Because we need some comfort right now…



How are you doing? I wondered if it would seem rather ridiculous talking about a cardigan when the world is going to hell in  handcart. But I know, for me anyway, a little normality in the chaos, is absolutely what I need. And wine. Lotsa wine.

So we went to Level 3 here in NZ on Monday, with the directive we would be at Level 4 in 48 hours. That is basically STAY AT HOME & isolated with your “bubble” for all but essential workers. I’ve never worked from home before, but I managed to get a work PC & printer (because my own PC decided it would be a good time to sh*t itself, and I couldn’t get it fixed in time, yay!) & have a nice wee set up at home.

Health & Safety issue you say?

Mr D is also working from home, thankfully he has his own PC & laptop set up in his Man Lounge, so we are able to separate to work, meeting for lunch on the deck. Somehow I’ve ended up being barista, tea lady, lunch lady, chef & baker. At least I don’t have to empty the dishwasher (I draw the line!) I realize how incredibly lucky we both are to have our jobs & the opportunity to work at home comfortably. I have friends doing the mahi with kids at home, I don’t know how they do it!

My sister on her walk around the block yelling at me from the other side of the hedge! 

So one of the pieces of advice I read for those new to working from home is to have a routine, and finds ways of separating home distractions & work. My usual morning routine is me charging around the house, shower, dress, grab lunch & go. No breakfast (I’m not remotely hungry first thing) not even coffee until I get to work.

I saw the movie The Post  a while back (worth watching) , and there is a lovely scene where Meryl Streep’s character is sitting in her glorious home in Washington DC, wearing a lovely nightgown,  enjoying a coffee and reading a paper early in the morning, preparing for the day. I thought why do I not start the day like that,  instead of me looking confused in a scrubby tee & pants trying to find something to wear that doesn’t need ironing?

While I still don’t look as glam as Meryl, at least my new routine is preparing coffees (I love you Nespresso) & sitting on the deck in the sunshine before logging on for the day. I’m planning on making some Carolyn PJ’s to get rid of the manky tees once and for all. I feel Meryl would  approve.

Oh a headscarf you say…?

So dressing for work, when it involves a five second walk through the kitchen and sitting at the dining table all day?

I made my first Cashmerette Springfield top a few years ago now, perfect for using pretty fabric & ideal for wearing under another fav item, a nice cardigan. Now I know a cardi isn’t everyone’s cup of tea ( I’ve even heard “cardigan wearer” used as a term of derision) but I personally love them. Softer & more comfortable than a jacket, they can be chunky, pretty with embroidery, soft & snugly or cool in cotton.

So when Cashmerette brought out the Fuller Cardigan recently, I was very pleased. I had picked up some gorgeous merino from The Fabric Store recently (on sale) and some fab rayon in my favorite autumn colours from Spotlight, a whole outfit was forming.


The cardigan came together pretty quickly. Now I think we can see it isn’t perfect! My knit game is not as strong as it could be, and I’m continuing a hate hate relationship with my interfacing, but its still perfectly wearable (for me anyway) . I made View A, with a deep V, I don’t actually have any suitable buttons (and won’t be shopping for any in the near future) but to be honest I probably wouldn’t use them anyway.


The merino is quite lightweight, perfect for this time of year, when it’s just not quite warm enough (who am I kidding, it’s never hot enough for me until it’s too hot, I have about a 5 C margin of error 🙂 . The rayon in the singlet is also lightweight, the perfect layering outfit for Autumn or Spring. Or whatever temp you might be sitting inside in right now!

So if, like us here Downunder you are confined to barracks, what would be good to do while relaxing in your gorgeous knitwear? Whether you’re on your own & looking for something fun, or desperately trying to hide from the rest of your bubble before you throttle them? Or coming home exhausted working the front lines of the local Hospital/Supermarket/Pharmacy/Bus/Rubbish Truck?

Baking is always good (although we have a bit of a flour shortage her, clearly many internal domestic goddesses are being embraced) If you can get your hands on the white stuff, how about these Spinach & Cheese scones? The super easy DELICIOUS recipe is from a fabulous local bakery here in Auckland, get it here



If you are more of a sweet tooth, how about these? I used cranberries, pecans & dark chocolate, but I’d say the options are endless. Recipe by David Lebovitz here


So you’ve got your scone or cookie (actually we’d call that a biscuit here in NZ, but cookie does sound comforting doesn’t it?), now something to read?

I’ve just finished this fabulous book by Peter Swanson, it seems to have different titles in the UK or US, but either way, its a great twisty read, perfect if you like murder mysteries & that smug feeling when an author drops a sneaky reference to book you love…and you nod knowingly. Yes you do, don’t deny it…

Maybe watching is more you thing? If you are a mystery lover you might also like Knives Out, a film I saw about four months ago, and LOVED. A clever closed room murder mystery,  and Daniel Craig, need I say more?

Not a mystery buff? A show playing on UK television, that’s also been picked up here by TVNZ called The Repair Shop is bringing me (and my husband and I expect many others) so much joy . It’s TV the British do best, clever, low key & yet completely lovely & quietly emotional . If you can get through an episode with a quite happy tear or three you’re a better woman than I.

So much for natural colour…

Lastly, can I suggest embracing the headscarf? I don’t know about you but my lovely hairdresser is just a mirage in the distance, my current reality is a skunk stripe growing more noticeable by the day. I predict headscarves will be VERY in this season!

Hope where ever you are you are ok, managing what is a super anxious time & looking after yourself (or someone is looking after you!). I think our Prime Minister , definitely a woman you want to have in charge during a crisis, said it best…

Be Kind

Kristina x









  1. says:

    Those are lovely colors on you. I just purchased the Fuller pattern and want to sew it up. My mojo is moving slow but steady. First to (hopefully) finish the face masks the health world is asking to prolong the life of their M95 masks. I do hope another call isn’t made desperately looking for more. Not that I cannot fill the need with my stash and it would help to get rid of a lot of small bits and pieces and fabric I no longer feel inspired by. Good for you in being able to set a routine that keeps you moving forward and not throttling your hubby.

    Let’s hope we move on from this with all safe and healthy. Our shelter in place time has been extended to May 1. The next few weeks are supposed to be the peak with a hopefully long summer break before fall and winter brings it back. Come on Vaccine in the 12 month range and mitigating drugs for the near term. Though I am concerned this virus hit the Southern Hemisphere during summer and there were difficulties with the virus. Well, cross your fingers


    1. plumkitchen says:

      Hi Susan, oh thats awesome making face masks, good for you x Yes it’s really scary times, we just have to follow the best advice, try & help each and keep on keeping on. I do have times when its just feels way to much, but in the grand scheme of things a few months of relative inconvinience isnt that huge (Im speaking for myself here, for some its clearly really tough :(. Stay safe, keep sewing, good luck with the Fuller, its a lovely comfort blanket! xxx PS yes fingers are crossed x


  2. Pat says:

    Good morning Kristina,
    I enjoyed your post…thank your sharing…the photos, your thoughts and a bit of your life Down Under!


    1. plumkitchen says:

      Hi Pat, thanks so much, I can’t do much but its nice to share a bit of chat & some new things to read & watch, thanks for reading xxx


  3. Patti says:

    Your cardigan and head scarf are perfect for this trying time! Thank you, too, for the scone and cookie recipes. We are looking for new things to try during our “shelter in place” here in South Carolina. These look yummy!!


    1. plumkitchen says:

      Thanks Patti x Stay safe & bake! They are both delish, I hope you enjoy xxx


  4. Diane D. Parham says:

    What a lovely post. I have The Fuller Cardigan pattern. Need to go through the stash for some fabric. Your print top is perfect and those shoes OMG!! I’m off to print off those recipes as they look delicious. As they tell us in Oregon, Stay Home and Stay Safe.


    1. plumkitchen says:

      Thanks Diane, yes do enjoy the recipes, I can’t attest to any health benefits, but they will make you happy 🙂 Ha ha, I have far to many shoes…or is that even a thing? Anyway, you too take care & stay safe xxx


  5. Naomi says:

    Kia kaha Kristina. You look lovely and your tips for surviving lock down look great too! X


    1. plumkitchen says:

      Thanks Naomi x Hope you guys are ok down there , stay safe (oh and you have flour (its like the new loo paper?!) xxx

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Sandra says:

    Oh! A fellow fan for The Repair Shop – I’m currently onto the repeats and love it. We were heading over to the UK this May (but cancelled) and high on the bucket list was a visit to the open museum in the south of England where the show was filmed. Nevermind, it will still be there next year. During our self-isolation here in Cairns, I’m finding reading fabulous chatty blogs like your lovely blog so relaxing – thank you. Off to make those scones – take care, stay safe and may the force be with you 💞


    1. plumkitchen says:

      Hi Sandra, oh I’m sorry your trip was cancelled, but yes, next year! Im also very keen to visit, so fascinating. So glad you are enjoying some relazing blog reading, I’ll admit I worried a bit about sounding flippant, but figure a bit of distraction might be welcome for some of us when it all get’s a bit much. Stay safe & I hope you enjoy the scones!! xxx


  7. Wendie Young says:

    Hi Kristina, your colour combo is excellent, especially the little pop of the blue with your shoes. Yes I noticed. We are doing very well coping with stay at home . Having said that my groom is getting itchy to go to the supermarket. I personaly don’t have the same addiction. Mine is Spotlight and Bunnings for plants. Yes I’m staying away from them but I’m sure I could find another hole in the garden to plug and some fabric or notions that I REALLY NEED. I did get a request for shortbread . What? it’s not Christmas but apparently it’s comfort food. Fair enough. So I’ll keep doing the things I love sewing knitting gardening playing sudoku. Go me . Blessed to be in my mid 70’s not having to ‘go’ to work..Stay well dearheart.


    1. plumkitchen says:

      Hi Wendie, I’m so glad you noticed, I love it too! 🙂 I have done one Supermarket run, trying to go as infrequently as we possibly can but yes, missing my Spotlight fix (and my poor Mum is REALLY missing the garden centre!) But I must say its lovely to have such home based hobbies, I feel our time really has come! 😉 Mmmm shortbread, now that does sound tempting! Stay love lovely xxx


  8. M-C says:

    Oh thank you so much! I’m a bit late to the party, but I just got a cardigan candidate in the mail to celebrate my recent layoff, so I am in the mood for all that. We love the Repair Shop too, so soothing, and the library just happened to have a Swanson up for borrowing.. I had a croissant for breakfast, so I’ll probably wait till tomorrow for scones. In turn let me recommend “Emily in Paris” on Netflix and


    1. plumkitchen says:

      Oh perfect, I picked up buttermilk at the supermarket yesterday for soda bread, this looks much more fun! It’s a long weekend here so perfect for Emily in Paris, thanks! X


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