Sunday 9 September 2018. #7

Hi again! This week has been quite uneventful; this is a good thing. Apart from work, of course, which continues to get in the way of my creative obsessions. I still manage to get stuff done around that, though! If you would like to be notified of my posts, please add your name and email to the Subscribe page on the link bar above. I’m still learning about web pages so I’m hoping this works.

Here is my week, in a nutshell.

Knitting

Joji Locatelli is one of my favourite knitting designers so, when she announced her annual Joji Fall KAL, I had to participate. I nearly didn’t but I thought a hat would be easy to manage and I’ve been wanting to knit one anyway. I’m already knitting her Like a Cloud but WIPs are not allowed, even though I haven’t done much of it. I would have done her new Elton cardigan pattern but that hasn’t been released yet and I also would have done her Hipster Shawl, had I remembered it! That’s what happens when you leave it till the last minute to join. Anyway, it’s probably good management that I only have the one hat commitment. I chose the BA Cool beanie and I’m knitting it up with some yarn that I used for natural dyeing which ended up being overdyed with red and some dark speckles. It’s a fingering weight so I’m using three strands at once as the pattern calls for 12 ply – this hat should knit itself in no time! I’ve already done about half, and that’s amongst all my other knitting. It should be finished by my next post.

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I have been swatching – for the Floozy Cardigan and for the Sharman Cocoon.  It’s killing me not to cast on both but I do need to get a move on my Comfort Fade Cardi and my Zweig. So instead of casting on both, I only cast on the Floozy. Hey, that is actually showing good restraint on my behalf! Those are only the two sweater cast-ons that I want to get into. I’ve still got Andrea Mowry’s Baubles waiting in the wings with caked up yarn and a list as long as my arm with other projects. I am absolutely loving this Floozy and have been limiting myself to a little section each day – except yesterday when I just had to start the third, dark red contrast. It was a great knit while I watched Pitch Perfect 3.

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Last night I frogged the sleeves on my Comfort Fade Cardi. I was very unhappy with it as my alternating yarns whilst fading was terrible and I really need to go up a needle size when magic looping two sleeves. So now it’s moving again and I’m so much happier with it. This will obviously be finished in our warmer weather so will have to wait until next year to be worn. I’m just about caught up to where I decided to frog. It’s DK weight so knits up reasonably quickly.

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For my “professional development” item, I started a Strange Brew cowl. I’m using this to learn continental knitting and also using 2 yarns at a time. The Strange Brew pattern allows you to create your own colourwork patterns for a jumper but also suggest a hat and cowl pattern as a swatching exercise. I’m using some beautiful Tranquility alpaca yarn by Australian Alpaca Barn (80% alpaca, 20% merino) in the Pesto and Ecru colourway, along with a ball of Alpaca Australia (100% alpaca) in the Rust Melange colourway. This yarn is so beautiful to knit and I am absolutely loving the colourwork, though I did have one row of three colours which was quite awkward. I’ll need to get one of those yarn guiding rings that separates each yarn. I’m about to do another 3-colour row and not looking forward to it. I used the continental knitting method for all the rib and went with the K3, P1 option to limit the purling. I’m not a fan of purling a la continental though the knitting is easy.

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Sewing

I was very impressed with my Finch Bucket tote last week that I decided to cut out the Little Finch Bucket this weekend. The pattern comes with the large Finch bucket. I bought some fabric in Singapore in April, specifically to make a bag of some sort as a memento. While I was cutting that out, I thought I’d cut out some more! I’m using some lovely fat quarters that I bought at the Berry Retreat a few weeks ago. There’s no hurry to get these done but it’s good to get all the cutting out done in one go. I still need to cut out a few things when I match some more fabrics, for some pockets, casings, etc. One thing I’d forgotten was that fat quarters cut in the U.S. are smaller than those cut here. They use yards which are smaller than our metres. Some of the lining fabrics I chose were a bit problematic but I think I have managed a work-around. Cutting out takes forever! The stitching part goes much faster. I was wondering what I’ll do with all of these bags. Maybe gifts for Christmas? But I want them all! I’m making these Finch buckets with these fabrics because I like them. I may have enough projects to use them all – I’ll dig out the ones that are hibernating and re-home them.

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Patchwork

I actually managed to do some stitching on my Round the Garden quilt this week. I decided to finish off these two quadrants and packed it up with some threads for my weekly stay in Canberra for work. That was all good and well until I settled down to stitch it and realised I’d left my travel sewing pouch at home! I managed to scrounge a needle I’d left somewhere on the quilt and had to use my teeth to cut the threads. Oh dear, where there’s a will there’s a way – I didn’t even have a thread cutter in my bag. At work the next day, I tried out the scissors in my drawer and found that they cut felt as good as my little scissors at home. At least I had them for the second night and managed to finish all the eyes. I’m moving onto the next quadrant this week. Apart from some little circles and more that I need to add, the two quadrants are complete.

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Workshops

Next Saturday, I will be attending the Sockmatician Double Knitting classes with Nathan Taylor at Skein Sisters in Sydney. I am so excited! I started the colourwork cowl shown in Knitting (above) in order to get practice at using more than one yarn at a time. I think the double knitting will be great but I’m also looking forward to spending the day with Nathan – he’s always so much fun on his podcasts so I think the class will be very entertaining! He also has an amazing method of double lace knitting. Have a look at the back and front of this scarf. He hasn’t released the pattern yet.

Stash Acquisitions

The only acquisition for this week is a 12″ Chaiogoo 4.5 mm needle for the Cerisara cardigan I’m knitting for my mother. It was hibernating briefly as I was totally confused with the sleeve part of the pattern, especially on magic loop. I bit the bullet and ended up ordering a 12” circular so that I could do the sleeves separately. I don’t normally like to do them individually but this one has a defined pattern of 8 rows so it will be easy to track the same number of rows on both. I’ve only gotten as far as putting the 12″ needle into the sleeve stitches.

Well, it seems that covers my week of crafting and news. I may dye a couple of mini skeins today as I won’t have the opportunity next weekend – I’ll be in Sydney having fun instead so only portable activities will be suitable. I have plenty to get on with so until next week, I hope you have lots of opportunities for your creative pleasures!

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