Stash Dash Update

I’ve fallen down the rabbit hole of watching knitting podcasts on YouTube. That’s partially why you haven’t heard from me in a while. The other reason is… Stash Dash…

Stash Dash, the knitting marathon hosted each year by my favourite podcasters The KnitGirllls, is drawing to a close and I’m nowhere near my goal of knitting/spinning 10k of yarn. But that was to be expected!

I am currently at 2,679 metres or 2.7km, a far cry from the 10k I had dreamed of. Surprisingly, Laura from the Knitgirllls admitted in the most recent podcast, it was the first time she was not going to meet her goal (of 15k), and I won’t lie, that made me feel just that little bit better about myself. I’m not competitive, no!

The final project I have on the needles for Stash Dash is my Rockhopper Shawl by Anna Maltz. I hoping to knit like the wind to have it finished by the close of Stash Dash which is about 3pm Melbourne time on Monday. It should deliver about 1k to my total!

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Here’s a snapshot of the other projects I completed during Stash Dash, (not including the small amount of spinning I also counted).

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Oh well, there’s always next year.

The Best Bendigo Show Ever!

It has been a whirlwind few days and I’ve had the absolute best-est, fun-est time. I declare this years Bendigo Show the best ever! Of course… the show improves year upon year, but the nicest thing about Bendigo is getting together with friends who are passionate about the same things. And there’s not a lot of judgement… ok, maybe a little.

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The weekend began with a Fashion Show. It was a rather interesting one. This year they were celebrating May Gibbs’ anniversary, some hilarious clothing ensued.

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I attended the Women of Wool luncheon with 6 other Richmond Knitters. The speakers were very inspiring and had great heart-felt stories to tell. In its 7th year and only my second year of attendance, I think it’s an unmissable event of the show.

There was purchasing, the list was almost forgotten on the first day…

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I got back on track by the final day, to cross things off the shopping list (either the real or imagined list).

I bought something I never expected to…

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Beneath the wooden niddy noddy and darning mushroom (replacement because I can’t find my other one in my stash), is 2 metres of wool fabric!

Regular readers to the blog will know, I do not sew, I do not even own a sewing machine. In the yarn fumes of the Wool Craft shed, an spontaneous exchange between friends; may possibly mean that a pinafore dress will be sewn for me, in exchange I’ll be spinning a sweaters worth of yarn in trade. The details have not been ironed out, but certainly the excitement, the possibility and the amount of happiness (read:squealing) in the shed was an absolute highlight of the show. Even if it doesn’t happen (no pressure Chris), it was all worth it!

We sought out baby sheep, and we were not disappointed.

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The final night saw some of us having dinner at a fancy restaurant.

And this was the result of Deb telling a very funny story…

Tears of non-stop laughter, absolutely unforgettable.

Next year has a lot to live up to.

 

 

 

 

 

 

On my Bendigo shopping list

Nope it’s not a sheep! I wish…

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Now that I’ve made some room for incoming woolly purchases from the Sheep Show, my focus has turned to: What shall I buy?!

Because no one ‘needs’ to buy anymore yarn (especially me), I figure if at least I have some ideas about what I might need, rather than no idea at all, I perhaps will make some discerning choices.

So here’s what I’ll be stalking at the show:

Some glitz! I don’t have any glitz at all and I would like to try blending some into a batt on my new drum carder. Perhaps some other fancy fibres would be fun too.

Some 4 ply wool for Romi Hill’s ‘Happenstance’ Shawl.

A jumper’s worth of semi-solid wool for me. I’m not too fussed about the colour, I’ll know it when I see it. Perhaps I should have a pattern picked out before I go…

I would dearly love some attractive wooden sock blockers, but I don’t recall anyone stocking them from years past.

I don’t really need anything else. So the remainder of my shopping will be made up of things I simply could not leave behind, very dangerous I know. Wish me luck!

This was last years haul:

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Some of these things have been used already! Stop sniggering…

I wonder what I’ll come home with this year?

 

Off the Sheep

As many of you know, I’ve been ‘Cold-sheeping’ since November after my trip to Tokyo. The plan was to not buy any yarn until the Bendigo Show which is less than 2 weeks away, weeeeeeee!

But then, a few weeks ago, with Bendigo being so close, and after having a rather rough time/day/morning… I decided the only thing that could possibly make me feel better was to buy yarn.

It was cathartic!

I bought this:

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and this:

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and then Dairing was having a sale, and I bought this and this:

Once the seal was broken, I could only ask myself, why not?

Look out Bendigo…

There has been a tidy-eo of the stash in preparation, and There. Ain’t. Much. Room. For. New Stash. I’ve managed to clear one basket for ‘special’ yarn/fibre. All storage areas are now bursting at the seams, and don’t ask me where anything is. But there’s an empty basket for loot from Bendigo!

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What’s on your Bendigo Sheep Show shopping list?

Pipe dream

I’ve just signed up for Stash Dash 2016. For the uninitiated, Stash Dash is hosted by The Knit Girllls podcast. This is it’s 5th year running. It’s a sort of knit-along of crazy pants proportions. As far as I can tell, there are no prizes of the monetary kind. It’s a challenge for yourself, to achieve the impossible.

The gist of it is, you sign yourself up to knitting/spinning/crafting a certain amount of kilometres for approx. 3 months. The goal posts are, you have a choice of: 3k, 5, 7, 10 or 15k.

The rules are pretty flexible in terms of being allowed to have several WIPs near completion before the start date, as many as you like ::cheating::cough::cheating::. So long as you knit a stitch or row, then cast-off after the challenge has begun you get to count all the meterage of that 1k shawl or jumper or what have you. There are many more guidelines that you can read about on the forum.

Experienced players, plan for this all year in order to achieve the highest possible yarn count. Me? I decided to do it last week on a whim after the event began.

So, I did a little bit of planning at that point. How many km/s did I think I could possible knit in 3 months? I only have a handful of WIPs, many only just started. I wrote these down and the estimated meterage of these FO’s. I then went through my well curated queue and I wrote a few of those things down, all the while calculating the completed metres. And then the dreaming began. I kept adding more and more to my list of possible FOs. And then when I got to 10k, I thought I’ll just add a couple of extras incase I overestimate the amount of finished metres to the FO’s.

I must say, I found this planning part super enjoyable. Whilst I’m only going for the 10k, I’m honestly aware I have no chance of meeting that goal… but it’s going to be fun trying! For one thing I have 13 new WIPs to cast on weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!

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Me Made May Envy

I’m here to tell you, I once again have not participated in MMM. Every year since it’s inception I’ve been envious and this year is no different. But next year, definitely next year, I’m in. Can someone please remind me in April?

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At the end of April I went away with some crafty girls for a weekend in Hepburn Springs. I took several projects (as I always do) and I worked on all of them except 1 (the rooster tapestry pictured above).

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The weather was terribly gloomy that weekend, and we had one very large thunderstorm during Saturday night. It was ace! Rubbish weather makes for a great craft weekend, because no one feels guilty about staying inside.

I was multi-craftual (it is so a word), finally! I made a button from a kit I bought in Tokyo. The instructions were in Japanese, but mostly I could tell what to do by the charts and illustrations, the rest I used Google Translate for (which is amazing if you’ve never tried it).

I was inspired by everyone else’s projects. I should have brought my hexagon patchwork too, this one is Bek’s.

I finished my ‘Christmas Socks’ and began crocheting some coasters from another Tokyo souvenir from Avril yarn, this is a photo of the coasters since the weekend.

I feel like I’ve been a little multi-craftual now, and I enjoyed it. I still have much to do. I have many projects from my days as a stitcher to complete and some to start. I kept all the good stuff and I still love my choices, so it just goes to show stashing can work sometimes.

IMG_2476This little cherub was presented with her ‘Sweet Bunting’ cardigan yesterday. She is a very excitable bub, so it was hard to get a shot of her not moving and clapping! I’ll have to get some better photos when my photographer sees her next time.

Lastly my birthday present has (finally) arrived, stay tuned for the unboxing!

Birthday Month

April is always my favourite month of the year! Unfortunately this year for at least 2 weeks of it, I’ve had a terrible cold. I don’t do sick very well. I didn’t take any sick days, because I wasn’t sick enough, but I also didn’t get any better either.

Things are looking up today though, less snot, less coughing. Tomorrow could be a mucus free day!

Now whilst my birthday has come and gone, one very special birthday present is still on it’s way to me (my fault, I put my order in with DH late). I can’t wait to show you when it turns up!

I got many lovely gifts from family and friends (lucky me!), but I was particularly touched by this one:

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It’s a miniature ornamental spinning wheel that’s been in my family for as long as I can remember, before I even knew what a spinning wheel was. Perhaps one day I’ll have a full sized version of it in my stable of Spinning Wheels (there are 3 now!)

Other fun things this month: I won a yarn prize from The Knitgirllls podcast! It was quite surreal hearing my name being called out on the show. It was a lovely surprise, and the irony of winning yarn when I’m on a yarn diet is just hilarious, universe.

I’m afraid the fibre is beginning to become an issue too…

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Nuff said!

I’ve been niece knitting, I don’t have a proper FO photo yet. This is Sweet Bunting by Laura Chau:

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It’s a sweet little yoked cardigan, knit bottom-up (not my favourite). It has a string of bunting right around the yoke area. I’m really pleased with how it’s turned out.

And I’m planning another Tulips cardigan for Niece M:

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But everything has my attention.

  • I need to spin Damian’s winter set yarn, then knit actual winter set
  • Finish some languishing socks
  • Make some progress on a cardigan for me
  • Knit and finish the ‘Waiting for Winter’ Shawl… a Mother’s Day gift perhaps?

Send help!

March Madness

Once you fall out of the habit of blogging, it’s really hard to come back!

I didn’t finish my Stitch Block Cowl (Stitches West Anniversary Cowl) in March as planned. A couple of silly (but very easy to make) errors meant that progress was not made for days. It was cast off on April 3rd instead. I do love it, but this is what 6 weeks of knitting looks like…

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I’m going to make sure I wear it a lot this winter, for all the time it took I could have possibly knit a cardigan!

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It didn’t take a thousand metres either, in fact nearly half the yarn is still left. It is delicious yarn though so I won’t be de-stashing it anytime soon, I’m only sad I didn’t use more of it because of my Stash Reduction goals.

Whilst I love knitting for myself; I actually love knitting for my nephew and nieces even more. I hope to knit up a few things in the coming weeks, for these cuties in my life.

Here’s the Barley Hat by Tin Can Knits with Nephew W modelling it. My fear was confirmed when he tried it on. It was a little firm on the head, so I’ve knit him another in a larger size and this one will be for his sister.

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Upon knitting the second hat, I realised I decreased the top of the first hat too slowly, so it’s a bit of a pixie hat. The yarn I used (is Stash Yarn of course) Little Dipper Yarns in DK. I love this yarn and it’s superwash, perfect for kids knits and their parents.

 

 

 

February FO

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After a flurry of many finished objects in January, I fear February is going to be a much quieter affair. At the beginning of the month I cast on and finished knitting my second Kate Davies Kokkeluri mitten. It flew off the needles within a couple of days.

And then I cast on many other things…

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I have been dreaming about this project ever since Nicole from Stash & Burn made her Aislinn cardigan a number of years ago in the colour yellow. She no longer wears hers, but I still desperately want one. The yarn was a Christmas purchase from 14 months ago, so relatively ‘fresh’ stash. It is Cleckheaton Superfine Merino in the mustard colour way.

And then I joined a couple of Knit-alongs…

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The ‘it’ pattern of the moment is a shawl called Waiting for Rain by Sylvia Bo Bilvia (yes that’s really her name). It caught the imagination of a few of the Richmond Knitters, so some of us cast-on! I was really enjoying knitting this shawl, it’s clever and fun and heck it’s going to be a great shawl to wear. But then… the yarn failed me. This beautiful yarn did not have it’s dye fixed properly and was coming off on my hands REALLY, REALLY, BADLY. Both skeins have been caked up prior to starting, so there’s no turning back, just sulking and knitting and purple hands, which gives the appearance of burnt hands, boy have they been burned.

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The second knit-along I began, involves Deb and just myself; last weekend was our one year anniversary of attending Stitches West in California together. To celebrate, reminisce, feel sad about not being there this year… we decided to cast-on the same project in the same yarn together (we did shop together you know, and there were several double-ups).

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We’re both knitting the Stitch Block Cowl by Purl Soho. These are my colours inspired by being in the same state as Stephen West!

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Gosh we had fun!

My cold sheep February update:
• No yarn purchased (woo hoo)
• My Kokkeluri mitts used 175 metres (baby steps), so I’m 175 metres down!

March is looking more promising for stashing down with so many WIPs on the needles, it does sound great in theory.