Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Is it a bird? Is it a plane?

No! It's Tank Girl!

All finished up and being worn in the sweltering 40 degree heat today (actually my thermometer says 40.3 but should we really quibble about 0.3 of a degree). As it is we are battened down with all the blinds closed and the fans on but it is going to get hotter and we are going to swelter. This is the second or third hot day in a row and whilst our house is pretty good from an insulation and temperature regulation perspective, it is starting to get to the point where it is nearly 30 degrees inside. Oh well, it is summer and you do have to accept these things.

Back to the tank (there is every possible that I got waylaid for a while there). As I am sure I have told you previous, it is knit in leftover, from stash Moda Vera Eleni in Soft Grey and Periwinkle Blue. I figured on fairly early that I didn't have enough of the grey so decided that a little below booby stripe of blue was the go. The blue and grey are quite tonal and as a result there are times were the blue is barely visible and then it "flashes" out like it has magically appeared. Rather neat really.

The pattern is Tank Girl from the book Stitch n Bitch: A Knitter's Handbook. It is an interesting texture and I quite like it. Is it my favourite thing I have ever knit? No, but it beats the hell out of some of my recent froggings. I modified the pattern to knit the main body in the round. A reasonable mod I thought at the start. What I didn't allow for was the positionings of the knits and purls for the shoulders and thus some fiddling was needed here. I also increased the width of the shoulders by 3 stitches to better hide a bra strap.

I have now moved onto more selfish, stashbusting knitting with Hope by Jennie Pakula from Yarn Magazine. I am using some Panda Heath in a lovely teal colour that I bought ludicrously cheaply from Sue's in Sebastopol. Locals should note that her range has improved quite a lot of late and the service is lovely and friendly.

I think I have decided that I am going to join this in the round and knit it as a jumper from here on in rather than a cardigan. I just think that I might wear a jumper more often than a cardigan. It should (hopefully) become a nice little henley style jumper with a button placard (is that what it's called).

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Well, Umm, Yes....

That is a very wonky Granny Square. I did crochet it myself with my own two hands! I get that it isn't really great and closer observations of it revealed a "shell" that has 4 double crochets rather than 3 but I am pretty happy with it as a learning piece.

Why Granny Squares you ask? A quite valid question. I rather fancy making one of those Granny Square lap rugs that were all the rage in the 70's. I am sure that pretty much every Grandma's house had one and I also had a doll's blanket that I recall. I was thinking of using the rainbow yarns I bought a while back from the boys' schools' craft market, but I am not sure how much of it I have and thus how far it will go. I might have to hit the next market and see if I can snaffle some more.....

Saturday, January 24, 2009


And not a scrap of knitting was done.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Selfish Knitting, Stashbusting and Stashbuilding.

I think I may have used up all of my selflessness at Christmas. Far as I can tell, everyone who was likely to appreciate a handmade gift got one. The exception would be Mum, but she got sock yarn instead and has been chugging away on her second set of 4 ply socks.

Since the fat man came, I have barely produced an item for another. I did invest 2 hours in production of a frap holder for Beth's Mum but that was such a triffling that I am not sure it even counts. So far I have finished my Leaf Tee Shirt and a Sassymetrical and have now embarked upon Tank Girl from Stitch n Bitch.

I have been committed to trying to get through some of the larger amounts of yarn that I have had sitting in stash. The Leaf Tee was made from Amaizing that I bought and age ago from an Ecoyarns sale. The Sassy was knit in Cotton Fleece that I also bought an age ago from an Ebay seller. The Tank Girl is also a stashbusting exercise, using up some more of the Moda Vera Eleni that I bought on impulse from Spotlight sometime shortly after the birth of Christ.

A better person than I would probably continue on this stashbusting campaign but I confess that I have dabbled in some stashbuilding instead. In my defence, I did off load some yarn that I was not likely to use anytime soon on Ravelry so I did earn some pennies for stash enhancement that way.

So, I present my lastest babies.

Some Happy Spider Glitz and 5 ply sock yarn from Yarn Collective. Reasonable prices and excellent service. The Glitz I purchased specifically to make some winter goodies for some of my knit-wearing girls. The sock yarn is for me (well you do need to take full advantage of the postage).

Sam and I also put in an order to American Yarns for some Sugar 'n Cream. I admit that I just wanted to see what the buzz was about. I have to say that the colours are lovely. Much nicer than I have seen in any Aussie cotton. I will be very interested to see how it knits up.

And my absolute favourite! Kyoto 5ply sock yarn from the lovely Mandie at Ewe Give me the Knits. I must apologise to Mandie in that the photo in no way does her dyeing justice. This yarn is luminescent and I just LOVE it! Add to my absolute adoration of this yarn the fact that it came overnight and I can not recommend the yarn or the service highly enough.

Monday, January 12, 2009


Pattern: Sassymetrical by Gay Schiff
Yarn: Brown Sheep Cotton Fleece, Limelight colourway, about 2 1/2 skeins
Mods: None really. I added a button and crochet loop more because I had no form of shawl pin than any design issue. It might also be a touch longer than the original. I really just knit to fit and the point at which I was happy. For the record, there are 6 decreases.
Comments: When I picked this yarn for this project I did worry that it might be a bit much in a larger garment. I have used it before for smaller items like bibs, hats and bags, but let's face it, it is a very bright shade. I thought back to the sage advice of Susanah and Trinny on an episode of "What not to wear" that people do not wear enough colour and went for it. I am glad I did.

In some ways the chosen shade limits the other garments that the cardi can be worn with, but in many other ways that isn't a terrible thing. I could have done it in black or a neutral and it would have matched everything in my wardrobe but this way I have a statement piece. Something that stands proud and yells "Hello, I'm over here" without adding "the one in the clown outfit with the floral mu-mu".

Sunday, January 11, 2009

More Recycling

After the other week's frogging of Ballet, I got to thinking about other things I had knit that I had never worn. This led me to the Shrug This that I knit post Christmas last year. As far as I can remember I have NEVER worn it past the photo shoot I did when I had finished it. In hindsight I think it would be much nicer if it were longer or I was far more petite. On me it made me look very busty and just didn't do it for me.

It is now history and I have recovered 75g of 100purewool merino in the June colourway.

I am thinking it will make a very nice winter cowl or perhaps a hat. It will at least make something that I am likely to wear.

I have also been busy with some more post-Christmas me knitting. It would seem that I am having a little selfish period after all those lace scarves for Christmas. My latest project is Sassymetrical by Gay Schiffknit in Limelight Cotton Fleece.

It is coming along nicely and I think I actually might wear this one.

Monday, January 5, 2009


Wired for Fibre! Wow is all I have to say. Excuse me whilst I spend some special time with my new friends.

P.S Katie has a sale on at the moment. What are you doing still reading this? Get going!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Just Amaizing

It is done! This is my newly completed, whilst drinking Black Hen Shiraz and watching Knocked Up, Leaf T-shirt by Melissa LaBarre. I have used Imperial Purple Amaizing, a corn fiber yarn that is machine washable and a heavy sport / light 8ply weight. It has a tape construction that was lovely to work with.

I was a little worried when I got to the end of the first ball. Seemingly there was a frayed section about every round or so. I decided it was either a very dodgy lot (which I really hoped wasn't the case) ir maybe it had something to do with the cardboard inner that the stuff is wound around. Hoping for the later, I rewound all of the other balls off of the cardboard and had no more trouble. I can't say whether it was the tube or the first ball was just crappy but better to be safe than sorry.

I am really happy with the end result, am wearing it now in fact! The Amazing has a nice feel to it. It is not incredibly soft but neither is it scratchy. I decided to finish all the edges with ribbing which I am glad of. I think it gives a far more polished look than the rolled edges in the original. I am sure there are others who would prefer the casualness of the roll. I also decreased 24 sts (every 4th row) just under the bust to give a more fitted look. Other than that, there were no mods.

This was a quick(ish), fun little knit that I think has turned out very well.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Sometimes you just have to admit it didn't work.

Longer term readers might remember this little number from last summer.

It is the Ballet Camisole from the now defunct Magknits, knit in perfectly good Jo Sharp Desert Garden Aran Cotton. I really didn't enjoy this knit even whilst I was doing it. There were endless rows of stockingette and the yarn wasn't behaving very well. When it was finished (ie after I conned Sam into doing the crochet edgings) it didn't fit well and was just wrong. The fabric didn't work and the thing grew about seventeen sizes in the wash.

Today I bit the bullet.....

There were sacrifices......

The top just couldn't be saved. Okay someone with patience might have saved it, but for me it was a goner.

I did save a touch over 300g of usable yarn. Now I am not sure what I will do with said yarn (and might I add if someone had use for it I could be persuaded to send it on to you) but I feel liberated now that is back in balls and I am free of the pink horror.

Sometimes my friends, you just have to admit that it didn't work.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Year to Me

And Happy New Year to you.