Saturday, December 20, 2008
Sock yarn club

I don't normally join yarn clubs. The control freak in me does not like not knowing what I will get. It's the element of surprise that really does my head in. So.. what is different about this sock club? I know, at least, that I will be getting all stripes. I also know what's coming - look at all those lovely colours.

I am just not sure I need any more sock yarn or that I need that many pairs of striped socks!

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Which lot of wool was mine?
Some people asked which of that massive pile of wool was mine since they could not see much aside from a huge mess of colours. I bought 2 skeins of each of these:

I haven't worked out what to do with them yet, but I thought I would use two matching skeins for a Clapotis. I love the elegant simplicity of the pattern but am afraid that the vast amount of stocking stitch would drive me insane.

What else have I been up to?

I bought 100g of some Pear Tree Merino from a friend on Ravelry and then discovered that it was really 50g of 12ply and 50g of 8ply. What can I do with two small skeins of yarn in the same colourway? Hats of course!

With the 8ply, I made a small baby/toddler hat.

With the remaining 8ply I knitted up the ribbing for an adult hat and then used the 12ply to knit the rest of the hat in a 6x1 rib. It has plenty of sideways stretch and is nice and soft, as you can imagine seeing as it is Pear Tree Merino.

I like the softness of the wool, though I must say it intrigued me to find that the twist and thickness of the wool was so uneven. After all it was a mill-spun wool, not handspun. Some of the 8ply felt more like 4ply and overall, it knitted more like a 6ply.

After all that, I realised that I'd probably never wear the hat as I have not been wearing hats for the past two winters. I put both up for sale in my store. I like the idea of selling the two together, as a cute (kitsch?) parent/child set.

Thank you, HL, for the lovely Christmas pressie that arrived this week

It is a skein of Fiesta Yarns' La Boheme, in the "Australia" colourway. I am interested to see how it will knit up.

Lots more photos to share and works in progress, but that's a post for another day when I don't have a toddler tugging at my pants and trying to push the screen of the laptop down. "Close close close close.." I am hearing in my left ear...

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Friday, December 12, 2008
BT4 received

Thank you, Emily!

The package arrived today and it was chock full of goodies for me and Alex (and Chris thinks some of it is for him too).

Starting with goodies for me:

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A gorgeous needle roll, a pair of needles with giraffe tops and some lovely stitch markers. In case you can't quite make it out, the stitch markers have on them little charms in the shape or a pair of scissors, a spinning wheel, a ball of wool and a piece of measuring tape. How apt!

I am saving the giraffe needles for Alex. He already pretends to knit with my needles now when he can get his little hands on them. It will not be long before he is ready to learn, I think. He taps his forefingers together and tells me, "Mummy knit knit" Some times he drapes a piece of scrap yarn over his finger and says "wooo knit knit".


Next, a jar of gingerbreadmen. This is a big hit with Alex. He had three today.. well, most of three anyway. I think I will have to get the recipe for them. there are far worse things he can be eating and the sugar and colouring did not affect him in the least. There was so little of the colouring, I guess it wouldn't have mattered anyway.


Emily also included an apron for Alex. Alex does not know it yet but he is getting a play kitchen for Christmas. Emily included some miniature wooden cooking utensils for him as well. He will be the best dressed toddler chef this Christmas, but then one could say I am biased.


I tried to get a picture of everything but did not quite succeed. Emily also sent some napkin rings that she painted herself, a box of chocolates (which Chris thinks is his part of the present) and a book for Alex . All the presents for Alex are being wrapped up to go under the tree. He has not seen them yet.

Oh and I must mention the pretty ornament that came with teh package. A glittery dragonfly. Did you make it, Em?


Wednesday, December 10, 2008
Packed, posted, received

My Backtack4 pal is Emily from Embelish. After many emails back and forth trying to work out what we both like and who we both are as people, I finally put together her package. The theme is Frankincense, Gold and Myrrh. As the BT4 blog says:

"The first item is something that sparkles [the Gold part]- cards, decorations, calenders.....see where your imagination will take you. [It doesn't need to be gold]

The second item is something which has some sort of sensory aspect to it [the Frankincense part] - either smell or taste. Baked goods? Shortbread? Chocolate, soaps, the mind can run free here, but be mindful of customs regulations in different countries. Sealed food stuffs are generally ok, but check with your partner before sending anything.

The third item is a small gift for your partner for Christmas [the Myrrh part] Perhaps a small item for the tree, or mantlepiece. Quiz your partner to see what their theming is for this Christmas, and tie in your gift! or make them something they might like to use through the year - a calender, a purse, a scarf.

So.. what did I send her?

Lets start with the Frankincence part.. some home-baked shortbread with apricot jam, a jar of said home-made apricot jam and a jar of home made cherry jam. I also added a chocolate scented candle.. after all, who doesn't like chocolate?

Then the gold part.. That was quite difficult, really. I chickened out of this and didn't end up making it. Instead I bought her a desk calendar with photos of local sights. I then realised that it did not have to be difficult, so I made her some stocking shaped tree ornaments and filled each one with a gourmet lollipop from See's Candy. Mm.. See's lollipops... mmm I could just drool thinking of those giant lollipops.

Then finally the myrrh part. I wanted to make something for both Emily and her son Lucas, who happens to be the same age as Alex. In fact there is only about a week's difference between them! What a coincidence. Did I mention that Emily is my age too? yes, the BT4 organisers did well matching us. Strange coincidences. Anyway, What could I make?

I sent Emily a neckwarmer with a matching flower pin to hold it together. For her son, Lucas, I sent a pair of handmade shorts with a cars and buses trim. Emily said he loves all boyish things like vehicles, animals, dinosaurs (yes, I know they are animals too), etc. I thought the blue cars and buses fabric was quite appropriate seeing as Alex loves his shorts from the same fabric too. Since she sews, I thought I'd send her something for that too, and so I included a "vintage" Gutterman box with thread and a pin cushion.

Phew! Sounds like a lot, but it wasn't really. It was just a large assortment of small things. I really enjoyed this swap and I am looking forward to the next one. What a lot fo fun it was!


Saturday, December 06, 2008
Look what landed at my doorstep

I recently ran a Fibreworks co-op with some friends on Ravelry and it arrived today. I really only paid for it on Tuesday and she posted it on Wednesday and yesterday (Friday) it arrived! Obviously not all of it is for me. My order consisted of (only?) 8 skeins - the bag at the top of the pile.

If you're not familiar with Fibreworks, you're missing out. Yes, really! It's soft squishy wool. Most of that pile consisted of 18micron merino wool.


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