Saturday, December 31, 2011

Last day of 2011..

As it is the last day of the year, I thought I should post something.
Today one of my sheep died. It was not unexpected as it has been unhappy for more than a week. I could not detect any flystrike and assumed it was an internal issue. He would drink and chew a little grass, so I let nature take it's course. He did not look like he was suffering, just unhappy. It was sad as it was my first actual sheep death since I started in 2007, so I consider I was lucky. This fellow was born here in 2008.
At present I have several projects on the go including some handspinning that I am going to give to a friend for her 60th birthday next week. It is a natural grey which I will then dye in her favourite colour. (So her daughter says.)
More skeins of the white alpaca have been completed, and I am balling them up for the client as I know how extra busy she is as a busy GP.
Wishing all my followers and visitors a Happy and Safe New Year and we hope 2012 will be a better one.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

It's Christmas...

Wishing everyone a Happy and Safe Christmas. Thank you for visiting my blog and website over the is last year. I hope you continue to visit.
Here in Victoria, Australia the temperatures are rising and we will will be having a traditional hot lunch tomorrow. The important thing is it will be with family. There will be about 25 of us including little ones, and that is not all of them as other family members had to make other plans for their own families.
I will miss my middle daughter Rebecca this year, who is unable to come home from Port Moresby for Christmas. Last contact was she is still working so hope she has a good day tomorrow.

 Here are some dyed grey fleeces in 100gm lots that I will be putting on the website. They have a little bit of VM but should flick out.
 This a grey cardigan I have been working on the knitting machine, it has eyelets around the raglan sleeves and lace patterning up to the armhole edge on the cardigan fronts. It is hip length and will fit 40 inch chest (X large). The neckband and front bands still to be completed. This will be up for sale as well. The wool was processed for the North East Yarns and is a fine 3ply (fingering or laceweight?) Natural colour grey.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Dyeing wool....

I have started dyeing some of my lighter grey fleeces, and since I have several full fleeces weighing between 3 and 5 kgms, this may take some time in the kitchen, in between meals. I am not scientific about dyeing, and just add colours and wait for the surprise. These will be in 100gm lots, easily carded for spinning or felting projects.

The vegie garden is starting to look much better with tomatoes, zucchinis, silver beet, beetroot, potatoes, and pumpkins showing some growth. A little more rain followed by warmer days should bring on good growth.

The calf is weaned and will have to be taken to the larger paddock to ingratiate itself amongst the other cows and calves.

The sheep have been getting extra grain and hay now the grass is drying off.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Winding down for Christmas...

I am winding down the markets with only one to go at Girgarre before Christmas.
We are having a surprise party for my father's 80th birthday the week before Christmas, so will be able to catch up with family that we haven't seen in awhile.
Fleeces have been baled up in the North East for value adding.
The remainder of the fleeces will be taken over to Riverina wool company in Moama, and some will remain for wool dyeing and spinning. I am hoping to have 100gm lots of hand dyed Corriedale fleeces for sale on the website and at the markets, next year.
A gentleman has approached me asking if I could use his Saxon merino fleeces. As these are very fine fleeces, I have offered to trial washing and dyeing and making small rolags with the handcarders as I don't think they will be suitable through the motorized carder. Could be very interesting. I will be getting these samples sometime after Christmas. The possible outcome may be suitable for felters.
The Vat room has almost been cleaned out of fleeces in preparation for the dairy revamp. Hard finding a new home for fleeces.
In the garden, tomato lants are growing, beetroot, zucchini, and bean seeds have sprouted. Have to keep up the watering with a lack of rain.
I am now ready to do the bands on the grey cardigan. I am happy with the lacework, and my compatriots love it, so I might get this in the Beechworth Old Schoolhouse Gallery for display.

 I am having a serious look at my natural fleeces and am working at spinning these for most of the summer, as well as my spinning commission.

Just another scarf that has been knitted on the machine.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Getting organised...

Although I seem to be very quiet here, I am working at crafting. The garden is still getting a makeover, and we are waiting on quotes for revamping the dairy. If quotes too high it may not be viable.
Baling day for the North East Yarns will be at the end of the month, so will look forward to catching up there at Wangaratta.
In the meantime I have lambs fleeces and bellies and pieces to go over to Riverina Wool in Moama, just have to find a day.
Another cotton poncho has been completed, and a little wool jumper needs to be sewn up before doing the neckband. I have a Natural Grey 3 ply wool on the machine which is going to be a cardigan.
And of course I am spinning some natural coloured grey yarn as well as the white Alpaca for a client.
Diamond pattern Cotton Capelet/Poncho
Who said there is not enough hours in the day!!!
Party Coaster Set
We had only 19mm rain last night but that will freshen everything up.
Saturday is busy with catching up at Mandie's, spinning (EGMTK) and then to Echuca for a Linen party at my daughter's unit.
The Girgarre Market is on this Sunday morning as well.

Friday, October 21, 2011


...have been shorn. Luckily just before this hot weather, which is going to follow up with rain, so will have to watch for flystrike. Very bad last spring and summer. I now have to decide where to send the lamb's fleeces as they are only 1 - 2 inches long. The full fleeces I will spin myself or sell privately or send away, and the remaining will go in the shared Baling Day in the North East after we decide what to do.
I have now started carding (prior to spinning) a white Alpaca fleece for a customer. I also am organising some gifts of natural coloured wool batts for some acquaintances who I met at the spinning workshop in August.

I will be at Riverside Plaza Market in Shepparton this Saturday from 9am to 2pm.

Making himself comfortable.
 I am minding the farm while Leigh is away visiting his son overseas, so a bit quiet here, with only the cats, the sheep and cattle to talk to. speaking of cats, another has popped in and if it hangs around that will make 4, and they don't even belong to us. My daughter's cat of course is settling in really well since he came to us in June, much better life in the outdoors than in a city apartment.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

I cannot believe I have....

....not written anything for a month. Some catching up to do.
Tomorrow is shearing day for my black coloured sheep who are starting to look decidedly bedraggled and daggy. Praying no flystrike, after a couple of humid days.
Sunday off to the Mooroopna Farmer's Market from 8.00am to 1 pm.
Although I haven't blogged I have not been idle.
The two granddaughters have turned 3 and 2 respectively in September and October, and birthdays can be busy.
I have completed the Alpaca for a customer and am about to start another for another client. In the meantime I have to catch up and get some of my own fleeces done.

Granddaughters helping feed the calf.

Machine knit Lace Capelet/Poncho

Handspun Natural Mid grey
 I have added some new items to the website so go and take a look to see what's there.
Work is ongoing on the farm with repairs to fencing. Calving is finished with 23 calves. We lost one cow whose calf we are now feeding and one calf whose mother was too young. Some of these Lowline heifers seem to matue much sooner and therefore while the bull is in with the mothers accidents can happen but you don't know until much later.
We are currently looking at the possibility of getting the dairy up and running again, so that the farm can make an income. Oh well early mornings. Maybe I can make some cheeses again, nothing like my own Camembert, fetta or haloumi.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Ok the car is packed....

.. and wool carded for spinning.
Off to Mooroopna Farmers market tomorrow after a break of 2 months. Previously I have been at the Bendigo Wool Show and a workshop with Jacey Boggs, the Insubordiknit spinner. Hope the weather holds up, as it looks grey and the Barometer has dropped.
Have to get up extra early as we always feed the sheep first, but we now have a calf to feed as her mum didn't make it. She was an older jersey cow( as are the others) and we weren't sure she was in calf, but calve she did, but from the outset you could see her slowing. Gorgeous heifer calf for future generations.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Okay... blogging entries have been very poor lately but I have been using Facebook for quick entries.
Now, on the farm we have been calving very slowly and spread out, unfortunately, and we still have one to go. One of the older cows gave birth to twins, luckily 2 heifers, so a lot of growing for these tiny girls. i haven't taken any photos yet, because the day after they were born Mum wasn't well and had to be treated with Calcium successfully, but soon after one of the twins went missing, and could not be found anywhere. We have a lot of long grass around the channel area, so heaven only knows where she went, but after a week of not finding her she turned. So 15 cows and 15 calves in one paddock. We are very happy! Another paddock we have 10 Lowlines, ( 4 of which are heifers calving early next year) with 6 calves. In another paddock the Lowline bull has 7 heifers and a steer to keep him busy. Lots of animals now plus 44 sheep.

Of course I am always working at my crafting and have finally finished a machine knit cardigan, so hopefully am getting the hang of the machines now.
Handspinning always goes on, with the Alpaca for a client as a priority but I have done some natural coloured Corriedale for the stall.

And some seing, and I need to add more of these. Here is a sample.

So, since it is my birthday today, it is time to get ready to go to Echuca for lunch with my mother, children, sister, etc.

Thursday, August 25, 2011


..the workshop has been over a few days. It was a hive of activity from the moment we checked in and continued with food, fibre, frolicking, wine and Spinning. I don't think there was anyone in the group who did not have a wheel in front or some knitting in our hands. Jacey Boggs is an excellent teacher, (I am not sure I am a good student) and we all went away having learnt something and met some new friends.
Back to reality, I am continuing my alpaca commission spinning. I also have a machine knitted piece for a lady for her to use for her printing, if it is suitable. Farm stuff continues with calf watching, and feeding the sheep.

I am going to a new market on Saturday, Riverside Plaza Market in Sheepparton, under cover for a change.

MEMAC (North East Yarns) are having our AGM on Sunday at King River Cafe in Oxley. Nice cafe/restaurant always seems busy when we go there.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

This weekend... for me.
I am heading to Belgrave for a spinning workshop with the Insubordiknit Jacey Boggs. Mandie of EGMTK is the organiser. Should be a great weekend with much spinning and laughter.
Tonight I have a project to take to patchwork and am completing it today. We have been working on Round Robins, so can't put up any photos.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Catching up....

Time flies, and you suddenly realise that you are writing in Facebook pages quickly so as not to use up computer time or "waste time on computer" when you should be working at your craft.

Nagambie market was a washout last Saturday, but weather permitting Girgarre Market will be on this sunday, and new items have been added to the stall.

Farm news... we now have a total of 18 calves. Lowline calves unfortunately have a knack of getting into other paddocks, just walk straight through the fences!!! So Leigh has been putting up ringlock fencing to keep them in; this will be an ongoing project. As the farm was originally set up as a dairy farm, there was no need for high tensile fencing. I must get an updated photo of the Lowline family.

Website is updated, and more yarn is drying. And here are photos of some new items for he stall.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Craft & Quilt Fair

Off to the quilt show tomorrow for the day. Travelling by bus/train from Kyabram. Always look forward to more crafty sessions.
This weekend I have none of the regular markets so am taking the weekend to do more work at home, including getting on with some Alpaca for a customer.
I am on the computer now also working on some borders for round robin quilts. EQ6 is very helpful.
Better then go into town for some shopping and some material for these projects.
So, currently picking more Alpaca fleece, carding some very light grey, almost silver Corriedale fleece, 2 earflap beanies are off the machine, and another beanie waiting to finish. Handspun wool yarn drying on the clothes horse. Some thick & thin handspun yesterday waiting for the dyepot.
Sunday will incorporate a visit to Rushworth for a Chat & Choose your Craft day. Then sometime I must run into Tongala to catch up with Mandie at Ewe Give Me The Knits.
Two more calves born last night so will have to check on them last thing today as we won't be home till 9.30pm tomorrow.
I am looking forward to reorganzing my days better after this.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Catching up...

...with website updates. I also have a new machine knit poncho up as well.
Busy weekend coming up ... with our Patchwork group in Rochester. We are having a Quilt Marathon over 12 hours...UFO's, with lots of goodies to eat and drink. One way of catching with projects that keep handing about.
Also, one of my sisters' has organised afternoon tea for our mother's birthday, so will dash to Echuca after lunch and then return.

Homeward bound and I need to pack the car for the Emerald Bank Market in Shepparton on Sunday. Is there any other better life!!!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Bendigo Wool Show is packed. Have I enough stock???? I am sharing a stall with the North East Yarns. Hope to see you there. Off soon. Lunch, shower, and drive......

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Working at Crafting... the focus of these days before Bendigo Sheep and Wool Show.
I have spun and dyed some more thick and thin wool skeins. Will I have enough???
I also have been dyeing some wool tops to create extra interest.
In progress... knitted jacket on the bulky machine, hand dyed natural 8ply wool yarn; fine machine knitted boucle scarf/shawl which I felting with the machine embellisher; 50 gm packs of natural wool batts for onselling; and have started spinning an alpaca fleece for a customer.
I won't have a lot of time to do photos for adding to the website as most of the stock I hope will sell at Bendigo.
Please introduce yourself while I am there. I would love to meet anyone who reads my blog.
Tomorrow is also the regular market at Girgarre.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Bendigo Sheep & Wool Show.. nearly upon us, where all those addicted to woolly things can get there fibre fix. Lots of stalls with such a variety of fibre and garments to choose. The beauty is that we are all different in our way od doing things. I have coloured sheep so am trying to do natural yarns, as well as knit beanies from my wool stash. I have been relearning the knitting machines, do a little felting, and use a Knitter's loom for scarves. I think I need 36 hour days!!!
This I am especially looking forward to it, as I am sharing a stall (with all my goodies) in my own right, and as a member of the North East Yarns.
A bit of a challenge to get a lot of work done for the 3 days, as I do a market each week. I will still keep plodding away and hopefully have lots of new stuff for the show.
So will have to post a few piccies soon.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Just an update...

I have just updated the website with some items.
Plus the Mooroopna Farmer's Market is on tomorrow.
I have been tidying the knitting machines and hope to do more work on them soon, other than small scarves. I have to run off an earflap hat for show and tell at the local Knitting machine club this week.
Have completed a couple of handknit shawls this last couple of weeks.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Time is not long enough.... do all the things we want to do. Seems to take forever even to knit a shawl but I finished it for the market at Nagambie. The poncho is past the halfway point, taking me longer than a jumper.
I am going to look forward to using the knitting machine on some handspun in the near future, as well as some of our North East Yarns.
Off to Melbourne airport today to stay overnight to see Rebecca off early tomorrow for her 3 year working stint overseas, (I think it will probably be more as she likes travelling). My other 2 girls and 2 granddaughters are coming as well, so we should have a nice catchup session as a family.
Next weekend I will be spinning at the Echuca Steam Rally on the Saturday, and then doing the Girgarre Market on Sunday.
In the meantime I have some thick and thin in the dyepot.
I had a great time at the Knitting Machine Seminar last weekend, coming home with a Machine Embellisher from Kate's Sewing Centre, (had looked at this previously at Bendigo show) and a bulky knit machine. (Can't take me anywhere without buying something new).

Friday, May 27, 2011

Here it is...

...the piece of machine knitting I have taken off the machine. Will decide what to do after the weekend, whether to pull it and redo or continue on.
Some felt scarves, and some yarn I recently spun from a blend of natural and hand dyed fleece.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

This weekend....

... I am away at a Knitting Machine seminar from Friday through Sunday, so am looking forward to some inspiration in that field.
Kylie Gussett is a speaker after the Friday night dinner, so looking forward to meeting her.
I have been working on a piece that I have patterned by using the hand tools, and it is nearly ready to slip off the needles, which I will take with me to the seminar. Not sure whether it is the right size for the vest I envisage but I'll soon find out. Will post a picture when off the needles for a better look. It is simply a rectangular shape.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Hand knitting happening..

...with a rectangular poncho almost half way completed. I am using our North East Yarns Warby Tweed, and knitting in stocking stitch with Moss stitch borders and as a pattern down the centre of front and back. The photo unfortunately doesn't due the yarn any justice. 

          And a triangular shawl using stocking stitch with an eyelt pattern . The yarn has been handspun from a pinky orange fibre top originally from EGMTK
I have been working on the knitting machine yesterday and today and am halfway up the front of a front of a vest or jumper (I will decide later). It will take sometime to do as I am handtooling the eyelet pattern that I have decided to do. It is a lovely green colour, just a little lighter than khaki.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Cold weather...

Natural coloured wool thick beanie
is now upon us so I hope there are lots of knitters out there wanting some lovely handspun wool to knit something scrumptious and warm, or handmade beanies to keep our heads warm.

Purple Sky Thick and thin
Mooroopna Farmers Market is this Sunday. Look for me there.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Happy Mother's Day to all Mothers this weekend...

...and it looks like the rain is going to hold off until Sunday afternoon.
Since I have two Markets on this weekend I am eternally grateful.
Saturday is Nagambie's Market, with Girgarre Market being on Mother's Day.
The car is packed bar the spinning wheel, wool to spin and other essentials.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

First days of retirement...

...was spending the weekend on my own, so started washing a fleece, as well as carding other fleeces. Winding off some 8ply white for dyeing for a customer, winding off 100gm lots of white tops ready for spinning thick and thin and then dyeing.
Trying to tidy bits of papers and magazines, that seem to accumulate. I generally flip through first and then get back to reading them later. Needless to say the pile grows.
Here are photos of some natural coloured batts and some thick and thin hand dyed yarn.
Today was a big day. Back to work to share morning tea with staff and residents, and speeches and a gift of flowers and a voucher, almost made me cry. Always sad to change one's life before going on with another.
Then a phone call out of the blue. The Cobram Spinners group were in town before going to Mandie's (EGMTK) shop in Tongala, could they stop by (we are talking a busload). They would call when leaving Tongala. They turned and viewed my little studio, and shopped. Not bad for not being prepared. Next time if advance notice, I will have a big display of fleeces out as well.
Such a fun day!!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Easter Markets...

Easter is coming TOO quickly and I have to do lots of work. More beanies, more fingerless mitts, scarves, handspun yarns.

I am currently working on as much as I can because there is a big Market at the Rushworth Festival this Saturday with a big crowd usually visiting this historic town. On Sunday the Tongala market is also happening.

I always look forward to all the visitors.

The lambs are still coming, now at 12 beautiful black lambs.

On the work front, I am Retiring from Nursing after 36 years. I will be looking forward to spending more time in the garden to get up to scratch, and keeping a better eye on the animals, and best of all start all the crafty wool things that I have been planning.

Bendigo Wool Show.... I am especially looking forward to this, as I will be sharing a stall (in my own right) with the North East Yarns. It is especially satisfactory because I am a member of this group of very talented people from the Nort East, where we bale our wool together to be processed into our yarn and jumpers. Amongst this group there are very talented, weavers, felters and knitters.

The North East Yarns products can be found through their website and at the Old Schoolhouse Gallery in Beechworth. Follow the link from the website.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

This weekend.... going to be very busy. Wangaratta Wool Day on Saturday.
Mooroopna Farmer's Market on Sunday.

As well, I am setting up a display at the B2Bexpo being held in Kyabram this weekend.

I have been working on some more thick and thin yarn for the weekend, and hand dyeing some white yarn as well. Previous yarn knitted up as a scarf using approx. 100 gms.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Wangaratta Wool Day.... I am a member of North East yarns I thought it was time to post our Annual Event which is in 2 weeks time. A great day is usually had by all. So all those who want a "woolly" fix come along.

Wangaratta Wool Day features “Maharajah’s Garden” textile exhibition

The 5th annual Wool Day in Wangaratta will be held on Saturday 16th April 2011 from 10am – 3pm.

This day is co-hosted by textile fanatics who are members of Wangaratta Handweavers and Spinners and North East Yarns.

The Wool Day is intended to promote spinning and weaving and textile crafts. We would love to see Guild members from near and far join us for this relaxed day meeting friends and sharing ideas and skills.

The focus of the day this year will be an exhibition of the embellished textiles in the Jasmine collection of “The Maharajah’s Garden”. These 25 brilliant and richly coloured artworks include dyeing, embroidery, machine work, felting and weaving. The works are accompanied by “techniques boards” which explain how to achieve a similar richness in your own textiles creations.

Again this year there will be people demonstrating a variety of woolcraft techniques.

You are invited to bring your spinning wheel, knitting, crochet or other project and spend time sharing your knowledge and skills with others and perhaps picking up some new ideas yourself.

The day is also planned as a chance for spinners, weavers and felters to purchase raw materials and equipment for their crafts as they prepare for winter projects.

First Edition Fibres of Euroa, Mandie Chandler of “Ewe Give Me the Knits” and other traders will be present.

The Wool Day will be held at the CWA Hall in Templeton St Wangaratta (between Ovens and Baker Streets and one block from the shopping centre). Morning and afternoon tea and light lunch will be available for purchase at the hall. Entry $2.

For further information contact Marion Stewart 57253259

Tuesday, April 5, 2011


This little one is the first lamb followed by number 2 below.
Absolutely a delight to see little lambs skipping along. I now have 4 and eagerly await the rest.
As you can see they are black against their lighter coloured mothers, but I am a member of the Black and Coloured Sheep Assoc, although I don't do the meetings.

Jewel fulled thick and thin

 Jewel is on consignment at Rushwool Knit & Yarn

Bulky Yarn plyed

Bulky yarn is new on the stall.

Friday, April 1, 2011


....My daughter Rebecca's birthday today. As she is in Melbourne working she was having lunch and tea out today. Also she has major preparations ahead of her for a job transfer to Papua New Guinea in a couple of months, so will certainly miss her.

Tomorrow is Nagambie market, followed on Sunday with a demonstration Spinning Day( where I will have all my goodies including my new yarns) at Merrigum Historical Day.

Monday spinning at Rushwool Knit and Yarn where I will be taking a small supply of my thick and thin fulled yarn.

Tuesday half day in the studio and half at work.

Yesterday I had a fabulous day at Stitch This in Kyabram where I attended a workshop with Maria Martin learning to use her Pattern Drafter. I actually was able to make the blocks for a dress that would fit me. I have a terrible sizing when it comes to clothes, and I find it difficult to get affordable clothes off the shelf. I am looking forward to sewing my own clothes again.

On the sheep front after a two year break, I will have lambs again. The first arrived yesterday afternoon, with another this morning. The sight of black lambs is to be beholden. Hope the sheep behave while at the market tomorrow as it is an early start for travel. Look forward to the end of daylight saving so it is light when I get up.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

More yarn....

....colourful thick and thin lightly fulled yarn.

Crafting, sharing, spinning day...

Recently I put out an invitation for visitors to come and craft, spin etc. at the farm studio. So thanks to Wendy, Shirley, Dawn and Margaret, we had a lovely day sitting in the shade of the apple trees spinning and knitting, and talking about our ideas and plans for our craft. Wendy wants some of my handspun hand dyed fulled yarn that I have been working on, so have to get some more done for her shop in Rushworth. After spinning, dyeing comes in a close second, because you can plan your colours, but you don't necessarily know what the final result can be. Too busy chatting, so unfortunately no photos of the day. But photos soon of some more of the new yarns.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

New Yarns...

... for Mooroopna Market tomorrow. These are handspun fulled hand dyed singles in a thick and thin variation. Looking forward to comments from customers. More yarns to come before next market at Tongala.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Mooroopna Farmers Market...

...was recently set up late last year, and after enquiries I am going to be there, this Sunday, March 20th.
I am working on a few projects at the moment.

I am currently spinning some hand dyed blended wool yarn for Rushwool Knit & Yarn,

spinning some Tan Alpaca fleece for sales, some grey Alpaca for a client.

A yellow hand knit scarf and a machine knit carf have also been completed.

A Garter and dropstitch shawl from hand dyed thick and thin yarn also finished. My oldest daughter is the model, and shows it off quite well. I manged to get her to model our new North East Yarns jumper, which looks really great on her.

And some hand dyeing of natural white wool yarn.