Monday 29 May 2017

It's true...

Diamonds are forever, well at least they seem to take forever.   The hardanger cutwork diamonds on the table runner are taking a long time.   Five to go and this piece will be finito.
The next photo may show this complete, ironed and in situ.   We shall see.

Saturday 27 May 2017


Today I travelled across the city to visit the much advertised Woolfest Auckland.   In a large and somewhat gloomy old winery shed, turned into a gymnasium, a multitude of spinners, weavers, dyers and growers of artisan wools displayed their goods.   Not being an avid knitter like the DBEM I was able to resist temptation and merely admire.
However the mathematical precision of this rectangle loom weaving was a major temptation   Can you see the lady sitting in front left?   She was enthusiastic to explain to me how I could weave a lovely wool scarf.   It was tempting but I resisted and merely took the information.
Next around the corner was the Navajo Spinning lady.   I had never seen this before and was intrigued.  Rolling the spindle against her leg seemed to be the main technique and I wondered if that made one thigh thinner than the other.   She says no! The yarn was not an even ply but of a knobbly texture and she weaves it into wonderful fabric for vests, jackets, hats etc.

I am on the last stretch of the Hardanger Runner and tonight hope to get more of the cutwork completed.   There may be a finish to show soon.   And I have tacked up the next project :-)

Saturday 20 May 2017


What do they say? Measure twice cut once?  When I started the login for the pencil case I only eyeballed the width and in true Kiwi fashion "she'll be right".   But she wasn't!  Far too wide for a pencil case.
Nothing daunted I carried on, as if further depth would somehow negate the width problem.   It didn't!
So a quick trip to OfficeMax for a notebook and the pencil case will become the book cover.
Next I measured and tacked on a new base layout for a pencil case and made a start.   This WILL be a success - I hope.
And you know what - pattern darning such as this kogin has resurrected my old shoulder problems and I have a very painful right shoulder.   Don't tell the DBEM as I have to help her with her knitting quite often too😀
But I had a very enjoyable time with Ian Rankin last night - well worth the walk into the city and the student-filled bus home.

Friday 19 May 2017

Welcome Home

Today I took annual leave so as to devote a whole day to "life administration" and very successful it has been too.
A hair cut, shopping, dentist and then to collect my old friend Elna from the repair shop.
She is sewing quietly and smoothly and I am very pleased to have her back.   At a cost of $190 for her overhaul, I figure her upkeep to be $10 per year I have known her.   She's not an expensive friend:-)
Talking of friends, I did a favour for a colleague at work and she presented me with these beautiful tulips.   Feels strange to have Spring flowers indoors when outside the golden colours of Autumn are predominant.
Tonight I am off to the City for a date with Ian Rankin - well more honestly, he is to give a lecture as part of the Readers and Writers Festival and as an ardent Inspector Rebus fan I couldn't possibly miss a date with Ian.
Tomorrow I hope to have an update on the Kogin Pencil Case Fiasco....

Sunday 14 May 2017

And off we go...

Yesterday I made a start on the Kogin and am quite pleased with the way this is turning out.  The black thread looks a great contrast on the ecru linen
The front, or what I have determined as front is darker
But Kogin is great that the back looks as good as the front.
This is highly addictive.  I'm off to do some more now.

Wednesday 10 May 2017

The next "adventure"

Some years ago I received an embroidered pencil case from my boss' wife.   It has been in regular use in my handbag ever since.   But alas!  The inside has a plastic-feel fused lining which now is rather sticky to touch.   Time for a new one.
I dug through my stash knowing that I had no navy fabric suitable but this ecru lugana should serve the purpose.  
DMC perle #8 in black should give a suitable contrast.  And if I cannot imitate the embroidery from the case itself, this book of Kogin patterns should surely provide something :-)
I have microsuede for lining and a zip and matching binding so this little project will cost me nothing but time.
So when my hardanger is I go on Japanese kogin adventure.

Monday 8 May 2017

A bit of this a bit of that

The knitting made progress.   Well, to be more grammatically correct, I made progress on the knitting.  The back is finished which is the signal - time for some stitching.
So it's back to the green diamonds!   But the end of this project is in sight too.  This arrangement seems to be working for me.   A short break gives added impetus.
Tonight I planted some sweet pea seeds with which I hope to bring pleasure to the DBEM in a few months time.
And I cooked this ginormus lump of meat that the beef cattle on Little Brother's mini-farm generously gave me:-)   The DBEM and I will feed on this for several days!
Last weekend was my 6 weekly grocery shop.   The DBEM likes wheatmeal sandwich bread and although the "proper" brand is nearly $4 a loaf, home brand is $1.   But happy dance - on Saturday I struck a bargain.  Guess what is filling up my freezer now:-)   I've always been a little envious of the "yellow sticker" bargains my UK friends talk about as we never seem to get those bargains here.  For a producing nation, New Zealand food costs are high.   But on this occasion I won.  Hooray!
And now it's back to needle and thread.