Thursday, May 25, 2006

Cherry red bag

This red bag was knitted earlier this year when i did not have a blog. I suspected that it wouldn't be fair for the bag if it was not mentioned at all. It was inspired by a Rowan design, but since i didn't have enough money to purchase the book, i knitted the bag according to my own interpretation and imagination, it took me more than 2 weeks to knit and piece the parts together.

I always get lots of compliments when i bring it out. In fact, it has inspired 2 of my 'non active' knitting friends to pick up knitting all over again. It is slouchy and roomy, but recently it has been pilling really badly. Is that a way i could save it without having to stop using it completely ??

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

What I have been up to...

Look at my sock! It has been a slow painstaking process. I can finally understand the instructions on Betsy Lee McCarthy's Knit Socks book. I started off knitting socks with the japanese style of using kitchener stitch for turning the heel. But the method taught in the book makes the heel so much easier to knit and less messy to wear. ( NO more bumps under your Heel !) The heel becomes a flatter and smoother area. WoHOOO..

I guess i have caught the sock bug ! I went to the Camberwell Sunday market this weekend( Yes, i made it in the morning) and bought some fantastic and cheap wool-blend yarn that is perfect for socks. There were many more colours and blends that were too good to be true. It was big tempting eye candy for me and i just want them all... But i am not a greedy girl, but hey, which knitter can help herself/himself when it is only AUD$3 a ball and u can knit a pair with it. So i went home with 2 balls as for now, i will go back for more.

Saturday, May 20, 2006

more kool aid

Look what came in the mail yesterday ! Kool-aid from Donna of Random knits. Well, Thank you Donna, now i will have more fibre painting adventures. The weather is really getting chilly now. Look at the streets around my neighbourhood ! Red leaves! That gives me another reason to knit more.

For those of you who lives in Melbourne. There is wool/ yarn expo coming up on the 1st of June at Coburg town hall from 10 am -3pm.

I hope to see more sock yarn on sale, especially Koigu yarns. I don't seem to find them anywhere here.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

dyed yarns !

Yes ! I finally got my hands dirty with kool-aid. I felt like a fiber artist!
1. I used 2 methods of dyeing: microwave and stove top dyeing
2. Pink yarn was painted with Cherry kool-aid to create strips and white yarn was in for a full dye soak.
At first the yarn was allll tangled up. I spent a long time getting it undone.. poor me..

The yarns were laid out on plastic sheet and i mixed the kool-aid and started painting the pink one. (doesn't it looks like blood..eeeew) As for the white yarn, i had initial thoughts of spotting it with the cherry colour. But since it got messy, i dumped the whole thing into a jar and allowed it to boil with kool aid until the water turned colourless.

The pink yarn went into the microwave for 2 minutes and i hanged them out to dry.

LooK! a plate of Yarn. YUM

This is how it looks like all wind up. The colour isn't exactly that fantastic because i used 1 packet of kool aid for both skeins, but it was fun.

( a closer look) now i have a problem.. i don't know what to use it for. Maybe for knitting some cherry flavoured socks ?

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

American foodie...

Isn't this packaging really cool? Altoids gums!( this sweet little tin will be my gum box for future) Pardon my excitement, because this is nowhere to be found in aus supermarkets. My friend introduced this cool american foodstore at bentleigh and i went straight away.

Here is more goodies... unfortunately the hershey's kisses tasted a little weird. But who cares when you are deprived of it. I used to buy it all the time while i was in Singapore where all american foods are easily imported and available. BUt Australia is a strange strange place, she doesn't welcome 'foreign foodies invasion'. Of course,there is always some room for kool-aid. Ihave got 5 flavours and will try to dye some soon. Thank you to those of you out there who help me with this kool-aid problem.
As for my socks, i have cast on again, changing for lacy socks to Peaks 'n' Valleys. It looks very much pleasing to the eyes and the stitches are not really that complicated as it seems. I hope this pair will go well and no more frogging for me:)

Sunday, May 14, 2006

While i was knitting happily watching tv last night, i discovered an offending little hole in my sock. I paused and waited in horror as i did not remember dropping stitches or whatsoever. But i continue knitting, it grew and grew but the pattern seemed to be going the wrong way. Hence, i pulled out the needles and ripped out out. Frogged It !! hiaz.. what a waste of my time.

Feeling disheartened about it, i took out a skirt i bought 4 years ago back in Singapore for going to Australia. It is a woollen quilted skirt that is perfect for the chilly weather here. But guess what, i have never wear it before until now. Perhaps it was too long and totally unflattering for my long and willowy frame. Hence, today, i started 'Project Skirts'. I have another 3 more skirts to go. Mission : to alter the skirt such that it fits me at the waist and sits at a comfortable length ( which is knee area) Hopeful, i will more things to wear after this... hee hee

I had to manually hand stitched as my '$40 toy sewing machine' wasn't responding the right way.

Now, i leave you with a knitting needles case i made last year for my teaching project. It wasn't difficult to sew, but making the pockets to fit the needles were a little too challenging.

Friday, May 12, 2006

10 things about me

1. I have been knitting ever since in early 2004. I have completed various small projects such as scarves, hand mitts, cushion covers, ipod cozies, coin pouches, socks.....

2. I only love to knit with natural fibers ( Call me a fiber snob!) Absolutely hate acrylic, but my first scarf was a black ribbed acrylic 'thing' which met its destiny by finally becoming Mr H's golf bag.

3. Completely head over heels with knitting socks now; i am trying to get every possible sock yarn into my stash.

4. Always miss the local Camberwell sunday market because i sleep in. Hence, i am always frustrated on missing out on the occasional yarn stall which sells cheap cheap yarn. ( i have to make it to this sunday's)

5. Currently, i hope to be on a yarn budget.. restraining to purchases that are absolutely necessary.. But hey, yarn is necessary, by the way, i am inspired to knit my own cardigan with Rowan yarns... ambitious am i ?

6.There are 15 balls of mohair blend in my stash and i have no idea of what to do with them. Scarves are far too risky to create with them, it will be too itchy :P any suggestions willlll be greatly appreciated.

7. I want to sign up for 'secret pal' knitting program, but i do not know how to go about doing it.. I would love to pack and surprise a fellow with a knitting goodie bag too..

8. Right now, i have been looking for jobs everyday. I have just graduated from teaching college and uni . After 4 years of uni, i m enjoying my lazy days now. But this couldn't last long as i will soon be very broke and 'yarnless'.

9. I love grocery shopping and going to local Blockbuster every other day. And of course yarn shopping... I will go great lengths and breadths of going to LYS even if it takes to me change 3 or 4 public transports...

10. I would certainly hope i can get some kool aid and start dyeing yarns soon. Hopefully, i will sign up for spinning classes too.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

vintage knitting pictures


Here are some pictures i stumbled upon while surfing the net... They were promotional messages urging women to take up knitting for war time soldiers during the second world war.

Don't you think they look simply encouraging and inspiring? ! imagine if we have a huge responsibility of knitting for soldiers at war , would it still be a meditative and relaxing craft or would it be a traumatic experience as we struggle to perfect our stitches and ripping 'kinky' parts just to make sure it looks good and fits our soldiers ?
What do you think?

I saw 2 puppies at the local mall the other day. I simply love looking at them and fantasize the thought of bringing them home~ knitting cute little sweaters and ironically watching in horror as they rip my yarns and nesting themselves in my freshly knitted goodies..
But imagine, having sweet little pups like these resting by your feet in winter and welcoming you home at the door is simply heartwarming.

Well, the day will come.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Yesterday, i went to the Handspinners and Weavers guild and bought these wonderful yarns. They were so cheap that i had to refrain myself from browsing too much. All the yarns were spun on the spot by student spinners and were dyed in a myriad of colours... from fingering lace to bulky slubby weight.

The bright blue yarn is actually a rug yarn. I am gonna knit that up and place it at my doorstep. The current mat is already old and dirty and it belongs to the previous tenant !

As for the white one, i am going to get some kool-aid to dye it. but after scouring the shops here, i cannot find any kool-aid. Ohh my god, where am i gonna get it ? unless i go to the US or buy online...or maybe some kind soul from the US is willing to send me some ?

Anyway, i have started on my 2nd pair of socks using baby yarn. I hope it is able to withstand the 'hardworking lifestyle' of a sock. Yesterday, while i was on the tram home, i happened to sit across a lady knitting socks too. After sometime, i spoke to her and she told me that she got her self striping sock yarn from Germany. Germany ? It is a hidden knitter's haven. Every newsagent carries a few publications of knitting magazines. Moreover, almost every dry goods stores sell yarn..Quaint little yarns shops are all over the place in those villages.
Well, Germany is my next stash enhancement destination after Tokyo.

Sunday, May 07, 2006

On a cold day

The chill got worse today. The whole of melbourne was freezing even with bright sunshine touching my face. I took out the cosy caramel socks and finished it up.

The background isn't doing justice to the socks; it is also partly due to gloomy skies outside. H thinks that the socks aren't exactly comfortable as it keeps sagging down.

However, i have got these transparent elastic bands to weave it. Hopefully, it will hold the socks up. Arrggh the trauma of knitting my first pair of socks has been endless...

After all the hype of socks, i took out my red yarn and tried crocheting with the help of Stitch n bitch crochet. Sadly after 2 rows of crochet, I FELL ASLEEP. I am so disappointed with myself. Moreover, i had trouble handling the crochet hook.. Instead, after my impromptu nap, i decided to use the yarn for knitting a coin pouch for my mother for Mother's day; keeping my fingers cross that it will make it in time to mail to tropical Singapore.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

an awakening...

" Nowadays, your knitting seems to be more important than anything else!"

That's what Mr H said. I was shocked. I didn't mean to turn a blind eye to most things. I just wanted to finish the BLOODy SOck.

Well, i also didn't mean to hurt him. He is a really sweet guy. Actually I can't imagine him living with a partner who owns so much yarn. Anyway, i realised that i have gone too far. It is true that i am obssessed with knitting, i have to moderate my 'knitting behaviour' so that he wouldn't feel neglected.

As for now, Introducing Purple Waves..

Now that i am finishing off my socks, i went through my stash and discover more possible yarn for knitting socks. I am very inspired all over again.

Here is 100grams, i hope there is enough to knit a pair of lacy socks.

As for crochet... I need more timeeee...