Sunday, August 30, 2015

Spinning surprise

At 7.30 last Saturday morning, as I was ripping back my Rams and Yowes a thought came to me, and it said "spin, you must spin". I haven't sat down at my wheel in over a year, but I was possessed with the desire, the need even, to spin some yarn.
So I went through my unspun wool, and found these:


some yellow polworth I dyed in 2012 and some beautiful red and yellow Mosely Park which I dyed at the same time. I'm going to spin them both up into a heavy laceweight and then knit a two coloured shawl, maybe a stripe study or a different lines. Or, as I originally intended when dying the yarn, maybe a two coloured Romi Hill shawl. Either way I'll have plenty of time to decide, but right now I am really enjoying the process of spinning, basically for its own sake.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Yarnalong - the (first) one with the border

As mentioned last post I'm knitting the border of my Rams and Yowes Blanket. Since the border has more stitches than the body of the blanket, I imagine we will be here for a while!

I had a weird week in reading. I started House of Sleep, because Kate wanted to know if I agreed with her about the ended. Well, we will never know because I found the characters unbearable and gave up quite quickly. Then I read the next  Phryne Fisher novel  Murder at the Green Mill, because they are always reliable and enjoyable. Also rather brief. So after finishing that, I started None of the Above, which somebody recommended. It's young adult fiction and it's fine although it does read rather like a case study or a very earnest "how to manage a difficult situation" rather than a novel.

And I'm listening to The Witch in the Wood   the next book in the Once and Future King Series. I did take a break from the series to listen to Viktor Frankel's Man's Search for Meaning. I had a very different reaction from the rest of the reviewers, and mainly I found it interesting that he decides that suffering can ennoble us, and therefore does not express any anger at those that caused his suffering. 

So except for the knitting, that trundles on calmly through the pleasant but endless border, it's been a bit all over the place this week! Pop over to Ginny's blog to see what she, and the rest of the yarn-along, are up to this week.

Friday, August 21, 2015

Kate Davies wants me to do WHAT?

I knit the colour work tube of Rams and Yowes, and I enjoyed every stitch.

I reenforced and cut the steek:

Then I gently steam blocking it to help it relax. I spent a little while admiring the beautiful effect, and Kate Davies clever design:

And, then, as instructed I picked up squillions of stitches. Although not quite at many as the pattern says, but as many as seemed necessary:


But I am NOT knitting 76 rounds of garter stitch in the round. NO. That means purling thirty thousand stitches. Luckily Fleegle has a tutorial for how to do no-purl garter in the round, because I cannot say no enough to the instructions as written.




Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Yarn-along the one with more trains

This week I travelled for work quite a bit, which means I'm more than caught up from my Rams and Yowes mishap. I've just got the final set of black sheep and the edge bit to go, on the colourwork, and I should get that section of the blanket finished on tomorrow's work related train trip.

While I've been cruising around the countryside knitting, I've been listening to The Sword in the Stone by T.H. White. I sort of felt like I should, after reading T.H. White's The Goshawk and Helen McDonald's H is for Hawk, which talks about this book a lot. It's an odd book, not unpleasant, but a series of loosely related parables.

I'm reading The Decendents, which is decent read. I don't really have a lot to say about it. I guess some books are for passing the time with. Pleasant and interesting enough, but not epic or super trashy or angry making or anything much. I'd sum this book up as: If you see a copy of this at the library or a friends house, by all means borrow it. I wouldn't bother to buy it though.

And so wraps up a rather pleasant week. Pop over to Ginny's blog to see what she, and the rest of the yarn-along, are up to this week.


Monday, August 17, 2015

A large affection for Colour Affection

It took me ages to get the photos for my latest Colour Affection, which is strange, since I wear it all the time. I did sort of have in my head that I would like to recreate the photo from my first one, which was taken in my local park, but we just seem to be out all the time and it all got so hard, so this weekend Kate took some photos for me/
This one shows how I was actually wearing it, but I cannot explain why I was doing tricep dips: 

 Did I mention I wanted this Colour Affection big? I added repeats to each stage, and it has come out like a huge shawl / blanket.

I'm really pleased with how the colours look together. All in all, this was a satisfying knit, and I am wearing it all the time.

Friday, August 14, 2015

Oops

I've been happily knitting along on my Rams and Ewes Blankie. "The pattern is so intuitive"  I said "I can knit this anywhere, the airport, the train, the pub" I said. "The hardest part is choosing the right colours correctly" I said.
And on Friday night, after finishing the first of the second half rams, I smoothed out the blanket to admire it, and realised that the pattern is not as it is meant to be mirrored. I'd picked the wrong shade of black for the second half of the pattern, and knit with it for two days.


And then this morning, when I went to rip it out I realised that the middle rows were also done in the wrong colour, so they came out too. And this is how it looks now:

Ah well, I guess it's just a way of prolonging the joy of knitting with this yarn, right? Right???

Ducky drop (1)

So it's not enough to just knit the ducks, I also needed to drop them off, by themselves in public places. We took them with us on our recent holiday, and I managed to drop two of them off, one in a park at Paradise Point:

and one at the feet of a statue on the Surfers Paradise foreshore.

The idea is that people pick them up and register them on the map. None of mine have been registered yet but that doesn't mean they won't be. Also, only one in three or four make it to the map, and I've only left two.

I have these three darling duckies left to set free. It's so difficult though, releasing them into the world to find their own future.


Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Yarn-along -The one with the sunshine

I know I was only away for four days, but I stored up all the Queensland sunshine, and I'm carrying it with me, spreading warmth and light wherever I go. There is no actual sunshine in this post, but everything is making me pretty happy right now.

I'm still knitting on Rams and Yowes. I am half way through the colourwork and I am loving every stitch. Like most of what Kate Davies Designs, it's a very intuitive pattern. So much so that I left the actual pattern at home one day and could still knit the little sheep from memory.

I'm reading Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walter. I was looking for something a bit light and trashy to read on holidays, and this is not that light or trashy! It is not a difficult read though and very enjoyable. It's another book that jumps between different time periods, which seems to be a bit of a trend right now. I'm nearly finished it, and when I am done I am going to read something really trashy.

And I'm still listening to and enjoying the unlinkable Ivanhoe.

So that's me for another lovely week. make sure you pop over to Ginny's blog to see what everyone else is up to this week.

Monday, August 10, 2015

A short holiday in the sun

The title of this post says it al;l really. Leon and I just spent four days in the Gold Coast, getting some sunshine. It was lovely, actual lying in the sun in a bikini weather. We went kayaking and snorkelling and visited an amazing CrossFit - Crossfit Broadbeach, which doesn't even have walls, and has a view of the sea. And all the time the sun shone on us.
I had been a little bit worried about taking the Rams and Yokes blankie in case it was to complicated or a hassle, but it turned out to be perfect knitting. Fun, interesting, but not too challenging
the only pic I have is of me knitting in a brewery (I know, nothing changes).

So, I'd better go unpack, and start the washing and all those necessary tasks, but I feel solar charged and ready for anything right now!

Friday, August 7, 2015

Out with the old...

A few years ago (to be exact in 2012) Sonia designed and released a range of Richmond Knitters merchandise. I bought a Sigg water bottle and have carried it with me, everywhere, every since. It's sits on desk at work, and in my bag when I am out and on the tables when I am interviewing people, which is what i do for a living. Sometimes the tables are a tiny bit unstable, and I've recently noticed that the bottom of my bottle is not longer flat, so it wobbles. And then I really looked at it and realised how beaten up the bottle has become,  Time for a new bottle.

I knew I wanted another Sigg, and I wanted one with a picture of a giraffe on it. The giraffe is my CrossFit spirit animal, because a really long neck would make pull ups much easier! So I ordered a new bottle, and here it is:



in front of my giraffe knitting bag. I'm a little obsessed right now, and very pleased with this purchase.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Yarn-along, the one with some sheep

This week I have been travelling a bit for work, by train as usual. Out the window of the train I have seen sheep, alpaca and goats. It's really hard to get a photo from the window of a moving train, you'll have to trust me when I say that this is a field full of sheep:



I have also been knitting sheep, most specifically Kate Davies Rams and Yowes blanket. I am loving this so far. While the pattern looks complicated it is fairly intuitive, and you know how I love Kate Davies, colourwork and Shetland wool. Throw in the fact that it is natural sheep coloured, and I'm happy as can be.




I'm listening to Ivanhoe, by Sir Walter Scott. (and I can't link to it on 
Audible, because of stupid digital rights management) I am loving it. I tried to read it when I was too young, in a copy that had very small print. I found it difficult and I didn't get through it. Now I realise it is a rollicking tale, and the long descriptive passages make it ideal for audio.


I'm reading Zoe's Tale, the next in John Scalzi's Old Man's War series. It's the same story as the previous book in the series, but told from a different point of view. It's well written, but feels like i's the same story as the previous book. Because it is. I'm nearly finished, and that's really all I have to say about that.

What are you reading and knitting this week? Pop over the Ginny's blog to see what she and the rest of the yarnalong are up to.




Monday, August 3, 2015

#havethechat

The Little Yellow Duck project is an initiative that involves knitting little yellow ducks and leaving them about the place with tags on them. People can then register them on the website. There is a particular focus on doing this is Australia in August, as the first week of August is "Donate Life Week" to raise awareness of organ donation. I thought this was a great idea and knit one up.





Then I knit some more.



 Now, I need to set them free, but I am terrified that they will be ignored, or throw out or that nothing nice will happen to them. It's making me a little bit anxious, but I really don't need a flotilla of knitted rubber duckies! Also, Juniper is a bit obsessed with them, so I'd best get them out of the house.

I will get it together to leave them places, and I will share photos here. Until then, I encourage you to think about organ donation, and let your family know your wishes.