Saturday, 28 February 2009

Lacy summer winds up

A Long Lacy Summer comes to an end today. I had hoped to have a couple of shawls done this summer but that was not to be.

I did manage to finish the Mandala.

I managed one scarf - Isobel.

And a pair of lacy socks, the heart socks.

I started the Maltese shawl with great enthusiasm but so far I have only managed 12 repeats. I discovered the heat and mohair are not compatible. Mohair sticks like glue to sweaty palms. This shawl will have to languish until the cooler weather starts (summer will end, right?).

Thank you!

A big thank you to passionknitone and Cybèle for nominating me for a Kreativ Blogger Award.

And of course, now I need to pass the award on.

The rules are

1. copy the Kreativ Blogger award to your blog

2. put a link to the person from whom you received the award

3. nominate 8 other blogs

4. and link to them

5. then leave a message on the blogs you nominated

This is not an easy choice. The blogs I follow are many and varied and all ooze with creativity. So here goes:

1. Valli

2. Jack

3. Baruch

4. Greyscale Territory

5. Mary

6. onemorerow

7. Baad Medicine

8. Annie

Please take the time to visit these blogs and admire the beautiful things they all produce.

I would also like to thank everybody who has been leaving me such lovely comments. My blogging is a bit erratic at the moment because life is currently so unsettling. Because of the bushfire situation we keep having to leave home. We left on Thursday and got back this morning (Saturday). It seems we will need to repeat the exercise on Tuesday. So come on everybody, lets all think rain thoughts. We need the rain to put an end to this fire season and to allow everybody in Victoria to get back to a normal life. All together now: RAIN!

Thursday, 26 February 2009

FO: German Dancing Socks I

The first pair of socks is finally completed.

I used 2.5 mm circular needles and knitted these top down and two at a time. The yarn is Patonyle. Lovely and soft with a good bit of stretch so it fits over the young man's calves quite snugly.

The pattern is from Charlene Schurch's More Sensational Knitted Socks. I used the 5 stitch pattern called Vertical Eyelets.

I had intended combining this pattern with Bordhi's cedar architecture but found it too difficult to accommodate the increases in the eyelet pattern. So in the end I stuck to the usual heel flap and gusset.

I did add a few garter stitches to the heel for a bit more interest.

Now I have to pluck up the courage to measure up the next pair of feet and legs that need dancing socks. This kid is tall with BIG feet. A lot of knitting will have to take place to get the next lot done. I will have to work out some sort of reward system for myself.

Tuesday, 24 February 2009

A Wonderful Surprise

Today I received this wonderful bounty (or should that be booty?).

Gorgeous yarn from my friend Helen. She sent me a luscious skein of laceweight - 70% Alpaca/20%sild/10% Cashmere - in Steely Blue. This yarn is so soft I can't stop petting it. And the other skein is a gorgeously dyed sock yarn (Assynt Winter). I don't know how you did it Helen but you've managed to combine all my favourite colours in to one skein. Swoon.... Do yourselves a favour and drop by Helen's website and check out her beautifully dyed yarns.

The yarn also provided me with a very timely pick me up. The bushfires in Victoria are still going. Yesterday a couple more broke out. One of those posed a threat for us and so we packed up again and went to stay with friends in the city. As we left home, the ash started to fall on us. Not a good feeling. We are back home again and although the fire is not yet under control it no longer poses a threat to us. At least not at the moment. Friday is predicted to be another bad fire day so we will be leaving home in the morning and hopefully we will be able to return on Saturday.

Needless to say Helen's wonderful yarn has already been stashed in my "evacuation kit" - I'm not letting it out of my sight!

Sunday, 15 February 2009

FO: Sleepy puppy

Yesterday I made this sleepy puppy for a cute little girl who is turning two.

I've lacked the concentration to knit this past week and this little fellow was just the right thing for me. It gave me a bit of instant gratification and reminded me of the pleasure knitting gives me.

You might have noticed that the light in the photo is slightly pink. This is because of the smoke haze from the bushfires. On Friday night when we drove home we saw the moon rise - it was blood red. Such an eerie sight.

Monday, 9 February 2009


I have been wondering how to post about this devastating event. I find it hard not to be too emotional. The images and tales of survival we have been confronted with clutch at my heart and make me weep. I feel so sorry for the thousands of people who have been affected by these horrific fires.

I happy to say that we are safe. We had an anxious time on Saturday and left home in the afternoon when we heard about the fire at Redesdale. At that stage the wind was blowing in a northerly direction towards us. Once the change came we were able to go back home but what created safety for us endangered many others.

The fires are still blazing. Many people are still in danger. We can only hope that the winds will drop.

If you would like to help you will find useful links here.

If you would like more detail on the fires this site will give you detailed coverage.

May the summer end soon for us.

Friday, 6 February 2009

Time for some knitting

Despite the heat and the excitement of the last few days I have actually done some knitting.

Firstly I have made good progress on the project which cannot be revealed yet. I'm about two thirds of the way.

Secondly, I have manged a few more repeats on my Maltese shawl.

It's not a difficult pattern, it's just that the yarn clings to my hands when it's hot and thus I can only knit when the weather is a little cooler.

And lastly, I have finally cast on for the German Dance Socks. I'm knitting the smaller size first to see how my experiment goes. I'm combining two knitting patterns. The actual pattern detail comes from Charlene Schurch's More Sensational Knitted Socks. I'm using her Vertical Eyelets pattern. I intend using Cat Bordhi's Cedar architecture for the heel and arch.

As usual I am knitting the socks two at a time on 2.5mm circulars and the yarn I'm using is Patonyle. The green Patonyle is some vinatge Patonyle I managed to swap on Ravelry. Why is it so difficult to find solid green sock yarn? Any ideas?

Now tomorrow is our horror weather day. By this evening I will have my project bags at the door ready to go should the need arise. Oh, and I thought I should probably add a pair of clean knickers, just to be on the safe side!

Thursday, 5 February 2009

Too much excitement

I haven't had an internet connection since Monday and that makes me feel very isolated. But it is the reason why we lost our connection that makes me feel stressed.

On Monday we experienced a tremendous lightning storm - but not a drop of rain. (It has now been 36 days since our last rain). The lightning caused 5 fires in our valley. One started behind our property about 300m from our house and another on the road in front of our house. We weren't hanging around so chucked a few valuables (including current knitting projects) in the car and took off. We didn't get very far when we came across a neighbour trying to put out a small fire with her feet. We stopped to help and with sticks, our feet and a shopping bag kept the fire contained until a fire truck came by and took over. We spent the rest of the afternoon at a neighbour's place until the all clear was given late in the afternoon.

The relief was short lived because on Tuesday the wind whipped up. In the afternoon we heard the fire truck siren as they rushed past our property. At this stage we still had no internet connection and thus couldn't check where the fire was. A while later we could hear Elvis in action. A neighbour called to tell us that there was yet another fire behind us and one lower down in our valley. So an anxious few hours passed with me constantly sniffing the wind for smoke and scanning the sky. But I'm happy to say that both the fires were eventually declared safe.

And then to add to our stress we discovered that the creek which supplies our water dried up yesterday. We do have two large tanks full of water and that should see us through to the end of summer but our garden will have to suffer.

Here's hoping for a speedy end to summer - with another 43C day coming up on Saturday I'm not really overflowing with optimism.