some FOs at last!

I have been knitting quite a bit, but given the nature of projects, i don’t have a lot to show for it!

My lettuce pullover is coming along nicely, though sadly it’s my out-and-about project and i’ve actually been REALLY busy when i’m out, so not so much knitting! Over the next few days i’ll do the neck and start on the sleeves and then it should get going again.

At home i’ve been working on more complicated things… namely my first Aeolian. It was my first large scale laceweight shawl. I bough the yarn in Downer’s Grove, Illinois – handmaiden lace silk. SO divine. I had been told when i bought it that the meterage was a lie, and that what was stated as 600m was at LEAST 900. The full Aeolian calls for around 1200 so i played it safe.

Now as it turns out i could probably have done the full shawl or at the very least done 9 stitch nupps instead of 7, but my finished object is still large and stunning!

good thing i’d just put all my clean clothes away!

mirror mirror

“beads and nupps, why not?”

Once the shawl was finished i felt i needed a bit more of a quick’n’dirty knit, so i pulled out the skein of handdyed BFL i had earmarked for a present for Nett and Greg’s soon-to-be daughter ‘Muffin’

My friends have had a lot of boys of late, so i’ve been getting my full girliness out with this little bub. I really wanted a bit of lace, something floaty and fun, so i took a cute little lace vest pattern and modified it into a dress…

blocking…

It just needs some buttons – i bought some at Liberty (oh yes, how i love liberty) but sadly they are really just too big, so will be looking for some teeny tiny ones soon. There is no way this is going to get to Adelaide before Muffin arrives (unless she’s stupidly late) so Nett and Greg have seen it on Skype and Muffin will get to witness the opening of the package!

The pattern is Louise and i simple added some more rounds of the centre panel while working moss stitch instead of stocking stitch. then i increased by a third (ie, after every second stitch) went up 2 needle sizes to create a nice drape on the skirt and did a Dory (just kept knitting). I finished off with 6 rounds of moss.

I have a decent amount left… hat? booties? sockies? or save it for another little bub?

A few weeks ago before i started my job I headed down to Stonehenge and Bath. It was totally brilliant and beautiful and I’ve just realised i’ve TOTALLY FORGOTTEN TO BLOG IT! so will do that over on Before i’m too old in a tick. BUT I mention it here because despite only having 3 hours in the city of bath, I managed to find a yarn store and purchase a BEEEAUUUTIFUL souvenir skein of yarn…

Dragon’s Blood
(actually it’s called Arequipa, but who’s checking)

Isn’t it stunning? It’s Rooster Angel Lace, handdyed in Cheshire. Laceweigh Silk and Alpaca in a beautiful red (the kind i can wear happily)

It’s around 800m, so i see another shawl on the horizon soon.

In other news, my mum has sent me a few bits and bobs from my existing stash so i don’t go crazy over here 🙂

And I’ve been going to the Loop knitting group on a thurs night – luckily my schedule at work means i should be able to go most weeks if only for an hour and a bit. It’s a lovely shop with lovely people  (but not as lovely as my Richmond girls of course. I miss you)

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So many pretties in London… Oh my!

Just a quick little hello crafty-types

I had a lovely afternoon at Loop on Thursday where i met some lovely knitters. There was lovely conversation and biscuits and interesting projects, all surrounded by gorgeous yarn in Angel. Truly Heavenly. I resisted the NEW SHIPMENT OF WOLLMEISE. yep. SO MUCH WM! *sigh* I am eyeing off a few things though…

I am also looking forward to checking out Nest – probably next monday for their afternoon tea day – as it’s walking distance from my new abode!

Speaking of yarn-eyeballing though, i also want an opinion…
Now that i am living in the land where i can go and VIEW the colours of Jamieson’s Shetland (Spindthrift) at Loop I am thinking of finally knitting Little Birds, by Ysolda. I bought the pattern ages ago when she was donating a percentage of sales to Haiti, since i knew i wanted to tackle it one day. After all, I am yet to try steeking and I so long to be a truly fearless knitter.

So! the question is, what colours do I choose! do i stick with three colours? Do I do two alternating colours for the stripes? Or use 2 alternating for the birds, or use four contrasts in total? I’m thinking a very very soft grey or the actual off-white Ysolda used for the base colour, but there are SO MANY pretty colours! it’s so hard to choose!

So have a look and give me an opinion!

And i promise the next post will have photos! I am about 2 thirds of the way through my Aeolian Shawl (and by that i really mean probably just over half way since i’ve reached the edging which usually takes about 50% of the yarn, but it FEELS like more!) and my Lettuce is going well, though I’m going to finish the body, do the neck and then halve the yarn for the sleeves as i think i may be a bit short for full sleeves.

hey Richmond Girls… (and other Aussie Knitters)

yep, that's ALL WOLLMEISE!

that’s taken at Loop in Islington. I knew you’d all want to see it. And there’s a batch due this month. I’m pretty happy with my wollmeise stash, but i had to share. have NEVER SEEN SO MUCH in one place. (not even at Sonia’s)

Oh and I totally bought some of this in a colour called Flight.

stupidly i did not take a photo of my FIRST SKEIN OF LONDON YARN*

but i am knitting a hat and will take photos of that. it’s so totally lush.

discovered there is a yarn store on the road i have been walking most days (it’s sort of incognito so didn’t notice! worst knitter ever!) went to go there today but closed due to unforseen circumstances until thurs. 😦 REALLY could have used a yarny pick me up today.

*from this trip anyway…

Happy New Year!

It’s 2012. but you knew that, because you are on the interwebs, which means you are looking at some kind of electronic equipment that knows the date and time. But i digress

Happy New Year my lovely crafterly friends, from near and far – WordPress tells me that i have readers all over the world, but particularly from the UK (see you there soon!) and US! so Hi! I also had 47 SF cable car’s worth of people traipse across my site. which is lovely! i also just realised that may well be the first time i have ever written or perhaps even read the word traipse. I had absolutely no idea how to spell it, but i guessed and I think i’m right, so yay!

My year of being a Notorious sock knitter with the Rockin’ Sock club has come to a close. My last installment for the year has been my favourite – which is good. It’s a bit of a pity, because i found the experience to be a little underwhelming. I didn’t LOVE any of the colourways this year, though i had a lot of respect for the dyeing, especially with aubergenius and pinky swear (Jan) which were such a perfect match. The patterns were a bit hit and miss for me. The ones i liked i felt I had seen similar things before and the ones i felt were really original didn’t grab me at all. And while the community were lovely and welcoming, i wasn’t as involved as i could have been. But still, I have done it and i can cross it off my knitting bucket list!

Comfort and Joy - the November (and final) instalment of RSC 2011

I finally finished my wallflower socks`, and before the end of the year too! They took up the last 3 months of my ‘sock a month’ year, so i ended up 1 pair behind (i finished an extra pair in january, though i started them in december ’10). I have the remaining two ‘parcels’ of yarn+pattern there, and one i will definitely take with me to the land of the engers when i head to the UK in late Feb.

I should also add that these were only my second stranded sock and my first time using wollmeise!

FINALLY! Wallflower, but Stephanie van der Linden, in Wollmeise (Stella Polaris) and an undyed merino cashmere from Wired for Fibre

Yes, I have my UK Visa and i’m heading off and it is STUPID the amount of time i spend planning what yarn is coming with me, what will go happily to storage and what will go to mum so she can post it to me along with mail, summer clothes and other goodies. With all the other planning i should be doing, this is taking up a disproportionate amount of my brain time^. I am going to be taking a lot/getting a lot sent because with my VAST stash (256 yarns stashed on rav and that’s not all, though take into account there are double ups due to multiple colours being grouped together for the one project) it seems stupid that precious money that will absolutely be needed for expensive London rent and food and WARM CLOTHES should get spend on yarn to replace what i already have. SO! my plan is to arrange for yarn that has maximum time to weight ratio attached to find its way to me in London. this means a lot of my sock yarn and laceweight. I have been using my rav queue to whittle down pattern to  yarn matches and have about 94756924569276924753* shawls and socks ready to be knitted. This is good too because it means some of my handspun and souvenir yarn will finally see the light of day as a FO.

amongst all this crafting and planning christmas and a bunch of birthdays happened. I didn’t really do the crafting presents for everyone that i’ve done the last few years. a couple of reasons for this but the big one was ALL THE BABIES! i spent the time i would normally be making xmas presents doing things for small people instead. (there are more baby knits on the way too!)

I did however get some gift spinning done and had a few presents already made for people – mum got some of my handdyed yarn and helen got a hat` i made for her back in march.

Here are the spins, in order, for nett, katie and mel:

Super Angorino from Ixchel (50% angora, 50% superfine merino), spun 2 ply, 130m, 50g, around a fingering weight.

Merino and Carbonized bamboo from Ewe Give Me the Knits, n-plied, 135m, 100g, around a DK weight.

Wensleydale from Ixchel, 2ply, 85m and 100g around a DK weight.

The wensleydale i’m particlarly proud of – i think it’s one of my most even and beautiful spins yet!

^TBH I think a lot of my brain power has gone on this plan because in the looming face of moving to a whole new country, this is a manageable problem

*figure may be an exaggeration.

` ravelry link

OMG Meme-ing on a craft blog, whatever will they think of next

My darling nett’s new blog is super pretty, but the first thing i found was a meme.

which of course i have to do.

from Nett: “Whilst clicking about on Ravelry, I came across a cute Popular Yarns Meme, which was supposedly started onFeather & Fan, but the original link is now gone, the original was for the top 50 yarns, but its SO HARD to keep that kind of list up to date, so I’ve snipped it to the top 25… ;) ”

And I’ve made it 30

Out of the top 50 30 yarns on Ravelry (by number of projects):
Bold the ones you’ve used and would use again,
Cross out the ones you’ve used and would not use again,
and italicize the ones you’ve never tried, but would like to.
Add comments as desired, and tag 5 knitters/crocheters if desired…

  1. Cascade 220 Wool, 77175 projects
  2. Red Heart Ltd. Super Saver Solids, 69193 projects
  3. Malabrigo Yarn Merino Worsted, 68303 projects  – love mal – so soft and smooooshy
  4. Caron Simply Soft, 61741 projects
  5. Lily Sugar’n Cream Solid, 55009 projects
  6.  Lion Brand Vanna’s Choice Solids and Heathers, 47902 projects
  7. Lion Brand Wool-Ease Solid, 41830 projects
  8. Patons Classic Wool Merino, 41593 projects
  9. Noro Kureyon, 32396 projects
  10. Cascade 220 Heathers, 30573 projects
  11. Brown Sheep Lamb’s Pride Worsted, 28934 projects
  12. Lion Brand Cotton-Ease, 28644projects
  13. Knit Picks Wool of the Andes, 28175 projects
  14. Noro Silk Garden, 27639 projects
  15. Lion Brand Homespun, 26665 projects
  16. Patons Classic Wool, 25404 projects
  17. Pisgah Yarn & Dyeing Co., Inc Peaches & Creme Solids, 25279 projects
  18. Cascade 220 Superwash, 25239 projects
  19. Lily Sugar’n Cream Ombres & Prints, 25209 projects
  20. Lion Brand Wool-Ease Thick & Quick, 24366 projects
  21. Plymouth Encore Worsted, 23322 projects
  22. Pisgah Yarn & Dyeing Co., Inc Peaches & Creme Ombres, 20388 projects
  23. Malabrigo Sock, 19529 projects
  24. Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino, 19238 projects
  25. Knit Picks Pallette, 19151 projects
  26. Koigu PPPM, 18834 projects
  27. Blue Moon Fibre Arts Socks that Rock Lightweight, 18829 projects
  28. Brown Sheep Lambs Pride Bulky, 18459 projects
  29. Berocco Ultra Alpaca, 17936 projects
  30. Red Heart Super Savers Ombres/Multis, 16699 projects
It’s interesting, most of the yarns i haven’t tried i have absolutely no desire to touch whatsoever 🙂
I promised a photo though, so here’s a collage of projects using the yarns above...

Dyeing adventures!

The lovely Sharondoubleknit came around today to not only keep me company but actually GET me dyeing. At one point she asked “exactly how much undyed yarn and fibre do you have?”. Well, the answer now is significantly less than it was this morning!!

The good thing about having us both dye was it was a great opportunity to just play with all the colours i have. We were using Landscape dyes (acid dyes) and I had a lovely kit of ‘mountain’ colours from the elements range (lovely muted colours, only one i hate  – an icky greeny yellow called lichen), plus some left over kingfisher (teal!) from a previous project, three primaries and the dye i want to use on some bulky wool for Owls in Bloodwood.

While we were setting up and soaking yarn I organised 4 jars of small amounts of dye with about 5-10g of yarn in each as a test dye. 2 with different dilutions of the bloodwood, one with a teal, one with wombat, a delicious grey/brown and in the end i threw the 5th mini skein in the left over from the more highly diluted bloodwood and a bit of the wombat. Just for fun.

L-R: Kingfisher. Bloodwood 1/2 dilution, Bloodwood full dilution, Bloodwood and Wombat, Wombat

I popped the jars in a pan of water and just popped in on the stove for an hour or so on a lowish heat. It’s a great technique and i’d totally do it again, especially if i wanted to a fairisle pattern and only needed less than 50g of a few colours.

then I started to PLAY! I had a skein of sock yarn, a skein of 8 ply wool and 2 skeins of angora/wool (naturally sensation) 2 bags of undyed roving and some silk caps (still in my collection is the yarn for owls, a large skein of handspun leicester and some silk roving). I wasn’t necessarily going to do it all today, but i ended up doing more than i thought i would!

I played around with mixing the primaries, and Sharon made a rainbow, with the muted colours (even used the yucky lichen and came to really like the wombat!), made a totally ‘jen’ coloured skein of 8ply, mucked around with monochromatic dyeing with different solutions of teal on the angora blend and then used up the last of everything to make a few colours for the last batch of roving. FUN TIMES!

Other than the jar dyeing, I used my new, purpose-bought – rice cooker ($25!) with a steaming pot. It’s perfect. Fill’er up, pop’er on, and leave for 40 minutes! Brilliant!! Sharon dyed in a pot on the stove, which I will be doing for my Owls yarn with the bloodwood.

It was a very fun day with some really interesting results!

Sock yarn - Sun Orchid, Heath, Cloud Ears and Mist

Sock yarn - Sun Orchid, Heath, Cloud Ears and Mist

Dk yarn - Kingfisher, Tarragon, Sun Orchid, Clematis, Grevillia

Dk yarn - Kingfisher, Tarragon, Sun Orchid, Clematis, Grevillia

Angora/Wool Blend, dyed monochromatically in different solutions of all my blues, greens and touch of yellow mixed together

Fibre speckle dyed with the 'Mountain' range from Landscape Elements

Fibre speckle dyed with the 'Mountain' range from Landscape Elements

Silk Caps - Cloud Ears in the Centre, then Mist and Heath mixed, then Wombat

Silk Caps - Cloud Ears in the Centre, then Mist and Heath mixed, then Wombat

Fibre dyed with my pinks and purples mixed, my greens mixed and wombat to fill in the gaps.

Fibre dyed with my pinks and purples mixed, my greens mixed and wombat to fill in the gaps.

 

Show us your Map of Tassie!

Hi all, as promised, here is a quick run down of Katie’s and my trip to Tasmania! We really really enjoyed everything (except for getting seasick on the way over in 40knot winds and swells of over 10m) and we even managed to find some very lovely yarn to bring home!

We took the ferry over and no more shall be said about THAT trip, and arrived at 6.30am and very bleary eyed began the drive down to Hobart. We took a little detour through Oatlands to see the windmill – lured by the promise of an Australian Wool Outlet which was sadly closed and appeared to have knits straight out of the 80s in the windows.

Arriving in Devenport - deceptively calm!

The Oatlands Windmill

The Oatlands Windmill

We arrived in Hobart in time to go to Salamanca markets – we actually enjoyed WALKING we were so over this travelling business already! We started the stocking up of jams and preserves (soo much foodie goodness in Tas) Found Wursthaus, which is a must go to deli for ANYONE in hobart – delicious ready made and ready to cook foods – and picked up dinner for the next night. We had elderflower drinks and strawberries, and tasted Tassie chocolate and bought berry based fortified wines and generally had a lovely time whilst avoiding the vast amounts of fun fur. FOR SERIOUS.

We were staying in Seven Mile Beach which is about 30 minutes out of hobart to the east. LOVELY!  very quiet resort, nice and relaxing. just wonderful. It was quite cool which suited Katie just fine 🙂 (we actually had the heating on) We relaxed a lot, with knitting and Dr Who 🙂 Over the week, Katie worked through a large portion of her hap blanket and i managed to finish a pair of size 13 socks in 5 days. not even joking.

ENORMO SOCKS go faster in DK weight sock yarn!

ENORMO SOCKS go faster in DK weight sock yarn!

 

It wasn’t until Tuesday that we made our way to Yarn stores! 🙂  There’s a very good one in Moonah, just north of Hobart (on the way to the Cadbury factory, or on the way BACK in our case!!). They stock a lot of great quality yarns, readily available around the place, but we got a little Tassie-specific yarn – namely some locally grown and spun undyed English Leicester. We both got a LARGE skein (about 500m DK weight) and intend to dye them when we FINALLY get round to having a dyeing day here! We’re thinking we might make cushions from it 🙂

Lovely English Leicester

Then we popped back to Salamanca Place (AGAIN!) to go to Spindle Tree – a very well known little place and rightly so. They have a lot of handdyed and handspun yarn plus handknits and accessories. I chose some beautifully dyed mohair – will make a very simple garter stitch scarf on big needles from it – and a skein of sock yarn in colours that are very very familiar… (we also stopped back into Wursthaus for more food, because YUM!)

All named after Tasmanian Towns, this colourway is 'Oyster Cove'

Handdyed Sock Yarn - the colour of crushed blueberries!

We spent the Monday (sorry to go backwards here!) in Richmond, a historic town, in honour of our Richmond (Melbourne) knitting group. It’s a BEAUTIFUL town. We went through the maze and looked in all the little shops (one charging exorbitant priced for handdyed fibre and yarn) and took some photos of the bridge which is older than Adelaide and Perth – 1832!

Richmond Mazes!

Photo of the RIchmond Bridge, with Ducks

On the Wednesday we drove down through Hobart and along the Channel Highway on the west side of the bay. It was very beautiful and we stopped in at a winery that was having a (very small) market (more jam!!) and had a delicious lunch (more elderflower! it’s called Ashbolt, look for it!!) then took a detour to the handweavers gallery which was sadly closed, but there were fabulous views so not a total loss. We met a friend of my mothers for tea and pikelets (MORE jam!) and bought some delicious smoked salmon. nomnom.

Thursday we went horseriding! so much fun. Lovely relaxed trail ride through the brush and along the beach. Haven’t been in years and really enjoyed it. Pulled up pretty well afterwards too, which was good! Friday we played mini golf and had tea and scones 🙂 very civilized.

We took our time on the drive back up to Devenport on Saturday, with the biggest detour being the town of Ross, which we had heard lovely things about. It’s absolutely beautiful, one of the oldest towns in Tas, and even has a wool centre – not only does it have beautiful knits and handspun yarn, but also an info centre on the wool industry, including samples of different fleeces! quite a find for a pair of yarnies! we checked out the ‘antique’ market and had a lovely lunch in an old bakery. just a wonderful stop!

The very picturesque town of Ross

Then of course we made it onto the boat in time – declined dinner just in case – picked up some kwells just in case – but actually enjoyed a pleasant journey back with our regular expected level of NOT-seasickness.  huzzah! then we managed to drive home and fall into bed, exhausted, but refreshed, a lovely holiday over!

The Land of The Long White Cloud

Last week I took a quick jaunt to New Zealand with my father. When we got on the plane together in Melbourne (he’d flown over from Adelaide to connect at Melb airport) I realised it was the first time we’d been on a plane together in just over 10 years! odd!

We spent 2 nights in Bay of Plenty, just near Tauranga and Mata Mata (where Hobbiton is, but unfortunately it was too wet and i was too at the mercy of our hosts to do a tour) and 2 night staying with my cousin-once-removed and his wife in Nelson, at the top of the South Island. We were well away from Christchurch and felt no tremors or anything, but you could feel the emotional effects across the country. But regardless i had a lovely time, especially in Nelson, which is a gorgeous town (with gorgeous men!) and I would really love to go back again soon! I also get along very well with my cousins (their daughter lives here and has just had a baby boy) and would like to get to know/spend more time with that branch of the family tree.

But you all want to know about the yarns, right? well, unfortunately, being at the whim of two rather, shall we say, outdoorsy type women meant that a yarn store visit was not a top priority, and despite my research, and the find of a few places nearby (ie, within an hour’s drive), I was only offered a brief trip to the ‘best store, up at the mount’ on the recommendation of a knitterly friend of theirs. I, of course, took it. It was a tiny little shop and i can only say that this friend must be a bit of an ‘old school’ knitter, as this place really only stocked workhorse yarns, most of which i could get over here. But! I did find one yarn I hadn’t seen before, although i’m sure it’s available here now, and if not, soon. It’s a Naturally yarn, a brand i think is highly underrated, and it’s a sock yarn blend of wool, alpaca and possum! huzzah, a true NZ yarn as a souvenir. I got it in two rather pretty multicoloured colourways.

I also picked up two lonely skeins of Naturally Sensation, a lovely angora merino blend, in cream. It’s a discontinued yarn and i haven’t seen it around in a while, and i thought it would be lovely to hand dye and weave.

Nelson offered a little more excitement. For a start it was only drizzling, not pissing down with rain, which meant we could spend the morning at the market. Lots of lovely hand made items as well as local produce and things like possum and merino blend clothing. They had a bit of Touch yarns at one of the stalls, but i knew where i was heading later in the day, so i resisted. I looked at some of the possum blend clothes – something i was hoping to get for myself this trip – but none grabbed me. I did buy an adorable hand made hair clip. It’s got netting, beads, wire curls and a fabric flower. It’s made of win! On the way out I also checked out a clothing store which, if i remember correctly, is called Puss Puss (it’s off trafalgar street in a little mall if you’re ever in Nelson) that made AMAZING dresses, skirts and corsets. Seriously, it made me want to have a fiance, just so i could get a wedding dress made there!

Then, I went to the place i’d been saving up for – Fibre Spectrum. It’s a sort of handweavers and spinners group outlet (not sure it’s an actual guild) and whilst most of their stock is finished objects – clothes, accessories, homewares etc – they did have some handspun yarn available, including HUZZAH handspun merino and possum. I picked up 100g of black and 100g of a variegated berryish colour, as well as 50g of green for Katie. It’s all about 8ply

Sunday i seemed to spend entirely in airports or planes, but i did manage to snap up that possum merino garment i was wanting. I bought a lovely longline cardigan (with cables and pockets and a big collar) in a charcoaly colour and it is just so SOFT! I popped it on on Monday night and almost went into a fibre coma. If anyone takes a photo of me in it, i will share.

Meanwhile, here are some more generic holiday snaps of NZ

Bay of Plenty from the lookout

and again. so ridiculously green!

The pumphouse at the goldmine in Waihi

The breakwater in Nelson – the boatshed cafe on the left is where we had lunch

which included this little gem! very nomable

and one last photo for all my fibre (and wine) loving friends – Lawn Mowing, NZ style!

a VERY belated Bendi post

Today Mel, the lovely Yorkshirepud, came to visit me and we had an absolutely lovely crafty afternoon! First we stopped in at Onabee, the new craft store nearby (where i bought pear tree yarn, yum) and looked in at a fabulous little gift shop, then we headed back to mine for tea and teaching.

Mel has borrowed an Ashford Knitter’s Loom and i promised to teach her the basics! so with a cup of english breakfast to steel ourselves, i showed her how to warp up the loom and got her weaving! In return, she has donated some gorgeous Malabrigo to my stash… i have a feeling it might end up being a present for my cousin since it is the most wonderful green and i ❤ redheads in green! I also demonstrated some spinning… which lead to a broad investigation of the stash…

I showed Mel all my souvenir sock and lace yarn (i love a captive audience) and then i got onto the handspun, which of course led this very new spinner into the world of fibre stash. I pulled out all 5 large plastic pillow/quilt bags from under the bed and proceeded to pull out handdyed top after handdyed batt to show her. She patted and oohed and ahhed and coveted appropriately and even tried to tell me i don’t have one SERIOUS problem. She helped with my problem a little bit by taking away some silk/merino that i will never spin but will suit her wonderfully!

This, in turn led to a discussion on ‘what i bought at bendi’ which made me realise i had neglected you all for an ENTIRE month! i even have photos of my bendi purchases ready to go! *facepalm* I apologise dear readers and hope that my belated gushings will go some way to tiding things over…

This was my first  year at bendi and, to be honest, i didn’t buy as much as i thought i would. i don’t know why – maybe i found it all a little overwhelming, and certainly, since i have, as mentioned, an extensive stash, i was very much looking for things that really spoke to me, rather than just buying everything. That being said, i did spend well over $200 so i can’t have done too badly!

First the standard favourites – Mandie and Charly. I bought stuff from Mandie first – a whole lotta stuff. It was my first time meeting Mandie in the flesh, which was great, and it had been a while since i had purchased from her. She had some delicious handdyed sock yarn with one in just the MOST perfect colours for me…

I don’t think it was mandie’s intention to create a Port Adelaide sock yarn, but this WILL become a pair of football match day socks for me!

I also fell in love with this sock yarn with its rose petally goodness

Fibre-wise there was one blend that i just had to get – a polworth/silk. i’ve only spun polworth once, but i really really loved it – like BUTTER – so i had to snatch up some more (hard to find!). only one colour sang out to me, so i bought 2!

I also picked up some great pink sock blockers and some little charms – not sure what to do with them, but i love them!

I said a quick hello to Charly and had a look around, but knew i’d end up back in the woolcraft shed before heading home, so postponed purchasing from her to the end of the day (can’t NOT buy Ixchel stuff!)

I had a wander around – said hello to Ms Gusset and fondled her wares, met SeeAPenny at Try Dyeing where i bought 2 dyeing kits – one for me and one for Katie – Met Jane from Moseley Park and fondled HER wares (there was lots of fondling going on), bought some delicious carded alpaca (i have a thing for it, clearly -and sorry no photo), picked up some natural coloured brown wool for Katie, said hello to the lovely pear tree ladies, met Jo of the bird and the fish, Tara of Mayhem and Chaos and other ravelers, bought ENORMOUS alpaca socks for Papa, got a fantastic sheep incognito calendar, discovered fibre red where i ordered the most wonderful teal skirt, ate potato spiral chips on a stick, ate doughnuts and then headed back to Charly where i caved and bought some cashmerino bunny and some bfl-bunny *passout*

There is just the subtlest hint of pink in this and LOVE it – have some pure BFL in very similar colours i might ply it with

i have some angorino from charly in a very similar colourway that i thought i might ply this with for extra nomability.

Then i managed to gather my wits about me, purchase a cup of tea and start the long drive home (which seemed so much longer than the drive there!)

all in all it was an AMAZING day and i have to say, Bendigo is PRETTY. I was quite awestruck by the catherdral and the fountain/roundabout in the middle of town. next year i will pull over and take many more pictures, but this year it was ALL about the fibre and yarn!

So not a massive haul, but pretty respectable and it was absolutely wonderful to meet so many people i knew only via rav. Now to get on with the spinning, knitting, dyeing and weaving!

Keep your eyes peeled for a multiple FO post here later this week!!! *excited*

Stitches and Craftiness

Last Weekend was the Stitches and Craft show and on Sunday I went along with my brand new housemate of win. She is also a crafty type and indeed I met her through the knitting group on Monday nights in Richmond!

The show was a bit less crowded than the last time i went – it seemed there were fewer stalls and vendors, but i did REALLY like the crafting stations they had set up and i wish we’d had a bit more time to make some things and try out new crafts. I would very much have liked to try out the paper craft station as this is something that’s always fascinated me but i’m not silly enough to get into. (not that i think scrapbooking and paper craft is silly, it’s just that i already do a bajillion things – the same reason starting to quilt would point towards severe insanity)

I have a self-imposed yarn embargo on at the moment – No yarn purchases for the month of may. As you smart chooks will realise, last week was may. so what to do? well I made a deal with myself. I had one day off for Stitches and Craft, in return for a further week into June. So no yarn until June 8th. I don’t know why this is such a hard thing to do. It’s not like i don’t have about 4 years worth of projects ready to go in my home!

But I couldn’t resist Pear Tree yarn on sale. We had a lovely discussion about work and the store being a stockist and i let the ladies know i’m knitting Fay in the 4ply supersoft (which most certainly is!). Having access to the yarn through work, I did of course limit my purchases to the sale stock – their old merino range in a discontinued colour called Sky – a lovely soft blue which apparently matches my eyes. It’s a 12 ply and I’m thinking i might do Rosamund’s cardigan in it. I also picked up a skein of a mixed 4 ply which is grey, cream and softest pink – I’m planning to weave something with it but need to find a complimentary yarn.

The next place i could not walk past was One Fat Slug- a yarn dyer i had heard about on the grapevine with a totally unforgettable name. I instantly spotted a skein of delicious silk merino in watercolour pinks, blues and purples. Whilst it might do a pair of delicate socks, I was taken by her sample ishbel shawl done in that yarn and think i might just do the same!

My last yarn purchase was another Zauberball, now being sold here in Melbourne. I picked my first one up in Austria, but have seen a gorgeous striped pair of socks using two of these balls and wanted to do the same, so when i heard they would be available at the show (for $4 less than retail too!) I had to look. I picked up one in pinks and purples – i just have to make sure the blackish parts of the two balls don’t line up!

Otherwise the majority of my hard earned (lol) money was spent on a joint house project. Stealing the idea directly from penelope waits, I suggested to the HoW (housemate of win as she will now be known) that we should decorate one of our blank cream walls with awesome fabric in embroidery hoops. She just happened to HAVE some vintage wooden embroidery hoops, so we took the opportunity of the Stitches and Craft show to choose some fabrics. Between the lovely ladies at Spindle and Ink, Pepperberry and Co, Pippijoe and Earthgirl Fabrics, we came up with this.

We ❤ it lots and lots and lots!