Tag Archives: knitting

this, that and the other

The stepping stones have had their first layer of grout, and now that it’s dry they get one more layer and then a slick of sealer. (I know I was aiming for Finished Object Friday – but I didn’t say which Friday, did I?)


Alex’s knitting continues. She’s finished the rib and is on the stocking stitch rows, and this evening we’ll change colour. Excitement!


I’ve been making some beanies for Cupcake Mummy’s Pay it Forward idea. I pledged 5 but I’ve already nearly finished the fifth one and I’m enjoying them so much I should probably be able to get a couple more finished in time.


Just as well they can be all different sizes – all of these were done with the same size hook but I used different thicknesses of wool. The turquoise one would fit Conan the Barbarian!

I’ve also been busy with my cotton house slippers. I’ve come up with the incredibly brilliant idea (at least I think so) of sewing on a non-slip undersole.  It’s easy to slip on tiles or wood, which so many people have in their homes, and I would be horrified if my slippers were the cause of anyone’s accident.


At our last Kirstenbosch Market on 31 March, the slippers were a really hot item so I’m going to be making loads more and am also thinking it might be a good idea to list them on etsy as well.

Even better, Jam Tarts has just been made a permanent vendor at this particular craft market, which is completely wonderful and fabulous for us.  It has been running for over 20 years, and really offers an incredible and comprehensive range of art and craft, all handmade South African stuff – no imports, nothing mass-produced! The market is on the last Sunday of every month, excluding June, July and August, so the next one is on 28 April. Try not to miss it.  Unless you live in Wichita or Perth, obviously…

Back soon x


shawl/scarf share and Alex knits

This is a fabulous pattern for a shawl – it’s the Sausalito Shell by Gail Tanquary. It was free via Crystal Palace Yarns, and here’s a link to the pattern if you want to download it: Sausalito Shawl.

A while ago I made it with acrylic yarn and a 4.5mm hook, and it turned out really well:


On the weekend I decided to make it again, but differently. I used 2 strands of Vinni’s dk cotton and a 5.5mm hook, and chained 199 instead of 274, to compensate for the extra thickness.

After 4 rows I realised I wasn’t going to have enough cotton in Slate to make the full shawl, but NO WAY was I going to scrap any labour! I added half a row of shells in the centre to give it a bit of a curve, and then 2 rows of double crochet along one side in a contrasting colour.


It’s made a lovely chunky scarf which I have already worn twice. No-one has commented yet on how awesome it looks round my neck…but for the moment it’s enough for me to love it and admire it every time I walk past the mirror.

And then, in an extraordinary burst of enthusiasm from my previously totally disinterested daughter, Alex asked me to teach her to knit last night. I cracked my head quite badly on the side table as I fell off the couch in surprise. This is, after all, the girl who thinks handknitted things are not cool.


Anyway, I now have the pic to prove it. She is making a hat and has cast on and completed two rows of k2 p2 rib without a single mistake. She did say she found it hard to get it right and needed to take a little rest after the first row, and I like to think she has a new found regard for the cleverness of us knitters and crocheters. Hear me roar!

Back soon x

Bolero – check.

I’ve been blaming my current lack of energy on the heat and humidity of a Cape Town summer. And whether that is the case or not, that’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

I have finished knitting the bolero for John’s niece:



I like the way the two blues worked together, and it’s also nice to knit with larger needles for a change (I used 7mm). Goes more quickly, too.

I have other things on my list for the day, but now that I can tick off the bolero, I’m allowing myself to be diverted by Janette’s coasters (here). Just have to make one.

To be continued…

knit one purl one

Got my knitting needles out this weekend, for the first time in ages. I made this bolero last year and it was almost the very first thing that got sold when Jam Tarts had its first Open Day.



It was an ex-colleague who bought it for his 10-yr old niece, and he reported that she loved it so much that she practically slept in it. He has been asked to give her another one this year, in blues, so that’s what I’m busy with. I couldn’t find a variegated yarn with the right combination of blues that I wanted, so I’m mixing two strands together. It’s turning out a lovely rich denim colour, which I think any normal pre-teen will approve of.

It’s a great pattern, actually, designed by Dawn Leeseman, and it was a free download from I-can’t-remember-which-site, but I could probably track it if anyone else is interested. For once, I’m going to tackle this task as professionally as possible and actually Make Notes about how much yarn I use, any improvisations I make to the original pattern, and how long it takes to knit. Yeah right.

In other news, Alex made us a lovely lunch on Saturday. Sometimes, when she does something that clearly I regard as hilarious/stupid/original, she glares menacingly at me and says, ‘You’d better not put this in your blog.’ And other times, she’ll say sweetly, ‘Don’t you want to blog about this, cher maman?’. And so we have the Goldberg summer special: a variety of baby letttuce leaves, fresh orange segments, a sprinkling of quinoa and rice, slivers of smoked salmon, coriander, and a perfect dressing.

alex salad

Rob was going to join us for lunch but he couldn’t because he had to wait for his new bed to be delivered, but Nathan was here. Nathan has completed a year at the prestigious Silwood School of cooking, so when he says something is good, then you’d better believe it.

To be continued…

Spring is here!

Just a couple of oddments from me today, nothing like my usual creative focus or intellectual challenge. hahahaha

First off, spring has reached Cape Town! It’s time to unearth my cotton blouses and sleeveless waistcoats:

Second, here is a mirror I made for a certain important person in my life. His reception area is very dull and bleak, and I thought this would cheer things up.

(and you try and take a photo of a mirror without getting your reflection in it!)

Third, thanks to G-Ma Ellen, I discovered this divine crochet pattern for slippers from Mamachee on Etsy:

Fell in love with, ordered, paid, and downloaded! How spectacular is this super-speed techno world of ours! Turns out I have no 6.5mm hook in my tools, so I’m off to Simply Stitches in Pinelands just now. As soon as I finish this post. Oh, and shower and dress.

Finally, get yourselves on over to the Woolhogs Made-It Challenge – the prize for October has been donated by the lovely Rainbow Junkie in the UK. You don’t have to make anything knitted or crocheted, it can be baked, stitched, modelled, painted….the world is your banana. And no, I have no idea what made me write that. Sometimes I’m just silly.

To be continued…