June 30, 2004

Sex and the City and Sex and the Knitty

I had a night full of sex. I got Amy's email about the new Knitty going live just as I was heading upstairs to watch the last disk of the first part of the last season of Sex and the City. I immediately rushed to the site to ooh, ahh and giggle over the new designs.

Kate Gilbert's Mon Petit Chou struck me as particularly (insert Samantha's nasal tone here) fabulous. I wrote to her right away to tell her I loved it and also complain lament that it was not written for those of us who are larger up top. She wrote back to me like a shot that I could add a repeat if needed and that she could help me if I ran into trouble. Is that service or what?

I really like this issue of Knitty because while it had some of the patterns I imagined it would, it didn't have any of the ones I was fearing. I don't think I'll be casting on the 400 stitches to make Hush any time soon but I think it's a very sweet pattern. 302 Calories is a very witty design--and it's knit with chopsticks.1930 also appeals to me a great deal but, again, it's not for my body.

So I really want to try Mon Petit Chou. Now if only I could get my butt to look like this.

June 29, 2004


A new knitalong that I may join.

The bucket-o-chic to end all bucket-o-chics.

The new Interweave Knits for fall is chock full of great looking projects. The spring issue didn't have anything that grabbed me. I cannot wait to make several of these fall projects.

The Purlygirls have their own home on the web now. **Updated Link**

June 27, 2004

Rosy, Scrappy and Baby Makes Three

Rosy has been complete for a while. At last a photo.

I still don't have a pin for it. I held it closed with an earring that was in my desk drawer.

The scrap sweater continues to grow.

Sweater or Bust

I'd like to incorporate a little waist shaping I think. I'm going to bring it to Purlygirls tomorrow night and get a little advice on the decrease pattern.

I finished the Baby Broadripples too. A reader was very sweet and sent me some leftover Elann Esprit in the color I needed. It was the perfect amount for the second sock.

The computer mouse is for scale.

I started the sugar bowl for the Fiesta tea set today while watching the kids play at the mall. I won't bother to show you a picture of the off-white circle.

Have a great week!

June 26, 2004

What I've Been Doing

I got about two inches of the Waving Lace sock done at the park on Friday. I was pretty impressed that I got anything done while watching three boys (playdate) at a wading pool.

I'm going to make the fiesta sugar bowl next.

The scrap raglan is also coming along nicely.

I taught my first class today at the grand opening of The Fiber Gallery. I did a mini felted bag class. It was a free drop-in class. I got two students and it all went really well.

June 23, 2004

Scrap Happy

After staring at my scrap pile for a week or so I got inspired. I just tore into them and started a top-down raglan a la Glampyre. It's a lot harder to plan this with no gauge. I'm using a variety of yarns and getting roughly 4.25 stitches to the inch but each section is a little different. It's a lot of fun so far. I cast on yesterday in the afternoon and couldn't put it down all night. I'm almost to the underarms.

June 21, 2004

Knitting Along

While at Purlygirls tonight a fellow knitter said to me, "How many knit alongs are you in right now?"
I'm making Waving Lace socks for the Lace Along.
I just finished the Cloverleaf Rib Socks for the Six Sox Knitalong (the next project won't be announced for another month).
I made 5 afghan squares for the Afghanalong(wanted to make more but was overtaken by the urge to knit sweaters).
I have the yarn but haven't started the Rogue-Along.
I'm making the Candy Sam for the Candyalong.
I want to make a top-down raglan for the Scrapalong.
I want to make a Bottoms Up! BOC for the Bottoms Up Bucket Knitalong.
I signed up today for the Tea Party knitalong.
Hmmm...I guess I like to knit along.

Here's the first cup for the Tea Party blocking on a beer bottle.

I also finished the back of the Candy Sam and Rosy is complete. I'll try to get a photo up soon but I really don't feel like wearing wool right now.

June 20, 2004

Call a Medic!

I have contracted an acute case of startitis. These are the projects that I started yesterday.

On the left in light blue is some Classic Cotton for making the Fiesta tea set from the latest Interweave Knits. I stalled out because I don't have any size three double points. The there's the dark sage green Kidsilk Haze for making a small lace scarf from the Vogue on the Go! Scarves Two book. I stalled out after about four rows because I had either added a stitch accidentally or never had the right number to begin with. Darn that fuzzy dark yarn! I couldn't see a thing. Plus with the heat I was worried that I was going to felt the yarn with my sweaty hands. So I moved on to the red and black poppy from Magknits. I knit it in Lamb's Pride Worsted. I wasn't crazy about how the pattern was written so I stopped to rewrite it for myself (after ripping out two petals). I'm also not crazy about how she wrote the bobble pattern. Mine looks pretty lame. And then there are the missing construction diagrams... But I finished knitting it and now it needs to be felted. Lastly, just before bed, I began casting on for the Waving Lace socks from the Spring IK. What's my problem?

Friday and Saturday were knitting-filled days for me. On Friday I spent the morning at a friend's house knitting and catching up while the kids played. Then in the afternoon I had a knitting moms playdate. A group of us got together for a few hours at the park and sat in the shade and knit while the kids played. Ah. A great way to spend the afternoon. I also completed my first crocheted object ever. I made a flower from the instructions on Georgia's blog.

On Saturday I had made plans with some Purlygirls (including Amy and her sweet little baby) to go to the sidewalk sale at Acorn Street. We looked around a lot but no one walked away with many bargains. There was lots of discontinued colors in Debbie Bliss yarns and several Jo Sharp yarns but nothing that worked for any of my current want-to-make projects. If I wasn't broke I probably would have picked up enough Merino Aran for a sweater. Oh well. We moved up the block for a lovely lunch at Queen Mary. We all had good food and then split a HUGE piece of a really delicious coconut cake.

A few of us wanted to continue knitting after lunch and someone suggested Arosa Cafe. I wanted to go because I know the owner but hadn't been there yet. It also happens to be next door to Tricoter. Well Tricoter was having a big sale too. Everything was 25% off and some items were 50% off. Now Tricoter has really, really high prices so the 25% pretty much brought the prices down to normal retail. I did get a skein of Kidsilk Haze (the sage green above for the scarf) from the clearance bin. I also bumped into another knitter I know (Sandy who has been working on and off on the Koigu kimono for two years--it's amazing). So she joined us at the Cafe. We sat in air-conditioned comfort, drank iced coffee and knit the afternoon away.

Wes had a screening to attend last night which gave me the time to knit and reknit my felted flower and start all these other projects. I needed a break from all the 2x2 ribbing in the Candy Sam. The back is almost done. But, man, does it go slowly.

Today we have nothing on out schedule. At all. I can't recall the last time this has happened. So we are loafing around and letting the kids watch some tv before heading to our local wading pool--with my knitting, of course. Have a great day everyone!

June 17, 2004

FOs and More

I finished the Cloverleaf Rib socks for the Six Sox Knitalong.

Click to see the clover detail.

These were fun and easy to knit. I still enjoyed Broadripple a little more. Since I tend to knit socks while on the run, waiting in line at the grocery store, at the zoo, etc., it's nice to have just a two row pattern. I kept worrying I was going to get off pattern with the Cloverleaf. I don't think I really did but I was perpetually concerned.

And today I finished seaming my cursed baby sweater. I still need buttons. I loathe this sweater. It's full of mistakes from four years ago. The seaming is appalling. And, worst of all, there's no one to wear it. Should I hang on to it and give it to a grandchild in thirty years. Should I donate it? Should I burn it to purge it of the evil spirits that obviously inhabit it? Ah, knowing me it will be another two years until I sew on the buttons.

Don't be fooled. It's looks innocent but this sweater is pure evil.

And here's a progress shot of the back of the Candy Sam.

I've mentioned before that my husband is a genius of film, snowflakes and eggplants. But yesterday he became a genius of cake. My six year old wanted to create a Booger Boy cake recipe. I helped him turn his list of ingredients into an actual recipe (he was not that far off) and handed it off to my husband while I went to the monthly meeting of the Seattle Knitter's Guild.* I came home to this:

Here's the real Booger Boy for a comparison:

Not bad, eh?

*Kristin Spurkland was speaking about her work as a designer. It was my first meeting. It was nice and informative but hot as hell! And it was only in the mid-70s yesterday. I'm afraid I'll faint if I go in July.

June 16, 2004

Roll Call

Knitting projects, report in!

Rosy: Still pinned to the blocking board as pictured below. Ends need to be woven in and collar needs to be finessed a bit. I also need to give it a good and proper blocking.

Cloverleaf Socks: I'm on the toe decreases on the second sock. I expect that these bad boys will be kitchenered and complete by the end of the day tomorrow.

Sam: The back is nearly at the armhole decreases. I keep telling myself that I'm done with the biggest part. It will get smaller, it will get smaller, it will...

Birch: Two rows complete. Don't hold your breath.

GE Cardi: In a ball somewhere waiting to be seamed. Pink, fluffy yarn still captive in Canada.

Ara Poncho: One half done. I've cast on for the second half and knit about two rows. Hard to get worked up about a heavy wool poncho with summer around the corner.

And that's the whole deal. Maybe I can get inspired and knock Rosy and the socks off the list by the end of the weekend. Heck, I might even seam that sweater. But don't hold your breath.

June 13, 2004

I'll Do It Too

Achebe, Chinua - Things Fall Apart
Agee, James - A Death in the Family
Austen, Jane - Pride and Prejudice
Baldwin, James - Go Tell It on the Mountain
Beckett, Samuel - Waiting for Godot
Bellow, Saul - The Adventures of Augie March
Brontë, Charlotte - Jane Eyre
Brontë, Emily - Wuthering Heights
Camus, Albert - The Stranger
Cather, Willa - Death Comes for the Archbishop
Chaucer, Geoffrey - The Canterbury Tales
Chekhov, Anton - The Cherry Orchard

Chopin, Kate - The Awakening
Conrad, Joseph - Heart of Darkness
Cooper, James Fenimore - The Last of the Mohicans
Crane, Stephen - The Red Badge of Courage
Dante - Inferno
de Cervantes, Miguel - Don Quixote
Defoe, Daniel - Robinson Crusoe
Dickens, Charles - A Tale of Two Cities
Dostoyevsky, Fyodor - Crime and Punishment
Douglass, Frederick - Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass
Dreiser, Theodore - An American Tragedy
Dumas, Alexandre - The Three Musketeers
Eliot, George - The Mill on the Floss
Ellison, Ralph - Invisible Man
Emerson, Ralph Waldo - Selected Essays
Faulkner, William - As I Lay Dying
Faulkner, William - The Sound and the Fury
Fielding, Henry - Tom Jones
Fitzgerald, F. Scott - The Great Gatsby
Flaubert, Gustave - Madame Bovary
Ford, Ford Madox - The Good Soldier
Goethe, Johann Wolfgang von - Faust

Golding, William - Lord of the Flies
Hardy, Thomas - Tess of the d'Urbervilles
Hawthorne, Nathaniel - The Scarlet Letter
Heller, Joseph - Catch 22
Hemingway, Ernest - A Farewell to Arms
Homer - The Iliad
Homer - The Odyssey

Hugo, Victor - The Hunchback of Notre Dame
Hurston, Zora Neale - Their Eyes Were Watching God
Huxley, Aldous - Brave New World
Ibsen, Henrik - A Doll's House
James, Henry - The Portrait of a Lady
James, Henry - The Turn of the Screw
Joyce, James - A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man

Kafka, Franz - The Metamorphosis
Kingston, Maxine Hong - The Woman Warrior
Lee, Harper - To Kill a Mockingbird
Lewis, Sinclair - Babbitt
London, Jack - The Call of the Wild
Mann, Thomas - The Magic Mountain
Marquez, Gabriel García - One Hundred Years of Solitude (I'm reading it next for my book group)
Melville, Herman - Bartleby the Scrivener
Melville, Herman - Moby Dick
Miller, Arthur - The Crucible
Morrison, Toni - Beloved
O'Connor, Flannery - A Good Man is Hard to Find
O'Neill, Eugene - Long Day's Journey into Night
Orwell, George - Animal Farm

Pasternak, Boris - Doctor Zhivago
Plath, Sylvia - The Bell Jar
Poe, Edgar Allan - Selected Tales
Proust, Marcel - Swann's Way
Pynchon, Thomas - The Crying of Lot 49
Remarque, Erich Maria - All Quiet on the Western Front
Rostand, Edmond - Cyrano de Bergerac

Roth, Henry - Call It Sleep
Salinger, J.D. - The Catcher in the Rye
Shakespeare, William - Hamlet
Shakespeare, William - Macbeth
Shakespeare, William - A Midsummer Night's Dream
Shakespeare, William - Romeo and Juliet
Shaw, George Bernard - Pygmalion
Shelley, Mary - Frankenstein

Silko, Leslie Marmon - Ceremony
Solzhenitsyn, Alexander - One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich
Sophocles - Antigone
Sophocles - Oedipus Rex

Steinbeck, John - The Grapes of Wrath
Stevenson, Robert Louis - Treasure Island
Stowe, Harriet Beecher - Uncle Tom's Cabin
Swift, Jonathan - Gulliver's Travels
Thackeray, William - Vanity Fair
Thoreau, Henry David - Walden
Tolstoy, Leo - War and Peace
Turgenev, Ivan - Fathers and Sons

Twain, Mark - The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
Voltaire - Candide
Vonnegut, Kurt Jr. - Slaughterhouse-Five
Walker, Alice - The Color Purple
Wharton, Edith - The House of Mirth
Welty, Eudora - Collected Stories

Whitman, Walt - Leaves of Grass
Wilde, Oscar - The Picture of Dorian Gray
Williams, Tennessee - The Glass Menagerie
Woolf, Virginia - To the Lighthouse
Wright, Richard - Native Son

June 12, 2004

Quick Picture Update

Here's my progress on Cloverleaf.

I cast on and started knitting the second one during my seminar this morning.

Last night after dinner I cast on for a Baby Broadripple. I finished it late last night. It's cute as a bug's ear. Here it is with Cloverleaf to give you a sense of the size.

Unfortunately they take more yarn than I guessed. I had hoped to make a pair from my Broadripple leftovers. Once I finished this one I was left with enough yarn for only a quarter of a second sock. So if anyone has about 6-8 grams of Elann Esprit Print in color #9904 Summer Meadow, let me know. These are nice little gifts for people that you know who are having babies that you don't feel close enough to to make an entire sweater. They're quick, they're cute, they're inexpensive.

June 11, 2004

Clip 'N Save

Ann mentioned in my comments that she had some tips on Birch in her blog. I found her wonderful and hilarious notes. I have already printed them out.

I finished one Cloverleaf today except for grafting the toe. I am feeling too lazy to drag out the camera right now so you'll just have to take my word for it.

Today was very hectic and the rest of my weekend will be worse. Don't be surprised if I don't resurface for a few days.

And from the WTF files...an invention for parents too hip or stupid to use towels, or cloth diapers, or a rag, or any sense at all. (Via Daily Candy)

June 9, 2004

I Got The Call

Yesterday morning at 7:20 am I got the call. The call all knitters dream of. Schoolhouse Press called to tell me that there is an opening at Knitting Camp and that I can go! I'm still trying to make plane reservations and find child care but from July 7-11th I will be in the middle of nowhere in Wisconsin knitting with Meg Swansen! I can hardly believe it. To prepare I've put every Meg Swansen or Elizabeth Zimmermann book and video on hold at the library. I must study.

In far less interesting news I have finished one half of the Dale Ara poncho. I'm also about halfway through the foot on my first Cloverleaf sock. Ah, who cares? I'm going to camp!

June 8, 2004

Don't Hold Your Breath

Thanks for all the encouraging words about Birch. Don't check back too often for progress because it will probably take me the better part of a decade to finish it.

Rosy is finally seamed. I'm not crazy about my seaming job. The shoulders in particular still don't look great. I gave it a bit of steam and blocked it a bit. I still need to weave in the ends. The worst part was I couldn't watch Nowhere in Africa because it's subtitled and it's the only film I have right now from Netflix. I had to watch regular tv. It was awful. I love my ReplayTV. I haven't had to sit through commercials in a very long time. Man, TV sucks, doesn't it?

I finally picked up my poncho long enough to finish the first half. I also worked a few inches on my first Cloverleaf Rib sock. I'm suddenly feeling like I have too many projects going at once and I can't decide what to work on when. My plan right now is to keep my sock in my purse, Sam for semi-mindless knitting, Birch for challenging knitting and the poncho for absolutely brainless knitting. The GE Cardi is still waiting for its fuzzy pink yarn to make its way here from Canada along with my cotton angora. Some day, some day. I will try to seam the Cardi though bit by bit so it won't feel like such a drag.

June 6, 2004

Maybe Lace Knitting Isn't for Me

I was feeling tired of 2x2 ribbing after spending the last few days working on the back of the Candy Sam. I was craving something different. I worked a bit on my Cloverleaf Sock. But still I was feeling the pull to start something new. I started laying out the Koigu I got in the grab bags from Patternworks. I'm thinking a stripey top-down raglan with short sleeves.

What do you think?

Then the Knitalong list announced that the next project would be a shawl--any shawl at all (that has a kind of Dr. Seuss feel to it). I knew immediately that the time had come to face casting on for Birch. Yes, casting on 299 stitches of Kidsilk Haze has stopped me dead in my tracks on more than one occasion. But tonight I was determined. The problem was I did not know which cast on the folks at Rowan refer to as the "lace cast on." I spent an hour online trying to figure it out. I finally sent emails off to Lisa and Marti. Lisa straightened me out immediately by pointing out that the cast on is explained in the pattern book. How did I miss this? It's just a knitted cast on. Marti also got back to me to explain the same thing. So I did it. I cast on 299 stitches. I put on House of Sand and Fog and I worked on Birch for 126 dreary, depressing minutes. I knit one and a half rows. Which makes me wonder if this is the project for me?

I know, I know. The rows only get shorter from here. If nothing else it has me motivated to get back to work on Sam.

I still haven't finished seaming and steaming Rosy. I was planning on having it ready for Purlygirls tomorrow night but it turns out I can't make it so there goes my motivation.

June 3, 2004

Mrs. Brown, You've Got a Lovely Daughter

I've got Herman's Hermits going through my head. We got hermit crabs today. These things are frickin' huge! The one in the front is the size of a lime and the one in the back is the size of a lemon. HUGE! My son got the Hermit's Haven for his birthday and the crabs just arrived today. The brochure said they've switched to larger, "hardier" crabs. See that little beach hut in the picture at Amazon? We took ours out because our crabs are both bigger than the hut!

Freakishly large crabs aside, I have been working on Sam today. I have about 30 rows or so of ribbing done and it looks like it will be a cute sweater.

I worked at The Fiber Gallery tonight. A few Purlygirls stopped in to check the place out and to join in the project class. The 'Girls and I went to the Essential Bakery and knit some more once I got off work too. Thanks for all the moral support! I'm at The Fiber Gallery every Thursday night from 4-8. Stop in and say hi.

June 2, 2004

Two Hours

That is how long it took to attach the second sleeve of Rosy in a way that I could live with. Two freaking hours. I stitched. It looked awful. I ripped. I stitched. The yarn broke. I stitched. It looked awful. I ripped. The yarn...for two hours. Tomorrow I will attempt to stitch the side and sleeve seams. Light a candle for me.

The Candy Sam is underway. (For those of you keeping track, Sam is the fourth sweater from the Cotton Angora book that I'm knitting. I'm still waiting on the damned yarn for Mia.)I've officially joined the Candy Along. Apparently I've also joined the Scrap-a-long. It's a cool idea but I don't think I have enough scraps yet.

Oh, yes. I'm famous.

June 1, 2004

Photo Time

Here is the wretched photo with my Buckwheat hair and miserable expression chopped off. After showing the photos to Wes we decided that the hair travesty must have been caused by my pulling off my other sweater to have him quickly take the pictures. Long story short, Shapely's done.

I had a meeting for the Stitch 'n Bitch bookclub tonight. We're a knitting book group. Our first book was The Secret Life of Bees. I read it for another book group and thought it was pretty mediocre. We had a great time chatting and knitting and getting to know one another. The bakery where we met is where I meet for two other groups. They always give me free stuff. Twice it was chocolates (I mean really good chocolates), last time it was bread and tonight they gave us all pastries to take with us. I got Wes and the boys croissants for breakfast. What could be better than free pastries?

I finished the last sleeve for Rosy and started stitching her up as soon as I got home. I have the shoulders seamed and half of one sleeve attached. I love the Classic Elite '03 Tweed but it sucks for seaming. The slubby parts get caught when you try to pull the yarn through and the yarn breaks if you pull too hard. It's not a great combination. The seams on Rosy are a little odd too since it's knit side to side. At least the yarn camouflages weird seams nicely.

I started casting on for Sam in Bandolino in a cotton candy pink. Perhaps I should join the Candyalong?

No Shapely Photos

I need to retake the Shapely Tank photos. Wes, while snapping the pictures, neglected to mention that my hair looked I had spent the night in a dumpster. No lie. Far too humiliating to post here.

I had another great knitting day yesterday. We had a Purlygirl family picnic during the day. I spent about four hours at a nearby park knitting with friends while the kids played. Then I had the usual Purlygirl knit-together last night. I hoped I would finish the last sleeve for Rosy but I still have about 40 rows to go.