Friday, 30 April 2010

New Handles

I'm just adding an edit here

Due to some complete tool that keeps spamming this entry, with rubbish links that I've not clicked, and random crap, I'm turning off the option to post comments to this entry. I doubt it's actually a real person doing it, but on the off chance it is, GET A LIFE AND PISS OFF! I DON'T CARE!!!

ok, Rant over. Now to the post again.

* * * * * 
After a recent run of getting lots of things finished, I decided I should try and finish some of the bigger things (mostly knitting). Unfortunatly that means that I don't have as much to say, so I'll probably do a couple of small things soon, so that I can actually post. Posting encourages me to finish things, if that makes sense?

But I have a bit of an update. First of all, the fair isle bag I finished (blogged about here didn't actually have the right handles. There seemed to be a spate of knitting magazines giving away bamboo handles, and the ones I used originally were from a different mag. I guess it didn't really matter, but when I looked again at the picture of the bags in the magazine I decided I liked the handles originally suggested. So tonight I replaced them.
knitting,fair isle bag
What do you think? Do they look better?

In other news, after showing people my Cthulu cushion I've had two requests for more, so I'll probably be making more of them. It's lucky I enjoy knitting them.

Also I gave Kevin the bibs for his bub, and he loved them. I got in trouble from James, another new father, becuase I've not made anything for his son Jackson, and Jackson is about 6 months old. Now Jackson is adorable, and I love him lots, although today I'm less fond of him becuase he threw up on me, but oh well. Such is life.

I gave Angus his Mr Bump cushion today, and I think he liked it, but he was being very shy. Still, it was fun to give things away. ^__^

Now I should go and clean up so I can do something fun, like sewing. Ta Ta for now.

Monday, 26 April 2010

Cthulu Cushion

Cthulu is a character from Sci Fi/Horror Author HP Lovecraft's stories. All his stories are available on Feedbooks, and they're interesting, to say the least! Written in the 1920s, they're a bit slow in some parts but pretty cool. Cthulu is meant to be this horrifying demon that makes Satan look like a cute little puppy.

Cthulu is also a really really really cute plushy!

I have two Cthulu plushies. One is a big one, and still back in Australia. The other is a 'travel' plushy that my brother Wimmy sent me, and he's with me here in Edinburgh. I called this cushion Cthulu because of the colours. My big Cthulu back home is 'Super Cthulu' and has a purple and green costume. Also, the texture of the wool is the same as the texture of the toys.

This wool is called pom pom wool. It looks complicated to knit with, but acutally it's not that difficult. You knit two stitches on the thread section, and then wiggle the pom pom so it's in the right spot. After a few stitches it actually becomes rather fun to knit with.

I was originally going to knit a scarf becuase this stuff is just so soft, but then I figured that since I'm moving back to Australia this year I am not going to need a scarf. So I made a cushion.

Look at all that bobbly softness! Just perfect for putting your head against.

I didn't have enough to make the front and back of the cushion, so I decided to knit stocking stich for the back. I was originally just going to do it in green, but then I found the purple as well (I spent AGES wandering around the wool department at John Lewis, trying to find matching wool) and decided to do stripes. This wool was amazing to knit with as well. It was really lovely, not splitty, just beautiful. And cheap! I'm tempted to buy balls and balls and balls of it, but that would not be wise. I've got enough wool.


It was Moogi's idea to turn the stripes on their sides for one panel. There are heaps of press studs to keep it closed, and when I get home I'll buy a cushion to put inside it.

Of course here is a picture of Cthulu (or, as I prefer to call him, Thulie) sitting on his cushion. Don't you just love his fist in the air, doing the whole 'Rock On!' thing? I think he likes his cushion.

And yes, I know, he's meant to be a scary Chaos demon and I'm giving him pet names and cuddling him. As I said to a small child when I was a slightly less small child who was giving my mum and I funny looks as we cooed over baby shoes, "So we're cracked! So what?"

Don't run away now. That's what the little kid did. Just enjoy the insanity. As my Moogi says, Sanity is wasted on the Sane.

Saturday, 24 April 2010

Mr Bump Cushion

I knitted a cardigan for Christian's son Angus but, since I'm crap at getting things finished in time (see my comments on the bibs post) and because Angus had a bit of a growth spurt, it didnt' actually fit him for very long. I think she had a photo of him wearing it but I don't know if I have a copy of it. Oh well.

I'd put a fair bit of work into this cardigan though, and so I told Christian to give it back to me and I would turn it into a cushion. It took me ages to get around to it (of course) but tonight I finished it. Christian has Friday off work next week and she's going to bring Angus in to have lunch with me, so I'll give it to him then and hopefully he'll like it :) Fingers crossed anyway.

I don't have a photo of the original cardigan. I thought I did but I don't know where it is. :( Oh well. But basically it was a pale blue cardigan, with Mr Bump written across the fronts, and a picture of Mr Bump on the back. I found the graph for the picture on line, and adapted a cardigan from a book I borrowed from the library ages ago (over a year ago I think).

To turn it into a cardigan I had to undo the sleeves, undo the tops of the front to make them more rectangle (which was OK - the neck was pretty crap. I'm not good at picking up stitches around necklines) and then add a band to sew on press studs, and make a cushion to go into it.

Front unfilled
I know that the M and R of Mr are crooked. I'd like to say that was intentional, trying to look 'jaunty' but basically I miscounted. Oops.

Back unfilled
I'm actually really proud of the back of this. He's kinda cute right?

Unfilled cushion
I used some shiny fabric Cheeky sent me ages ago to make a cushion to fit inside. I was going to buy a cushion to go inside but this way I save money and use up stuff I've got in my stash. Two good things right?

Close up of dodgy stitching
Perhaps I should have been a bit more careful with cutting, but who was going to see it?

Oh right, anybody that reads this blog. Oh well. *shrugs* doesn't matter. I cut crooked, but it was to go inside the cushion and will never be seen again.

Cushion finished
I stuffed the cushion with toy fill I had, and I probably could have wrapped it with some of the wadding I got for the bibs, but I didn't think of that until AFTER I'd sewn it up. Oh well.

Front Filled
This was after I'd put on three press studs to keep it closed, but then I decided I wanted more to keep it more secure.

Revised front
The cushion is actually in the wrong way in this shot, but at least the opening is a little less, well, open.

Back filled
There is the back, all finished and padded.

I'll let you know what Angus thinks of the cushion when I give it to him on Friday. Hopefully, since he's an adorable little 2 year old, he'll at least pretend to like it. I think he's too well mannered to say 'eww, crap' but of course I hope he loves it! I'll keep you posted.

Thursday, 22 April 2010

Baby Bibs

Ok, this may be a first. I've finished a present for a baby BEFORE IT'S BORN!!

Kevin, a guy from work, is about to become a father for the first time. His wife Leslie is due in a couple of weeks. I was going to knit something, but I'm rubbish at knitting to a deadline. I know that nine months to knit something teeny like a pair of booties should be more than enough, but ask my uni lecturers. I seriously suck at getting things done on time. (Good thing I never realised my childhood dream of being a journo hey!).

But these bibs I managed to get done and I handed them over today. I'm so chuffed with them. I got the pattern on the weekend (seriously marked down in price) and plugged away at them over the last few days.

Here are things set out ready to go. The white background is to hide the mess around this photo.

Pieces cut out
I decided to make two bibs - the spider and the turtle. I've made a couple of changes, but I'll explain as I go.

First I did the turtle.

Turtle Head
The bibs are padded. I was meant to use some iron on padding, but they didn't sell that at the store I was in, so I just used regular padding and stitched it down. This is going to be the head.

This goes here part 1
There are the instructions for attaching the head to the body.

This goes here part 2
Here are my pieces. Now it looks like it should be easy enough, since the curve of the head matches the curve of the body. But look at the drawing. They wanted you to pin it slightly differently, so opposite curves matched up. I'm not the best at explaining this, but it was confusing me and annoying and I swore a lot.

Eventually though I got it sewn on and when you flipped the head down it matched up.

I didn't really take as many photos of this step by step as I'd thought. Oh well.
Turtle bib ready to be sewn up
Here's everything laid out, ready for me to sew up. The legs were meant to be ribbons, but I decided, since I didn't have ribbon wide enough, I'd use fabric to make them. Padding them wasn't fun. Or rather, turning them around the right way once I'd sewn them up was a bit annoying. Again I swore a lot. After all, what kind of bib has flippers??

I actually asked Sam that question as I chatted to her while I worked. Her response? "The super cool ones!" So apparently this is a super cool bib. I guess I can work with that. ^__^

Blank Turtle Bib
Here is everything sewn up. Just need to add eyes.

Turtle Eyes - first try
The pattern suggested buttons, two layers of them, but I thought that might be a bit dangerous. So I cut out some spots from the body fabric, drew black spots with fabric paint, and stitched them on. But I didn't really like the result.

Turtle Eyes Version 2
So I tried to do satin stitch over them instead. Hey, at least they won't come off! And despite one being different to the other (apparently, according to Sam), they turned out ok don't you think?

Finished Turtle Bib
Finished bib.

The other bib didn't take anywhere near as long.

Ribbons ready to sew
I attached the legs, all stitched firmly down so they won't fall off if Bubs decides to chew on them. I realise you can only see the black basting stiches there, but I also zig zag stitched them with my machine.

Inside out Spider
I pinned them up, stuffing the legs inside, and sewed the front, back and padding together.

Blank Spider
Then I turned in in the right way. Again I just needed eyes. The original pattern had fangs or something as well but I didn't think they looked any good.

Finished Spider bib
OK, so I know I said I didn't think buttons would be safe, but I found these and they just seemed like such a good colour match, and I sewed them on with double thread, and two different lengths for each one (so if one length snaps there's still another length holding it on.). I considered gluing them down as well, but I only had super glue and I didn't know if that was all that safe either.

So yeah, there are the two bibs. I gave them to Kevin today and he seemed to really like them. He even tried them on (I soo should have taken a photo of that!). Now I need to make some for Jackson, the incredibly adorable son of another guy who works here. Remember what I said about not getting things finished in time? I have an almost completed cardigan that I started to make for Jackson that is now way too small for him. Opps. Oh well. Just found out an old neighbour of mine had a baby, and she's tiny, so maybe the cardigan will fit Astrid. ^__^

Tuesday, 20 April 2010

Request List

Ok, this is mostly for Sam (who else reads this?).
Would you like me to make you something? Somethings? Lemme know. Who knows. They may at least become UFOs.

Monday, 19 April 2010

Knitted Bag

I was chatting to Cheeky (my best friend, and of course that's not her real name but that's what I call her) yesterday and I told her about this blog. She said I needed to finish some UFOs, and told me to list five of them. I should probably do a post that has all my UFOs on it but I have a feeling that might depress me. Anyway, I listed the following five
  • Knitted Fair Isle Bag
  • Mr Bump Cushion
  • Bibs
  • Grey Jumper
  • Bernie's Blanket.

She told me to do the first three, to get them out of the way. The first two don't have much left on them, and the third one is for a baby that's due in a couple of weeks. It would be nice to have a gift ready in time for that bub.

Sooooo. I finished the bag! It's one that I knitted the pieces for a while ago, but I didn't want to sew it up, becuase that meant getting out my sewing machine and blah blah blah. (My sewing machine's name is YoYo - Long story). But the machine was already out so I figured I may as well.


The pattern for this bag was from an issue of Simply Knitting. The mag gave away the bamboo handles as well. In the original pattern the bottom of the bag was purple, the top a sort of pinkish mauve, and the criss cross pattern was navy. It's amazing how different it looks to the bag I knitted.


I have lots of oddments of coloured wool, and I decided, since there were 14 rows of pattern, and 7 colours in the rainbow, I'd 'knit a rainbow' into the pattern. I even checked to see what order the colours were meant to be in. I know it's a bit 'braggy' but I'm really chuffed with the way it came out.


(Can you see my mug on my coaster? I had to include that in the shot - it's already being used!)

Knitted bags stretch, so they need to be lined. Otherwise stuff falls out, and since I carry knitting needles with me most places, it's not unknown for me to be walking along with a needle poking out of my bag. Jabbing a random passer by with a 4mm needle doesn't seem to go down well. So I needed to line it. I'm so nice to random passers by!

The lining is actually the bottom of one leg of a pair of black trousers I had that I loved, but like so many pairs of my trousers had worn away between the thighs. So I cropped off the leg and used that for a lining. It should be suitably strong. The bag is a bit too small to carry say a jumper in, but hopefully the lining will mean my wallet won't stretch the thing to buggery!

So thanks Cheeky for encouraging me to finish the bag. I guess that's one more UFO that has vanished from existance. Or perhaps the alien has been assimilated into Human society? I don't know. I just knit these things. :)

Sunday, 18 April 2010

Mosaic Coaster

Much as I love rain, after two years without Australian sunlight it's starting to get me down. No doubt when I move back home I'll miss the cold, but for now I'm finding it difficult to get motivated when it's overcast. It was tempting, therefore, to stay in bed all weekend and hide but instead I made myself go out. I took a couple of buses and ended up at Fort Kinnaird (I need to go there again - It's massive, so many shops) and I went to Hobbycraft. Soooooo many things I wanted to buy. I'm proud of my restraint actually, I bought a book I've wanted for ages, Design your own knits, and a litte mosaic coaster kit.

I've never done mosaic before, and when you see the finished photo you probably won't be surprised. But it was fun and sunflowers are always good right?

All the pieces laid out, ready for me to start.

The design is printed on to the MDF board, but you need to put down this layer of sticky stuff. The tiles stick to it until you grout it at the end.

After the sticky stuff was applied (and I managed to get it mostly on straight) it was time to apply all the tiles.
(I know - it probably would have looked cooler if I'd cropped these all to the same size. Oh well. I'll get there eventually).

The gaps between the tiles are intentional. I had to leave space for the grout. The crookedness of the tiles is less intentional but I'm going to go with the whole 'it makes it look hand made' thing. That works right?

So then I had to mix the grout and spread it on. At first I put on too much.
Somewhere under that blob is my coaster.

The instructions said it would take 45 minutes to dry. But that wasn't going to happen with that much grout so I ended up wiping a lot of it off.

I left it over night to really dry, and then this morning started to rub the tiles with a damp cloth.
Eventually I got to this
I had a look at the sides and figured they needed smoothing out.
So I glued on tiles around the sides. Originally I was going for a random pattern, but then I decided that it looked better if I matched them to the picture on top, so this is the final product
There are still bits of grout that could be cleaned off the face of the coaster, and it's probably not going to win any awards but I'm pretty chuffed with it, and now I want to make another one! What do you think?

Wednesday, 14 April 2010

Deviant Art Scrapbook Submission

Ok, so the fact that I've done two posts in one day does not mean I'll do that again anytime soon. But it makes me feel shiny now so yay!

I joined a digital scrapbooking group on Deviant Art and they had a challenge to design a mini kit based on a particular colour scheme. I'm currently attempting to upload my submission onto DA, but I thought I'd post it here too. If you like it, feel free to download it from 4shared, and if you use it, I'd love to see what you do with it. I will try and make some pages with it later tonight, but I should probably get back to work now.

Here's a preview for starters


This is for Personal Use Only. Please see the attached TOU for credits etc.



Chances are, if you're reading this, you know me already. Despite any dreams I have of a wildly popular blog, read by millions and loved by all, the fact is I'm rubbish at updating these things and so my only readers are likely to be my darling real life friends and family.

Oh well.

Just in case, my name is Anne, I'm an Aussie living in Leith (Technically Leith is part of Edinburgh, but ask any dyed in the wool Leither and they'll tell you it's a different city). I work as a secretary for an Engineering company, and I knit. A lot. I also stuff around with Paint shop Pro, dabble in digiscrapping, take crappy photos, cook (occasionally my own recipes), and write. If all goes to plan (it probably won't!) I'll include bits of all those things in this blog. Here's hoping it works.

Anyway, thanks for reading :)