Wednesday, 25 February 2009

How to embarass yourself on a train

Firstly, take a Tunisian crochet hook. Yep, the scarf I sold on Saturday was the only Tunisian crochet I have.
Secondly, decide that you have to have a project on the train going to orientation for the Diploma of Visual Arts at the CAE in town. Yes, I decided to commit to four years part-time of drawing, painting, sculpture, printmaking and attendant theory work. I'm still more nervous, excitement hasn't sunk through yet.

Thirdly, start said work sitting up in bed working out what you want to bad eyes aren't what they used to be.

There I am set to go. I catch the train, which isn't particularly crowded and pull out my Tunisian crochet and start work. Halfway, I count the stitches.................wrong.......I'll just add another, it won't show...........there's the does show.
You know frogging on a train is just plain embarrassing and then you have the race to redo the whole lot because you don't want to wind it up. Don't look up and see if anyone was watching.
The trip home was more productive.

Friday, 20 February 2009

Starting the market on Saturdays

Well, here's my box full of yarns, labelled and ready to go. I've finally done it properly and all my fingerless mittens, wristwarmers and cuffs have also been properly recorded and labelled.
The 9x5 market has changed it's day to the 3rd Saturday of the month and tomorrow (21st) is the first market for 2009 on a Saturday.
I've revamped the look of my stall and hope that helps people look at my work in a new way. (I'll try and remember to take pictures)
I am however, not feeling particularly optimistic. My last few markets have not been particularly successful and trying to sell wool in Summer seems to be a sort of hopeless task. Five months on Etsy with only two sales seems to only add to the negative outlook.
This blog is supposed to be about inspiration, not about frustration and doubt, but that is part of the process. I'm just not sure which process I'm in.
I hope lots of people come.

Thursday, 19 February 2009

Structural knitting

'Structural knitting' is what we've called one of the articles that we're (Experimental spinners and friends) entering for the Australian Sheep and Wool show group competition. The theme is 'Spin a yarn' and we're sending around our five articles for each person to work on, accompanied by a book.

For this piece we've obviously been inspired by Sandra Backlund, well, I have and if I'm convening this, I'm going to have one of her pieces in. Megalomania here I come!

I started the structural knitting off, and will pass it on to the next person today. I can't wait to see where it goes and to add more, further down the track. We have till the end of June to finish these and we don't know where they'll end up. What fun!

Saturday, 14 February 2009

Woolybutt entry

I finished my entry for the Woolybutt Summer competition. I'm quite pleased as the challenge was a tricky one for me.
Having only 2 balls to play with, the article had to be small. It also had to be useful, as they're being given away. I thought I'd do a little top for a girl. Another challenge, as I don't really do cute!
I started knitting from the top with moss stitch, then some holes to thread an i-cord tie through. I'm hoping that this makes it adjustable. I knit this flat, but decided to sew down the front leaving a gap, when the bottom moss stitch commenced.
Icord ties were add knitting them on the edge as I went. I made two hearts (thanks Tammie) and added them to the front. The smaller one wasn't so neat, so I overlapped them. Ooops, no that was a design decision!
Anyway, Lorraine now has my entry. I'm looking forward to seeing the whole display. Should be great as there is some lovely work. Well done, everyone.

Thursday, 12 February 2009

Small surprises

When your own troubles and triumphs seem trivial compared to others' maybe it's in the small and insignificant where we can find simple pleasure.

While looking for buttons, I came across these two. I don't know where they came from but are quite a surprise and puzzle.

This, I'm pretty sure has a very thin layer of opal sandwiched between, what seems to be, plastic! I didn't know that they made buttons with opal, and I wish I knew where it had come from.

This second one I'm less sure about. Having found one in my stash, I then went looking to see if there were any more. It's harder to tell, there doesn't seem to be any layers in the construction, but it's just uneven enough to raise some doubt.
I'm not even sure where to go to find out more.....maybe Buttonmania. (

Tuesday, 10 February 2009

Victorian fires

Seems impossible to write about anything else. I woke this morning to a death toll of 150, it is up to 173 as I write. For those waiting for news of loved ones, friends and neighbours our hearts and thoughts go out to them. For the rest of us, we go about waiting for news to trickle through, hoping nobody we know has been caught up in these horrific fires. We all know people who live in Gippsland, Bendigo and, (for me in the northern suburbs of Melbourne), Kinglake and everywhere else.....and the fires are still going, threatening new towns, more people to worry about.

Donations to the Red Cross:

Wednesday, 4 February 2009

The Art of Gardening Sustainably

What have I been doing in all this heat? Nothing you might say, but you would be wrong....I have been weaving some pieces for the above exhibition. The exhibition is to support Sustainable Gardening Australia, and is being put on at my local gardening centre, which, instead of the usual coffee shop, has a gallery, run by Meredith Plain who is a ceramicist. One of her amazing birdbaths (with frogs) is in my garden and I would have one of her dragons, but that is a long story.

I've chosen the theme of recycling, so all the knitting needles are orphans from the opshop, which is where most of the buttons have come from, recycled plastics, and the neverending spool of nylon wire. Who knows what I'm going to do when that runs out.

I've given you a little sneak preview of the six works. I'll post the full lot when I have pictures of them hanging, but if you want to see them live....

The Art of Gardening Sustainably

An Exhibition to spread the word about sustainable gardening and raise funds for SGA (Sustainable Gardening Australia)

7th February to 8th March 2009

Exhibition opening: 6 to 8pm, Thursday 5th February
To be opened by Mary Trigger, Chief Executive Officer, SGA.

Bolin Bolin Gallery at Bulleen Art & Garden
6 Manningham Rd W., Bulleen. 98505155.

SGA (Sustainable Gardening Australia) is a not-for-profit, non-government organisation whose mission is to promote the benefits of sustainable horticulture. (For more information about this ground breaking organisation and gardening sustainably go to
Funds will be raised by donating Bulleen Art & Garden’s normal commission to SGA; small artist contribution donated to SGA (which would cover exhibition & opening costs which will be met by BAG); and sundry other donations.

The Gallery

The exhibition will be held in the Bolin Bolin Gallery at Bulleen Art & Garden, 6 Manningham Rd West, Bulleen. (For more information about Bulleen Art & Garden, go to or