Thursday, November 22, 2007

Civic art I have seen

And not photographed

On a cream brick wall, high up, spray paiunted in black: "LIBERAL PARTY = PROFITS OVER PEOPLE"

On a footpath ramp, in green, very neatly: "please don't vote john howard back in"

On the plexiglass of a bus stop, protecting the ad behind it, which depocts a toothy, blond couple riding griningly in a shiny silver BMW: "If you buy this car you will still have a small d*ck and you're [sic] woman will still be UNSATISFIED"

Wednesday, November 21, 2007


Still having my ass kicked. I just don't want to do anything. I have my knitting group tonight, and I don't want to go. I mean, I do want to go, and I know that if I don't, I will just sit at home and be bored. I'm just... not tired, but blah. Listen to me whinge. I have to go anyway, because I need to ask advise about picking up stitches wrapped in the purl, but picked up in the knit, since they're making funy holes in my cobblestone, which I have finally been able to pick up and knit on again, now the weatehr has turned a bit. It's been skirts at work for a week, and I'm loving it. Today was cooler (20 degrees c) and I still wore a skirt, but I whacked on some stockings (also, I forgot to shave. I'm so high maintenence, it's crazy!)

Also have to go because I need to discuss the plans for the Picnic in the Park (the celebration for the end of the FEAST festival) on Sunday, and also to pick up my alpaca.

Emma, from the group, dyes. Her colours are beautiful, although a little bit bright and too many different ones in each skein for boring old grey-scale me. But last fortnight she was there with some alpaca in light sea blues and greens, and a teeny tiny strip of lavender... it was heavan, and so, so soft! I resisted - and then on the way home I caved, I texted her and told her I wanted it. It will be waiting for me tonight.

And ALSO, once I get there, in the company of all the lovely women who will also be there, and good food, etc, I will have a ball.

And on the way, I will go to a chemists or the like, and pick up earplugs. Now that everyone in my apartment building is leaving their windows open, getting to sleep is like a stream-of-consciousness nightmare.

Not that much progress on the crafting, although I am feeling the mojo come dribbling back. I was looking at Jodie's blog, and these darling little hedgehogs have stolen my heart. And they speak French! And the pencilcases! With mushrooms! And skipping!

Calming down now. (And monkeys!)

Also, check this out. I'm having so much fun on this site. I got up to level 48 the other day, although I sit around 44-45 usually.

Anyway, what I am trying to say is that although I haven't made that much progress physically on the christmas crafts, I feel like whatever fug I was in has started to lift.

Note to self: take some photos.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007


It's kicking my ass.

Remember the NaKniSweMo thing? Yeah... not so much.

I ordered the yarn on the 1st. I didn't get it for over a week. Then, it turns out I do not in fact has the correct needle size for the linen stitch part, which naturally comes first in the pattern. (who uses 6.5 mm needles these days, anyway!) Ass to this the fact that I have just gotten a new computer - one that will actually do stuff, unlike my last one. Time sucker? Definitely. And it's been hovering between 30 and 35 degrees (c) this week.

So... I give up. I said it. I give up. It's not happening. Instead, I am officially declaring the rest of Novemebr 'finish my crafting for christmas' month. I will complete my dad's cobblestone (I'm up to the yoke) and my bff's mittens (just need duplicate stitch and sewing up). I have a bedwarmer to make for my sister and also my bff. I have three stuffed ornaments to make - for my mother, my sister and my bff. They are to have a cross-stitched motif in the middle, and I've done two already. I need to finish the third, then find some fabric.

There's more sewing than knitting in this, which is good for the weather, really. I want to have all this done before December, becase the bff lives in China, and this will all have to be posted. It would be awesome if I could do that at the start of December, and then I can concentrate on the few presents I am giving which are not crafed. I'm getting a photo I took at my mum's place printed up big, but I have to go out to the place to decide how to get it done. Which is hard, since I don't drive. I have to buy my dad something for his birthday. If I really get all of this done before December, I might manage a pair of Charades for him, too, for Christmas. But we'll see.

After that, I'll have baby knitting to do. I might defer my November sweater. I think I'll make May my official month o' the jumper. That's the Southern Hemisphere equivalent of November. Let's see if I can hang out that long - anyone placing bets? I wouldn't.

Last weekend was a no knitting weekend. I went to a friend's (the one who will recieve teh baby knitting) to help out with a working bee, and eded up staying the night. All night I dreamt that I had made tens of pairs of socks, all out of the green yarn I'm using for my (sorely neglected) hedgerows. They were all anklets, and all had variations of fern motif lace up the back of the leg (ankle) part. And they were all. Too. Short. I dreamt, all night, of tugging them back so they would fit over my heel properly. When I woke up, I was scrunched down in the sleeping bag, so that my feet were pressed tight against the end of it.

At least they were pretty socks. Maybe I'll knit them. Can you imagine? 'Nice socks.' 'Thanks. I saw them in a dream...'

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Love to knit

The place where I work has a specialty bookshop and library attatched. I love this. Even though there is a limited amount of materials that interest me in the library, the bookshop means that I can order books. I can order books that are only available internationally, or that come to Australia with a hefty price increase, I can order them without shipping, and with a staff discount. A decent staff discount. So far I have ordered the Crafter's Compantion, The Ghost Map (Which is really excellent, except for the two chapters at the end where he seems to need to drum you over the head with the connection between cholera and google. We get it. It's tenuous, but we get the general similarity. The more he explains it, the less viable it seems) and I have a couple more crafty books on order.

It also means that the manager of the bookshop regularly meets with representatives of the major publishing houses and booksellers. Today she came out of her office with a book called Love To Knit, by Bronwyn Lowenthal. (Something else I love about my work. They know I knit. There is minimum mockage.) I leafed through the book, wondering if I'd even knit anything in the book. The answer is 'no'. The only thing I would even consider is the wrap thing on the front - and maybe the capsleeve vesty thing near the back, but it's hard to tell if it'd be OK, since it's pictured in a mustard yellow that does it no favours.

Also, all the models are just too, too hip for me. The leggings, the stilettos, the vacant looks. It's offputting. The wierd modelling is the reason I have not, and will not, buy the 4th edition of Jo Sharp's knit series, even though I adore the first three. (Also, her attempt to pass of one pattern, with different length sleeves, as three different patterns, and another garter stitch scarf pattern. Who does she think we are?)

But in Love to Knit, most of the stuff that even remotely interests me are things that I already own the patterns for, know whewre to get them for free, or for a small amount of the book's cost, and are better. For instance, there's a sort of slouchy beanie, which is just not as interesting looking as Le Slouch. (pdf link) Also, the world does not need more knit miniskirts. It just doesn't.

But I can see how this book might appeal to some people - people more in tune with what is supposed to be my generation, people who shop at shops where they sell chunky knitwear machine made in china, people who enjoy mustard yellow and opaque leggings. I am not trying to be rude about these people. They are just not me. This book might be especially good if they have just started to knit, and want something a bit more complex, but not intimidating. Most of these projects I think assume that the people who will knit them are not that dedicated (although all the projects call for Rowan wool, so obviously their wallet should be dedicated).

However, the thing that broke me, the thing that made me think 'this must be blogged', is in the homewares section. Right near the end of the homewares section. It is a knit coathanger cover.

For real? With silk roses, and everything.

You know, some days I just want to give up and go home. Not that I am all the way against knit coathanger covers. They have their kitschy place. But what are they doing in this book? Do the publishers even know who this book is for?!? Obviously, if you knit, you must love knit coathanger covers. Why not include a pattern for a toilet seat cover?

I remember hearing an interview with Shannon Oakey, when she was talking about knitgrrl, the first. She said about how she was in a meeting with the publishers/editors, and they were all 'young girls don't wear cardigans. There should be more legwarmers!' but her mum works in a highschool, and knows what 'kids' are wearing. And when they took it to focus groups, sure enough, the kids loved the cardis, and hated the legwarmers.

It's the muggle problem all over again. Knitters are just people, you know.

I know I said that I love my workplace for being so accepting of knitting (it's about the onlyt hing I have that makes me a minority, and being a minority is the way to be cool here) but sometimes there's a glitch. Like the time P found out that I go to a knitting group, and asked how that worked - did we all knit a bit, and then pass it on? Do we all knit the same thing? Do we talk about knitting. Well, yes. But that not... I mean, what is so hard to graps about the concept of a knitting group? How is it different than, say, a mother's group, or a group that meets to power walk through a mall, or to teach their dogs how to do tricks, or whatever? Not being able to knit doesn't make you a muggle, in my book. Not wanting to knit doesn't, either. It's this blank, unwilling to change, ignorance. Seriously, I think some of the people where we meet would deal with it better if we had a talking cat than when we knit.

And then P asked how the group got started, and I said I didn't know, I'm fairly new, and M, my bf at work, made some flippant comment about people being retired and bored, and that I was obviously the youngest in the group. In fact, I probably am, but not by much. I'd say we have a fairly smooth curve of ages, if you know what I mean.

I just... why with the judgy, I guess was my extremely articulate point.

Friday, November 02, 2007

Measure twice

Cutting not recommended.

I've just been reading through Grumperina's archives (I'm on a get-bloglines-under-control binge) and I was reading where she's talking about TrueJeans. And how you measure yourself. And then they recommend jeans. One their website... they provide a printable tape measure.