knitting Feed

I admit defeat

That knitting pattern has finally defeated me.  I have unpulled my work so many times the wool is starting to look ratty.  So It has been unpulled for the last time and I have choosen another pattern.  I will have to do a big refresh (damping down and zap in the microwave) before I can show it again.  Here it is, ratty.

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I had to go back to the hospital again yesterday.  They wanted to do the operation again, right then.   I have had 4 operations in 3 weeks so I said no lets wait a month and see what happens.  (The new lens has swiveled out of position.)  I need a rest from all the stress and anxiety and I can see and it isn't bad enough that I can't drive.  So I am going to wait. 

Traveling up to the city of course means I have to get the ferry to and from the mainland and those little Welcome Swallows are always there.  The fly around the ferry on it's passage to and from the island and they live in the rafters of the jetty.  They lift my spirits every time I see them darting here and there or just sitting in the sun preening.

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There are so many things in this life to take pleasure from that one soon forgets all the stresses.


What to do when you can't see very well.

It is just over a week until I start the operations on my eyes and I can't wait for the time to pass.  My eyesight is deteriorating very quickly at this point and embroidery is becoming difficult.   I still have my last Children's Class sample and my June 'Peace' embroidery to finish and then I plan to put embroidery aside for a bit.  A bit being about 6 to 8 weeks.  That is the amount of time I am told I will need to heal.

I plan to use that time to knit.  I have one shawl on the go and it is problematic but I will eventually work it out.  So what else?  Well,  Kate Davies has a new pattern for a shawl that I think will fit the bill.

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image from Kate's Blog

It is mainly knitted in garter stitch which I can do by feel if necessary and I know the auld shell pattern pretty well also.  You can buy this pattern from her Ravelry Shop.

Then as my eyes get better I plan to knit some sheep, toy ones.  Julie at Little Cotton Rabbits has just released a couple of new patterns which are also available in her Ravelry Shop  along with her other patterns.

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Image from Little Cotton Rabbits

They are just adorable in their little dresses and sweaters.  I have knitted her animals before and I have to say I hate giving them away but the kids always get around me as they love them as well.

This is to make up for the disappointment I felt at missing out on buying the kit for the 2017 CAL from Scheepjes. There are only 2 shops in Australia that sell this wool and both were sold out.

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So my work is going to be a bit different for the next little bit.


Just something to wind left over thread on.

I remember that my Grandmother had this star shaped thing with a leg that she wound left over thread on.  As she told me, she had lived through three depressions and you didn't waste thread or fabric.  All was unpicked and put on that funny star.  I saw a picture of a similar one on Pinterest but it wasn't quite the same.

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Then I found out it's name. "Odradek".   It appeared on one of the knitting blogs I follow written by Kate Davies.  It has quite a story and that story has raised a lot off questions.  The first being where did it come from to be in my grandmother's possession?  It's source seems to be Eastern Europe and I know some of her relatives  came from Poland but that isn't even close.

The next was who is this wonderful artist I have never heard of before, Albert Anker?     I love his work.  Someone else to investigate.

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On the needles once again.

The weather has cooled down and I am able to knit again.  You have no idea how I miss knitting. I have always worn glasses and as I get older I find that sewing at night time is just no good for my eyes.  I end up with blurred vision and headaches.  Not so with knitting.  I can do that by feel.

I have now finished the shrug I started back at the beginning of the month.  It isn't for now rather it's a Spring shrug.  I think it would have been better if I had had another ball of silk.  I would have liked the sleeves to be longer.  This often happens when you buy kits from Asia.  Asian women are a lot smaller than Western women.  Still it will be a great piece right up to about Xmas.  It took a bit of getting used to the 'lumps' in the yarn but they make a great effect.

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I have a bit of a 'quest' on at the moment trying out Australian Artisan wool yarns.  I have now started a shawl Called Nurmilintu by Heidi Alander.  (The name comes from an old Finnish lullaby.)  The pattern is a free download on Ravelry Screen Shot 2017-04-26 at 7.55.28 pm
I am using a new yarn from the Australian Wool Store.   I bought the yarn from a show up at Toowoomba earlier this year and it is a hand dyed 50% merino and 50% silk and the colour is called 'faded roses'.   I can't see an equivalent on their website but there is one that is merino, silk and nylon blend for $32.  Mine cost me $40 for the hank.  There are some delicious colours available and I want them all.  But not yet.  (I still think that Bendigo Woollen Mills have the best priced wool for everyday knitting.)

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I had to make do with a couple of chairs to ball the wool because I couldn't find a spare pair of hands to help.

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I am finding it quite nice to knit but the spinning isn't consistent and that annoys me.  Still I will see what it looks like when I'm finished.

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  I also bought some yarn from Kaalund Yarns where I buy my silk thread .  They balled this one in the shop for me. That will be the project after this.  Then.......

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Weather

The end of Tropical cyclone Debbie is coming our way.  The radar images just look a mess.  Let it be said there is lots of rain headed in our direction.  It is Thursday here and I thought I would get Friday's post written in case the power goes.  We are pretty exposed out here and the winds are expected to be over the 100k mark by this afternoon.  Our new Telstra tower is as yet untested.  All the schools are closed, people sent home from work and already there are limbs falling from the trees. 

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So what do you do when this kind of thing happens?  Well I have all the emergency stores ready.  I might have to put the smaller flower pots under the house.  We cleared all the gutters but already there is a lot of water on the ground.  We have checked that all the family is safe.  So now I sew while I still have power.  Lots of reverse stitching on my Assisi Sampler.  I miss counted that border.  When the power goes off I knit. 

I bought a small kit at the Stitches and Craft from Prudence Mapstone.  It is from 'The Loom' in Bangkok and is all silk.  It takes a bit of adjustment to knit with the yarn but I have unpulled it once and seem to have got the hang of it now. 

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The Loom have a shop in Bangkok which is on my list of places to visit.  For now we just sit it out.

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More Loot

On the road again and this time the destination was Toowoomba.  Always a good hunting ground. There are lots of interesting shops, artists, gardens and Op shops.

The Op shops were first on the list after I had attended to business.  I was looking for a small bar tin for baking.  My husband thought the other was old so he threw it out.  It was one like my Mother had and not easily replaced.  I found a tin but not the one I wanted but I also found lots of things I hadn't even thought about. Like these lovely little Japanese dolls.  All $2 each.

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And another bunch of things that I can't show because they are going into the Christmas draw.  But let me say that I spent another $20 on 5 presents!

Then I saw there was a sale on at Hana's, which is a family department store.  I only bought 2 shirts but I have noted lots of things for my next visit.  Out to the patchwork shops where there were sales but everything I liked was full price.  Some nice Moda fabric.

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Just some top ups on Shadowplay.

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Some nice 'boy' fabric, small scissors and thread.

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Then onto the craft show.  It was very hot by this time and I think I parked my car illegally under some trees at the University but I wasn't booked thank goodness.  Here I caught up with lots of people I knew and found some bits and pieces I have been looking for.  New blade for the rotary cutter and needles which I keep dropping and can never find again.  (I'm sure there is an imp that collects them.)

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Some Japanese thread I want to trial.

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A stand for my rulers.

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I think I could do with a second one of these as I have lots of templates still in packets!

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That was all stuff I needed.  The rest is, well I wanted it.  A lovely hand turned bowl in Campher Laurel.  The smell is divine.

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Finally I am starting to find some Australian wool producers.  With all the wool the country produces it is a crime that we have to buy from over seas.  I only bought the one hank of wool to trial.  We will see how it goes.

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Good thing I remembered to put the trolley in the car boot because I would never have got it home otherwise!

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I think I had better stay home for a while to let my wallet recover.

 


Small Knitting

I am still waiting for my wool to arrive from England to start knitting the girls the mice they requested so while waiting I thought I would start on their clothes. 

Why did I buy the wool in England and not here?  Well I wanted the same wool that was used in the original mice and it was cheaper to buy it on-line and have it sent to the other side of the world.  Work that one out!

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These little things are such fun to knit, BUT, I couldn't buy buttons small enough.  I ended up having to buy a bulk lot of 300 buttons from China.  They were only about $5 and they came freight free but that is a lot of buttons.  I think I will have to find some other uses for them and as Xmas is on the way I have some ideas.

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I am not lost!

But I have been so busy.  This moving between houses is now at an end and we are back in our house.  One small problem.  They finished a month in advance of the finish date, which should have been mid June.  This is when all the furniture that I have bought will be delivered.  So the house is a bit empty at the moment.

But we are not there.  We are here babysitting the grand children whilst my daughter- in-law is interstate delivering a paper at a conference.  (I have worked out how to break into their internet.   Very obvious pass word!!)  Now that the children are all at school or day care I have managed to get to the computer.

I started by checking my favourite blogs and I found these by Julie Williams of Little Cotton Rabbits.

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I was lucky enough to be able to buy one of Julie's animals when I won a lottery draw a number of years ago.  I keep entering but have never won another.  But I just had to buy these patterns.

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Julie's knitting is just so beautiful.  I hope that I can replicate it now that I have bought all these patterns from her store. She has a book of jumpers for the animals which I had to get as well.  Don't you love her photos, so cute.

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I don't know when I will get to knit them.  It is still so hot here.  I will have to wait until they install the air-conditioning in my work room.  That is due to happen in the next few weeks but there is still all the unpacking to do.


Lollipop has a lot to answer for!!!

That donkey is evil.  She looks so innocent but she is evil.  She tries to steal the chicken food that I keep to feed Chookie.  She broke into the verandah area and ate a whole 20 ltre container so I moved the tub inside.  Then she proceeds to stand next to the air conditioning outlet because she likes the wind in her hair and maybe she can see where I am moving that chicken food to.  Lollipop can not be trusted.

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I  had to go out back to the other house to get something.  Whilst I was gone, which wasn't long, she worked out how to open the back door and when she got into the house she saw the fruit in the fruit bowl on the table.  All thought of the chicken food was forgotten.  She then proceeded to get up on the table eat all my fruit, spitting out the seeds from the stone fruit all over the floor.  I arrived just as she got her teeth into a parcel I had put on the table.  She got the plastic wrapper off and the contents onto the table

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and was about to get into the next plastic wrapping when I arrived on the scene.  She hardly turned a hair as I got her out of the house.  All I could say was "I have just washed this floor!!"  Then I spied the plastic wrappers.  This was knitting wool that arrived just that day from Scotland. 

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I am so glad she didn't get to chew the wool.

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image Kate Davies Designs

I am knitting this pattern, Braid Hills, by Kate Davies in the new wool, Buachaille that she is producing, for my daughter.  I think when it is finished it will not longer be called  Braid Hills  but The Wicked Donkey.


The start of the knitting season?

My husband is back in the land of the medical procedure as some other medical problems have surfaced and I am sitting in hospital waiting rooms, waiting.  After the first day I realised that these places are quite cool due to the air conditioning.  Great for knitting.  Back earlier this year I received a gift from friend Pammy that included a little knitting kit.  It was from Tasmania, where she had been traveling and included some wool, needles and pattern for a tea cosie. 

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As all my other wool is packed up and they requires me to dig through boxes to find them and this kit was right in front of me, I choose it.  it was made by a small company called "Art viva".

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It is the knitting needles that this company makes and they are just lovely to knit with.  I also see that they are stocked by a lot of shops around the world.

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This little kit included wool from the Nundle Woollen Mill.

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  This mill can be found off the main highway, after a bit of a drive up a country road, in the small country town of Nundle.in NSW.

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I have just about finished this tea cosie, I only have the teacup on top to finish.  I know two young girls who would like some mermaid tail rugs so I had better get myself organised and get started on those.  I think this means that Autumn is here, ( I keep reading words to that effect but I'm still feeling the heat ) and the knitting season has officially begun.