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August 10, 2009

Coming Up For Air

Maybe I'm finally coming up for air. I was reluctant to share all the details with what I was involved in because I just didn't know how things were going to work out and I was so thrilled and honored that I just wanted to focus on what I needed to do and do the best possible job I could.


I was invited to be a teacher at Sock Summit '09. The jaw is still on the floor. Sock Summit just wrapped up. I can't even move off the couch. It was an amazing experience and an opportunity I will never forget. The teachers I was working with are the kind of women we all want to grow up to be. They aren't just good at knitting. They are good at everything.


I'm inspired way beyond knitting. I'm just inspired to do everything well and to explore more and more of the world around me.


I noticed yesterday that Sock Summit came up in Yahoo's top search terms. This should give muggles* (non-knitters) something to think about.



Notice the terms we come between. There is something very appropriate about that.


There is a lot to share about the summit. Especially the difficulties the brilliant women who whipped it together faced. I can't help but be interested in their story since I think it reflects the general experience of women in business. More later. When I can function and think and link.


*Thanks to Stephanie for bringing this term to our knitting culture. It SO fits.

March 19, 2007

Project Dissatisfaction

I'm being very sulky and spoiled about what I knit right now. I think I'm reading too many blogs where knitters are creating these glorious cabled sweaters in a couple weeks!


I want to work on the Hazy Cable sweater but the size seems wrong and quite frankly I hate flat knitting. I'm just bored by it for some reason! And lets face it, a sweater for me is no small undertaking. I'm fluffy, ample, whatever. I'm a lot of stitches around. So while I desperately want to crank out the lovely stuff for me, I don't seem to have the patience!


I tried to work the Bernat cardi but the yarn is terrible to work with! It has no give and it is sticky. I love how it feels in the ball. Soft, cushy and lots of texture. It is machine washable and dryable and I need a few knock-around sweaters like that. I have numerous dogs and I'm quite hard on clothes. So maybe I'll just force myself to do an inch a day. it will take forever but at least it will be done eventually. No pictures though. Too depressing.


I really wanted to do the Hazy Cable sweater in the round and since I haven't progressed far I think I'm going to re-cast on and try again. It may not be the right size but then I'll make it a gift. I haven't any idea how to alter a flat sweater pattern to on the round. Any suggestions, resources I can go to? I know there is a book out there on how to do it I just didn't jot down the name of the book.


One positive note. I re-did the Suki bag and am back on track. Cascade is lovely to work with and I am for sure going to do a sweater for one of my brothers in this. Even some of the same colors I'm using for my bag. They are wonderful. It does kind of suck that the brother I want to knit if for lives in Arizona and will hardly ever get to wear it!


shamrocks


I forgot I had shamrocks to share for St. Patrick's day. I hope everyone had a happy one.

December 18, 2005

Somebody stop me!

We have had some very chilly weather around here which makes the knitting habit so lovely. Not only do I get to sit around and play with warm fiber but I have a selection of delicious knitted goodies to choose from when I step outside.


How cold has it been? Well, the river is starting to freeze. I've never seen that happen. But here is the waterfall:


frozen waterfall


And here is a show of all the ice around the beach and floating along the surface of the river:



We are supposed to have an ice storm here so keep your fingers crossed. I am stocked up on people and dog food and have tons of water and firewood. I think I'm good to go. I'll just knit and wrap presents and endlessly use this as an excuse for why gifts and cards are late. Milk it as much as possible!


Looking at the knitting front. I was pawing through one of my storage containers and started to get extremely irritated with all the abandoned projects I found. I'm continuously amazed that I have to keep buying needles but it is because I leave projects on the needles (in some demented denial that I'm not going to pick it right back up again) and then stash the project only to be uncovered a year later while looking for a stash of chunky yarn for baby sweaters (the deadline is drawing close, I've resorted to big yarn and big needles to make it go faster!)


This is what I found in just two storage containers:




(clockwise from lower left: fuzzy Christmas scarf, ruffly baby had, Christmas stocking started last year, hat, shawl, hat ruffles scarf, pair of socks, lace scarf, mock ribbed scarf from last Christmas also, pair of baby socks, pair of socks, scarf)


Knitterly friends of mine often ask how many projects I have going at once. Little do they know the level of my sickness!


By the way, my solution to this horrific site? Cram them all into one bag and vow that once the holidays are over I will finish them or unravel them. I'm ignoring the fact that after the holidays I have six birthdays in the first three months of the year.


By the way, in defense of me, the ruffly pink baby hat was unraveled as the baby I was making it for originally is now three years old. I still have to make her something. I'm thinking something in chunky yarn...

March 08, 2005

How to work on an assignment without really trying

Simple, don't do it. Work on anything except the assignment. Work on your blog...


The more and more I think about working at the yarn shop the happier I am with that decision. Aside from doing something I love and loving what I do (which happens to be the motto of the yarn store) I'm a big believer in following the bread crumbs when they are laid out before you like this. When things are too easy you are supposed to go with the flow.


There is some discussion on other blogs today about variegated yarns and how they entertain us when we knit. This is just so true for me. Yarn has to sing and dance to hold my attention long enough for me to finish something. I refer to it as Knitting ADD. And I'm not trying to make fun of ADD or be patronizing. I really can't focus on what I'm knitting on if I don't have colors, textures, and even sizes changing. And I have to work on multiple projects at one time.


The variegated yarns hypnotize me as I watch the green loop pull through the purple loop and the fat fuzzy part of the yarn pooch out of a skinny, string like size part. The Melange yarn I'm knitting Hazy Cables with right now has a strand of silky boucle in it. It is variegated from ivory to a dark champagne color. And that is the strand I focus on. Who needs to meditate when you can watch a little string change colors!


I'm in the horrifying position today of being two projects less. I got some fun yarn that variegates from furry to not furry and I was going to do socks with these but there is no stretch to the yarn so I don't think it would make good socks. I guess I'll have to do a scarf or something.


Gedifra yarn


I also think that I should save money from my new job for a new digital camera, what do you think?

March 24, 2004

Definding theSimple Things in Life

I'm not a big fan of yarn snobbery. Actually, I'm not a big fan of snobbery in general. But I'll stick to yarn snobbery...and Nilla Wafers.

There is a lot of knitting in my family. I've seen fashion knitting with beautiful, expensive yarns and I've seen the Red Heart sweaters.

I have the beautiful, expensive sweaters and cherish them. I wear them on special occasions and I often take them out and admire them.

My Red Heart sweaters are long gone since they were the sweaters I received as a kid. My Mom must have done a good job impressing on us how much work went into them because I remember marveling over the stitches and appreciating the time my Grandmother put into them.

I see people curl their lip at Red Heart yarn and at acrylic yarn in general. I can never quite understand it. OK, it might not be your cup of tea and not what you want to use for your project. But those Red Heart sweaters gave as good as they got when we were kids and they looked cute.

My Grandmother was a skilled knitter and using inexpensive yarn never changed that.

So when I hear people mocking Red Heart I think, "Hey! It is a good, utilitarian product. When did that become distasteful?"

I was on a job interview once. With a well-known, popular, cooking website. I was being interviewed in a restaurant by two women and it was going really well. We had great conversations, I was really qualified for the position and I love cooking and food so I could bring something more to the job. Then they started mocking recipes their Moms had made. Simple stuff. One was a kind of trifle and the woman was laughing and bemoaning the fact that her Mom had "cheated" in making the trifle by using Nilla Wafers and vanilla pudding.

They started ripping on Nilla Wafers. Now I can't even remember the last time I bought Nilla Wafers but there isn't anything wrong with them! And a trifle of Nilla Wafers and vanilla pudding sounds pretty good! I sat there and listened to them knowing I shouldn't say anything. They were food snobs but, well, it was their business. But after a while I thought, "I have to be honest. I have to be who I am and that person doesn't think there is anything wrong with Nilla Wafers." So I spoke up. I defended Nilla Wafers.

I did not get the job.

And I was OK with that. Because I appreciate utilitarian things like Red Heart yarn and Nilla Wafers. Nothing wrong with them. I was always a little disgusted with the lifestyle shows that imply that derisive snobbery. I was going to do a cookbook for people on budgets. Both money and time budgets. No recipes that call for saffron and to prepare half of it the night before. Mine was going to show how to doll up Hamburger Helper or how you can jazz up that Top Ramen. Realistic tips.

All of this doesn't mean I don't appreciate rare and special things. Martha would probably approve of my lifestyle (yeah yeah, I've got the candles, nice linens, antiques, and I've made the "real" trifle). I just don't like the snobbery.

I'm well aware how many of my mistakes and learning is hidden behind beautiful, expensive yarn. I'll know I've truly become a skilled knitter when I can make something up in an inexpensive yarn. And let me tell you what! With seven dogs in my family and four cats, I have NO problem with inexpensive, acrylic yarn!

March 22, 2004

I May Be Stuck in a Rut

I have suspected for some time now that I was in a specific color phase. You know when you are attracted to the same color over and over? Bonne Marie of the fabulous Chicknits complained that she was stuck in Shrekville because she wanted to do everything in a bright pistachio. Now she is going pink.


I am currently going through a brown/blue phase. Note the Pebble Dash I gushed over yesterday. My first socks I did in a brown and blue stripe that I just love and wear all the time. And this came today:


Cotton yarn and pattern




I'm a little frightened that I forget I order things online almost right away. On one hand it is fun because it is like Christmas and I know I'll like the gift! On the other hand, I'm too young to forget like that! I got this beautiful mercerized cotton from elann.com along with a great cable pattern. Dancing Vines. Can you see what color the yarn is? Yep, brown and blue...


But look how pretty the sweater is! I hope the variegated yarn doesn't interfere with the cable pattern. If it does I can use it to make the basic ribbed pull over I have been wanting, talking about, and not knitting. You experts out there, can you do a cable sweater with a variegated yarn?


Dancing Vines sweater

March 21, 2004

The Planets are Aligned Once Again

I have more than one project I like again. Ahhhhh. I feel much better. I found an excuse to pick up a skein of yarn I have been coveting. Rowan Chunky Print in Pebble Dash. My fingers get so cold, especially sitting at the computer. Even in the summer (bad circulation I guess) so I decided I needed some fingerless gloves or wrist warmers. It doesn't seem like they would work but down vests work, right? So I found a Rowan pattern I have always loved and am whipping up my Crumbles (wrist warmers).


I love the color way of this yarn so much I'm pretty sure I'm going to succumb, sell the family farm, and get a tonage of it to make a bulky, loose, ribbed sweater for me that I have been wanting.


Chunky Print Pebble Dash



Pebble Dash


Delicious browns, tans, creams, greys, and blue greys. Pebble Dash is a good name. I have a thing for rocks so no wonder I'm attracted to it! And I absolutely adore yarn that varies in size. I love texture so much and stuff like this makes me happy!


Stitch n' Bitch was good. It always is. It was the one year anniversary of my LYS. So there was champagne and cake and I was good and had none. I just had a little herb tea. No sugar or white flour for me. Towards the end, Lisa, the owner of my LYS opened her doors to us stitch n' bitchers for a little sale. Thus helping me rationalize my impulse buy. I also got some more sock yarn because there were a couple colors I couldn't live without. My life is in danger of ending because of beautiful yarn quite often I'm afraid.


Our Stitch n' Bitch was held at Urban Eccentrics which is a very cool thrift shop and they were quite gracious in having us there. I wish they had a website for me to link to but I highly recommend a perusal if you are ever in downtown Vancouver, Washington.

March 20, 2004

Beating my Head Against the Wall

I have been wrestling with getting Movable Type running on this site so I'm not having to code all this HTML myself and it is just killing me! How have so many people managed to use it? It is not an easy install!!


So to break the tension with computer trials, I continue to knit. I finished up the Shapely Scarf (it is actually shaped weird but it drapes just right). Here is the lovely Sapphire modeling it for us this afternoon...


Sapphire modeling the Shapely Scarf


I forgot to talk about the Knitting Meet Up I was supposed to go to Wednesday night. That actually didn't work out. I drove all the way there (which was a hike, let me tell you!) and then when I finally found the coffee house there was no parking. Absolutely none! Six spaces in back which were full and construction and No Parking signs on all the side streets. It wasn't a nice enough neighborhood that I would park a few blocks away and walk. So after all that, I ended up just going home. Phooey! I'm not going to do that again!


My local LYS is having a Stitch n' Bitch tonight though so all is not lost. I think we are all working on a group project for a gift though so I probably won't get anything done on my projects. That is OK. I always end up having to rip out what I do at Stitch n' Bitches. I enjoy myself so much I just don't pay attention to the knitting!

March 17, 2004

St. Patrick's Day Knitting

Full day today with seeing off all my house guests and then attending a conference most of the day. But right after the conference I'm heading over to Fireside Coffee for a Knitting MeetUp. I don't know anyone but it should still be fun because knitty people are fun people.

Here is the yarn I got at Unraveled Yarns yesterday.

Argus and balls of Cascade

As you can see, my dog Argus is a yarn fan and wanted to check out what I got for my latest project. He never judges me for buying more yarn. Unlike my Mom who took one look at my big Space Saver bags and tried to tell me I can't buy anymore yarn. I noticed she forgot she said that when I was buying this yarn and included a couple cute novelty yarns for her own bag!

And that is what this Cascade yarn is for. I'm knitting up the Suki bag finally. I got this free pattern from Knitty, a phenomenal site with articles, patterns, etc. It is a "must bookmark" for knitters of any level.

This bag is going to be my beach bag for this summer. Hence the blues. I do still want either a fuzzy light blue (not furry) or a cream or white. I'm sure I have something in my stash I can dig out. I just had an image of myself going back and forth to the yarn store at the beach with my great felted beach knitting bag with little zips of color in all the beautiful blues.

March 14, 2004

Bugs and the Knitting Patch

As an update to the bug swallowing incident Friday, that same night I was in the kitchen pulling chicken out of the oven when the front door was opened briefly and a kamikaze moth came straight at my dish of chicken simmering in a lovely sauce.


You can guess the end. He dove in and expired in what must have been a mercifully quick death-by-boiling raspberry-chipotle-sauce. I scooped him out and served the chicken! Five second rule still applies...right?


I'm in a quagmire (or is it quandary?) about what to cast on next. True, I have several WIP but that's no fun! I have some great ideas for a felted purse. I need to spend a little time digging through my stash though to flesh out that design.


I for sure want to cast on another sock. Why not always have a sock project on the needles? They are so easy to knock out. But I'm torn between two choices. First is the beautiful Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock yarn in color #76 or "aslan."


Lorna's Laces Aslan yarn


Grandma wants a pair of these and who am I to make her wait? She wears the striped socks I made for her birthday even though they ended up a little wild for her style. These will stripe as they are the same yarn I used for my alien socks but the colorway is so neutral and soft I think it would just end up being really pretty.


The other choice is this glorious Opal Handpainted sock yarn. I was told it was new and I can't even find a color name or number on the label.


Opal Handpainted yarn


The CDC (crappy digital camera) doesn't do it justice. It is the most beautiful Autumn color palette. Not red at all but a rich rust and golden browns and purples. I can't even find another picture of it already up on a website to show you here so it must be fairly new. There is actually quite a bit of yarn here so I kind of wish I could think of something besides socks. Each ball has 425 meters but I'm not a small woman so there isn't enough to crank out a beautiful cardigan and I don't wear vests.


I'm working hard to get actual blog software running on this site rather than me and html so then I'll be able to ask for comments and votes on what I should do. For sure by next weekend.


Before I do anything I have to finish my graduate project today and then whip up a big anniversary dinner for my grandparents. That is why I need a knitting patch. Like the nicotine patch. I have to stop the cravings so I can get through non-knitting activities!