Tuesday, 18 November 2008

How to make a quick purple shawl

Take two skeins of Noro Lily Multi (now discontinued) that you got for half price from a little yarn store in Kyoto.

Team it up with a couple of balls of vivid purple Lincraft Bamboozle which you just happen to have lying about.

Realise that they look like they were made to go together and start thinking that perhaps a shawl is called for.

Surf through your Ravelry favourited patterns tagged "shawl".

Find two patterns that are conceptually very similar - La La's Simple Shawl (32 projects on Ravelry) and Simple Yet Effective Shawl (307 projects on Ravelry).

Compare the pair.

Decide to the take the road slightly less travelled and opt for La La's Simple Shawl - this one also has a teensy bit of "lace" for an extra bit of interest.

Start knitting.

Finish knitting and model.

Take satisfaction in using up just about every last skerrick of the four skeins.

Ravellers can see not much more of the project here:

Sunday, 16 November 2008

I spun some yarn

DSC02895, originally uploaded by Paisley Womble.

South African Fine Top in colourway Party Hat 1. Purchased from Ewe give me the knits. (Sticking with local sellers for the moment - the Australian dollar being so cactus at the moment means that I really need to give a lot more thought to buying stuff from overseas). I forgot to take a picture of the roving pre-spinning.

It took a while to get the hang of this. Spinning prepared top, rather than greasy wool straight off the sheep's back, requires much slower treadling and extra care to stop it getting away from you.

Having said that, there's no wastage at my end. The plait of roving was 110 g and every last bit of that has gone into the skein. I've got no idea of the yardage or the wpi. As you can see from the photo, it's not perfectly even, but I'd hazard a guess from eyeballing it, that it would average out at about an 8 ply (DK).

Charm squares quilted

DSC02896, originally uploaded by Paisley Womble.

I decided that I had let this one drag on for far too long, so last night and this morning I got my fingers into gear and finished the quilting. Now there is just some hand-sewing to fix the binding on the back.

I love this part of the process. Once the little bit of texture that quilting adds to a piece is completed and then the whole thing is bound, the promise of the initial idea is revealed.

Some quilts work better than others, but I always find myself pleasantly surprised at the lift that things get when they're finished off properly. I think one of the reasons that I sometimes take so long is that I get disillusioned with the project in progress. Getting to the finish line almost becomes an intellectual exercise in reminding myself that this has always been the rhythm of things.

Tuesday, 4 November 2008

Darned socks.....

DSC02890, originally uploaded by Paisley Womble.

Darning these socks has been in my "gunna do" pile for quite some time. This afternoon I finally just sucked it up and did them - and it really doesn't take that long. If you look closely, I obviously have a classic spot where the sock (just one out of each pair, despite my attempts to alternate wearing them between left and right foot) wears out.
Today is Cup Day here in Melbourne and we have the day off. I have had a lovely day remaining completely oblivious of which horse has won "the race that stops a nation". I've been catching up on the backlog of podcasts that has been building up in my iTunes, baking a Christmas cake ( a Nigella recipe - tried it last year for the first time and loved it) and sewing myself a Heath Robinson-ish spinning apron.