Sunday, 10 June 2012

Pacific Cowl and Madelinetosh yarn!

I've now seen and felt Madelinetosh Merino Light yarn for real! I love the complex colours in this hand dyed yarn and it's soft smooth texture. I wanted to use just one skein. I wanted to try out a stitch pattern I've seen in a Japanese knitting book. A Cowl was the perfect project.
This is the cowl just off the needles:

I'm showing a blocking photo. I don't know of another way to block a cowl, so it's blocked double. In the next photo it seems the cowl is narrower at one end, but it's just the distortion of the camera.
The second blocking photo shows more clearly how I placed the pins and used wires on the ends. It took more than the usual 12 hours to dry.

Now, the finished project!  I thoroughly enjoyed every stitch. Oh, I almost forgot to say....This stitch pattern, like many of the patterns in Japanese stitch books has lace work on every row. I'm not really keen on working lace in a purl row. This cowl is knit in the round, so every row is basically a knit row. There are some purl stitches to define the texture, but every row is worked from the front of the work. Yay! No purl rows!

Ceryle's Celtic Quilt

I want to showcase Ceryle's finished quilt top! The strips of bias fabrics are all hand stitched, and it's been amazing watching Ceryle work slowly (and sometimes not so slowly) and steadily on this work of art. In person it looks even more spectacular.
The pattern came in monthly instalments with the fabrics, from The Quilt Basket at Victor Harbor, South Australia. Because Ceryle likes to add her own touch, she designed her own centre square. Well done Ceryle!

Saturday, 9 June 2012

Secret Summer Garden Shawl (Rectangle)

Some time ago I designed a triangular shawl with this same pattern, and knit it with a very fine laceweight yarn. I've worn it and worn it. Then I made it with a fingering weight seasilk yarn, and again it's been worn and worn. I had a skein of alpaca laceweight yarn that appealed to me for a rectangular shawl. That's how this shawl came about. I'm writing the pattern which will be ready for testing very soon.
The modelling has been a family affair, with Daina, Betty and Lynn all looking fabulous! Oh, and Jess wanted to do some sniffing too.

Tuesday, 20 December 2011

Tanya Whelan, fabric designer and author

This wonderful designer has a new fabric line out, and a new book coming!

Sew What You Love: The Easiest, Prettiest Projects Ever

 can be ordered from Barnes and Noble  or from Amazon. I love Tanya's design including  accessories, clothing and gifts so this book will be a welcome addition to the library.
You can see her beautiful projects and fabrics on her blog
Hop on over and enjoy the eye candy!

Thursday, 3 November 2011

Ceryle's Celtic quilt

I was celebration time for Ceryle this Tuesday at patchwork class. During the years when she's been very busy having 2 children and working, she's managed to hand-sew this amazing quilt top. The design came in a kit from The Quilt Basket at Victor Harbor, but Ceryle redesigned the whole centre block. It's truely a masterpiece.  The design had to be marked on the blocks, the strips of bias fabrics all cut and hand sewn into suitable lengths, then tacked onto the black background fabric making sure the pattern twisted over and under sorrectly. Then Ceryl could begin hand-sewing both sides of each fabric strip!This Tuesday the quilt top was finished up to the borders. ...congratulations and it's fabulous:)
The first photo show the quilt top ready for borders (more patterns) and the bottom photo shows just the centre block that Ceryle designed. The quilt is perfectly straight and square. It's the photo that's distorted.
Now this quilt is in danger of being finished:)

Knitting another shawl in Royal Style!

I had a cone of cashmere from Colourmart enticing me to knit another shawl like the one the Duchess of Cambridge was spotted wearing on her shopping trip just after she was married. After studying the photo I decided the shawl has a chevron texture with a k1p1 ruffle. I swatched and yes! the pattern looks good. To replicate the shape exactly I would need to work just one large triangle either from the bottom point up or from the top down to the bottom point. Because the main texture required a lot of garter stitch, the shaping would be too complicated this way, so I chose to work top down from the centre back, with a spine dividing  two triangles. That would give enough shape at the top for the shawl to stay on the shoulder well and not be a nuisance.
So here's my shawl made with 2/36 NM cashmere held double to make roughly a fingering weight yarn. It would have been better knit single, but I didn't want to take a year to make it:) What's the project called? "Shopping in Royal Style", of course.
Thanks Teagan for being a wonderful model:)

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

The Koala returns

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We used to think it was funny when international visitors expected to see Koalas wandering the streets in the suburbs. well we have our own Koala who strolls down the road to his favourite tree right next to our house. We think it's a male as he snorts like a pig during the night. The first few nights we were all a bit perplexed as he sounded like a wild pig. There was evidence that he had climbed into our yarn and had a drink from the fish pond.

This time he's also making other noises too, much quieter. He has been seen wobbling along the local roads, but we have no idea where he comes from or where he goes. He arrived earlier this year and it will be interesting to see how long he stays.