Sunday, June 26, 2016

green love.

oooh boy is it getting chilly! with all this cool weather, the progress in the garden has been slow... but there's definitely been a bit of growth in our ever expanding patch since last time i shared (which i've just realised was over a month ago, where exactly is this time going??)

this lettuce variety (whatever it may be... it came from a mixed packet of seeds i bought in tasmania, last time i was there in 2010, strong little things!) is growing from strength to strength.

this unknown lettuce is growing like crazy, it is super green and has rocket-y type leaves

nothing else seems to have taken hold, so i hope this stuff is delicious and nutritious ha ha!

these little onion seedlings have finally popped their head ups. i'd started to get worried the seeds had been eaten by the birds.

shown with garlic sprouts in the background

they're looking a little dwarfed in comparison to the garlic growing right next door...

getting much bigger

after mulching them in, these garlic sprouts have become very happy little fellows. going from strength to strength!

despite the cold and frosty weather, there are MORE new leaves on my grape vine.

new growth on the grape vine, ready to unfurl new leaves

it is obviously super happy in it's new home!

the broadies are doing their slow but steady climb towards the sky.

slow growing broad beans at this time of the year

i'm trying to decide whether or not to stake them... there's some wicked wind that rips through this little patch on occasions, but having stakes in the ground might just give the wind something else to blow over... more thinking required!

and finally, these wee rainbow chard sprouts are slowly growing up.

yellow-stalked chard, slowly growing up

i can't wait to get some of this green goodness into our meals!

what's growing at your place at the moment?

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

accidental vegan ice cream.

after dreaming of having one for years and years, there's a brand new kitchenaid sitting on my kitchen bench. and in my mind, one of the must-have attachments was the ice cream bowl...
both were put to good use the other night, when i made accidental vegan ice cream...
accidental vegan ice cream happens when you're home from work, and realise there are no milk or eggs in the house, but ice cream must happen! a quick rummage through the pantry, and voila, ice cream happened!

close up of shaved coconut

you'll need:
2 tablespoons Foster Clarke's custard powder (it's vegan, if that's not so important, any custard powder will do the trick)
1 tablespoon sugar (i used raw caster sugar, it's what's in the pantry)
1 cup almond milk
400ml coconut milk
3 tablespoons shaved coconut

to make:
blend the sugar and custard powder in a microwave safe bowl with a little of the almond milk to make a paste.
slowly add in the rest of the almond milk, and ONE cup of the coconut milk while continuing to stir.
cook in the microwave on high for 4 minutes (if you don't have a microwave you could do this on the stove, not sure for how long though)
give the custard a good stir (mine was quite thick by this stage) and pop it into the fridge to cool.
after about 30 minutes, whisk in the remaining coconut milk and pop back in the fridge to cool further (the timing on this probably isn't too important).
when the custard is nice and cold, grab out the ice cream bucket from your freezer and set it up with the kitchen aid.
stir through the shaved coconut.
with the mixer on low speed, pour the custard mix into the freezer bowl. allow to churn for 20-30 minutes before transferring ice cream into a container and popping it into the freezer to set further. or you could just eat it straight away. up to you ha ha!

don't have an ice cream maker? i was reading last night that you can make ice cream by using two ziplock bags, a bigger one full of ice, and a small one with your mix inside. by popping the smaller inside the bigger, icy one, and smooshing it around a bit, you can make ice cream too!

have you made ice cream before? what's your favourite flavour?

Monday, June 13, 2016

eighth to thirteenth.

or an alternate title could be, a series of knitted headwear...

in between the big finishes that i've been blogging about this year (titled first through to seventh), there have been plenty of little knits. instant gratification projects, a few of which have already showed up in my #memademay posts...

i thought i'd spend a wee bit more time today, and flesh out some of their details a little more.

the eighth, ninth and tenth projects were all knit from the same yarn.

green big wool beaniegreen ribbed big wool beaniegreen chevron big wool beanie

i had originally bought the yarn to knit my pouffe, but as it was a MASSIVE fail, i pulled it all out and made an arm knitted blanket, but still had a big ball leftover!
these three big beanies definitely burned through a bit of that big ball, and i was hoping to send them and maybe one or two more, to the alice springs beanie festival, but i completely missed the deadline!
too much going on in my brain!!

i think instead, i'll send them off to syrian refugees. a wee bit of handknitted love to keep a head and heart warm.

these next two finishes have also already been featured in #memademay and have barely been off my head since they left the needles.

blue queensland beach headband knit in cascade 220orange queensland beach headband knit in cascade 220

they're the perfect pieces for keeping my ears toasty in this freezing cold winter's wind. funny as the pattern is titled 'queensland beach' ha ha!

i knitted both of these at the same time, and ran out of yarn for both of them! i made up for it by knitting some plain ribbing for the underside in black, and it blends in quite nicely with my hair and kinda looks like it's meant to be that way!
'design feature' for the win ha ha!

and this final hat?

freestyle navy and silver beanie knit in wool days scout yarn. skinny fair isle heart band on crown

it's a classic nicole beanie, completely free-styled... but it's knit up in the new wool days yarn which is absolutely LUSH! it's basically ruined me for all other yarns as it's so buttery soft and gorgeous to knit with.

hopefully the recipient likes it, as it's a belated birthday present! fingers are crossed!

Friday, June 10, 2016

meet the mendees.

as i mentioned earlier, the list of things to be mended around these parts is getting a wee bit out of control.
to keep me accountable, i thought i'd share here, and set myself a little goal of the end of the month to get them ALL dealt with and back into bb and my wardrobes.

big toe poking through a hole in my tights

first priority for me is this pair of tights. there's nothing more uncomfortable than a toe poking out of your tights into your shoe! oh and this pair might not be alone either...
the two pairs of beautifully warm fleecy tights i own, both have toe holes! the shame! it can't go on any longer!!

i also noticed that one pair has a tiny knick just above the knee which i'll definitely need to get on to straight away, to avoid a run and a bigger mess to fix down the line.

i've also got a couple of cardigans which need some love. one has a hole in the seaming under the arm, which should be super simple and quick fix. the other will be a little trickier though as it has a series of little knicks in it, courtesy of my fabric shaver. someone wasn't holding the fabric quite taut enough... and didn't seem to learn the lesson after the first time, or the second, or the third... did i mention it's a series of holes ha ha?!
anywho, as it's in quite a state, i've got a bit more creative mending solution in mind, it'll take quite a bit more time, but will freshen up an old cardi (which i'm pretty sure i bought for $10...) and give it some new life!

bb had mentioned to me a couple of times that there were holes in his jean pockets...

pockets of bb's jeans looking threadbare and holey

and upon inspection, it was super apparent why he was losing coins down the leg of said jeans!
these pockets are basically destroyed and will need to be completely replaced! not quite the quick needle and thread job that i thought they'd be originally, but will be worth the effort considering otherwise, the jeans are still in good condition!

i also have a pair of socks that have some nice big holes to be darned in the heels, and a pair of much loved pyjama pants that are in desperate need of new elastic.

wish me luck y'all, i've got quite the list to work on!

Thursday, June 9, 2016


this teeny little dress, has been one of the longest standing projects on my needles in quite a while!

started back in october of last year, it was definitely on the list of works-in-progress to get finished this year.
this list, that i've been banging on about since the start of the year, had five items, and this is number five! yahoo!
the other projects were these special socks, my alcomar shirt, bb's jumper and a very long standing cross-stitch project.

anywho, back to the dress!

close up of sleeve and shoulder of knitted 'clara' dress, knitted in isager alpaca merino in a silver colour

i'd been lusting after this pattern for a good while as it's quite a hard one to come by. it's only available as a physical print out, not by pdf or online or anything, and is generally only available to purchase in a kit...
complete impulse purchase on my behalf, but one that i don't think i'll come to regret in the future, as i now have a copy of this beautiful pattern and can make it again and again and again!

front view of knitted 'clara' dress, knitted in isager alpaca merino in a silver colour

i knitted this up in a 12 month size, thinking i could gift it to a former coworker with a wee baby girl, but being that she turned one in november, i have strong doubts it will fit her any longer!

it was such a gorgeous pattern to knit up, especially the beautiful lacework in the yoke. i did find the skirt a little tedious though and i think it was a main reason it took me so long to finish up! lots of teeny stitches in that there pretty skirt!

close up of button closure of knitted 'clara' dress, knitted in isager alpaca merino in a silver colour

the dress finished up beautifully after a wee block and a button from my stash.
now to get it to my friend sometime before her daughter's second birthday...

having serious thoughts about sizing it up (it only comes in two sizes...) by changing up the ply of the wool too. we'll see if i ever find the time ha ha!!

Wednesday, June 8, 2016


oops, it's inadvertently been a week since my last post... definitely didn't mean for that to happen, but it did, so let's get caught up!

after bringing home the newest issue of pompom magazine, i realised, i really hadn't given the past two issues a thorough looking over yet...

catching up on some issues of pompom magazine over a breakfast of cereal, fruit and tea

remedied over breakfast (well begun, let's be honest... the picture, the articles, so much to look at!)
you'd better believe i had my phone sitting next to me and that my ravelry project queue is looking a little healthier! and i even found a project or two to use up a little stash yarn to boot!

winter is definitely here!

frost and fog in the morning, caught by the morning sun

frosty, foggy mornings have been in great supply round these parts, and the fire, as well as my collection of winter woollens have been getting a work out!

you might say the nesting instincts are kicking in...

sorting and labelling the magnetic grundtal spice jars

when i got home from melbourne last week, i just HAD to label and alphabetise the spice jars. priority one when it's 6:30pm on a sunday and there's no dinner planned to speak of...
jeez i'm happy they're done though!

a wee catch up lunch with family last week, saw me giving this lemon tart recipe a go.

homemade lemon tart on the table

cathie's recipes are always my faves (i basically know this banana bread one by heart i've made it so many times!), and having tasted these amazing tarts before, i knew it would be a winner!
and oh boy, it was! so simple and easy, particularly for a recipe where you're making pastry and a curd, and so flipping delicious!

last sunday, i met up with some folks and hit up the hand-knitters guild, annual yarn market.

a ball of pure white alpaca/merino/bamboo blended yarn, a skein of dk weight yarn in olive greens and a skein of sock yarn in moody greys and blues

despite telling myself i do not need any more yarn, i walked away with these three beauties. a skein each of merri creek sock and darling road dk from miss click clack and a big ol' ball of a beautiful alpaca/merino/bamboo blend from the alpaca yarn lady.

as well as purchasing yarn i didn't need, i got to hang with a gorgeous group of ladies and have lots of fiber friend catch ups. a great day out!

in my last stint in melbourne, i was so grateful to come home with this gorgeous thing...

a beautiful, likely handmade, spinning wheel in a dark coloured timber

a beautiful, suspected handmade, spinning wheel!
gifted to me as it's former owner hadn't used it in a decade or two and wanted to see it go to someone who would love and appreciate it. definitely already ticking those two boxes, even if i haven't quite gotten it back into working order yet... stay tuned folks!

what a thing to come home to after a busy few days away at work!

a delightful collection of biscuits with a handwritten note

a little package full of biscuits from the badass biscuit co. i was lucky enough to win these delicious morsels in an instagram competition and boy were they scrumptious!

so that's been pretty much me the last week and a bit, what have you been up to?

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

#memademay week four and a half.

phew, and just like that, may, and me made may is OVER!
may was quite possibly the quickest month ever no?

taking part in me made may for the first time this year, was super eye opening... to just how much of my wardrobe is actually me-made, but also to some gaps i think i'd like to fill.
it's also made me realise, i have some more mending to be done too! i might try and get to work on a name and shame post this week, like i did last time i had heaps of mending to do!

i also feel like i want to make some more room in my life for some more sewing! i have quite the wee fabric stash happening, and although i did manage to cut into some of it this month, i'd love to work through some more. i definitely have some garments, and other things in mind!
relinquishing the potential knitting time will be hard though ha ha!

any who, on with the last little installment of my me made may!

kicking back by the fire with some cosy vanilla two at a time socks on

day twenty-two saw me kicking back by the fire with my feet enclosed in some very basic two at a time socks on. i knit them quiiiiiite a while ago, but they were pretty much my first foray into socks... i've learnt a bit since then, including how to darn, so there's no excuse for the big ol' hole they're sporting in the back of them!

chunky knit beanie in forest green, featuring a chevron patterning in the body

on day twenty-three i rocked a pretty new hat for a while. it was the third in a series of pretty chunky knitted hats, two of which bb and i sported last week. i was hoping to get a whole heap knitted up and sent on to the beanie festival, but i just didn't have my head in the game this year! not to worry though... i know somewhere they'll be appreciated!

a pair of cabled 'kallan' mitts knitted in a blue, every so slightly tweedy yarn

day twenty four, these beautiful mitts kept my hands cosy as i pottered about the farm, tending to the chooks and the vegie patch. they're knit up in some yarn i scored from the bendigo back room which i still absolutely adore!

a simple ribbed scarf in a navy blue

day twenty five and i pinched another of bb's knits as i headed out the door for a walk in town with mum. we ended up shopping (ick, i really hate clothes shopping!) and i ended up in a change room with decent lighting, hence the gratuitous dressing room selfie ha ha.
the scarf is a super simple ribbed scarf, knit up in a navy 8ply from goodness knows where. it's been kicking around for quite a while this scarf!

navy ribbed hat, knit to match the aforementioned scarf

another of bb's knits borrowed for day twenty six. this time a wee hat, knitted to match the previous days scarf. i have no idea how it stays on his head as it is really, too small for my tiny head... and his is quite a bit bigger than mine!

wearing my 'kallan' cape, knitted in bendigo woollen mills 8ply luxury in a pale blue colour

day twenty seven saw me finally finish my kallan cape by finding the perfect buttons at work! it was a super busy day, so it then took me the rest of the day to get them sewn on... but i had great fun wearing it around the shop for the last little bit of my day, and then it kept me nice and warm on my travels home!

fresh off the needles 'queensland beach' headband in orange cascade 220

on day twenty eight, i finished off, and then wore a queensland beach headband. i haven't been able to get this headband design off my mind since i saw it grace the cover of take heart, and with my new shorter do, i figured it'd be the perfect pattern for keeping my ears nice and warm this winter!
it was a super easy, and relatively quick knit... and it certainly does the trick in keeping my ears warm!

another 'queensland beach' headband, knit simultaneously with the previous one, this time in blue though

while i was trying to choose a colour for the aforementioned headband, i was struggling to settle on just one... so i cast on two at the same time! i finished this one at the same time as the orange one, but wore it on day twenty eight, keeping my head cosy while traversing between the handknitters guild yarn market and home.
this snap is from a service centre between the two ha ha!

a simple bright blue beanie, used in my blog header

day thirty, i wore a beanie that i had almost forgotten i had ever made... strange considering it is physically a part of this blog! it forms the background of my blog header right up there at the top of my blog!
i remember absolutely adoring the texture of the stocking stitch and the colour, and having to use it as the background ha ha!
it's quite different to how i knit beanies these days though... with a big seam up the back! i couldn't imagine knitting a beanie flat any more! how times change!

gratuitous bump shot. 25 weeks. the ultimate in me-made wearing!

and finally, on day thirty one... i ran out of unique handmade items to wear! so i wore my biggest work in progress ha ha... my baby bump!

paired of course with my honey cowl and some handknit socks.

i think it'll be a rare day that i wouldn't reach for at least one handmade item to accessorise with after completing this month... particularly as winter is now well and truly upon us!
the last few mornings have been super frosty, clearing to beautiful crisp days and then turning to very chilly nights. the fire has been getting an absolute work out!

do you wear a lot of handmade items in your day to day? ever joined in with me made may?