Tuesday, October 25, 2011

The last day...

Today is the last day I will have my beautiful cats, as tonight we will be taking them to their new home.
I am so appreciative of the wonderful family who has offered to take them in and add them to their home, but I cannot help feeling like the worst owner in the world.

As I have talked about before, to me if you take on a pet, you are responsible for them for life.  I feel like I have let them down in the worst way possible.  Yesterday, I went to the flat to sit with them for a while to say goodbye with a big snuggle.  As most of my furniture has been moved out over the last few weeks, I popped the stereo on, and sat on the lounge with my knitting, as I always do.
As expected, Nanashi was straight into my lap and Bala was at my side.  It was strange to realise how much I had missed the weight of their little bodies as I sit and knit and having their company in general.  We have been constant companions for 7-8 years now, and through all the years, we have all been there for each other.

These thoughts were rolling around in my head as I sat there and cried a little over my knitting.  While I actually held my emotions in check before I went to the gym, it was after I got home that I had a massive meltdown.  I was fine until I started talking to my aunt about borrowing her cat carrier so that I could move both cats at once.  From here it just kind of snowballed into the kind of crying that could get hysterical pretty quick.  I have to say, I am happy that I had B there to calm me down. I hate crying and it took me a little while to rein in all of those emotions... they are now safely back in their little box, and I will just have to deal with them later.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

The Dress

Nessa got to wear her dress to day care today as it is finally warming up.   She was very excited about it, and I even came across a little pink bolero for her to wear with it.  She did want to wear the blue Leafy Shrug I made, however I have to admit I am not so comfortable about something knitted going to daycare - especially when it is small and could be lost.

I quickly snapped a couple of photos of her wearing it this morning, although she kept moving, so all of the pics are slightly blurry lol.

I have to admit, she looked really cute in it and I felt so proud :D

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Clouds On My Feet

Last night while knitting my Candy Jaywalkers, I decided to pop it on my foot and make sure it fit...

Well... that was a bit of an issue because after that, I didn't want to take it off!!  So, I sat there for a couple of minutes, admiring my work and enjoying the feeling of having those glorious socks on my leg/heel (that's as far as I have gotten! haha! the pic to the right was taken last week)

If I get stuck with the second sock, I will just have to simply put the sock on my foot, and feel how nice and warm and soft it feels!

As much as I find knitting socks tiresome, I do love the finished product... and I need more!!  I am already dreaming of the next socks I want to knit!

I need more clouds on my feet!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Projects Off the Needles

Last night I finally blocked out the Maluka!  I think it came out quite nicely!  I have to get some better pictures though as I haven't been able to take any nice pics of it being worn.

I also finished off my brothers last sock.  No pics at this stage, but will hopefully get some soon.

Now to finish off some of the other projects on my needles at the moment!

Monday, October 17, 2011

A Crafting Weekend

The only good thing about being so sick you don't think you can move, is when you have your knitting in hand and a blanket in your lap as you sit on the lounge watching movies.  This weekend was one such weekend.

As I am once again sick, and stocked up on Codral Cough Cold and Flu tablets, yesterday I was so tired I didn't get out of my pj's until late afternoon, and I just sat on the lounge, with my knitting in hand, and then after lunch I decided I would finish sewing up Nessa's second dress.  It was a very lazy weekend, but a much needed one!

After I made the first little dress for Nessa, I realised that she won't be able to wear it for a while as it's still a little chilly outside.  So, I went on a hunt on Ravelry for a shrug or bolero that she could wear over the top of this dress, and the green one which I was planning on making.  I came across this Leafy Shrug (which comes in a range of sizes! best $5 spent ever!) and decided to make this in a dark teal, so it would go with both dresses.  It took no time at all to make, especially as she is only 3 and it was made with 8ply and 5mm needles!  I was quite happy as I even got to knit up stitches (yes, I am strange like that! haha!)

After I finished this shrug, I jumped onto the sewing machine to sew up the next little dress.  This one was green with a pink hem and buttons and I thought I would mix it up a little by sewing the hem with green stitching.  This one seemed to go more smoothly than the first, but I think that's because I knew what I was doing.  I decided to try something different and iron the interfacing onto the fabric and then cut the fabric around the shape of the interfacing, however that didn't quite work out as it seemed to shrink a lot more than it did the first time around.

The dress didn't take long to sew up at all, so I was at a bit of a loss as of what to do at that point.  So, I pulled out my Brothers Socks that I started to make for his birthday (back in July!! lol! but that is a whole other story.)  They are almost finished now.  I completed the food section, and tonight all I need to do is the toe, which will take no more than half an hour and it will be all finished and I will be able to give it to him (to go with the sock he already has!) and get it out of my queue.

I also really need to block out my Maluka as that has just been sitting there, waiting to be blocked.  I really want to get that off my WIP list too and to take some nice photos of it.  Hopefully tonight I can get both done.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Complete: Little Dress

Last night I finished the little dress!! I did my first button holes and i even managed to do the curved hem - a little tricky, but doable!

I have even started cutting out the pattern again to make another one!  So I must have enjoyed making it really! haha!! no, I really loved making it.

Anyway, I have a photo of the finished dress, and one of Nessa holding it up this morning (before we had dressed her or brushed her hair lol!)  She is so excited about wearing it! I was hoping that it might be warm enough tomorrow for her to be able to wear it, but I'm not liking my chances.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

My first little dress!

Not only is it my first little dress, it is also the first item of clothing I have sewn... ever!

Now, it's not finished yet, but it will be tonight.  I just need to figure out how to sew a curved hem - which I have found a tutorial here - Burda Style: Curved Hems and I also need to do the buttonholes (something else new!! I didn't want to play around with these last night when I was tired as I didn't want to make a mistake). 

The interfacing part was quite easy.  I would have to say the hardest part of this project was sewing the interfacing section to the top of the dress to reinforce it.  It was so curvy and a little hard to navigate the sewing machine around, but I got there!  Even if one of the straps does look a little dodgy haha!!

So, at this stage, this is what the dress looks like.  Can't wait to finish it!!  I have to say I am feeling very proud of myself and I don't think it looks too shabby at all!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011


Whoops!!! Went to Spotlight yesterday and spent over $70 on fabric!! haha!!  Looks like I have gotten the sewing bug!

I wanted to pick up some wadding, backing and bias binding for the Sock monkey blanket, but I also found this cute little dress on a dummy that I wanted to make for Nessa.  However, it turns out that one of the employees there "made up" the dress, so I couldn't make it!! bah!!  Carrie and I spent the next hour or so trying to find similar patterns in the book.  We found these two that we liked (after finding quite a lot that weren't available!! lol)

I have decided to make the top one first.  I will make it quite basic with just the 2 tones of fabric and buttons, no other embellishments.  Because Spotlight had the buy one get one free deal, I bought the second pattern for when I am a bit more confident.  Nessa has already pointed out the pink one with the white sash (the one I had picked out too) as the one that she wants for that one.

I meant to take a photo of the fabrics I bought, they are so bright and fun!!  I will have a look at making them (I bought enough fabric to make 2 dresses of the first pattern).  There is a pink material with orange, green and blue spots, a lime green material with purple and pink printed pattern and then I also got some nice fuchsia pink as the colour for the hem.  It probably sounds a little out there (and I know B isn't so sure lol!) but Carrie has an amazing eye for colour and I think they will turn out well... or at least I hope they do and that Nessa likes them!  I also had to buy some interfacing - something new and very different for me! I have never used it before, so I think I will be you-tubing a fair bit!! lol  I'm actually wondering if it would be worthwhile doing some sewing lessons to learn how I should be doing things lol.

Anyway, back to the Sock Monkey Blanket.  Last night I added the backing  and wadding to the front part that I made over the weekend.  It was quite tricky to try and get it all to line up and not gather.  Which I made it most of the way around, and managed to get a bit of a gather in one of the corners.... I was not happy!!  However, I am just not sure how I should have done it to avoid the gather.  I joined them all together using a zig-zag stitch (very exciting for me as I couldn't use the different stitches on my old sewing machine!! it's the small things! lol), and I am hoping that having this will help make sewing the bias binding to the edge a bit easier.  Oh yeah, I got a dark blue backing and some red bias binding.  If possible I might try to pin the bias binding on tonight and sew it all in, which will mean that it will be finished.  I hope it looks ok!!

Monday, October 10, 2011

I started a quilt!

Because I got a new sewing machine a few weeks ago, I thought I would test it out well and truely by making my very first quilt!!

I went to spotlight with Carrie on Saturday morning before Stitch and Bitch and found a 5 pack of fat quarters on special for $11 in a Sock Monkey pattern.  Once I got these home, I have them an iron, and cut each piece into quarters to that I would have some squares.  As I had never done anything like this, I kept my seam allowance quite large so that I wouldnt make any mistakes, or at least nothing too huge! 

I am surprised by how quickly I was able to sew it all up!  I have to admit I really love the instant gratification of sewing!!  An entire baby blanket in under 6 hours! (or atleast the quilted top part lol!!)

I'll have to make another trip to spolight now to grab some batting, backing and bias binding to finish it all off.  

I also want to get a book on basic quilting/sewing to get me started - any ideas as to which one would be a good one?

Friday, October 7, 2011

Another project down, another one begun!

I finished off my Maluka last night.  It was fairly quick to get through the stocking stitch, although by the end I was so glad to be casting off as there were a lot of stitches.

The only modification I made was to take out the second knit row (on the WS), but instead cast off purl wise. that way I had a similar edge to the stocking stitch join to the edging.

I will be blocking it out tonight, so pics soon!

At about 11pm last night, I simply had to cast on another project, and after wearing my knitted socks from last year, I decided I had to make another pair.  I really wanted to make a pair of Nine to Five's as Nettie is doing, however I couldnt find the yarn I wanted to use.  However, I came across the very bright orange and pink yarn (right) which Carrie had dyed previously, so I have now cast on another pair of Jaywalkers.  I have only done about 5 rows of ribbing, but I am loving them!  Especially on this overcast day, they are definitely a bright spark!!

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Did it!

So, I knit through my lunch break today, the guys didnt really come into the tea room at the end.  The apprentices looked a little confused (haha!) and one of the other guys had a bit of a chuckle with me, but all in all it was good!  Guess who will be knitting during lunch tomorrow??

Also, managed to snap this pic of the Maluka as it is post lunch (9 additional rows in about 20 mins lol).  Only 23 rows more to go and it will be ready to cast off and block! (sorry the pic is a little dodgy - I do miss my iphone at times like this)

Without the Bad, there cannot be Good

This post is a bit of a mixed bag really.

Let's start with the happy stuff :D  Last night I finished all 33 repeats of the edging of my Maluka and then knit up all 200 sts and started on the short rows.  I am now 'half way' where the rows are getting longer, and while I don't usually like stocking stitch, I am really enjoying this part!  It is knitting up so well and the Fibrewebs MCN that I used is just so OMG soft!!!  It's so soft that I can't even imagine what it will be like once I have blocked it out.  It would make gorgeous baby items!  I don't have a picture of it at this stage, but I might grab one at lunch because... *drumroll* I have bought my knitting to work with me for the first time since I have started working here.  I always took my knitting to my last job, but this is a much different environment where I am the only girl with a bunch of mechanic blokes! lol However, I know them all pretty well now, so it will be interesting to see their reactions if they pop their heads into the tea room at lunch time lol!

Now, the sad news, is that I have found out that we got the big no from the landlord in regards to bringing my 2 cats in.  I have had these cats for so long, that they are just a part of me.  I have discovered that rather than deal with this kind of pain, I just try to block it out, and try not to talk about it because then I have to deal with it. 

I have had Bala since I very first moved out of home (starting to get teary already - sorry for the outpouring guys) when I was 18.  I am now 27 and she has been my constant companion through all of my ups and downs.  She is your typical "I am a cat and I am aloof".  She is as independent as I am, which made us for a great pair.  She is also the typical 'scardy cat' who is very cautious and graceful in everything that she does.

If Bala is chalk, then Nanashi is cheese!  This cat is cuddly! He wants the attention, and he wants it now!  
He loves everyone and when he was a kitten was a complete nutter, doing laps of my flat and chasing Bala around.  I got Nanashi 7 years ago when my bestie Tory moved over from NZ.  He was to be her cat and he was our little baby (he used to sleep in our arms - still does actually!) until she had to move back home. This cat, I swear, thinks it's a dog!  He comes when he is called, he growls if he has chicken in his mouth and if I don't put toilet blue into the toilet, he tried to drink out of the toilet bowl... yup, he is a nutter!!

So, these are my fur-babies that I have had since they were kittens.  I am going to try and talk to one of my aunts about taking them on board, probably for a couple of years until B and I get our own place. But, how can I forgive myself for letting them down?? They are innocent and have done nothing wrong.  If my aunt is unable to take them, to be perfectly honest, I don't think I have any other options really and I don't know what I will do.

Those of you who know me and see me regularly, know that this has been going on.  But, I would ask that you don't ask me about the cats as to be honest, right now I really don't want to talk about it and will end up as a blubbering mess if I do. 

Before I go though, I would like to share these couple of photos of Nanashi, as he truely is a nutter and I love him for it.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

How could I forget?!

When I was writing about the Alluring Sorceress last night, I meant to tell you all about my wonderful new toy which my darling BF bought me on Saturday (after much discussion about whether or not he should get it for me)!  So, I am now the proud owner of an Elna 1000!!!!

I don't have a photo of it, but I did manage to pull this one off the web.  I had to test it out, so I made a curtain for the flat (I now need to make the matching one lol!) and can i just say, I love it!!!!  It is so smooth and easy to use (I'll pop a pick up of my very old one later) and the bobbin winds with no issues at all!!!!

So, now I need to sew more... I'm sure B doesn't mind that I may be adding fabric to the yarn stash... :D

Coffee, Coffee, Coffee!!!

OMG!!! I am so excited!!!! As you can tell from the title of my blog, I love my coffee... that love has been increased in the new love of my life, the Saeco Exprelia!!!!

We picked it up on Sunday, and I am just so in love with it!!  This is my ultimate coffee machine!  At one touch of a button, it does everything! It froths the milk, adds the coffee and cleans itself!  The only thing I need to do is add the sugar!  It can even do hot chocolate and use pre-ground coffee and I can even adjust it so that it can make my coffee in my travel mug!!


You can see more about it here.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Alluring Soceress

A few years ago I taught my friend to cross stitch.  She has recently been updating her blog with her progress, and watching her work progress, I have found a renewed interest in my Alluring Sorceress which I started a few years ago.  In fact, I actually started it in high school after buying it as a kit from a craft show.  The only problem was that after I was two thirds through, I realised that they hadn't given me enough cotton of a certain colour - the problem with this was that they also didn't give me DMC or Anchor threads - so I couldn't match the colours!  Fellow stitchers will understand my pain when I tell them that I threw that one out (admittedly I did keep it for a couple of years, almost finished) and restarted the entire project.  (However, I did make the Midnight Enchanter).

Then, at my knitting stitch and bitch we were talking about cross stitch, embroidery and general sewing, and have decided in a few weeks to actually have a stitch and bitch, where we bring along our sewing instead.  This, then prompted me even further to bring out my previous works.

So, this is mostly a progress report,  The first pic is of what my cross stitch was sitting at when I pulled it out of strage on Saturday afternoon.  The second pic is how much I have done since Saturday afternoon.  I have gotten a decent chunk done!!

You can see all of the new sections (green edging, planet, etc) but you can't really see the dark coloured filling in of sections I did (chocolate brown and navy blue).  While it seems to take awhile, I love that I have managed to get so much done with no problems along the way.