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Friday, December 29, 2006

Totem, Totem, wherefore art thou Totem...?

It is official - next to nobody stocks Paton's Totem anymore.

I am still working on Dilby's xmas sweater, and RAN OUT OF BLUE YARN!

I needed, maybe, half a ball to finish... and at first, I couldn't find Totem anyware

Finally I went to Woolsy Trading Post in Shannon Avenue (listed as a stockist on the Patons website), which is what I imagine a yarn shop to be 20 odd years ago. The yarn is stuffed into pigeon holes along the wall (still in the plastic wrapper) there is a cross stich and embroidery section at the back, a department full of sheepskin products AND also at the shop, for some reason, they sell second hand office furniture.

They had a great wall of Totem - you could probably see it from the moon. The assistant grabbed out the shade card, and we discovered I was looking for colour #3096. I didn't care what dye-lot, because I planned to use a few cunning Zimmermann ideas to camoflague any irregularities if they existed.

This is where Patons started to annoy me. They have a shade of light blue which is colour #3069. There was millions of balls of that shade at the shop, but no luck with what I wanted. And - apparently Patons is making some changes to the Totem line, so I pretty much left with the idea that I had Buckley's of finding yarn.

However, today Mum went into Lincrapt to buy some supplies, and I went along for the ride. Surprise, surprise, this Crafting Department Store had not yet been overrun by their own-branded-acrylic-novelty-yarns-that-more-often-than-not-knit-up-into-something-that-can-only-be-compared-to-carpet-underlay. I found ONE (1) ball of Totem colourway #3096. YAY!

The funny bit of the story - Mum and I went into Dymocks after Lincrapt, and left the shopping bag on the counter when purchasing a book. Thankfully we returned to the store 10 minutes later - Irony was taking a day off. After my terrible search for the yarn, I expected it to disappear before I had gotten it home. But the nice Dymocks ladies looked after it until we returned to the store. I am now happily continuing Dilby's xmas sweater and should be finished before 2007 :)

And another shopping with Mum story...

Remember way back when, and I reviewed this cosy little LYS?

Well, after making a special trip out to Point Lonsdale yesterday to show off Wildpurl to my Mum, I discovered that, unfortunately, Wildpurl is an LYS no longer. Alas - it is now a homewares store / small fashion boutique with a yarn section shoved into the back corner :( The assistant behind the counter called it "expanding" (like it was a good thing), but I think it was just too difficult for them to stay afloat stocking only yarn and knitting notions. So whilst they still stock their up-market yarns, they now stock up-market decor for yuppies - sad but true. However, the trip was not a complete loss.
In a basket marked sale items, I found these two little gems:Both off them hardcover, and each $15-20 below the RRP.

Knitting with Beads covers both embellishing with beads as part of finishing a garment, and knitting with the beads prestrung on the yarn. The beading appeals to me, lots of projects do not, so in short, for me it is an inspirational text on technique.

Nursery Rhyme Knits was too cute to not come home with me. I think an Ipsy-wipsy Spider blanket may fall off my needles in the future. Or perhaps little Bo Peeps sheep? Either way, I am glad that Lucy-lou is doing the kids thing because I have an excuse to knit some of these.

Whilst Mum and I were down on the Peninsula we decided we may as well check out the Op Shops and Vinnies (thrift stores)

I grabbed a whole lot of vintage patterns (complete with models sporting questionable hairstyles - oh and questionable mottos, like the one I photographed for the top of this post), a biography of Edward VI (for when I finally get around to making something from Stanmore's Tudor Roses), The house that wool built, which I think is a study of architecture of the early australian sheep stations (It had wool in the title and was only $2 - I had to give it a go) and a wonderfully colourful hardcover knitting pattern book that I have 'carbon dated' to be from the 80s using very scientific techniques....

Now this is one of the sweaters included in this book. It uses 11 colours, care to guess the designer?

Well, if you cheated and looked in the bottom left hand corner you would have seen Kaffe Fassett's name. Yes, I like the colour work, but I don't think this is quite for me. I am rather dubious about the rolled up sleeves, and the Jetson's style joins at the arms and collar..... Posted by Picasa