Tuesday, 29 June 2010

lots of yarn

I've had a fairly blah sort of a week after the one before.  Also had some legal problems, not caused by me but by someone else.  They are still being sorted.

I took refuge in the Jindabyne cowl down a couple of posts.  It's now finished but needs buttons.  I was going to walk down to the button shop in King Street and have a look this morning but felt so out of sorts that I've postponed it.  That end of King Street is not easy to reach from  here.  I really need to walk up to the Newtown Station and then down King.  If I try and shortcut cross-country, there are only two convoluted ways through from Enmore Rd to King.  However, the cowl is finished and just as well too.  It's been pretty chilly, especially at night even here.  Photos still to come of the cowl.

Ailsa, at Knitabulous had a sale and I jumped in early to take advantage of the 20% off.  DIL brought home a parcel last night with four hanks of totally beautiful yarn.

Here's the first.  This is the lovely 50/50 merino/silk.  Colour is Gelato, a very apt name in my opinion.

There was only one skein in this colour, so I bought it, although I have no plans or patterns in mind for it yet.  I love the mix of the silk and the merino.  It's lovely yarn to knit with, a fingering weight,  and the drape of the finished article is good too.  So it can sit in the stash for a while till I work out what will suit it best.

That's OK by me.  I haven't been adding to stash much lately at all, so I'm OK with the occasional addition to things.

This is Ultimate Sock Yarn and it would be great for socks. It's a combination of 60%wool, 20% bamboo and 20% silk.  There were three skeins of this so I bought two.  The colour is Chrome.  With 333 metres in each skein, there will be enough for a larger shawl.  Socks would be  nice too, but I have plenty of hand knit socks for the moment and will keep this.  It's not for grandchildren as it's handwash only and I don't saddle their mothers with handwash socks.  It feels very soft indeed and I think should knit up well.

This lovely colour is called Vintage Lady.  It's very soft and delicate, mauve-ish in some lights and dusky pink in others.  It reminds me very much of a dress I had when I was a child in a colour which my grandmother always called vieux rose or "old pink".  Now the pronunciation was way off, something like "voh rose."  Bad French as well as the masculine form "vieux" should  be feminine "vieille."  Enough reminiscences.

This is more 50/50 merino and silk yarn.  Something delicate and vintage perhaps.  Again I'm not sure of the pattern I'll use but this is definitely lace.

I had trouble getting the colour right on this one.  It's perhaps a shade more subtle than my photos show. Certainly there is more pink than shown.

The upright photo was taken in the shade under a grevillea and the yarn is place on the top of DIL's Wollemi pine which is growing well in a large pot.

The second photo is more in the open and I rested it against our sunshine warrior made  from plough parts.  This chain  goes around him like a beauty queen's sash.

I can see quite a theme here.  I now love lace and am getting better at reading charts where I once used only written instructions.  Now I look for charts.  I've done quite a few lacy things since Bells' summer of lace and while not a beginner anymore, I still would not class myself as experienced.

This last picture is of the skein which I drew out first from my large envelope.It's the final skein from the Japanese Yarn Club.  That's two I've done now and I've loved every colour and yarn sent.

This I think is the pièce de résistance of them all.  It's called Samurai Sword and is very definitely much more silver than my camera shows.  It's absolutely gorgeous and I love it.  It's a real finale to the other beautiful club selections by Ailsa.  Agin this is the two ply silken thread, 100%silk.  Again it's 1000 metres, so enough for a wide choice in patterns.

The lovely little container is covered in beautiful green fabric.  What you see here is a handmade glass button with Japanese characters on it.  It has a shank and is also beautiful.  Made in  Sydney by Teri at Etsy.  She's on Ravelry with the name "sthrnx" as well and at Madeit.

So thank you Ailsa for both these clubs.  I've really liked each lot of yarn and have extended my lace skills in knitting much of it.

Sunday, 20 June 2010

that was the week that was

The start of another week and it can only be better than the previous one.

I've done knitting, quite a bit of it.  However there are no photos.  It's the Jindabyne cowl, the start of which is shown in the post below.  It was bland knitting, the cowl is now well over half finished.  I sat and counted each section of the row, then repeated it on the next row and so on.

I was  somewhat of a dithery mess all week, weepy some of the time, nervous other times, unable to eat often with a stomach tied up in knots..  The knitting drowned out some of the nerves.

I had a court case on Friday and things seem settled.  However, it finished so late there was no time for papers to be drawn up and one paper in particular needs to be seen by the registrar.

I had loads of support and DIL here insisted on coming with me although she had assignments due.  I was very grateful for her support, that of my family and the many friends who encouraged me.  On Friday morning I had so many emails of support, as well as private messages from a forum I frequent that I was weepy again, but this time with a different cause.

Hopefully things will now move on smoothly.

So, to something more pleasant.  I attend a church which is held in an old building built around 1880.  It's pleasant in summer inside but last week I was distinctly chilly and others remarked on the cold.  High ceilings and large pen spaces make warming it a difficult task.  Today I dressed warmly and was thankful for wool and its warmth.  A longish woollen skirt which I've had a long time.  It was quite expensive but I've worn it many times and it's very warm.  Some handknit woollen socks inside my boots kept the feet warm,  I had a hip length semi-felted wool jacket which I bought last year.  It's light and comfortable to wear and very warm.  I finished off with my first brangian shawl worn not as a shawl but more like a scarf.  I was warm the whole time and actually quite hot after walking home in the sun.

The organist had an interesting jumper which seemed handknit.  It was black and white.  The ribbing was colour work to look like the keyboard of a piano.   On the front in intarsia was a large treble clef with a bass clef on the back.  Notes were scattered around and there were other musical symbols like  time and key signatures, repeats signalled, bars, rests and more.  I've never seen one quite like it before.  I didn't get an opportunity to speak to her later but will try on another Sunday.

Monday, 14 June 2010

jindabyne cowl

One quickly finished object first, with no photo.  I made an Odessa hat which is on Knitty for my Queensland friend in Mallacoota, Victoria.  When she thanked me for the fingerless gloves which she'd worn all day, she almost apologetically asked if I could also do a hat.  So I've made Odessa out of some Cleckheaton Country in a lovely charcoal grey.  I put everything else aside to do this quickly, although being out a lot of yesterday cut a large chunk of knitting time.  I'll post it tomorrow, it's a public holiday in NSW today.  I took some photos but they didn't turn out very well so I've trashed them.

One of the other projects set aside for the weekend was the Jindabyne cowl from Lush Yarns.  (Look under kits in sidebar menu). I've been enjoying this and it knits up quickly in Aran weight.  It's 50/50 wool and alpaca.  It's better in real life than the photo where I haven't put it very straight on the bed to photograph.   Eleven button go across the end for various degrees of warmth in fastening.

This one is for me.  I'm planning a trip to Canberra shortly to see some friends and this will be both warm and stylish.  I liked all the colours in this kit but there weren't many left available by the time I had decided to actually buy some.  I really like this colour which is called garnet.

Friday, 11 June 2010

first shawl fever, now startitis

OOOPS I hope it's not contagious.  I wouldn't want to pass it on.  After finishing my first Brangian, I wound Ailsa's last delivery from Indian summer yarn club and cast on a second Brangian.  I'm down into the lace now.  This will be smaller than the one shown in posts below because I'm using laceweight.  However, I'm making this for someone who will use it as a scarf, not a shawl.

To have something fairly brainless on hand, I also cast on an alpaca one stitch scarf from the Yarn Harlot's pattern.  This is for one of my sons who stands on a very chilly station in the morning, getting the breeze straight off the water right next to the station.  However, it's not a quick knit as he's tall, 6'5" and any scarf for him needs to be quite long so it doesn't look ridiculous.  So not a lot of this gets done at anyone time before I get quite bored with it.

I was knitting merrily along when I made the mistake of checking Lush Yarns.  A kit for the Jindabyne Cowl fell into my shopping cart in a beautiful deep garnet colour.  I've done about 20 cm of this.  It knits up quickly as it's Aran weight, in a mix of alpaca and wool.  Should be warm which is more than it is outside tonight!

The gloves I sent to Mallacoota were warmly received and very much liked.  My friend wore them most of one day.  She had a lot of chilly driving to do and she conducted what she said was her coldest funeral ever.  Remember she comes from Queensland and is not used to low temperatures.  The temperature at the cemetery was 3°.  She asked if I could possibly see my way clear to make her a hat, so I've done about 25% of an Odessa by Grumperina.

I might send that when it's done and possibly do a Coronet hat from Knitty.  I've made at least five of these before and possibly ten Odessa, including a couple with beads.

So I have concluded I have a bad case of startitis this week, along with chronic shawl fever which dies down and then surfaces again.

Friday, 4 June 2010

gift gloves

These gloves are on their way to Mallacoota in Victoria.  A friend of mine moved there in January after years in Queensland.  She has been feeling the cold very much with night temperatures around zero, sometimes below.  She has fallen in love with the place with its beautiful mountains, National Parks and beaches, but there are few shops, the closest town is 90 minutes drive away.  So I made these gloves for her.

They are made from Bendigo Mystique, the colour Britannia.  The photo is actually nothing like the colour  in reality.  It's much darker and more sombre a colour.  I used this because she does a lot of driving, she's a minister and it would take her about six or seven hours to  drive  around the perimeter of her parish.  The dark colour won't look as dirty as something light.  I also used this yarn as it's very warm , an 8 ply, of wool, mohair and alpaca.

The cuffs have been made quite long, about 14 cm to tuck under her sleeves without a gap between sleeve and edge of cuff.  It's almost impossible to see but there's a small lacy panel up the centre of the back of the glove and then a panel of moss stitch on either side.  I made a gusset at teh base of the thumb on each hand and then picked up just a few stitches for the thumb at the end and used the stitches from the expanded gusset.

They were quick to knit which was just as well because I ripped them out a couple of times.  I was making the pattern up on the fly, so to speak, and had to go down in stitch number twice.  They fit me snugly and I think they'll be fine for her.

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

brangian blocked

front gate brangian shawl Lush yarns 50/50 merino/silk
At last, a little bit of sunshine in Sydney. So with sheets, several pairs, on the line in the backyard, I grabbed my Brangian shawl which I blocked yesterday and went out the front. This is the small size and is also my unintended variation on the pattern.

I was sick with sinusitis and a massive headache when I did chart 3 . I misread the pattern and put yarnovers around the double decreases, just as the rest of the pattern had required.

I finished with a massive number of stitches, around 700 and wondered why no one on the KAL had commented on tis. I now have a ruffle, rather than points on the edge!. I prefer points, but this is fine and I certainly wasn't unpicking it, stitch by stitch.

The yarn is more 50/50, merino/silk, this time from Lush yarns. The colour is called Jamaica. it reminds me of boysenberries or portwine magnolia flowers.

With this finished, I've picked up the second wristwarmer I'm making to my own pattern for a friend in very chilly Mallacoota. She's moved down from Queensland and is feeling the cold. Hopefully I'll have that finished today or tomorrow and can post them to her. I made her a scarf last year from Colinette mohair when she announced the move. These are done in Bendigo mystique, a mix of wool, alpaca and mohair and are a quick knit on 4 mm needles.