Monday, 3 October 2016

Pom- pommiest Icicle Stitch Scarf - Finished Project


A few weeks ago I purchased this beautiful Moda Vera Bouvardia yarn which was on sale.

It looked just delicious so I bought 2 balls without much idea of what I wanted to make. I did contemplate knitting with it to showcase the amazing colour changes, but found this pattern which I had pinned in Pinterest ages ago for an Icicle Stitch scarf. The Icicle Stitch is also known as the Larksfoot Stitch.
Icicle Stitch
Little Treasures has a pattern on this stitch which is probably showcased better when you are using plain colours, alternating with every row, but I wanted to give it a go.
Moda Vera Bouvardia Scarf

It was so satisfying to watch the colour changes. Surprising actually! The yarn looked icy and electric when it was in a yarn ball. Then came out quite different with the darker colours coming through much more strongly in the finished scarf.

Icicle Stitch Scarf


With the first ball, I pulled the end out from the centre and started crocheting out the colours, then when that ball was finished, I realized the 2nd balls colours matched by starting from the end on the outside.

This was fun as I was able to see the emerging colours from the outside inwards!

Moda Vera Bouvardia Spotlight



The scarf used up exactly both balls. But I still needed to finish off the ends. I am not a big fan of tassels so decided to make pompoms.



I had no Moda Vera left, so I searched my acrylic yarn collection and found some soft pink, mid pink and orange to make the pompoms.

crochet scarf icicle stitch

I finished just in time for an overnight trip to Phillip Island which can get quite cold at night. And it kept me super warm when Sonofagun No.2 and I braved the cold wind to see the Penguin Parade!

Larksfoot stitch


If you'd like to give this stitch/ scarf a go, check out the free tutorial on Little Treasures website. With clear instructions and lots of photos, it is super easy and quick to make!

Friday, 30 September 2016

A Day at the Royal Melbourne Show

We are reaching the end of a nice little 2 week break for the Spring School Holidays.

Normally during school holidays we don't do a lot. No, we do ALOT of nothing but vegging out watching movies and saying we're going to do stuff, then actually doing nothing.

These holidays we actually did some stuff. And I've enjoyed every day I spent with my crazy boys.
In the first week I took a deep breath, dipped deep into my meager savings and took the boys to the Royal Melbourne Show.

When we lived in Canberra, I never got around to taking Sonofagun No.1 to the Canberra Show, and now No.2 is old enough I thought it would be fun to check one out.

Now you know how a day out at these things go... It's long, crowded, shit weather, and you spend all of the dollars on crap while the kids whinge and you wish you never even bothered to battle crowds, fairy floss, outrageously priced rides and showbags.

I decided that was not going to happen.
I went a little crazy and made the choice to go on a week day when light rain was forecast. Crazy right? Not so crazy! 

I figured the crowds may be less. I also set a budget limit, pre-purchased our entry and ride passes online for the better discounts, and told the boys we would pace ourselves and enjoy the day.

The threat of rain and being a weekday meant the crowds were minimal. The best part was that it didn't rain all day! It was even a little sunny!

Here's the thing about Ferris Wheels. They look pretty and the idea of them is fun and romantic...
...but when you're stuck up inside one as it goes higher and higher, all I can think is, "I am in a nasty cage of death which is going to dislodge and I will fall in this death cage with my beloved children where we will all die a painful, horrific death all twisted and mangled in the metal. The kids thought it was 'fun'. Sickos.
 
We met some gorgeous pooches in the Dog Show area. Meet Penny the Boston Terrier!


I was a teensy bit star-struck as I found the Masterchef Building within the showgrounds which is used in the TV show Masterchef Australia which Sonofagun No.2 and I love watching every year.  There were lots of delicious foods in here...
 

How awesome to see the clock which the cameras focus on when judge Matt Preston counts down from and to the left, the gantry that some of the contestants watch the cooking competitions from.


After a day of Ferris Wheels, Showbags and ALL OF THE JUNK FOOD, the boys let me wander around the Art, Craft & Cookery Pavillion. So many wonderful entries! I took a stack of photos, more because I was cruising through at a quick pace and wanted to look at them again later. Would you like to see some?

There were lots of yarn bombed farm animals....

yarnbombing
 
yarnbombing

yarnbombing
 
yarnbombing
 
yarnbombing
 
I loved looking at the entries in the different Crochet Competition Divisions...

 
Crochet sculpture
I loved this entry of little pottery type crocheted vases.

crochet blankets sophies choice
There were quite a few entries of sampler blankets and even two Sophies Choice blankets. Here's one on the left which won 2nd place.


Crochet competition
This beautiful Crocheted Parasol was the 1st Prize Winning entry in the Open section. It was created and designed by Josephine Sciaccitano. Beautiful!
Crochet Sampler Blanket
This was one of my favourites! A sampler blanket which won Best in Show in the Junior section. The young girl named it 'Homework Procrastination'. Darling, as you grow and crochet, you'll realize that there is nothing more enjoyable than crocheting instead of most other things!!!
More from the Junior Section... Aren't the kids who crocheted these entries super clever???
Yarnbombing

You know I love goats. I used to live on a farm with goats. But their eyes look so bloody evil. Goats are cute. Goats eyes make them look like devil spawn. It's one of those confusing crazy Mother Nature things....
No one thought I was strange for posing with a Granny Square covered cow. No one at all.

This big, beautiful amigurumi Hippo won 1st prize in the State Award.


 And just in case you were wondering, yes I did check out non- crochet stuff! Would you like to see some?

These were some of the entries in the Junior Ceramics. I absolutely adored all of these!
It's so hard to photograph through glass. ALL THE DELICIOUSNESS! Preserves. Yummmy!
 Alright people. Prepare yourselves.... Check out the CAKES!!!!


This magnificient cake won 1st prize.


Decorated Alice Cake
There is so much detail, it's like porcelain!

I couldn't see the sign for this gorgeous cake but it seemed to celebrate Totoro and Studio Gibli movies. If you haven't seen it, I thoroughly recommend My Neighbour Totoro.

Not a cake, back to the yarnbombed animals: A Felted Pig! (Sounds like the name of a hipster bar in Brunswick...)




So I spent waaaaay too much money and we ate lots of food that was probably not very good for us, but despite braving the cage of death, it was a fun day!

After seeing all the wonderful entries in the Crochet competition, I'm thinking of entering something in next year. Have you ever entered anything in a show? I'd love to hear your experiences or tips!

 xox
Louise
The Red Haired Amazona


 

Wednesday, 7 September 2016

All of the Spring, All of the Colour & a Hot Physio

Spring!!!

One little word that makes me want to prance through meadows and shove my nose into every blossom I see.


I've been a super busy Amazona over the past month or so. Busy and not busy. The last half of winter saw me get whacked with a few health issues which meant periods of not busy-ness, then extreme busy-ness as I spent all my time trying to clean and play catch up with life from when I was incapacitated.

I've also been out enjoying the lovely Spring weather with bike rides and walks around the local lake and the Esplanade at the beach.






What? How did that get there? I swear I was walking for exercise and taking pretty pictures. I absolutely was not ever Poke Hunting....


I've even been enjoying some Spring colour in my garden...



And how's this for colour? Bear went away to the V8 Supercars in Sydney for a week. He missed me in his gorgeous, Beary way so upon his return he bought me these dyed Chrysanthemums from a REAL FLORIST (instead of a supermarket which he normally does but I don't mind because I love getting flowers no matter where they come from. It's sweet someone just made the effort, yeah?!).
I used to be a florist many moons ago and kind of am a bit snobby about dyed flowers but these are mesmerizing!
#nofilter !!!


I popped them in a vase with some double daffodils I bought a few days earlier....


Do you know how people says things happen in threes?

First I sprained my ankle. It was so silly. I put on a pair of those rocker sneakers so I could go for a walk, then walked out of the kitchen and turned my ankle. So dumb. And I didn't fall gracefully. I'm only 5 foot highish, but fell over like a baby giraffe with legs going in strange places. Then I'm on the floor saying, "OW OW F*&#*&*#ING OW!" while Sonofagun No.1 tries to help me up and over to the couch.

So that limited my ability to do stuff for a little while. Peeps who follow me on Facie may remember this photo.... So glam with the nail polish (although don't tell anyone but I only applied nail polish to that one foot for the photo. Then a day later decided I felt lopsided and did the other foot.)


Then after I was back at work for only one week, I caught the mother of all colds. It was horrendous! I thought after a day up at the snow I had sore muscles from snow play, but no my friends! It was just the beginning. Then came the aches, the shivers and high temperature. The hacking cough, the sore tummy muscles from the hacking cough. And then the weirdest thing. Day 3 of The Mothertrucking Cold From Hell I developed a bad headache and BURNING EYES!!! Can you believe it? My eyes were streaming and red and burning as if I squeezed lemon juice in them. Then finally after a week I was ok and it was back to work as well as trying to get the house back in order.

Then 5 short weeks after I sprained my ankle, I sprained it again. The same one. Yes. I am that uncoordinated with my appendages.

So I decided it was time to visit the physio.

I haven't been to a physio for over 20 years.  

So before my physio appointment, I went for a nice easy walk along the local beach. Nothing strenuous but it involved buying coffee, saying hello to random dogs being walked and losing track of time. I had just enough aforementioned time to race home, have a quick shower, squirt some moisturizer on my leg (just the one the Physio would be looking at) and race out the door.

My Physio was an extremely good looking young man called Ty. Ty asked me to take my shoes off.

It was at this stage I realized in my hurry to get out the door I hadn't made the crucial 'pretty foot' check.
My feet were clean but desperately needed a go over with a buffer, and my nail polish was last applied 5 weeks previously when I took the photo above of my 1st sprained ankle..

So now it was chipped and showed 5 weeks of toe nail growth. Gross.

Then after going through a few exercises, he said he was going to massage my ankle and would I please sit up on the love bed, er Physio bench, and roll up my leggings.

Soooo several blog posts ago I wrote a few sentences about how as a Red Haired Amazona, our leg hairs are like almost invisible, fairy gossamer threads of nothingness.

Not today. In the presence of the very good looking Ty the Physio they stuck out like wild, vicious cactus thorns.
He massaged my ankle while I sat up on the love bed, er Physio bench.
Then asked me to roll over and lie on my tummy while he worked on my calf muscle which was torn last year. I was wearing a short little sports skirt and leggings so I was sure this was modest enough to cover my rather wide ass.
He started working on my leg.

Oh.my.glob. I think my calf muscle had an orgasm from his kneading. He asked if he was being too rough.
I know that I thought "Oh yeah, you gorgeous man-child. Go hard." But hopefully I just said, "No, that's very good thank you."

Physio session finished, I booked in another for the following week and went home where I had to change so I could go out to lunch.

When I took off my leggings to switch to jeans I realized, that in my haste to leave earlier, I pulled on my crappy leggings meant for the bin. They had a rather large hole in the crotch. I desperately hoped that while Ty was massaging my leg from down that end of the table, he didn't glance up to see my rather large ass up the skirt with a hole in my leggings flashing my large flowery granny undies.

This is a moderately accurate depiction of Ty the Physio...

This week I made sure that legs were shaved, toe nails were cutely polished, legs and feet buffed and moisturized and there were no crotch holes in clothing. But if Bear notices later, we won't tell him it was for another man!

In Crochet Land I have been busy!

I purchased a wonderfully written Kamila Cardigan Pattern from Ling Ryan of Hooked On Patterns . The original shown in the pattern is a lovely grey, but I've gone a bit crazy with bright cotton stripes. Some of the Cottons are Patons 8Ply, and some are from a selection of Ultra Prima Cottons I purchased from Little Woolies stall at the Sheep & Yarn Show a few months ago.
I know stripes have a fattening effect but I really, really wanted a bright stripey cardigan! 

This pattern is so well written and easy to read. I have tried attempts at 2 other cardigans over the past 12 months. They were disasters! Confusing, they didn't turn out right. I'm not having any of those problems with Lings pattern. Thanks Ling!



I'm also finishing this bright lime green blanket for the Bears Cub. My Bear has cubs of his own. The youngest asked if I would make him a blanket in his favourite colours Lime Green & Yellow. I've thrown in a little bit of soft grey to tone it down a bit.



It is 12 squares of large green granny squares, then a row of grey in double crochet, followed by a row of single crochet in yellow. Then it will be all sewn together in a 3 x 4 grid. Possibly then edged in a few rows of moss stitch? Not sure yet.

Now I'm off for another walk down to the beach before I pick up the Sonofaguns from school!
xox
Louise
The Red Haired Amazona