RSS

Category Archives: Crochet

enabling or providential

BWM_rainbow_cotton.jpg

Sing me a rainbow! I hope you can read the colours, in case you want to order some, too 🙂

My mother was a great enabler. I well recall the day she came to me and mentioned, oh so casually, something along the lines of, “I’ve just been to the local second-hand shop and there’s a set of hardback Dickens novels there for $10.” She didn’t suggest I should buy them. But, as a uni literature student, it was pretty much a given that I would do so. And I did! I have them still, and they don’t look at all out of place with the variety of other books in my library shelves including a good selection of other Dickens titles.

How could I forget the time she encouraged me to buy a piano, accompanying duet stool and assorted sheet music, at auction? We had a piano at home, but I was about to head out into the world on a permanent basis and would need my own so, you know, it was not a silly suggestion and the instrument was in fair condition. We decided on my upper bidding limit, which was obviously dictated by my then financial resources. My limit turned out to be higher than that of my chief rival bidder, because the piano came home with me. Once tuned, it moved with me to various suburban locales and enabled me to put in a lot of hard work over many years before I sold it to a fellow student and bought a more serious instrument. Every now and then, I dust off some of the sheet music that formed part of that original auction item.

When it comes to yarn, however, I must say that Bendigo Woollen Mills (BWM) do it every time! I receive one of their new shade cards and oh, the colours! Or, oh, the softness. Often, it’s oh, the colour and the softness. I’ve been looking around for cotton to crochet little blankets for a couple of new cousins. I generally trawl my LYS in the hope of finding something appropriate because I like to shop locally. The dilemma then is that, if I do find anything, although I’m keeping my spending local and can start straightaway, I’m generally buying overseas product. BWM takes a little more time, but it’s local enough to be a better environmental option at least with regard to its travel-related carbon footprint.

Luckily, time is on my side for these blankets, as they’re not required until next year. I will use up some stash yarn, but wanted a splash of brightness and my stash is largely on the sombre side. I haven’t seen anything in the LYS that could hope to rival the colours in the latest shade card from BWM. The two new colours are particularly appealing. So, you know, I might have to bend the plastic and crochet a few extra blankets while I’m at it, just in case there are to be any other new cousins.

May all your enablers have such providentially helpful timing 😀

 

 

 

 

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

the CAL cowl again

CowlReverse.jpg

Slightly bumpier texture on what is technically the wrong side. It’s long enough that I can pull it over my nose on cold mornings!

I realised that I haven’t shared a photo of the reverse side of my completed CAL cowl. It’s not reversible in the sense of being the same on both sides, but certainly in the sense of being able to be worn either way. Therefore, I wear it both ways. Sometimes, I like the smoother texture against my skin.

As previously detailed, the yarn is Moda Vera Malibu, a pure wool 8 ply purchased at my LYS in April. I used a 5.75mm hook. For those using other measuring systems, it’s described on the hook as J/10. It wasn’t a complex project, and the resulting article has been a great addition to my wardrobe these last few weeks when winter has been biting hard. I know the sun is on the way back to us – and the mornings are noticeably lighter – but that memo hasn’t yet reached the planetary thermoregulation system.

May all your lovely cowls be fabulous for keeping you warm. If they’re reversible, that’s also fabulous 😀

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on August 22, 2019 in Crochet

 

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

that was the CAL cowl

CAL_cowl.jpg

Fit for purpose and very warm

Tracy was running a series of KAL/CAL events, with a range of themes. For the March event, I knitted the Bloom-ing beanie for Nic, and delivered it for her 50th birthday, as planned. I’m sure it’s been getting a great workout since then as she dashes about suburbia on her morning walks. We are past midwinter and the daylight hours are noticeably longer, but early-morning temperatures remain appallingly unfriendly.

I managed to crochet a cowl for the April event, with the intention of wearing it under my new, maroon jacket. That’s it in the photo. I used Moda Vera Malibu, a pure wool 8-ply yarn, with inbuilt colour changes and slightly irregular thickness. The colourway is 86718, which is mostly shades of blue and grey. I used a 5.75mm hook, and worked half-trebles (UK terminology) into the back loop only. The side outermost in the photo looks knitted and is delightfully smooth. The other side is also attractive enough to wear facing out. It is bumpier in appearance and rougher in texture, but not harsh against the skin.

For August, the theme is to finish a WIP. I have so many that you’d think I could gallop to the finish line. You’d be wrong. I find myself well occupied with other sorts of creative work: reinventing oneself requires new ways of looking at everything. Repackaging and presenting to best advantage is surely creativity at its finest.

I am also rewarding myself by catching up with a few old friends during the interlavorum. This is a new word I coined in the style of interregnum, to mean “the time between jobs”. Purists – that is, people who are Latin scholars – might argue that it ought to be interopum, but that doesn’t roll off the tongue nearly as easily and, you know, it’s my word. I can do what I like with it.

All the best to you with enjoying your interlavorum if you happen to be at such a stage 😀

 

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on August 12, 2019 in Crochet, Knitting

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

fully blooming

fullbloom.jpg

Nic’s Bloom-ing beanie, finished by its KAL deadline.

With some dedicated knit-on-the-bus efforts and only a couple of late nights, I managed to get the knitting done and the seams sewn. I would be lying if I were to suggest that the sewing is good. It’s not. I’ll have to do it again. I’ll also need to block the beanie. However, I met the KAL deadline.

Am I pleased with myself? Given how much ordure is being thrown around our section of the globe right now, I am inordinately pleased. Also, I am still slowly crocheting my table runner, which is the background fabric in the photo.

I hope you’ve managed to meet all your crafty deadlines 🙂

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on April 2, 2019 in Crochet, Knitting

 

Tags: , , , , , , ,

…little bit…

nics_beanie.jpg

New yarn and old needles for a new project

I have to admit, when I knitted along that first row of my tension square last Wednesday evening, I just couldn’t help myself. “Oh, I love knitting,” I exclaimed to anyone who might be listening (mostly dust and spiders, to be fair, because there was nobody else around at the time). And I have been happily knitting ever since.

I did a little bit on the bus, a little bit while watching TV, a little bit at lunchtime, a little bit after dinner, a little bit on the suburban train, a little bit in the car on the way to our Thursday dumplings and coffee date (and during that, of course; the Bs barely notice nowadays), and a little bit at the bus interchange as I sat and waited for a connecting bus and chatted with an elderly Italian woman who prefers crochet but complimented me for my dedication to the cause: “It’s good to see.”

I did a little bit in the car while Dr B drove us to an early-morning appointment and a little bit more while we waited there. I did a little bit at the coffee shop, a little bit while Dr B bought motorbike things from the local dealership where he and YoungB are habitues, and then I had to have a little bit of a pause because I didn’t have the pattern with me and I needed to check it.

At this time of year, the mornings are cool and dewy and the evenings chilly enough for a shawl. I’m sorry to see the end of summer, but at least when the weather is like this, nobody looks at you strangely when you whip out the needles and knit for the 10 minutes it takes your homeward train to reach the city, or if you do it while you reminisce over coffee and cake before heading back to the busyness of the day.

I haven’t suddenly stopped crocheting. In fact, I have a plain crochet project at which I intend to keep plugging away while watching TV. It uses a thick, light-coloured yarn and a large hook, so is easier on my eyes. However, there’s that series of KALs/CALs I mentioned and this month it’s beanies and, well, there’s a workmate who’s about to turn 50 and who likes to walk in the mornings – those increasingly chilly mornings – so I thought a handmade beanie would be just the shot. And there’s nothing like a deadline to maintain the momentum with ticking off rows, as it were.

Anyone who knows me would agree that my doing a tension square is a little unusual. It’s true that, if I am knitting a familiar pattern using yarn I know well, then I might give it a miss. In this instance, although I am using a familiar pattern, I’m working with a new-to-me yarn; hence the tension square. Also, I was interested to see how the colours looked once knitted.

Satisfied on both counts, I unpicked the tension square and cast on the first row of the  lady’s size for Pattern 23 – Knitted Family Cap – from my old Patons Winter Warmers, Book 483. And I am more than a little bit pleased to have now reached the body of the beanie.

p_20190309_112830_1_p.jpg

Very pleased indeed with this progress 😀

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on March 9, 2019 in Crochet, Knitting

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Tom’s tote

tote.jpg

String bag by any other name

I finally finished the market tote, and immediately gifted it as a birthday present.

What should I do next?!

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on February 23, 2019 in Crochet

 

Tags: , , , , , ,

degrees of difference

TV_cowl.jpg

My phone camera is dying, so apologies for the poor quality. You get the idea, however. Another tidy little scrapbuster.

There I was, sitting with Dr B and watching a TV program. I needed something to do with my hands. And I need to keep whittling away at that stash. So the other night, while YoungB zizzed on the mattress with the aircon at full bore, I crocheted up a beautifully soft, warm cowl. Yeah! Just what you do when it’s above 40C.

This is a mix of yarns, all with a high acrylic content. The lighter stripe is Lincraft Big Wool Solids, in what I think was described as denim. It’s a blue colourway, rather than green. The yarn at the bottom of the photo is Moda Vera Manor in colour 52, dye lot 1010109, and it’s definitely a green colourway. The starting blue-green colourway (at the top of the photo) is a mystery, but possibly Moda Vera Bouvardia leftovers from an earlier beanie. I used a 9mm crochet hook.

Best wishes for all your stashbusting, and may you never be afflicted with unidentifiable yarn 🙂

 

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on February 4, 2019 in Crochet

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,