28 November 2007

in the continuing saga of home repair and improvement

remember the squirrel in my apartment?

i have been told his name is "chippy". well, chippy & friends still have a way in and out of my closet and they have been taking advantage of that. hopefully that will stop today because the landlords have ponied up the bucks to have the gutters and fascia replaced on the house.

well, almost.

the contractors were supposed to be here at 8am. they didn't arrive until 11:15. now i am concerned about the way they swing a ladder. my windows may not be so safe in this adventure...

and i was the naive one who thought all of my problems from the last apartment would be solved by living on the top floor. nope. new problems. mostly related to ladders and squirrels.

major knitting questions....
do i start another pasha? or another pair of fetching? i promised one of each to friends. due date is after the holiday, but i am considering getting started now so 2008 can be the year of the sock right from the get-go.

gathered pullover is coming along. well, the first sleeve is. it is the perfect mindless knitting for sitting in a design run or rehearsal.

the end

loop scarfit is official. i have knit (or crocheted) all of the gifts i set out to complete this holiday season. i have even put handmade care instruction tags on all of them. and it is before december 1st!
sometimes (and this is one of those times) i get to say.... i am just that good.

details on the last official gifty.

Garter Stitch Loop-Through Scarf
designed by Marci Richardson
published in 101 Designer On-Skein Wonders by Judith Durant

knit in Debbie Bliss Alpaca Silk (2 skeins #08... i call it "butterscotch" 80% alpaca 20% silk) from my stash on size US 7 bamboo needles.

started: november 23, 2007
finished: november 25, 2007

i made some pretty major adjustments to the numbers on this pattern because it is written for sportweight yarn, and when i was working with sport weight yarn, i was knitting it on a size US 4.

i am very pleased with how the heavier weight piece turned out. the stitches have much better definition than they had in the 100% alpaca yarn i was using. i'll save it for a lacy hat i want to make from the same book. my stash will not go to waste.

i also think this color will be really great on the girlfriend i knit it for. since i can't wear the color, i need to find someone who can! the yarn is too yummy! and the great thing is that i still have 3 skeins of this stuff for a little gifty i plan to make for someone else on their birthday next year.

maybe i will succeed with my upcoming yarn diet.

26 November 2007

deck the halls

sunday night i put the tree up. i didn't do it last year, so i had to use my brain about where everything was put away two years ago. it went better than expected considering, and it was very fast because my friend madhatternalice helped me.

in fact, i think he was more excited about the tree than i was. i guess it is understandable. i grew up decorating a tree for the holiday and he didn't. and really, which is more exciting? the Maccabees? or bubble lights?

i may go to hell for that one. i'll redeem myself with a list....

Things I Learned Decorating a Tree With a Man

1. the concept of shaping an artificial tree to look more natural is entirely absurd if you think about it too much.
2. it seems like all men try to tie up the tree by stringing lights too tight.
3. if you have more than 10 Gone With the Wind ornaments, be prepared to be mocked.
4. the right cute ornament can melt anyone's heart. got penguins? how about a plastic canvas panda bear?
5. pink tinsel mini trees are not for everyone. but they are for me! (sorry i don't have a picture of it.)

tree is up! it was educational and fun.
we were also supposed to watch Six Feet Under, but that didn't happen. only down side to the night. boo.

now that the tree is ready, i want to wrap all of my presents so that i can put them underneath and make it even prettier! i still need to finish my care tags for the knit things. but when i am done with them, the wrapping can begin!

i finished the garter loop through scarf yesterday. post about that soon!

25 November 2007

the royal treatment

scarfon friday i finished my latest store model. this one was fun to knit. i love the fiber... i got to make up a pattern... and grey is one of my favourite colors to knit.

enough nonsense....

here are the details!

Staggered Rib Scarf
designed by kittything
pattern available as a free download.

knit in Plymouth Royal Llama Silk (3 skeins #1002 "agate" 60% fine llama, 40% silk) purchased at K+S=B on size US 7 bamboo needles [a present from donna!]

started: november 5th (ish?), 2007
finished november 23, 2007

scarf on kittyi sorta lied about the start date. maybe. i started the scarf over in several different designs. this was the fourth version. because it is a store model you have many things to consider when picking a pattern.

1. we wanted something i made up so we could give it away free with purchase of yarn at the shop.
2. the yarn should be the focus as much (if not more) than the stitch pattern.
3. we specifically wanted to knit something that would be appealing to both male knitters and women knitting for men.
4. it can't be too difficult or people won't feel confident that they can complete it.

fortunately the stars aligned on this project. men like things that are simple. simple = easy to knit. and finally, this yarn's texture is so eye catching that it swallowed any more complicated designs i attempted.

i am a sock knitter, and i will admit that i was inspired in this deign by the Gentleman's Fancy Sock from Knitting Vintage Socks. simple. elegant. unisex.

and who doesn't like some silk and delicious llama?

in alpaca news!
i am frogging my first attempt at the garter loop through scarf. the hot pink sportweight alpaca is simply not cutting it. it looks too limp and smooshy. the stitch definition also leaves something to be desired.

so i reworked the numbers last night and cast on for a worsted weight version out of Debbie Bliss Alpaca Silk i had in my stash. the silk really helps the alpaca have some body. stitches look good, and this thing is so much faster to knit on US 7 than a US 4! i have more than made up for the lost frogging time. woo!

i may get it finished up tomorrow! we shall see. the holiday tree is supposed to go up tomorrow.

ps- in the photo of me modeling the scarf.... the little skull pin? yeah, his "crossbones" are made of crochet hooks. he was a present. i have the coolest friends!

22 November 2007


happy thanksgiving to all the other folks in the good old USA. to everyone else--hi! hear about our holiday! i had a low(ish) key holiday and a few adventures. more will come with the weekend. i think we need a bulleted list.
  • my apartment is incredibly clean. i get to feel superior about this until january 1st when i realize i need to take down the holiday decor.
  • i forgot to clean the blades on the kitchen fan, and i have decided that this will not dampen my sense of superiority over those who partied and visited all day. ha.
  • my cousins called me. it was jess's number, so when her husband was on the other end of the line gobbling madly at me... well, needless to say it gave me a bit of a start. and a laugh.
  • i lost my wallet. this caused me to call my mother... swearing and spitting. i was a regular pirate. without the eye patch. or rum.
  • the nice vietnamese family that runs the beer/wine store found it and they kept it for me until my dumb ass figured out i lost it and came back. i am glad i drink and have a regular place where i buy my libations.
  • i had dinner with one of my bestest friends who was also unable to make it home to the family. she and i have been pals for 17 years. that is right up there with family.
  • we went to La Tasca downtown for tapas, which were bountiful. the highlight was a fried eggplant with amazing garlic cheese dip. we also had a pitcher of sangria and dessert.
  • i work tomorrow. at the store. on black friday. boo. hisssss!
  • holiday tree goes up this weekend! i'll post pictures.
for those of you that are traveling over the next few days, please be safe!

21 November 2007


so i thought the little skull ring i posted about a few days ago was cool....

(and it still is!)

and then the same jeweler posted The Big Skull Ring. you need to click the picture of the person wearing it to really "get" the scale. they say they make it any size.... i think they don't mean for 5.5, however.

but i can dream.

i can also dream of one day being as awesome as wendy. not only does she have an adorable cat, knits like a genius, and is a good knitwear designer to boot.... now she is freaking making challah! and that makes me want to cry a little.

i have an extreme weakness for challah.
and it makes no sense! i didn't grow up with it. no one in my family makes it (that i can recall) and i honestly cannot say when i first had it, but boy hoo! i was hooked.

i can eat an entire loaf.

by myself.

in one sitting.

and if it has been around for a day or so and gets turned into french toast, hold on to your hat. i will eat the french toast until i am full. and then i will have one more piece. and if it is a small "one more" piece, i might have to go back again. then i feel sick, but i don't mind because it is that freaking good.

cable girl

cables on meyesterday after working at the shop i didn't have a lot of energy for other work, so i mostly just tried to get my life organized better to make this holiday week productive.

and when i couldn't do that anymore, i knit this little darling up. look at that picture.... it is obvious i could not do more work. even my hair looks tired. (don't mock.)

i know, i know. the project looks very familiar because i have made one before. this summer, actually. well. i had the yarn i thought would be perfect. and it is fun to knit up. the cabled neck tube is extremely satisfying.

i also like to call it the "loss-proof" scarf. the cynics of the world may also choose to call it the "knitted neck brace", but those people don't get handmade gifts.

cabled necktubeCherry Garcia Cabled Neck Tube
designed by Adrian Bizilia
published on www.HelloYarn.com

knit in Plymouth Baby Alpaca Grande (1 ball #403 dark grey, 100% baby alpaca) on 10" size US 10 double point needle.

started: november 20, 2007
finished: november 20, 2007

i love this yarn. it probably lands on my list of all time, top 5, stranded on a desolate island and this is all i get to knit with yarns. i should put some more thought into what that list would be.

or maybe i should just watch High Fidelity again and stop making lists.

20 November 2007

ennui bunny gets a friend

several months ago a little friend came to live with me, and his big floppy pink ears and glassy little eyes have been making me smile ever since. i was thinking he looked a little sadder as the months passed--like he may be suffering from bunny ennui.

we had a little chat.
i offered him a pal, but there is a condition... we have to let the pal go make someone else happy after he perked us up a bit. bunny agreed.

at first he was skeptical, wondering if i meant to keep my word and where on earth i would find him a friend.

but then.... !!!!!

oh, hi! you looking for me?

hurry off you two, the holidays are almost here and your new friend has an important date!

the new bunny is for my nephew, and the photo series is for hannah. she is having a contest, and while i don't expect to win, i hope the bunnies make her smile because she is a genius when it comes to making little crocheted friends!

so i won't do a full project run down on the green bunny.
he is exactly the same as ennui bunny with two minor exceptions. he is made entirely out of Berroco Touche (the pink yarn was Tahki Cotton Classic) and because he is going to live with my nephew soon, he has embroidered eyes instead of boot button eyes. i love how little details entirely change the personality of a stuffed friend.

one gift to go....

down with the d-to-the-k

son of stitch and bitchi saw the cover of this book and i knew i had to have it. i have two great graphic obsessions: skulls and argyle. look at the model in the foreground! i was ready to swoon. then i noticed that he was pretty attractive as well....

we will discuss the books before the knitting.

i think the book is just great. when it comes to a book with patterns, i have a formula to determine if i can buy it. a loose leaf pattern costs (on average) $5. so i look through the book and determine if there is one pattern for every $5 i spend that i will knit.

let me say that this book has well over the required 3 patterns to let me buy it. the accessories are fantastic. hats, scarves, socks. wow. (the lucky socks are one of my favs). the sweaters are 6 of 1, half dozen of the other. it is all about personal taste. i can say that i looked through the sweaters and said "i know a guy would would wear each of these". they aren't all geared toward the same man... but you don't get bogged down in heavy colorwork or the absurd numbers of cables that most handknit men's sweaters strive for.

all this being said, there are a few big fat duds. like the stripper pole scarf... it is an illusion knit scarf and the image in the illusion knitting is a woman on a stripper pole. i would need to be seriously compelled were that to ever be cast on to my needles. as far as i am concerned, neither love nor money would compel me.

the beer bottle pillows are pretty lame as well. i wouldn't knit them for a man because they are a sizable enough project that you would need to be serious about him before casting on. and if you are that serious, there is a possibility that the pillow could end up on your couch one day soon. this is not a good thing.

lest you think i have gone over to the other side and lost my taste for kitsch, i will say the knitted lucha libre ski masks are pretty cool. i think this comes from my midwestern upbringing. if it is cold enough that you actually have to wear a ski mask, it should be amusing.

back to the cover.
i covet the double-knit argyle scarf. as i mentioned, i love argyle, and i really want to learn to double-knit. double-knitting is not hard in theory, nor is it easy in practice. go here and scroll down to see a video of it being done.

(warning: for all my non-knitters... you are about to enter a scary knitting zone.)

i swatched the scarf last night, or at least i tried. woo, baby! finding the best way to hold your yarns is tricky tricky. i thought i should try the two handed method knitting one color english and one continental (i am a continental knitter... to a fault.) but that made a mess. i tried to do both continental coming off my index finger with plucking one color and wrapping the other. no-go, but better.

so now i am trying to do a more standard continental with both yarns in my left hand but the knit yarn plucked from my index finger and purl yarn plucked from my middle finger. this is very tricky for me because i usually feed my stitches up the needle with my middle finger, and ring finger was in an unfortunate accident in my misguided crafting youth that has sapped his strength to the point that he can't manage that job alone.

(end knitter's jargon)

the challenges continue.
if i ever learn how to hold my yarn, i promise i won't bitch too much about the fact that the scarf will probably take me a whole year to finish. as it stands right now, i may well do better to begin tackling intarsia so i can make myself some real argyle socks.

on the opposite end of the timeconsuming spectrum, i am almost done with my final crochet project of the 2007 holidays.

19 November 2007


supersquirrelthere is a squirrel in my apartment. he is very confused about what i am doing in this dwelling.

the feeling is mutual.


grandma kitty

i know just enough about technology to have a lot of fun with it. as opposed to the things i know just enough about to be dangerous. like repairing my own car.

i knew technorati existed. i never really dug into what it is or noticed that my blog has its own page. freaking weird, man. i don't have time to see everything on the internet! i have things to knit and crochet!

speaking of... two other things.

1. i don't like the keyword tags that technorati filtered to the top for my blog. they make me feel shallow. i mean... when was the last time i tagged something "parties"? hell, when was the last time i went to a party?

2. knit.1 magazine. high on patterns. low on content. i know i am way behind the curve because it came out in september, but what is up with the interview of Tori Spelling and her husband Dean McDermott?

i have nothing against them. go. be happy.

i do have something against reading a fluff article about what cool knitters they are to only discover in said article that they each only know the knit stitch. tori cannot cast on or bind off for herself... and she has been "knitting" for 4 years!

tori says...
One day I decided I wanted a hobby, something to do instead of vegging out in front of the TV. I wanted to be productive and creative. I had already tried painting and that didn't work, so I drove to a store and sat inside with the ladies for six hours while they taught me to knit.

maybe i am also down on this article because Vickie Howell did the interview, and her taste (in this one woman's opinion) leaves much to be desired.

but now that i have said something mean about her taste, i do discover that her blog can be a source of useful and interesting information. like the fact that Will Forte knits.

18 November 2007

chet baker and me

i love skull-a-day.

i hate skull-a-day.

it is a website devoted to one person's year long quest to make a skull image every day. you know, in the name of art. every week they do something called "Braincase" which is a round up of skully things readers have spotted.

braincase always has something i want. like deliriously expensive skull chocolates. or the fantastic ring you see above.

see, i thought i was safe because i won't buy expensive chocolates for myself and the ring only comes in a size 7. (i wear the much smaller 5 1/2) but nooooo.

the metal artists who make that ring have another very cool ring that comes custom sized. and earrings that are no size at all. it is a good thing i don't wear enough earrings to justify it. but the ring. oh the temptation! i cannot be tempted. not the same day i had a serious discussion of my finances. sigh! maybe Santa will bring me some skulls.

i fall in love too easily.

cables a-go-go

log cabin socksi met my needlework goal for the weekend. i was either going to finish my log cabin socks or knit the entire first ball of the Blue Sky Alpaca into the garter loop scarf.


these babies are soaking in my sink right now so i can block them. i should try knitting my socks two at a time on circulars. i try on the first sock i knit in a pair so many times that it always ends up stretched out compared to the second sock. i should also lay down the law and not let other people try the first one on. this happens more often than i like.


Log Cabin Socks
designed by Anne Woodbury
published in Handknit Holidays

men's size knit in Plymouth Encore (2 balls #045 olive green, 25% wool, 75% acrylic) purchased at K+S=B on size 5 Crystal Palace Bamboo DPNs.

started: september 20, 2007
finished: november: 18, 2007

it looks like these socks took a long time to finish, but in fact they were very quick. i didn't touch them for the entire month of october... well... beyond picking up the casted on needles and moving them around my apartment hoping i would be moved to work on the 2nd sock.

i'm not a particularly fast or focused sock knitter so these took about a total of 6-8 days worth of knitting time. i will say... big needle socks are so fast! (compared to my usual socks) big man foot socks are not so fast. i bet in my size i could finish a pair of these in a weekend.

as a sock knitter i must learn to discipline myself to write down what i did on the first sock. i worked this pattern almost entirely as written until i got to the toe. i continued the cable pattern into the toe because it looked less bulbous than the plain toe.

somehow i have fraternal toes!
i thought i knit them exactly the same, but they look slightly different. maybe it is the stretched out 1st sock and not the knitting of the 2nd that looks funny. i dunno.

at any rate, i am starting to be less embarrassed by my Work In Progress count. two holiday gifts to go! it looks more and more like someone else may get to slide onto the last minute list.

unless i get selfish and knit my sweater instead. ooooh. sweater.

17 November 2007

coy? who, me?

manos ballit is official. the Manos del Uruguay project is finished. too bad the recipient is one of my close girlfriends and a blog reader. no pictures for you until december. oh, the suspense!

i can say that the little ball at left is all i have left. isn't Bramble a pretty color? yum. and the wool was fun to knit with.

so that brings the completed gift count to 11. i have 2 active gift projects on the needles, and i need to start one last crochet project. we will see if anyone else sneaks on the last minute list.

on thursday i went to lunch and christmas shopping with my galpal A. she and i hadn't had big kid one on one time in awhile. her hubby was at work, the little one was in daycare, and she didn't have class. it was great. we ate. we shopped. we laughed.

i scored both my father's birthday gift and his "purchased" holiday gift. once i finish his 2nd knitted gift (the log cabin socks) i should be done with him. stocking excluded, but i always do the stocking gift last minute. he can be hard to buy for.

i don't do last minute. he pushes me to it sometimes, but i love him anyway.

i need an idea for my grandmother. past winners: cotton night gowns, handmade scarf, crocheted dishcloths, frozen beer mugs. i need some new suggestions.

throw a dog a bone!

ps- the completion of this project puts me at 51 finished objects for 2007.

16 November 2007

"free" knitting

royal llama silki will apologize up front for my photo quality of late. leopard print means indoor pictures. indoor pictures mean i have worked away all the daylight. sorry folks.


sometimes knitting doesn't cost money, and two of my projects fit into that group right now. most of us do a needlecraft for the pleasure of the activity. it is nice to have the final product, but it is the activity we enjoy, or we would just go out and buy scarves and sweaters.

right now i am getting to knit on a beautiful luxury fiber--Plymouth's Royal Llama Silk. (60% llama, 40% silk) it is an absolute delight to knit with. you see it worked up in the grey scarf... it is a store model for the shop. we need more models of "manly" scarves, and this yarn is perfect for men's knits.

it is warm and soft, but the fabric is remarkably light and feels very strong wearing despite the lovely hand. the tweedy texture is beautiful and makes this yarn eye catching while remaining subtle. it looks best in either a plain fabric or knitted up into a bigger texture or cables. that is why i think it would be great for men's knits... nice plain or in a masculine texture or combination of rich colors. the particular color i am knitting up is called "Agate".

garter loop scarf
obviously because i won't be keeping this scarf, i didn't pay for the yarn, and i will be financially rewarded for my efforts. what a treat to be compensated for knitting with such lovely stuff!

my second unfunded project is a garter stitch loop-through scarf. you pull the little tails through the loops created in the ribbed section and it looks like a flirty version of an ascot.... sorta.

this is the Blue Sky Alpaca Sportweight that i frogged last week. who knew it would find love so soon? me! because i like to give a nice holiday gift, and if i spent that money more than a year ago, it feels practically free. i need to pick this little project up again because time slows for no one.

can you believe i don't actually like knitting scarves? yeah. that's me. a hater. but i will soon have more exciting things on the horizon. pictured bellow we have the swatch/1st sleeve for my Gathered Pullover knit in Berroco Ultra Alpaca (the yummy color is pea soup mix. i love pea soup!) and two skeins of 50% off Mountaincolors Bearfoot in the Goldrush colorway that will one day be sportweight knee socks.

the goldrush color kills me. i love it. it reminds me of my grandparents' living room from my childhood. every single color was in that room. from the crazy couch and amber glass hanging lamp to the pea green carpet and the strange ripple stitch 70s afghan... all of them are represented, and i will get to wear those colors as sock. awesome!

15 November 2007

hat-o-rama part three

you weren't expecting a hat-o-rama part three were you?

neither was i, but then again no one ever expects to be homeless one day, so it really does make sense. charity needle work, that is.... i dug into my "stash" last night and became the Andy Warhol of crochet to make hats for a charitable giving project my knitting BFF (the lovely CG!) is leading that will provide handmade warm accessories to women at a local homeless shelter this holiday season.

i started by going through my scarf pile. i have made more scarves than god ever intended one woman not to wear. those that i made and never wore (4!!) went in the bag. next went two hats, including the Center Square hat i knit in a silk/wool blend and know i won't wear because i can point out too many minor mistakes in the stranding.

next i pulled out all my super-chunky yarn and a big old crochet hook and went to town. the rust yarn was free to me. the grass green was left from a gift. the lemongrass green was something i was having buyers remorse on, but then this project came up! i still have a full skein of rust and a full skein of lemongrass, so i hope i can either whip up three more hats or maybe dive into some speed stix scarves.

i also have a cabled scarf going in the rust that is 37" long. my goal is to get it to 55" so i can include it as well. when it was just one more scarf for me... the girl with way too many... i had little motivation to keep it going. now that it is for someone else who will really need it this winter, i think those nice thick warm cables are a worthwhile use of my time.

you will also notice in the side bar that i finished the mittens from the class i was teaching. i will try to get a picture.

12 November 2007

crisis averted

i am pleased to report that my downstream swap pal did in fact get her package. and she liked it! yay!

that being said, i don't know if i will do more swaps. this is not because of the ladies involved (they were great) but because the mailing and worrying and finger crossing involved. i also don't think i can devote the proper time to really using the swaps to full advantage for making new pals and such. i am all about my 2 new pals, but i really only had the time to get to know 2 people out of the more than 50 people involved in this swap.

i'm lame.
i mean, i am this way about ravelry too. it is neat and all, but i log on maybe every 10 days. i'm even worse with my crochet me account.

log cabin sock 2all this being said... i have a "casual" swap to introduce soon. stay tuned.

and just to show i really am making progress on the holiday gifts....

my father's second sock! yes, that is a turned heel you see. very much so. it is just begging for a gusset. i plan to give it one tonight at my stitch'n'bitch.

11 November 2007

happy days are here again

so Nanda pointed out in the comments....

the TSA page now says that knitting needles and crochet hooks are permitted on flights.


just to be safe, the next time i travel with serious needles, i am brining a print out of the page saying they are a go.

not really, but sometimes.

every so often i sit and wish i was a man. never for any good reason, and i certainly am happy to be a gal (even with everything that comes along with that).

this week i found 3 reasons why it is great to be a guy.... or at least a woman who is bigger than me (i'm around 5'5" and almost a buck 25).

1. wingtips with skull design in the toe. i love! sadly, with this one i would need to be both a man and a rich one at that if i wanted to wear these babies.

2. Jodi Greene's sweater design Durrow.... entirely drool worthy and an impossible (well, more like just improbable) dream since the smallest size is almost 8 inches bigger than me. i may need to work on converting my father to sweater wearing. but look at those cabled sleeves! ah, me!

3. Rowan's newest beautiful offering... Knitting for Him: 27 Classic Projects to Keep Him Warm. there is argyle in this book that breaks my heart and cardigans that makes me want to cry with jealously. when BossLady asked me if the book is really that good, i told her it is good enough to make me reconsider my anti-marriage position. (or again with the retraining of my father to be a sweater wearer.)

these things plus the ability to open jars and not get cat-called on the street... ahh, perchance to dream!

things i love, and not so much....

cupcakewe'll start with the love.

1. 101 Designer One Skein Wonders.
not to be confused with the lame book One Skein Wonders. i am talking about the sequel. i love it. first book... meh. this one, yeah! i am already 1/3 of the way through the first project i am making from it, and let me say that it is an excellent use of my frogged Blue Sky Alpaca.

my only negative remark on this book is that the art direction makes me sad. it is designed to be very cutesy, which limits the audience, i think. it looks like a teenybopper book, but in reality it has good projects for many tastes.... even if the colors are garish. use your imagination and you too will love.

both of these one skein-ers are by Judith Durant, who also put together Never Knit Your Man a Sweater... maybe she is my hero of the week. well, my sorta hero. maybe.

2. etsy.who doesn't love etsy?
i am in such yarn lust right now. sock yarns from etsy will be my undoing. because i am a hopeless romantic. and i love pink flamingos.

3. the crocheted cupcake pattern pictured above. it is by lionbrand. the pattern is adorable. the yarn it is associated with directly....

now the "not so much".

1. Cupcake. this is the latest yarn coming out of The House That Fun Fur Built. i have come to know my yarns and my good substitutes in the last few months. this one is clearly a knock off of Mission Falls 1824 Cotton and Sweaterkits CottonLicious

2. seaming. none of us like it, and we all have to do it. tonight i seamed my Manos Project. well, 1/2 to 3/4 of it. it is blocking out right now, and the rest gets seamed maybe tomorrow night if the wool is dry.

09 November 2007

free at last, free at last

black beaniefive hats in four weeks and i need a little break from headgear.

i stayed up later than i should have last night finishing this baby for my friend R. can't you tell by the picture? i am tired, not tragic. although i do have a tempting caption on the tragique side...

My beanie is black, and so is my soul.


i'm not doing the full project breakdown on this darling because....

1. it is a black beanie. it doesn't have a name.
2. i made it up as i went.
3. it is crocheted in stash yarn from a mysterious time and place without a tag. it is a wool/acrylic blend by feel.
4. i can't get too attached because i am thinking it is 50/50 as to whether of not R. will wear it. for a man with limited fashion sense, he sure is picky. i think he will have wished i knit a hat instead of crocheted it. but why knit? his wife knits, so i should make him something she can't.

i love R. so don't give me that look. i just am being realistic about the fact that if there is anyone on my list that i didn't match the perfect project to the person... it is R.

this year even my father's projects are perfect! this rarely happens. he loves that i make him things, but he doesn't wear them all the time. i think he's going to really dig what i made (am making!!! eeek!!) for him.

now that i am down one, i am trying to decide what to do next in the holiday game plan. regarding my sidebar fondly i see mittens that i will be finishing in class next tuesday. the staggered rib scarf doesn't have a due date. manos project is at the finishing stage. log cabin socks... long way to go.

so socks.
and do i start my last crochet project? or my last scarf? tough call.

froggin' and dreamin'

see that Unfinished Object?

yep. that one.

no more. i decided to frog it. it has been sitting in the space between my wall and my bookcase for over a year. now i am back to pretty yarn

i knew when i started it with the pretty new yarn that it was never meant to be, but i kept working on it right through the tech rehearsals i was crocheting it in.

i was talked into buying the yarn by someone who really didn't know anything about crochet gauge. they sold me 4 skeins of Blue Sky Alpaca's 100% alpaca, sport weight yarn. i knew it was too lightweight, but i let myself be convinced. $40 later, i have 4 skeins of yarn that aren't really me, and i still have no crocheted skully bag to show for it.

oh, well.
i don't even really like making bags all that much.
and i think 440 yards of really pretty sport weight yarn (that just isn't me) could finds its way into some gifts for people. for now it will ruminate in my stash.

i am starting to have a stash.
a lot of skein ends, yarns people have given me, extra balls left after a project, etc. and sock yarn, which doesn't count as "stash" per se. because, you know... i am 100% sure it will one day be made into socks (or gifted away to other sock knitters). and i only really have about 4-5 pair ahead right now.

i need to clean out or use up.
that is my plan after the 1st of the year. i go on a yarn diet AND clean out what i have. i am allowing myself to buy yarn for one sweater to knit myself after the holidays, however. it is tight fitting, short sleeved, and will only cost about $50. not bad.

i have thrown in the towel on another project as well. i was crocheting a pair of socks this summer. i decided i don't like them. they feel funny on. the work hurts my hands, and i would rather knit mini socks or a pair of ankle socks out of the remaining yarn. i'm not frogging the crocheted sock. it will serve as a reminder so i don't get a wild hair and try to make them again.

this bring my number of UFOs to 3. my Rowan Calmer socks (50%). my Gedifra Fashion Trend Fino Stripe crochet skirt (start over). and my chunky cabled scarf (55%). UFOs are different than my WIP--which are all holiday gifts and one store model.

on a tangential note....
tonight i was gifted a book i have been coveting. someone knows how much i love argyle socks, and now i desperately want to knit myself a pair. this does not bode well for my stash getting smaller or my other sock yarns getting knit.

05 November 2007

poor charming billy

Oh, where have you been,
Billy Boy, Billy Boy?
Oh, where have you been,
Charming Billy?
I have been to seek a wife,
She's the joy of my life,
She's a young thing
And cannot leave her mother.
Can she make a cherry pie,
Billy Boy, Billy Boy?
Can she make a cherry pie,
Charming Billy?
She can make a cherry pie,
Quick as a cat can wink an eye,
She's a young thing
And cannot leave her mother.

it looks like i'll never catch a husband. (ha.) i tried to make the treats i posted about from the AntiCraft.... and had only marginal success. there is something about me and pie-crust-like-things that doesn't agree. i think the crust knows i hate it. or that i am not a huge fan of eating pie to begin with.

no one tell my grandmother. she'll be very disappointed and i will have to hear the story all over again about how my cousin baked a blueberry pie for her father-in-law on his birthday and what a great success that was.

and then i will have to explain to her why i have not made a pie success story out of myself.


a day of rest

i was released from the show for today. my brave and fearless leader hopes she won't be in need of any more of my services. as much as i enjoy hanging with my pal K-G, i am tired, and this day off has done me good.

i crocheted a whole holiday gift, finished 80% of another knitted gift, and had the first read of a new project this evening.

i am tired, i may be catching the evil cold that has been floating around, and the pal ale at my side makes me want to crawl into bed.

don't be too impressed with the speed at which i crocheted said gift. i was using a super bulky yarn and a size "Q" hook. the swatch pictured is all you will get to see of it for another month because this is a present for one of my girlfriends who is a blog reader. (now that i have all of your attention.... ha!)

i am a little stressed about getting all of my gifts finished. i have assigned myself 16 projects for a total of 10 people. i have completed 9 items. i am in progress on 3. i have bought the yarn and planned out another 3, and i have 1 that i know what class of item it will be, but the pattern and yarn have not been selected.

of these outstanding items, 2 are crochet projects. 4 are knits. and 1 is... well... still, undecided.

there is a distinct possibility that 2 projects may fall off the list, which is good because i would be closer to my goal (and i would cut out both a colorwork and a cabled project) but it is also bad because it would mean i am still cranky with that person.

boo on people making me cranky. don't do it--you will get a store purchased gift.

speaking of gifty things.... my swap pal is yet to inform me that she has received her package. i am getting worried. if i don't hear anything by tomorrow evening, i will email my hostess.

03 November 2007

static transmission

kitty is off trying to make some bank. this is accomplished by helping a friend get her beast of a show through tech. there will be very little knitting and even less of an update, i am sad to say. we all have to make sacrifices.

but for now, know that there is a new AntiCraft edition out. as i have said in the past, there isn't much crafty i want to make... even though i am glad to know these things are being made by someone, somewhere. i do however, want these delicious treats featured in the current issue.

no time to make them at this moment, damnitall. i will marry the person who presents them to me in my hour of tech-related need. failing that... i would at least be their friend forever.