Knits for the men

I’ve been busy knitting knits for my men. They all have something new and warm and woolly now.

The first beanie was too big for hubby so eldest son happily claimed it…
So the next day I set about knitting another beanie which would hopefully fit hubby.  Again another Wooly Wormhead pattern but this time in Icelandic Lopi mmmm, snuggly warm.

It fits, huzzah!

Youngest son then decided he would quite like a scarf and as it was his birthday last weekend I couldn’t refuse.  I didn’t have any black aran weight yarn in my stash so I ordered 5 balls of Jo Sharp Silkroad Aran in coal from the Woolbaa that night and sent hubby to collect it the next day as he works near there.  I decided to use Stephanie Pearl McPhee’s one-row handspun scarf pattern because it’s reversible and I really like it.

He gets the “moon tan” from me, I tried several times to take photo’s in different areas and they all had that, I’m a stranger to daylight look.  Any tips Damian?  The scarf was completed 2 days after his birthday and he’s very happy with it because it’s not itchy.  The grass looks that vivid because it’s just rained.

I’m now occupied with secret gift knitting and will be for a few weeks so there will be no sneaky peeks until they are with the recipients.  However, on Friday I’m going with some of the Richmond Knitters to Bendigo wool and sheep fayre so I hall have heaps to show and tell after that.  It will be my first time and I am giddy beyond belief.  There will be sheep and fibre and yarn and all manner of woolly stuff, I believe camelids too but… meh!  The men are a tad worried that I might come back with a sheep or three but as vivid as the grass looks after rain I think perhaps it is insufficient to sustain even one sheep.  Perhaps we could move before next year’s Bendigo though.


A hive of activity and new loves

My wheel arrived on Monday and I would have posted earlier but I was on my way to knit night with the Richmond knitters when I got the text and then I was at work on Tuesday and so yesterday was the first day I had to get to know Owen.  So called because that’s the name written on the underside of the wheel “Owen Poad”, maybe the guy that made my wheel, I don’t know, I would love to know though so if anyone can tell me I’d be grateful.  Two other friends that have Little Gems have Andy Poad and Jemima Poad, I’m sure we shall be having many a spin-in together which will be heaps of fun and the whole point of a Little Gem, you pop it in the bag and go and spin with friends.

It would be very true to say that Owen is my new love, he is so pretty and very eager to put twist into fibre.  It’s very exciting this new love affair as I’m learning how to spin with him, it’s quite a different feel to spindling but knowing that we have a lifetime of making beautiful yarn together makes me so happy.

I haven’t lost any love for my beautiful spindles though so don’t worry. Anyway, pardon my waffling on.  Pictures are required, so without further ado, here he is…

Isn’t he gorgeous?  I’m spinning the BFL/Tussah silk Wintry walk on Filey beach that I dyed first and it’s looking very pretty.

On the day that Owen arrived a parcel of fibre that I ordered from Spun Out also arrived, It’s New Zealand Polland which, is a blend of Polwarth and Gotland.  Polwarth is a fibre I have spun a taster of before and Gotland has been on my must spin list for a while now.  It is a primitive breed from the Island of Gotland and their fleeces are supposed to be a handspinner’s dream, as fine as Merino and as lustrous as Wensleydale, how could I resist?  I shall wait until Owen and I are much better acquainted before I spin it I think, as I want to do it justice.  Also, I need to start thinking about spinning with a purpose and not just randomly spinning things because I want to, so I shall have a ponder. Here is a picture of that lovely fibre…

On the knitting front, I turned the heel on the first sock, yay socks!  The BFL sock yarn is lovely, soft and shiny-pretty in my favourite colours, if you haven’t tried BFL sock yarn do it!  You must experience the soft, shiny, prettiness, though the silky sheen isn’t all that apparent in this poor photograph.

Although David’s toe up sock cookbook could well be my all time favourite sock pattern, particularly good for handspun socks, oooh, handspun socks, drooooool.  I have purchased two more toe-up sock books the first arrived today.

It’s true to say there isn’t a sock pattern in this book that I don’t want to knit so while I waited for the book to arrive I dyed some BFL sock yarn to knit socks with, I particularly wanted some solid colours for the intricate cable patterns because I think they look stunning in solid colours so here’s the outcome.

Not bad for a beginner I think.  I shall dye some more soon, I have another 6 undyed hanks but need to have a think about colours first.

Well that’s all my exciting news for now.  As life isn’t all about the fun stuff, I have to leave it there, essential housework needs doing unfortunately, then brownie baking at the boys’ insistence.

ttfn Melanie x

Seasons Greetings

I’m hoping everyone is having a great time over the festive season.  As yet I haven’t managed to finish my last WIP of the year and it’s looking like I won’t finish it till early January but never mind I have one sock done.  Other plans have however, been more successful.

I had a great idea for the festivities one Monday evening with the Richmond knitters, we should have a one skein/100g Secret Santa swap.  Everyone thought it was a great idea and the rules were quickly drafted out.  Everyone who wanted to participate was given a Christmas card and on it they wrote their name and some clues for their Secret Santa such as preferred yarn weight, colours and fibre content.  The cards were then placed in blank envelopes and when they were all collected in we picked one each.  The yarn had to be virgin (previously unknitted) be a minimum of 100g and cost was limited to around $20-$25.

I’m happy to report it was a roaring success and elicited many  squeals of delight as we unwrapped our presents.  Here’s my bounty…

It’s Touch Merino 2ply, I haven’t got a project in mind as yet, but yes it is that blue nomnomnom.

ttfn Melanie x

Happy coincidence

D’you know what’s weird?

When you purchase yarn for a project and then for whatever reason that project and yarn does not marry, I seem to recall that happening before hmmmmm.

So deja vue aside, I purchased this…

It didn’t come like that, I unwound the skein so you could see all the pretty colours, I’m nice like that sometimes.  What is it? Oh yes, pardon me, It’s Fyberspates cashmere sock yarn in colourway “so pretty” and a very apt name I think.

It was supposed to be for BFF socks for the Richmond Knitters sOCkTOBER KAL but since I ordered it I have purchased another skein of yarn that is even more perfect for that project.

So what will you be my pretty I asked yesterday as I tootled along to SnB.  Well the lovely and very wise Sonia had the answer.  “It looks lovely next to your face” she said as I snuzzled the skein. Oh oh, light bulb moment, Aestlight shawl!!!  I have this in my queue and had provisionally allocated my Rowan 4ply wool to it, but as I’m going to knit Damson in my silver lightning Knitch yarn with its lovely semi-solid sheen of silver grey, the Aestlight will look like a poor relation in comparison.  Am I rambling? I think I am.  The upshot is I cannot have two grey shawls, one stunning and one a tad lacklustre in comparison, plus don’t you think the colours say “red light in the morning…” i.e. Aestlight, I think they do.  So when the Yarn-Gods drop a coincidence in your lap like that, ignore it at your peril, for they will smite you down and you will be knitting one day and happily casting off a huge project completely oblivious to a dropped stitch in an awkward place and you will wash it to block it and the unseen dropped stitch will run all the way down and you will cry.

Erm, talking of crying, (and trying to regain my composure a little) Sonia, lovely wise knitter friend also suggested a solution to yesterdays mini meltdown re:kitchener + icord. She suggested that as I was weaving my end in I could perhaps fudge the blimp on my sleeve cuff.  I don’t know why I didn’t think of this, maybe I was overly fixated on making it look perfect and seamless because I thought I should be able to, after all that’s the point of kitchener stitch.  Anyway I’m over it and going to spend the day finishing the second sleeve and possibly even attaching sleeves to the body, if I don’t have too many distractions, y’know, like online yarn stores selling their pretty wares, cooking dinner, mum have you seen my shirt… that kind of thing.

ttfn x