Sunday, September 21, 2008

On a Roll

Have had a very productive weekend with my sewing . My knitting seems to have to be on the back burner at the present time.

Started a toiletry bag for a work mate's birthday, her birthday was last week-whoops I missed the day, but she is on holidays,so maybe she won't notice.

Sandie is hard to do anything for as she is one of these people that gives everything away-not always what you want when you hand make gifts. She is also one of those people that brings you little gifts of things because she thought it looked like something you may use.

So to come up with something that she won't re gift....I put her name on it-unless she knows another Sandie, it'll be a bit hard to give it away! LOL I'm yet to go buy a few essentials to go into it for travelling- that's the idea of the bag.

Last year for Christmas I did everyone in the family one-put in a small tissue pack, toothbrush, small toothpaste,chap stick for the girls,shavers, little shampoos & conditioners-all those things that you need when you go away- they were a great success, so I thought this is something Sandie will hopefully use.

I also made 7 pencil rolls for the all the kids at work (grandchildren & Larissa's 2 boys)-ended up doing them production line style & managed to do 5 today.Did 2 yesterday & the embroidery for one that I completed today.

The design I used comes from Carol A Brown whose designs are on Ann the Gran-I also used her alphabets on the pillow cases- the link is in a previous post.

Hopefully these will help teach the kids colour matching, keep the pencils together & be a fun gift for them as well.

I was going to do a write up of how I did them but then if you really want to know you can always email for the instructions-you'd need a pencil design & software for your embroidery machine to be able to do it the same way. My week has been 'off'- that's probably the best description of it.

The flu I had the other week set of my Celiac disease into overdrive- everything I was eating was making me feel ill (I wouldn't mind so much if I lost weight with all of this- but I never do!) The culprit of course was lactose but it took me 2 weeks to pick up on it so made myself more ill than least at this end of the week I'm feeling much better but my food choices are pretty slim with no gluten & no dairy.....let's hope it rights itself in a reasonable time like it usually does. Good thing is I'm not falling asleep at the drop of a hat as I had been (one of my weird symptoms I get with the CD).

The white blossom tree is starting to bloom in the backyard- spring is well & truly here- although with a temperature of 33*C yesterday it was more like summer. I love this time of year-especially the temperatures before it gets too hot.

My son's family arrived from the UK on Thursday (wife & 4 year old son)- they have moved out here to live-they maybe in Melbourne but that's a hell of a lot closer than London- I'll do an hour flight any day over a 24 hour one. DS no1 has been here on his own since the end of May- so it has been a long separation for them all.

Vista is still driving me crazy-although I have started to find my way around it & I finally got my little Canon Selphy printer to work- boy hasn't that been an effort- downloaded some more drivers today & I finally have action I printed out 15 pics form the recent holiday....dare I try the graphics tablet.....might leave that for next week!

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Market bags

It seems that if I get on here once a week I'm doing well. I'm not sure where my evenings go- certainly not in a flurry of productivity-but the week has zipped on by once again
This week I finished 2 knitted bags- I downloaded the pattern through Ravelry & knitted the first bag as per pattern.

It was way too small for what I had in mind- perfect if you don't want to use plastic bags & you want to take 6 of these bags grocery shopping with you to put the carrots in one, the potatoes in another & so on-but this is not what I had in mind. I found the handles too short & the opening too restrictive....but with all things- you live & learn. So, here is the first attempt- one thing- I loved this easy pattern, but hated the fiddling of starting off- I'm really very lazy & always want the easy option when it comes to doing things like this.

So, not to be beaten & wanting to produce the produce bag into something more usable- I went & purchased 2 balls of 8ply cotton (also 4 metres of polar fleece & 3 lots of 2 metres of cotton waffle weave in the most gorgeous pastel shades- why is it that I can't just buy what I go in for?LOL)

So back to the drawing board- I started off with a crochet hook & double crochets- did rounds until I had about 120 stitches, then picked them up with a circular knitting needle-I also used 15 mm needles this time-knitted the pattern until I judged I had enough yarn to knit the top & when I got to making the handles I crocheted chains about 35 stitches long, then picked up the loops on the next row while knitting.

This worked out a hell of a lot easier for me,but then I can knit & crochet & I realize there are many that only do one or the other.So here is the second attempt-this will hold my shopping & then some- has decent handles & a decent opening that's not restrictive either. And I just love this cotton yarn- it's so colourful. I have put it into my handbag ready to go to work with me to put my purchases in.

When I dropped into Spotlight the other day to grab this yarn I had a look through all the fabrics- lots on sale-I want to know why is it that I can't seem to get out of any fabric shop without buying more fabric- is this some compulsion that I should see a psychiatrist for? ( a million other women would join me!)

I mean, I have about 700 metres of fabric stashed- it's not like I needed more,but I did buy more! Just add it to the piles....then when I go to make something I don't use what I have in stash as I feel I might want it for something better, so I buy more- go figure!
The waffle weave I bought I was going to make some pretty embroidered tea towels from but I feel the fabric, now it's washed, is a little now that's 6 more metres to add to the stash-if I knew someone having a baby it would probably make pretty baby wraps for the summer.
Have now finished all the cotton I had in stash- made them into dishcloths mostly- the kids felted clog pattern arrived through the week, so will start on those as well- my GS will love them. Also have a scarf in mind- saw a picture on Ravelry but the pattern was only available in a book but I didn't want to buy another book (that's a whole 'nother stash!) but have nutted it out from the picture, in my head, so will start that this week as well.
Seems I do most of my knitting sitting up in bed these days watching TV- while DH snores, not so softly, beside me! What an exciting life we live!!!

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Spring CLeaning

Oh boy, what a week. I ended up with the flu- & I thought I may have missed it-not bloody likely. Went down in a screaming heap Saturday night-still have the lethargy & the cough a week later- everyone keeps telling me the cough lasts for weeks- joy o joys- it's such an exciting thing to look forward to.!

We had 4 off at work all on the one day from this same virus-let's just hope we haven't spread to our patients as well- could be really bad for their health..... considering lots of them are old....we won't even go there.

Today is Father's day here in Oz- I wonder if it is F.D. any where else today- not that the kids have done a great deal for the old boy. The 2 sons that live across from the park form us- stumbled up at about 1030- seriously hung over from the party they had last night to celebrate the 30th birthday of one of them- thankfully it was overcast today- they would never have been able to cope if it had been sunny.
Our daughter arrived sometime later, after the boys had returned home to go back to bed, couldn't get her DF to go out for coffee or anything so she stayed for lunch-then we went out-shopping!

I hate clothes shopping- these days I find it really hard to get anything to fit my more than ample figure and / or look any good as well-well, today must have been my lucky day- I came home with a large bag full of clothes- mostly all from Maggie T's shop-must have made the sales lady's day when I said just give me clothes in my size until I have a wardrobe!

It actually was pretty painless doing it this way- I stripped, they brought clothes to me, which I tried on with a great deal of haste- mixed & matched them & should now have more than enough clothes to do me for 2 summers....and I look half decent as well.

The next will be the has to go.....but its finding that great cutter again. I just hate finding new hairdressers-its worse than clothes shopping for a swim suit! Why is it that they up & leave just when you get used to them & of course you never know where they have gone to!

Besides shopping this weekend I've been making tote/shopping bags- the pattern is a free download from Lazy Girl designs I'll give them to the gals at work- none of them sew- most don't even own a sewing machine, so there is no point in asking them to make 2 so it will all be passed on.
My Fiber Trends clogs are all done- how clever are these?! And what fun they were to make. Must say I was a bit concerned having to do them in a front loader that I can't open & check progress on- just had to trust the Gods. Also, I had not pre-felted a sample- like I was going to fill the washing machine just to see- I think not! Anyway I threw them in the front loader in a pillow case, turned the water up to as hot as it would go, turned the spin down to as low as it would go- put in a little washing powder & away I went- they felted- no problems at all!

Packed them with paper, left them to dry- also chucked them in the drier for a few rounds as well- they were so much fun to make I've ordered the kids pattern & will use up some spare wool on some little nippers I know!

Also started a knitted string bag this week- progress is slow as my brain is not fully functional at this stage-but progress is being made- hopefully it'll be finished this week. This project I'll do again but change it slightly on the next one...crochet the first 3 rows then pick it up to knit- for me that will be infinitely easier.

Also managed to clean out my wardrobe & throw out all my old daggy clothes, sort through some kitchen cupboards & have a throw out in there- spring must be here I'm cleaning out the nest!