Sunday, June 30, 2013

The Great Gatsby Clutch

This weekend I finally made it to the Auckland Art and Craft Fair!
It wasn't planned - I was with friends for most of the day and the afternoon was set aside for bowling, mini-golf and the movies (Husband decided it was Super Date Saturday. I wasn't complaining!)

Little did I know that Super Date Saturday was going to begin with the last 45 minutes of the Auckland Art and Craft Fair.
There I was, running around like a crazy person to try and see everything and decide what to purchase in such a short space of time. 
I ran into Ellie, the editor of Extra Curricular and said hello, as well as Erica from Supercrafti.
I also glimpsed Jamie Young from Porcelain Rove, who I interviewed a couple of years ago but she was busy chatting to a customer.
I picked up a card from Erica and a knitting pattern from While Molly Naps.

And then I saw it.

The most beautiful clutch in the world.

Everyone who knows me well knows that I love the classics. Specifically anything by Jane Austen or F. Scott Fitzgerald. I think it's the social commentary of those eras that really speak to me in their writing. Anyway, I digress. The Great Gatsby clutch, by the amazing Estelle of Brighton, is practically a Penguin Classic in bag form. I have a cup to match. And the book too. I also have a jumper. 

I could easily be accused of jumping on the Great Gatsby bandwagon given the recent movie release, but as a re-reader of the book each year, I figured I was enough of a fan to justify getting one.
It was a little out of my price range. So I walked away. And came back again and stared longingly.
Even with all of my love for handbags and classics, I couldn't stretch that far. 
Luckily for me, husband decided it would be a worthy investment. I'm the luckiest girl in the world.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

A knitted hipster t-shirt pocket

A couple of weeks ago I got an email from a colleague. It went something like this:

I've got a business idea for us. We should knit pockets for t-shirts. Hipsters would love them. There's definitely a gap in the market. We could use crazy contrast colours and it would be awesome.

I figured it could totally work. A pocket is only a few inches square, pretty much the size of a swatch and if I knitted it up in sock yarn it wouldn't be too heavy. I explained it was possible and probably quite easy to do, especially if the knitted piece was stitched straight onto an already existing pocket.
Then came the next email.

So seriously, do you think you could make me one? I'll buy the yarn and supply the t-shirt!

Here is the end result:

 The pocket took a few hours to make after I played with the right decreases to shape the pointy bit. I used some leftover sock yarn to save buying some more just for this little project. I'm really happy with the end result and even my sewing skills held up. I hope he likes it!

I think I might knit one for myself too - such an easy way to make a plain shirt more interesting.

If we are going into business though, I will have to teach him to knit, otherwise the production time could get lengthy.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

I need to jazz up this lampshade

In my adventures at Junk and Disorderly a few weeks ago, I found this little table lamp. 

She's not really pretty, but she is solid, stately, and the wooden stand goes well with the rest of the house furnishings. She was $15 and in working order. They tested the bulb - no explosions.

Husband saw it and thought we could do better. 
Maybe something with a lampshade that isn't the most boring lampshade in existence.
But me, always the optimist, I saw opportunity.
This was my chance to knit some home furnishings that wouldn't get completely covered in cat hair.
Dougal isn't too impressed by this prospect, as you can see above.

My challenge now is finding a pattern that works.

I love the look of this one from but I can't crochet.

This one could also work - found on Craftsy.

I also have a bit of a thing for cables - this pattern I found on Etsy could work.

I just unravelled my honeycomb hat because I changed my mind about it, but this lampshade pattern calls for super chunky yarn. I may have found the right project for it after all.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Lazy, rainy weekend

I have had the laziest weekend. Yesterday I didn't get out of bed until 12pm. Today it was 11am. I guess the two weeks of being rundown have caught up with me but I feel a lot better after my power sleeps. The rest of the weekend was spent unpacking the last few boxes, watching Game of Thrones and knitting. 

Earlier this week, six new skeins of Skeinz Vintage DK in Pewter arrived from Great Southern Yarns.
I plan on making Shibui's Array cowl with it and the stack of Skeinz Prism DK I've got in Toy Red.
It's a project I've planned on doing for a while, and I've noticed the distinct lack of scarves knitted this year.

It would help if I finished some of my other projects.
I'm on the last piece of the Fair Isle Band Sweater - just the front to go - and my Soft Like Kittens socks are taking an age. It's been over a month and I still haven't finished the first one. 

For the rest of the weekend, the nerd in me has been indulging in reading McSweeney's Quarterly Concern and watching Sherlock. And baking blueberry muffins.

I've also done some photography homework. I've enrolled in a photography class with a friend at one of our local high schools where they offer community classes. It was our second week of learning how to use our cameras' manual functions properly, focussing on shutter speeds. 
I need a lot of practice. It being such a dark weekend certainly didn't help when using very fast shutter speeds though - the middle of winter is not the best time for it. 
Maybe next week I'll have a better chance with the weather. 

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Cool designers + World Wide Knit in Public Week

Today is the beginning of this year's World Wide Knit in Public Week. Yes, the above illustration does say day, but knitting deserves a week of public celebrations!
I do knit in public quite often - on the bus, in cafes, sometimes when I'm walking down the street if I think I can avoid injury - but it will be great to keep an eye out for other knitters this week.

I'm going to dinner with some work colleagues tonight, and I've already warned them that I might pull out the sock I'm working on. The reactions will be interesting, I'm sure.

And around the internet, I've spotted some AMAZING knitwear designers.

This awesome lobster jumper is by Kate Morris of Bedroom Factory Knits. The detail is insane. 
I need one.


And oh my goodness look at the colour! Yellow! Loads of blue! I see spring time and fun parties and someone who wants to make a statement.
These designs are by Thea Sanders, who's just won the Stuart Peters Visionary Knitwear Award at London Fashion Week's Graduate Fashion Show.
I'm sure she will have an amazing career ahead of her. I'll buy all of it. 

Monday, June 3, 2013


There's no better way to kill time on a lazy Monday than a visit to Junk and Disorderly.
Here's me being entirely overwhelmed, as usual whenever I visit this amazing shop.

I have been craving one of these yellow chests of drawers forever.

Today I was pretty restrained on my visit. I'm proud of myself.

I only bought one lamp, two beakers and two enamel bowls for the bathroom.

And I did enlighten my brother to the joys of trawling op shops.

He took all these photos.

Husband, as usual, got the bargain of the day with another wooden shelf for $25.

More space for the action figures.

The mannequins were a bit creepy. Lots of limbs missing.

And this would be a great storage option for my picnic blankets and the nerf guns.

The living room isn't quite big enough for a grand piano though. Maybe at the next house.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Happy birthday Liz

It must be pretty nice to have extra birthdays. It's not the Queen's real birthday, but she's given us a day off for it anyway, and I'm loving this long weekend. The sun is out, washing is kind of drying outside and I've had time to chill out and knit.

I've finished my sleeves for my sweater (finally!) and between rows I've been browsing the latest issue of Pom Pom magazine. 
There's a great sweater in there called the Riverine Pullover by Andi Satterlund that I wouldn't mind knitting up next - I love the cap sleeves and the vintage shaping. 
Once again, so many beautiful patterns. If I only knitted from my Pom Pom magazines, I'd be a very happy crafter.

I've also finished unpacking my stash and sorting it all out by weight - it's all neatly stored in plastic drawers in my craft room. Yes. There's a craft room at the new house.
All it needs now is a big table.
Weirdly, one of my shelves seems to have been taken over by Star Wars action figures, but I'm sure I can work with it.

Hope my Kiwi readers are making the most of the extra day off - happy non birthday Liz!