Sunday, 30 June 2013

The Everyday 7 - A Wrong Turn...

... (after detouring the roads closed for Pres. Obama's visit), took us around the block, and another one, to a dead end, and the world's media, where our previous Pres. Mandela is fighting for his life.

Not so "everyday", then.

Waiting for news at Pretoria Heart Hospital

Thursday, 20 June 2013

A yarny tail, and a sad tale bag, oh yoga bag!

So near the end!  If I can just sit DOWN en FINISH it:

Attaching the tube to the bottom...luckily crochet is sooo forgiving and you can force it to fit. 

We had a long weekend,

(16 June - Youth Day)
nydaIn 1975 protests started in African schools after a directive from the then Bantu Education Department that Afrikaans had to be used on an equal basis with English as a language of instruction in secondary schools. The issue, however, was not so much the Afrikaans as the whole system of Bantu education which was characterised by separate schools and universities, poor facilities, overcrowded classrooms and inadequately trained teachers. On 16 June 1976 more than 20 000 pupils from Soweto began a protest march. In the wake of clashes with the police, and the violence that ensued during the next few weeks, approximately 700 hundred people, many of them youths, were killed and property destroyed.Youth Day commemorates these events) in between everything I sat down, but then Elle Pure Gold's inner devil came out:

Why you should roll a ball before starting

At this point I almost hoped the dogs would get to it:

Peering at the mess through the kitchen window

But on a Tuesday morning, there's nothing that a double-shot cappo with a friend can't solve!

Let's go on, then.


But then the week turned sour.

My friend Gené died.

She had kidney cancer.  

After I gave her the hat, I saw her twice, briefly, and then suddenly this happened.

She was a great teacher, a devoted mother, a brilliant, dramatic story reader. We'll really miss her.


And today is my dad's birthday.  He would have been 67 today.

We're adult orphans, my sis and I.  We lost our parents too early, as young adults, before we had kids.  It leaves you in a halfway space.   But I decided early on that I would not wallow on days like this, I'd choose to remember and celebrate.  So usually, on my mom's birthday, I'll go for tea & scones, my sis will bake a cake in Ireland, family members and friends join us in celebration and remembrance in Germiston, Potchefstroom, as far as Australia and Canada. Today, for my dad, there's a venison pie in the oven.  And sweet potato with cinnamon, and I'm thinking of souskluitjies for desert - is is cold enough!

Think I'll listen to this a bit.  Teary-eyed and all. One of his favourites.

Sunday, 16 June 2013

Craft Share - when we get together for crochet (and more)

I've previously mentioned Craft Share, a regular get-together with fellow hookers on a Friday.

Craft Share is hosted by the talented Cornel of the blog "I love pom-poms", and she is also a regular contributor to local magazine "Idees/Ideas".  It started as a "let me show you how to hook over coffee at my place"and has grown into a great get-together more or less every second Friday.  We rock up with our hooky in hand, but usually end up not doing much, because so much time is spent drooling over the others' beautiful work!  Really, this is the place where I have seen the most beautiful hooky work together in one room, and always leave inspired again.

Craft Sharing in Cornel's dining room

In the above pic, we were "absolutely relaxed" and acting "totally natural and at ease" (yeah, right) for a photoshoot of the annual edition of Sarie Kreatief, a local women's mag. Looking forward to see that edition!

I was very lucky that my sis was visiting here from Ireland and could join us for this event - her second magazine shoot in a week!  We had to pose, chatting and showing off our work.  My Rainbow Ripple came to visit from the beach house, and I'm showing off one of my flowery scarves.  Sis had a beanie she just started.

That's me, pulling the face.  Why, why, WHY?

And here's Elsbeth, illustrator and artist, on the left, with Cornel. My green picnic basket peeps out in the corner.  I must still show-and-tell about the lining I made for it, from vintage fabric bought all the way from Switzerland, from Annette of My Rose Valley!

Two talented friends

Craft Share is a visual feast, everything is pretty, from the hooky, to the snacks and dogs that join us :-)

Something to drink

Inspiration - Cornel knits a mat for her beach house with thick rope and humongous needles

Inspiration - a beautiful blanket hooked up in Vinnis

Inspiration - a basketful of beautiful Vinnis yarns

"Architectural" this pose was described.  They don't just sit or lie down, they take up position

Pretending to work

Still chatting and posing

At every Craft Share, Cornel photographs us with our work, and post this on her Craft Share Page on Facebook. It's always a treat to see what she does with the photos, to catch up when you missed a Craft Share, or just to refer back to what you worked on.  As I often give my work away, this would usually be one of the best photos a have of a finished piece (or the journey towards finishing!). My first Craft Share was captured in the 4th from left shot in the top row - extremely camera shy, and I can't even remember what that green piece in my hands was! The last shot (Jou Gha!) was taken this Friday - almost finished with the bag for my yoga mat.

Almost two years of Craft Shareing

I always look forward to Craft Share. I've made so many great friends who inspire me each and every time, and who share my love of hooking...thanks, Cornellie!

Thursday, 13 June 2013

Worldwide Knit-in-Public...Hooking in Pretoria

This week is Worldwide Knit-in-Public Week!

So we hooked, cause that's what we do, and there were some knitters as well, and we chose a nice, prominent, public spot, and sat down at Tribeca in Lynnwood Bridge, Pretoria.

Taking over the yuppies' spot

(Behold the beautiful blankets under the table, up there at 9 o'clock!)

They serve a great breakfast and cappo, and my current favourite everywhere...the flourless chocolate cake.
And what do you say about a place that serves their sugar packets in Le Creuset?  

Le Creuset et le crochet

Of course we were not just crocheting away...each of us quickly hooked one flower (pattern: Yvestown Flower Coaster), cause there was some dressing up to do...

If there is artwork, we'll bomb it!

 She looked a bit cold, up there on her donkey...

Much better now!

Ties in nicely with our yarn bombing over the weekend, don't  you think?

PS...some of the hooking that took place over coffee...

Beautiful blankets in the making and finished

Desiring some One of a Kind yarns

Saturday, 8 June 2013

Yarn Bomb 2013!

It started with my friend Maryna talking about putting legwarmers on the cow when it's winter, and then I was hooking beanies and had a second idea, and we remembered about yarn-bombing some time and we checked the dates for this year and then it all came together...and we yarn-bombed the cow today!

Nipple caps :-)

Irene Village Mall in Pretoria just begged to be yarn-bombed.  The mall is cow-themed, as a nod to the historic Irene farms nearby.  There's a huge wire cow outside, four legs and an udder inside the square, two squatting metal men, and a mosaic horse and a sheep.   Plenty of scope and space for hooked items :-)

Even the serviette holders play along!

So after quickly calling around, meeting up , collecting a few squares and spares, we met up early this morning to warm up Irene's inhabitants.  First up were the mosaic...animals outside the coffee shop.  As they are already colourful and have very thick neck, they each only got a tiny saddle.  

Is it s horse?  Is it a sheep?

(We sat inside afterward and watched as kids climbed these animals, pulled on the strings of the "saddles", clearly enjoying themselves to bits).

The udder in the square got four beanies over the teats.  Adult-sized would more or less work, and we made it up a little longer that usual, to ensure a  good fit over the teats.  

There now, that's much warmer!

We would have loved to make leg warmers for the legs, but time was just too tight.  Maybe next year...

Can you tell we were a bit excited ?

We had lots of fun with our metal men! 

The cowl was a perfect fit

Granny squares to brighten him up

They immediately look friendlier, so we got cheeky and sat on their laps...

He didn't like his first beanie, so I changed it. Yes, better :-)

Tuesday, 4 June 2013

Of yarn-bombing and public hooking

Although, obviously, we'll...hook :-)

Here's some of the tools for our first little yarn bomb:

I'm also hoping to get to a flower for the fence of the nursery school with the very, very unhappy owner nearby...

And Wednesday 12 June, we'll go for a coffee (ah, that's not new...but Tribeca haven't hosted us :-)

Who else is taking part?? 

Saturday, 1 June 2013

National Wool Week

South Africa's first National Wool Week kicked off this week and of course a friend and I went to have a look!

The exhibit was held in Sandton City in Johannesburg, a quick 25 min  trip on the Gautrain, happily avoiding all traffic. There would be great coffee at some point, and promises of maybe a ball or two of some  beautiful merino.

Breakfast at The Walnut Grove

Mmm...and then we had enough energy to take on the mission and...down the steps and round the corner...and I was stopped in my tracks:

A bag named "desire"

The size, the colour, the handles...the price.  Oh, this was difficult to put down!  Cowgirlblues, check it OUT.  The name comes from here...“If you take any activity, any art, any discipline, any skill, take it and push it as far as it will go, push it beyond where it has ever been before, push it to the wildest edge of edges, then you will force it into the realm of magic.”
Tom Robbins, Even Cowgirls Get The Blues -

They are there, making magic.

And this is the Eva bag.

Sigh and drool.

And there was more:

A spiderweb-soft throw

Snugly scarves...

...and cowls.

Karoo Moon beanies

Beautiful, soft, finefinefine rectangular shawls from Karoo Moon

A large knitted throw with amazing colour variation - Karoo Moon

Upcycle your old tyre with some knit/crochetwork

Some woolly friends came along!

All dressed up for the occasion

Some filming while we were there.

Yes, there were two men, knitting and crocheting in the back!  That was part of a charity knit-together if you had time to sit down.  My attention was, however, diverted by the perspex box filled with merino handspun, and 4 balls came home with me.  I started hooking on the train!  Just to see how it would work up :-)

There will be a dark charcoal and teal scarf in the making, at least one will be a cowl, knitted, or hooked...?

We'll see. 

Sigh. Desire.

Roll on next year, for the next National Wool Week