31 August 2013

Fin: Miette

Huzzah I finished my Miette!

Huzzah it fits!

Huzzah I think it actually looks ok!

Huzzah no more purling for a little while!

I can't explain this face
Or this one
this is what it looks like when I am picking cat hair out of my knitting while posing.

I made this as part of a Handmaker's Factory KAL, but found the most help with this pattern here, really great bunch of pages put together for a previous Miette KAL (organised by yellowbird - here is her Miette).

Pattern: Miette by Andi Satterlund
A quite well written pattern, probably let down a bit by my sub-standard knitting skills (I mean, look how uneven my stockinette is.  ugh purling).  Also probs my yarn choice, being a lighter weight than called for in the pattern, the lace on the collar/sleeves is not as pronounced.  Even so, I managed to get an actual wearable garment out of it!  Not bad eh?  Further details on mods etc on my Rav project page.

Yarn:  Bendigo Woollen Mills Classic 8ply in Lime.  Do not make something that touches your skin with this yarn.  I have skin like an elephant but this is ITCHY.  Softened up a bit on washing, but may do a conditioner soak to try to coax it to be softer still.

Ravelled here and uploaded to Handmaker's Factory here.


p.s. I might torture you by blogging this again if I can ever photograph the damn thing true to colour.  I'm thinking a photoshoot at La Belle Miette?  It's not about the macarons, I swear... it's about the knitting...

-Linking with-
Tami's Amis FO Fridays | Fiber Arts Fridays at Wisdom Begins in Wonder | Natural Suburbia for Creative Fridays | I've Made Friday at SusanD1408 Crochet Addict | I ♥ Fridays at Petals to Picots

27 August 2013

I can do it!

One sleeve down, one to go.  Saturday deadline.  I can do it!

Channelling Rosie the Riveter, because as we all know, knitting is just like war.


P.S.  I'm co-organising a KAL which starts on Sunday!  Click here to join the KAL/CAL for these great fox hats!

Linking to- WIP Wednesday (Tami's Amis) | WIP Wednesday (Ambassador Crochet) | Yarn Along (Small Things) | Keep Calm and Craft On {Crafting on} (Frontier Dreams) | What you doing Wednesday (SusanD1408 Crochet Addict) | Hookin on Hump Day (My Merry Messy Life)

25 August 2013


Hey there!! I am very excited to announce that my very good bloggy friend Lisa and I will be hosting our very first KAL together!!!!!

I was intially inspired by Lisa's uber cute selfie of herself modelling a cute beanie at her local Target. I too rushed down to my Target to do the same.

After looking at the construction of these hats, and also not seeing anything else similar on Ravelry, Lisa and I decided to put together patterns of our own and invite you to knit or crochet your own version with us this September.

Lisa has created a crochet version, and I have worked up a knitted version. Both are suited to beginner knitters or crocheters, both are made flat and seamed together. We recommend adding the foxy features post-completion. The knitted version (on Ravelry here) comes with both written and charted instructions. What's more, we're feeling pretty relaxed about the whole KAL thing, so we're happy for you to choose one of our patterns and make the same exact hat, make your own alterations/embellishments or even knit or crochet along with a different fox pattern altogether (so long as it is flat and seamed)! We don't mind! Creativity is encouraged!

Our patterns will be released for free generally after the KAL, but will be made exclusively available to KAL participants from 1 September.

Interested in making your very own foxy hat? Please sign up for the KAL at our special Ravelry group.

The KAL is scheduled to start on 1 September 2013 (a Sunday) and finish on 6 October 2013 (also a Sunday).  Lisa and I are both in Australia (albeit on different sides) so we'll be working in Aussie time.

All participants signing up get these great printable gift tags made by Lisa (they will be sent to you with the pattern on 1 September)!

One participant who finishes and posts a picture of their FO by 6 October will receive the pictured fantastic prize of yarn and foxy goodness!!

We also have some minor prizes we are planning on giving away. These may include things like yarn and badges, and will be given out on highly objective bases, such as 'creativity' and 'participation'. You have been warned!

So what are you waiting for? Head on over to the FOXY KAL Ravelry group and sign up!


P.S. Here's some lovely html for you if you would like to put a link to the FOXY KAL on your blog!

20 August 2013

So much stockinette

At least I'm getting some purling practice right? Uggh purling

Prospects looking grim for finishing this KAL on time. I'd like to give it a good old try though. I have the sleeves, button band and neck band to make in 11 days. Not too much to ask. Surely.


Linking to- WIP Wednesday (Tami's Amis) | WIP Wednesday (Ambassador Crochet) | Yarn Along (Small Things) | Keep Calm and Craft On {Crafting on} (Frontier Dreams) | What you doing Wednesday (SusanD1408 Crochet Addict) | Hookin on Hump Day (My Merry Messy Life)

14 August 2013


I've been thinking about patience and knitting, and I truly believe that knitting has made me so more patient.

When I started knitting, I never thought I'd be the type of person with the patience to quietly un-knit hundreds of stitches to remedy an error made rows earlier.  And yet, with this piece, that's what I've done.  It's the most challenging pattern I've attempted to date, I think it's looking beautiful, and I've found myself at peace fixing mistakes, of which there have been many.  It's very zen.

Since I last shared this, I re-started it on smaller needles, and it looks so much better than that hot mess.  I have knit two and a half repeats of the seven required repeats of the basket weave.  I always think that knitting is such a slow process, but I know if I just work on this a bit more consistently I will see results.  Watch this space.


Linking to- WIP Wednesday (Tami's Amis) | WIP Wednesday (Ambassador Crochet) | Yarn Along (Small Things) | Keep Calm and Craft On {Crafting on} (Frontier Dreams) | What you doing Wednesday (SusanD1408 Crochet Addict) | Hookin on Hump Day (My Merry Messy Life)

13 August 2013

365: 141-160

141. Oh my Gok at Target, everywhere. His face freaks me out whenever I walk in there.
142. Workin' on my Miette.
143. My windosill Cyclamen, still going strong.
144. Steve Buschemi, graffiti style (Hosier Lane)
145. More knitting
146. The Kitten!
147. A punny sign.
148. Can't go past a Bunnings sausage.
149. Belateed birthday pressie. Oz ftw!
150. A pic of me, by my sis, circa mid-90s.
151. Arty (lol) picture of my new blinding alarm clock. Money well spent, I am not using it.
152. The Kitten and knitting!
153. Blinded by the light...
154. The discovery of #noveltybroochfriday on instagram has inspired me to actually wear the multitude of brooches I own!
155. Fed Square.
156. Anti-gambling: "In the end, the machines will win". Sounds like Skynet to me.
157. A new tureen! Cauliflower the second!
158. Trying some sewing.
159. Metro map.
160. I love looking up at buildings. This is the Assmebly Hall at 156-160 Collins Street.


06 August 2013

Seeing Green

I'm considering making book reviews (or my version of them anyway) a part of my usual blogging schedule, if for no other reason than to remind myself of what I've read (my memory can be pretty garbage with things like that).

I don't read much.  Actually, depending on your definition of 'read' you may think that I do not read at all, considering my most usual fiction delivery system is the audiobook.  Audiobooks have advantages and disadvantages.  Advantages include freeing up my hands enabling me to knit on the train and an increase in entertainment value if they are read well (for example, if there are Irish characters and the performer does a decent Irish accent).  Disadvantages include that it takes a lot longer to finish a book in audio format, and if they are not read well your impression of the book can be influenced.

I've already mentioned my most recent obsession of the vlogbrothers.  This has extended to an interest in nerdfighteria generally and John Green's books specifically.  The first of his books I read was The Fault in Our Stars, which itself had it's faults (haha), but overall was the most affecting book I've read in a long time, or possibly ever.  I spoke about it on my blog before even finishing the entire book, illustrating how strongly I felt about it.

Recently, I've been churning through Green's back catalogue, hoping that his earlier work would give me all the feelings, or just give me a good story, like Tfios did.  On the whole, I have to say I'm disappointed.  His earlier books are OK, but certainly not fabulous.  Here are some of my thoughts, in the order in which I listened to them.

I've linked the titles of each book to their respective page from John Green's website.

Just OK.  It wasn't terrible, but it certainly wasn't a book I would rush out and recommend to anyone. Not sure what else to say about it, you can read the blurb yourself. I think my favourite thing about any book is the diaglogue, so when a book is weak, or unrealistic, on diaglogue the whole thing is spoiled for me. People just don't talk like that. Also, I didn't find the main premise of the book, or the protagonist's (I can't even remember his name) goal believable or interesting. That might just be me though.

My obsession with the vlogbrothers has involved watching every single one of their videos in order.  It's actually a bit weird, experiencing events that happened over years in a few short weeks of youtubing.  I watched countless videos leading up to and about the release of Paper Towns, and seen a lot of the responses to papertowns as described by John and Hank in their videos, all seemingly very very positive.

I was a bit shocked to discover, upon reading it, that the book is just nothing.  That may sound very harsh, but I didn't see the point to it.  Not much happens, and the things that do happen take so so long to happen.  I did not like Margo at all, what a brat.  I found the rest of the characters boring/unconvincing and again, the dialogue bothered me. People don't talk that way.

A lot less fuss was made about this book in vlogbrothers videos compared to Paper Towns, so my expectations were not so inflated.  So I was actually pleasantly surprised, this was a really good book. It's about two teenages who share a name, who randomly come across one another and loosely are involved in each other's lives. The ending was the only part I didn't like, way too convoluted. I think I liked David Levitan's Will Grayson more than Greens', the character just was more interesting and grew a lot more through the book. I would definitely recommend this one, despite the ending.

I screwed myself with this book, unwittingly (well, I should have known better, I was browsing this tumblr [Don't click on it if you haven't read the book seriously the first line spoils the whole thing]) spoiled the whole plot. Even so, this book was really good, I didn't see it coming, and the aftermath was written very empathetically and realistically. And this was his first book! I liked the characters a lot more, and the dialogue was believable. I also spoiled the ending for myself by watching this video of a young John Green (told you I was obsessed) talking about some of his school hijinks (this time I swear it was unwittingly). In short, would recommend.

Here, I drew a graph of what I thought of each of John Green's books, in the order he wrote them.

I'm not sure why I'm so underwhelmed by Green's books.  They're not terrible, but they're certainly, on the whole, nothing to write home about.  I've been thinking about why I feel this way, and I think a big part of it is that I am not a teenager (the intended audience) and therefore cannot relate to the characters.  Even when I was a teenager, romantic relationships were never on my list of priorities, and I think that books about them are a bit cringeworthy. 


05 August 2013

Tanya does movies: July

Time to recap you on the movies I watched last month, Lolcat style.

Super (2010)
Partner had been on my back for ages to watch this, and why the frick didn't I?  It was a lot better than I thought, with Rainn Wilson as the actually quite scary 'super' hero, and Ellen Page doing her usual awesome self.  Another take on the 'real' super hero genre, I really enjoyed it.

Despicable Me (2010)
Catching up with animated movies I hadn't seen.  I thought this would be a lot better.  Although one of the characters did the nerdfighter sign, which was unexpected.

Morning Glory (2010)
I didn't expect to enjoy this movie as much as I did. I think that's the key to enjoying movies - keep your expectations low. Harrison Ford was the key takeaway from this movie - he was so hilariously grouchy I would recommend this movie just for that.

Admission (2013)
Hello Tina Fey, this is what you've been up to! Quite a good movie, hopefully it's not really like that is it? I personally don't get the concept of entrance essays, we don't have that here. Seems to legitimise discrimination? Anyway, enough of my half-baked outrage at systems I do not understand. Paul Rudd was also good.

World War Z (2013)
Hey I read the book before seeing a moovie *gold star*. I was actually disappointed. I kept waiting for stuff to happen, and nothing much ever did. Yeah there were billions of zombies, but I never really felt the threat? That sounds lame, I think the lack of gore really got to me. A very tame zombie movie. Nice idea, but nothing new.

Casper (1995)
Welcome to my childhood, where we had about 5 video tapes that were played over and over. Casper was one of them, and I hadn't watched it in so long I felt it was time to revisit it. As a child a lot of the cameos were lost on me, so it was fun to watch just to see Dan Aykroyd (kinda) reprising his role from Ghostbusters, along with brief glimpses of Mel Gibson, Clint Eastwood and Rodney Dangerfield. I still love this movie *sigh nostalgia*.

Arthur (1981)
When you get caught between the moon and New York City... the best that you can do... is fall in love.... Arthur's theme is a song that's regularly played on our mix CD's, and yet I had never seen the film. Happy to say I thoroughly enjoyed it, especially Dudley Moore's performance as the loveable drunk.

Arthur 2: On the Rocks (1988)
Wow, just wow. They just tried too hard and overshot the mark with this one. It was quite bad? Dudley Moore was still the stand out, but there were so many problems, it was just, bleh. My main problem was why that biatch wanted to marry him so much? Totes no motivation.

Arthur (2011)
OMG REMAKE! Despite the fact that I vomit into my mouth a little bit every time I see Rusell Brand, this movie was actually quite good. It remedied a lot of the problems of the original, mainly giving Susan movitvation as to why she is so desperate to marry Arthur. It was a bit overdone (as you would expect from Brand) but overall quite good. Brand is no match for Dudley Moore though.

The Flintstones (1994)
Yabba dabba doooo! I quite liked this movie. I like that the dinosaurs are puppets, and there's quite a bit of that breaking the fourth wall thing that Hanna Barbera loved doing so much. John Goodman is a great Fred, and I have a secret crush on Rick Moranis.

Adventures in Babysitting (1987)
Yet another cool cool movie that I'd never seen before. As the title suggests, it's about a babysitter who goes on adventures. Unintended adventures, sure, but those are the best kind. Just classic 80s fun and frivolity. Would recommend.

Romancing the Stone (1984)
Another awesomesauce 80s movie I'd neither heard about or seen. Fan-frickin-tastic. An indiana Jones-esque adventure movie with all that goes with it. Michael Douglas was super fantastic.

The Last Boy Scout (1991)
Bruce Willis playing... a cop. Have you seen this? Accurate. Anyway, really awesome movie. I especially loved Willis' 'de-affirmations' ie "you're a horrible person, everyone hates you". Aww.

They Live (1988)
Another movie that I shamefully had not seen before! Hey, freaky! Quite a good movie, interesting and not something that I have seen before. How good was the makeup? Especially for a move that is over 20 years old, it holds up very well.

9 (2009)
This one looked really good, and I was excited to watch it, but it just didn't do it for me. It might have been because the mysteriousness was not quite believeable. I dunno. Just soemthing off about it, but it was kinda cute to look at at least.

Bachelorette (2012)
Rebel Wilson was grossly under utilised in this film, but I really liked Isla Fisher and Kirsten Dunst. Isla Fisher does that ditzy girl so well, it's almost a crime. I was able to set aside my general anti-wedding movie feelings and quite enjoyed this movie for what it was - a stupid unrealistic set of circumstances that must be remedied before the big day.

Evil Dead (2013)
Heyyyy we got this on Blu Ray and it's super duper epic! The special features were especially good, any chance I get to see Bruce Campbell talking about what he's been doing and what he thinks is a huge plus. He also spoke about how he didn't want anyone trying to emulate his awful acting from the orignal movie. Aw.

Four Lions (2010)
This movie was quite funny, even if a little unsettling knowing that it was made prior to the Boston bombings, yet depicts similar (albeit in a comedically convoluted way) events. Seriously, spooky. But a good movie if you don't take it too seriously (which you shouldn't). Here is a much more eloquent review of this movie which I would recommend.

The Wolverine (2013)
What's not to like? Everyone likes Wolverine right? I expected it to be good and was not disappointed. It wasn't spectacular, mind, but enjoyable so long as you like comic book movies, which I'm sure you do. So yeah, claws out and mutany good times all round. *SNIKT!*

The Muppets' Wizard of Oz (2013)
I love me some Muppets, and I'm in the process of collecting all of the Muppets' works. The Oz take is not their finest work, but it has all the muppety elements like the silly jokes, plus a lot of things from the books that you don't actually see used very often (the green spectacles, the magic cap of the flying monkeys). I really liked it.

Justice League:  The Flashpoint Paradox (2013)
DC may not have their act together on the theatrical front, but they sure can put an animated movie together.  I don't read a lot of the comics, but I do enjoy injesting comics in their animated form.  It's the best form really, because anything can happen in animation, where movies are restricted, even with CGI.  Anyway, Flashpoint is apparently some famous storyline, and it was fully sick mate.  It was really cool to see the good buys go crazy, and the different take on Batman was awesome.  Highly recommend.

Aaaaannnnddd the pick of July was.... Adventures in Babysitting, followed closely by The Last Boy Scout .

What did you watch last month? Do you have any recommendations for me?