Sunday 15 March 2020. #86

Hello friends! We’ve had a touch of winter this weekend. We had lovely weather last week and Friday was the most glorious Autumn day, but yesterday and today have been very cold and wet. The predicted top for today is 19 degrees Celcius (66F) with a cold wind so the apparent temperature will be a lot less than that!

My week started with Monday afternoon at the Brewery. There was a golf fundraiser for Motor Neurone disease and I joined in for the afternoon’s activities. I don’t play golf but Robert plays quite a lot. On Tuesday, some friends from Sydney joined us for lunch and it was very pleasant on the deck. I even managed an afternoon of knitting on the deck afterwards – it’s such a lovely and relaxing view. Wednesday was my Evie day and we visited the park in the morning and did some shopping in the afternoon. Now that she only has one sleep we get to do more things outside. Thursday was relaxing with some afternoon stitching on the deck, whereas Friday afternoon was spent laying on the lounge with a stomach bug from daycare that had bridged three generations. Lucky it was shortlived!

The renovations are moving along again after the rain delays from the previous week but yesterday’s rain has postponed the concrete slab pour that was scheduled. There is more rain predicted tomorrow but clearing for a couple of days after that. You can see where my studio will be, on those piers at the bottom.

Knitting

New Cast-on: I was thinking of making some gift mittens and went stash diving. I was really looking for some DK though couldn’t find anything exciting but came across some lovely fingering (4 ply) weight yarn. This yarn has been waiting for at least a couple of years. I only had the four balls so there’s not a lot I could do with it. It’s the Skeinz Sockmatician Moody Hues and is a blend of premium luxury natural fibres with Possum. Anyway, on Monday I cast on a Drifting Snow mitten with the brown yarn for me as a trial run. This is a free pattern by Jerry Burch. Now that I know that the pattern works, I’ll start the blue ones next which will be the gift. I also intend to make a few others as gifts in different yarns.

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My Ranunculus sweater II is coming along nicely. I finished the bottom ribbing with 52 grams of each of the fingering yarns left. I was very surprised at that. I’m pretty sure I’ll have plenty for the sleeves now. I have started the sleeves and, as I’m a real glutton for punishment, I am doing them two at a time with helical knitting. That means I have 4 balls hanging off each sleeve. It doesn’t make for portable knitting, that’s for sure! So far I’m coping with managing the 8 strands, not that I can change it now that I’m underway as I’d have to cut the yarn or maybe just bag up one side and work on the other side. I think it’ll be fine.

The Kettle Valley poncho has been the easy knitting for this week. I have almost finished the sleeves – I’ll try it on again to see how much more I need. I’ll be so glad to then get onto the round and round knitting in different colours – much more fun!

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A bit of knitting paraphernalia for this week. I have started the tassels for my Lunae shawl. This just looks like a pile of yarn offcuts but there are about 8 tassels. I may need to iron them as the yarn was a bit curly. They are only 4.5cm high, as the pattern prescribed. I also sewed in the ends of the Anna’s Summer cardigan and blocked it. Evie and I picked the buttons on Wednesday. She was very helpful, carrying them for me. I haven’t yet put them on as the cardigan is still drying.

Spinning

Finally! I finished the chain ply that has been on the wheel since January. That was as far as I got because my niddy noddy was still packed away in the storage unit. I now have my spinning box here so I’ll be able to wind off the yarn. I think this was a better ply – so far it looks good on the bobbin but I’ll have a better idea when I wind it off.

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I wasn’t able to do any other spinning until I got my spinning box out of storage as the only bobbin I had was the chain ply above. Now that I have the tools, I’ve picked my next spin. It was literally a lucky dip from the bottom of my WIPs and fibre box. It’s a tall packing box and it took 4 tries to get this. The first three only got me fibre that was part of a set of two. I could have just started on one of those but I would have liked to prepare the two packs together, or at least decide together how I would do them. Anyway, I haven’t spun rolags yet so I’m excited to do this. I have seen Mena (the Knitting Expat) pre-draught rolags so I now have one ready to go. It draughts out to quite a length! I think I’ll spin end to end on two separate bobbins (4 rolags on each) and then 2 ply them. I still haven’t used my new tensioned lazy kate so this will be the perfect time to use it! I have to start spinning the singles first though.

Sewing

I only managed a little bit of sewing time this week. I think it was Thursday that I put the flounce onto the sleeve and the sleeve onto the Kristy blouse. I decided to finish the hem on Friday but that wasn’t going to happen since I was sleeping on the lounge most of the day. And, for some reason, it didn’t happen yesterday either. It won’t take much to do now. I again forgot to buy the button the other day when I got Evie’s buttons.

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I have been hit with inspiration from a new (to me) YouTube sewing channel. TomKat Stitchery is running #thegreatmodulesewalong and on Thursday I ended up bingeing all her videos on this challenge. The challenge is due to finish on the 24th March but it’s such a great idea that I intend to jump onto the bandwagon anyway. The hashtag will remain afterwards; the end date is only for prizes and I know that rarely happens for me. The challenge is to create a module of clothes that coordinate. I have wanted to do something like this previously with other similar challenges, eg Seamwork’s Sewing Planner and their Design Your Wardrobe class, but I struggled to find a starting point. When I was at the storage space I got my dressmaking fabric stash, or what I think is the majority of it.

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For #thegreatmodulesewalong you make a topper (jacket), 3 tops and 2 bottoms that all coordinate. You can use a specific item from your wardrobe and/or something you’ve previously made and then add items to coordinate. The premise is that you dig into stash first then add the bits you need. I decided to go for a camel, navy and white/off white colour scheme and found several pieces I can use. I still need a solid navy piece so will find something for that. I have a navy top that I want to include in this module and I have to decide on what patterns to use. So far, I’ve decided on the Seamwork Audrey jacket in a beige linen and a dress (swapping out for a top). Using stash I can make a  from the inspiration pile I found (pic below) but I was hoping for a Pleiades dress which takes another metre of fabric. So many decisions! 

Paraphernalia

Today we’re off to Wollongong to celebrate Kim’s birthday. Erin will be there too which will be great as it’s been many weeks since we’ve caught up. It will be a lovely day as the people attending are really wonderful and we enjoy their company. Robert and Steven will be attending a football match this evening. After today, all matches will be held without spectators for some time due to Covid 19. Australia hasn’t yet gone into full lockdown but some starts tomorrow. Some events have already been cancelled. Let’s hope we see the end of this horrible virus as soon as possible.

I finished my Heavy on the Dead book this week and thoroughly enjoyed it. I just started a new one – A Noise Downstairs by Linwood Barclay. If this is like his previous book that I read, I know I will enjoy it. On Foxtel, I’m now caught up with Outlander season 5 and look forward to each week’s episodes. There are plenty of YouTube podcasts popping up each day to keep me amused though too many to watch them all! I’m a little behind on my audio podcasts though I’m working on those too.

It’s time now to get ready for our outing so, until next week, I hope you are staying healthy and have lots of opportunities for your creative pleasures!

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