Thursday, February 25, 2010

my creative space

In my efforts to avoid unknitting, I've been slowly working on another slightly secret project.
True to form, it's unlikely to be finished by the time it needs to be, but it's a wonderful project to have in the background when I don't have the attention span to concentrate on getting yarn overs and knit 2 togethers in the right spot!

Visit the home of My Creative Space at Kootoyoo.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Another prize!

I seem to be having a run of rather good luck recently. Last week I won Knitter Sue's 500 posts giveaway!
The package included a range of different yarns that I've had lots of fun holding and imagining what they might become! I think there's at least 2 pairs of socks here (I haven't managed socks yet, so here's some more motivation!), some baby things, a monkey (that one was obvious), and there's 3 balls of dark crimson and purple mercerised cotton that seems to be screaming out to be made into a jug cover a la M*. Do you ever hold a ball of yarn and try to imagine what it might become? Or is that just me....?!?

There was also a couple of knitting pattern books for children's winter wear (I forgot to include them in the picture). And the coolest knitterly card ever. You can kind of see it, but my photography skills leave a little to be desired. Ahem.

With all of this winning, I'm going to have to have my own giveaway before too long! Fortunately my 100th post is bearing down fast, so that will be a fantastic excuse! I anticipate it will be on within the next week or so. Stay tuned!

Thank you so much Sue. Your generosity has definitely increased my growing stash. I bet my mother will be very jealous!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

my creative space

This week I've been playing around with knitting and provisional cast-ons. I'm learning a lot of very clever new things with my Knitting Olympics project!

A provisional cast-on is where you cast on your work with some waste yarn so you can remove it, pick up the stitches and knit from the cast on edge at some point later in the project.
I found the process of removing the waste yarn somewhat complicated, because I didn't trust my work to unravel if I just pulled it out. My alternative solution is possibly the most convoluted anyone could come up with, but it worked!
Using a crochet hook, I picked up the first working yarn stitches through the waste yarn, and slipped them onto my knitting needle. Once I'd picked up all the stitches (and counted them, just to make sure), I used my trusty crochet hook to remove the waste yarn.
Like I said earlier, this is possibly the most time consuming and convoluted way of doing this, but hey, success is success!
Once my waste yarn was removed, I was all set to begin the next step, which was making a double thickness band by knitting the two sides together. This process is similar to the three needle bind off, but without binding off. Obviously.
I'm rather pleased with my finished band, and I'm looking forward to making progress on the body of the hat. But for now, I'm embarking on some unknitting because I've lost a few stitches along the way. Count your stitches regularly, people. Especially when attempting to knit lace!!!

To play along or to visit other creative spaces this week, drop in on the inspirational Kirsty.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

A degree of success...

I'm making progress! I've gotten further than ever before which is rather exciting. This Knitting Olympics business appears to be working! Now I just need to work out how to detach my provisional cast-on. I'm a tad stumped on this one, and am considering using scissors (very carefully). Wish me luck, or if you have any idea of what I'm talking about, maybe you've got some helpful advice?
On another note, I eventually realised that the hot water bottle cover and wheat bag that Sally included in her giveaway prize used her very own fabric design! I'm obviously a bit slow at the moment, especially given that when she first showed us her design, I thought it was pretty fantastic. Now that I've seen it in person (and had my lightbulb moment - finally) I KNOW it's fantastic! Thanks again, Sally, and apologies for my delayed brain functioning!

Friday, February 12, 2010

A package and a crazy lady*

When I got home today I was greeted by a rather large package on the front step. I was lucky enough to win Sally's pamper pack giveaway, and inside was the (very generous) prize!
Inside was a body and bath set, a face masque, some rose petal soap, a hot water bottle cover, and my favourite: a wheat bag for my neck and shoulders. This will get LOTS of use!

Thank you so much, Sally! It's a really generous prize and I can't wait to start using it!

In other news, I have signed up for Yarn Harlot's Knitting Olympics. The deal is that you cast on your chosen project during the opening ceremony of the Winter Olympics and finish by the end of the closing ceremony. Yes, I'm aware that I possibly did this in a slightly less than sane moment, but it's supposed to be a challenge and wouldn't life be boring if we were sensible all the time?!? My chosen project is the Ishbel Beret by Ysolda, which I've cast on 4 times previously without success. So, fifth time lucky?

*That would be me.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

My creative space...

After numerous aborted attempts at button holes, the fabric from last week's creative space has ended up in pieces messing up my craft table.
After giving up in disgust, I've begun to contemplate alternative closure options for the backs of these darstedly cushion covers. My current thought is to crochet some loops out of a beige cotton, but I'm open to suggestions that don't involve button holes or zippers!!

However, sewing will not happen today. I don't think my sewing machine truly understands my displeasure yet, and seems to think that having tension issues is a really funny joke....

So instead, I plan to make tomato sauce. With these:
Pay a visit to Kootoyoo to find some slightly more productive creativity....!

Monday, February 8, 2010

Saturday, February 6, 2010


Tomorrow is the first anniversary of the Victorian Black Saturday bushfires. It's still incomprehensible to remember the uncontrollable destruction and loss of life and property that occurred.

Most of us had no idea what had happened until the next day. The day was the hottest on record, and I was at home with a sick 8-week-old, praying desperately for the cool change to come through. It eventually came about 6pm, but little did I know the devastating impact that change would bring. In hindsight I wouldn't have been praying quite so hard if I'd known!

Tomorrow at our church we will be praying for those who continue to be affected by the fires: Those who lost loved ones and homes, those who were involved in trying to fight the fires, those who were directly involved in trying to pick up the pieces in the aftermath. And also for those who weren't directly involved but who have still been significantly affected. It was incredibly confronting to realise the fragility of life and how quickly things can change and be gone.

It was amazing to see the wider community response to the crisis (though it would be even better if that sort of generosity was a part of everyday life). I was especially heartened to see the response around blogland when I discovered this place a few months later!

Let us not forget the lessons we learned from that day.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

My creative space... all about procrastination.

I agreed to make cushion covers for my sister for her birthday (which was 2 weeks ago). We've now found the fabric, but I just can't bring myself to get started!
It might be partly because the fabric doesn't really excite me, but it's probably more that I HAVE to do it, and they need to look OK. Hopefully by telling you about it I'll actually move on to cutting and stitching rather than just trying to avoid looking at it!

Over at Kirsty's you'll find lots of interesting creating....

Wednesday, February 3, 2010


Black Russian & Green Zebra

Homegrown tomatoes on toast. Perfect.