Christmas Traditions

There are many grand Christmas traditions in this house. No decorations go up before the 1st of December, for example. I get way too excited about putting icicle lights on the deck railings. Mince pies become a vital food group.

And I always leave my Christmas calendar until the very last minute.

But let’s backtrack a little first. Continue reading

I’m Knitting it for Myself

There’s a duet of questions you get asked whenever someone discovers you knitting and it goes a little like this:

“What are you knitting?”

Every knitter loves hearing this question – it’s exciting to be able to share our obsessive habit crafty skills with people, mainly in the hopes that we’ll induct them into the Secret Society of Knitters and thereby advance our plan of introducing world peace by getting everyone to sit down and knit.

Preferably with a cuppa.

Or wine and cheese; we’re pretty flexible that way. Just… don’t bring your lacework or fair isle to these ones. And… possibly expect to un-do a lot of the knitting you do at these ones. Actually, it might be best to stick with tea. Continue reading

Three Goals for 2016

We’re eight days into the new year and it’s just as well I didn’t make a resolution to be less lazy or have a more regular presence on my blog because I’d have failed that before I even began. Luckily, I’ve never been into resolutions and I think I’ve worked out why: they imply that the old you was rubbish in some way. “New year, new you!” is the catch-cry. Because the old you is useless. The old you is too lazy or unfit or bad at croquet (or whichever sport is trendy with the hipsters now). It’s no wonder resolutions don’t work: they put us in a defeatist frame of mind before we even begin.

So forget that. Resolutions are out; goals are in. Continue reading

Delightful Dozen Project: March & April

It’s that time of the week: yes, Monday!  Or possibly Wednesday.  Or maybe even Saturday, depending on where you are or when you’re reading this.  Regardless of the day or timezone, I have designated this time to be Delightful Dozen Project Update Time and this one comes with an extra month’s project at no additional cost, beyond postage and handling.  This bounty of projects has come about as a result of two factors that neatly run together:

  1. I finished my March skirt a little late, and
  2. I finished my April pyjama pants a little early.

Let’s do the chronological thing and start with March.  I decided it was high time I finally made the Delphine Skirt from Love at First Stitch by Tilly and the Buttons.  High time indeed, given that I bought the book last May and purchased the fabric not long after.  From the first time I saw a picture of this skirt, I knew it was my kind of skirt.  High-waisted?  Yes, thanks.  A-line shape?  Don’t mind if I do.  I chose the fabric because it was a drill with a bit of substance but mostly because the pattern hinted at the shape of the skirt itself.

But let me not ramble on and on with no purpose.  Here is the skirt itself: Continue reading

This Week

If you asked me to tell you what the past week has been about, I would probably say ‘knitting’.  Or, more likely, KNITTING OH MY GOODNESS IT NEVER ENDED.  And even though the knitting was worked in amongst some pretty awesome other things, it was always there.  Always sitting there, with its deadline lingering somewhere close.

But I am here to tell you that I met that deadline.  In fact, I took it by surprise and arrived a day early, which is always irritating to every host who is not expecting you for twenty-four hours and is still in the middle of preparations.  Alas, I did not care, as I had finished my dad’s present and now had some free time in which to revel in this joyous feeling.

I made use of said free time by switching back to one of my other knitting projects because it turns out that too much knitting is never enough.

When I wasn’t knitting, however, I had a chance to visit some op shops and find a couple of treasures that just beg to be shared.  So here they are.

Firstly, we have this knitting book from the 1960s, which I found in an op shop in Rye.  Not just any knitting book.  Oh no.  It’s…  Well, have a look for yourselves. Continue reading

One Million Birthdays

It serioulsy feels as though everybody I know has had a birthday this month.  People need to find alternate ways of staying warm in the depths of Winter because the resultant avalanche of birthdays in March is a little overwhelming.  It might have been only five birthdays but it seriously felt like a lot more.  And despite my careful plans, it all snuck up on me by surprise and I’ve spent the last two weeks feverishly making things.  In fact, I’m still in the process of making one of those things and I’m on a bit of a deadline: if I’m not finished by Friday, then my dad is only getting half a present for his birthday.

It will be done.

It must be done. Continue reading

The Mystery Parcel in the Mail

So, you don’t know me, began the message, but you’ve kind of turned up via my incessant sewing-blog-following.

Honestly, the writer had me at So.  I love a mysterious message out of the blue; it’s even better when you keep reading it and discover it’s genuine and not some annoying spam disguised as a vaguely-coherent ramble.  This message fell well and truly into the former category, which is just as well, otherwise this would be a completely different blog post in which I rant about spam instead of one where a mystery parcel arrives on my doorstep. Continue reading

The Calendar in the Bathroom

Let’s be honest: I’m being polite here.  The title really should read The Calendar in the Toilet but for some reason I didn’t think that set quite the right tone.  It could also have been The Calendar That Isn’t The One Hanging In The Kitchen but that’s just bordering on the obscure for those of us who don’t live in my house, which is pretty much everyone reading this.

But let’s stop focussing on what could have been and focus on what is, namely, the traditions of this house.  Traditions such as Thou Shalt Not Cook Bacon Unless Everyone’s Getting Some (which tradition is broken by my sister-in-law on a regular basis); Thou Shalt Not Jump Onto The Bench And Lick The Butter (which tradition only applies to one of our cats… I hope); and last, but not least, There Shall Always Be Two Calendars.

Yes, always two.  In yet another tradition, my mum always gives us a cat calendar for Christmas and this one hangs in the kitchen, adding yet another touch of catness to the house.  The second calendar lives in the bathroom and usually features photographs of interesting locations and landscapes.  I have to buy this one myself but never fear – I always buy it after the new year when calendars are on special.

This year, however, this calendar purchase didn’t occur and days went by with bathroom visitors being forced to look at December 2014 in outright defiance of the fact that it was actually January 2015. Continue reading