Thursday, 1 September 2011

Buffy Swap October 2011

Right then my darling swapper, here is a list of all the questions and check ins in one nice place for you. I will also add links to any wish lists etc at the bottom. I will up date this regularly for you :o)

1) What kind of crafting do you do?
Knitting, spinning, jewellery making, sewing, soap making.
2) Fav colors/combinations
Black, jewel tones of purple/red/green/blue. Autumn shades of orange and yellow
3) Least favorite colors
pink & peach
4) Favorite fibers/yarns
Soft! I’m still pretty new to the whole fibre world and am always up for a new one. I likes soft things.
5) List some Small items you would like to have
project bags would be uber amazing. I also have a crazy love of buttons. Like obsessive crazy :o)
7) Things you don’t need or want
8) List as many sizes as you can
UK size 5 feet, small to medium head. I’m 5 foot 3 and have pretty small wrists
9) What is something you would like to receive in this swap? (keep price limits in mind)
The more handmade the better for me. I love that someone has put their own thought/love into an item.
10) Would you like the package to be a more detailed buffy theme or random buffy?
Anything Buffy is good.
11) Where do you stand on things like make up, nail polish, jewelry, and hair items?
Make up/nail polish - no. Jewelry/hair items - yes
12) Do you have any hobbies (other then fiber ones lol ex: reading, writing, photography, drawing ect.)
Love reading, photography, soap making and cooking.
13) Do you have pets or children who like to receive little things as well?
I have a 10 year old stepdaughter who adores presents hehehe
14) List anything else you think useful (we want your partner to have as much to go on as possible in order to make your package amazing and just right for you! )
15) Do you promise to b a good partner, fulfill all obligations, and send out a package made with just as much time care and love as the one you would like to receive?
I do indeed!

What kinds of handmade items would you like to receive?
Ooh now this is a tough one. I’d like something useful rather than something ornamental. Otherwise I am happy for anything!

Would you like to get some Buffy DVD’s, books or comics? If yes, what do you have or what do you want?
I don’t have the comic books and would like to start with them so this would be a possible idea for me. (Wow I find it hard to say, yes I would like this hehehe)

1) Fav buffy character/ why
Tough one this. I adore Spike for many reasons. He’s hot, obviously. But I Think he has the best journey through the series. He has the most self discovery and I like that.
2) Fav season
Probably season 6. It’s all getting going and ready for the big showdown.
3) Fav episode
Fool for Love or Beneath You
4) Have u read or would u b interested in the comics?
I haven’t started these yet and would love to.
5) Buffy books?
There are books? How did I not know about this. Yes I’d be interested, I loves books.
6) Buffyverse Quotes u use often?
Bored now. Wiggins
7) Fav big bad?
The Mayor or The Trio.
8) Do you like the show Angel as well as Buffy?
I watched the first few seasons and thought it was ok. Not a huge fan though. I loved Lorne however, he was ace.
9) Do u like buffy with angle or spike?
Spike definitely. Her and Angel were moody teenage love, Spike was grown up painful love. Neither is happy but I think her relationship with Spike had more to it.
10) Do u have any other fav character relationships?
I loved Willow and Oz, they were sooooo cute.

Do you have any specifications for how you like you gloves, socks, hats or shawls? i.e. length, thickness, materials
Gloves I prefer mittens with fold down tops. I love mittens but I take a lot of photographs do fold down tops are genius!

Socks I have a UK size 5 narrow foot so I would love a pair that flet snug. Usually my foot is flopping around a bit inside the sock hehehe.

I like mad hats. Earflaps and pompoms are good. Though something stylish might be nice for going out.

I’ve never owned/made a shawl. I have about elevnty million in my queue/favs and will get round to one soon. I’m only 5 foot 3 so nothing too long. Soft is good.

How do you feel about blingy, sparkly, or other “novelty” yarns? Not just typical novelties like fun fur, but also those with stellina content (Blue Heron Rayon Metallic, DIC Starry, Stroll Glimmer) or other “additives.”
I like shiny/sparkly! I can think of no purpose for fun fur in my life. I’d prefer my yarn to be smooth enough to knit a standard item like a scarf but I’m all for the interesting :o)

Would you like something from your partner’s region? Example: Georgia Peach Preserves.
Yes please :o)

Do you like/will you use straight knitting needles? Are you a circ only fan? How bout DPNs?
I have come to love circulars. They make knitting so much more transportable. I plan on only buying circulars or DPNs from now on.

If you have a pattern book (or any book) on a wishlist, will you accept a gently used version?
A hearty yes from me for anything my swapper would like to give me. I adore used stuff so bring it on.

Would you like your swap partner to knit/crochet/create something out of your favorites, or should we leave that stuff to you?
I would love that. I have so much stuff in there that is WAY beyond my skill level but is there because I like it and hope to one day be able to make it. Having one to pet while I was making it would be ace. :o) Edited to add: I will be emending everything in my favs/queue to have the tag "me" if I ever plan on making it for me so you know which ones are not ideas for other people :o)

Would you mind receiving yarn that is new but already wound into a cake /ball? How about unused leftovers?
Already wound is cool as is stuff in a skein. Leftovers are also pretty cool. I have a ton of scraps that I have plans for. I guess the scraps also goes for fibre as I’m a beginning spinner :o)

Would you like to receive something by/starring a cast/crew member of Buffy? For example and SMG film, other Joss project etc?
I would quite like to hear some of James Marsters music. I’ve never seen Dr Horrible’s Singalong Blog and would love to.

1) What are your favorite snacks, treats or drinks?I adore coffee, hazelnut flavour is a particular love. Fudge is a naughty treat for me :o)

2) What types of things do you knit or crochet?
Currently I don't think I have a fav type. I've only been knitting for a couple of years and haven't knitted much in that time. I love knitting washcloths at the moment and I really like anything with a cable. I loves cables.

3) What one pattern from your faves or queue are you itching to make but you haven’t the time, skill or supplies?
the veil of Isis is one I would love to be able to knit but I think it might be a bit to much for a first lace shawl hehehe. I've been looking at the Severus socks since I learnt to knit socks and have just not got the guts to start them.

5) Do you have an anti-wish list? Like allergies, annoyances, colors/fibers and overstocked notions.
I dislike things with synthetic fragrances with a passion. I have a bizarre hatred for the colour peach. Other than that I am pretty easy going. No allergies and I've not tried enough different fibres yet to know what I like or dislike.

What do you think about this design (not necessarily on a shirt, but something similar on a handmade item)? And if you like it, on what kind of item could you imagine it?It’s “And then Buffy staked Edward - The End”

Ooh torn. Buffy would, of course, kick Edward’s ass. But I will admit to liking the first book. What can I say, I love tragic romance. Though I did want to slap Bella most of the way through. Anyhoo, back to the question, I could go for that quote on things :o)

What width/length do you prefer your scarves?
I prefer thinner scarves as I seem to have a really short neck. Long is good but I am only 5 foot 3 so not too long hehehe

Do you need coasters or pot holders?
Coaster not so much. I would love pot holders though.

Would you rather have more handknit items or more purchased goods?
I’m quite happy with whatever my spoiler wants to give me :o)

If you have indicated that you would like an item for someone else, such as child, do they have any allergies to take into consideration?
I do have a 10 year old step daughter who I am trying (and failing) to get into Buffy. She has no allergies :o)

Non-US folks, if your spoiler happens to be from the US, is there anything in particular that isn’t available in your area that you’d like them to try and include?
Nothing in particular but something specific to the state/town you are from would be fab!

Do you have anything you want a cozy for?
Not that I can think of, no.

How do you feel about cross stitch? How about decoupage?
I love cross stitch. My Momma is amazing at it and I’ve never quite got the hang of it. Decoupage can be so very awsome :o)

1)what got you interested in buffy the vampire slayer?
My general love of vampires got me started. The progression of the characters kept me hooked :o)

2)do you watch a lot of joss’ other works?
I love Firefly but that is all I have seen so far. I did see some of Angel way back when.

3)would you b interested in or do you need a new note book or journal for knitting? (or other uses as you see fit)
A diary for 2012 would actually be incredibly useful right now. The kind with a page a day would be best.

4)if you had to knit with only one type of yarn for the rest of your life what would it be?
Ooh tough one. I think it would have to be a DK weight as this seems to be the most versatile. Something superwash. Twilleys Freedom wool is a favourite as it is so darn soft!

If you said you’d like jewelry, make-up, and or hair items…. what kind would you enjoy best?
I mostly wear earrings, dangles are good. Hair items I like combs and sticks. However my hair is very fine so please keep sticks/forks to 3-4 inches long at the most :o)

If you were Spike or Buffy, what would you have written on your knucks?
Spike - Sod Off
Buffy - Dust Time

Are you a tee shirt kind of person? If so, what size? Any no-no colors?
I only wear girly fit shirts. I could wear any colour if the design was good but as a general rule I avoid pink/peach/coral.

Do you like any particular patterns, such as stripes, leopard print etc?
I have an unreasonable love of polka dots. Especially red with white spots. I go nuts for it on anything!

Amazon Wishlist

Monday, 8 August 2011

I'm back.......I think

Wow it has been a while since my last proper post. Trying to balance everything in my life has been impossible so something had to give and I'm afraid it was the blogging. So I'm going to give you a bit of a catch up post here and then I should be back on the wagon.

This is Willow. She is about 8 weeks old in these pictures. She's now 14 weeks. She was a surprise present from Spadger. I came back from Woolfest and he dropped this little bundle of fur in my lap. That wasn't all though. She came with a hand woven willow ring tied to her neck and a marriage proposal. Yup, I am bethrothed. Squee does not even begin to cover it. We are planning to marry September next year.

So that's the most important news I have. Everything else in my life is pretty much knitting and stress. The theatre group I'm a part of is 10 weeks away from their next performance and the actor playing the lead has decided to leave us. Stress! I'm nearly 3 weeks overdue for a holiday. I like to have 1 week off every 12 weeks and I don't go til next week. I'm on count down now :o) But it means I'm uber stressed about everything now as I just need a break.

I've been starting to get into some sort of fitness routine. The amount of people that assume it is becasue I am getting married is ridiculous. It seems that getting fit has become so synonymous with loosing weight that you can't just want to get fit. I'd like to quote the actors from 300 "appearance as a consequence of fitness". This is what I am aiming for. I aint getting any younger and have a future of sorting out a homestead to look forward to. I needs to get fit. If I happen to look better beacuse of that then woot! I've moved over to a mostly paleo diet and have been going to Zumba with my mother. I've almost completed the 200 sit ups programme and have been trying to do a bodyweight routine I found on Nerd Fitness. I go for my first crossfit session this week.

On the knitting front Nerd Wars moves on apace. So far this tournament I have submitted 6 items each round and am still just about on track to finish my dissertation. Fingers crossed! The spinning is coming along well too.

I guess that's about it. Not very exciting really but that is kinda how I like my life.

Monday, 1 August 2011

Nerd Wars T2 R3

Well this just seems to be the place where I keep track of my NW stuff. I'll be back with proper posts I promise.

On with the Nerd Wars Challenges for this month.

Challenge (Intellectual):
WIP challenge.

Challenge (Technical): GUILTY PLEASURES
This month I am going to share a secret with you…a dirty secret that only my spouse knows and even he refuses to acknowledge….
I love Judas Priest. I honestly do! When I am home, alone, with no chance of anyone stopping by, I crank British Steel up to 11. Judas Priest is my private, guilty, guilty pleasure.
Now don’t be too quick to snicker and laugh because this month all of you are being asked to reveal your own guilty it applies to techniques that is.

This challenge is to make a project that exhibits a technique that you feel is your guilty pleasure. It could be a technique that feels almost like “cheating” like using variegated yarn or mosaic knitting to replicate fair isle. It could also be a preferred technique or work-around that you use every time rather than what a particular pattern may call for, like knitting in the round to avoid seaming or seaming to avoid using DPNs. A guilty pleasure is something personal to each Nerd Warrior undoubtedly there will be ways to meet this challenge that I have not yet thought of.

Last month I called you all out of your comfort zones; this month I want to celebrate them. Sometimes indulging in these “guilty pleasures” can make us feel like we are not “real” knitters, spinners, weavers, or crocheters. In reality though, no crafter is master or lover of all techniques and our personal tweaks and techniques are what actually does make us “real” craftspeople.

Were you taught one of your favorite crafts by your grandmother? (Or was she awful at crafts but did teach you how to be a mean shot with a rifle like dryad23 ‘s did?) Did your father or grandfather take you fishing and bait your hook for you? Did an older aunt bake cookies with you at holidays?

In our ever more busy and tech-ruled world, it’s sometimes hard to remember that many of our elders are lonely, bored, sick or depressed and can be overjoyed by the slightest attentions and demonstrations of respect or affection.

Your challenge is to donate something that will bring a bit of comfort (and hopefully joy) to an older person or to a nursing home, assisted living home, similar facility or an organization local to you that accepts and distributes such items to the residents of such facilities. The item must be new and clean, and does not necessarily need to be crafted by you.

You can also donate time for this challenge. Feel free to be creative. The spirit of the challenge is to somehow bring a bit of comfort and/or joy to the life of an older person who may not have very much of either one of those things;.

Challenge (Scientific): WAVES
Waves are all around us! Light we see, sound we hear, electricity we use, earthquake or tsunami events, even the particles we are made of are all wave phenomena!

In mathematics and science, a wave is a disturbance that travels through space and time, usually accompanied by the transfer of energy.1

Your challenge this month is to create something that incorporates waves, whether you play with them as a mathematical model or a natural phenomenon.

It’s there when you need it. Or maybe it isn’t, and then you have to go a-questing to get it. This month’s challenge is going to be all about the inventions that make life easier/better for your favorite characters!

Your challenge is to craft something inspired by a tool or invention from your nerdery.

Challenge (Nerd Culture): KNOW YOUR ROOTS
Think back. Think waaaaay back…

Whoa, not that far back. Think forward a little…a little more…there, stop. You are at the beginning. The beginning of a fandom. The beginning…of an obsession.

It’s 1977 and you’re standing in line to see this weird star movie with your parents. You have no idea what you’re about to experience…

It’s some week night in the past decade. Your favorite broadcast channel has been pimping this new show for weeks now, and you’re tuning in just out of curiosity…

It’s the late eighties, and your parents are hooking up this strange gray box to the TV. You’ve heard about it from your friends, but you have yet to experience the wonders within for yourself…

No matter what your fandom is, there is an old school. When I first heard the phrase “old school,” it was uttered with disgust and disdain, as though “old school” were something to discard or forget about. But as I’ve grown up, I’ve realized that my parents, their parents, and their parents’ parents did have a few right ideas…sometimes, just sometimes, it really was better in the old days.

This month, your challenge is to knit, crochet, or spin something that reminds you of the good old days of your fandom. Whether that means the first of many different series (as with Star Trek or Dr. Who), or the first season of a recent show (as with Supernatural or Bones), every show has a beginning, and every beginning deserves a little credit. After all, without it, there’d be no…now…or something.

Friday, 1 July 2011

Nerd Wars - T2 R2

No it's not some kind of lame Star Wars rip off, it's round 2! I know I keep posting what the challenges are and not showing you what I make. Well I'm kinda heading into Christmas present territory now so you might not see many pics. Sorry! This months challenges are as so:

Challenge (Team Spirit): IT'S FUN TO BE BAD

Every story has one. They’re the folks that give your stories something to fight against. Sometimes you envy them because they get to do and say all the stuff you wish you could say. They’re mean, they’re self-centered, and we love to hate them. Yup, this challenge is all about the Villains!

Your challenge is to create something for or reminiscent of a villain or bad guy (or gal!) in your nerdery.

Challenge (Nerd Culture): BIG (NERD) LOVE
A personal anecdote before we get to this month’s challenge. Like many of my fellow Nerd Warriors, I had difficulty selecting a team for Tournament 2. I like video games, yes, but I also like Lord of the Rings, Star Trek, playing board games, Firefly/Serenity, reading long book series, etc. I think I could play happily on at least a half-dozen teams and wish my cloning machine was working so I could. Alas, decisions must be made, but there is still that longing to hang out with other nerds who not-so-secretly want to be the Doctor’s next companion.

Your challenge for this month: switch teams! Well, not literally, of course, but you are tasked with making something representing a NerdWars team other than your own. When you applied for NerdWars, you were asked to list several teams you felt you might do well on. The time is now to show Elise that you were right.

If you are not sure what the other teams represent, take a moment to review the Team Description page. If you’re dead-set on loving your chosen nerd universe, I’d encourage you to try something new just for this month. I’m certain that every team would be happy to explain to you what they’re about and help you get started enjoying their universe.

A note on Team Spirit points: As this is will be a more difficult challenge to relate back to your own team, we’re going to try to reward those of you who really stretch to link your challenge to your home nerdiverse. To pick on my team a little, if a Team 1-Up member does a project based on an MMO for Team Epic, then claims Team Spirit because the MMO is a computer game, that will be worth one point. If one of Dumbledore’s Army can link their project to the Battlestar Galactica universe? Three points. Remember, Team Spirit is based on your home team, not on your project’s universe.

Challenge (Giving Geeks): PUPPY LOVE

Through some cruel twist of fate, most of our pets were not given thumbs. Unless you have a pet opossum - I am pretty sure those guys have thumbs. And some of those cats with extra fingers. ANYWAY, for most pets this is a huge bummer because they cannot knit, particularly for those pets who live in shelters, because jail is boring when you don’t have anything to do.

Your challenge is to do something for an animal to make that animal’s life better. Maybe it is donating a blanket to a shelter, making a toy for your mom’s ancient Siamese, or a little sweater for an otherwise naked dog. This challenge will also accept a donation of time: volunteering at a shelter, etc.

Challenge (Intellectual): MYTHS, MYTHOS, MYTHOLOGY
According to the dictionary, a myth is a traditional story, especially one concerning the early history of a people, or explaining some natural or social phenomenon, and typically involving supernatural beings or events.

Your assignment this month is to craft something that illustrates or is inspired by a myth.

Challenge (Technical): ALTERNATE YARNALITY
Get out those goatees and break out the plastic bags, newspaper, fabric strips or any other non-traditional “yarn”
That’s right! This round your mission is to seek out and find new materials to use as yarn. To boldly knit what no person was intended to knit before.
The requirements are to weave, spin, knit or crochet an item made from sources not typically used in yarn.** People have been able to spin plastic bag and newspaper strips into pretty awesome yarn. Perhaps you have your eye on some scrap copper electrical wire just asking to be reborn. I cannot wait to see if paracord and bailing twine makes an appearance.
The focus on this challenge is to seek inspiration from somewhere you normally would not, so feel free to ‘speriment with some off the wall choices. That being said, some commercially manufactured yarns have added small amounts of nontraditional items such as steel wire or sterling silver to traditional wool yarn. These types of yarns will not be accepted.
Good Luck and Have Fun!

** Evil is optional

Challenge (Scientific): SCIENTIFIC METHOD

Experimentation and data collection

You’ve done it a thousand times throughout your school career. This time it is for fun! Come up with a question and hypothesis for your craft, work it up and discover the results!

Submissions for this challenge should follow the scientific method format

Tuesday, 14 June 2011

A loss of sewing mojo

Oh dear reader, I've lost the will to sew. My life has been taken over by that fickle floozy, knitting, and her sister, spinning. I have a coat I promised a friend which I've still not sewn the muslin, a ton of summer clothes and the start of Christmas presents to do. I just can't find the will to start. I love sewing, I really do, but getting going is so hard. It's been ages since I did any and I think that is the problem.

What can I do?

Tuesday, 7 June 2011


Hello folks. Yeah I know I've been incommunicado again. But you're used to it now right? So what's my excuse this time? Well I blame obsession.

I have an obsessive personality. It's something I've been aware of for quite a while. I fall for things easily and hard. It was brought to my attention when I was backpacking round Italy. In Florence a group of us from our campsite went out one evening and we came across an artist working on canvases with spray cans. He was making the most amazing landscapes I have ever seen. One in particular I fell in love with. But it was an A3 canvas and I was only half way through a 5 week tour. There was no way I could take it with me even if I could afford it. I was devastated. One of the guys in our group told me I fall in love too easily.

He was right.

Obsession with things, people, places, memories is really easy for me. It's closely related to an addictive personality in my opinion. I fall for things and they become obsessions. As a general rule they are unattainable things, or unrequited loves. Things that will be tinged with melancholy because of this. It is this obsession and inability to let go that colours my personality. Fortunately not as much as it used to. It has been a very long time since I have felt obsessive about anything. But what has come along at the moment is so benign as to be hilarious. My current obsession? Buffy. Yup that's right, Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

Funny right? The thing is it's been 14 years since the show first aired. It ran between 1997 and 2003 which puts me at 15 to 21. So my formative years. I watched it from the beginning but missed most of the last series. I was about the same age as the characters so their journey was mine (minus the apocalypses). Watching it again I am struck by the characters, the psychology behind them. It is fascinating. And it is obsessive. I want to get to the end so I can know what happens but I also want to see where they go. I want to delve into their personalities. The characters I fancied as a young girl are now attractive on multiple levels. I identify with scenarios I'd never noticed before because I am no longer living them but looking at them one step removed. Like I said, it's fascinating.

So this is the reason I'm not around much at the moment. Too much Buffy to watch. Don't worry though, there are only about 11 episodes to go. Then you get to listen to me dissect them hahahaha!

Wednesday, 1 June 2011

Nerd Wars - T2

It's that time again. Time for me to do nothing but talk about knitting. But this time I am on a team. That's right, it's Nerd Wars Tournament 2! I'm on Team Hellmouth, the Buffy The Vampire Slayer team and we plan to kick ass. I'm gonna try to actually post as I go along this time so you won't get one huge knitted post :o)

Challenges for June are as follows:

Challenge (Nerd Culture): I SEE WHAT YOU DID THERE

Since 2005, one website has been grabbing your (and my) nerdy little eyeballs like few others, making you laugh, making you cry, making you ask “WTF?”: the great time suck of your late-afternoon work/study sessions, YouTube. You’ve seen the cartoons, the cute cats, the mashups, and the webseries. Your challenge now is to make something inspired by your favorite YouTube video.

  • No basic instructional videos. I don’t want you to justify a pair of socks because you watched a Judy’s Magic Cast-On How-To.
  • No clips of TV shows or movies, unless they’re more popular on YouTube than they ever were on their original medium. Be prepared to defend the increased popularity.
  • Music videos are okay with me, as are TV commercials that were clearly designed to be viral sensations.

Challenge (Team Spirit): THERE IS NO EYE IN TEAM

Let’s face it - you’ve been on this team much longer than Nerd Wars has been around. You have read, watched, and pondered all there is to mentally consume on your subject. Sometimes so much that you have weird dreams about it. And while you have team members all around you with similar experiences, your feelings about your geekery are singular.

Your challenge is to demonstrate what you love about your geekery. This challenge will show your teammates a bit about you, and demonstrate to others what your nerdy passion truly means to you.

Challenge (Giving Geeks): NO MORE NAKED NEWBORNS

Around the world, even in the richest countries, babies are born into very poor families, often without anything to cover them, protecting them from the elements and potential illness.

Your challenge is to donate a new baby item to an organization local to you that accepts and distributes such items to the families of these newborns. The item must be new and clean, and does not necessarily need to be crafted by you.

Many areas have such donation programs, and can be found by googling, researching in community newspapers, or posted on bulletin boards at grocery stores or town halls. You may be able to donate directly to local hospitals. If you have difficulty finding a local program, post in this thread to ask for help.

Challenge (Scientific): LIGHTNING

June 15, 1752, Ben Franklin conducted his famous kite experiment, proving lightning is actually electricity.

To honor Franklin’s June discovery, the June challenge is all about electricity!

Electricity (n): any phenomenon associated with stationary or moving electrons, ions, or other charged particles

Whether it is lightning, the current powering your computer, or the sparks that flash when your cat tries to curl up on a fleece blanket in the winter, electricity is everywhere! Let it inspire your creations this month!

Challenge (Intellectual): AN ADAGE A DAY...

“Nothing defines a culture as distinctly as its language, and the element of language that best encapsulates a society’s values and beliefs is its proverbs.”

“A proverb is a simple and concrete saying popularly known and repeated, which expresses a truth, based on common sense or the practical experience of humanity.” --Wikipedia

Every culture, tradition, and religion has its proverbs and adages. Some are elegant and poetic. Others are witty and humorous. Many convey much wisdom with just a few words. A quick internet search will yield a wealth of common maxims like, “A penny saved is a penny earned,” and “Honesty is the best policy.”

Your challenge is to craft something that illustrates or is inspired by a proverb/adage. Be sure to quote the proverb in you submission. If the origin of your adage is known, include that information as well.

Challenge (Technical): 3(DIMENSION)

You’re traveling through another dimension, a dimension not only of needles and hooks but of yarn; a journey into a wondrous land whose boundaries are that of imagination — Next stop, NERD WARS!

Your challenge this month is create a project that is three dimensional in some way. This can be though techniques or it can be in construction. Do not feel that you are limited to stuffed toys only. Cables, bobbles or other similar techniques qualify. Sewn on elements (like sewing crochet flowers onto a knitted cardigan) qualify just as long as both pieces are created from a Ravelry sanctioned craft. Spun yarn would have to have some dimension. While I am not a spinner, thick to thin yarn or nubby boucle comes to mind. I am not inclined to accept traditional lace projects for this challenge for while intricate and lacy, most are still rather flat. But if you feel you have a pattern or project in mind that fits, pitch the idea to me. I am open to a persuasive argument. Also, a project does not count as “three dimensional” just because it is worn around your body…no matter how nicely you fill it out!

Next post - My projects for each challenge.

Friday, 27 May 2011

Just a good picture

I know it's been a while again and I'm really not here with anything of great importance. Just an image from our epic Buffy re-watch. We've finally hit season 7 and have watched all the ones I've previously seen. Including the one that left me with a lasting image. The image below in fact. I just think it's a lovely still, a really nice use of light.

Sunday, 8 May 2011

Ooh it's been a while again. Sorry folks. Things haven't been that busy I've just not been feeling all that great and happy. So the blogging tends to take a hit. Ah well I'm back, and with pics too.

It's lambing time at the farm and as always there are a few lambs who's mothers just aren't interested. This means bottle feeling and lots of cuddles from willing volunteers.

There is nothing like a bit of lamby cuddles to make a rubbish week at the office seem a million miles away. Wriggly and sheepy smelling and just adorable.

The other thing about this time of year is the interesting flower life. Now every gardener hates dandelions, especially when they start seeding. But look how pretty they are.

The chives have started to flower and this means they're not really any good for eating now but I adore the flowers. Purple and weird looking.

They're even better close up. Almost alien.

Once we'd finished at the farm me, Momma and Spadgersdottier took a little walk along part of the nature trail to pick some bluebells (with the farms permission) and look at the wild garlic flowers. The combination of the blue and the white is quite nice. I like how the 2 flowers are so different. Bluebells are all soft and curvy, wild garlic is bright white and spiky.

And last picture, a butterfly that was very accommodating until Spadgerdottier decided to run past yelling for someone. The butterfly flew off in disgust :o(

Wednesday, 27 April 2011

Colourful soap

I tried my hand a coloured soap again and this time it worked. We all remember the ill fatedgreen soap. Started out pretty green as per the post, faded to a barely there sickly colour. Most disappointing.

This time I have made 2 coloured soaps. I've had 2 jars of oil infusing for months. One with turmeric and one with paprika. The turmeric turns the soap a golden ochre colour. The paprika? Well have a look.

Yup, orange. Bright almost neon orange. I am so very pleased. The paprika was strained out of the oil before making the soap (stingy on the membranes me thinks!) while the turmeric was left in. You can see a little smear of turmeric if you look closely.

Next up is another attempt at nettle green and a surprise bar. What's that, you want to look at the orange again? Can't say I blame you :o)

Momma's Dress

A while ago my Momma asked me if I would make her a Regency dress and jacket if she decided to go in costume to a themed wedding. I said yes and heard no more of it because she couldn't make her mind up. 9 weeks before the wedding she decided yes, she did want to dress up. Eep says I but I also said yes.

At least 2 weeks were spent waiting for the pattern. Then there was a couple of weeks of fitting. Then the sewing. In all fairness it wasn't that hard a pattern it was just time consuming. I think that maybe there could have been more fittings but in the end it did fit. So I present to you the Regency dress and Jacket (and my Momma)

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

The Nerd Wars catch up post

Hey all. So I've been missing for a while again. I know, I know. But I spend all day in front of a computer and just haven't been able to muster up the desire to sit at one when I get home. Forgive me?

I've decided to d a bit of a Nerd Wars catch up. I don't think I posted a single thing from the last round.

Challenge (Technical): POLYTECHS
For this one we had to combine another craft skill with our 4 sanctioned crafts (knitting/spinning/crocheting/weaving). I went with sewing and made a little bag, a handkerchief which I embroidered and then knitted a doll. I only got half points for this as it is unfinished.

Challenge (Scientific): CAPILLARY ACTION
Make something demonstrating capillary action. the example give was frost flowers so I knitted what is hopefully a baby hat using a lace pattern called frost flower. I say hopefully because it came out smaller than I would like. If not I have a cunning plan to turn it into a present for his Mama (yes Lisa this is you).

Challenge (Giving Geeks): WIP HELP
To help someone with a work in progress that they are unable to finish due to illness, age, it has been passed to you due to them passing away etc. I asked if I could do something slightly different by helping my friend knit many squares for a blanket. She is fairly new to knitting, the blanket was for a production she is running with a group she works with for adults with learning disabilities and the blanket will probably be donated to a homeless charity afterwards. This was accepted. I think the furious knitting of these squares was most likely responsible for my strained wrist.


Knit in public time. Show the non knitters what fun they are missing out on. In one evening I knitted in the Victorian tiled cafe at the library and at the bar where I was meeting friends before going out. I nearly knit at the ballet in the interval but the pattern was too complicated to just whip out.

Challenge (Team Spirit): IN LIKE A LION, OUT LIKE A LAMB

Make something inspired by an animal. I got on with making Spadgersdottier's birthday present thus avoiding the horror that is finishing it the night before like at Christmas. He is now hiding in a drawer :o)

Challenge (Intellectual): WARRIOR'S FRIEND
Craft a shield or something that shields. I made the 2nd sock to go with the one I made for the last round. Now you may remember that these socks were for me and I said it was a bit big. Turns out that a "bit" translates as not fitting my size 5 feet but fitting Spadger's size 10 feet. Ooops. The reason? My smallest needles were actually 2 sizes too big for the pattern. I thought the gauge was loose. Should've checked really. Ah well, he likes his new socks.

And that's about it. The 3rd and final round for this tournament has begun but I haven't entered anything yet due to resting my wrist. I have a few submissions ready now but the lack of computer love has meant me not posting them yet. I will do soon tough so keep posted for more yarn based goodies.

Friday, 8 April 2011

I knit so I don't kill people

I saw this on a t-shirt not long ago. I thought it was amusing. A week of enforced none knitting due to whatever the heck is wrong with my wrist has proven that knitting does, in fact, equal calm. Busy busy workplace and nice weather should mean relaxing knitting outside in the sunshine. Nope. None of that.

Ok so no knitting. Maybe some spinning? No go either. How about carding? Nope,also a bust. I can just about sew which is good for the outfit I'm making my Momma but that is about the limit of my crafting. Watching me try to thread the needle on my machine should be a specator sport it's that funny.

So how am I typing? Slowly is the answer :o(

Wednesday, 6 April 2011

Yesterday was busy (written on the 6th)

I'm really wowing you with the imaginative titles huh? Must try harder.

Yesterday was indeed busy though. I'm working on a mammoth project at work and it is killing me. So very busy indeed. Add into that the dress and jacket I'm making for my Momma. A small sprinkling of not sleeping tops it all off. So very tired.

On the plus side the dress is all ready for fitting. There are 3 lines of sewing and the fastenings to do. I then have the jacket to sew. Momma has volunteered to help with that. She's getting jumpy about how little time there is left to finish it. We've got until the 14th. I don't think she realises how much I have sewn in less time before. But the quicker it is done the sooner I can relax.

Tuesday, 5 April 2011

This is not going well

OK so I've missed another day. This is not going well. But again I have a good reason. Yesterday was in from work, make tea, head out to see Derren Brown. No blogging time at all. Also uber busy at work so no time there. This is a sneaky one.

I'll try to be back later today.

Sunday, 3 April 2011

So I'll post everyday in April......huh

Ok so I fell off the blogging wagon on say 2 but there is a good reason. Yesterday was manic busy.

We got up early to go to the farm. I'm afraid we had some unpleasant business to attend to with the last chicken from our first batch, Pius. I'm not going to go into the details, if you're interested read Spadger's account here. Needless to say Pius is no longer with us in flapping form. A sad day indeed.

We spent a long day at the farm. Me and my Momma cleared a whole bed of the nettle infestation that was living there. I love pulling up nettles. They fight back and you get a real sense of accomplishment when it's all gone.

It was then home for a very quick shower and into town where we grabbed a bite to eat, a couple of pints and then off to a gig. We actually went to see the support act, Admiral Fallow. You can find out more about them here. We've been to see them twice before. First time they were supporting Frightened Rabbit, then it was a gig of their own. Walking out after the support act was fun. We had to explain to 3 members of staff that yes ewe were indeed leaving not popping out for a smoke. Their faces were priceless.

Since that finished quite early it was home for a rum, some date and walnut flapjack and 2 episodes of Buffy.

See what I mean? Am I forgiven for not blogging?

Friday, 1 April 2011

Nerd Wars - round 3


Your challenge this month is to Finish those WIPs! Here’s the breakdown:

It can be ANY work in progress, not just a project you didn’t finish for Nerd Wars. Simply “finishing” (sewing up, weaving in ends) will not count as completing a WIP.
Before and after photos are required.
Competitors may turn in up to 2 (two) projects. If multiple projects are submitted, each will be worth 5 points. Projects must be turned in at the same time, to ease CD grading.
There will be no Team Spirit points awarded this round. However, bonus points from the Independent Referee will be.

Challenge (Giving Geeks): EARTHQUAKE & TSUNAMI RELIEF

The earthquake off the coast of northern Japan, and the consequent tsunami has been devastating. The events that followed, and continue to transpire in regard to both the aftermath of nature’s wrath, as well as the nuclear emergencies and other effects of the destruction of man’s creations, are hard to comprehend.

What we can comprehend, however, is the innate desire to help other people, particularly in the face of such tragedy. Your challenge is to help.

Options for completing this challenge:

Knit/crochet a pattern from p/hop and donate to MSF Doctors Without Borders. Participate in a month-long KAL, then donate based on how much you enjoyed the pattern. Another thread will be opened for this option as people work through the patterns together. Please post your results in this thread for points.
Participate in the Nerd Wars eBay charity auction, with 100% of proceeds going to Japan Earthquake and Tsunami Relief Fund - a GlobalGiving Project. To do this, post in the thread a photo of what you want to put up for auction, as well as a description. The item MUST BE a) knitting related (a handknit item, yarn, stitch markers, etc.) and b) of value. This is not a yard sale. Your photo and description will be used in the eBay listing. PM eyeamelise for an address to ship the item to. To make things more streamlined, eyeamelise will be shipping out all the auction items to the winning bidders. Once eyeamelise receives your package, you will be awarded points in the thread, along with the link to your auction item.
Donate directly to the Red Cross. You can text REDCROSS to 90999 in the United States to donate $10. Or, send a check made out to the Red Cross and send to Knitting Fever, the US distributor of Noro yarn. They will match your contribution before sending it along to the Red Cross. Your employer may also be matching donations. Ask. Donate. The 1000 Amigurumi Crane Project is also donating to the Red Cross in several ways. Check it out here. (Thanks to unforth who came up with this.
Donate socks to Socks for Japan. You can craft them or not, but they must be new, and each pair in their own zip-top baggie. You will be shipping them directly to Japan, so please keep in mind that this may be expensive - you may wish to band together with other Nerd Warriors in your area to save on shipping costs.
No matter what option you choose, or if you cannot participate in this challenge, please spread the word about the different ways we are trying to help, such as links to the auction, the 1000 crane project, etc.

The options above also are mostly guidelines - if you have another charity or way to help Japan, let us know and go for it. We are trying to do the most good with the amazing people in Nerd Wars.

Ninja Warriors are also invited to submit their projects right in this thread, so we can be most aware about all the ways we can help folks affected by the earthquake and tsunami.

Challenge (Nerd Culture): READING RAINBOW

From the time I was a little nerdling, I have loved to read. When I read, I can be anything (unlike sleep, where I’m a viking), or go anywhere. While I don’t specifically remember this happening, the first book I read on my own was Are You My Mother. My paternal grandmother, rather than being impressed by her grandchild’s mad skillz, spent hours quizzing me on the book, convinced I had just memorized it.

Since then, I’ve been known to read almost anything I can get my hands on, and little gives me more sustained pleasure than finding a new author. I also know that most of my friends are the same way. Especially the nerdy ones. Okay, who am I trying to kid? All of my friends are nerdy. Fine.

Most stereotypically, nerds I know love either sci-fi or fantasy -- knowing that there is a difference, thank you very much Mr. Bookseller who puts Heinlein and Tolkein on a shelf together -- and I’ll confess to enjoying many a book just because it had a dragon or a spaceship in it. Other friends love mysteries and detective novels, or horror books, or spy novels. In fact, I’d wager that every one of you has a favorite genre of fiction, and I suspect that if I were to poll 50 Nerd Warriors, I’d find 50 different favorite books.

Your challenge this month is to create something literary or literary-adjacent. The limits to this challenge, as with books, are your imagination. Almost any sort of fictional literature will be acceptable as base material, from high literature to pulp fiction to comic books to bodice-rippers, and nearly everything in between. Your Friendly Neighborhood CDtm will also consider dramatically-told nonfiction on a case-by-case basis.

If you create an object for a character in a book, please include an excerpt from that book which describes either the garment you are re-creating or some element of the character’s personal style which led you to believe that your object is a good fit. If you create a cover for a book -- with, say, an intarsiaed bunny for that worn copy of The Velveteen Rabbit that you’ve had since you were three -- please include a picture of the book with the cover.

Feel free to ask questions about this challenge of the GameMaster, Challenge Dacascos or Independent Referee in this thread.

Begin and end the project in this month.

Challenge (Scientific): Hydrothermal Vents and Deep Sea Communities

Hydrothermal Vents are like chimneys in the ocean floor, spewing out minerals and sulfides which quickly precipitate out of the water making the chimneys taller over time.

They create nutrient rich water which result in a whole ecosystem that can support life without sunlight. The Chemosynthetic bacteria that thrive around Hydrothermal Vents attract other critters such as wee crustaceans and tube worms, which in turn become tasty vittles for shrimps, crabs, and octopuses.

For this challenge create something inspired by the deep sea and abyssal zone life and geological characteristics.

Feel free to ask questions about this challenge of the GameMaster, Challenge Dacascos or Independent Referee in this thread.

Begin and end the project in this month.

Challenge (Technical): SIZE MATTERS

With all due respect to Yoda (and to men everywhere), size does matter. Size affects the form something can take and the forces that act on it. For example, the size of an ant lets it take the form it does; if an ant were the size of a person, it wouldn’t be able to hold itself up. Similarly, an atom and a solar system may appear to have similar forms, but they are governed by vastly different forces.

Your challenge this month is to craft something at two different scales. You must use the same pattern for both items. The pattern should be changed as little possible (instead change yarn and needle/hook size), although minor adjustments for proportion (e.g., shorter sleeves and wider neck opening for a baby sweater) are acceptable. The components of the two items should be at the same scales as the items (e.g., the number of stitches should be the same in both items, or the number of plies should be the same in both yarns). Buttons, zippers, beads, sequins, etc. should be matched to the scales as closely as possible, but need not match exactly.

The scales of the two items must differ by at least a factor of two (i.e., the big item must be at least twice the size of the small item; the items would have a ratio of at least 1:2). Scales should be determined using linear measurements (e.g., height or circumference); spinners should use wraps per inch.

One of the two items must be begun and finished this month. The other item can have been begun and finished at any point. However, the two items must be photographed together.

Challenge (Intellectual): HAVE A PIECE OF PI

Most people are familiar with the concept of Pi. There is something quite magical about Pi. Take ANY sized circle. Create a ratio of the diameter to the circumference and you will get Pi.

π = C/D

Pi is also equal to the ratio of any circle’s area to the square of its radius.

π = A/r²

Not only is Pi an irrational number, but it is also a transcendental number. The decimal representation of Pi never ends nor repeats.

π = 3.14159265358979323846264338327950288419716939937510…

Pi has been calculated to over a TRILLION decimal places and still no end or repeating sequence has been found!

Your challenge this month is to somehow demonstrate the concept or some aspect of Pi in a project. This can be literal, theoretical or symbolic. Creativity is encouraged!

Tuesday, 29 March 2011

a long walk

Well it felt like it anyway. It's about a 3 mile walk to work for me and I swear to all that is holy it's all up hill. And it's all uphill on the way home too. Yes I am aware that this is impossible but the uphill bits really are killer! It's along busy roads and is noisy and filthy. But there is a section along a municipal golf course and there are many blossom trees along the way. My walk was full of daffodils and blossom and birds tweeting. It's all about what you choose to look at.

I watched the sun change from a red sliver behind a cloud to a glowy ball of fire until the clouds swallowed it again.

I used to always have music when walking. I don't bother now. I like to listen to what is going on in the world around me. I love it when you get those rare moments where there are no cars and all you can hear is the stop of people's feet and the birds. It only ever lasts for a moment but it's wonderful.

I'll be walking home as well to night so I'll have clocked around 3 miles. Here's hoping the rain holds off.

Sunday, 27 March 2011

Cleanliness is next to......erm

So I have just finished cleaning/tidying the house. It is the tidiest it has been for months. Please don't judge us. Our house is fairly small and very crammed with stuff and we are generally busy. The tidying is never a top priority.

Feels nice to have it done though.

I'm gonna grab myself a juice. Can't remember my last drink today and my throat is scratchy dry. Never good. Then I need to fill in my Census form and after that well, I might just get on with trying to finish my Nerd Wars projects. I've been very lax in filling you all in on this round so expect a big post soon on that.

Friday, 25 March 2011


I am, rather successfully you will note, avoiding doing the washing up right now. I will get round to it before Spadger gets home. Bit right now I am trying not to fall asleep.

Last night was the auditions for my AmDram groups latest production. We're doing The Importance of Being Earnest and I'm directing. This meant I was in charge of the audition and spent 2 hours judging people. I was sat on my ass the whole time, no idea why it was as exhausting as it really was!. Then I didn't sleep much last night and what sleep I did get was full of weird dreams. So yeah, sleepy now.

I walked home from work as Spadger wasn't at work today. I took a moment to walk on a wall. When did that stop being fun? Never apparently. I grinned the whole time. I also love the fact that I'm sure many other grown ups gave me funny looks for doing it. I like messing with the adults!

*sigh* Supposed I'd best go wash up then.....

Thursday, 24 March 2011

And I'm back

Ok so I've been a bit MIA of late. I'd like to say I've been busy (which I have been) but that's not the reason for the lack of posting. I've been out of sorts. There has been family stuff, which I ahve decided I'm not going to go into here. Let's just say my already broken family got a little bit more broken and leave it at that. But I'm feeling much better. Things are still broken but I feel better about it now. So let's leave it at that.

I plan on trying to post something every day of April to try and get back into the swing of writing. Be prepared to be bored my friends.

Sunday, 20 March 2011

Today I have...

Cooked 1 quiche, 2 loaves of bread, 7 jam tarts and 2 batches of flapjack.
Peeled, sliced and dehydrated all the remaining garlic bulbs from last year.
Set a ton of wild garlic dehydrating.
Helped a friend with a film he's making.
Hung laundry out for the 2nd day running.
Avoided ironing.

Not a bad day really.

Thursday, 17 March 2011

Why today is a good day

There was actual sky visiable rather than the thick fog/white sky full of rain that there has been for the last 2 days. The next street was once again there!

I turned the heel of my 2nd sock and joined the whole thing back together again in my lunch break. Very speedy for my 2nd ever heel!

I got my unopened emails at work back to a manageable number after a major project I'm working on went live. The last 2 days it has been over 50!

I'm going to a gig tonight that I have been looking forward to since before Christmas.

I got the muslin for my Momma's dress/jacket completed last night so can enjoy the gig without guilt that I should be sewing.

Saturday, 12 March 2011

Signs of spring

First lot of washing outside
Sapling cherry tree in the greenhouse
The blueberry bushes survived the winter.
The rhubarb is growing well though we won't be picking any this year (sob)
Crocuses :o)

The wild garlic seems to have survived the removal of the shady tree so far
Spiders are ever present
The roses have started to leaf
Blue skys and everything is in bud. Definitely spring!

A bit of support

Today I'd like to talk support. Boobie support. So gents this might not be one for you.

I'm a big fan of being well supported. The fact that my support is engineered may have something to do with this. The girls are substantial :o) I don't understand current measuring systems. Measure back size then add 4 or 5 inches. Do these people not understand that the back strap is the one that does all the work! How adding that much to it can be right I do not know. I don't do this. My back measures 33 inches. This means I could either go with a 34 or a 32. I actually use the 32 even though it means a couple of uncomfortable weeks because it means they last longer. Once you get past a certain size these babies are not cheap. Next is your cup size. Measure the fullest part of your bust and take the back size off that. For every inch bigger your FB measurement is you add a cup size. So in my case this is 10 inches. Now this is where it all gets a bit fuzzy. Because that equation is dependent on the maker of the bra and the style. I generally wear a 32J but that can change depending on the bra. You should just grab a variety and go try them on.

The back strap should stay level and not ride up. A new bra should be worn on the loosest hooks. There should be no over spill on the cups, even on a low cut bra. If you manage all that then it fits, go buy it.

Your next issue is how long it will last. I hold my hands up and say I wear them far too long. I know I am over due for them when my back starts hurting. It's a lot of weight to be carrying if you're not doing it right. So here is some photo evidence of how much strain this wonderful piece of engineering is put under and what is does to the bra.

The top one is the new one (you can tell by the shiny colour hehehe) . Look at the difference in shape caused by the elastic in the old one being shot.
Look at how much the back strap has stretched. It is sitting I have worn it on all 3 sets of hooks and now it is totally knackered.
The side panels no longer sit where they should. They are all squished and dig into my side.
The left picture is in the old bra. The right picture in the new. Spot the difference? Perkier by far don't you think? My clothing is sitting better and my back no longer hurts. They might not be the cheapest of things in the world but they are definitely worth the money. I get fitted at Bravissimo. They don't use a tape measure, it's all done on how it looks and feels. They only do from a D cup upwards so if you are smaller than that I would recommend taking a morning or an afternoon, going to your fave lingerie shop and treating yourself to a trying on session. You may find that you need to come down a back size (or 2) and up a cup size or so.

Friday, 11 March 2011

You are not forgotten

Hey guys. Just a quick one to let you know I have not abandoned you. I have many posts in the works, even taken pictures fo them. But there is stuff going on in my life that is making me not have the energy to oomph to write.

I'll be back soon!!!

Tuesday, 1 March 2011

Nerd Wars - Tournament 1 Round 2

And so the 2nd round of Nerd Wars began this morning. I'm gonna try really hard this round to use projects I need to get done as part of it. Below are the challenges. I have ideas for the Intellectual, Team Spirit and Scientific. I'm just running them past one of the mods before I start to see if they would qualify. Squee, the excitement. I finished the 1st month with a respectable 2.5 points. Considering I've never really done anything to a deadline like this I'm quite proud.

Challenge (Intellectual): WARRIOR'S FRIEND
Craft a shield. Spinners, find a picture of a shield (historical or fictitious) and make something reminiscent of its colours. Or, if you can think of another answer to this riddle, craft that. Make sure to explain what your answer is and why you chose it.
Craft something that will protect you from something unpleasant or undesirable.
Craft something that will protect an object that is important to you from something unpleasant or undesirable.

Challenge (Team Spirit): IN LIKE A LION, OUT LIKE A LAMB
If you haven’t heard, March is the month that comes in like a lion (blustery, cold, and harsh) and goes out like a lamb (mild and temperate). This month’s challenge pays homage to that saying.

The Challenge: Create something inspired by this saying.

* Make something inspired by an animal or animal-like being. Werewolves need love too, you know!
* For those without animals in their nerddom, play off the hard and soft duality of the saying. Perhaps that gruff space pilot has a soft and gentle heart?

Your challenge this month is to spark wonder in your home towns and cities by performing your art in public. You may choose to submit photographic or video evidence of yourself knitting, crocheting, spinning, or weaving in public (from either a third- or first-person view, if you’re camera-shy), or by summoning a minor Yarnstorm of your own. Knit colorful flowers to stand by the side of the road until their organic counterparts take over. Crochet that One Tree on campus a sweater. Fill those who view your art with wonder, and help spread your nerdery to a new audience!

Challenge (Giving Geeks): WIP HELP
Some projects take what seems like forever, even if they are small. My friend’s mother had a pair of thumbless mittens sitting on top of her knitting basket for years, and now she is so shaky with her ailments she cannot do the simple task of finishing the thumbs. It took a gentle touch to get her to allow my friend to take the mittens and finish them up.

Your challenge is to finish a WIP for someone who can no longer do it themselves, from age, injury, or illness. The person does not need to be elderly - it can be a peer who has broken a hand, but needs to finish the WIP on a deadline. The size of the WIP is unimportant - what is important is helping someone finish a project.

This challenge is not for completing your own WIPs.

Challenge (Scientific): CAPILLARY ACTION
Capillary action is responsible for moving groundwater from wet areas of the soil to dry areas, creating that pesky meniscus when measuring liquids for cooking or science projects, and what Bounty tries to maximize to be the quicker picker upper. It is the ability of liquid to flow against gravity. It is one of the qualities that makes water a unique compound.

In this challenge, you must find inspiration in capillary action. Whether it is from capillary action in nature, kitchen, or otherwise.

Challenge (Technical): POLYTECHS
A polyglot is someone who is able to speak or write in several languages. It comes from Greek, meaning many tongues.

A polytech (made up by me from Greek meaning many techniques or arts) is someone who is able to craft using many techniques (spinning, knitting, crochet, quilting, needle felting, tatting, etc.). Your challenge this month is to demonstrate your proficiency in multiple techniques by combining two or more to produce a single finished object. One of the techniques must be from the Rav-sanctioned four (spinning, knitting, crochet, weaving), but the other technique(s) can be any craft of your choosing.

Thursday, 24 February 2011

Almost there

Ok so sorry for the down post yesterday. I'm not feeling much better today to be honest but I'm trying to be objective. Last minute rehearsal last night revealed several people still struggling with lines. Some more so than others. One in particular! Two of the main ones struggling are the ones who my lines tend to follow so I'm failing as my cues aren't there. Dress rehearsal tonight so we'll see how they do when they can't come out of character and have to muddle through (if they can manage that!).

I have big plans to do nothing on Saturday. Not even go to the farm. As much as I love it I want a relaxing day doing nothing of importance to anyone but me. Selfish I know but I've done so little recently that I've enjoyed or that was only for me. I want to finish my sock. I'd like to do some spinning. I'd like to make some kind of pudding for me and Spadger and sit down and enjoy it. I want to drink the bottle of wine someone bought me as a thank you for fixing their hat (sharing obviously). I want to relax.

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Is it Christmas yet?

Is it Christmas yet? I only ask because that is a time of holiday and I could really use a break. Life it just a bit mental at the moment and not all of it is good. I am exhausted, physically and emotionally. I really would like a rest.

The AmDram group I am part of puts on it's one performance this Friday. Two short plays, both of which I am in. We only have 8 members so it has been a hard slog at this. I will be very glad when it is over. It actually stopped being fun about 4 months ago. When you have so few people you feel it really quickly if people don't show to a rehearsal or aren't learning their lines. We only have the one performance so I hope plenty of people come and see it. As nervous as I am it would be a pain to have gone to all this effort and have no one turn up. Tonight is an emergency run through. Tomorrow is the dress rehearsal. Then the performance. Three evenings out of my week for something I'm not really enjoying. Madness.

I've agreed to make a Regency dress and jacket for my Mum which I now have only 7 weeks to complete and she still hasn't had the pattern delivered. Eep says I. I know I'll be able to do it but I'm a little bit nervous now.

There are a few family issues at the moment. I don't really want to talk about them yet but I'm sure I will. Seems wrong to only share the good things of my life with you all.

Work is.....well it's work. It's not a homestead so I'm not going to be happy. Plodding along though. I'm in the midst of tidying and sorting which I like doing so that's not so bad. My ipod and a ton of filing :o)

So, 304 sleeps til Christmas then.

Sunday, 20 February 2011

Nebulous - complete

Here is my latest submission to Nerd Wars. Here is the gorgeous Blue Face Leicester fibre that I bought myself for my birthday. I've been really wary of spinning it as it is so pretty. I didn't want to mess it up. But I took the bull by the horns for the honour of Ninjas! This was my interpretation of the Orion Nebula which is my favourite.

I'm finally starting to get the hang of this whole spinning thing. I managed to get 166 yards out of this 100g of fibre. It's fairly fine (I've not checked the wraps per inch yet) and is pretty even. I really do love spinning.

Thursday, 17 February 2011

Eco Quilt - blocks 2 and 3

Ok so I fell waaaay behind with this. The knitting and spinning has taken over my life. But I forced myself to get back on track and made 2 blocks from scratch in one night.

Block two's theme is the ties that bind us. Most people have gone for family and friend and love, those kind of things. I've gone for memories. I'm one of those folks who spend a lot of time in the past and my memories are sometimes more vivid than my present. This block is made from white fabric from a random source, red from a remnants shop in the city I went to university at and green from the first item of clothing I tried to sew and failed in my first year of uni. I started cutting the diamonds while still at uni, I was going to make a harlequin bag. But it never happened and many of them got lost. I cut a load more for this block and kept them just as wonky as the originals to keep the stars all kinds of lopsided as they would have been had I been sewing with the original diamonds.

The 3rd block title is K.I.S.S. Keep It Simple Stupid. I decided to go for a simple pin wheel block. The floral fabric is leftover from a dress I made to wear to a friend's wedding, the red is left over from my Lady Grey coat. They don't quite meet right in the middle but it's not too bad.

AS with the 1st block I've managed to make these 2 a little big again. I'm gonna leave them for the moment. If all my blocks end up this size I'll just adjust the border strips to match when piecing it together.

Monday, 14 February 2011

The evils of strawberry plants

Now don't get me wrong, I loves strawberries. But the plants root like there is no tomorrow. Not long roots either, just tenacious. I spent Saturday clearing the old strawberry patch at the farm this weekend and my arms, stomach and legs are very aware of it.

It was a lovely day to be in the garden on Saturday. The sun was shining, the wind was gentle, the rain held off. Birds of prey were circling above, an owl kept fluttering by, the robins were following us eating worms. I got to hold a 3 day old piglet.

Oh yes, we're in piglet season again. I love piglets, they are just the cutest things. Next will be lambs and chicks and ducklings. Oh how I love spring.

Having taken all my weekly office anger out on the strawberries I was able to make pizza with out getting stressed. Pepper and bacon on a wholewheat crust. Yummy. Then we sat down to play on the Wii we have been loaned by a friend. Not a bad Saturday really.

Sunday was all about the dull ironing. Not my fav chore it has to be said. But it's all done now. I'm up to date with the washing, there is bread in the bread bin. the kitchen floor is reasonably clean. The hoovering needs doing and I really need to tidy my dressing table. But other than that the household things are up to date.

On the knitting front I am halfway through the fibre for my nebula challenge, halfway through one sock for my valentines challenge, ready to knit the front and back on Spadger's cardigan and have at least 2 other projects in mind already. I'm a block behind on the EcoQuilt challenge but I know what I'm doing for blocks 2 and 3 so I just need to get on with them. On the sewing front I have done nothing on my friend's coat (I'm a bad person I know), my Momma has commissioned me to sew a regency dress and jacket in 9 weeks and that is about it. My poor sewing machines are being ignored in favour of wool at the mo.

Tuesday, 8 February 2011

My dad always said that there's 24 usable hours in every day

However I'm not wired on drugs and have to sleep for up to 8 of those. I also have to go to work for 8 of them and am usually in the building for 8 and a quarter. The travel to and from work takes about 1 hour in total and the getting ready for work takes about 45 mins. That leaves me with 6 hours and mins to do stuff. Now lets say that there is at least 1 hour of that taken up by making and eating the evening meal. That puts me down to 5. 5 hours to do everything that needs to be done to look after a home and all the things I would like to do. 5 hours to fit in baking, knitting, spinning, sewing, photography, jewellery. 5 measly hours. Either someone needs to add some extra hours into the day or I need to find a way to work less.

Monday, 7 February 2011

Prime Scoobies - Complete

Yay I completed my first challenge. I am now on the Ninja board with 1 point. Woop Woop! I my excitement I forgot to tell them which challenge I was entering it for. Fortunately for me the Gamesmaster is very forgiving :o)

Thursday, 3 February 2011

Valentines Socks update

I started the socks last night. My first cables. As with any new project I had to start it over at least once. I should have really frogged and started over twice but I decided the mistakes were minimal and no one would notice but me. Purling round a corner seems to be an issue for me. Heck I still struggle a little with the Purl stitch at the best of times.

So second attempt in and I decided that the "proper" cable needle was not working for me. I don't really hold my needles very flat which meant it kept slipping out of my stitches. So I substituted a 5mm wooden dpn. Large and grabby, the stitches were going nowhere.

I've completed the 9 rounds that make up the ribbing. Next I start on the patterning for the heart cables that run down the leg. I think I'll be adapting the pattern by making it shorter in the leg as I only really want ankle socks. But this should be pretty easy as it is just a pattern repeat. As long as I stop on the same row of the pattern chart as the instructions call for I should be fine. I'm actually feeling fairly confident about this. However it may mean that this is the only NW project I manage. I'd like to do some others (posts coming up on those) but I'm not sure if I'll have the time. I guess I should start them though as the whole point of NW was to make me push myself.

I was mighty pleased to hear from you other Spike aficionados. Glad it's not just me. (Bless Spadger for putting up with my teenage lustings :oD) Just for you guys here is a little pic of happiness

Tuesday, 1 February 2011


Challenge (Scientific): NEBULAS
Your challenge is to demonstrate a nebula in a project. For example, you could spin yarn reminiscent of a nebula or create a project that depicts a famous nebula.

Now this seems like a perfect excuse to spin the pretty fibre I got for my birthday.

Gorgeous isn't it?

It reminds me of my favourite nebula, the Orion Nebula. Mostly the bottom left corner. So if I spin this up well I will have Orion Nebula yarn. I think this will fit in with the challenge. This should also be easily doable in the time scale.

Valentines socks

Tonight is sock club. I'm teaching a couple of my friends to knit socks. Now lets ignore the fact that I have never actually knitted a pair of socks. I do know the theory and basic socks are no harder than anything else. I plan on offering people basis socks or a pattern out of my stash. I'm going ot be doing something al ittle more interesting than basic sock as I plan on combining them with my first Nerd Wars project.

Challenge (Team Spirit): VALENTINE'S DAY
I must knit something for my favourite BtVS character. Clearly this is Spike. I think a nice pair of socks would be much appreciated. The pattern I wanted to use is a toe up sock so that is no good. I want to work cuff down like everyone else so I can show them the basics. I think I'm going to make the Vampire Boyfriend socks. They will definitely be stretching my skills (cables eep!) and as I'm not in a team at the mo if I don't get them done it's no biggie. The vampire connection and the hearts make them a perfect pattern for the challenge. Plus they are socks I will wear. What? We all know Spike isn't really going to come round for them as much as I wish so I'd best make something I'll wear.