was in the restroom I checked my emails on my phone… and saw this message from my sister…

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Can you believe it?! I certainly couldn’t! It serves me right for thinking I could come first in KAL (yes Knit-alongs are a race!)

I’m happy for my sister and I’m happy for me because my socks are now also finished.

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A tale of two sisters

Late last year, when I had no business casting-on for an unplanned project (I was in the middle of knitting accessories for our Christmas visit to New York)… I got an email from my sister who lives in Perth.

A bit of back story first. S and I were avid knitters as teenagers. I didn’t stop knitting since that time. S on the other hand, has returned to knitting in the last year or so with vengeance. Now many things have changed in ‘the knitting world’ since we were young. Well, we now have… Ravelry and there’s ‘Unicorn’ yarn and the crazy updates that go along with purchasing unique hand dyed yarn, indy pattern designers etc.

So back to the email, S was pretty miffed about not being able to purchase La Bien Aimée yarn for the Andrea Mowry Fluorite socks knit-along, because it had sold out when she happened to have looked at their online store. I was not surprised, I don’t even have any La Bien Aimée yarn in my stash!

Being the good sister and enabler that I am. I wanted to help her find an alternative yarn for her project so that she could participate in the knit-along during Thanksgiving. I spent more than half a day ‘researching’ and compiling skeins of yarn that could be purchased within Australia at a fraction of the cost of a La Bien Aimée kit.

And this is where I came unstuck… I decided I needed to join her for this knit along! Such is the way when you’re ‘helping’ a friend purchase yarn.

The yarn I selected is Hedgehog fibres. We only needed 7 colours for the knee high ‘faded’ sock project, but I got 2 extra colours just in case. Did you know it’s really hard buying yarn for fades on a computer screen?!

S made a start on her socks right away whilst I was finishing up a NY hat. It was a lot of fun doing this knit-along with my sister. Neither of us have finished our socks yet… at least I don’t think S has. I kind of want to finish mine before her, so I haven’t asked for an update, so as to tip her off hahaha… (but I think she might read the blog…)

I knit on my socks whilst in New York, it’s the only project I took.

The first sock is now complete and I’m past the heel on my second sock. I’m hoping to finish these up in the next week so I can begin a special new project. More on that later.

…Meanwhile, my sister has been back to the La bien Aimee website and has purchased herself a Fluorite sock kit. The force is strong with this one.

This is for (future) me

So I blogged for a little bit last year, and then I stopped. I really can’t say why. Not because it’s a secret, I just really don’t know why.

I got the notification for my blog renewal, and I wondered whether it was time to give it up, was this the year to let it go?

Then, I went back to my last posts of last year, and it surprised me that I had even stuck it out for 5 months (considering I wrote just one post in 2017). Oh yeah, I wrote about stuff and my makes and I had nice photos of things for 5 months. And then nothing. I didn’t write about the epic hat making of winter 2018 which saw me knit about 20 hats for family and friends, including these little people…

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I didn’t write about anything past May. And I had a good year, with lots of makes and fun things to talk about.

I liked looking back at my posts…

I think I’ve finally found the purpose of my blog. It’s not for the traffic… trust me, it’s not that! I write for me.

So hi there future me, this is 2019. *

*friends and voyeurs of knitting are also very welcome.

 

Don’t look for holidays…

I’ve done something extraordinarily spontaneous this week. I’ve booked to go to Vogue Knitting Live San Francisco!

I only became aware of the event about a week ago. And even then, I hadn’t considered going because I thought it would be held outside of SF, like a long way out as Stitches West is.

Then on Thursday morning, that all changed when I discovered it was being held downtown in SF. By Thursday evening I had booked in. Crazy!

It’s my first time to a Vogue Knitting Live event. I’m thrilled with my itinerary of classes with Isabell Kraemer, Mary Jane Mucklestone, Romi Hill and Nathan Taylor of the Sockmatician podcast. I’ll also be attending lectures by Clara Parkes, Ambah O’Brien and Cecelia Campochiaro. There’s a Gala dinner with Kaffe Fassett on the Saturday evening. So many exciting things to look forward to.

I didn’t think I would be traveling for a knitting event for a little while, but having one in a city that I love, was pretty hard to say no to.

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My uncle passed away last week. It was unexpected despite his health concerns and his age. It’s been a difficult week.

I don’t have a lot of relatives, he was the only uncle I’ve ever met. He was an important figure in my childhood, creating many lasting memories, from pulling out my wonky teeth (with no pain whatsoever) to taking me to the rubbish tip with my dad. Where I got to watch them unloading the trailer from the safety of the back seat of his white ford falcon. I remember being surrounded by a wasteland of rubbish, the seagulls and that smell. Such an adventure.

He was very cool and fun. He was my only relative who danced at our wedding. Our wedding was unlike our usual family weddings, in that we had ‘Australian’ music, not a loud Slovenian band. We chose to do things our own way, turns out that’s how he liked to live too. He had a very happy life and I’ll never forget him.

So I’m going to keep knitting this (second) sleeve and think of him.

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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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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