Tag Archives: poppies

Knitting achievement

There has been some long awaited knitting achievement in this household recently. My skills with a camera don’t show it off to best effect, but this photo gives the best sense of the colours involved.

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This is Color Affection by Veera Valimaki, for those who don’t inhabit Ravelry… this pattern has been knit a lot of times!  When I took it to the local knitting group, its name was called aloud by each new person arriving, and it was also recognised at the Guild last night.  It is a simultaneously very clever pattern and straightforward to knit.  When I was sick, I spent hours garter stitching back and forth with a stop to think things over only at the end of each (ever lengthening) row.

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Years ago, beloved friends in Denmark gave me four skeins of 4 ply (fingering weight) yarn–the other one is yellow.  They were so beautiful.  Apparently the wool is handspun, (by a very skilled spinner), and perhaps naturally dyed, my friends didn’t know. It isn’t soft, in fact it is a little on the coarse side, certainly not for next to the skin.  I have admired these skeins very much over the years I have had them, waiting for my skills and confidence to be up to putting them to good use.

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I think my friends had in mind a cardigan of the style very much in favour in Denmark–and very beautiful–colourwork with a steeked front and pewter clasps.  I still couldn’t do it now, though I was touched by their confidence in my knitting skill!  When I received this gift the thought of knitting something so large with such fine yarn, in colourwork, without a pattern and with no certainty I had enough wool… I was profoundly intimidated at the prospect!  Anyway, finally one day it came to me–and over a year later, here is the shawl.  I’m delighted with it.  Perhaps I’ll knit another!

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In the garden, we are bracing for the scorching heat to come.  Australian summers are long and very hot in this part of the country, and likely to become more so as inaction on climate change continues, especially in our beloved continent.  However, right now there is a lot of flowering, seeding and harvest going on.  It’s the blessed moment before you start to wonder if anything will make it through summer!  The rhubarb is massive and I decided it needed fewer leaves to get through tomorrow’s predicted 37C heat.  Perhaps I need more rhubarb in my diet, too.  That could only be wonderful!  The beetroot are in the oven roasting for a salad with a yoghurt dressing.I suspect the carrots will be bitter, but they will find a place on the menu too.

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The poppies go on and on.  It’s wonderful to be out in the garden before breakfast (I put more seeds in this morning) and hear the bees busy in the flowers.  This poppy was the most exciting to the bees this morning…


Filed under Knitting, Neighbourhood pleasures

Indigo dyeing

A while back, I did a workshop on Nigerian Indigo dyeing with CraftSouth.  The tutor was the fabulous Oluwole Oginni.  I highly recommend this workshop, part of a series of Traditional Craft Workshops.  Indigo dyeing wasn’t offered in 2012 but hopefully there will be another opportunity.

We used wax resists and then dyed with indigo, using several dips.

I turned some of the fabric I worked on into these fully lined bags.

The denim is from recycled jeans, one pair to each bag!  This pair are a hemp blend.

And since we’re here… a couple of gratuitous pictures of a poppy that came up in my garden.  I can’t really claim to have planted it, though it bears a strong resemblance to some blood poppies I grew years back from a gift of seed.  But it was beautiful, and the bees love these flowers.  It is winter here now and I have just a few of these poppies beginning life in the garden, which have escaped the caterpillars.  So here’s hoping for more flowers later in the year!


Filed under Sewing