Well I couldn’t find my shots from Christmas/Billy Idol Day… so this week will be all about Melbourne’s different seasons.
Most of you guys are overseas and I get a lot of questions about the seasons here. Probably because I talk about them like they are exciting… which they are to me because I grew up in North Queensland which only has 2 seasons: hot and slightly less hot. Growing up there, seasons were something you saw on American tv and I don’t think I really saw trees dropping their leaves until a few years ago!
Melbourne has 4 really distinct seasons.
Winter – June, July and August.
Winter is quite cold, I don’t think it’s gotten to below 0C while I’ve been here but the highs are usually between 8-12C but the wind chill is lower.
Winter always has a kind of blue tinge to the light for some reason. All of the trees in the CBD are deciduous so there are sprawling branches to go with the old architecture. I think Melbourne’s building’s look the most beautiful in Winter.
It’s the kind of weather which makes you want to eat cake under a blanket and knit.
Autumn- March, April and May.
We’re supposed to be hitting Autumn at the end of the month and it’s definitely starting to cool down more! It’s a beautiful season here because the city is so full of trees that everywhere you turn it’s orange. The light is still tinged with an orange glow from Summer but the wind is the chilly like Winter and will whip in your face.
Of course, it happens very quickly so it’s not long before it looks like this:
Big coats are usually still mandatory which reminds me that I need to get mine dry cleaned so I can bring it out again!
I think Autumn seems like the windiest month, but that might just be because you can see the leaves being whipped around.
I think Autumn and Spring are my favourite seasons because they are the ones I really missed out on growing up it’s still a novelty for me to watch the leaves come and go.
And then we’re back around to Summer. I just realised that I’m going through these backwards… well the photos were already in that order and I’ve come this far…
Summer -December, January and February.
Clearly Summer makes me lazy. Heat really does make me pretty lazy. Even though I grew up in much warmer temperatures than this, I don’t function well in anything over 35C. I cannot wait until we can move somewhere that has air-conditioning.
Summer here is hot but it’s a really dry heat so it doesn’t feel as bad as it is. The worst part is the hot wind though, it makes going outside feel like you’re walking into a city sized hair dryer.
The upside of Summer is that Melbourne is FULL of beautiful flowers and plans. There are events practically every day of the year to explore and because people actually enjoy Summer (unlike me) everyone is in a good mood.
The sun doesn’t go down until like 9:30 at night which is very strange for me as in QLD it pretty much went down at the same time every day regardless of the time of year. Melbourne also takes part in daylight savings which obviously factors into that but no matter how long we live here I just can’t get used to eating dinner while the sun is still up.
Summer means an orange glow in the sun and sunset lasts forever. This year it’s been really mild so there have only been a few hot weeks. The year before, the temperatures were up to 45C for almost a week *_* All of my plants died and Lottie, James and I survived by eating frozen vegetables and Slurpees all week. Frozen minted peas = best Summer snack.
Even though it’s been mild, I’m still ready for it to be over!
Then lastly we come to Spring which is one of my favourites.
Spring – September, October and November.
Spring here is full of daisies and dandelions which I absolutely adore.
Spring means flowers everywhere even in the city. I get really excited and want to start doing lots and lots of new crafts. I think Spring is my most productive month because I want to get out and take photos and I actually have the energy to stay up late and follow projects through.
Out in the suburbs there are areas which are full of cherry blossoms too!
Of course, Melbourne is known for having all 4 of those seasons within the space of an hour so I don’t know how accurate any of my descriptions really are!
It’s pretty much impossible to dress comfortably here without layering a bunch of stuff to slowly put on or strip off.
This post got a little weird! But I hope that gives a decent picture of what it’s like living here ^_^
After the amigurumi project I posted about earlier in the week, I was on the hunt to find a way to make using a thin crochet hook more comfortable for long periods of time. You can buy fancy special hooks which have thicker grips etc but I didn’t want to just throw out all the hooks I already had…
The edges on the grip part on the hook that came with the kit were razor sharp!
To begin with I wrapped it in some fabric tape which solved the sharp edges but not really the fact that it can be painful to hold over long periods of time because of the width.
Needle felting to the rescue! I wrapped the hook in some white roving starting around 4cm from the hook and needle felted it together to form a kind of sheath. It was a little tough to get the felting process started without stabbing myself so I wet the who thing and rolled it around between the palms of my hands then continued to poke at it with the felting needle.
What I ended up with was this, which was great but because of my colour choice… it looked quite a lot like a tampon hahaha!
The addition of a pink spiral of roving and some more needle felting helped with that problem!
Now it’s thick enough to grip easily and squishy so that I can work for hours without any pain. I love solving silly problems like this!
It’s a shame you couldn’t do the same thing with knitting needles really! Anyway, hope you found that useful, let me know if you have any other clever crafting tips!
Morning! Another week, another busy day. I’m dreading the rest of February and March at the moment because it’s going to be so busy :( I have an Easter mini break to look forward to though so that’s something!
Almost all of the crafts I’ve been doing lately have been yarn related. I’m falling further and further into the world of yarn and every time I try one thing I want to try another harder step.
Kim gave me this little kit from Japan after she decided to take a crochet break. I say break because I’m convinced one day I’ll get her back into it… XD
I have done general amigurumi before but I thought this would be a good easy project to learn how to read Japanese charts and patterns.
When I started looking at the charts I realised that while it wasn’t as hard as I thought it would be, it did require a quick internet search to make sure I was translating the terms correctly.
Bergamot decided not to bother waiting for me and just power through.
Thankfully there were also photos! Because you know, Bergamot can’t read Japanese. >_>
I loved the end result of the kit and the instructions taught me a lot of techniques which will be super useful for other projects but the combination of using a 3mm metal hook which hadn’t been finished well and rubbed against my skin with it’s pointy metal side every stitch and the SCRATCHIEST YARN KNOWN TO MAN made me extremely glad it was over quickly.
The hook made me think about how I could fix it though and I got a bit creative trying to make it more ergonomic. I’ll show you what I did next post!
Of course this style of amigurumi means lots of ends to weave in :/
I only needed half the yarn so I will keep the left overs for details on other projects. I’m thinking it would be nice for noses on bears.
Plus side, it looks so cute when it’s all finished!
I want to order a heap of these eyes and noses so I can make my own things!
I think I had more fun taking photos of the dog than I did making it.
And Bergamot approved of her new friend!
So all in all? Would definitely recommend this kit if you’re trying to learn to make amigurumi. The photos are quite easy to follow and if you have basic crochet skills and do some Googling you don’t really need to read Japanese to understand what’s going on.
I had to get up at 4:30am this morning for a conference skype so I don’t think I’m quite running on all cylinders today… Ahaha Halloween photos… next week we’ll have Christmas!
I think you can guess who I was for last Halloween… I had 2 costumes, this version was my half arsed one which I pulled out of my closet:
Jacket: Angelic Pretty Skirt: Supre Scarf: Tie shop
And the Celina let me borrow her proper awesome proper uniform! She made it herself, SO COOL!
As per usual, I was in charge of decorations and James was in charge of food. Halloween really isn’t an Australian holiday so we had to make do with hand made stuff.
So mostly orange candles and some autumn leaves I found one year!
In terms of my make up I used soft pink colours with a lot of white in the inner corner of my eyes. I also elongated my usual flicked eyeliner and brought a little bit down in the corner of the lower lash line for a more cartoonish look.
My hair was the traditional buns of course! You guys keep asking for a tutorial on this style and I do really want to do it… but I want to do it well so I’m waiting until I have enough time to sit down and do it RIGHT.
In the mean time here’s a basic description of the steps:
1. Shout Moon Prism Power! When that doesn’t work, follow these other steps.
2. Put hair into high ponytails.
3. Separate a small section of hair at the top.
4. Tease and hairspray the section until it’s huge.
5. Shape it into a ball and pin it all around the top of the ponytail so there is no band showing.
6. Once it’s pinned, continue to shape with your hands. Once it’s round, hairspray it.
7. Divide your fringe in half and use a straightener or big styler to curl each half under.
8. Tease and hairspray the curled sections so they stick outwards with a lot of bounce and give that nice rounded heart shape.
We cleared off James’ desk for all of the food and tried to decorate it too. He really pulled out all of the stops!
Spider devilled eggs.
Shrunken head bread rolls and candy corn fudge.
Evil red velvet cupcakes with graveyard frosting…. I don’t know >_>
Mummy sausages, one of whom seems to be wearing hammer pants for some reason.
Bat wing cheese balls.
Celina’s spooky drinks.
My favourite was the little oranges with jack o lantern faces on them… I might be biased because I painted them :D
Rice krispy brains.
Cooked bats. These were actually delicious honey soy chicken wings but they were so weird to eat because they looked so burnt! It was just black food colouring.
James was my Tuxedo Mask for the evening. We hadn’t counted on how hard it would be to find him a costume at the thrift store! Apparently Tuxedo Mask’s 80’s clothes aren’t so much in fashion any more. Who knew!
Look at that sweet rose throwing action. I feel so much safer with that around. And that high quality mask!
For the rest of the night we watched Zombieland and ate a lot of food. That is my favorite kind of party… the kind with minimal people and a lot of food and chairs to sit in. I am such a party animal.
Later that night I dissected one of the orange jack o lanterns but it felt kind of wrong eating it while it’s brothers were looking at me >_>
I feel like I’ve left this so long that I now need to start planning the next one…. This time we will plan costumes out in advance… maybe. >_> Happy Feb-ween?
Today has been a little bit of a different day for me. Normally at this time of day I would be sitting at home wading through emails and trying to get some work done. Instead I had to help James bring some photography gear out to a job so I have a few hours to kill waiting for him before we take it back home again.
I had a bit of wander around Carlton park and found a nice shady bench to sit on. It’s a really lovely park and has some beautiful buildings as well.
I wish we lived closer because it’s really refreshing to just sit here in the cool breeze and people watch.
My camera connects directly to my iPad (which I’m writing this on) so here are some of the photos I’ve taken so far ^_^
This is like a live version of snapshots haha! I even managed to balance the camera on some sticks for a where I walk shot! I’m trying to break in my new shoes today but the backs still rub quite badly so I had to add some socks. I’m thinking of trying out knitting some lace socks like this for my first sock project.
There is a group of little old ladies monopolising the basketball court as they work out. They totally look like they are having some kind of gang meeting in their work out clothes.
It was supposed to be very hot today but there is a lovely breeze coming through…that said a weird yellow bug just crawled onto my bag.
There are heaps of people here with their dogs too. I think Lottie would love rolling around in the grass! We’ve considering trying to buy an apartment again when our lease is up so maybe we should look in this area. Kris gave me some directions to lovely cafes but I wanted to take some photos in the park first.
Let’s see, what else is happening today? I’m a little desperate to go home because I will hopefully have a package of new watercolour paints waiting. I say hopefully because I’ve been waiting for 2 weeks now for the package to get from Byron Bay to Melbourne but that’s a story to put in the review I’m going to write when/if it arrives >_>
My comfy bench…
I’m really excited for these paints because it’s a lot more colours than I’m used to and they are actually set into fabric so you can fit a full colour pallet onto a page of paper for portability *_* it would have been really nice to be able to sit in the park and paint today but I’m a few hours early I guess. Timing has really not been my friend this week!
The grass here is all covered in dew drops, it’s so pretty.
There are an awful lot of people making out in this park XD
I’ve been keeping busy at nights by knitting a new shirt. It’s using stretchy yarn that has some elastic woven in so it should give a good fit when it’s done. The endless rows of stockinette have been really relaxing while watching tv at night and it’s the perfect project for watching subtitled TV.
We bought a subscription to Crunchy Roll and I’ve been totally obsessed with the show Servant X Service. It’s so freaking funny and I hope they make another season! We are having issues getting the streaming to work with Chromecast though so I think we will cancel next month and see what else is available. I really wish Funimation was available in Aus because they have all of the 90’s shows I used to watch! Stupid licensing laws. We might have to get a VPN at this rate.
Ok, James and Kris have finished up at the job so time for me to pack up and head home to check my mail box :D
I hope you guys enjoyed the live snapshots haha! It was really fun to write so maybe we can make it a proper thing again ^_^