Podcast Notes – 9th May – feels like it’s been ages…

Kylie brought an uninvited guest home from her hols so it’s been a wee while since we caught up. That just means we have heaps of crafty projects to talk about ๐Ÿ˜€ And a wee bonus of a visit to a really cute yarn shop.

WIPs

Kylie cast on a plain vanilla sock out of some super soft Mrs Peacock Yarns (colourway “Peace on Earth”). There will be a fleegle heel, which i’m using the pattern Your New Favorite Toe-Up Sock.

Gill is also knitting some self-striping socks with yarn from Narrative Yarns. She released some Anzac Day stitch-markers so Gill is using that too ๐Ÿ˜€ The pattern of these socks is Charade.

Kylie’s also made lots of progress on her DRK Everyday Socks which she is knitting out of handspun from StitchPunk, spun into a Crepe construction. There’s an article in knitty about this construction.

Gill is super close to finishing her Jeck socks – she just needs to do the second afterthought heel! The main yarn is from Nana-Cindy (Colourway “Lithium”) with the contrast heel/toe/cuff out of a Schoppel-Wolle Crazy Zauberball.

Gill has cast on a gorgeous new cardigan called Retro by Kirsten of Skein Australia. The main colour is Prosper Yarn and the striped yarns are Fibre2go and some yarn from Lochanside purchased from Wool on Wheels.

Kylie’s done a wee bit of work on her Yeah Yeah Sweater, but it’s gone into devil’s corner for a bit.

Finished!

Gnome Pun Intended was knit by Kylie out of her handspun that she is using for her DRK socks, as well as a free mini from Dreamfire Yarns.

We both made mitts!! Gill made some gorgeous patterned mitts using some Nana-Cindy yarn (Colourway “Lithium”). She was super clever and used the Socks on a Plane cable for the pattern. Kylie’s mitts were made using some worsted BFL from Yeah Yeah Yarn and a free pattern called the Cozy Cuffed Mitts.

Gillian has finished a gorgeous Reis sweater – all out of her handspun yarn!!! The braids for her handspun came from lots of kiwi dyers including Fibre2go and Heavenly Wools and some from Dye Candy (purchased from Nana-Cindy).

Kylie finally finished a big shawl she’s been working on for about 6 months – the Brioband shawl. Most of the yarn is from Stephen and Penelope in Amsterdam. Dyers include Undercover Otter, GarnStories, Skein (Australia) and Yarn Therapy (NZ).

Kylie’s Cross-Stitch’s are from Spruce Craft Co. They have been fun little projects.

Gill has finished some gorgeous spinning using fibre from fibre2go and (i think?!!!) Weather Wools. She also made some skeins of mock-tweed yarn using a tutorial from the Passioknit Spinner (on her Patreon). This is recreating the Hedgehog Fibres Tweed which is stunning, but quite pricey!! Kylie is planning on doing a similar spin at some point.

Shawl Musings

We had a discussion on if you can ever have too many shawls. Gill gives hers away or frogs her shawls when she’s fallen out with them, or doesn’t wear them anymore. Kylie has filled up her shawl box so there’s no room for anymore shawls!! Do you think you can have too many shawls? What do you do with shawls (or knits in general) that you don’t use anymore, or have fallen out with?

Aquisitions

Kylie got a gorgeous “Crafts & Wine” pin from a bookshop in Mudgee (rural NSW). The pin was made by Jubly-Umph.

Gill did a spot of shopping with Loopine to get some needles and some very pretty and practical Cascade sock yarn as well as a Pom Pom Magazine.

Kylie did some shopping with Dreamfire Yarn to get some yarn for contrasting heels and toes for DK socks (she does an amazing wool/nylon DK yarn base for heavier socks!). She does some great stitchmarkers with both a lobster clasp and a loop!

Gillian also got some lovely Ashford Handcarders to get more creative with her handspinning preparation!

In the Blue Mountains (inland from Sydney) Kylie was able to visit a couple of yarn shops. At The House of Wool she purchased some Malibrigo fibre, a pom pom and some gorgeous soft as silk Fine Merino/Nylon sock yarn hand dyed by the lovely owner of the shop. At The Granny Square Katoomba she purchased some Regia Cotton sock yarn and a gorgeous skein of Manos Del Uruguay.

Coming Up…

At the end of May we have Woolfest – the biggest yarn event in the NZ calendar year, with over 70 traders! It’s 28th May 10am-4pm at Kumeu showgrounds, so please come and join us! Don’t forget to say hello if you see us – we love to meet our viewers!

Podcast Notes – 28th March 2022

We’re in person today!!! It’s been busy busy for us both, but we managed it! You can check out the podcast here.

What we’re knitting

Gillian cast on a WestKnits Reis Jersey with lots of her gorgeous handspun, including yarn spun with roving from Heavenly Wools, Fibre2go and a few other kiwi indi dyers.

Kylie has been busy with the Sock Madness competition. The first round of the competition is a gorgeous pair of socks called Ipomoea knit out of a Crazy Zauberball which i won from Loopine during the Socktober Competition last year, so it’s lovely to have knit this yarn up!!

Gill has been knitting some gorgeous socks too using some King Cole on the Crazy Sock Lady Heel Toe Do Si Do pattern, which is a gorgeous chevron pattern – a wonderful way to make a self striping sock yarn sing!

Gill has also cast on a very pretty cowl called the Gambit Cowl which is a chessboard/houndstooth pattern, double sided cowl. Yarns used are a sparkle sock from Harnie Hoolies and a Tweedy yarn from Yeah Yeah Yarn.

Kylie has finished crocheting all of the squares from both of the Waiting Blanket kits purchased from Little Woollie Makes. Each square was made using a ball of Moya Trilogy. The squares are being joined using a Moya shimmer yarn with slipped stitches through the back loop to crease a flat seam.

Finished!

Kylie has been busy with the Sock Madness competition. The qualifying pair was the pattern Engelkristal knit fraternal in a green/blue combination out of Outlaw Sock Bandit yarn. They have ended up a bit small, but i’m sure we’ll find someone they fit!

Kylie made a Comfort Coffee Cozy as a swatch – a very simple brioche coffee cozy – so i don’t burn my hand when i drink my long black coffee!

Gill has finished her Fiddly Bits Cowl out of random leftover striped and it looks fantastic! Another finished project that couldn’t be shown (because they have already been posted!) are the Easy Mosaic Socks which were knit out of yarn from Purple Sprouting. Here’s a picture – aren’t they beautiful!

Another gorgeous project Gill has finished, is a cute little Flax Light from Tin Can Knits using some super soft Miro Yarns.

Kylie has finished her Scrap Yarn Basket using 3 fingering weight yarns and 3 DK yarns held together and a 9mm crochet hook.

Stash Enhancement

“Sunflower Safari” from Inky Fingers Yarn was purchased by Gill. The proceeds of this yarn went towards Ukranian Relief funds.

Gill visited Nancy’s Stitch Studio in Wellington and purchased a Kaffe Fassett Mille Fluer embroidery kit and a ball of Regia Design Line also by Kaffe Fassett, which she kindly gifted Kylie since she found it was already in her stash! She also bought a ball of Joy! Opal Joy yarn from The Yarn Queen.

Kylie was fortunate enough to win some yarn from Yeah Yeah Yarn – a sweaters quantity to make the Yeah Yeah Sweater by Dana Kikic Nemmert Boredom Kills Designs. This was a competition back in January between the designer and the yarn dyer – so very generous and i’m so grateful for this gorgeous yarn!

Books

We talked about a couple of books we both got recently. Brioche Knitting for Beginners and Beyond is the first printed book from Knit Grafiti Designs. Kylie has already started swatching for Coffee and Jewels, while Gill has her eyes on Glitz and Glamour.

We also purchased a book together – The Shetland Trader Book 3: Heritage since there was a pattern we both liked in it. There are lots of gorgeous patterns such as Vair and Maywick – lots of colourwork and chevrons which we can’t seem to get enough of!!

Sustainability

Kylie has been listening to a podcast called Check Your Thread which has been challenging. It has challenged me to think more sustainably about making and teaching me new ways of doing things, like using Waste Free patterns and working more from stash “The most sustainable fabric is the fabric you already have.”

Podcast Notes – 9th March 2022 – the germs got us…

Click here to view podcast.

Apologies for such a large gap in our podcasts – we got hit by germs!! Thankfully neither of us have had Covid, but it seems we have fallen victim to another lurgy of sorts! We’re back! But Kylie still has a sore throat, so you’ll just have to bare with us today ๐Ÿ˜€

Finished Objects (FO’s)

Kylie has finished a hat! Pattern is the Barley Light (free!) from Tin Can Knits in some gorgeous 50/50 Merino/Silk yarn from Yarn Floozy in her ‘Savant’ base. Colourway is “Tourmaline”. This hat has been knit as a swatch for an upcoming garment project, and my daughter has already got dibs on it! We think it needs a fabulous fluffy pom pom – what do you think?

Gill finished a cardigan – and didn’t rip it back!!! It’s a design by Ambah O’Brien called the Ochre Cardigan and it looks devine! Gorgeous lace detail on the bottom of the cardigan as well as the edge of each sleeve. It is knitted by holding 2 yarns together – one yarn is from one of our local group’s alpaca farm (no longer trading), and the other was from Harnie Hoolie’s.

Gill has finished some amazing spinning – some hot pink yarn which she has chain plied. This yarn has ended up sport-DK weight. And some incredible dark purple yarn which was constructed by corespinning, then spiral plying!! This yarn was spun from some purple fibre from Nelson. It might become the edging for a sweater Gill is working on.

Works in Progress (WIP’s)

Sock Madness is on again this year, and Kylie can’t help herself but join along!! The first pattern is a qualifying pattern called Eingelkristall which is a gorgeous 2 colour stripped, cabled sock pattern. Yarn is Outlaw Yarn’s Sock Bandit in colourways “Adventure Jelly” and “Frolic Jelly”. Kylie has 2 weeks to knit these socks in order to qualify for the competition.

Gill has cast on a Lightweight Hipster shawl by Joji Locatelli. She can’t remember what the yarn is but it’s a lovely tweedy yarn purchased at Woolfest. Gill is altering the pattern to suit her whim! Lots of texture in this one.

Gill cast on a Flax Light (another free Tin Can Knits pattern!) as a baby gift project but had some needle woes!

Kylie has been slowly working on her Misurina top by Caitlin Hunter. Nearly through the colourwork section! Yarn is from fibre2go.

All the scrappy knits!

Gill and Kylie have both been channeling a bit of scrappy knitting this year! We’ve found that weighing scraps and sorting them into ‘sizes’ by weight can be helpful for planning out scrap projects.

Kylie has started a Scrap Yarn Basket (another free pattern!) using a 9mm hook and 3 strands of 4-ply yarn + 3 strands of 8-ply yarn.

Gill has started a Scrap Happy Triangle designed by Stephen West. This is a lovely scrappy shawl project with a very funky spine design!

Both Kylie and Gill have started a NorthEasterly scrappy blanket designed by Skeinanigans. Kylie shared hers this week as she has been working on it quite a bit. If you are looking for some scrappy kits, Little Woollie Makes does some amazing mini kits each month – join her on instagram and get on her mailing list to be advised of when they come available as they sell out quickly.

Kylie also shared her Vivid blanket project because she has knit a few recently and has also been reblocking them recently – to 7″ squares. There are 26 squares completes so far but lots to go!!!

Knitting Chat

We talked about our knitting styles a bit during this podcast. Kylie likes the more difficult, patterned sections, while Gill prefers the ’round and round’ sections. We both agree that ‘chunking’ is the way to get things done – little bits of pattern followed by plain sections for example. Patterns that can be broken down into little bits – where it feels like you have done a bit and achieved something!

Gill is thinking about doing a colourwork garment – with small sections of colourwork followed by a bit of plain.

Acquisitions

Gill got to visit the Ribbon Rose in Mount Wellington while she was working! She purchased a “Schoppel Zauber Perlen” in colourway “Piano Forte”. This is a fairly recent release from Schoppel and includes 7 mini balls across a gradient from one colour to the next. It’s like one of their Zauberballs, but you get to control where the colours change – very cool!! She also got a skein of “Broadway Yarns” in the Autumn Days colourway and a skein of “Malibrigo”.

Both Kylie and Gill bought some raffle tickets from Little Acorn Yarn for the Ukraine people – funds going directly to Red Cross. This fundraiser finishes at midnight 11th March so get in quick!!

Kylie discovered a new-to-her Wellington based yarn company – Good Wool Hunting. They had 20% of Chiagoo Needles, so she got a set of mini’s to add to her tools. Kylie also purchased a ball of sport-weight Opal sock yarn (Colourway ‘Rain of Smiles’ – 150g ball!! I haven’t seen this before, so thought it would be good to give it a try. The Chiagoo needles discount is no more, but they now have 20% off their West Yorkshire Spinners Yarn, so go check them out!

Kylie also signed up for the WestKnits annual YAL (Yarn a-long) which is a fully inclusive kit for 3 exclusive shawls purchased through the Stephen & Penelope Shop. They are still available if you are interested in joining me, you can check it out here.

We also both got a new Brioche book – but we forgot to bring them along, so we’ll show this next podcast ๐Ÿ˜€

Knit-a-long’s (KAL’s)

Kylie is joining the Loopine “Sweata Weatha” KAL which starts Friday 11th March and goes through to 28th May. The KAL is to knit a sweater using yarn purchased from Loopine. This is kicking off with a Virtual Knit Night on Friday 11th – check out her instagram for more information.

We also talked about the Drea Renee Knits KAL which also goes from March to May hosted on her ravelry group – the KAL is to knit one of her sweater designs in this time. You could join both of these KAL’s by knitting a DRK sweater design using yarn from Loopine!!

Podcast Notes – 16th Jan 2022 – Spinning a Yarn

This week we visited the Morrinsville Cream of the Country Spin In, which was hosted by the local Waikato Creative Fibre group. We hope the background noise isn’t too much for you all!! Morrinsville is ‘famous’ for the gorgeous cows that decorate the main street – check out Herd of Cows for more information if you are interested.

Acquisitions

Since we’re at an event, we just HAD to do some stash enhancement!

Gill got some beautiful fibre from Kane Carding, some gorgeous Merino/Silk Sliver from Fibre2Go, some 50/50 Merino/Silk from Weather Wools, and with some gorgeous yarn minis from Purple Sprouting.

Kylie got some bits and bobs from Puddles & Quiltbooks and some black and white yarn minis from Fibre2Go for a Huddling Penguins Beanie.

Kylie also talked about receiving her first PomPom magazine subscription.

What we’re knitting on

Gill has been spinning at the spin-in on some Dye Candy fibre – just gorgeous!

Kylie brought her nano electric spinning ‘wheel’ to work on some very fine yarn out of ‘Unicorn Kisses’ Fibre from Fibre2Go.

Kylie is still knitting on her Summer Madness Top in Prosper Yarn Merino/Linen (Project Link).

Gill has been knitting with Katia Tokyo sock yarn on some plain vanilla socks (Meeting socks!!). She’s also knitting an amazing top which is a combination of the Elton cardigan stripping, the Love Note body shaping and the Mount Pleasant, which she is wearing. The yarn is Purple Sprouting Siri Silk Cloud and 4ply Deluxe Fingering in the ‘Holly Go Lightly’ colourway.

What We’re Wearing

Kylie is wearing her CityScape top again, and she’d love to make another one, but in fingering weight yarn – the one she’s wearing is sport weight which is what the pattern recommends.

Gill is wearing her Mount Pleasant made out of Black Forest Yarns.

Finished!!

Kylie finished some golf club covers this week for her Dad’s birthday out of random stash using the Handknit Golf Club Covers which is a free pattern on ravelry. She also finished Gnombleberry – her mystery gnome from December, and made Gnewt, the little fella that matched as well – all part of the Leave Gnome Stone Unturned pattern. Kylie decided not to knit Gnombleberry’s backpack for Gnewt to sit in.

Gill finished her Mount Pleasant top made out of Black Forest Yarns. It has a gorgeous lace section at the bottom and dropped sleeves. She made the sleeves a bit longer than the pattern suggested. Gill also finished Socks on a Plane out of Opal (Colourway 9282 Feuerwerk).

Gill has also spun some gorgeous core spun spiral plied yarn. The fibre is a Corriedale braid from Yeah Yeah Yarn (her shop is currently closed until the next update – Sunday 23rd January). She followed a tutorial from the PassioKnit Spinner (You can find her videos on YouTube and Patreon)

Coming Up

Gill is heading to Queenstown for work so we’ll see how we go podcasting within a couple of weeks. Otherwise, we will be able to catch up early Feb in person.

Thanks for watching!

Is it knitting at work or working while knitting? ๐Ÿงถ

I am lucky that I work with people who recognise that if Iโ€™m knitting it doesnโ€™t mean Iโ€™m not working.

When I have to think about a piece of work Iโ€™m putting together, and I need that moment of peace to gather my thoughts I pick up my knitting and the next minute the keyboard is rattling away. I also knit in meetings, i feel it helps me to concentrate.

Researchers theorise that doodling helps the brain remain active compared to the strain of paying single-minded continuous attention.

So, if the knitting is an easy project then taking the research and swapping the word doodling to knitting is really not a stretch. Donโ€™t you think?

So many lovely things…

There are so many things I want to make at the moment.

There are gorgeous frocks and skirts that I want to try sewing, weaving ideas I want to do, spinning some alpaca that my sister just bought for me, and then to top it off I received this in the post with even more lovely things:

I am extremely aware of how lucky we are right now. I am so very grateful to still have my job, and even more so to have some spare $$s to spend on making. And of course lucky to be able to roam freely around the country without worrying about the virus.

And whilst the guilty thought of a few months off sounds tempting, it is just as rewarding to pop the lovely things to one side until the weekend when there is an opportunity for them to get added to the rest of the pile of WIPs.

How many sweaters is enough?

I had decided that I had enough sweaters for this season and I wasn’t going to knit anymore….

I love how this ball kind of looks like a Kina ๐Ÿ˜€

Then while I was at FibreTron I admired the sweaters that looked like they weighed nothing and looked so feminine. I had to make one as soon as possible!

Before I commit my yarn budget to some yummy alpaca I thought I’d try a floaty thing with some stash yarn first. I found the Sweater No. 1 pattern by My Favourite Things (some really gorgeous patterns with quite a few in English), and it’s coming along really fast!

Then the other day PoisonGrrls (this link goes to Ravelry) who is one of my fav designers, launched a new sweater pattern called the Joanie Boatneck. It’s a stripey fitted raglan with cable detail on the raglan increase and the side seams.

They are running a KAL for this one and the knitting bit starts next week.

And. I’m doing it.

Potential colour picks for the stripes.

I guess the answer to the question “How many sweaters is enough?”, is that I obviously don’t feel like I have enough yet!

Grateful Geeking

After a weekend of full on geeking I reflected on how lucky we are in New Zealand to be able to go to events in person. We can hug old friends and new, and not have to worry about whether we are putting ourselves at risk of getting sick.

Saturday was a full fiber immersion at FibreTron2020. It was the first in person yarn event since lockdown and it was crazy busy in a good way.

A sample of my purchases

I helped out Julie from Wool on Wheels for the day. I feel like this meant that I got to see so many more people than if I’d been there as a customer. And of course I managed to squeeze a bit of time in to have a nice little shop, and a chat to some of my favourite New Zealand indie dyers and designers.

Talk about exhausted! As well as being on my feet helping all day it was a constant sensory overload and I loved it ๐Ÿ™‚


Sunday’s in person geekfest was all about sci-fi, fantasy, pop-culture and cosplay at the Armageddon expo. A two day event that goes around all of the main centers in New Zealand. This year it was missing its overseas guests, though it made up for it by having them attend virtually on a really big screen. Luckily Sunday was quite a bit quieter than Saturday so it was easy to get around and have a really good look at what was there. And of course admire all of the people in their amazing costumes!

It’d be lovely to have a few days of rest now to recharge the batteries, however work awaits, (something else I’m incredibly grateful to still have), so resting will have to wait until next weekend :-).

After thought proves to be too much thought!

I did my first afterthought heel socks. As you may tell by the title of this post, there were problems, many problems….

1. I put the waste yarn in the wrong place, so there is a random line on one of them and a half a line on the other. And I thought, well let’s be honest, I didn’t think.

2. I assumed it would mean no short rows, but the pattern I followed had a small short row gusset.

3. I had to pick up stitches with really tiny needles. Enough said.

4. Grafting and kitchener stitch. This was the second time I’d tried this and it looks just as awful as the first time.

5. Casting off at the rib usually means the socks are finished and then I had to deal with the disappointment after realising they weren’t.

So I guess I probably won’t try that again. Which is a bit of a shame because as much as I like how the decreases look, the aesthetics aren’t enough to make up for the headache.

Merging crochet and knitting…

This week I’ve been playing. I’m expecting some 5gram minis and was looking for something to make with them. I love this which I have on my Pinterest ‘knitting things’ board

I tried smerging a Baktus pattern with the Sonnentau which I’d had in my library for yonks.

Then I realised why I hadn’t ever got past the first few rows of the Sonnentau, the dangles did my head in, it takes alot of concentration for me especially if I want all the dangles to be the same (one day it will happen….).

To replace the dangles I tried casting on a few stitches and then knitting a bobble on the end, then casting off, it just didn’t give me the look I wanted. Then I fell out with the shape of the Baktus.

Enter the Smash and Puny shawl one that I’ve used as a base for asymmetrical shawls in the past because I love the edges. And my crochet hook for spirals.

I had a magic ball of mostly green so I did a bit to see how it went… Then more inspiration struck and I decided to do a rainbow one with a mini skein set I had, and a couple of extra bits. And that’s where I am now.

Love it when inspiration and creativity strike!