Autumn Citron and Blue Miami Beach Shawls

Another week of work is finished. It’s been a very overcast, rainy and bleak day in Brisbane today and the weekend looks like it will be the same so it’ll be ideal weather for knitting! Tomorrow I’m off to do some more yarn bombing and straight after that it’s off to Knit and Knatter which I am so looking forward to.

At one stage I seemed to be knitting socks and more socks and now I’m knitting shawls and more shawls!

This Citron Shawl is my second using this pattern (and I’ve recently started my third!).

Autumn Citron 01

I love this pattern as it’s easy to follow and easy to knit. I would point out however that there is NO increasing when knitting rows 3-5 and 7-11. I get caught out every time!! If you’re going to knit this pattern maybe it would be an idea to write these words beside these rows. This shawl sits beautifully on my shoulders.

Autumn Citron 02

The yarn used for this shawl is the extra ball I had specially dyed by Angela from Shorn Fibers. It’s called Tuff Sock and is an 80% merino / 20% nylon yarn. I hit a bit of a snag as I reached the bottom of the shawl as I was fast running out of yarn. A quick visit to my stash room and I found some left over Madelinetosh Tosh Merino Light which is a 100% merino yarn. I had originally used this yarn for my Wholehearted Shawl and luckily there was enough left over and I think the paler green edging matches perfectly.

Shorn Fibers Autumn Gradient 3

Madelinetosh-65 TML Grasshopper

The shawl reminds me of those jellied citrus sweets…

Citrus image 02-tile

Autumn Citron 06

For a bit of a change I added a picot edging. I love a picot edge; it takes a while to complete but does look effective and is great for using up surplus yarn if you have it.

Autumn Citron 09

My Miami Beach Shawl turned out perfectly especially using this blue yarn…

Miami Beach Shawl 01

which is Cleckheaton Country 8ply in this unusually bright blue colour.

Cleckheaton Country Blue 02

The shawl has a beautiful lace edging…

Miami Beach Shawl 06

Both shawls are easy knits as there’s a lot of plain garter stitch.

Miami Beach Shawl 02

 

Miami Beach Shawl 07

The stitch definition is beautiful!

Miami Beach Shawl 05

I hope you’ve got some inspiration from these two patterns.

Until next time…

Melanie

 

Beautiful colours in nature and in yarn!

I love colour particularly autumn colours. I love their rich warm hues and their association with nature. I also love bright colours in particular oranges and yellows. So when my son unexpectedly presented me with the most beautiful gift of flowers I was ecstatic. He told me he had no idea what colours to get me so just selected what he thought looked nice. He certainly picked the right ones don’t you think?

Flowers from Richard 01

Flowers from Richard 15

Mother Nature has created some truly gorgeous colours and no doubt this is where a lot of artisan yarn dyers get their creative ideas from.

Flowers from Richard 17

I have taken so many pictures of these flowers as I don’t want to ever forget their beauty and who gave them to me.

Flowers from Richard 19

Flowers from Richard 04

Which leads me to one of my latest knitted garments. The Age of Brass and Steam Kerchief is a pattern I’ve had for ages and which I keep looking at and then move on to another pattern. However, with my recent Shorn Fibers‘ yarn purchases I knew straight away what yarn I could use with this pattern.

Age of Brass Steam 01

I was after a pattern that wasn’t too fussy so it could show off the beautiful colours that Angela has captured in this colourway called Woodland Pixie.

Age of Brass Steam 06

The colours remind me of a lovely balmy Autumn day with all the different shades of orange the leaves turn.

Age of Brass Steam 02

To utilise the whole skein of yarn I added an additional K2, YO, K to last 2 sts, YO, K2 row and then added a picot bind off to add a bit of a wow factor to the kerchief.

Age of Brass Steam 10

The yarn is Shorn Fibers Merino Superwash DK (115g per skein!). I love, love, love all the autumn shades in this skein.

Shorn Fibers Merino DK Woodland Pixie 03

I actually started this kerchief on the day I received the yarn as I was so enchanted with it.

Age of Brass Steam 03

Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful….

Age of Brass Steam 07

Age of Brass Steam 04

Age of Brass Steam 05

I can’t wait to find patterns that will suit the other yarns I purchased from Shorn Fibers.

Here’s a very colourful mosaic of my beautiful flowers…

Flowers from Richard 01-tile

We’re in for a wet and cool weekend in Brisbane so I’m going to settle into some knitting, spinning and reading and I’ll be toasty warm wearing my hand knitted socks and a lovely warm scarf :-)

Until next time…

Melanie

 

A Wonderful Holiday With Lots of Yarning!

My holiday has now come to a close for this year. I am so blessed to have been able to spend two weeks in one of the most beautiful places in the country….Noosaville on the Sunshine Coast and the remaining time in the wonderful bayside suburb where I live.

I’ve completed lots of projects. Here is a few of them…

Age of Brass Steam 01-tile

Walked up to The Point a few mornings with my backpack and book and settled in at the coffee shop for a relaxing read…

Coffee at the Point 01

Coffee at the Point 02

Imagine looking at this every day!

Cleveland Point 11-8-14 07

There is nothing like living right beside the water. I love it! It must have something to do with my Zodiac sign – Aquarius – the water bearer. I am only a few minutes walk away from this…

Cleveland Point 11-8-14 01

What bliss.

Cleveland Point 11-8-14 02

When I walk to Cleveland Point after work in the summer, I sit here and watch the water and just zen out.

Cleveland Point 11-8-14 05

Cleveland Point 11-8-14 08

Cleveland Point 11-8-14 10

Mother nature at her best! What wonderful shades of blue!

Cleveland Point 11-8-14 14

Cleveland Point 11-8-14 13

Cleveland Point 11-8-14 11

There are great places for families to have picnics or barbeques. Plus there’s plenty of play equipment for the kids…

DSC06021

And we even have Queensland’s oldest Banyan Tree…

DSC06025

DSC06023

And on the way home from coffee I spotted this little cluster of beautiful mauve flowers…

DSC06043

And, of course, I found a yarn store in Noosaville called Sheep Thrills…

Sheep Thrills 08 24-7-14

And it wouldn’t be a regular blog post if I didn’t share some yarn purchases with you. I bought these last week at Spotlight…

Six balls of Moda Vera Hue which is a 70% acrylic / 30% wool bulky / 12 ply yarn.

Moda Vera Hue 01

Five balls of Moda Vera Dalmatian in this burgundy colourway. This yarn is an 82% acrylic / 18% nylon bulky / 12 ply.

Moda Vera Dalmatian Burgundy 01

And three balls in the grey colourway…

Moda Vera Dalmatian Grey 01

And lastly, two reels of this beautiful variegated green rayon which I hope to use to ply with some green merino I am yet to spin…

Green Rayon 01

Green Rayon 02-tile

And of course, I did quite a bit of spinning. This is what I’ve recently started spinning. Some ‘mongrel’ (I’m assuming this means a mixture of fibre; I bought it at the recent Redlands Spinners & Weavers Open Day). I’m spinning it on my Crofter wheel which I haven’t used to date and I must say I’m loving it!!!

Mongrel 01

It’s mainly a grey colour with little flecks of other bits and pieces in it.

Mongrel 02

Mongrel 03

As I close I would like to welcome all the new followers to my blog. Thank you so much for following my yarn adventures :-) I can always be contacted via the ‘Contact Me’ page along the top banner of my blog page. Please, please leave any comments as I reply to each and every comment left. I love the interaction this blog provides. Let me know what else you’d like me to blog about too.

Until next time…

Melanie

BTW, On the right hand side of the home page of my blog there are lots of interesting links. I’m not sure when you receive my weekly posts whether you see these links. If not, what you can do is click on the Home button which is at the top left hand side of the page. This will take you to the home page where you can view all the links plus the most recent post. One link also takes you directly to my Ravelry home page.

Leaves on the Line Shawl

If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you’ll know that I’ve used quite a lot of Susan Ashcroft’s patterns for scarves. Susan’s Ravelry name is stitchnerd. The first one was my Samothrace Wings Scarf, followed by another Samothrace Wings Scarf in a gorgeous Zen Yarn Garden yarn, followed by the Starry Night Cable Bias Scarf, the Serengeti Cable Bias Scarf, the Leafy Bias ScarfChameleon Bias Scarf and the Tangerine Yolo Shawl. You could almost say I’m addicted to Susan’s patterns!

The wonderful Susan offered me any one of her patterns to select from (including any ebook). I had been eyeing off the Leaves, Leaves, Leaves ebook for a while so I selected it. This stunning pattern is Leaves on the Line.

Leaves on Leaves 01

As with all Susan’s patterns I’ve made to date, there’s always quite a bit of garter stitch which helps your project to grow faster by the minute.

Leaves on Leaves 03

Here is the shawl in all its glory…

Leaves on Leaves 04

I am so happy with the finished shawl. It sits beautifully and the match between the pattern and the yarn is perfect.

Leaves on Leaves 07

The yarn I used is Shorn FibersTuff Sock which is Blue Faced Leicester nylon fingering / 4ply yarn and the colourway is Urchin.

Shorn Fibers Urchin 04

Leaves on Leaves 12

The delicate leaf edging is simply beautiful and adds a wonderful touch to the shawl.

Leaves on Leaves 10

I have worn this shawl to work and it is beautifully soft around my neck.

Leaves on Leaves 08

The other two patterns in the ebook are Leaf Loop and Leaves in a Line. The latter pattern is made using Schoppel-Wolle Crazy Zauberball and I have a few balls of this yarn so I might even use one of them.

I had a wonderful time at my local Knit and Knatter gathering yesterday. We laughed so much which is so good for the soul.

I’m off to do some spinning now!

Until next time…

Melanie

My 2014 Sock Yarn Club Goodies

Yesterday I received my final instalment in the Dyed By Hand Yarns‘ Sock Yarn Club. The theme for 2014 was Australia II – colours inspired by the ocean, sea, sails and coastlines.

Two skeins of sock yarn were posted out in the last week in March, May and July and the yarns included were 2 x Tough Stocking, 1 x Mother’s Love, 1 x Big Blue Stocking, 1 x Silk Stocking and 1 x Blue Chip Stocking.

Each skein of yarn was dyed in a colour inspired by something Australian. These colours are exclusive to yarn club members for 12 months. Custom dyeing of these colours on any yarn base may be ordered by yarn club members for the duration of the club.

# 1 is called Surf Life Saving and is dyed on Tough Stocking which is a 75% merino / 25% nylon yarn. This colourway is incredibly eye-catching and really depicts the Aussie surf life saving colours of the red and yellow flag against the blue ocean and sky. Very vivid indeed.

DBHY Surf Life Saving 06-tile

# 2 is called Blue Ringed Octopus and is also dyed on Tough Stocking. The blue-ringed octopuses are three (or perhaps four) octopus species that live in tide pools and coral reefs in the Pacific and Indian Oceans, from Japan to Australia (mainly around southern New South Wales and South Australia, and northern Western Australia). Despite their small size and relatively docile nature, they can prove a danger to humans. They can be recognised by their characteristic blue and black rings and yellowish skin. When the octopus is agitated, the brown patches darken dramatically, and iridescent blue rings or clumps of rings appear and pulsate within the maculae. It’s hard to believe that something so beautiful can be so dangerous.

DBHY Blue Ringed Octopus 03-tile

# 3 is called Monkey Mia and is dyed on Mother’s Love which is an 80% merino / 10% cashmere / 10% nylon yarn. Monkey Mia is a popular tourist destination located about 900 km north of Perth, Western Australia. The reserve is 25 km northeast of the town of Denham in the Shark Bay Marine Park and World Heritage Site.

The main attraction is the bottlenose dolphins that have been coming close to shore for more than fifty years. The beautiful blue colours of the ocean are captured so well in this yarn.

DBHY Mothers Love Monkey Mia 04-tile

# 4 is called Purple Sea Urchin and is dyed on Blue Chip Stocking which is a 70% merino / 20% silk  / 10% cashmere yarn. Purple Sea Urchins are found in southern Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia. They live on intertidal rocky shores and in coastal waters to a depth of 35 metres. In order to gain protection from predators and the elements, they cluster together and use their sharp spines to burrow into the rock. They normally grow to a diameter of about 4 inches and may live as long as 70 years.

Wow! The colours in the yarn are definitely a true indication of the colours in the Purple Sea Urchin.

DBHY Blue Chip Purple Sea Urchin 04-tile

# 5 is called Gorgons Head Coral and is dyed on Silk Stocking which is 50% merino / 50% silk yarn.

A four-week expedition to explore the deep ocean south-west of Tasmania in 2008 revealed new species of animals and more evidence of impacts of increasing carbon dioxide on deep-sea corals. A bright red, undescribed species of shell-less coral, called an anthomastid or gorgons-head coral was discovered at 1700 metres deep at the Cascade Plateau, off south-east Tasmania.

This also happens to be one of my favourite colours. Plus the 50% silk in this yarn makes it feel lovely and soft.

DBHY Silk Stocking Gorgons Head Coral 02-tile

And lastly, # 6 is called Bass Strait and is dyed on Big Blue Stocking which is 100% wool. Bass Strait is a sea strait separating Tasmania from the Australian mainland, specifically the state of Victoria.

What a wonderful rich blue colour typical of the deep blue sea.

DBHY Blue Chip Bass Strait 02-tile

Now my next challenge is to assign patterns to each of these gorgeous yarns. What would you make with each one?

Until next time…

Melanie

 

Sunday Sunrise Shawl

The colour of this shawl initially caught my eye as I was searching through Ravelry. I had exactly the right yarn in mind to use for the Sunday Sunrise Shawl so it was packed along with lots of other projects on my recent visit to Noosaville.

I’ve had to wait until I arrived back home before I could block the shawl as I didn’t pack all my blocking equipment (my car was full enough as it was with knitting projects and my spinning wheel!)

I did, however, take a photo of the shawl before blocking…

Sunday Sunrise Shawl 02

And after blocking…

Sunday Sunrise Shawl 07

And that’s the difference that blocking makes, to my friends who have asked ‘what is blocking?’ and ‘why do you do it?’. Your garment can practically double in size!

Sunday Sunrise Shawl 03Sunday Sunrise Shawl 06

The yarn I used is Pumpkin Pie Spice from Zen Yarn Garden which is dyed on Serenity 20. It’s a 70% merino / 20% cashmere /10% nylon 4ply / fingering yarn and is beautifully soft and comfy.

Zen Yarn Garden Pumpkin Pie Spice 04

Sunday Sunrise Shawl 08

Sunday Sunrise Shawl 10This pattern has gorgeous stitch definition in it.

Sunday Sunrise Shawl 11

What I love about these crescent shaped shawls is how easily and comfortably they sit on your shoulders without slipping off.

Sunday Sunrise Shawl 04

Sunday Sunrise Shawl 05

That’s it for now. I’ve spent most of this week blocking all the shawls and scarves I made while away so you’ll be seeing them over the next few weeks.

Until next time…

Melanie

Home Sweet Home!

Going away on holidays is lots of fun but coming home is always a treat too. There’s nothing like sleeping in your own bed, with your own pillow and having everything on hand rather than rummaging through bags and suitcases looking for something you forgot to pack!

I arrived home on Saturday but made sure I had another visit to Sheep Thrills at Noosaville on the Friday morning for some social knitting and yes you guessed it….I had to buy some more yarn!!!! Well it is going to be about a year before I get back there. Picked up another Ella Rae Merino Lace in these lovely earthy colours…

Ella Rae Merino Lace Earthy

Plus this stunning Marigold Silk

Marigold Silk Green

Marigold Silk Orange

Isn’t this one an eye opener?

Marigold Silk Variegated

All three together make rather a statement don’t they?

Marigold Silk

I might add that all of the above four yarns only cost me $20 each. Yes, the yarn at Sheep Thrills is very reasonably priced.

When I got home I had a couple of parcels waiting for me. Yes….I love a surprise! The first parcel held two skeins of the tenth offering in the Zen Yarn Garden ART WALK Series that features a painting by Andy Warhol entitled “Ice Cream Dessert“. From one medium to the next, artists express their use of colour. Inspired by Picasso, Zen Yarn Garden’s dyer has successfully captured the vividness and subtlety of the colours of the painting.

Zen Yarn Garden Ice Cream Dessert 05

Andy Warhol’s pioneering Pop Art defined a decade and a culture, distinguishing him as one of the most influential, creative and prolific artists of the 20th century. Originally the most sought-after commercial artist in New York, Warhol (1923 – 1987) is most known for his multiple images of Campbell’s Soup cans, Coke bottles, dollar bills and celebrities, which exalted the beauty within ordinary objects and familiar images. Working out of a studio called The Factory, he invented the silkscreening process which enabled him to mass produce a single image in his signature style. Warhol was also a talented filmmaker, music producer, commercial illustrator, author and magazine publisher. [quoted from Art.com]

Zen Yarn Garden Ice Cream Dessert painting

The yarn is Serenity Silk Single which is a 75% superwash merino / 15% cashmere / 10% silk and contains 430 yards / 100g (fingering single ply). Here’s a picture from Zen Yarn Garden’s website…

Zen Garden Ice Cream Dessert 04

The second parcel contained two skeins of beautifully dyed pure silk laceweight from Ms Gussett…

Ms Gussett Fresh Shoot Silk

It is simply divine…

Ms Gussett Tropical Fruit Silk

And then this morning there was ANOTHER parcel delivery! I forgot that while I was at Noosaville, Angela from Shorn Fibers released an Etsy update and posted it on her Facebook page. I, of course, had to have a look. Oh my goodness, these yarns are to die for!!!

Two skeins of Shorn Fibers Merino Superwash DK (115g per skein!). This colourway is Anaitis…

Shorn Fibers Anaitis 01

One skein of Shorn Fibers MCN 435 Sock which is an 80% superwash merino / 10% cashmere / 10% nylon yarn. This colourway is Wood Elf…

Shorn Fibers Wood Elf 04

One skein of Shorn Fibers Merino Superwash DK (115g per skein!). This colourway is Woodland Pixie…

Shorn Fibers Merino DK Woodland Pixie 03

Two skeins of Shorn Fibers Premium Sock which is a 75% superwash merino / 25% nylon yarn. This colourway is Agamede…

Shorn Fibers Agamede 04

And lastly, two skeins of Shorn Fibers Silky Fingering which is a 50% superwash merino / 50% silk yarn and it is so beautifully soft and silky. This colourway is Woodland Pixie…

Shorn Fibers Silky Fingering Woodland Pixie 03

I have no idea yet what I will knit with these yarns but just could not resist their beautiful colours. The right pattern will come along I know.

While I was at Eumundi Markets last Wednesday, I also picked up these two gloriously soft alpaca teddy bears…

Alpaca Teddies 01

 

And these three lightweight scarves…

Scarves 03

Scarves 04

Scarves 05

And to close off…this morning I ducked into a newly opened cheap shop in my area and found these three sheep. I’m assuming they’re sheep although they do have rather ‘googly’ eyes don’t they?

Three sheep

Plus these two boxes of tissues. They’re not the softest tissues so I only use them when I’m oiling my spinning wheels to catch the drips. And can you guess why I buy these particular boxes?

Tissue Box 01

Yes, I know…I’m a bit unusual aren’t I? I mean, I’m living in a home that is being overrun by spinning wheels, yarn and stuffed sheep!!!!!!!!!!!

Until next time…

Melanie

BTW, On the right hand side of the home page of my blog there are lots of interesting links. I’m not sure when you receive my weekly posts whether you see these links. If not, what you can do is click on the Home button which is at the top left hand side of the page. This will take you to the home page where you can view all the links plus the most recent post. One link also takes you directly to my Ravelry home page.

 

Shorn Fibers Anaitis 02-tile