A blog for the Mt Lawley Stitch'n'Bitchers. If you're in Perth, WA, and you like to knit, crochet or just gossip— or if you want to learn how— come down to Exomod in Mt Lawley every Monday from 7.30pm and catch some crafty action! Email Clementine for more info: indienial (at) gmail (dot) com

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Uh oh...
I just bought a spinning wheel. The trouble starts here! Or to be more accurate, it starts when my esteemed partner finds out. Crap!

SNB Monday Nite Pix! I've been so slack & not posted in AGES.. sorry 'bout that.. yes I know, I suck, as Clementine would say. Have just started on the high neck lace top from Vogue Mag that clare is also doing, not sure how I'll go with this!

Monday, August 28, 2006

Despite promising LupinBunny I wouldn't go to the book sale until Saturday(giving her ample time to buy all the knitting books), I caved in and went on Friday night.

I was just explaining to my little buddy Trin that we were heading straight to the craft section to get to all the knitting books before Ms Bunny got them, when.... DOOM! Who do I see, but the rabbit herself. D'oh!

She's listed below what she ended up with, but it can basically be summarised as "all the good stuff". When I asked what was left, she grinned and said "Oh, I think there's a book on crochet in there somewhere..."

Hah. There was also 'Knitting in Vogue' 1, 2 and 3; 'Funky Knitting' (which I plan on giving to Trin when she is old enough to read knitting patterns), a book called "How to Spin Your Own Wool And Dye It And Spin It' (which my inner sub-editor insists should be called 'How to Spin, Dye and Weave Your Own Wool'... but my inner sub-editor is crap, because look at how much I ramble) ... and my new favourite book, Pam Brown's Knitting Encyclopaedia.

The Knitting Encyclopaedia isn't exhaustive, it's more of a basic knitting guide, but with actual useful details. It should be called “Remedial Knitting 101 (special ed.)" or “So you think you can knit? You can’t! You’re doing it all wrong! But I will help you.”

...Well, that last one is a bit long and unwieldy, but it pretty much sums up the book. Suddenly I understand things which went straight over my head I read them elsewhere. And by things, I mean, really basic things...

I guess it's confession time. I am really a crap knitter.

With a little help from my new knitting guru, I finally worked out left slanting decrease and right slanting decrease. You know how you can see something written so many times in different ways, but still not really get it, but then someone rewords it just a little bit and suddenly it all clicks? That happened.

I also discovered I was doing SSK wrong! Whoops. No wonder it never looked quite right. I did start off doing it correctly, but then I forgot and never bothered to check: "ah, yeah, I think it's done like that"... it wasn't.

Now I am on a mission to learn and understand the in/de-crease stitches in all their forms. And then I will get on to the cast ons/offs, which I also never really bothered to learn unless a pattern specified which one to use.
If it doesn't specify, I just go “Ah, stuff it, I’ll just use one I already know!” which is really lazy. And also a really bad idea, because there are different cast-ons FOR A REASON. I just never bothered to find out what that reason is, until now.

So yeah. Now everyone knows my little secret. Please don't judge me! With God's help (or Pam Brown's help) I will overcome my total lack of knowledge, and one day... one day... I will knit well!

Saturday, August 26, 2006

my knittin'-booty from the Save the Children book sale stands thus:
- Small stitch dictionary, which i really quite like (for its size)
- 1960s(?) Patonyle 'stitches and patterns' booklet. Stitches good, patterns boring.
- Some 1970s book of stitches and patterns that i haven't looked at closely yet.

I was hopeful of finding a Reader's Digest knitting encyclopedia, or a Vogue one. but nothin' doing. No RD Sewing Encyclopedias either! (kicking myself for not buying one of the three i saw at a book sale last year).

(i also bought two old TimeLife cookery books that i didn't have. Eggs and Cheese, and Preserving. Jams and 'Eggs Glaz'd With Cucumbers'* for all!

* blergh. I hate eggs. they make me throw up. this recipe is the grossest thing i can think of. luckily the cheese section is good. even tells you how to make ricotta.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Spot the mistakes?yes. the infinitely frustrating high neck top.

mistake #1: the absence of two bobbles. caused by the fact that the rest of the bobbles were knit in a short row, and when i finally closed up the short rows i didn't notice/ think to add some bobbles on.

mistake #2: Underneath the top row of bobbles is a weird.... thing. the stitches go sort of zig-zaggy. is this twisted stitches? i don't know. i don't know WHAT i did there.

ultimate question: do i frog to pre-the short rows, or do i suck it up, accept that this damn thing is riddled with 'personality' and keep going?

eta: hope the image is bright enough to see. it is on my monitor. i've been having problems with natural/ flash light on the camera recently.

eta: i really, really wish i was just knitting, like, a garter stitch scarf right now.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Dare I become I sock warrior?


Sign up and info here. Tempted, even if I am a slow knitter...

Thursday, August 17, 2006

it looks like warts! all those cute little polka dots are messy and blobby and knobbly! i am definitely ripping them out, but i don't know what to replace them with... my dilemma is explained in great detail here, so go give me some advice.
the dumb old vogue pattern isn't helping either. huh, 'vague pattern' more like it. it's four stars of hardness not because the pattern is hard, but they don't include a whole heap of details. like, that you should continue the wart-pattern while doing the short row shaping. you've got to guess that from the picture. not that i've done the short rows yet. i'm right up to them, but i'm going to rip back to that lace panel (which is slightly nicer than it looks in the picture in real life).
grump, grump grump.
at least i finally got a button to finish my sari silk miniscarf. i really wanted a clear plastic one, but couldn't find one in the sewing stuff. then i found a spare button stitched to the care label of my overpriced peter alexander PJs. I knew there was a reason i paid so much for sleepwear!

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Brisvegas SnB is AWESOME! Such very cool chickies, fantastic venue, and OH MY GOD, the skillz! They have mad, mad skillz! I found me another knitting guru (Thanks jenG!).

But I have stuffed up a pattern repeat waaaay back in about the fourth row of Vogue cardy, and I only just noticed. Since I only just noticed, it's obviously not (erm) that noticeable, but I think it's time to frog again. I'm determined to knit at least ONE perfect thing in my lifetime. Still, I seem to be doing more frogging than knitting recently.

I'm writing this at Brisvegas airport- I'm so cool! Or maybe just bored. But am looking forward to coming home and seeing the progress my very favourite SnBers have made, so get the woolly wonders out, ladies!

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

hmmm.. so the image is a little dark, but look! that's about a third of the Vogue high neck lace top!
i can unknit about as fast i can knit now, given the ridiculously complex lace and my refusal to scrutinise lace charts closely before happily digging the sticks in.
i've added an extra two inches of stocking stitch, because the pattern as given ends just below the bellybutton. less flattering for the girl who wears her jeans just above her pubic bone (far be it for me to fight the vagaries of fashion).
you can't see from the pic, but i'm worried the little blobby 'knot stitches' above the lace panel looks less like knots and more like warts/ terrible knitting accidents. they pop out an awful lot.

i'm now deliberately holding off buying the much needed anatolia needles. this baby is whipping up so quickly (i started on the weekend), and is such an interesting challenge that i don't want to go back to the slipstitch just yet. and if i keep up the pace, it'll be finished and i'll be back to anatolia before this stormy weather halts.

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Guess what? Patonyle dyes just fine with KoolAid ;-)


Photos later...

And socks to come..

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Where it's At.
My promise to not knit another thing till Anatolia was finished fell to pieces.
i've finished the sari silk neckwarmer (such a silly word, neckwarmer, even if that's what it does. I shall call it a miniscarf). it's totally munted. i dropped and gained stitches like a career streetfighter, and the eyelets didn't match evenly across the bottom. but who cares? it looks okay and was fun to knit. actually, it was so much fun that i want more sari silk, more! i want to knit EVERYTHING in sari silk! if anyone wants to split a bulk wholesale purchase from india (c/o ebay) let me know (about $60 inc postage for a kilo of yarn).

i'm well into a gauge swatch for the vogue top (stitches are still a wee bit wibbly when i knit continental).

Anatolia is on hiatus because I lost a needle.
No, i don't know how i did it. well, it happened somewhere between my bedroom (where i knit), my car, badly coloured boy's place (where i take my knitting) and returning home again.
But I only have one 3mm needle, and when i went to spotlight last week to buy another they only had aluminium 3mms and i want the slight spring you get in bamboo to save my hands from that teeny weeny gauge.
still, the enforced hiatus has given me new energy for (that and the realisation that i only own two wearable jumpers) to make those damn sleeves and finish her off.

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Look, that shirt you admired Lupinbunny!


Wednesday, August 02, 2006

The Unravelling of Candygan

it's blurry cos of my TEARS!
Originally uploaded by indienial.

This is how my Candygan arrived at Stitch'n'Bitch on Monday. I was 1.5 inches off finishing! Just a few more rows of ribbing... I would be wearing this cardigan on the plane when I go on holiday on Friday!
And then I decided to try it on so the live studio audience could cast their votes. Unfortunately, the unanimous consensus was that the fit was "a little odd" (I wish I'd remembered to get photos of this).

It turns out, my neck isn't six feet wide, and my armpits are more than 2 inches above my waist. A few people said it was passable, but really, they were just being nice.

So I ripped.

I make baby Angora goats cry!
Originally uploaded by indienial.

... and I ripped, and I ripped. Kid mohair is not the best yarn for frogging, and I ended up with a lot of little tiny balls of yarn and a huge amount of fluff. And eventually, I was back to this:

Originally uploaded by indienial.

Two sleeves and a waistband. Aargh. All those hours and hours of boring stockinette, decreasing every four rows... gone. Just like that. (To be fair, it wasn't really "just like that"... it actually took me nearly all night to frog this back, but that doesn't sound so dramatic.)

I have gone through the pattern so many times trying to work out where it all went wrong, but I followed the pattern reasonably closely, for me. I think the biggest problem was caused by me ignoring my instincts and casting off for the arm holes two inches above the waistband (as per pattern instructions). That would be fine if you're a waif-like Keira Knightley build, but unfortunately, I'm more like a Jordan. I used to be a Pammie, but "the problem" has increased as I've got older. Too much chicken, I think.

Luckily, the yarn I used was on sale and still available in the same dye-lot. A small mercy since the stuff salvaged from the frogged cardy is completely unusable for anything except for cat-bait. So I bought another two balls, and tonight, I will start again.