Monday, August 31, 2009


Not so long ago I was reading a post about bibs that a mum was deciding over and I thought the idea of a pelican bib was kind of weird. (There is an example of a plastic moulded one here.) What would you need a pocket on a bib for? Now I know. My DS is trying out finger food and I can see now that a pocket would prevent so much of the food ending up in his lap. The high chair tray only covers so much then there is the gap between the bib and the tray where everything seems to end up. I have been draping him in a tea towel and then puttting a bib on in an effort to not have 3 changes of clothing a day.

So the next design project is going to be some bibs with pockets. I'll have to do some research. I have a great normal bib pattern that I have been using for the last 2 months. I hope to have a few in my Etsy store soon, for sale. Here are some WIPs they just need some velcro to finish them off.

Next time I'll get a shot of the bub in one. He is so cute I have thousands of pics of him so will have to introduce him to this blog as my chief model.

Craft, social applications and libraries

While reviewing Custom Knits yesterday I had a quick scan of the patterns that were up on Ravelry. I noticed that there is "search your local libraries" hyperlink on the left hand side. How cool is this? It links you through to WorldCat and you can find the book in a library near you.

Unfortunately it couldn't find a copy in Canberra (even though I have a current copy from ACT Library service) I guess the data that they are drawing from does not include this service. There were plenty of other Australian libraries listed and they even had how far away the library is from me, e.g. Waverly Council Library has a copy and it is only 245 kilometres away!

Also I don't spend enough time on Ravelry, it is really helpful. I had a quick flick through people who had blogged about the pattern that I was interested and I looked at how other knitter's had completed Ingenue. I think this social extension to patterns helps you determine if you are going to have any problems with a pattern and you can see real women wearing the style. (Helpful for us short people who are not model size)

I love techy stuff, it is so hard to keep ahead of it though. I feel out of touch even though I have only been away from work for 7 months I don't feel that I have been keeping up the exponenetial growth of social tools and how libraries are hooking into them. Oh well, I'll be back to work soon enough and then I'll have to be super-mum with no time to spare at all.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Review: Custom Knits

I recently managed to get a copy of Custom Knits, by Wendy Bernard, from the library and thought I'd write a quick review. I didn't realise until I read the introduction that I'd read her work before through reading her blog, where I have admired her patterns for a while. The knitting world is so small isn't it?

I love top-down construction methods of knitting and was excited to see that you could do it with set-in sleeves. It was kind of a light bulb moment when I read that. D'oh. Her instructions are pretty clear and I like the way that she gives you options/tips on how to alter the patterns.

Of course the test of any pattern book is the actual number of patterns that you are likely to use. There are 11 in this one that I would be very happy to try so I'm even contemplating buying my own copy. The extra information that she includes like short row knitting and making your own dressmakers dummy makes this book a solid investment. The inclusion of classic designs mean that you could use this text for years to come adapting to the latest fashions with ease.

I have a bit of a problem with the styling of the shots. I know that she lives in California so there is not much need for excessive clothing but there seems to be a lot of leg in these photos. Is it just me or are there a lot of shorts and undies? Am I showing my age? I'm really not that old, but I think if you are wearing a cardi it is likely that your legs will be just as cold as your arms and would probably be covered up as well. At least you can see all the details of the knits, they are all shot in full daylight, which is the complete opposite of another book that I have from the library at the moment. ( I'll review it later it this week.)

Fave pattern: I'd really like to try knitting up Ingenue (Ravelry link)

I like the wide neck on this one, the length in the body seems perfect, I think that I would prefer long sleeves, so that is one mod I'd do to make it my own. It is very rare that I follow a pattern the whole way through, I always have to a large bust alteration and I usually change the length of the body - short stuff.

It is silly that I have only discovered this at the end of winter, so I'll have to plan on doing it for next winter.