A lovely pre-christmas present

I have been included in an etsy treasury! It’s always a nice, random surprise when this happens and it was nice to know that someone out there appreciates non-animal fibre yarn!

Speaking of christmas presents, i am almost there!!

Here are some of the completed presents (that i can show you because the recipients will not read this!!)

If you remember the story of the weaving!fail, this is the replacement present – it is just lovely and i think Alice will enjoy it a lot. Observant people will notice i used left over yarn from M+Gs wedding present last year!

Country Lanes Scarf - photo by nett

This is a wip photo, but i assure you there are now two of these susie’s reading mitts. except they are not for susie (my mum or aunt) but for marmie (my grandmother). For those who know the pattern i have also hemmed it 🙂 The yarn is Freedom Spirit.

Marmie's Reading Mitts

This isn’t a wip photo, just a crappy one, although the colour is truer than in the other photos i have. Also my unmade-up face is not in it, brightly illuminated by flash and red from being flustered! The hat is made from one of the many ribbed boy beanie patterns on rav and the recipient? My dad 🙂 He LOST the last one i made him *sigh*

Another beanie for daddy

These were the most fun to make of all the presents i’ve made so far this year. I’ve wanted to make flip top mittens for years – pretty much since i first found out about them. afterall, while i might feel the cold, I fully admit it doesn’t REALLY get mitten-y cold here in Australia. This is a gorgeous pattern from Ysolda, and the first from whimsical little knits 2 (which i own) that’s i’ve done. They’re for my cousin Kate who works as the wetlands manager at Banrock Station – these will be great for winter mornings!

Unflipped Flip Top Mitts

Ahhhh papa and his socks. he does love hand knitted socks so, but boy are his feet big!!! I normally wouldn’t consider knitting socks for him for christmas since i try to choose small time manageable projects in order to get something done for everything and socks for papa are TIME CONSUMING (and not even small!!) But! I planned ahead. I ordered DK weight sockwool from Blue Moon Fibre Arts, took the yarn and needles away with me to Tassie in October and voila, 5 days after casting on i had these – another set of enormo-socks!

Enormosocks the Third

And last but not least of the photographed presents, is the first one i completed having put together yarn and project ideas at the beginning of october. I aimed to make as many presents as possible from stash – and have succeeded with all the projects above except the socks. This one is a woven scarf from Patons jet and i can’t get a photo that does the colour justice sadly – but it’s pretty and it’s for my aunt

Sue's Jet scarf

There is also finished a set of manly mitts for a male friend, an almost finished sekrit project for someone who will read this and something for mum, who will also read this! Still to be cast on are a pair of mitts i promised someone and a woven scarf (i know that’s not really cast on, but you know what i mean) for a very special family member. I might not make anything for the little cousins this year, since Erica got her beautiful knitted cardi for her birthday and jade will get a crochet top for hers. I picked up a cute little something from Tassie for them both and can pick up a game or something for them to share.

This is erica’s cardi though – it’s a very special little present

A Peacock Cardigan for Erica - photo by nett

a long time, no write… but plenty of craft!

So, I have been very quiet, spending much of my time volunteering at the Melbourne Writers’ Festival and working at the fabulous Wool Baa. mmm. I love my job!

I found out a few weeks ago that my friends are having a baby! This will the first bubs in my circle of friends and I’m very excited. I made my first pair of baby booties! I used Saartje‘s very famous free booty pattern, which is quick and adorable and knitted in Debbie Bliss baby cashmerino in a beautful teal colour – very gender neutral. the buttons are little red buttons that i fished out of my big grab bag of buttons. They took me a saturday evening of Gilmore Girls and Tea

I’m also planning on knitting Zoo from Rowan. I’m going to do it in bamboo in chocolate and cream with a pale purple elephant. ELEPHANT!!! i wonder if it’s appropriate to ask that the recipients of a baby top return said baby top when the child has grown out of it…

I managed another ‘saturday evening’ project this weekend, crocheting for myself Gem from Kim Hargreaves ‘Heartfelt’. I’d ordered some kidsilk night from the fabulous folks at cucumperpatch and it arrived on Friday, so I bought the kid classic to match up with it and off i went! Here is the result and I wore it all day today!

It’s VERY warm. The beads on the brim are just little pale purple seed beads. My friend said the kidsilk night made it sparkle like it had been rained  on or it was dewy, which is just the right amount of sparkle XD.

I’ve now also done Calm from this collection, in Jo Sharp’s mohair, but I’m yet to take good photos of it.

I must say that while I LOVE kim, i find i need to add more in the sleeves. I did this with calm and even then it still pulls up a bit short, so I’m tempted to knit some little ruffly cuffs in kid silk haze to wear underneath to add length – would also be useful under my cherish.

Speaking of which it is now Spring! which means it should be just right to wear Cherish soon – the problem with it is it’s too warm to wear inside, but it’s still too cold outside in Melb to wear the bolero without a coat – and the big wool is just too thick to wear a coat over! so it needs to be cool enough to wear outside, but warm enough to not need another layer – hello spring! I do love it though and want to wear it more!!

my current WIP is a jo nathan design from her Merino Deluxe DK book, though I’m working on it in Zara. mmmm Zara. photos to come… I’m also working on a beautiful baby alpaca scarf which I have a feeling i will wear CONSTANTLY when it’s finished!

Yesterday was the Melbourne Etsy sellers meet. I had a fantastic time and met some fabulous people, some of whom are on Rav, which is great, and all of whom I have favourited (or will when i dig out the business cards!) and genuinedly favourited too, I really do love everyone’s stuff. Made me feel a little inadequate and unoriginal really. I’m also now struggling with the copy cat bug! everyone’s ideas are so great it’s hard not to want to experiment with them! does anyone else have this problem? the only thing I’ve borrowed (?) – expanded upon (?) is kalliopi who makes fabulous button jewellery. I was making up a package for a raveller who loves buttons and i made some stitchmarkers with buttons instead of beads. I liked them so much I made a few sets. So inspired by, but not really a copy…

I am really excited about the next one and I must say I picked up a lot of business tips and ideas too, which is great.

Speaking of etsy there are now some ‘manly’ things on there, something I’m working on. There’s a gorgeous black and tan scarf and a reversable rib beanie. I’m also trying to make a bit of a niche for myself with knitted flower accessories, like hair clips and brooches.

I’ve been getting a lot done, but I still feel like there are things I need to finish – primarily because i either have everything i need, or i’ve actually started them. Mainly this is sewn items – including the dress I’ve actually cut out and need to put together. I cut it out in May… lol.

Anyway I will leave you with two things. The first are some little felted birdies that need a purpose… ideas are welcome. The second is a link to the most hilariously awesome thing i have ever seen on etsy made by fellow melbournian jellibat.

the best soft toy ever made...

etsy news!

Things are starting to get going at my etsy site!

I’ve purchased a showcase spot today (7th) and already someone has spotted one of my items and included it in this gorgeous purple themed treasury. She’s also listed her treasury on her blog, so in return I’m linking back to her here!

Thanks Talli – insert Streetcar Named Desire quote here 😀

I also had my first completely random stranger sale on Friday night. Some lovely person in India has purchased one of my first listings – my beaded pinboard pins – and my latest creations – knitted flower hair clips!

I got Nicky Epstein’s Knitted Flowers a little while ago and I’ve been playing around with some left over yarn and her little patterns to create some of my favourite items yet. And they’re already becoming quite popular!

plum flower clips

magenta flowers

pink flower clips

I must say though I do find Ms Epstein’s instructions a little hard to follow at times, so i sort of have to use my geometric engineering brain to work out what i’m supposed to do. The picot flowers i’ve been doing look adorable, but I’m sewing them up to make them look like that, rather than following her sewing up instructions, which make NO sense to me (any help here is MOST welcome)

I’ve also knitted a gorgeous brooch which will be listed as soon as there’s enough light to take a decent photo.

I’ve enjoyed playing around with the flowers so much that i’ve ordered her crochet flowers book too, since my crochet skills are improving all the time!

Crafty Lady – chapter 3

Chapter 3 – Crafty Lady’s life!

1. My Heartfelt pattern book arrived! It’s just beautiful. The patterns are gorgeous and it’s come with its own errata! I’m planning on doing Calm first, followed by Emily and Cherish. This will be made easier by point 2…

2. I am now working at the Wool Baa in Albert Park, Melbourne’s premiere LYS with beautiful luxury yarns, such as Rowan, Jo Sharp, Debbie Bliss. mmmmm. I’m loving it! I’m only working a few shifts a week and so will need to find other work as well, but I really enjoy it. It should pick up more as the weather gets colder, but that’s a while off yet! (there’s also a part time position going at a book store which would be a wonderful complement). And the best part? Staff discount! And it’s *ahem* hefty! Also, it is strangely satisfying enabling others (even strangers) to feed their yarn addiction, thus reducing my own yearning to buy. Plus i get to pat the pretties 😀

3. My mother loved her knitted Odessa beanie, worked in Teal with silver beads for her to wear to the football. It was her birthday today and this was a little extra unexpected present. She rang to tell me how much she loves it and will send photos soon (or so she says)

4. I am crafting like a fiend and there are many new items up on my etsy store.

5. I’ve made some little packages for Australian Random Acts of Kindness on Ravelry and am looking forward to sending them out!

Crafty Lady – chapter 2

Welcome to Chapter 2 – THE COW!

I ordered this kit from sunsetfibers on etsy and it arrived on Thursday, along with some roving (yummy).

I started making it on Friday (procrastinating of course) and finished it on Saturday afternoon whilst drinking a cup of tea after the adventure of getting the spinning wheel (see chapter 1)

This is my first time needle felting and the seller provided excellent quality needles and great instructions for the cow, as well as general tips and tricks. I loved doing it. I only stabbed myself a few times (they are SHARP) and i could watch TV (didn’t look up a lot) and i found it really really calming and relaxing. There’s something lovely about violently stabbing roving and making it into shapes…

so anyway, I highly recommend the craft and I WILL be doing more of it (there’s a GORGEOUS little book I want) and here is my cow!

read on for chapter 3 – Crafty lady’s life!