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Friday, July 30, 2010

Tess of D'Urbervilles

Last weekend I watched the Tess of the D'Urbervilles series (borrowed from the library) and became obsessed with the knitted shawls Tess wears in the series. I want. Especially the one she crosses across her middle and ties? at the back.

BBC's Tess of the D'Urbervilles

Don't try to watch the previews if you live in Australia because they don't work for this region unfortunately.

The series is rated M, making it not suitable for children to watch.

It is available from the ABC Shop in Australia Tess of the D'Urbervilles - 2 DVD Set $39.99.

I have been looking for similar patterns and I am pretty sure I have bone wool upstairs somewhere that would be perfect!

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Thursday, July 29, 2010

Let's Talk Yarn Overs

Yarn overs are my discovery this year and I love them. They make for much faster knitting and lend themselves to lots of patterns! If you have done garter and purl you can definitely do yarn overs and knit two together.
Here is an easy 'how to" that shows the pictures.

Simply take the yarn from where it is anchored on the right of the stitch on the right need under and wind it around over the top of the needle and do the next step (which will probably be knit two together or knit 1).
I nearly kicked myself that they were so easy and I had hesitated for so long.

Don't hesitate for as long as I did.

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I have a friend. We'll call her Kelly.

Kelly isn't her real name, but she has long skinny arms and can't find a jumper to fit her and wants to know where to get a jumper custom knit for her or for people with a need like her.

I have a few suggestions for her:
  • Go to your local Vinnies or other charity store and ask if they have an old knitting pattern section. Sit there a while, check what patterns they have. They are usually around 50c to $1.00 a pattern leaflet. Look for patterns in 5ply or 8ply Patons wool. Patterns from earlier decades seem to have fitted jumpers. Find one you love.
  • Go to your local library and spend some loving time at call no. NF 746.
  • Then ask all your acquaintances if they know anyone that knits for cash.
  • Or see how other girls cope with their long, skinny arms. My suggestion is that if you love the knitted look, but think your arms are holding you back, go for a long sleeve lycra fitted t-shirt, the same kind available at Kmart, Big W or Target nearly every season and mix it with a hand knitted cowl, a knitted scarf, a shawl or a poncho, and perhaps a trench coat?
  • I also happen to know that in the town where my friend works, there is a very good craft cottage in Cook Park. Go and have a chat, see if they have any custom knitters. In fact, looking at the website, I want to go there right now.  Park Guildry, Orange.
Hope these help. Looking forward to seeing you in wool.

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Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Lincraft have a Yarn sale

European yarns 50% off. Was $4.99 a ball down to $2.49 a ball.

Sale starts Thursday 29th July to Sunday 8th of August.


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The Crowbar Scarf

"Are you knitting with crowbars?" was the opening line to a conversation I had yesterday with an older lady as she came and sat on the seat beside me and voiced her concerns about the lack of seats in the main street of our local strip of shops that have recently (and much to the inconvenience of ALL) been repaved.

No, I wasn't knitting with crowbars, but size 9mm Milward knitting needles and this is what I was knitting.

When I was cleaning up my stash a little a few weeks ago, I found a ball of this homespun rustic wool (that smells of lanolin and has grass in it, so it really is rustic) and put it aside. Inspiration struck and this is what I did with it.

The pattern is as follows:

Cast on 7 stitches.

Knit first row, purl second row.

*Next row: Knit 2, Yarn Over, Knit 2 together, Yarn Over, Knit 2 together, Knit 1.

Purl next row.*

Repeat from * to * until happy with the length (or the ball is nearly finished). I reckon mine is around 4 metres long.

Knit next row and then cast off using purl on the next row.

Done. Weave in ends.

Wind it round and round like a garden hose and toss it over your head. Enjoy.

This pattern is not to be used commercially or to be resold without my written permission.

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Monday, July 26, 2010

Two Books with photos of characters knitting for the kids

Last night I had the pleasure of reading to my son two books with knitting featured!

Golden Books Seven Little Postmen by Margaret Wise Brown

- In this book grandma knits ...

Who Sank the Boat? by Pamela Allen

- In this book a sheep knits!

So nice to read a book with a character knitting. Can you name more?

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Sunday, July 25, 2010

Knitting Graffiti Strikes Huskisson!

Today I saw my first live instance of this at the Lady Denman Heritage Complex at Huskisson, New South Wales and I was kicking myself I forgot the camera.

Turns out it was part of a GUERRILLA KNITTING WORKSHOP held on Saturday June 12.

More knitting workshops are to be held at Meroogal Historic Home in Nowra, with contact details listed on the website.

Jervis Bay Arts

It is item 21.

Love it or hate it?

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Friday, July 23, 2010

My Vinnies Scarf

Here it is. The work in progress.

And the finished results...

Knitted on those 6.5 mm needles I bought the other day for $2. Notice how the needles narrow significantly as they get towards the plastic cord. Stitches jump down here and you have to push them back through and may potentially split the wool.

This used three of the Patons Totem balls which may have been partial balls to begin with.

The pattern is as follows.

Cast on 17 stitches. (I nearly always use a cable cast on).

*Knit first two rows.

Third row ... knit 2, purl 1, knit 2 together, knit 2 together, yarn over and knit 1, yarn over and knit 1, yarn over and knit 1, yarn over and knit 2 together, knit two together, purl 1, knit 2.

Fourth row ... purl

Then recommence pattern at *.

At the end I completed the pattern with a purl row, did a knit row and cast off.

I loved knitting with this wool ... it was vibrant, soft and scrunchy. Nothing quite compares to wool.

When knitting, make sure you knit it long enough to fold in half and poke ends through loop.

And I guess this scarf may have cost about ...hmm $0.60. Bargain. I love Vinnies.

This pattern is not to be used commercially or to be resold without my written permission.

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Wednesday, July 21, 2010

My Friend Sharona

This is a photo of the scarf I knitted in the Feather and Fan pattern for my friend Sharon.

Knitted in burnt orange in Lincraft DK house brand wool. Some of the DK stuff by Lincraft is better than others. Fortunately this was a good batch with no need for any stop starting in the knitting, casting on and casting off without one break in the yarn.

My friend Sharon has just started knitting. Hope she "Gets the Knack". Oh, I am funny. That was a pun.

My other name for this post was going to be Anne of Feather & Fans ...

You might notice the little hand to the side. "What there is photo being taken and I'm not in it ... must fix that straight away." And then the camera went flat. So this the photo you got bloggie.

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Is Knitting a Dying Art??

I sent my younger brother a link to my blog the other day and he congratulated me for keeping a dying art alive.

If only I could convince him to look at Ravelry! 30,000+ patterns, set up by young whipper snappers!

Not so much a dying art, but I guess an art that isn't done a lot openly in public maybe?

I like to knit wherever I am ... at the bus stop, the railway station, on the train, while my husband is driving, while visiting landmarks ...I have two friends that have felt the influence of my constant knitting and taken up the needles this year and one friend that is going great guns with the crochet hook.

And whenever I visit my sister's kids, the oldest two get out their knitting and show me their progress.

Teach you kids to knit. Or at least try to.

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You have to love Vinnies

I do. So there.

Yesterday I went to Vinnies at Riverwood without my son who was at kindergarten (far less stress to be in Vinnies without son ...) and they had a half price sale (LUCKY ME). I purchased two pairs of knitting needles for 50c each set, four balls of a retro yellow/black Patons Totem wool in shade 8785 complete with white, pink and orange labels for 50c for the lot, and several pattern books for around 25c each.

So if you see me with a thinnish yellow woollen scarf, you will know ... in fact I would probably post it ...

One book I bought is with patterns by Patons & Baldwins (Book No. R. 11) and has baby patterns called: "Bright Eyes" - "Little Man" - "Jean" - "Gaylia" - "Elizabeth" - "Primula" - "Pam" - "Joyce" - "Stardust" - "Marigold" - "Sweet Dreams" - "Jill" - "Pamela" - "Peggy" - "Mary" - "Diana" - "Coral" - "Heigh Ho" - "Peek-A-Boo" and "Heather".

If I think of it, I will post a photo.

They are of a time gone by when many (?) mothers knitted their darling babies and toddlers clothes. This book is heavily taped together with yellowing sticky tape, and well loved. Interestingly patterns of this age are held by the Australian National Library.

While I won't be knitting the baby patterns, the patterning of the stitches is of interest.

Interested in the Patons website?

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Sunday, July 18, 2010

Looking like some sort of python ...

Curled up on a chopped log, is an easy scarf to knit if you have mastered Yarn Overs.

Cast on 21 stitches over 8mm needles.

Knit 1 row.
Purl next row.

^Next row: Knit 2, *Yarn over, Knit 2 together* until end of row, Knit 1.

Purl next row.

Repeat last two rows twice.^

The Purl 1 row, Knit 1 row, Purl 1 row.

Then repeat from ^ to ^.

This is knitted in Cosy Wool by Lincraft, which on trying to find at the Lincraft website, I think may no longer be available through the website, though may still be in some shops. This colourway is apparently called "Natural Mix".

If purchasing for a special project and you may need more than one ball ALWAYS check that the DYE LOTS and the colour are exactly the same with each ball, and preferably purchase all yarn at the same time so you can physically compare it.

I'd like to thank my niece for her wonderful top photo. I told her we were modeling scarves and she was my assistant. I guess I was hers.

This pattern is not to be used commercially or to be resold without my written permission.

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Saturday, July 17, 2010

Jo Sharp Magazines

Get them while they are hot!

While away, I went to a newsagent at South West Rocks, New South Wales and picked up two Jo Sharp Contempory Knitting Magazines/Books for $14.95, instead of the usual $14.95 or more each.

1. Contempory Knitting - 32 knitting patterns, small projects & easy knits.

2. Contempory Knitting by Jo Sharp - 34 knitting patterns, Wrap yourself in fabulous knits, Summer and winter patterns, Easy knitting you'll love to wear.

They are published by Universal Magazines.

Some of the Jo Sharp patterns are available at her website which is, provided you join membership.

Jo Sharp books are also available on Amazon.

Be aware also, there are corrections to some of these patterns here.

The photography in these books is delicious.

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Lincraft Surprise Yarn Blue

A work in progress .... and the finished article.

I cast on 20 stitches on 4.5 mm needles and knitted and on the last stitch of every row, knitted through back of loop to tighten the last stitch, a little trick I learned in the laundry room at SWR. You might also note, I was using circular needles, only for the fact you don't have to hunt around in your bag to find the other needle.

I can't say I was thoroughly pleased with this Surprise Yarn. Too many knot joins in the middle of knitting, which required unpicking and a little fixing together.

Overall I think it looks pretty nice, considering it isn't wool, despite the artistic shot taken. Thank you sheep model.

This scarf I am keeping for me!

I am working on something else with my other Surprise Yarn which I will post when completed.

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Friday, July 16, 2010

A Kiss Scarf

This scarf is knitted in very easy, but effective "Mistake Rib".

Cast on 31 stitches over 8mm needles.

Each row *K 2, P 1* to last stitch, K1.

Repeat on every row.

This is knitted in Sean Sheep Wool (Machine Wash) "Stirling" from Big W, in colour "Weekend". Three 50g balls were used and they are $2.86 or thereabouts each, soft and lush, and composed of 100% Australian Wool, though Made in China.

The website is, and the yarn is on this page here.

Lots of projects here too.

I only wish my Big W had more of the colourways. Oh well. Can't have everything.

I'd like to thank my vaccumn cleaner for assisting in modeling for this photo.

Forgot to mention, this is going to my son's Kindergarten Teacher. She is an ace at Yoga.

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Monday, July 5, 2010

I have to admit

I bought more wool today. Want to hear my justification?

I blame the RTA, solely and wholly, for making me go to Births, Deaths and Marriages and get a replacement Birth Certificate for my 20 year old one pasted together with brown packing tape and for them making me wait again while they faxed the replacement one back to BDM to confirm my existence. I had been to BDM not an hour before to get the certificate and it had today's date on it.

While the BDM people were very nice and FAST, the RTA took about 2 hours for the whole process. Next time I go to the RTA, I am taking my swag.

I took my knitting. Having first seen the counter person, while I was waiting I nearly completed another Sydney Headband (and I knitted at the counter when she called me back and was fiddling with the paperwork ...)

Afterwards, I rewarded my efforts with a trip to Lincraft and bought four balls of Lincraft Surprise yarn. I want the surprise. NOW. And a pair of size 6mm needles within easy reach.


And I have to admit, I am learning how to make these hot links work so they post the link to a new page instead of closing my page down. Yay for me!

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Sunday, July 4, 2010

Knitting Needles and Resisiting the Urge

I went to Big W today and while I did look at wool and needles, I am happy to report that I resisted the urge to purchase more.

Perhaps my Saturday afternoon spent going through my wool, frogging some "never going to be completed" knitting and reclaiming some needles lost in the scheme of things helped.

I did look lovingly at the 8mm needles, especially the 30 cm ones. Big W have really good "Pony" brand needles. The other place surprisingly that I have found good for a wide variety of needles of different sizes is the Hot Dollar shop at Bankstown.

My morning was spent knitting a ghastly coloured black and bright neon green headband for my daughter's friend. She picked the colours. Perk.

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Friday, July 2, 2010

An Emerald Island Scarf


This scarf pattern is from Page 78 of the Annual 2007 Creative Knitting Magazine (Australia) (which I purchased ex-library...). It is not called this, it is called something else which relates to the yarn used in the pattern.

I've knitted as per pattern and added two rows of garter before recommencing pattern. Does this make it my pattern? Not publishing pattern, only my photo of said scarf.

The cast on end was very nice and wavy as a result of the pattern and the cast off edge rather dull and straight. I guess that this scarf can only be worn with proper winding around the neck, starting at the cast off edge. Knitted in Lincraft's Cosy yarn (colour Moss Green) which I picked up sometime last year as "water damaged" for $2, on 8mm needles. I think it was supposed to be 8 ply wool, but it seemed thinner. Like 5 ply, but very soft and scrunchy, the colour is lovely and it feels delicious.

I took the photo on a green towel on my bed. I'm a knitter, not a photographer.

Blogging has inspired me to finish some of my UFO's (Unfinished Objects) so I can:
(a) give them to their intended recipients
(b) have a personal record of them
(c) get them out of my mounting pile of knitting paraphernalia
(d) relieve me of the guilt of having promised something and then not completing.
(e) all of the above.

And so I am off to complete my son's kindergarten teacher's scarf, which I had knitted and had cast off. It was a little short, so with the third ball, I am cutting the frindge, attaching to the cast on edge, counting how many I need for the cast off edge, pulling out the cast off, reattaching the third ball and knitting until I am finished.

I also watched "P.S.I Love You" which inspired the name. Ireland looks beautiful.

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The Perfect Book for Little Girls

Jane Bull's Made by Me

This is so, so cute!

Check out the kids section of your library ...I did today. Knitting and other handicrafts float around call no. 746. Check out Adult Non Fiction and Junior Non Fiction.

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If you haven't checked it out yet, sign up for With 30,074 patterns available, this is a must. Some are free, some are crochet and some come at a small cost. Well worth a look.

Once you have been to Ravelry, you will feel like you have been to the biggest knitting candy store in the world.

I'm not kidding.

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Thursday, July 1, 2010

Australian Knitting Magazines

Having borrowed from the library, I am currently subscribing to:

Australian Knitting Magazine

and also

Creative Knitting Magazine

Check out your local library and see if they stock the magazines or can purchase them for your library. Now is a great time to do that ... their budgets just reopened!!

I also love checking out what books my local library has and borrowing them before possibly purchasing them.

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