American Wool Series

Monday, December 31, 2007

New Years, New Mitts

I stayed up fairly late (for me) last night finishing up the increase sections of the Endpaper mitts. This has been my favorite project so far. I stepped out of my color comfort zone and am so happy I did. All I have left on the first one is to finish up the contrast ribbing on the thumb. The goal is to zip through the second one just as quickly so I have an FO for the New Year - I think it's a good way to start the year off, don't you? Second in line is the Tangled Yoke Cardigan which I started what seems like a long time ago (pre-holiday knitting era) and which I want to finish as soon as possible. It's difficult after knitting through so many small projects to tackle a big one but I've got some brand new O-wool burning a hole in my knitting bag for the Minimalist Cardigan. I've got sweater-lust big time and the only cure is to finish a couple off before it gets warm (ha!) in Seattle. Safe and Happy New Years to everyone! Cheers!

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Post-Christmas Funk

The last week has been somewhat of a rollercoaster ride. Christmas was great but taking my sister to the airport was hard followed by an even harder few days of work. The end of month/end of year push at work is unpleasant to say the least and coupled with returning from a short holiday with family... well, you get the idea. On the upside I picked up this rockin' Japanese knitting book at Kinokuniya and although I can't read Japanese there are some great charts and diagrams I can hopefully follow. I also got to get together with some of the gals from my knitting group (thanks Katie!) for a good block of group knitting time as our regular group won't meet until after New Years. There's nothing like four kinds of cheese and a pear cider to get you in the knitting zone. My endpaper mitts are moving right along and I should finish up the first one tomorrow (pictures I promise!) . Knitting is in high gear at chez moi as I'm trying to ignore the impending return of homework and forget that my older brother is in the hospital with a hopefully not-too-serious heart condition. Really, not so serious as it's possible my mom has the same one (as she found out through stroke-like symptoms this year) and it's treatable by medication. I'd like to ask for good thoughts his way, aim them toward the greater Wichita area, and a speedy recovery and return to his family in the New Year. So you see, I wasn't kidding about the rollercoaster ride but the knitting is keeping me in a wonderfully Zen state and really, that's all you can ask for in times like this.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Covet! Post-Christmas Edition

Knitting Motherlode
Originally uploaded by zombiegirl1
I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas with limited insanity and beaucoup delicious vittles. Rather than posting about the things I am in covet-envy for I thought I would post about gifts I received. My sister picked up Knitting Vintage Socks by Nancy Bush and I'm already drooling over all of the pretty patterns. I've got a yen for vintage items so this is perfect. In addition to that she threw in a couple of skeins of pretty pretty sock yarn. Araucania Nature wool in one of the multy colorways (Ranco) and Alpaca Sox in a gorgeous blue-gray color. I'm already contemplating the patterns for these even though I have three (!) projects on the needles at this very moment. The man also stepped in with GREAT generosity and gifted me with all four volumes of Barbara Walker's A Treasury of Knitting Patterns. That's hours of stitch pattern perusal and swatching. I've already spent a good deal of time flipping through them. It's hard to believe that New Years is next week and I'm back to class. It's also weird to think that I've been knitting less than a year and I'm so completely enamored with this craft. Knit Happy!

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Knit on, lightning speed!

Citrine Socklets
Originally uploaded by zombiegirl1
Yes, I did say that my Holiday knitting was finished. Yes, I lied. I did think I was done but now that my sister is here for Christmas I feel the need to send yet another gift back home with her. I had started this pattern before and decided I didn't like how it was turning out, that, and I dropped a stitch and decided to throw a hissy fit rather than calmly pull out my crochet hook. Second time around I'm pretty satisfied and hope Grandma will be too. Pattern: Citrine Socklets from Holiday Gifts IK in Rowan Cashsoft DK in a pretty dusty rose color on #2 (3.0 mm) needles. I think I cast on Friday night and I'm into the foot, pretty good for being out all day yesterday.
Did I mention how great it is to have my sis here? She's a knitter too so I've been able to troll my favorite yarn store without worrying about the person with me. I also get to experience having another knitter with me on the sofa while watching movies. There's a lot of knit-speak going on at home right now and it makes me uber-happy since the knitting group doesn't meet till after the New Year. Hooray for knitting siblings!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Covet! Wednesday

Happy almost Holidays everyone! I know you're all probably scrambling to get everything done before next Tuesday but take a break, have a nice cup of coffee (or tea if you're into that kind of thing) and give yourself a minute. Take a deep breath and tell yourself it's okay if things aren't perfect. Okay. I've been a little scrambled myself lately and pulling out my knitting project to take a breather is perfectly fine even if I am late getting down to UPS. I've done a little browsing for myself over the last few days in anticipation of some Christmas scrilla. Yay. Yet another Etsy shop has made me drool and wish that shipping overseas didn't take so darn long. All the pretty fibers has gorgeous handspun fibers and they all look so good it's hard to choose, and the colors! Beautiful jewel tones and Autumnal colors to bright candy-colored yarns. Did I mention she's got spinning fiber too? It's a bit spendy but that's to be expected for handspun and hand-dyed yarns. I say go for it, you deserve a treat after all of the pre-holiday madness, right?

If you're looking for some cool holiday crafts to do with some of your older younguns, or by yourself, take a look at Custom Paper Toys. He's got some amazing movable paper toys, I love the bobble-head reindeer rockin' out, as well as free downloadable pdfs. The instructions look easy to follow and most print out on one sheet of paper. Enjoy your crafty holidays and don't forget to take some time for yourself! Happy knitting!

Monday, December 17, 2007


Originally uploaded by zombiegirl1
I am so incredibly not into Mondays. That is all.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Done & Done

I've finished a lot of knitting lately but haven't got up the gumption to, you know, post about it. But I've fallen in love with this one, it's for my younger brother (19-ish) for Christmas. The pattern is free from Hello Yarn, available in the French for all of you bilingual folk. It took about a week to complete and most of that was just putting off knitting up the lining and tacking it down. I used Rowan Cashsoft in black and cream for the outside and used up the rest of the ball of black for the lining. Needles #3 & #1 just like the pattern calls for but instead of a provisional cast on (I didn't like fiddling with knitting into that) I used a cable cast on and knit my way up and then picked up from the purl bumps on the inside and knit the lining which gave a really pretty finished edge. Phew. I'm pretty darn sure I'm done with this knitting for other people crap for right now and to reinforce that point I cast on for the Tangled Yoke Cardigan. For me. It feels really strange to knit something on a larger scale than, say, mittens or hats. The yarn is beautiful and I'm totally digging the color which is helpful when you're hoping to get a whole darn sweater done before the seasons change.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Covet! Wednesday

Drops design. Oh yes, I love it and best of all the patterns are FREE! Yay! They've got some beautiful stuff and lots and lots of stuff in general. Socks, purses, felted items, and awesome sweater patterns like the one pictured (pattern # 103-1). If you're on Ravelry you can queue them up like nobody's business and get knitting tout-suite.
The Winter edition of Knitty is chock full of pretty little things. I'm especially fond of Ice Queen. I haven't knit with Kidsilk Haze yet but it looks great with the little sparkly beads. I've also got an urge to knit Sally the eco fairy just because she's so darn cute. I suppose it's a little late to get a couple done for my nieces but it's not too early to start for next year, right? Am I totally insane? Pretty much.
In the best of the best wonderful knitting news I'm practically done with the Holiday knitting just in time to ship off to various homes. I'm finishing up the hem for We Call them Pirates and trying to bust out the Citrine Socklets. It's liberating (and not just for my needles) to be practically done and able to knit for me. I've got three sweaters worth of yarn ready to knit up as soon as I'm really truly done, not to mention the cornucopia of socks.

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Take Another Dip

Back to the FO Sea for yet another dip. I'm only moderately pleased with the outcome of this one since I screwed up somewhere right before the crown shaping. Do I care? Kinda. I'm going to chalk up the non-tinking to the fact that this is going to my older brother who is a non–knitter and won't even notice the mistake. But he will be incredibly excited about a hat made just for him and the bald glory that is his noggin. Specs: Koolhaas Hat from Holiday Interweave Knits in Cascade 220 Superwash on #8 needles.
In other knitting news I cast on We Call Them Pirates as soon as the aforementioned hat was finished and am already past the first skull repeat. I love stranded colorwork, I would lick it to death if it weren't fuzzy and I would get some crazy yarn hairball thing happening. Even better is that the yarn is Rowan Cashsoft and it is by no means difficult to work with. In fact as soon as I'm finished gabbing it up with y'all I'm going to retire to a brightly lit room and have some one on one time with it. Best knitting wishes to everyone this week and may you make your holiday knitting deadlines.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

So Close, So Far

Hiram H Chittenden Locks
Originally uploaded by zombiegirl1
Today I turned in my last homework assignment this quarter. All that is left to me is to study study study for my final next Wednesday. It'll help that we have two days of review scheduled and then about 4 days off of class (weekend included) to practice. I've got just under two months to get my admissions for UW ready to go and one more quarter at North, then I'm hopefully, finally, at last ready to move on. I feel ready.

On a knitting note I received two packages in the mail yesterday and am only waiting for better (read: not night time at 5pm) lighting to take pictures. I'll just tease you with one word: Sundara.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Covet! Wednesday

The new winter Knitty is out. I've been trying to actually take a gander and the server keeps failing. Looks like everybody else is trying not to work as well. Last week I posted about those Acorn socks from Knitspot. I did indeed go back to Fearless Fibers and she had put more up on her site so I snatched that up before I could blink. I should get it this week depending on the crazy Seattle weather. Last weekend I hit the craft fair and really wanted to pick up some of the beautiful yarn from Spincycle up in Bellingham - then the snow started and I decided getting home safely was probably more important. How could I? So now I'm contemplating hitting up the Bellingham Farmer's Market to gorge myself on handspun. So pretty and the ladies at the booth were so very very nice. Definitely on my wish list. I think that's about it for this week, my holiday knitting is ramped up to warp speed and my final is next week. So much knitting time in my future over this Holiday break I can't wait.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Let it snow!

It is indeed snowing in Seattle. We were out and about planning on lunch in Queen Anne and maybe some record shopping when it started. I'm from California. I'm not really confident in my snow-driving abilities and according to what I saw driving (sloooowly) home Seattleites shouldn't be so confident either. So we're hunkered down with movies and food to make for the family gathering tomorrow and my knitting and we're good. Cozy and safe in our little nest and I can finally admit to myself that Christmas is coming and that I think I'm excited for it. So, let it snow!

Friday, November 30, 2007

Pear Pizza & Pajamas

Brrrr!!! It's cold up here in the Great NW. The weather people are predicting possible snow for tomorrow morning. Good thing I've got lots of knitting lined up and ready to go just in case, and movies too. So it's just about 630 and I've already shrugged out of the work clothes and into my 'lounge wear' aka pajamas. I'm cozy and warm and trying to ignore the cold that's been tapping me on the shoulder and saying "Excuse me, but I do believe you're about to fall ill." Just to prove the Cold wrong I've ordered a seasonal pie from my favorite place, cracked open a nice dry cider, and am about to hunker down with my knitting and movies. Sounds like bliss, no? Oh, and if anyone is in Seattle over the weekend the Urban Craft Uprising is going on at Seattle Center. Support your indie crafters! The project pictured is one of the two foliage hats that I've knit for my nieces in Kansas. One is in blue the other is green in Malabrigo Chunky. I went down a needle size since these are for kidlet heads. They're sure to keep little heads warm and, by the way, only took an evening each to knit up.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Covet! Wednesday

I am in love with this sock pattern. Anne at knitspot has done it again. I saw this last night and noticing that there was a kit available I followed the link - already sold out! Bummer. The kit was available through Fearless Fibers and while I was disappointed that there weren't any left I stayed to browse the shop. She's got some gorgeous yarns up right now - I'm particularly enamoured of the Deepest Forest colorway and am imagining some pretty lace socks with a wave or leaf design.
I also keep returning to the Loopy Ewe to drool over some Urban Gypz yarn. Really, over and over and over again. But somehow I just never buy it and I'm not quite sure why. Maybe it's the price tag, I haven't spent that much on one skein of yarn - yet. But it's beautiful and I love to just go and look at it. Not to mention the fact that I hear the Loopy Ewe is awesome to order from and they really do have an amazing selection. Maybe some Holiday scrilla will be heading my way, I won't hold my breath.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Swimming in the FO Sea

Ene Blocking
Originally uploaded by zombiegirl1
I'm already missing my long weekend(s). The last two have been 5 days and 4 days respectively. Just think of all of that knitting time now going to waste because of stupid things like work and school. I utilized all of that knitting time to the utmost starting and finishing objects like a fiend. I finished Ene's Scarf weekend before this last one, a pair of fetching, a Foliage hat, a Nest tote, and one mitten of a pair. Yay me. Knitting for the holiday that will not be named is progressing nicely and I should meet most of my self-designated deadlines.

Ene's Scarf Specs: Most of one 900 yd skein of Fly-dyed lace-weight on #7 needles. The pattern is from Scarf Style.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Accidentally on Purpose

The plan for post-work pre-4 day weekend was to do the Algebra assignment ( I heart imaginary numbers), make the two pies and possibly do a little cleaning. Instead I accidentally on purpose drank a bottle of beaujolais, watched a History channel dvd about Lizzie Borden (jump rope anyone?), finished up weaving in the ends of the latest foliage hat and knit most of a shopping bag promised to a good friend. Oh, also buying a pair of Seattle Symphony tickets for Handel's Messiah in a couple of weeks. None of what I actually accomplished is in preparation for tomorrow which would have allowed for some serious sleeping in and late morning coffee drinking. Good thing it's just me and the man tomorrow for some 'turkey' (we do it vegetarian style here), movie watching, and pie eating. Raspberries also to my friend Rob who will shortly be flying to London to experience the gloriousness of not being in the United States. Envy. *Photo is courtesy of the Ballard Locks last week on a particularly cold and rainy day.*

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Covet! Wednesday

I'm back from the friend-in-town funk (having any amount of time off from work makes me ambivalent about returning) just in time for a long weekend. From here on out I've decided to stay out of shopping centers and department stores. It's just too crazy and as I get older I get less tolerant of other people (and their children) and pretty disgusted over the mass consumption and gluttony that goes on during the Holiday season. I plan on spending lots of time browsing Etsy. This is what I've come up with so far. Pretty colors and it looks incredibly squishy and twisty. This is from Karen's Heavenly Creations, she's even got some Christmas theme yarn up in her shop and it all looks pretty drool-worthy. While you're over there trying to resist snatching up all her yarn take a look at Handkraft. Oh. My. Goodness. She's only got a few things in her shop right now but man, are they gorgeous! I love the muted tones and color combinations. They remind me of faded William Morris tapestries. Yum.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Vinyl Enhancement Expedition

Originally uploaded by zombiegirl1
My girl Nickie was up from last Wednesday to Saturday evening. There was much laughter, much much food, and a great vinyl-enhancing trip to Sonic Boom. I am a list person. I love lists, making lists, crossing things off of lists. This time round I was without a list and I have to say it was a much more pleasurable trip. Let me enumerate because it makes me happy to do so: Joy Division (re-releases) of Closer and Unknown Pleasures, Daniel Johnston, Parliament (best of), Sun Records 2 record compilation, Sly & the Family Stone Anthology. This is quite a haul and I stopped at the 'S' section in the new vinyl section and only flipped through the 'new' used vinyl section. I am a paragon of restraint.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Covet! Best Friend Edition

My bestest friend in the whole wide world is visiting for the rest of the week. So normally Wednesday is all about knitting and what I want but since she's here we'll talk about what we want, or are doing today. First up is our mythical trip to Morocco through Road Scholar which will happen when I have the funds and she has the vacation time. Donations are accepted.
One thing achieved already today is the deliciousness of Mae's Cafe and a good combo of coffee, grits, smoked trout, and vegetarian mushroom gravy. Yum. Next up is the new SAM- totally renovated with a lot more....stuff. They've got a really cool exhibit of Japanese art from the Kobe Museum. We'll most likely finish up with the Downtown branch of the Seattle Public Library which has been critically acclaimed for it's crazy architecture. This is not my favorite branch, I prefer the little one near my house. And of course there will be food, much much much delicious food. We're going to eat it. You are what you it.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Madrona Fiber Art Festival

Every single fricking class I wanted to take is full. I have knit-hate right now for all my knitting brethren who were on the ball yesterday and got into their classes. I believe there may be steam coming out of my ears. How do newbies get in on this type of thing? Is there a secret handshake? A decoder ring given out to the kniterati? A three page form full of knitting Q&A to be submitted with a personal statement? Maybe a jaunt down to Stitches West would be a good sub. Raspberries.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Brick Wall Knitting

Ene's Scarf
Originally uploaded by zombiegirl1
The progress on this project feels incredibly slow and painful. I know that I'm making progress since I'm knitting on it monogamously at the moment, yet no matter how much I knit at the time I feel I've hit a brick wall. The post-its on the chart are moving, the number of repeats on this particular chart are marked down and steadily growing. Why do I feel this sense of ....frustration? It's a gorgeous yarn, 70/30 angora/nylon and I love to bury my face in the resulting squishy and luxurious fabric. The end is almost in sight and yet the creative rush I feel towards the end of other projects is absent. Does my joy with a knitting project have an expiration date? Does it go off like milk in the fridge and start to sour? How in the world do I repair my love for Ene's Scarf? Finish it? Hibernate it (I tried this once and it didn't seem to work)? Close my eyes and hearken back to when I started the project to try and capture that lost knit-lust? She's there, waiting for me when I get home, do I tell her it's over or just continue along out of habit. *sigh*

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Finished Object

I finished these babies up last week but gifted them this week. The very happy recipient modeled them for me outside of work. I call them 'Fetching Kate' since Kate provided me with garden fresh raspberries and tomatoes all summer long she deserved a little gift of her own. The yarn is Trendsetter Tonalita and I used just under the whole skein. I loved them so much I almost kept them for myself. Shame on me, yay for Kate!

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Covet! Wednesday

My love for Etsy continues unabated. The past two weeks of purchasing has buoyed my addiction both to yarn and to indie craftsters alike. See that pretty pink yarn? See it? I am NOT a pink person. I own nothing pink, until now. Pink is from Yarn-Lust on Etsy and the colorway is called Lust. I believe she has colorways for each of the deadly sins. Who knew Lust would remind me of juicy raspberries? I looooove it.
Not in the knitting covetousness listing but something that is so insanely awesome I must list it here (covet, covet, covet) is Kolos Designs on Etsy. Bugs generally freak me out but I'm in complete love with these bangles and rings and things. They are beautiful and I actually ordered a pair of the cuff links for the Man for the upcoming Holiday which shall not be named because it came way too fast this year. I can imagine myself knitting away at knit night with one of the bangles attracting the oohs and aahs of my fellow knitters. Ohhh, Etsy you empty my wallet.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

The pain! The pain!

Most of Sunday, all of yesterday, and I'm assuming all of today I have been or am in a great deal of neck-related pain. This happens every so often, I fall asleep in the wrong position and a neck injury I received while boating (actually tubing behind a boat) flares up like brand new. The Man has to help me out of bed since I can't actually move from my shoulders up and I struggle to get on with my day while trying to ignore my immobility. Why do I do this? It's mom's fault. Every time she was sick or injured she worked herself until she was about to drop dead. I follow suit even while thinking that it is incredibly ridiculous and I should be at home, propped up with pillows, and reading or knitting or browsing past issues of IK. So today is that day. The Man helped me up to post an email to my morning instructor, I will call work soon (I already tried but the machine wouldn't pick up), and I will shortly crawl back into my flannel-sheeted bed on much too much ibuprofen and, finally, rest.

Friday, November 2, 2007

Knit Winter

The Winter issue of Interweave Knits is here. I got mine in the mail yesterday and I found it, well, a little underwhelming after the kickass Fall issue. Don't get me wrong there are things I will knit from this issue but I didn't feel the wild knitting abandon I felt with the Fall IK. I like the swing jacket (left) and the sweater on the cover. Maybe it's the colors the projects are knit up in that turned me off or the fact that one of the models seems to give the stinkeye. I'm trying to visualize most things in different colors and with slightly different shaping - slightly longer or with shorter sleeves. It's a little difficult to do because I really want to like everything as is and instead am feeling knit-ambivalent. In any case, most of my personal knitting is on hold for Holiday knitting because I really just realized that the Holiday season is practically upon us. Must knit faster.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

In with the In Crowd

Hurry! Hurry! Hurry! Blue Moon Fiber Arts just opened up their 2008 Rockin' Sock Club for registration at 10am (PST) this morning. I printed out that membership form and stuck it in the work mail within nanoseconds. I'm pretty sure the hairs on my arms stood up and I might have suffered a slight heart attack. This is heady stuff, I have now attained (if everything goes right) the holy grail of sock clubs. Now I just have to wait it out until January when the first shipment comes. It's a good thing I have some (read, a crapload) of knitting to do until then. Oh, and the Holidays are coming up too.
In other news Jessica is on Stash and Burn this episode so check it out. FYI, I'm feeling pretty darn lucky about my knitting group and the rockstar knitters who are a part of it.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Covet! Halloween Edition

Happy Halloween! Etsy is full of great Halloween-themed implements and yarns. Being a big geek I love everything skully and gorey. Zombies top the list followed closely by vampires and the rest of the ghoulie family. These skull stitch markers are way too cute, and could help you extend your Halloween celebration into Dios de los Muertos (Nov. 1 & 2). They're from SeeJayneKnits on Etsy along with some great yarn in goblin colors. Enjoy your All Hallows' and Day of the Dead and try not to od on candy.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Radio Transmission

KEXP, the world's finest radio station based in Seattle is having their Fall membership drive. Please donate and help keep the music going - they offer so much to the music community and non-profit organizations that I feel obligated to help. If you are a music lover, then you should too! Besides, if you donate a hundred bucks you get a rad-sauce t-shirt with the radio diagram at left on it. I'm renewing my membership to put my money where my mouth is. This isn't just for the locals, they offer live streaming music on their website as well as traveling to different locations throughout the year and sponsoring shows all over the place. Please help support the radio station where music matters.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Spinning Around

Cheeky Scarecrow Socks
Originally uploaded by zombiegirl1
Yesterday I went over to Jessica's place to learn how to spin. It was incredibly educational and really fun to learn a new fiber-related skill. She sent me home with a spinning wheel, some extra bobbins, and a lot of good advice. The Man was excited just to watch and I felt that I got a bit better with my drafting/twisting action. I can only liken it to what it must be like to learn how to drum - all of that foot and hand coordination. I'm excited to finish up my bobbin, get another one started and ply it together. This is going to be my first spinning/dyeing experiment and I'm looking forward to the finished product. I think this is going to be yet another time-suck, I started spinning once I got set up at home and the next time I looked up it was two hours later. Yikes! Any learn-to-spin horror stories out there? I wonder how other spinners/knitters felt when they first started out?

In FO land I finished up my first pair of socks for me. Yay! Just in time to post for sockburning for Stash & Burn. Specs: Thank Ewe hand-dyed sock yarn (about 60% of the 630 yd ball) on #2 dpns, Cheeky sock pattern from No Sheep for You. I've been wearing them around the house and I do believe I'm a convert to the hand-knit sock cult. Viva la sockolution!

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Birthday Booty

Originally uploaded by zombiegirl1
The past couple of days here in the Northwest have been so Autumnally gorgeous I just can't stand it. I feel obnoxiously pleasantly tempered towards everyone and everything, even work. Today the Man and I hit the U-District farmer's market for some hot cider, honey boscs, and antique apple varietals. Delish stuff, and since I'm learning to spin (!) tomorrow I headed on over to the Weaving Works to pick up some roving and of course a couple of skeins for fetching gifts. Today just made me want to kick up my heels and drink up some cider and that's exactly what I'm going to do. Well, kick up my heels onto a stool and do some knitting anyways.
I eluded to some awesome birthday booty in an earlier post so I think I'll just enumerate the goodness here really quick: two books from my bestest gal pal in Norcal( The Abortion by Richard Brautigan and The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger), three skeins of Socks that Rock, an iTunes gift card from the Berd, a Visa gift card from the Mom, the new Elizabeth movie with Wes and Boy Aaron, Harmony interchangeable needles from myself, AND from the Man himself a swift and a ball-winder. So much knitting and reading gloriousness that I'm going to have a heck of a time working through it all. But that's half the fun, huh? Here's best wishes to all of you out there in the blogosphere and hoping that your Fall is as wonderful as mine has been. Cheers!

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Covet! Wednesday

This being the first Wednesday post-birthday I have a bit of knitterly news to share, but that can wait for another day. My latest Knit Picks order arrived with yarn for my Modern Quilt Wrap and my metal double-points. I just have to say that those metal dpns are fabulous. I love them so much that I cast on for a sock right away and finished one already. I had to get used to the weight of the needles but besides that they are wonderful and pointy and remind me a lot of piercing equipment. Who wouldn't love that?

I also received Knitting Classic Style by Veronik Avery which is oh-so-pretty. Most patterns in the book are already queued up for someday knits. The book is organized well with good, and sometimes multiple, pictures of each item. It drives me crazy when patterns aren't shown clearly because the model is slouched over or too far away to see the stitch patterns. Not so with this one, the photography is pretty but practical enough to see how it actually fits the model and it also makes me want to move to a rural farmhouse where I can wear my hand-knit sweaters while tromping through the forest or milking my pygmy goats. I love love love the military cardigan and am already looking for a substitute yarn, maybe cascade 220 in a heather color. This is bordering on obsession.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Covet! Birthday Edition

Today is my birthday, fluffblay, or earthday depending on who you talk to. Yesterday I was told, "Welcome to your late twenties." Big whoop, none of it counts until you hit thirty and I'm planning a blowout for that one. I've been really really naughty in the past couple of weeks buying yarn like nobody's business but not necessarily casting on like mad. It's made for some good yarn sniffing and fondling and my crutch for all the spending is that it's my birthday month. Why not celebrate? The most recent purchase (as of 5 minutes ago) is Sundara Yarn's new yarn club. I'm really excited as this is my first yarn club, she changed it up from her previous club so it is by monthly subscription rather than a huge chunk of cash for x amount of months of yarn. Also exciting about this is that she gives you the choice of seasonal colors of yarn. I totally went for the Autumn colors cause that's my thing but have a looksy cause she's got some gorgeous stuff and it's different for each subscribed month. Weee!!! I've been a bit drooly over sock yarn lately, maybe it's the podcasts I've been listening to which are sock-centric. So I made my first purchase of Blue Moon Fiber Arts Rockin' Sock yarn. 3 SKEINS!! Rocky Horror (pic above), Space Dust, and Hoofle Foofle. I'm impatiently waiting for them to arrive so I can sleep with them under my pillow and dream of the socks to come. My Sophie's Toes purchase also arrived from etsy and it is soooo squishylicious and I love the color - Rustic Cabin - which will nicely show off some lace patterning. There are more things I could add but these are the most recent and therefore most exciting.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Ghostland Observatory - Vibrate clip, live Seattle, 10/13/07

Ghostland Observatory

Best show ever. I can't even tell you how good it was except for the fact that my eardrums are still a little wonky and my feet still hurt a little from dancing so much. If they ever come anywhere near you drop everything and GO!! I can't remember the last time I had such fun at a show.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Sad Sad City

Not really, I'm ecstatic cause I'm going to see these suckers tomorrow. Happy dance with a twist. So starts the birthday celebration - synth-pop-dance goodness brought to me by my favorite screamers.
I also received my Knit Picks order yesterday resplendent with rainbow colors for a little Berd's Christmas gift. Not to mention the little bits of goodness for me - lace weight in two different colors, some palette for the Endpaper mitts, and some size 2 metal dpns for pointy pointy sock-making skills. I also put an order in for some Rockin' Sock Yarn. Can I just mention the colorway 'Rocky Horror'? Taste the rainbow!!

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Wednesday's are for Sharing

Let's talk about sin shall we? How supposedly deadly they are, how we're not supposed to indulge in any of them, and how frickin awesome these plates are! I found these on Etsy and they hail all the way from New Zealand. She's got all kinds of kitschy goodness on her shop and even a disclaimer for adult content. Love it! I would love a set to hang on my wall granny style. Thanks Trixie Delicious for being so totally sinfully awesome.
Yet another Etsy shop is Fearless Fibers for all of you fiber-obsessed readers. She's got some gorgeous yarns as well as patterns, sock blockers, and kits. Totally pettable. I like that it's kind of an all-in-one shop what with the sock yarn, the pattern, and the blockers available from one vendor. Roll around and drool on that why dontcha? *I think I'm renaming Wednesday's are for Sharing to Covet this Wednesdays. How delightfully sinful of me. mwa ha ha.

Sunday, October 7, 2007

The Dangers of Craft

Last night's craft night quickly morphed into drinking too much Pumpkin beer night. I'm feeling lethargic today but still working away on some knitting. I started Ene's Scarf from Scarf Style and having frogged it once I think I'm on my way. I'm using the hand-dyed yarn I picked up at the Puyallup fair and it is sooo soft and squishy. October is my birthday month so I've invested in a little Autumnal color for my stash. I love Etsy and all of the wonderful indie crafters who have shops. I picked up a skein of lace weight from white willow called Autumn Oak. Totally gorgeous, I sat and sniffed it for hours yesterday. I want to knit up something with a leaf motif so I can have Fall with me all year long. I also got a huge (630 yds) skein of fingering weight sock yarn from thankewe in a colorway called scarecrow along with some purdy blue stitchmarkers. I think some leafy knee socks are in order. Head on over to Etsy and make friends with some of the crafters, you'll be glad you did even if your credit card won't.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Wednesdays are for Sharing

Two great websites today. I'm feeling rather blah about this week so this is going to be brief. The first is Vintage Purls which has awesome vintage knitting patterns - for FREE!! The only caveat being that sizing is on the small side. I love these patterns and am totally willing to bust out the knitting calculator to resize some for moi.

Second up is Cookie A of the Monkey fame. I'm probably late on the draw for this one but I didn't realize she had an actual site with sock patterns to buy. Wow, are they pretty. I'm not sure I'm up to speed on my socktacularness to pull these puppies off but they sure make me drool. I can't imagine how they look in person. Ooooh, socky.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Why oh why....

Is Ravelry so addictive, seriously! I just can't help myself even when I'm slightly tipsy from cider and actually have to work on a Saturday. I should be in bed but am totally committed to browsing other people's projects until the wee hours of the morn. Must....knit.....this....scarf.....drool.... You get the idea, and yet it happens over and over again. Weee!!! If only I had about four more hands that could knit without conscious direction. Wow. That's a thought.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Wednesday's are for Sharing

I almost forgot it was Wednesday - ya know with the Anniversary, the first day of class (8 am Algebra!), and my change of schedule it's all been kind of crazy. But I do have this rocktastic yarn from Lime & Violet of the podcast fame. Yummy. The color is pooka but it reminds me of some kind of blackberry cobbler that I want to eat up, you know, or knit socks with. So pretty. My fingers keep twitching toward the card and I have to distract myself with finishing the things that are actually on my needles. (Back to School U-Neck Vest from Fitted Knits) That pretty much encompasses my sharing news because knitting podcasts are my new obsession. I listen to them all day long at work. It helps me get my knitting fix without actually being able to knit. Lime & Violet is my new favorite - could that have anything to do with them earning the 'explicit' tag? Seriously.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Happy Anniversary!

Originally uploaded by zombiegirl1
Today is our one year wedding anniversary - five years together. Time flies. Happy Anniversary to the Man! We're off to downtown Seattle to gad about town and eat some yummy food. Plus no work tomorrow! Hooray!

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Wednesday's are for Sharing

My newest obsession. No, not Bob the Dog, Stash and Burn!! I spent pretty much all weekend catching up on past podcasts while knitting away. These two ladies are so funny and I love the questions they ask each other about their knitting lives and projects. They have wonderful rapport and a great sense of humor. Even if you're a new knitter (like me!) you'll enjoy the content - they talk a lot about color, pattern, fit, and STASH! So good. Stash and Burn is available through their website or by subscribing to their free podcast in the iTunes store. Just listening to them makes me want to move to San Francisco so I can be their knitting compadre. Viva la Stash and Burn!
Next up is Fetching from the Summer 06 Knitty. I love this pattern. I had a ball of yarn left over from my Kittyville hat and decided to knit up a pair of Fetching to go with it. This would be Christmas knitting (never too early to start!) for my little sister. So, about a day later I had the cutest softest fingerless mitts ready to go into the gift box. I think this would be a perfect pattern for learning how to cable, plus incredibly inexpensive as it takes one ball of 98 yd/50 gram yarn. Whoohoo!

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Fair Enough

Oh sheep, you may be dumb but you sure know how to grow wool. Beautiful, gorgeous, sheepy smelling wool. All the sheep were so cute and they were all getting haircuts which reminded me of wool which reminded me that there must be handspun at the fair. I saw lots of 4-H moms spinning along in their camp chairs posted outside the barns. Yes! A sure sign of impending hand-made yarn. But after 3 hours of fruitless searching I began to despair. Where were the quilts? The pies and preserves? The floral designs? The giant pumpkins and heirloom tomatoes? The needlepoint entries? My feet started to drag and throb, my head grew heavy and I grew cranky enough to think that strawberry shortcake would be a fine substitution for yarn. (What?!!!) Although delicious, it couldn't really substitute. And there - across the hall- I glimpsed it!! Yarn! Real handmade, handspun, hand whatever, yarn! So I made my way in, wandered around touching and smelling everything and came away with some super-pretty hand-dyed angora/polyamide yarn. Ahhh...success. I'm rather surprised at my scanty purchasing which must have been brought about by a combination of 'fair people' , deep fried food, hours of walking, and a sudden sugar rush. I was intrigued by the giant skeins (546 yds) of sock yarn but just couldn't make up my mind. The Man was getting even crankier than me and so I grabbed the one thing calling my name gave it a good whiff and headed to the register. It shall be a clapotis for me. Mmmm...angora clapotis.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Fair Enough

Which is I've had enough today - all day today. My feet are sore, I'm tired of people, my ears are straining for silence and I can't wait to put my feet up, have a glass of beaujolais, and knock a few rows of Clapotis out. This was my first time at the Puyallup Fair (pew-al-up for you non-Northwesterners) and I'm glad I went. I ate fair food (pretty much everything deep fried, although not on a stick) and was searching somewhat-in-vain for the craftiness I remember from fairs as a kid. But I did find this guy (see pic) who just ate, blows raspberries at the camera, and is about the size of a lap dog. Yay!! He's a baby pygmy and soooo cute! I was actually swayed enough by his pint-sizedness to tell the Man yeah, sure, we can have goats! How about that one? You mean they need friends? Okay, three or four would be fine too. Too cute. I decided I pretty much love dwarf-size things. Dwarf bunnies, baby chickens, pygmy goats, shetland ponies. The list goes on. I've got some craft rant for later but for now, I'll leave you with this picture. The man sure does love goats. He loves them enough to gaze longingly into this one's creepy goaty eyes and whisper to it... I want to take you home but my wife says no. Sure, thanks, blame it all on me. It's not my fault I only love dwarf animals.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Friday at last!

I'm so excited to be home and for it to be the weekend and for the possibility of finishing the Clapotis in the next couple of days. The man wants to go the fair - I'm unsure as I don't like crowds, I don't really want to pay for parking, and I'm not sure I'm up for 'fair people.' I'd much prefer to hunker down with my knitting and the BBC miniseries of Middlemarch. Is it possible to be a spinster when you're married? I'm becoming crazy cat lady without the benefit of singleness or many cats (we've just got the one) or liking the idea of a brandy alexander. I also don't wear much costume jewelry although I'm not actually opposed to the idea of it. Shiny, sparkley things attract my attention like pets with a laser pointer. I guess I'll actually get to the point of this post - the Fall Knitty is finally here! Yay! As completely underwhelmed as I was by the summer issue I'm glad to see several patterns I actually want to knit. (See pic!) I've only browsed through so far so I'm sure I'll have more to blog about post-article reading. Happy Knitty to you too!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Wednesdays are for Sharing..

I'm pretty excited about this post, so much so that the first thing I'm going to share is already on my 'Darling Husband, this is what I would like for Christmas list'. He's okay with that - it never hurts to steer him in the right direction. Easy these days with all the knitting action going on. Anywho, Knitpicks just released Harmony - interchangeable needles and cables that are wood. Oh my, are they ever wood! So cool and kind of gaudy old-ladyish at the same time. I heart them. So you can buy these kids singly or in a set that comes with size 4 - 11 needle tips and 4 cables. For now I'll just have to sustain myself by visiting their website and drooling a little.

As Fall weather is fast-approaching, rather already here in the Northwest, my thoughts turn to layering. Sweaters, scarves, coats, and my new favorite thing - fingerless gloves. I found these
cool ones through Ravelry
but you can get the free pattern here. They're oh so pretty and I can't wait to knit them up in some pretty fall colors. I love the pattern and the length of the cuff. Long enough to go under a coat but not so long you're wrists look like sausages. It seems that painter's palette is a popular yarn choice for these so you can head on over to Knitpicks and get yourself some 1.99 yarn and some harmony needles then download this pattern and knit happy thinking - Wow! That girl Erin, she sure does all the work for you. Well, all of it but the knitting.

Saturday, September 8, 2007

Good Question

I might have been remiss in my posting of last night that everyone knows about Ravelry. Ravelry is an online community of knitters and crocheters where you can create your own profile complete with stash, needles, projects in progress and a queue to add patterns you want to make. All this as well as social networking and lots and lots of information about yarns and patterns and help. Right now it's in beta testing so you have to be on a waiting list to be invited in but I think it's soon to be made public. In short, it's a great resource for knitters and fiber arts people of all abilities and backgrounds. Go to their website (linked above) to get more info and add yourself to the waiting list. Thanks for the question!
In other knitterly news, as of 10 minutes ago I finished my socks. I'll be sticking those suckers in the cedar chest to await the shipping of Christmas gifts. As of right now I'm incredibly ahead of the game in that department.

Friday, September 7, 2007

Friday is Clam Chowder Night

This reminds me of going to Denny's with the grandparents. Friday is always clam chowder night. With the little packets of saltines and the thick white bowls with handles. You know the kind. But I digress - I am now officially a Ravelry member. I'm sorry if you're not and have been waiting forever, but there it is. It's definitely worth the wait and I've already learned a lot from cruising around. Well, that makes it sound kind of dirty but I do love a good lurk. To make things even better, despite my incredibly crappy 4 day work week (how the hell does that happen?), I arrived home with a tally of Strongbow, some movie watching action, and two new knitting books on my doorstep. Apparently UPS knows how to treat a girl right. ;) Scarf Style and Folk Style. I'm putting off putting my grubby hands on them until I've got part of that Strongbow in me, a movie in the mac, and some food in my belly. Ahhhh....bliss. (Pictured is a little update of the Clapotis - the first stitches, they are dropped!)

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Wednesdays are for Sharing

I've semi-recovered from yesterday's slump. Only two more days until Friday and that, my friends, is helping my outlook immeasurably. There are two things on the agenda for today, the first of which I've heard people talking about and think I've even picked up a skein or so to fondle at the lys. This would be Tilli Tomas yarns. I'm not quite so enamored of her patterns but the yarn, oh the yarn. Just looking at it makes me want to pick it up and stroke it and whisper sweet nothings into it's not-there ear. I see wraps and scarves and fancy little shrugs for that one time a year I go to the ballet in my future. Well, sometime in my future.

And I've totally got a thing for this burnt orange color this Fall, terra cotta? Burnt Sienna? Pumpkin? I'm totally there. (Let's forget this Fall's fashion dearth of truly jewel-like colors.) I don't need no stinkin' hot pink sweater! Give me plums, garnets, teals, coffees, and charcoals! I live for Fall and it's gorgeous array of deep rich colors. Alright, enough of the rant.

If you like the Instructables website you're going to love Craftster. I can, and sometimes do, spend hours browsing and ogling peoples crafts on this site. They've got every kind of craft and how-to known to crafter-kind. I love the tutorials and to see people recreate, modify, and morph existing crafts (and other household objects) into cool creations. You'll be astounded by the scope of creativity and want to craft to you're own heart's content. Viva la craft-planet!