Happy 10th Birthday Richmond Knitters!

This year is the 10th year since the Richmond Knitters knitting group began, and yesterday we celebrated in a big way!DSC06558DSC06560You can’t have a birthday party without cake!DSC06568Or matching gluten free cupcakes! Fantasy Cakes did a wonderful bringing this to fruition. I can highly recommend them for all of your creative cake needs!DSC06581DSC06587DSC06588We celebrated with a high tea and knitting and trivia! A Richmond Knitter tradition 🙂DSC06594DSC06595 We had a lovely baby visit (sorry Alice, the camera is too fancy to get everyone in focus!)DSC06596Things went a bit quiet over trivia… DSC06601DSC06602DSC06604DSC06608Then there was time for lots of happy photosDSC06614And the cake cutting…DSC06618And even some telegrams from our overseas Richmond Knitter expats… I chickened out and got Catherine to read the last one, my mascara was not waterproof!DSC06619Happy Birthday to us all! And here’s to another 10 years.

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Richmond Knitters love crochet

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For almost 10 years now, the Richmond Knitters group have gone by the name ‘Richmond Knitters’, but the people who come along are not just Knitters and we don’t just knit at knit night.

It surprises me when people think that we only Knit. While I was at The Craft Sessions retreat this year, I met someone who thought that Crocheters would not be welcome to our group, how insane does that sound?!

After further reflection, I can see it from their perspective. It’s in our name… I’d like to clear that up right here and now, that is simply not the case!

We are also a group of crocheters…

And sewists…

Weavers, spinners… and of course knitters.

We’ve even had a needleworker along. (Disclaimer: the lighting is not the brightest, but they do turn the lights up for us).

A few years ago, a couple of us took up spinning yarn and had a laugh about changing the group name to Richmond Spinners, but sanity prevailed, we can’t bring our wheels into the pub obviously…

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What’s in a name? Do I/we need to consider changing ours to something else?

I hope not… I’m kind of attached.

Yarn art in the city

Last weekend was White Night in Melbourne city. There were a number of cool things to go see around town when the sun went down, but I hate crowds so I didn’t venture in.IMG_2068That didn’t matter because some of the installations were still up around town during the week, and obviously I had to go check out this display of white lace.

The artist Annette Fitton, aka ‘Nini & Wink’. is responsible for the display of 21 trees. It was a solo undertaking. And then the mind boggles.

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21 trees, (on Flinders St near Spring St) all with different, intricate lace designs.IMG_2070

IMG_2066All handknit, all by one person.

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I was quite taken by this one.

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… those bobbly things… they’re nups, (pronounced noups, like soup). I bow down to Nini & Wink, truly stunning, and very fancy, sophisticated yarn art.

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I wonder if she has some well-dressed trees at home?

Richmond Knitters Retreat 2015

I’ve just caught my breath after a lovely weekend away with the Richmond Knitters.

It began with lunch as our meet-up point on Friday, and from there we slid into a very relaxing, do nothing but knit (or quilt) and eat kind of a weekend.

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It was a weekend of Two’s.

IMG_0512Two cakes

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Two kinds of wine. Mulled and Yarn Bombing themed.

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Two quilts

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IMG_0518Two spinning wheels

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There was lots of food and lots of laughs

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IMG_1618And a bit of knitting

IMG_0498It was very enjoyable and I can’t wait to do it again!

Before

I’m doing a bit of a tidy’io today.

This is my needle stash, to the untrained eye it is a black hole.

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This could take all day, or I might just put it off for another week to sort.

I just wanted to stop by today to announce the winner/s of the Clincher pattern competition!

Thanks to knitickyboo, Kris and OzKnitter for your comments, for your efforts you will each receive the Clincher pattern! Enjoy 🙂

Richmond Knitters goes to Stitches West!

You know you’re an obsessed Knitter when you travel 20 hours one way for a Knitting Festival.

Debs and I are back from our whirlwind trip to San Francisco and Stitches West.

The Back Story is I lived in SF eight years ago and at that time I went to my first Stitches West. Not knowing just how large a show it was, and being particularly new to my obsession, I only had about 3 hours at the market itself. Since then I have vowed to return.

And return I did. I managed to convince another Richmond Knitter, Debs, that this was a most worthwhile trip. Enter the shopping partner and enabler!

The standard question from stall holders at the market (upon hearing the accent), did you come all this way for this? Yes, yes we did (well it was the main reason).

Here’s a few photos of our time at the show.

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Here we are right before visiting the market on Thursday night, market preview night.

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We were quite the fangirls, meeting lots of Knitting Royalty and having our ‘selfies’ taken with them.

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From left: Jane Richmond, Me, Shannon Cook, Jill Draper

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Here I am after my fabulous class with Anna Zilboorg. More on that on my personal blog soon.

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Debs with Hilary Smith Callis

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Here we are having a blast with Stephen West and StevenBe

I also took the opportunity to try on a few of Stephen’s designs:

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I really like this second one, it’s called Lost and Found and is a new design on Rav. Knit-along anyone?

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Debs with Jane and Shannon again! We kept running into these girls, there was lots of laughter and fun.

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And I met Romi on preview night. Wow, she was sooooo… nice. I’m pretty excited to be participating in her mystery knit-along held with a Verb for Keeping warm.

Here’s the yarn I chose for my project:

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A fun photo with Jill, whilst she was helping pick out a colour for a sweater project.

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I tried on Hannah Fettig’s ‘Contented Cardigan’ at Alana Dakos’ Never Not Knitting Stand. I’m totally making this. I also had my photo taken with Alana (and let her know about the several ‘Little Oak’ cardigans that have been made by Richmond Knitters), which I think you’ll find on Debs Instagram feed…

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That’s about it for our Stitches West experience (apart from the truck-load of yarn I’ve come home with!). It was amazing, totally worth it, and I guess you had to be there to appreciate the excitement!

I’ll be writing a series of posts on my blog over the next week or so to re-cap aspects of our trip, starting with my Stitches West Loot! If you haven’t already you can also check out our Instagram Feed for my pictures from our trip.

 

 

So you want to join a Knitting group?

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Well you’ve come to the right place… but before I blow the trumpet of the Richmond Knitters I thought I should talk about the great things about joining any Knitting Group.

1. You can make friends. You like people don’t you? You love knitting? Voila! Knitting friends.

2. Attending a Knitting group makes knitting so much more interesting. 50 yards of stocking stitch gets boring fast, but a distraction… and completing rows and rows of knitting is time well spent.

3. A place to be yourself and share your passion. No one will judge the size of your stash or your number of WIPs at a knitting group, we’re all in the same boat (well most of us are). What’s more is that at a knitting group, Knitters speak your language without their eyes glazing over.

4. Inspiration. Through sharing WIPs, FO’s and new purchases, there is much inspiration as well as envy. No idea what to knit next? At a knit night you’ll get plenty of inspiration and advice.

5. Something to look forward to. Getting away from your family one night a week, or one afternoon a month can be good for you (and probably for them). Doing something you enjoy in the company of others. Rough day at work? Monday night knitting is a good cure for Monday-itis, just saying.

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Now the hard part: Showing up to your first knit night.

Firstly, and this is something seasoned knitting group attendees seem to forget (I know I do). EVERYONE is a little nervous about attending their first knitting group meet. It’s only natural to be a little freaked out about it, oh how we forget. For one thing, if you’re coming in cold YOU. DON’T. KNOW. ANYONE. THERE. That’s a pretty scary thing, particularly when it’s likely everyone else knows each other, thoughts of high school start creeping in and that’s it, you’re not going.

Can I just say: everyone goes through this thought process, but you have to be brave! Most knitting groups I’ve ever attended have been scary for the first five seconds. They’ve all been welcoming and fun and people you don’t know will want to talk to you. It’s something Knitters have in common, we all want to talk about our knitting and we are all friendly, that’s why we joined a knitting group.

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Tip 1: Bring something you’re enjoying to knit to your first meet. But nothing too interesting unless you’re some kind of brainiac and can follow a lace chart whilst participating in 2 conversations AT. THE. SAME. TIME. It’s been done, but I wouldn’t recommend it. It’s ok to bring multiple projects, the ‘difficult’ one could be for show and tell. Most evening meets have dim lighting, so knitting something ‘light’ in colour is the go, also plain knitting is winning!

Tip 2: Bring some Show and Tell if you want. A book, magazine or your latest yarn purchase, if you want to make people swoon. Sometimes show and tell can be a finished object, I fully endorse milking that.

Tip 3: Don’t be afraid to ask other people questions about themselves. Just because you’re the newbie doesn’t mean other Knitters don’t want to chat. It also takes the pressure off you when someone is telling you about themselves.

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Tip 4: Don’t be afraid to ask questions about knitting. The skill levels of any knitting group varies quite a lot. Just because you attend a knitting group, doesn’t mean you have to know everything about knitting, no one expects you to (if you can cast-on and knit, you’re in). People are open to offering help and knowledge, it makes them feel good to help another knitter out so don’t be shy about asking.

The Richmond Knitters have been going strong for 8 years. It’s my favourite way to spend my Monday nights, amongst smart people and fun knitters (men and women). With knitters arriving around 6pm and onwards, we eat, chat and knit. And there’s always stories and laughter. We are always looking for new members who are passionate about knitting/crocheting and or hand-spinning.

If you’ve read this far, you should just come along and see what it’s like, I’m pretty sure you won’t regret it.

Richmond Knitters
Every Monday night from 6pm
The Spread Eagle Hotel 
372 Bridge Rd, Richmond, Victoria, Australia 3121

Glossary:
FO: Finished Object
WIP: Work in Progress
Stash: The yarn/fibre you have that is not attached to a current WIP.
My husband told me to put this glossary in, but I don’t think you really need it.

 

Spoilers! In the mail this week

I’ve had a cold this week. It turns out it was nastier than what I gave it credit for. I don’t do ‘sick’ very well. It’s just as well, it doesn’t happen very often, and I don’t even get a serious cold each year. Looks like this is my off-year.

But this week has been a very good mail week. And that improves the situation greatly. They were ‘planned’ mail items as both deliveries were from clubs.

First to arrive at my desk (yeah I only took one day off work, stupid, stupid, stupid), was my next shipment of Stranded in Oz. Wow is it beautiful! I think it’s my favourite instalment so far. These are going to be something luxurious, I’m not sure I can make it into socks, but I will consider it!

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Next up was my first instalment of the Southern Cross Fibres Club. It is jaw-droopingly beautiful, if I were a colour way this would be it. I’ve decided not to order more of it (which the club allows, best club ever), for space reasons, no that’s not true, well it’s kind of true because I need to knit more with my handspun, I need to progress to larger garment sized items made from my handspun. Bottom line, I need to knit more of my handspun and plan accordingly. Imagine a cardigan made from this?!

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Buying yarn feels so good when you’re feeling low, like I was this week. I might also be receiving 5 skeins of sock yarn very soon. I’m very excited. And a book, but that was purchased before I got sick.

Great minds

So I may have inaccurately suggested online that Susanne was also following (read: copying) my recent knitting projects! I am a little embarrassed to read here that Susanne has in fact made 5 Debbie Bliss baby jackets… Whilst I’ve made just the one! Who’s following who hey?!

And here is mine: I’ve just sewn on the button and snap this morning. The idea to tie a knot on the button as decoration came from the owner of Buttonmania. I’ve reinforced the button somewhat, but may have to redo it altogether if Marilyn gets her fingers into it.

Who’s in for the ‘Still-light’ knit along beginning Jan 1? I’m going to need all the motivation I can get through such a mammoth project, won’t you help me out? Sharon’s giving us a head start...

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