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Name: knitabulous
Location: Mt Keira, New South Wales, Australia

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Knitting Alone
Knitspot Morning Glory Wrap Frost Flowers and Leaves Pomatomus Socks One Day
Sarcelle A different Phildar swing jacket - No 23A Donyale Socks


27 Jun 2007

What do you think the chances of the person who named this colour yarn 'watermelon' has never actually seen one?

My very own fifteen minutes

25 Jun 2007

Before I hear this on email or by SMS (which is usually how I find out about these things).....

If you see YARN magazine issue 4 in the newsagent or bookshop, flick to the contents page.

See that sweaty woman in the blue and white caftan knitting with the massage parlour girls in Thailand?

That's me that is.

Then take the magazine to the counter and buy it of course.

Revisiting my teenage slang

22 Jun 2007

My sister and I spent the day together yesterday without any of the children. I adore my sister, we are like a pair of jabbering monkeys when we're together, the best part about being together is that we share the most wicked sense of humour, and we tend to get caught in our own little world where hysterical things happen around us all the time.

So, yesterday she wanted to buy a pair of boots. She lives on the lower north shore - dahling - I live in the blue collar working man's Wollongong. We love the differences in the shopping experiences in the two places. In Chatswood, the shopgirls can't be bothered even pretending to be friendly to you. In Wollongong, they chase you out into the street when you leave to tell you about their life history.

In an attempt to return to our teenage years, we spent the day trying to use the teenage slang words that have long been forgotten. We got the the boots, which she wanted to wear with her jeans, and then she wanted to buy a cute tshirt to go with the ensemble.

We looked in Myer. We looked in David Jones. We looked in Just Jeans. Nada.

"I know where you'll find a top" said I "In the moll shop".

"What do you mean the moll shop?" she laughed.

"Well, what Supre is to bushpig, the moll shop is to molls" said I. "It's where the molls go to buy their clothes"

So we went to the moll shop. When we arrived, there were three pretty but identical skeletal molls tittering away in the doorway - you know the type - the ones that try out for Big Brother but don't get in because they're too stupid. If you've seen the show you'll realise this is a very low bar to be under.

"I see what you mean" says my sister "Molls".

Anyway, she looks around and states that this is definitely the shop for the finding of the cute top.

Friends, I kid you not when I say she forked out ten minutes later THREE HUNDRED AND FORTY FIVE dollars for ONE PAIR OF JEANS !! The hundred dollar tshirt from Spain looked so good with it, and it was reduced from two hundred and forty five dollars, but she felt that a bit too expensive for a tiny t shirt.

I was agog. The molls were ecstatic. "Those jeans look soooo fab!!" "I'm getting those exact same ones" "They're new just in, aren't they unreal" "They make your bum look sooo small!" "You can't not buy jeans that look that good on you, can you?". I squirmed in my 29 dollar cargo pants.

Afterwards, she showed no sign of post-purchase depression. We had a coffee. She only had one question to ask. "Do you think buying jeans in the moll shop makes me a moll?"

If this post makes no sense, don't blame me. I'm on my eighth codral day tablet for the day. I know you don't care.

ISE4 Pal!! Please don't stress. Surface mail may take three months from the US (I'm presuming that's where you are). Relax. It will come. And when it does, I'll email you straight away. Hakuna Matata.

Time keeps on slipping slipping slipping ....

17 Jun 2007

So where did last week go? Beats me.

The weather here has been diabolical. People have died. There's been a landslide on Mt Keira, floods in the Hunter, and a tanker washed up on the beach in Newcastle in the five metre swells. I watched a documentary on oil called CRUDE recently - such a chilling prediction about the future ... this wild weather could be a symptom ... truly frightening ...

So I was very pleasantly suprised to find the sun shining this morning when I awoke, we had to get some fresh air so we took the children on a huge adventure - about two minutes drive from my place. The Wollongong Botanic Gardens.

When we left home there was masses of photogenic filtered afternoon sunlight on the lawn and grounds. As soon as I got out of the car this happened:

(look how the spires on the cactus have bowed down in the wind - this picture is taken with the camera parallel to the ground) so I had to make do with cloudy light.

I couldn't stop taking pictures of the roses. I know they're not perfect blooms but considering the deluge they've survived in the past week it's a wonder they've got any petals left at all.

My favourite was this faded lilac colour, almost grey really, very vintage looking.

There were bridges to be crossed.

And a scarf to be photographed in it's natural habitat. Here's my most recent quickie project, a (you guessed it) feather and fan scarf in a colourway called painted desert. Man I love this colour - can you beleive how much is looks like the scoria on the ground?

Can you see I conducted a little experiment with this yarn? For five repeats towards the ends of the scarf I separated the two strands, the mohair on it's own and then the rayon boucle on it's own. The rayon boucle looks so much like platinum leaf when knitted by itself - so lustrous. Alhtough methinks this stuff may classify as novelty yarn - what do you think?

I prefer to knit this pattern in two pieces and graft down the centre otherwise the scalloped edge only happens on one side - this lack of symmetry would be untenable in my book. Because I only had one hank of this yarn I made it quite narrow, with only 24 stitches and 4 k2togs instead of the usual 3.

On our way out, Blair found a fairy village. All the fairies must have been hiding, for we could only see their houses.

So that was it. I'll leave you with this, who doesn't love a good strelitzia - found on the front lawn of every fifties fibro on the eastern seaboard?


Jussi - I cried all the way thru Leaving Las Vegas too, my heart was broken badly from a boyfriend once because of the wretched drink - alcoholism is such a strong addiction and such a waste.

Meg - GOLD!! I have oft wanted a camera crew to come down and do a doco on the extended family of British gypsies who live on the park - they must be third or fourth generation of this lifestyle - their accents haven't changed for they don't mingle too much with mainstream society - they have a LOT of cash - are illiterate - so interesting a lifestyle. Not to mention the permanent van owners, the grey nomads, the backpackers, the transient workers - it's an amazing cross section of society we get.

BTW - I will keep you informed. I don't actually think he's going to die in situ on the park (although it happens more often than you might think) - but I do think that things are going to get worse for him - he's not at 'rock bottom' yet - but I'm sure he can smell it from where he is. Poor bastard.

Leaving Las Vegas

16 Jun 2007

Have you seen that movie with Nicholas Cage in it?

I work on reception in a tourist (caravan) park. There is a man staying in one of the self contained cabins, he's been there for a few weeks. He is reasonably young, and is quite obviously a very serious alcoholic. He has displayed some very erratic behaviour during his stay; for example:

Last Tuesday night he went out on the lash - he drove there. Many hours later, he managed to find his way back to the cabin (without the car) to sleep it off. When he awoke the next day he assumed his car had been stolen, so he went out and bought another car. Subsequently his first car showed up. Now he is staying alone in a self contained cabin with two cars. Both of which he is too drunk to drive.

A few days ago, when he came into the office I almost died from the fumes coming off him, even though he was showered and reasonably well dressed. He noticed that I was knitting, accused it of being crocheting and then managed a 'knit one purl one' quip on his way out the door.

Yesterday he asked me to type a letter for him, and his hands shook so badly he could barely find the handwritten sheet in the pile of documents he had in his hands. It was a submission for the start up of a tourist activity business in our region. I typed it for him, offering him the same polite friendliness I do to all the customers. During the 20 minutes or so it took me (at 9am in the morning) he surrepticiously sipped from a small plastic bottle of 'juice'. He insisted I take ten bucks for my efforts.

He is supposed to leave next Tuesday. I don't have a shift now until 28th June. I feel very sorry for him, although everyone else on the park can't wait till he goes. I wonder how he's going to leave in two cars?

13 Jun 2007

So, time to join something else - like the Mystery Stole 3. I joined within 12 hours of the site being up and I was number 568 or something. I've done a few of the mystery knits so far, enjoyed all of them and subsequently didn't have to buy the patterns! The first two were Leda's Dream (which I didn't actually knit, it was before I started lace knitting) and Sherezade (the one I accidentally
dyed dayglo orange
, now happily residing with Donni). This one has beads.

As usual, I'll be all take and no give on this knitalong, I'm way too much of a grumpy cynical sourpuss to bear the chat on the site - the first pattern hint is released on the 29th June (that's more than two weeks away people) and already there are literally hundreds of meaningless posts about yarn choice, yarn colours, crochet hook size possibilities, bead colours - for heaven's sake we haven't even seen the first part of the pattern yet!

I've been asked by Jae to knit a coloured sample of this amazing shawl - at first she mentioned sea silk - I nearly died - but we've settled on laines du nord silk in a deep teal. Ooh I can't wait to get this started. (I hope she doesn't mind I borrowed her image.)

But right now, as soon as I hit publish, I'm off to scour the new knitty!


Very Rare and Very Precious

11 Jun 2007

I don't normally do this.

But, there's a blogger out there who is going to be feeling under the weather for a while due to side effects from a drug she knows she has to take. Imagine looking at a handful of pills knowing how bad they're going to make you feel and having no choice but to take them anyway. For those of you with chronic illnesses, you'll know, but for the rest of us lucky ones ...

You know who she is. She'll be the one who has something positive to say on almost all of your posts - I see her wonderful comments almost everywhere I go on the net.

She's the one who has the most delicious sense of humour, the most nuttily named friends and blog posts, the most beautiful well cared-for dogs and the greeniest snicket you'll ever see.

Who else could call a sock Britney having decided it must have had a breakdown?

She never dwells on her illness, whatever it may be, hardly ever mentions it actually. What class.

Who else but Cindy 2paw? If there's one thing I can say about you Cindy, it's that I can always rely on you to 'get' what I'm trying to say, and from what I see you appear to 'get' everyone else too.

You're special, and I'd like to say here that I hope you don't feel too shit-house on those pills and that they do their job and make you well again.

Girl you'll be a woman soon

10 Jun 2007

If you look on my left sidebar under 'knitting alone' you will see that I've finished all but one of the projects on that list.

Which may lead you to conclude that the only wip I have on the needles is the ROE shawl.

Not so at all:

Here's the state of my current WIP's (EXCLUDING the ROE shawl)

Don't you dare call this a ripple blanket! When I made mum's feather and fan scarf, I kind of got hypnotised by the pattern. So, with some very soft merino from that EVIL PLACE, a blanket for Blair's bed was started. I'm liking how this one is turning out.

I found it! It was behind the gas heater which had been put away in the cupboard earlier this year. See how it's grown. This is a backstop project, for times when it's after midnight and I'm too tired to start something new.

Eunny Jang's print o the wave stole. I seem to have misplaced the other ball of purple ksh required to finish this - I'll have to buy some more.

The beginnings of a black peacock feathers shawl in belisa cashmere obtained from the Royal Easter Show. No deadline here, as long as it's done for the exhibition next year I'll be happy.

Not too shabby, not too daunting. None of these projects have any deadlines, they're happy enough to be backstop projects.

Which is just as well, because they're about to get usurped by a knit so inspiring, so beautiful, so incredibly cool that it will change the way you think about knitting.

Or something like that.


Romelda: I'm very glad your son enjoyed his trip in Australia. With the activities I've seen in Cape Tribulation I'd say he'd have had a hard time not to, I beleive it to be all beer and skittles up there. Tell him sorry about the storms we've had the past few days in NSW, and that I hope he didn't go surfing in that five metre ground swell. Also, if he might try and get to see the oil tanker that's run aground on the beach in Newcastle - that's not something that happens every day.

Rowan Patti

I'm so sorry. It took me longer to sew this sucker up than I thought it would. This is because the sewing up involved

a) knitting the button bands
b) knitting the collar

However, here she is done.

Project Specifications

Pattern: Patti by Rowan from Rowan collection 1
Yarn: 11 Balls Jo Sharp Silkroad Tweed DK in 'magnolia' - from the Wool Inn in Penrith.
Modifications: None. Except maybe I lost interest in the collar and cast off a tad early.

Notes: I made the biggest size, it is possibly a bit big for me.

Also, the weight of the pleats pull the garter row down a bit and make it a bit uneven - this is possibly the yarn substitution. The yarn called for is Rowan Felted Tweed which I haven't seen but I imagine knits a bit of a thicker fabric with a bit more structure.

I think I might reinforce this with a strip of thick velvet ribbon on the inside (which will look nice anyway).

Please excuse the masking tape and newspaper in the background, for guess what!!?? The painting weekend has arrived - and here are the first works in progress shots.

See the broken light? That is the first disaster caused by he who shall not be named throwing an ugg boot over his shoulder as an act of humour. It's such a shame we'll have to replace that light fitting, I loved it so much (note dripping sarcasm)..
I didn't get angry with him of course. I just brought it to his attention that any of these would be suitable replacements.

On comments

4 Jun 2007

To Anonymous from last post: who are you? And why should I stop eating? Exactly how drunk were you when you wrote these comments? My email is daly04atbigponddotnetdotau - it better be funny. Reveal youself instantly.

Rose Red - my Anonymous commenter wants me to tell you something, I guess if you have a look at the comments on my previous post he/she can tell you themselves.

In America, they have the Grand Canyon. I saw it once, and yep, it is a grand canyon.

Where I live, I have the Grand Pacific Ocean. I see it every day, and it's just as grand.

(Hi Jussi, I can see you waving from here!)

Alan and I celebrated our ten year wedding anniversary on the weekend.

Friday night was a special rare treat, Alan came home early from work and all four of us settled in on the sofa for a night of pizza and kids movies (Happy Feet and Night at the Museum). For those of you lucky enough to be able to do this every night I envy you. I can't remember the last time my husband was home from work in daylight hours - it happens maybe ten times a year tops.

Anyhow, enough boo hoo is me, on Saturday night we went out for dinner. Have a look at the divine menu here. I had the lobster boudin, and the lamb. Alan had the quail and the snapper. I'm so glad he didn't have the rabbit as I wouldn't have coped too well with that I don't think.

The sommelier suggested a nice pinot, I found it a bit acidic for the subtlety of the food, perhaps a softer shiraz would have been nicer, but we deferred to her better judgement at our peril.

For afters we shared the cheese and the creme brulee, the cheese was appropriately stinky and the brulee top was crunchy and slightly bitter - washed down with TWO glasses of delicious french sauternes (at $10 each for a small glass it was about a dollar a mouthful but worth every penny). Bliss bliss bliss. We even managed to find something to talk about other than the children, difficult for anyone after ten years of marital blah.

Yesterday mum and dad took the kids to Symbio wildlife park. We met them up there after a luxurious sleep-in and a scrambled egg on toast breakfast. It was a crisp warm and perfectly clear day - gorgeous. I took some obligatory photos of the wildlife.

I find it funny that I've probably taken a hundred photos of this old koala over the years, and as for that corella - I swear he's the same one that bit me on the finger when I was ten. I believe he recognised me, can't you see the glint in his evil eye?

And on that note, I shall bid you adieu. I am off to sew up the pieces of the patti cardigan right now - wish me luck. I'm excited ... this garment may even work.


(Symbio would be a good place for a family blogger meet, everyone could bring their kids and other halves if they have them - eveyone has a good day then - and we could picnic on the grass and get to know one another in a lovely relaxed setting - being kind of halfway ish between this neck of the woods and Sydney it is quite convenient - any takers?)

My friend and I were discussing marriage at the school last week - she said 'It's a bit like eating chicken every night isn't it?" Funniest thing I've heard in a long while that. For indeed, it is exactly like eating chicken every night after a while. I guess the secret is to use a lot of different sauces.

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