Orange is the new cat

orange cat steals orange yarn

Criminal cat!

Just a  little illustration I made. I don’t have much knitting time at the moment.


finished: Impossible Girl Socks and Cuffs

Impossible Girl Socks by Madeline Gannon. Deliberate ankle socks for Summer. Knit on a tight gauge (72 stitches over the foot) so they still took 65 grams of yarn. I love this speckled yarn, it’s so Raku ceramics.

Knit to celebrate 10 years of Dutch Sock Knitters Group on Ravelry.

I added some cuffs, for Winter. They used up 20 grams.
How can there have bloomed three roses over the weekend, it’s November?!

Weird Wool Wednesday: a cat yarn surprise box!


Which knitter do you know that loves to draw cats? That’s right, I made the sketch for the PR above!

It’s for a yarn club in January from Het Wolbeest, the indie dyer with the ice cream parlour and the wonderful cats and dogs I visited two weeks ago. It will consist of four instalments of handdyed fingering yarn based on four cats!

This is a luxurious surprise box including full skeins, minis, goodies and cat artwork. Start the new year with cats who appreciate knitting and knitting appreciating cats! Ships internationally too.

I’m going to make another drawing to promote this. And I’m getting this box! I love cats and handdyed yarn.

Hand forging an iron knive and a sewing tool.

Yesterday I forged an iron knive and a tool to help with spinning and sewing:
Mes smeden ijzersmeden workshop Veghel Phoenix Cultuur NoordkadeMes smeden ijzersmeden workshop Veghel Phoenix Cultuur Noordkade
It was a one day workshop with a real black smith. A treat to my husband and me because we were so resilient with the court cases during the Summer months 🙂

INTERMEZZO just skip to the next picture
(Will you believe it: a mediator appeared on our doorstep on this Friday morning! Uninvited, unannounced. A bold woman who then stood in my living room and had a 30 minute conversation with me which felt very manipulative. It wrecked my whole day, the stress of being interrupted just as I was resting and then having to mind my words. It was awful. Ambushed in my own home!

It does emphasize that I do not often have to deal with bullies or aggressively extrovert people. I’m a lucky introvert in that regard. 🙂

She’s not court appointed, she’s a communication expert and official mediator hired by the manure plant people who had invited me to a mediation process but I had already answered that that was not appropriate at this stage. She just took her chances and came by anyway. I’d never imagined! I was so clear in my written “no”.

Well, in one go she used up all the politeness I have reserved for a new random encounter. Next time I’ll know to not only speak the extrovert way but act accordingly too: close the door in their face.)

Anyway. Knives and tools:

In a well equiped black smith forgery in Veghel. It’s situated in an old factory that’s repurposed to dozens of studios, skilled craft working places, food courts, cinema and the best chips/fries of the country. Phoenix Cultuur offers many courses and workshops there.

The smith is Niek Eikelenboom from Black Oak forgery in Schijndel:

He’s a big fan of wool because it doesn’t attract dirt, it keeps warm when it’s wet and you can wear it near blacksmithing and you won’t get harmed. In fact we were told to only wear natural fibres for the workshop. No plastics or fun furs that could melt in the heat.

For lunch we popped to the neighbours that serve the best chips/fries there are Pieperz:
 pic by Stadskrant Veghel
Pieperz on google maps

The outside of Pieperz with the glass doors to the blacksmith forgery in the back ground:
 owner unknown

In the Netherland you’re not allowed to carry a knive in the street. That’s why sewing a leather is part of the workshop. Again natural materials: leather, waxed thread, steel needles. Love it!

When we got home and had a shower I put on my pyama pants and settled into my knitting chair with cat, knive and sock and had a quiet Saturday night.

Blacksmithing is amazing! You can make your own tools, exactly to your own requirements! The knive is made to the width of your own hand which makes it ergonomic. The forgery was fool of tools that were customized. My hand got twitchy just thinking about the possibilities! Scissors, pliers, grabby tools, stabby tools, melting pots, cooking tools, poking tools. Useful things!

That’s why yesterday, for our extra project, I thought I’d love to blacksmith a shawl pin, a fibula:
Fíbula Romana. Museo Arqueolóxico de Santa Trega. A Guarda. Galiza. Património Nacional Galego Roman shawl pins in Museum Santa Trega in Galicia, by Galician National Heritage
Fibeln -- Fibulas Kinds of filbula shawl pins explained in German by Hiltibold

But I reckoned it would be too heavy for my woolen shawls, even the ones from bulky handspun. And I’m not that good of a black smith either, it is so much about concentration and fine eye hand coordination. Not about force at all. My husband has a knack for it. Not I. Not yesterday. Frankly I had trouble keeping upright throughout the day. I had had a bad night, thanks to the mediator, and had to be propped up with coffee, cortisol, chocolate, salt and chips/fries. I had a little cry over lunch…

But all beginners were deemed good enough to make a bottle opener, with a round twisty bit in the middle. I just changed one part of the thing into a sharp and flat end and now I’ve got a new sewing tool:
handforged iron sewing tool
handforged iron sewing toolhandforged iron sewing tool

It’s called a seam stiletto I believe. Akin to a seam ripper. It’s a good orifice hook too. And I can probably also open bottles with it.

Finished: handspun Feather and Fan shawl

My plan for larger stripes at the bottom did not work out as well as I thought. I’m also not convinced about the obvious “stripeyness” of this shawl, I prefer the more toned down green one.

Still, I’m wearing it today. It’s nice and soft and just as functional as my green one. I think when worn the colours may blend in with each other, conveying a greyish purply shawl. Definitely less contrast then the green one.

It’s the same size as the shawl Ribbels made:

I used up all the 100 grams and all the 357 m. I think I got 1 m left of the Dutch Wool Diva Sassy.

Wool beast Wool feast: knitters’ party at Het Wolbeest in Swalmen.

Today I visited Het Wolbeest to celebrate her birthday. Previous I’ve been to her studio, for felting bags, and the ice cream parlour. Today we sat in her living room. On the wall is the art that’s featured in her ravatar:
wolbeest wolfeestje

There was also art on the table:
wolbeest wolfeestje

We sat and knitted and enjoyed ourselves 🙂

The Woolbeast has some fantastic Wool Beast Wool Feast Beasts:
wolbeest wolfeestje Molly. wolbeest wolfeestje Floki. wolbeest wolfeestje Benny.


This was my gift to Het Wolbeest, who loves cosy Autumn forest creatures and tea and wool:
wolbeest wolfeestjewolbeest wolfeestje
wolbeest wolfeestje
Together with some “apple pie tea” from Thee en Kruid (it’s called “notendroom” in the shop but I swear it’s apple pie tea).

colour successes

It works! The way I spun up the roving. Hopefully now there will come longer stretches of colour and no rows with multiple colours in one row.

This is how I walked to sewing class yesterday:

Totally unplanned colour coordinated! Those handspun socks make me really happy.

I’m wearing them again today, with the dress. Wearing it into the city even because we’re going out for coffee and cake later because we filed the papers with the court this morning. I’m pretty nervous about them because it’s all been done under my name solely. I still need to learn that I’m just a name/number to the system, it’s not about me as a person. Cake helps with that I have heard. I will investigate. For the greater public good.

First results are in:

Test subjects are positive. Here too colour is of importance. More tests needed.


effect of coffee and colours has now worn off:

I fail to sew the shoulder seams correctly heehee

Weird Wool Wednesday: fortifying sheep

I drew this and it fortifies me while I deal with the papers for the court case against the manure plant. Papers are due this weekend!

I finished my gnome dress and wearing it also fortifies me mentally:

There’s a bow in the back!

It has a lot of wearing ease so I can wear it over undergarments for Winter and move in it or sit all crumpled up on the couch and push my belly out.

The raspberry pink is sturdy canvas so I do not have to be careful wearing this dress. I can jump in puddles if I want to. I don’t want to. I think. But I could.

It has pockets (duh) in the sideseams that are lined with the gnome fabric which is of no special use except it makes me happy. The whole dress is lined, for warmth and easy slipping over my head. That’s another advantage of wearing ease and a wide neckline: no need for zipper or fasting.

Now that it’s finished I’d love to make another one.