Friday, July 27, 2007

Another Knit In happened today in the gallery. Great to see all you knitters and crochterer's coming in for a chat and the steady progression of knitted garments.

quiltingmick's capalet is becoming a set with this hat she has in the show:
It was a bit wild and woolly outside today at lunchtime (you can say that on a knitting blog) so the inside activities were great. Unfortunately I forgot my knitting, but am definitely planning on bringing it next week. I am really enjoying my short circuit scarf and Diana assures me she has even been going to bed early just so she can keep knitting in peace away from her frisky new puppy, Toby. Amazing how the animals love the whole knitting thing, my cat is sort of bewitched by it and can't resist tackling the needles and lunging for the wool, which so far has escaped her evi intentioned claw clutches.
I had a great chat at the Knit In today, interestingly about knitters who don't blog, and why, and the whole blogging phenomena.
Lee showed us her latest project which is a commission for baby booties. She has hand dyed the wool into bright and strong colour and made these fantastic boots - as wesaid at the Knit In, I want some!

Don't forget next Friday for any who want to come along - tea and biscuits provided.

Gargoyle comfort

Trudy - what a whizz of a bunny you are to be sneaking in shots of Al the Gargoyle. It was my mistake that I thought the scarf had gone, when I left yesterday I realised it was still there, I just didin't remember it being there when I went out for lunch. How does Trudy do it, and I wonder if she has access to black and white scarves as well. And what is Lulu up to:

Lulu, in a wily lamb sortofaway, convinced me to let her try on the necklace that resides next to her, she says that I have been absolutely torturing her by being placed next to the lovely necklace whilst doing her community service. Well the trickery started there

and took off to here hiding behind the squashed car cosy:

then she tried to hide in the Arwens Leg Warmer:

then she was the master of disguise:

spotted the plonk;

last ditch attempt of being undercover:

and somewhat contrite back in her warm little cubicle - where the necklace has been safely put back as well!

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Your wish is my command...

Love and carrots


I walked in this morning to see our resident Gargoyle wearing a striped black and white scarf - football fan I wondered, homage to winter - keep this bronze fella warm, or one of our oh so talented knitters doing a bit of much needed foyer decoration?

All possible. For those of you who don't know we have a gargoyle in our foyer, a figure that deters the faint of heart and welcomes those who appreciate a good belly laugh. A memorial to the late politician Al Grassby, a bronze character who it is said is the father of multiculturalism in Australia . It is here because this building now houses the new ACT Multicultural Centre located on the top floor. There was a movement to have Al placed in the foyer of the Multicultural Centre itself on the top floor so that his presence here may be absolutely clear, but instead it is the lonely but happy guy who welcomes all to our shared facility. Of course I wouldn't expect our visitors to know Al's true role, but rather I hope that they appreciate his Gargoyleness and take him on board in the role of protector and comic relief.

I'm sorry to say the camera is off campus today so I can't even shoe the rugged up Al the Gargoyle for you, but since this morning this fine piece of knitted clothing has been whisked off Al to I don't know where, so you will just have to take my word for it. this leads me to the real point which is that A) I fialed to get a good pic, and B) I know that there has been some attention paid to Al the Gargoyle since the Knit1 Blog1 exhibition has been up and there have been some stunning portraits taken of him. This is a call to all those portrait photographers askng them to allow me to put them up on this blog, I'd love to have a record of these small offerings to Al the Gargoyle.

On a not so light note, one of our projectors that was in the gallery projecting the blogs was stolen. We are not happy Jan(ers) aroudn here especially me. This sort of thing puts one into a fug for the rest of the week and now we will be undertaking more security measures. Its such a shame as this has never happened to us before but there is always a first time....

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Multiple uses

Another day and night in Knit1 Blog1. Tonight we did a small launch of our new website and introduction to our Accredited Professional Members to use the site as a sort of proxy site by having a comprehensive portfolio page. We are really happy with our new website and its much better design and beautifully laid out information, making it really easy to use - a big thanks to Mark from Genius Moon who did all the work (with some input from us of course), and to Diana for her management.

It just so happened that this was a very smooth launch as we easily slipped into the gallery and reconfigured it oh so slightly to become the venue for the launch. Turned out to be a great introduction and then a great chance to get up close and personal with the knitting on display. Everyone enjoyed the walk through of the site and I hope to see more portfolios emerging on the site over time.

A lot of our audiences have been really enjoying the show and in particular feeling the works on display. Usually, for many reasons, we don't encourage people to handle the works in the gallery but this is one exhibition where people are drawn to the work and of course many of the participants encourage this as well. Its like its gold, the pieces have come out of the virtual and are real and in the here and now and they can't resist - you can feel the different wools and inspect the different stitches, pat down the oh so smooth knitting done by these expert knitters.
I'm giving a talk at the ANU School of Art - Art Forum next Thursday and so have to get my head down to write about what has been a really enjoyable project. Need to get a bit of a plan in my head and talk about this wide world of knitting and blogging.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Events at Knit1 Blog1

Hi All,

We had a fabulous weekend here at Craft ACT for knitters both novices and the more advanced.

It started on Friday with our first Knit In from 12 - 1:30pm. Thanks to the group who turned up, small but into that knitting as you can see, and it included our special guest quiltingmick with her extraordinary crocheting skills!

On Saturday Jacqueline Kempton hosted her workshop Lost in Translation. Jacqueline came with her own personal library resource of wonderful knitting books, it was quite a stack and would no doubt have provided heaps of information for all the attendees. We had a full house at this workshop and Jacqueline wrote that she had a great time.

Sunday was host to three events, the Short Circuit Scarf workshop by Denise Sutherland, the Toes and Heels of Socks by Penny Hadobas and some spinning demonstrations from members of the ACT Spinners and Weavers association.

Both workshops were really well attended. There were a number of Craft ACT participants including myself, Diana, and board members Alison and Sharon. For complete novices such as Diana and me, the concept of knitting shorter and shorter rows without dropping a single stitch was a quantum leap from our very patchy straight row knitting. Its amazing when you are learning new things, the tension that builds up inside as you desperately try not to make a mistake and lose the whole thing. At one point I took my eyes of my knitting and the knitting completely fell off my needle to my complete horror and tongue curling concentration. A big thank you to Denise for her excellent teaching skills, Diana and I kept going after the workshop and by last night, I had completed almost 2 rings of knitting - I couldn't believe it.

Diana and I went all out in purchasing wool and shopped at Craft ACT buying some Happyspider6 Wool for the workshop.
Unfortunately we did not have the fancy ball spinner - sorry Bells, I can't remember what its called any more, and so both of us persevered by hand thanks to the patient support from Bells and Sharon.

Penny appeared for her class and she brought her own wool for the socks which she then turned from skeins to balls in an instant on this fabulous contraption. Everyone looked like they had a great time so thanks for coming. We even had a few people blogging by the end of it.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Knit 1 Blog 1 opening: a special report by Trudy Bunny

Hello lovely people!

Barbara is away sick so has asked me to stand in for her and do a round up of what people said about the Knit 1 Blog 1 opening (which, I must say, was pretty fab apart from the utter lack of carrots to eat!)

My flatmate, The Shopping Sherpa was speechless.
Taphophile had fun with the Al Grassby statue in the foyer. Oh - which reminds me - the official word on the street is "more knitting for the gargoyle pls"

Jejune (and Dotter) had lovely earrings for the occasion:Ampersand Duck enjoyed herself

And Artificially Mythic was cool

If you covered the opening (or the exhibition) in your blog and I missed it, please let me know!

Love and carrots

Hi All,
I have been in the gallery today, doing a blog crawl and catching up on some news. Sorry to hear that Beatlewear has tooth problem by the way, I hope that you can get some treatment on it soon.
There have been some wonderful postings about the opening and great comments back to the posts as well. Really happy to read that Knitting on the Avenue will be coming down to see the show as well.
I thought you might like some more pics....
Jacqui Kempton
And here is some of the fantstic merchandise:

missy fee knitting rolls
Knitwit range from Liana - quite a few bangle walked out on opening night!
Cards from Jejune and wristlettes from Shopping Sherpa
Skeins by Beatlewear
Don't forget the Knit Ins are on every
Friday during the exhibition from 12 noon to 1.30pm,
with coffee, tea and biscuits to warm you up!

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Hi All,
We had a great opening of Knit1 Blog1 last Friday night.

All the local participants were out in force for the event and many supporters and friends. People were oohing and aahing over the fantaastic spread of knitting supplied by the participants and there was even some live blogging (see bleow) which was great.
My warmest thanks go to the knitting bloggers and our four guests: jejune; knitting on the avenue; asia adventure; saffron knits; missy fee; the shopping sherpa; bells knits; othlon's demon knits; dreaming all the time; beatlewear; and unravelled; and guests: jacqui kempton, bronwen sandland; quilting mick and ampersand duck.
Without your enthusiasm for this project we would not hae the great show we do now. Showing the work of all these knitters has been a real enticement for all of us. The range of work and the skill is amazing and exceptional. I'm really impressed by the inventiveness, the fun, and the work that is put into the knitting. In fact with the strong networks, the discussion, the exuberance over new pieces being finished, new patterns tested and frustrations aired, I would have to say that this community is somewhat akin to a sporting community. there is great general knowledge ofeach other, admiration for personal skills, the need for training and advice, shared moements of pushing through hurdles and then a more personal support network.
On the Saturday immediately after the opening, I was on local ABC Radio for a quick interview by the lovely Genevieve Jacobs. She was asking about the whole Festival of Contemporary Art and what we were aiming to do with this festival, the theme of which is IN PUBLIC.
It was a good question to ask as we are trying to raise awareness of contemporary art and its many facets. to try and get this message across it is easier to work with other organisations and pool our resources and skills. The organisations co hosting are the Canberra Contemporary Art Space, the Australian National University School of Art Gallery and us, the Craft ACT: Craft and Design Centre. Each of the events and exhibitions in some way deals with the topic IN PUBLIC, what is wonderful about the festival is that there are many takes on this.

What I love about the Knit1 Blog1 exhibition is that it draws upon this fantastic sub culture of people who connect and communicate about a passion they share. As I mentioned in my opening night remarks, the craft of knitting is a survivor of the most tenacious quality, and that for centureis knitting has been a consistent staple of most wardrobes. When knitting became uncool in the 1980's it certainly did not disapear or stop altogether, rather it went underground and has now re-emerged as one of the great pillars of the blogging universe. It has literally stitched itself back into popularity, as it was timing was spot on as it coinceded with arguably one of the most accessible communication trends ever, blogs. Now knitting is beyond just the private, domestic, and family domain and more in public than ever before.

It was also the opening of Bev Hogg's wonderful solo exhibition Weaving Dry Water. Bev unfortunately could not be with us as she was in Perth with her family and we really missed her. Bev's installation is a narrative that shows a very strong concern about the issues of water use, the effects on the land and the implications of human indifference, unconcern, ignorance, niavete and disruption. Bev tells us these things by introducing a number of large rabbit figures, rabbits easily recgonisable as a feral scourge eating all the plant stock, burrowing out the earth, causing havoc. This becomes a strong metaphor for human behaviour, of peolpe whether they live on the land or perhaps particularly those who live in cities and use water as if a never ending supply out of our pipes. One rabbit holds a funnel up to catch water from the sky with another funnel loosely held over the ground. Two more look out, up at the sky and across the plant forms in the 'dry' area of the installation, as if puzzled over what is happening. Flower blooms dot the floor, their centres articulated with drain grates, colanders etc, indicating the ever present need for water, that is used us and drained away. There is also two tree forms a beautiful succulent organe tree and a classic and hautingly beautiful dead white eucalypt gum. If yo're coming to see Knit 1 Blog1 take a long look at Weaving Dry Water as well.

In case any of you have been wondering how Lulu the Lamb has been going - well, this community service program is doing her wonders. she was a bit sheepish about having a notice put in her display with her - outlining all her naughtiness, but it was very necessary. To make her feel a bit better I put her new earrings on, supplied by the Sheep Rustler via Jejune. This mollified her quite a bit and she is even learning to cope being cooped up with jewellery that doesn't belong to her. For all of you who are missing her, here she is in all her glory.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Oops, that was Olivia at
I am here too, also with glass of wine in hand. I am blogging at the opening of an exhibition about knitting and blogging and I think it all might just about disappear into itself!
Greetings from the opening of Knit 1 Blog 1!

The Shopping Sherpa (with glass of wine in hand)
Hey bloggers,

Tonight we are live blogging at the opening of Knit1 Blog1. Come and join us.

Hey, Knitting is cool! See you all tonight @ 6.15pm

Hey knitting and blogging groovers - tonight is the night.

Just to refresh your memory or if you're not sure of the time here is a reminder:



Also opening WEAVING DRY WATER by artist BEV HOGG
Same time same channel !

If you want to do the full FoCA opening start at

5:30pm Australian National University School of Art Gallery
PROOF, Waratah Lahy, Pete Volich, Kate Murphy, Charlie Sofo, Lauren Simeoni
Ellery Crescent ACTON

6:15pm Craft ACT: Craft and Design Centre
KNIT1 BLOG 1, a number of knitters who blog and a few guests
Level 1, North Building, Civic Square, 180 London Cct, CANBERRA

7:00pm Canberra Contemporary Art Space
FILTERING REMNANTS, The Contextual Villians
Gorman House Arts Centre, Ainslie Ave, BRADDON

For a special treat hang around at Canberra Contemporary Art Space and see a wild, weird and wonderful perfomance @ 7:30PM
SPREAD, Cristy Gilbert and Anna Simic

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Thursday night before the opening and still doing the last things. We have put all the work up and it is all labelled. I am finalising all the stock for sale with some new additions arriving tomorrow. There will be quite the feast of product to go along with Knit1 Blog1.

Here is a sampler of some of Jejune's cards:

Yesterday I heard about 2nd Life - I know I am slow, something to do with my head down and getting on with the work in front of me, or maybe it is because I have never really been into computer games etc. 2nd Life - what a strange concept. Is it more strange than blogging, or is it just different, and what roles do they play in our lives? Having travelled to many knitting blog sites over the past 6 months and never feeling like I was seeing more than the tip of the iceberg, it seems that this communication method is dependant on the real world, what is happening in the world is reflected, commented in the blogs that I have been reading. The pictures are blinks of life in other peoples world, and a world that exists in real time and space. So why 2nd Life, what is the attraction, the aim, the desire? Are bloggers inclined to become a part of 2nd Life or are they satisfied with blogging. Will I be forever at my desk here at work writing on my screen or will this evolve into conversations with people face to face?

Blogging makes sense to me, it is a way to converse on a topic of my choice and people can view that or not and make comment and possibly connect. Should I feel despondent/offended if no-one comments on this blog, wonder at night if people are reading it, and worry about it taking up time? Its a fascinating stream of people who knit and blog and it doesn't seem relegated to the virtual at all, its possible to come together share, comment on the world and be encouraged to knit creations of every size, shape, colour and numerous function and non function, gainnig a skill and a sense of personal satisfaction. Is this the same in 2nd Life? If I can build the worlds sexiest condo and look like I have never looked in my life, is there a similar sense of self satisfaction I wonder? If one person can make a million can everyone? Would I go to a virtual flat nightclub, when I have the option of real world nightclub that has all the right ingredients to get every sense of the body activated? Probably not. Knit1 Blog1 the exhibition is a great example of the blog working for the real non virtual world. Hmm more to ponder on blogging, knitting, sharing and the weird world of 2nd Life.