Vintage Fan Ripple Stitch

If you’re a yarn addict like me, no doubt your Facebook page will display lots of suggested patterns and yarns. I don’t take too much notice of them as I have plenty of patterns and yarn to keep me busy this lifetime and the next! One that did catch my eye was the Vintage Fan Ripple Stitch. Now I’m not much of a crocheter; very basic in fact but I was intrigued with this pattern so I decided to give it a go.

Vintage Fan Ripple 01

This picture fails to capture the vivid colours of this gorgeous wool I used which is Bendigo Woollen Mills’ Classic 8ply. I love this wool; it’s beautiful and it’s Australian too. The colours I used are Broadleaf, Burnt Orange, Celery, Guava, Marigold, Mulga and Pumpkin.

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I used a 4m hook and I’m very pleased with the finished product. I’ve just changed all my bed linen and have placed this afghan on my bed for the winter months.

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It’s funny when you’re crocheting or knitting something this size you immediately think it’s going to be huge because it takes up quite a bit of room on your lap when you’re making it. However, once it’s spread out on a queen size bed it doesn’t look that large! Consequently, I’ve had to put it off centre a bit so I get the benefit of it 🙂

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I made this afghan a while ago but have only just photographed it as it’s been in my linen cupboard waiting for the cooler weather to arrive.

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I’ve noticed it’s been about three weeks since my last post. I can’t believe how quickly the time goes. I always seem to be so busy that my posts fall behind. I’ve been knitting and spinning as well as buying an old spinning wheel, refurbishing and onselling it. This always keeps me busy.

Next weekend I’m going to a weaving camp where I hope to get a little weaving done although I will also be taking along a number of baby garments I’ve made that don’t have their buttons on them yet as I hate sewing on buttons which means garments can sit there for months before they’re completed. I figure being at camp will be the ideal place to finally sit down and finish that pesky sewing 🙂

That’s my news for now.

Until next time.

Melanie

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The Shambles Socks – Pair # 61

It’s not often I write a pattern for socks; usually I’m testing other patterns or searching for patterns on Ravelry. I’m pleased to say, here is one of my patterns.

When I visited York in the UK in the 1980s I distinctly remember visiting The Shambles. I was fascinated by the uneven cobblestone paving. This pattern reminds me of those cobblestones: a bit wonky and uneven.

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All the more reason to call this pattern The Shambles Socks!

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These socks are knitted cuff down. The pattern is easy to memorise as it just consists of some knitting, purling, k2tog, ssk and yo.

My sample is a Size 9 women’s (Australia; European size 40). Because this is a 16 sts repeat, it would be easier to go down a needle size if you wish to make a smaller pair or go up a needle size to make a larger pair.

Shambles Socks 07

I always like to read through a pattern and highlight any instructions that I think I’ll need to be alerted to when I reach a particular section. This tends to save time and hopefully will avoid the need to frog any knitting 🙂

I used the Eye of Partridge heel flap which gives a lovely subtle pattern.

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The toe is a standard one: alternate rows of decreasing and knitting until you have five sts left on each needle and then simply graft close.

Shambles Socks 10These socks are not tight fitting; they have quite a bit of ease in them so if you like your socks to fit very firmly I would suggest you go down a needle size or two. I find my socks are very comfortable for wearing around the house, especially now the mornings are getting cooler as autumn fades into winter.

Shambles Socks 01

I used Patons Patonyle 4ply in the colour Tangerine Dream for my socks. The solid colour really shows off the pattern.

Shambles Socks 03

Hopefully, you’ll  enjoy knitting these socks as much as I did.

I’m now starting another test knit. Between that and knitting my Find Your Fade shawl/wrap and trying to do lots of spinning, I am quite busy! Here are my yarn selections for the Find Your Fade shawl/wrap. This is a massive knit and is going to take quite a while but it is easy and fun.

Find Your Fade choices

And to finish off, I pick up this little beauty at the Olde English Fair at Birkdale where I and some of my spinning friends were asked to demonstrate. As you can gather, I love these little bargains 🙂

Sheep from Olde English Fair

Here we are doing our demonstrating as well as lots of talking 🙂

THE FOUR OF US AT ST GEORGE'S. 6.5.2017

Until next time…

Melanie

 

Socks and Bags Swap

One of the benefits of belonging to different craft groups is you get to meet people who are proficient in crafts that you’re not! This was the case recently when one of my friends showed me a bag she’d made. I instantly wanted to own it so I asked her the cost and rather than give me a price she suggested a swap: I make her a pair of socks in return for the bag. What a win/win situation 🙂 Have a look at this lovely bag made of leather and tapestry fabric and fully lined.

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I love all the little pockets that Jo included inside the bag. It’s so easy to find everything. There’s even a key ring holder that’s attached to the bag so you’ll never lose your keys.

Jos Bags 10

In return I made Jo these Cable Rib Socks using Patons Patonyle 4ply yarn, probably one of my favourite sock yarns.
Jos Socks 01Jos Socks 04
I love the very subtle cable in this pattern. It complements this striped yarn nicely.
Jos Socks 07Jos Socks 11
When Jo published a comment recently on Facebook that she’d just made herself another denim bag and had cut out two more for sale, I immediately jumped in with a comment that I’d like to buy one as the denim bag would do nicely on the weekends. Again, Jo came back with the comment ‘how about another pair of socks?’. So I made another pair for Jo using the Circle Socks which is a free pattern on Ravelry.
Jos Circle Socks 01

This pattern is deceptively easy and the effect is fantastic!!

Jos Circle Socks 04

I noticed on Ravelry that some people had continued the circle pattern down on the top of the foot but I felt that it would be a bit too textured and maybe uncomfortable when wearing shoes or boots for a while so I kept to the pattern which was just plain knitting for the foot.

Jos Circle Socks 05

And this is my gorgeous denim bag made by Jo using recycled denim jeans.

Jos Bags 01

And customised especially for me 🙂 Love that zippered pocket on the outside of the bag.

Jos Bags 02

It also has the keyring holder attached to the bag. Plus the jeans’ pockets have been used on either side of the bag for more storage.

Jos Bags 04

Love the compartments inside and take a look at that gorgeous lining 🙂

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Plus a zippered pocket inside.

Jos Bags 08

I was very lucky as this bag came with its own matching purse.

Jos Bags 05

I am amazed at all the beautiful work including the personalised tag on the zip.

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Aren’t these bags just stunning? And they’re one of a kind too! I am very lucky indeed. I also discovered that Jo had kindly given both pairs of socks to family members so I am busily making another pair for Jo to keep for herself as she deserves them!

If you’re interested in Jo’s bags you can contact her via her Facebook page Jo’s Handy Handmade Bags.

And now a quick look at a few bargains I’ve managed to pick up at local Opp Shops. This is becoming quite a habit and is quickly filling my home with all things sheep!

Baa sheep mugSheep ceramic twoSheep PortugalSheep

And lastly some good news to share. I recently entered this competition:

Flock and Needle 1

And I won the major prize!! A project bag stuffed with yarn 🙂

Flock and Needle 2

This a truly wonderful prize and I must thank Alison from Flock and Needle for being so generous 🙂 And if you’re very quick you’ll catch the tail end of the Easter sale where all yarn and project bags are only $25 each!

Flock and Needle prize

My prize arrived on the Thursday before Easter so it was a lovely Easter gift without the calories 🙂

That’s all my news for now. I hope you’ve been doing lots of crafting during the Easter break as I have.

Until next time…

Melanie

Sunset on Mars

Firstly, I’d like to send all the very best to those who have been adversely affected by Cyclone Debbie in north Queensland, Rockhampton, south east Queensland and northern New South Wales.

This cyclone caused massive amounts of damage. It came across the coast and hovered over Shute Habour, Bowen and the Whitsundays for longer than expected thereby causing more damage and then moved south so quickly. I can’t believe the amount of flooding in Brisbane and northern New South Wales.

Luckily I wasn’t affected but some people have lost everything. The Fitzroy River in Rockhampton is now getting ready to break its banks. Mother Nature can be so cruel can’t she?

In light of all the gloom and sadness, I thought I’d blog about something cheerful.

This shawl is bright and beautiful and stands out!! When I first saw the fibre in Ixchel Bunny’s blog a number of months ago, I was quick to grab 100g.

Sunset on Mars

Sunset on Mars 02

It was also quite fortuitous that I should buy a second hand spinning wheel that came with 100g of red merino which I knew would be great to ply with.
Sunset on Mars 05

That spun yarn sat in my stash until a month or so ago when I was at a small spinning group where one of the members was showing a shawl she’d recently made. It was the Holden Shawlette. I knew I had that pattern so when I got home I found the pattern, caked the yarn and started. The original pattern is no longer available, however, a new pattern called the Holden is available.

Sunset on Mars001

What an easy knit and the pattern shows off the beautiful colours.

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I found some orange beads and added them to the picot bind off.

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I didn’t split the roving; just spun it as it came and I love the gentle changes of colours.

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This pattern is ideal for knitters who are venturing into knitting lace-like shawls. The feather and fan pattern is very easy and achievable.

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Sunset on Mars is destined for the Redlands Spinners & Weavers Open Day fashion parade on Tuesday, 20 June and then it’ll be placed on the members’ stall in case someone wishes to purchase it 🙂

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I hope you’ve all enjoyed a very crafty weekend 🙂 If you’re in a flood prone area, please be safe and take care.

Until next time…

Melanie

The Camelot

Ever since I stumbled across my Crofter spinning wheel I’ve wanted a Camelot as they’re almost twins. My luck changed a couple of weeks ago when I found this advertisement on Gumtree.

Camelot wheel 23

Not only did I manage to snag the Camelot wheel but another spinning chair too.

My Camelot is slightly different from others as it has no front maiden and the orifice just rests on a piece of leather.

Camelot wheel 08

Another difference is it has bobbin-holder spikes at the back of the table instead of a kate in front, and does not have provision for scotch tension (which suits me just fine as I prefer double drive). You can just see the two bobbins behind the wheel.

Camelot wheel 13

What I really love about buying a second hand wheel is the cleaning process. I gave this wheel a couple of coats of a 50/50 mix of boiled linseed oil and pure gum turpentine which has given the wood a beautiful sheen.

Camelot wheel 22

Camelot wheel 15

Here’s an except from New Zealand Spinning Wheels and Their Makers by Mary Knox, which is a culmination of five years’ work. This book is a tribute to the inventiveness and skill of New Zealand spinning wheel makers and the astonishing variety of their wheels.

Contents include: Introduction – Saxony style wheels – Upright wheels – Double table (Norwegian-style) wheels – Some interesting makers – Discussion and speculation – Conclusion.

Camelot: Sharp and Page began making these in their Mount Roskill (Auckland) factory in 1978. They exported most of their Camelots to Australia, the UK and the USA. The one in photograph 3-16 has no front maiden, the orifice resting on a piece of leather. There are two spikes at the back to hold bobbins. Some other Camelots have two maidens, provision to be converted to Scotch tension, and a built-in kate at the front. The wheel in photograph 3-17 is in the USA. It has an attractive inlay of light wood in the flyer.  

A thesis prepared in 1985 for the Diploma of Export by Jean McDonnell says “Sharp and Page market an upright wheel (Camelot) for export and for the Wheel and the Loom. The wheel was produced on the suggestion of the Department of Trade and Industry. It is a planned strategy operation using distributors and exporting to Australia, UK and USA (in that order”. (The Wheel and Loom was a craft shop in Auckland).

Camelot wheel 05

The similarities between the Crofter (L) and the Camelot (R) are amazing. Those grooves in the wheel and even the colour of the wood. The main difference is the Crofter has an in-built kate at the front whereas the Camelot has two spikes behind the wheel to accommodate two bobbins.

Crofter 09-horz

The flyers are practically the same; only the bobbins are slightly different. The Camelot (R) bobbin is rounded on one end whereas the Crofter (L) bobbin is not.

Crofter Wheel 07-horz

The treadles: Crofter (L) and Camelot (R). The Camelot treadle is slightly narrower.

Crofter Wheel 04-horz

While we don’t know for sure the relationship between Camelot and Crofter they both seem to have been made by Sharp and Page.

I believe the chair may have been made by the spinning wheel maker as the wood turning on the legs is practically a match.

Camelot wheel 20

I particularly love the flower carved into the top of the chair. I now have three spinning chairs; all of them are different.

Camelot wheel 17
Here’s my Camelot ready and waiting for me to spin on her. As I have three other wheels with UFOs on them, I am restraining myself because I must finish those UFOs first!

Camelot wheel 21

I might add that the original advertisement on Gumtree only showed the one bobbin on the flyer so I contacted the seller to ask  whether there were any more bobbins. She advised there were some more somewhere and she’d have a look. When I arrived she handed a package to me which contained these bobbins, a hardly used Ashford niddy noddy and an egg sock darner.

Camelot bobbins

Yes, that’s right, eight extra bobbins and nine in total!! Just goes to show that it doesn’t hurt to ask sellers if they have extras as a large percentage of people selling wheels don’t know what they’re selling. They’ve either inherited or been given the wheel and just want to get rid of it.

That’s my news for now 🙂

Until next time…

Melanie

Delilah Socks – Pair # 56

Delilah socks is another gorgeous pattern from the book The Sock Drawer by Verity Castledine. I would highly recommend this book if you’re an avid sock knitter as I am 🙂

With its simple four row repeat and the added interest of twisted stitches, Delilah is a wonderful introduction to lace knitting.

Delilah Socks 02

Who’d have thought that a simple four row repeat could create such a lovely pattern.

Delilah Socks 03

The yarn I used for these socks was the second batch I solar dyed using Queen food colours. I used the Knit Picks Bare Hare undyed as the base yarn.

Delilah Socks 09

There are two sizes you can knit and I chose the larger size. If you wish to knit these socks in the larger size, here are a few errors that were spotted that you’ll need to take note of:

Delilah Errata:
For the larger size cast on 72 sts and not 70. The pattern repeats are 12 sts.
To turn the heel
sl 1, k19, ssk, k1, turn (for large size only)
Heel
Turn, and work on the next 36 st leaving remaining 36 unworked on your needle (for large size only)

This is quite a popular pattern in the book with some knitters making more than one pair and I can understand why 🙂

Delilah Socks 07

So, if you’re after a new sock knitting book, this is the one for you. Beautifully photographed with interesting patterns that are easy to understand.

Delilah Socks 11Delilah Socks 12Delilah Socks 14

To finish off, here are some of my latest Opp Shop bargain buys 🙂

ANZ money boxAvon sheepLamb

This next framed picture is quite different. The wording on it says “1st prize RAS Wolverhampton Shropshire Ram”

Shropshire Ram

Although this mug is not sheep related, I loved the Parisian pictures and it’s made of porcelain and is so light as opposed to some quite heavy and chunky coffee mugs that I own.

Paris mug

And finally…..I treated myself to some ChiaoGoo Interchangeable needles in the small sizes (2.75mm, 3.25mm, 3.5mm, 3.75mm, 4.0mm, 4.5mm, 5.0mm, small ended cables in 35cm, 55cm, 75cm, set includes small cable connector, stitch markers, small end stoppers, keys and a needle gauge). I absolutely love them!! The tips are nice and pointy which makes it so easy when stitches can get a bit tight and the steel is a matte look but still lovely and smooth. These came from my local ChiaoGoo dealer: Chantelle from Fiberific. Super quick postage was an added bonus!

Chiaogoo Interchangeable Needles small

That’s all my news for now! I’ve just volunteered for another sock knitting pattern test knit so I’d best cast on!

Until next time…

Melanie

 

 

Suvena Socks

I bought this gorgeous sock knitting book called The Sock Drawer from the UK recently. It has some beautiful sock patterns and the photos in the book are quite stunning. As you know, I do love knitting socks and when a new book appeared in another knitter’s Instagram feed I was immediately intrigued and sought out the book.

the-sock-draw-by-verity-castledine

I certainly wasn’t disappointed. After reading through the book I decided on the Suvena socks.

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I was really quite intrigued at how the cable pattern moves across the front of the leg in a spiral. Slowly twisting across the from top of the socks, this travelling cable is inspired by a fish tail braid. Its name comes from the Indian word for ‘braid of beautiful hair.’ The six row repeat is memorised quickly and the travelling element deceptively simple to master.

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It’s quite beautiful isn’t it?

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I knew exactly what yarn I was going to use. Remember the solar dyeing I did not long ago? I think this yarn was a perfect selection.

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I love the shades of orange and yellow; they’re such fresh colours.

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I must stress here that I did find a couple of crucial errors in the pattern which would cause some angst to those quite new to knitting socks. I made the L size and here are the corrections to the errors I found:

Errata: large size only

To work the heel:
Working across 36 st,
WS: sl 1, k2, p4, k4, p4, k6, p4, k4, p4, k3
RS: sl 1 wyif, p2, k4, p4, k4, p6, k4, p4, k4, p3

To turn the heel:
With RS facing,
sl 1, k19, ssk, k1 turn
sl 1, p5, p2tog, p1, turn

suvena-socks-08

There is a Facebook group called The Sock Drawer KAL where more errata can be found for some of the other patterns. It is such a shame the patterns weren’t tested by a number of knitters before being published as this is the only thing that lets the book down. The presentation of the patterns and the photographs are beautiful and it really is a great addition to any knitter’s library. I am so glad I own this book 🙂

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I can see these socks are going to be a favourite not only because of the pattern but because of the colours too 🙂

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I have since made another pair of socks from the book which I’ll show you very soon.

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So, if you are on the lookout for another sock pattern book to add to your collection, I would highly recommend The Sock Drawer by Verity Castledine but do check beforehand if there are any errors in the pattern and if you do come across something that doesn’t seem quite right, post a comment in the Facebook KAL as someone else may have a solution.

Until next time…

Melanie