New Zealand Sheep Haul!

Let me first say how saddened I was to hear of the earthquakes in New Zealand this month. They occurred days after I returned home from a wonderful 14 day cruise around that beautiful country. I do wish everyone in those affected areas all the best Aussie luck I can send Please be safe!

Although my holiday was mainly a cruise, we did stop at six lovely cities and towns so of course, I managed to add to my collection of all things sheep!

This little alpaca caught my eye and he’s the first alpaca in my collection 🙂

alpaca-toyAnd my first brown sheep!
brown-sheepWho could resist that cute face 🙂
sheep-01Another apron to add to my collection.
sheep-apronI haven’t done any cross stitch for eons so I’m going to have to start so I can complete these cute little bookmarks.
sheep-book-marksThese cute plastic cups couldn’t be left behind!
sheep-kids-cupsAnd of course, I had to add to my sheep mug collection 🙂
sheep-mug-01
sheep-mug-02This one is quite unusual.
sheep-mug-03
sheep-mug-04This little quartet of sheep is quite unusual and quite small so it was easy to pack (and buy!)
sheep-ornamentA rather unusual vinyl holdall with a zip top.
sheep-plastic-zip-caseI found these microwave/oven mitts at a market in The Octagon in Dunedin.
sheep-pot-holdersSalt and pepper shakers!
sheep-salt-and-pepper-shakers-01
sheep-salt-and-pepper-shakers-02A little All Blacks supporter 🙂
all-blacks-sheepI picked up these salt and pepper shakers in a one day sale on board the Sea Princess. They were the only ones there so I literally grabbed them!
sheep-salt-and-pepper-shakers-03Sheep paper serviettes…..who’d have thought!!
sheep-serviettesAs if I need more socks!
sheep-socksMore goodies from the market in The Octagon in Dunedin.
sheep-towels-01I use these hanging hand towels in the kitchen every day!
sheep-towels-02Lots of souvenirs, some of which I kept and some were given to friends.
souvenirs-01
souvenirs-02
souvenirs-03I now have a huge collection of sheep tea towels.
tea-towel-01I’d love to make some project bags but I’m not the best at sewing.
tea-towel-02There was such a huge variety to select from.
tea-towel-03
tea-towel-04This one matches my new apron.
tea-towel-05
tea-towel-06
tea-towel-07Didn’t I get a great selection?
tea-towel-08
tea-towel-09And this is how I felt after each day’s shopping 🙂
two-sleepy-sheepThe scary thing is this isn’t all I bought. There are more mugs and bits and pieces which I haven’t gotten around to photographing but the good news is that I’ve just about found a home for everything 🙂

I think I need to ease up on sheep stuff for a while by keeping away from the second hand shops I normally visit.

I wonder how long those good intentions will last 🙂

Until next time…

Melanie

Holiday Opp Shopping!

Who’d have thought I’d go on holidays and manage to discover a whole lot of Opp shops in the area! I visited my sister in Mooloolaba and on the way home I stopped at Maroochydore as I’d discovered there’s a long stretch of Opp shops along Aerodrome Road. I cleaned them out of toy sheep!

This magnificent ram looks brand new and was only $4.50!

Noosaville sheep 01 Noosaville sheep 02 Noosaville sheep 03 Noosaville sheep 04These four sheep were discovered in Noosaville.

Noosaville 3 sheep Noosaville sheep 05c

And I found this little one in the Noosaville newsagent.

Noosaville sheep bought

Wow! where am I going to put them all when I get home???

Noosaville sheep 06And of course I also managed to pick up these four sheep mugs all at the same Opp shop in Tewantin.

Noosaville sheep mugs 01And this one from Maroochydore.

NZ sheep mugPlus these two little knick knacks. I think this little sheep would have resided in the kitchen with maybe some utensil resting in that hole??

Kitchen sheep 01Not sure what this little egg cup shape item would be used for but it looks cute 🙂

Egg cup 02I also visited the Eumundi Markets last Wednesday, which is a must for anyone visiting the area and found a stall filled with bags. There were hundreds of them. I asked the owner if he had any sheep bags and this is what I left with.

Sheep bag vinyl 02

It’s rather large and made from vinyl so is water repellent to a certain degree. I was quite exhausted after this purchase so I grabbed a coffee and a couple of sinful jam donuts 🙂

Sheep bag vinyl

And totally not related to sheep, I picked up these two pairs of shoes. I have more of these at home in different colours so I was really happy to pick up these ones. They are so comfy!

Beige shoes Navy shoesI’ve also been doing lots of knitting but for some reason I’m stuck on knitting fingerless mitts and haven’t touched any other projects. I’m also thinking about selling some of my knits through my MelsNattyKnits Facebook page. Once I’m home I’ll start sorting out what to sell.

I’ll leave you with a couple of my everyday views at Noosaville.

Pelican 16=7=16

Reading and coffee 12-7-16

DSC09404Until next time…

Melanie

Knitting News from Noosaville

I’m now enjoying my fourth day of holidays and you could say I am completely relaxed. That’s what Noosaville is all about: relaxation, no stress, slow living, doing what I feel like and when I want to, knitting, walking, drinking coffee, meeting friends, eating lots and just being happy!

How can you not be happy when this is your view every day?

Noosa River 9-7-16I arrived on the Saturday around lunch time and was lucky to get the keys to my unit straight away so I unloaded my car and then headed off to the grocery store to stock up for the next week or so.

On Sunday, I met some friends for a coffee and lunch and then met some more friends along the banks of the Noosa River. It was so enjoyable chatting and having a drink of wine. On the way home to my unit I spotted this lone pelican on the river.

Pelican 10-7-16Yesterday, I did a bit of walking around to combat all the food I’ve already started eating!!

Today I spent about four hours sitting on the banks of the river reading and knitting. It was forecast to be a warmer day today despite the fact we’re in the middle of winter. However, under the shade of the tree I was sitting under it was quite cool and there was a strong breeze. Luckily I had brought a poncho with me so I was quite toasty and warm 🙂

Knitting on the river bank 12-7-16And then I took a walk along the esplanade and had a coffee and read some more 🙂 I’m reading Linwood Barclay‘s latest novel ‘Far From True’. He’s one of my favourite authors.

Reading and coffee 12-7-16Since I’ve been here I’ve made a pair of fingerless mitts.

Cosy Thermal Mitts Grey 05And this morning I completed the first in another pair!

Good Time Mitts Cosy Naturals 01I’ll give you more details in a later post. Suffice to say, I made my first pair of fingerless mitts about three weeks ago and since then I’ve completed about 10 pairs!!

Tomorrow I am off to meet with some of the spinners and knitters at Pomona which I am looking forward to.

Until next time…

Melanie

A Mini Getaway

I’ve just come home from a four day mini getaway in the Redcliffe area which is north of Brisbane.  Last Monday and Tuesday I attended beginner/advanced weaving workshops where I learned quite a few new techniques so I can now add a bit more interest to my weaving projects. If you live in the Brisbane area, I would highly recommended these workshops. Lindy is an Ashford agent and knows all about spinning, weaving, knitting and a multitude of other crafts. She holds these workshops regularly so you can send her an email to book a spot.

We each made a sampler over the two days which displayed all the different techniques.

Weaving sampler scarf

Not the best colours to mix and match but as it’s just a sampler and not for wearing I am happy with the results 🙂

As an aside, my son visited me last weekend and I showed him some of my woven scarves when he asked whether I could make a man’s one for him. Now, that was the last thing I’d expected to come out of his mouth. I just didn’t think he’d want to wear a scarf. So I said to him ‘what about this grey one with the black stripe’ and he immediately put it on and claimed it. I gave him strict instructions about hand washing the scarf too 🙂

Richard 17-4-16 with Mums scarfI stayed in a motel in Margate for the three nights and had a wonderful time walking along the waterfront from Margate to Redcliffe. For those of you who live in the Redcliffe area you are so lucky to have this lovely waterfront. This is Margate Beach.

Margate Beach 01Imagine waking up to that lovely sight every morning!

In Redcliffe I visited the very famous Bee Gees Way which is a wonderful tribute to the brothers Gibb.

Bee Gees Way 27I took a stack more photos which you can view here.

And of course, you didn’t think I would visit a new area and not check out the Opp Shops!! Margate has a cluster of these shops within walking distance of each other so I visited each one (and some of them twice!). Here are my bargain buys.

This gorgeous knitting mug for $1…

Knitting Mug 1-tileHow’s this for a rocking sheep! I was amazed these items are actually made let alone me finding one for $6.

Rocking SheepAnother little sheep to add to my collection…

NZ Sheep

I was also given these six beautifully hand made coasters by Pam, a member of the Redcliffe Spinners & Weavers. Aren’t they beautiful?

Sheep coasters fabric

Along the foreshore at Redcliffe there are lots of eateries which were a welcome sight after my rather long hot walk from Margate. This was my view from one of the coffee shops.

Redcliffe coffee shop

There is something about being near the water which instantly calms me. I would love to one day own a home right on the waterfront so I could hear the gentle lapping of the waves as I did at Margate. I also spent over an hour sitting on the jetty at Redcliffe peacefully doing some knitting.

On the Thursday, I attended the Redcliffe Spinners & Weavers Friendship Day which was lots of fun and has geared me up for the Redlands Spinners & Weavers Open Day on 21 June. I was also given this lovely plate from my friend Gillian who spotted it at a second hand shop recently.

Shearer Plate

And on Friday night at another regular crafty gathering with two others, my friend Stephanie gave me this sheep mug she’d found in an Opp Shop.

Sheep Mug side 1-tile

Isn’t it stunning? Every sheep on the mug is different. It’s probably the most unusual mug in my burgeoning collection 🙂 I’m very lucky to have this mug as it’s from Scotland as can be seen by the logo under the mug.

Sheep Mug bottom

And to finish off, even though this isn’t sheep related, I did find this rather lovely bag for only $4.

Striped bag

So, all in all, it was a lovely quick getaway to an area of Brisbane that is less than an hour’s drive from my place but I never seem to get there.

Now, it’s time to get back to some more weaving, spinning and knitting 🙂

Until next time…

Melanie

Noosaville Holiday Wrap-Up

My three weeks’ holiday at Noosaville has now come to an end 😦 It’s been an amazing time and I have loved every minute of it! This is truly one of the most beautiful places in the world and I am so lucky to live so near to it.

I’ve had spectacular weather and was privileged to walk along the Noosa River and look at this every day.

Noosaville 17-7-15 01Noosaville 30-7-15 01Noosaville 30-7-15 03I love these majestic pelicans that make the Noosa River their home.

Pelicans Nville 30-7-15 01Pelicans Nville 30-7-15 03

This particular part of the walk along the riverfront is quite magical.

Weeping figs 01Weeping figs 03So many people have stopped and chatted to me as I sat at my usual spot near T-Boat Hire knitting to my heart’s content. Most of these people have been Victorians, Tasmanians and New Zealanders escaping their bitterly cold winters to spend 4-8 weeks in our gorgeous winter sun. The kids were all back at school so it really is the best time to visit the Sunshine Coast. One couple who stopped and chatted to me remembered me sitting in the same spot last year!

I have experienced some gorgeous afternoons as the sun set.

Noosaville Clouds 22-7-15 05And of course, I’ve had loads of fun at Sheep Thrills meeting so many lovely knitters and crocheters. I even met a spinner originally from Brisbane (now living in Tewantin) who knows someone in my spinning group!

Sheep Thrills 16-7-15 02Bonnie (the owner) gave me a big hug this afternoon as I left for the last time. I was quite sad as I really love this little shop and the eclectic mix of women who visit for a knit, crochet or simply to purchase yarn. Today it was very busy with 21 noisy crafters at work.

Sheep Thrills 30-7-15 05And I’ve gazed at so much luscious yarn. And of course, I have bought a lot of that luscious yarn 🙂

Ella Rae Lace Merino 03Sheep Thrills 03I even managed to buy this very cute little sheep at the local newsagent of all places! She’ll fit right into my bedroom with its orange accent colour 🙂 I bet you wished you had her Bonnie 🙂

Sheep Orange Feet 01Sheep Orange Feet 03During the last three weeks, I have crocheted a C2C afghan, knitted three Croc-a-tail scarves, a My Friend Nancy scarf, a Chunky Misti Hand Paint Alpaca scarf, a Lophelia cowl, a Cria Concentrate scarf and a Margarita hat. You’ll get to see all these projects once I’ve blocked some of them and settled back in at home.

Many thanks to my friends whom I met with during the last three weeks. I’m going to miss you all but the good news is, I’ve already booked my three weeks for next year so I have something to look forward to!!! 🙂 🙂

To finish off, here’s a collage of all the selfies I took nearly every day and posted on my FB page, no doubt, driving my friends mad in the process 🙂

Melanie 16-7-15-tile

So until next time…

Melanie

A Chunky Scarf, Baxter and a C2C Throw!

This little project took me only one night to complete. Granted it was knit on 9mm needles using Misti Alpaca Hand Paint Chunky yarn which is luxuriously soft as it’s a 100% baby alpaca.

Misti Alpaca Chunky 02The pattern is Misti Chunky Ribs & Ruffles Scarf and has lovely ruffled ends.

Misti Chunky Scarf 03This scarf has certainly kept out the bitingly cold wind which I experienced not long after my arrival at Noosaville.

Misti Chunky Scarf 02Another little project I completed not long ago is an adorable little bear from a gorgeous book called Knitted Toy Tales: Irresistible Characters for all Ages by Laura Long and it’s the Daddy Bear pattern. This book has the cutest little characters you can knit and they are all photographed beautifully. I have called my bear ‘Baxter’.

Knitted Toy Tales 01Baxter Bear 01These little bears are quite easy to make especially the face as the nose section is knitted separately and then sewn onto the face. And of course Baxter had to have a bright orange I-cord to match the accent colour in my bedroom as this is where he lives.

Baxter Bear 02The wool used to make Baxter was spun by someone else. I just plied, washed and skeined it. I recently bought another spinning wheel and two of the bobbins were filled to the brim with spun yarn which looked salvageable so rather than throw it away, I plied it. The yarn felt a bit coarse to be worn close to the skin so this teddy was the perfect project. He’s also stuffed with wool so he’s a 100% wool bear!

Spinning Wheel full bobbinsHere’s Baxter with the other two teddies I’ve made with a couple of sheep that wanted to get into the picture too 🙂

Three Bears 01While I was at Sheep Thrills last week, I noticed a lovely crocheted throw and when I asked about it I discovered it was a corner to corner (C2C) pattern. I was instantly intrigued so the next day I sat down in front of my laptop and watched Mikey from The Crochet Crowd explain how these blankets are made. I’m using the lovely Lotus Yarns Winter Sun Aran wool I bought and I am quite pleased with my progress.

C2C Throw 02Who’d have thought I’d put down my knitting for some crocheting!!

And to finish off, what do you think of this lovely large and orange carry bag I picked up at Noosaville? It’ll be perfect to accommodate my C2C throw as it grows larger and larger!

Orange bag 01

Until next time…

Melanie

 

Holiday Happenings

The last few days have simply flown by; I hope the next two weeks slow down a bit. I’ve met with wonderful friends, done lots of knitting, walked a lot, bought lots of wool and met some fantastic women at social knitting.

The weather has been perfect! Blue skies, lots of sun and very cold at times so needless to say I’ve been trying out all my scarves and socks. This morning was absolutely stunning as I walked to Sheep Thrills to partake in social knitting (the third time this week!!)

Noosaville 17-7-15 01The Noosa River looked absolutely gorgeous. It was a crisp and vigorous half an hour walk for me. That’s one way to warm up.

Noosaville 17-7-15 02This is where I normally sit and knit on the riverfront.

Noosaville 17-7-15 03Today I met a whole new group of women at Sheep Thrills. I love this little shop. It has such an inviting atmosphere and you’re instantly made to feel at home. You could say it’s now my ‘home away from home’.

Sheep Thrills 17-7-15.jpg 01Sheep Thrills 06Two women reconnecting with their craft so their table was relatively quiet as they concentrated on how to knit and crochet.

Sheep Thrills 17-7-15.jpg 02The glorious selection of yarns is to die for!!

Sheep Thrills 01Sheep Thrills 02Sheep Thrills 03Sheep Thrills 07Sheep Thrills 09As you know I love a yarn bargain so I just had to indulge in these yarns which were on sale for only $4 a ball!! These are Lotus Yarns Winter Sun Aran which is a 100% extrafine merino.

Lotus Yarns Winter Sun Aran Apricot 01Lotus Yarns Winter Sun Aran Brown 01I am going to use these balls to make a couple of In Threes baby cardigans.

Lotus Yarns Winter Sun Aran Navy 01Lotus Yarns Winter Sun Red 01Lotus Yarns Winter Sun GreenThese three balls of Lotus Yarns Miya will be used to knit a gorgeous lacy shawl or two with beads. This is a 2 ply / lace yarn and is made from 70% mink, 20% merino and 10% silk. It is wonderfully soft.

Lotus Yarns Miya Brown 02Lotus Yarns Miya TanAt Sheep Thrills there are gorgeous handmade throws and garments all around the rooms that are on display and for sale.

Sheep Thrills 05One the throws I saw was a C2C crocheted rug. Now I’ve heard a lot about C2C from the women of the QldBaysideYarnClub so I was intrigued. Leah told me about The Crochet Crowd tutorial video which I viewed and now I am really quite interested so I have earmarked the 20 balls of apricot and brown Lotus Yarns Winter Sun Aran yarn for this project. I am going to be busy!!

Until next time…

Melanie