Thursday, November 23, 2006

New design, new pic

Hubby just took this pic of the new design. I think it helps you visualize how it fits a lot better. Sorry about the shadow.
It was actually snowing during the shot. At least we think it was snow. It looked more like crystals. Not as hard as hail. Flaky pieces of cold rain. Magical.

New design: Queen Wen

Is it possible to knit a long sweater that does not hang like a potato sack?
In walks Queen Wen.
It is a long sweater. It ends where a mini skirt would. The slits ensure that movement is not inhibited.
The waist fits like a belt.
The low "V" neckline will show off that pretty new black camisole.
The I-cord adds a touch of whimsy.
The sleeves are cleverly and uniquely designed.
Am I a happy knitwear designer? Yup.
Can I wait to wear my new sweater? Nope.
...but I will.
How many sleeps 'til December 15th?

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Sit and Knit in Australia

I received this invitation yesterday. I wish I could attend. Someday.

Please join us for the annual
Threads & More Sit 'n' Knit Concert
6pm to 9pm
Wednesday November 29

Our annual Sit 'n' Knit concert is here again on Wednesday the 29th of November and we'd love you to join us!

Knitters, beaders, embroiderers, felters, beginners and experienced craft folk... all are welcome to come along and enjoy a night of fantastic live music, food, fun and fashion with us here at Threads & More.

Featuring live performances by the Mood Swing jazz band, delicious refreshments and the first ever Threads & More Summer fashion parade, it's a night you won't want to miss!

The concert runs from 6pm to 9pm on Wednesday the 29th of November. Tickets are only $29 per person which includes entry, entertainment and light refreshments.

To book your place at this fantastic evening call Threads & More on (07) 3367 0864, or book online now via the Threads & More website.
See you there!
threads & more
141 Boundary Road
Bardon, Brisbane.
QLD 4065
P: +61 07 33670864
F: +61 07 3367 0458

Store open:
Monday to Friday 9am to 5 pm
Saturday 9am to 4 pm

There I successfully bought myself one more day. I'm off to finish a sweater. : ) Hopefully you'll see it tomorrow.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

What am I working on?

The short answer is a lot of things.
The long answer...Well, the long answer will be revealed over a series of posts. I would love to share it all with you right now. However, one of the biggest lessons knitting teaches is to be patient.
Each year I am inspired by Hubby's office party. This year the gang is going to a play. One of my favourite forms of entertainment. Not only that we are going to see "A Christmas Carol". My favourite play. Each year in late November I begin to read this book. One of my traditions. So the fact that I am going to be able to watch the play is big. It called for an extra special project. So I put my designer cap on and came up with just the thing. I have finished the body and the sleeves. Now all I have left is the miles and miles of I-cord. Then I have to sew it together. I am hoping that I will be able to reveal it to you tomorrow. Until then you'll have to be satified with this...
The camera does lie. Even though the I-cord looks black. It is in fact a royal purple. I'll take a better shot soon. I hope.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Currently available

Novelty Yarn is currently available for sale from these web sites:
To find Novelty Yarn on the Knitting Vault web site. Log on to the site. Click on 'Search Catalog'. This page will assist your search by asking for the name of the designer. Select Olavia's. It will also request the type of merchandise. Select CD>Knititng Stories. A picture of Novelty Yarn should appear.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

How I wrote a knitting book

West Coast Knitter's News arrived today. I patiently wait for it to arrive six times a year. This issue did not disappoint. I flipped by interesting articles. One announcing the guild's recent moves: in to the Oarkridge community and on to the net. The announcement was written by the editor Paulette Lane. Another article written by Holli Yeoh invites knitters to explore knitting podcasts. I scanned these and other articles then quickly turned the page. Page after page I flipped. I was searching for something. Finally on the second last page I found it.

How I wrote a knitting book
by Leanne Dyck

Like all journeys, this one began with a single step. I was at a house party and innocently told a friend, "I'd like to start a writing group."

"Well," advised the friend, "you should talk to (name withheld to protect the innocent)." And a few short weeks later the Mayne Island writers group was formed.

I immediately began to benefit from the group. The first lesson I learnt was in order for skills to be sharpened you have to practice them. So I made a commitment to write daily.
I had tried this strategy before and had failed miserably. Not wanting this same fate I decided to go public by way of a blog.

Daily writing is difficult. You begin to run out of ideas. When this happens you have to dig deep. You have to crave off the fat to reach the bone. What really matters to you begins to be exposed. You begin to write from your heart.

I began to write about my passion: knitting. Each time I did this my readership grew. People where actually logging on to read my writing. Go figure? It amazed me.

The idea started to percolate in my brain that I could write a book.

Still the sheer volume of writing scared me. Even a short book is 100 pages. How could I write 100 pages?

Day after day I wrote. I kept the good bits and forgot about the bad.

I shared my best stuff not only with my blogging readership but with the talented writers of the writers group. They gave me the feedback I needed in order to grow.

I soon began to realize that my goal of publishing a book was attainable.

Upon reviewing my writing I realized how very dear to me this story was. Visualizing a publisher molding and forming it made me churn. No, the only answer for me at this time was self-publishing. I wanted to tell my story in my words in my way.

I have always thoroughly enjoyed clicking my knitting needles to the sound of audio books. I knew there were many other knitters who felt the same. I was surprised to realize that, (to my knowledge) there wasn't an audio book written by a knitter for the knitting community. An audio book that celebrated knitting called out to be written. Was it possible?

Fortunately for me the man I married had considerable computer skills. It is due to his patience, dedication and talent that Novelty Yarn has such high-quality sound.

The family I married into is jam-packed-full of talented musicians. The most talented is my brother-in-law Tim Dyck. He composed and performed the beautiful instrumentals which knit the readings together.

Self-publishing is a misnomer. Many hands were involved in the creation of Novelty Yarn. From the members of the Mayne Island writer's group who carefully edited it to the island printer who designed the CD cover.

Recently, a friend, clutching the CD in her hand, said, "You should be very proud."

Know what? I am.
A journey of a thousand miles begins with one step. Don't be afraid to take that first step.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Picture this...

Why do we always think we look so much better than we do...
Oh, well. at least I do look happy with my sticks and my wares spread before me.
This pic was taken last week-end at the craft fair.
Some artisans have an eye for display. I do not. Working on the theory that practice makes perfect my skills should greatly improve in this area next year.
Advice from a chat group I read: play with your display at home. Once you are happy with it take a picture. Bring the picture with you to the event. Setting up your display should be a breeze.
I didn't have enough time to play before this last craft fair. Hopefully I will be able to schedule in time before December 9th.
What am I knitting? Well, I have recently found wonderful natural yarns in my stash: camel, angora, lama, alpaca. You can avoid the muse when you are treated to such delights. I have this great idea for a shawl and can't wait to share it with you so I am working over time.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Emailed patterns

Please note the new price for emailed patterns. The price is now $5. world-wide. There is no shipping added. Fast, easy, and affordable.
Knit on my friends, knit on.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Busy weekend

The craft fair was successful. It was a beautiful location. I was surrounded by friends. What better way to spend the day.
I arrived at 11:30 am and the craft fair shared at 10:00 am. Much thanks to friends who babysat my stuff. They even sold somethings. Nice.
Now as you can see I am busy planning, designing, knitting, and writing for December.
This craft show is run through the farmer's market. Mayne Island's farmer's market runs from the Victoria Day in May to Thanksgiving in October. Come rain or shine the participants sell their wares outside. December is our last hurray. This time we sell our wares inside the Agricultural society hall.
This year our art council had a table at the market. Thus allowing me to work at my island jobs while having others sell my wares. December kicks off my ability to participate fully in the market. Next spring through to fall I will be standing outside with my fellow vendors.
This December 9th please come visit me at the Agricultural society hall. See you then.

Friday, November 10, 2006

I'm okay

Just a short post to assure you that I am okay. There was a serious storm last night. The electricity was cut. There was some doubt as to if we would actually have ferry service today. ...but all is now well. Except for my wrists however. They have gone on strike. I wanted to have that kit ready. And I was even hoping to have a pair of socks done. All for tomorrow's craft show. You know what they say about the best laid plans. I have now realized that I am only human. I have a bunch of baby sweaters, a harvest of hats, and three Islandias. That combined with Novelty Yarn (and some jewelry) I am hoping will be sufficient.
Fingers crossed.

I just received an email from
It says, "your "Learning to knit" post is set to publish on Saturday."
So please log on and check it out. Thank you.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Happy anniversary to us

Congratulations. Today is our anniversary. Do you believe we made it through a whole year together? This blog began last year on this exact date. My goal in starting this blog was to sharpen my skills as a writer. When I began to post I was naive. I had no idea where this would lead. Where did it lead? Well, thanks to you and your support this blog has resulted in the publishing of two books: Novelty Yarn (CD) and Maynely True (paper back available soon). It has also resulted in the launching of a brand new blog: Leanneism.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006


The process involved in pattern writing is markedly different from any other writing I engage in.
Writing prose or poetry may take me a matter of minutes. I am assaulted by an idea usually either before I go to bed or when I wake. I cease my pen and begin to scribble. It pours forth from my pen. Later it is transcribed by the key-board. A copy is then printed for each member of my writing group. On the last Monday of each month the piece is then dissected.
In pattern writing I am not offered this type of reckless abandon. This type of writing forces me to slow down and think. I approach the process as a scientist may an experiment.
I begin with a rough idea. This idea may be captured in words or by a drawing. The idea slowly begins to come to life when I start to knit a prototype. As I knit I keep careful notes. Next I use these notes to knit the final garment. As I knit I edit my notes. Once I am finished knitting I once again edit my notes: proof-reading them to ensure clarity and conciseness. I then produce a final copy of the pattern.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Stop and admire the yarn

I finished one of the Santa hats yesterday.
I am so pleased at the way it turned out. It is worked in Mayne Island home-spun. Beautiful!
I am currently working on another Santa hat. This one is worked in acrylic.
That's what I have been doing this morning racing along with my little knitting needles.
You know you would think spending a great deal of time with yarn would make me a patient person. Sadly this is not the case. I jump over fences when I could simply of walked through the gate. It was open.
I do things without thinking. Case in point, Maynely True. I had a friend of mine edit it this week-end. I thought, she won't find anything. It's perfect. ..but just to be sure I'll take this extra step. Of course I could have done this before I sent it to the printer ...but no I was too busy jumping over fences. Well she did find a few things. Then I looked it over and found a few other things. So I had to stop the presses or er printer. What was the rush? Why didn't I just slow down. No excuse. I have no excuse.
Goodness knows I am surrounded by enough beautiful things to give me pause. Case in point, what came in the mail this morning.

Beautiful! This lovely yarn will be transformed into....? Ah just a little tease. Believe me I will keep you posted.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Racing to the finish

Only 5 more days to the craft show.
My friend stopped by yesterday for a visit and to pick up my stuff for the craft show. After a few minutes she offered to come back next Friday to pick it up. I was thankful for her pity. : )
I really am up to my elbows in wool. I am almost finished the last Islandia. I started a Santa hat and am thinking that two Santa hats may be sufficient. I am still hopeful that I can get one series of kits finished. Wish me luck. I'll need it.
Amidst it all I am in the middle of finishing off a new book. Maynely True is a knitting-free zone book. No yarn or needles were harmed in the making of the book.
I can hear you asking, "So Leanne if the book is not about knitting what is it about?"
I could write for hours on what it is about. Where the inspiration for the book came from. What I was hoping to accomplish by writing it.
...but....but please re-read the first couple of paragraphs.
So I will simply direct you to
Thank you for understanding.

Friday, November 03, 2006

I'm wr-wr-wr-...

Okay, I can say it "I'm wrong". Goodness knows I've had enough practice with the sentence. The prior post gave you false info. It is not a Mayne Island only display. I believe we are playing nice with our sister islands. I believe you are going to have a rare treat. Not only will you see the work of Mayne Island artists but also those from Pender, Saturna and Galiano. Don't all run to the Cumberland at once now. : )

Maynely art on the ferry

Yesterday I spent a portion of the day writing a promo sheet for Novelty Yarn: collecting quotes from reviews, editing a short resume, and ensuring that order information was included.


Allow me to explain: the Queen of Cumberland ferry runs from Mayne Island to the mainland. On this ferry is Trincomali Community Art Council's display case. Four islands (Pender, Saturna, Galiano, and Mayne) take turns showing off their artists' work in this case. It's now Mayne Island's turn.

Island artists take turns assembling the art and creating the display. Well saying take turns is not exactly correct. Do you know the 80 per-cent/20 per-cent rule? Basically the rule is that 80 per-cent of the work is done by 20 per-cent of the people. The case is no different. The work falls on a small group of artists who have shown talent in the area of arranging. It requires an artist's eye. Much thanks to this small group of talented artists.

The display case should be ready sometime next week. So please watch for Maynely art on the Queen of Cumberland ferry. Feel free to ooh and aah. We like that.

To learn more about the Trincomali Community Arts Council please log on to: and go to the links page. Thank you.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

My tut

My electoral tutor was so sweet. He (I know it's a he) would ask me to do something. I did it. The he would say, "Congratulations, Leanne, you just..." It was so cute! The only time I encountered troubles was when I told myself, "it really can't be that easy." and looked for a harder way. Isn't this always the way? I would like to personally thank the software designer who designed the Contribute tutorial program. At the end I really thought I could do it all. Well, I may not be able to do it all ...but I can do some. Can you spot the changes? Take a tour around my site and see if you can. What's next? The sky's the limit.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Learning something new

Okay, if you have been reading this blog for a while you'll know how hesistate I am to learn something new. Yup, hesistate that's the word.

You may also know that I'm not a "computer geek". No, I far prefer sticks and string.

Yet as a knitwear designer in this modern age you know sooner or later that you'll have to get warm and cozy with the evil computer.

I've come along way from the days when I was afraid that the computer would blow up if I turned it on. Much thanks to both my Hubby and my web designer.

Next, latest step: I have just finished a tutorial for a program that will allow me to update Me by myself, alone. Oh the power.

Was I hesistate to learn? Yup. But my web designer thought that I could learn. So I gave it a try.

Will I be able to implement what I have learnt? Keep logging on and watch for the results.