Yarning

Today I walked down to the Cleveland Sunday Markets to get a bit of exercise and also because it was such a glorious winter’s day here in Brisbane. As I wandered up and down checking out all the stalls my eyes zeroed in on a lot of hand sewn baby doonas and other goodies. Now, I don’t know why I walked into that stall because I don’t have a baby nor is there one on the horizon for me ūüė¶ (I wish my son would find a girlfriend, get married and give me lots of grandchildren!) Anyway, my eyes immediately spotted this gorgeous baby doona and I HAD to have it!!

Sheep doona frontAt $35 it was a steal as I could see the amount of fabric and stuffing let alone the cutting and sewing that went into making this doona. The back fabric is flannelette and has little monkeys and other critters on it.

Sheep doona backI’ve been doing a bit of spinning lately and yesterday I washed, skeined and wound this gorgeous Ixchel Bunny fibre into a cake. It’s plied with a silver/grey metallic thread.

Black Bunny Tops Silver Grey 01And I’ve just started spinning one of these braids. As the colours of the braids are so similar, I’m going to ply them together once they’re both spun.

2 Ixchel braidsJust over four years ago I bought my first spinning wheel, an Ashford Traditional and about two years ago I bought a double treadle kit to replace the single treadle. I’m¬† embarrassed to say that I’ve only JUST installed the double treadle kit. Why did I wait so long!! I just love spinning on this wheel now.

Double treadleDid you notice all the sheep on my two-seater lounge which can no longer be used for visitors ūüôā I don’t know how many sheep I have on that lounge. It’s now at the point that they’re really squashed together ūüôā

Now to some of my latest yarn purchases from Zen Yarn Garden (ZYG).

The 22nd offering in the ZYG ART WALK Series features a painting by Georgia O’Keeffe¬†entitled “Petunias”. From one medium to the next, artists express their use of colour. Inspired by¬†ZYG’s chosen art piece,¬†their dyer has successfully captured the excitement and¬†complexity¬†of the painting.

22 ZYG Peonies 05

Georgia O‚ÄôKeeffe (1887 ‚Äď 1986) was a groundbreaking Modernist painter who digressed from realism to express her own visionary style. Raised in rural Wisconsin, which gave her a love of nature and formed the basis for her revolutionary artwork, O‚ÄôKeefe is best known for flower paintings which made up a significant percentage of her work. Expressing what she felt, rather than what she had been taught, O‚ÄôKeeffe painted enormous close-ups of flowers, transforming their contours into fascinating abstractions, and highlighting their importance in a manner that commanded attention. One of the most influential and innovative artists of the 20th century, O‚ÄôKeeffe was the first woman to have her own exhibition at New York‚Äôs Museum of Modern Art.¬†[quoted from Art.com]

22 ZYG Peonies image

I bought two skeins of this Serenity 20 fingering which is a 70% superwash merino / 20% cashmere / 10% nylon blend.

The 23rd offering in the ZYG WALK Series features a painting by Jackson Pollock¬†entitled “Number 18”.¬†Inspired by ZYG’s chosen art piece,¬†their dyer has successfully captured the excitement and¬†complexity¬†of the painting.23 ZYG No 18 Pollock 6

Jackson Pollock (1912 ‚Äď 1956), the pioneer of Abstract Expressionism, challenged the artistic tradition of using an easel and brush by pouring and dripping paint onto canvases. His groundbreaking works had a childlike quality which belied their stunning complexity and sophistication. Driven by inner torment which compelled him to paint, Pollock attached large canvases to the floor, densely pouring, dripping and flinging paint embedded with sand or glass onto them with intense physical movement. Influenced by Picasso, Mir√≥, and the Surrealists, Pollock also revolutionized a style of painting in which the work has no identifiable parts or point of emphasis, and is painted with a stream-of-consciousness technique called psychic automatism.¬†[quoted from Art.com]
23 ZYG No 18 Pollock image
I purchased two skeins of this Serenity 20 fingering which is a 70% superwash merino / 20% cashmere / 10% nylon blend.

The 24th offering in the ZYG ART WALK Series features a painting by Pablo Picasso¬†entitled “Blue Nude”.¬†Inspired by ZYG’s chosen art piece,¬†their dyer has successfully captured the excitement and¬†complexity¬†of the painting.

24 ZYG Blue Nude 06

Pablo Picasso (1881-1973), a twentieth century Grand Master who co-founded Cubism, was only 20 years old when his friend‚Äôs tragic death resulted in the subdued ‚ÄúBlue Nude. His ‚ÄúBlue Period‚ÄĚ artworks, rendered in somber blues and greens, were part of an astounding 20,000 paintings, prints, drawings and sculptures he produced in his lifetime. Hauntingly beautiful and exquisitely composed, ‚ÄúBlue Nude‚ÄĚ is one of Picasso‚Äôs best-selling pieces, and a testament to his ability to express complex emotions with one simple shade.¬†[quoted from Art.com]
24 ZYG Blue Nude image
I purchased two skeins of this Serenity Silk Single fingering 75% superwash merino / 15% cashmere / 10% silk blend.

And finally, the 25th¬†offering in the ZYG ART WALK Series features a painting by Norman Rockwell¬†entitled “Walking to Church”.¬†Inspired by ZYG’s chosen art piece,¬†their dyer has successfully captured the excitement and¬†complexity¬†of the painting.

25 ZYG Walking to Church 01

Norman Rockwell (1894 ‚Äď 1978), one of America‚Äôs most beloved artists, left a timeless legacy of nostalgic, endearing, whimsical paintings that appealingly and insightfully depict simple, and often idyllic, scenes from daily life. After illustrating a series of children‚Äôs books at age 16, Rockwell was hired to be the art director of ‚ÄúBoys‚Äô Life,‚ÄĚ the official publication of the Boy Scouts of America. Six years later, he sold his first cover to the most prestigious magazine of the era, the ‚ÄúSaturday Evening Post.‚ÄĚ Over the next 47 years, he created 321 covers for the ‚ÄúPost,‚ÄĚ which became synonymous with his name. He later worked for ‚ÄúLook‚ÄĚ magazine, addressing more serious issues of civil rights, poverty and space exploration.¬†[quoted from Art.com]
25 ZYG walkingtochurch4_grande
I bought two skeins of this Serenity 20 fingering 70% superwash merino / 20% cashmere / 10% nylon blend.

I remember when I bought my first two skeins of the ART WALK series back in March 2013 I had visions of collecting two skeins in each release thinking¬†there’d be no more than ten or so releases. We’re now up to number 25 release and I’m starting to worry that I’ll be buying these ART WALK series for the rest of my life ūüôā I wonder when they will cease??

Before I go, I must tell you that I am starting to sell some of hand knitted goodies. My friends have encouraged me over the last couple of years to start selling them but I didn’t feel inclined to but it has now got to the point where I have a lot of these items just sitting in zip lock bags as I can’t get around to wearing them all! You can find the ones I have for sale here and I will be adding¬†items to this album over the coming months as I go through my rather large stash. If there’s something that’s taken your eye over the last couple of years and you’d like to own it, just drop me a¬†line via me Contact Me page and if I’m not keeping that particular item then it’s for sale!

Until next time…

Melanie

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Constant Companion Shawl

This shawl was another test knit for Dana Gervais, a really talented Canadian pattern writer. Constant Companion is an oversized yet cosy and elegant shawl and I love the yarnovers and decreases that create little lacy paw prints throughout.

Constant Companion 10There’s an awful lot of knitting in this shawl as it took two full skeins of Zen Yarn Garden Serenity 20 which is a gorgeous blend of 70% merino / 20% cashmere / 10% nylon. These particular skeins are part of the ART WALK series. This is the fourteenth¬†offering in Zen Yarn Garden‚Äôs ART WALK Series which features a painting by Andy Warhol¬†entitled ‚ÄúStamped Lips¬†‚Äú.

Zen Yarn Stamped Lips Warhol 03Zen Yarn Stamped Lips Warhol imageThere’s an increasing section, followed by a straight section and then the decreasing section. I love the delicate scalloped edge.

Constant Companion 05This particular yarn was very difficult to capture on the camera. The inside photos (above) show a very orangey pink whereas the true colour is better indicated by the outside photos.

Constant Companion 09I think I’ll have to wear a black top to really show off the colour of the shawl

Constant Companion 02So, we’re into the third week of May here in Brisbane which means in just over a week’s time it’ll be the first week of winter. Today the temperature is 26 degrees Celsius and tomorrow it’s forecast to be 28! Not sure when I’ll ever get to wear my winter woollies!

Constant Companion 12Constant Companion 14That’s my knitting news for today!

Until next time…

Melanie

Will I Ever Learn???

I did something today that I shouldn’t have. Oh why did I do it? I should know better by now. Ggrrrr.

girl_crying1sheep-crying-emotion-cartoon-character-drawing-41803791I went to Spotlight. Surely I knew that would mean I’d come home with more wool!!! Which I don’t need but I want!!! If I tell you that I paid AU$2.00 a ball for the yarn (except for two balls that were $2.49 each) and saved a whopping $142.52 and only spent $96.98 surely you’d understand why I did this ūüôā

Here it is. Moda Vera Selva which is a 60% wool / 20% alpaca / 20% acrylic. It wasn’t even in Ravelry’s database so I entered it. Bought it in brown, grey and one lonely pink ball. I’m thinking definitely a grey and pink scarf.

MV Selva Brown 01MV Selva Grey 01MV Selva Pink 01Moda Vera Roulotte which is a 100% cotton. I’ll be making some scarves with this cotton and giving them away as gifts. Lovely green, mocha and pink. Maybe some more Minnies.

MV Roulotte Green 01 MV Roulotte Mocha 01 MV Roulotte Pink 01Moda Vera Deli which is a 70% alpaca / 20% wool / 10% yarn. Again, another yarn I added to Ravelry’s database so my photos are now displayed ūüôā Gorgeous blue, brown and a lovely rust colour. Maybe another teddy with the brown!!

MV Deli Blue 01 MV Deli Brown 01 MV Deli Rust 01And these two balls of Bella Baby Marvel Soft Baby 4ply in this gorgeous variegated blue.

Bella Baby Marvel Soft Baby 4ply BlueWhile I’m on a yarn showing roll, I don’t think you’ve seen the latest additions to the Zen Yarn Garden Art Walk Series that I’ve bought from Yarn Glorious Yarn in Brisbane. Sue Wheeler is the sole Aussie supplier of Zen Yarn Garden (ZYG) yarns which are made in Canada. ZYG has been producing an ART Walk Series of yarn, the colours of which are based on famous paintings. They are simply exquisite and I have purchased two skeins in each series. They‚Äôre currently up to Number 19 and can be found at Yarn Glorious Yarn soon after the colours are released. Cost per skein is generally between $32-$36 but well worth the value particularly when some of the yarn has a cashmere content.

The fifteenth¬†offering in the ART WALK Series features a painting by¬†Jackson Pollock entitled “Convergence”. From one medium to the next, artists express their use of colour. Inspired by Pollock, ZYG’s dyer has successfully captured the excitement and¬†complexity¬†of the painting.

‚ÄúConvergence,‚ÄĚ a densely painted artwork filled with a childlike sense of freedom, and staggering complexity and sophistication was created by Jackson Pollock (1912 ‚Äď 1956), the founder of Abstract Expressionism. Laying large canvases on his studio floor, Pollock challenged the tradition of using an easel and brush, pouring and dripping paint with dramatic physical movement, allowing his subconscious to dictate his motions. Influenced by Picasso, Mir√≥, and the Surrealists, Pollock‚Äôs pioneering style and emotional works made him one of the most challenging and influential artists of the 20th century.¬†[quoted from Art.com]

Zen Yarn Garden Pollock Convergence imageTwo skeins of Serenity 20 which is a 70% superwash merino / 20% cashmere / 10% nylon that contains 400 yds / 100g in a 4ply / fingering weight.

ZYG Pollock Convergence 02The sixteenth offering in the ART WALK Series features a painting by Vincent van Gogh¬†entitled “Samaritan”. Inspired by Pollock, ZYG’s dyer has successfully captured the excitement and¬†complexity¬†of the painting.

Vincent Van Gogh (1853 ‚Äď 1890) was a Dutch post-Impressionist Master whose innovative artwork powerfully influenced modern Expressionism, Fauvism, and early abstraction. Astoundingly prolific, Van Gogh produced all of his work during a 10-year period, at one point, creating 150 paintings and drawings within one year. Painting outdoors, Van Gogh uniquely captured the nighttime nuances of light and shadow, and was also renowned for his paintings of sunflowers and irises. Tormented by mental illness for most of his life, Van Gogh created many of his masterpieces while he was institutionalized. Although Van Gogh only sold one painting during his lifetime, he is now regarded as one of the most profoundly influential artists of the 19th century.¬†[quoted from Art.com] ZYG Samaritan imageTwo skeins of Serenity Glitter Sock which is an 80% superwash merino / 10% cashmere / 10% sparkling nylon that contains 400 yds / 100g 4ply / fingering yarn. I adore this colour and hope to make something special with it. Don’t know what yet ūüôā

ZYG Samaritan 04The seventeenth offering the ART WALK Series features a painting by Pablo Picasso¬†entitled “Dish of Pears”. Inspired by Picasso, ZYG’s dyer has successfully captured the excitement and¬†complexity¬†of the painting.

Pablo Picasso (1881 ‚Äď 1973) was an artistic virtuoso who co-founded Cubism, and produced an astounding 20,000 paintings, prints, drawings and sculptures during his brilliant 70-year career. Picasso‚Äôs unparalleled body of work was so vast, and its phases so unique, that art historians have divided it into specific periods. A child prodigy, Picasso took advanced classes at the Royal Academy of Art in Barcelona when he was only 15. His revolutionary Cubist works, with their distorted shapes and fragmented forms, established art as a genre that does not need to literally represent reality. Zealously embracing every medium from primitive art to sketches to Surrealism, Picasso had an unrivaled influence upon 20th century art.¬†[quoted from Art.com]

ZYG Picasso Dish of Pears imageTwo skeins of Serenity Glitter Sock which is an 80% superwash merino / 10% cashmere / 10% sparkling nylon that contains 400 yds / 100g 4ply / fingering yarn.

ZYG Dish of Pears 01Now I just have to find some more hours in the day so I can use all of this yarn plus the two spare bedrooms which are harbouring even more yarn and fibre ūüôā Oh what a dilemma ūüôā

Until next time…

Melanie