Cuteness alert … oh, and some knitting too

Professional portrait photographer, the lovely Kenny Yam, who also happens to be a friend of a friend, was our sole male guest at Nadie’s Biggest Morning Tea Cancer Fundraiser last Thursday. Of course I’m a little bit biased but I have to say that under somewhat less than ideal studio conditions, in the middle of the happy chaos of cucumber sandwhiches, fairy bread, cups of tea, multiple conversations, and at least one baby in need of more sleep, he managed to get some wonderful pics.

With his permission, I’m sharing this pic of a shaggy dog myself, my late-mother’s younger sister Fay, Abby [ of course ] and her yummy mummy Nadie [ or Renata as she now prefers to be called ]


For those of you playing along at home this means Fay is Abigail’s Great Grand Aunt.

and just so that I can’t be accused of favouritism, here’s both my gorgeous girls:

Guess which one had just been woken up?


and no, I didn’t make the cute wee jacket. Other Nannie Janice did. Debbie Bliss Baby Duffle for anyone that’s interested

and yes, I did make one for Abby because Asher’s one was just

so damn cute:130 (2)

BTW If anyone in Melbourne would like to get in touch with Kenny, PM me for his email.

A few finishes

Okay I’ve been really lousy the last few weeks/ months at actually getting the blog posts written. As has happened before, I write bits of them in my head under the shower, but somehow this long, hot Aussie Summer [ hottest since they began keeping records ] which is now continuing into Autumn, just saps my ability to put a coherent thought together by the time I actually get to the keyboard. Currently in our third week of temps above [ often well above ] 30C, with several more days in this current spell.

So, while there are momentous family things to show-n-tell, like a double baptism, a new great-nephew [ yesterday, to Rebecca and Nick, a boy, Edward, no other deets yet ] and loads of baby cuteness, as well as the usual round of ‘life in the country’, I’m just going to settle for photos of a bunch of finished bits and pieces that I largely forgot to document.

These aren’t necessarily in order either.

So first, a crochet blanket in 4ply/fingering cotton, made to fit Abby’s big girl cot [crib] so 106cm / 42 inches square. Mostly BWM Cotton from the stash with a border of a variegated yarn that you can’t see in the pics, so you’ll have to trust me that Maz gave me 3 balls of this pink/jade/mint/magenta colourway a few years ago and this just seemed like the perfect project for it. There’s a shot of the yarn in this post if you can be bothered going back to look.


Now, this next piece is the fault of my friend Alex from ZigoZago who has recently been bitten by the crochet bug. In addition to all sorts of throws and table mats and so on, she’s been making little crochet covers for empty jars.  I know that sounds perhaps a bit insane, but they make really cute little containers for hooks, needles, pencils, or in my case, spindles.

Alex has them scattered around her shop, and I thought … well … okay, maybe just one

So this is vintage cream wool, about 6ply/sport weight, and playing with faux-cables,


which were then fulled/felted to fit an empty container.


I really like how the ‘cables’ pop after a bit of soap, hot HOT water and elbow grease.

This next blankie, I mainly constructed back before Abby was born, in fact most of it was done before we even knew that she was a she, and only the final mauve was added once we knew that she was ABBY.

Anyway, I didn’t originally block the blanket, so when Nadie decided that she wanted a wool one big enough for the cot, I only needed to add the turquoise and cobalt, and then to block it out, for it to transform from bassinet to big girl cot.


and speaking of cots, I needed to make a fitted sheet for the Portacot that stays at Nannie’s, so a quick dip into the humungous stash of suitable 100% cotton quilt fabrics produced a couple of metres of this happy print of suns, that  suits the red cot.


and a cotton blankie for same, which happily – and totally coincidentally  – contains many of the other colours in the fabric that I used for the sheet [ and, surprise, surprise, this blankie somehow ended up down at Nadie’s with all the others, so either this, or the one earlier in the post, will eventually have to make the trip back up here, once someone decides which one suits  which bedroom best ]


By now, you’re probably getting a bit glazed around the eyes, and hoping this post is finis.


Not finished yet.

One of the little tops I made before Abby arrived, proved to be a little too tight at the hem, so I unpicked it and added a couple of rows of ruffles [ this one is also in BWM’s 4ply cotton ]008

Converted a onsie into a little sundress 019

and finally this week, did a quick test knit for Madeleine of YarnMadness for this new pattern she’s designed. It was going to be called ‘Spik’ which is Swedish for Spike, but someone objected to an imagined ethnic slur, so now it will be named ‘Tagg’ instead, which means thorn. I’m sure that you can all work out why she’s given it that name. Cute pattern, easy knit in DK or light worsted, so keep an eye out for the pattern release.

Mine’s in the 3 month size – for Abigail obviously – and in BWM cotton yet again but this time the 8ply.


So there we are all caught up on the ‘making-things’ front .

Now if I can just catch you up on all that other stuff.

Maybe if the temp drops a bit later in the week.

Last project for 2012 ?

After falling way off the radar in the middle of the year post-surgery and in the throes of the Golden Staph that hitched a ride home with me, there were a couple three lost months where nothing was read, knitted, gardened or written about. That was followed by an extended period in wrist splints so again, not a lot of note.

All things considered, given the paucity of posts, I’m thankful that so many of you stuck around.

Then Silly Season Christmas hove onto the horizon and suddenly I was back.

The last couple of weeks have been a blur of visits to Melbourne [ new grandbaby ] more visits to Melbourne [ Nadie needing emergency surgery and transfusions as a result of post-partum complications ] More more visits to Melbourne [ Opera Gala Concert  and more baby snuggling ] and finally more, more, more visiting Melbourne [ Christmas ]

Somewhere in the midst of all of this, there was time for a bit of gardening [ gentle – may I refer you to the bit above about wrist splints? ] and even some post-Christmas knitting: another cotton dress for Abby [ ravlink ]


and some crochet time. I have made a start on next Christmas’s snowflakes. About a dozen I think.

and just yesterday morning, I decided that I should make a small lightweight wrap for Nadie to use while feeding in public


… or possibly it’s for Abby’s bassinet  for days when it’s a wee bit too warm for this wool one.


The yarn is a lovely silky soft drapey bamboo and was originally ivory. I used it to knit a sort of cami thing a few years ago. Then dyed the finished garment purple. Then decided I wasn’t going to wear it and frogged it [ rippit ] Which made for an interesting mottled, obviously hand-dyed yarn where the dye had permeated some sections of the knitted yarn more fully than others.


I’ve used this stitch a lot in the past but it’s particularly suited to baby blankets.


Not too lacy for small fingers to get tangled in, looks good and works up at a reasonable speed … AND it only has one pattern row that you repeat and repeat  until you’ve made a piece the size you want … or run out of yarn … or gotten tired of doing it. … or all of the above.

So that’s my official last creation for 2012.

and here’s the link to most of the rest of it [ except the ones that I didn’t photograph and the crochet snowflakes that got given away so fast I lost my count ]

So … last one unless I get my skates on cos it’ll be the New Year in a little over ten hours.

The good news is ..

that the intense, constricting chest pain [ which most of you didn’t know about, apart from a deliberately vague comment a few months back about health issues ] that the medico thought was acute coronary troubles, isn’t.

In fact, after three heart ultrasounds and the dreaded treadmill test, I can confidently say that my heart is as strong as … well … the proverbial large emasculated bovine.

The gallbladder ultrasound that was supposedly for purposes of elimination, didn’t … eliminate that is.

So as of Friday week, the 17th of August, my gallbladder and I will be parting company. Permanently.

and with little attempt at a segue:

Thanks to my somewhat patchy blogging of late [ see above for one of the reasons ] it transpires that there are quite a few things finished this year that I have totally failed to document blogwise.

The current count for projects finished since January 1st is 51.

Granted a lot of that is new baby sized, but it does also include 9 shawls, four baby blankets and two adult cardigans,

and as I am never likely to catch up the backlog of reportage, you can find them all here [ except for Chris’ neckwarmer which I forgot to photograph. It’s a big knitted tube. It’s navy 3 x 3 rib. You can use your imagination ]

Blood & Roses


and herewith the medals it was awarded in the Rav coughmutter* Games

pattern: Holden Shawlette available free on Ravelry here

yarn: Zauberball in Charisma [ supposedly a sock yarn but it’s an unplied singles so not something I would consider sturdy enough for socks, plus … too pretty ] from the Wool & Sheep Show haul 2012

needles: 4mm KPs and no coming apart dramas

started during the Opening Ceremony of the Olympics [ July 28th 6.30am ]

finished knitting August 2nd [ blocked and ends sewn in August 4 ]

and I’d love to be able to tell you that I planned to have the colour changes in the yarn fall exactly in line with the garter stitch rows dividing up the lace … but no, that was just the way it decided to happen. Ditto for having the darkest part of the yarn form the border. Sometimes the gods of knitting are smiling, and just maybe they thought they owed me one after the saga of the cursed jacket.

* happily appropriating Nadie’s phrase. Ravellenic Games …pffft … they’re the bloody Ravelympics.