Monday, February 23, 2009

So long and thanks for all the fish...

So yeah, if you haven't already guessed, I've given up on this blog. It was just another obligation that wasn't giving me anything in return, so I stopped updating. I'll leave my old posts up, but don't expect anything new.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Introducing Jesse the Wonder Knitter and her Amazing Expanding Stash!

I have been hopping all over the country lately, and doing a lot of knitting. I've also been listening to a lot of podcasts, and knitting while doing that. The Blankie of Wonder and Magic had become my official zoning-out-watching-tv-or-listening-to-limenviolet project, and it shows!
I had to stand on a deck chair to get the whole width in the frame. It's quite wide. I was a little worried back when I first joined up the base row of squares and saw how much it stretched, but I've gotten over that. I want this to be about as large as a twin bed blanket.

I took the Forest Path Stole on both of my big trips, and got a lot of work done on it.
Last time you saw it all I had was the bottom triangles! I must confess that I didn't make all of this progress on my trips, but still the majority of it. I'm going to the beach next week and that would be a wonderful opportunity for some more progress, but I already have my projects planned out. One of those projects is this,
the Seascape Stole from the spring Knitty. The pattern calls for laceweight yarn, but you know how I like to buck the system. I'm using sport weight, Louet Gems in colorway Carribean Blue to be exact. It's perfect for my mom. She loves all things beachy.

I didn't buy any yarn on my Vermont trip, but I did buy this roving. It's 4 oz. of Louet Gems merino/silk, and the color is even more gorgeous in person. I'm going to be spinning this up and selling it on Etsy, because as much as I would love to have this yarn, I want a spinning wheel more.
It is kinda hard being spindle-dependent, but I can make some pretty neat things:
Roving from, colorway Monsters Inc., with some hot pink from another batch of her roving, Raspberry Soda.

The absolute most awesome thing I did in Vermont was to have a private spinning lesson from a friend of a friend who sells her handspun at a local market. I already knew most of the process in theory, so it was just a matter of getting my hands and feet to work together to make it happen. The spinning wheel I used is the exact kind I'm saving for, an Ashford Traveller. It was everything I'd hoped for, though I've decided to get a double-treadle instead of single, which was rather hard to get going and keep going.

Behold, aroundabout 25 yards of 2-ply, shetland/mohair goodness! I'm so happy with this yarn.

I'm really sensetive to fibers on my neck. Even a baby alpaca which feel soft to the hand will prickle and itch a bit on my neck. The only fiber I've found that never does that is angora, which happens to be quite expensive. Mohair sometimes works, but it's really a crapshoot. This yarn? A cloud. Not a single itch. Not one. Sooo happy.

What we have here is a skein of handpainted sock yarn that Tita brought me from Alaska, where she and Mom went while me and the Small Ones went to Washington with our dad.

It's really soft and though I'm not much of a pastel girl, I really like this yarn.

Compared to most knitters, I have a tiny stash. And not by choice, it's just that I have very little money to work with. I make pretty good money at my job, but 90% of that is going into my life savings. The other 10% is going into my spinning wheel fund. That leaves only my $10 per week allowance for all my personal stuff that my mom won't buy. In truth almost all of what I buy is yarn, but still.

I am pleased to say that I am finally starting to acquire a nice little stash, which is divided into 5 main categories:

1: Handspun. Very fulfilling but a rather slow means of stash enhancement.

2: Sock yarn. Doesn't take as long to get but I use this up much faster.

3: Sock yarn leftovers. These are all going to the Blankie of Wonder and Magic.

4: Crap. Stuff that I bought before I developed some taste, that I know I'm never going to use but just never get around to throwing away.

5: Other stuff. Non-sock leftovers, a few balls with a project already attatched, and 6 skeins of undyed wool.

I don't think I'll run out of yarn any time soon, but still, it's nice to have a backup plan.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Some things you should know

1. I am back from my two June trips. I am going on another trip in just a few days. This trip shall involve lots and lots of fibery things. I am excited.

2. I have yarn and FOs to show you from my last two trips.

3. The Blankie of Wonder and Magic has grown considerably since last you met. It is in my lap growing right now.

4. The Forest Path Stole has also grown considerably.

5. I am spinning. It is very thin. It is blue.

6. I have spent the last couple weeks staying up quite late at night on my days off listening to past episodes of Lime and Violet. I am almost caught up to the present. I am loving it.

7. Nair works. It works like magic, but it smells nasty and makes your palms feel strange in a rather unpleasant way.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

In Which I Have Very Little Recovery Time

Hey everybody, did you miss me? I missed you. I haven't had Internet for 11 days and it's nearly driven me crazy. I plan to do a full post on my fabulous adventure, but I'm leaving for camp tomorrow and I still have a ton of stuff to do today, so I don't think I'll have time right now. So just a quick update to let you know I'm back safe and sound.

Friday, June 6, 2008

In Which I Stick my Knitting in the Bushes

As it is a fine (if blistering hot) day outside, I succumbed to the find knitterly tradition of posing my work among the flora. Here we have two fine specimens, one of which is not completely knitting-related.

This was the last week of school for me, and Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday were half days. We got out at 11:45 on those days, and Mom took me out to lunch on Wednesday.

After we ate, we took a look around the Goodwill Emporium near the restaurant. In the back, amongst the boxes and baskets, I spied a hatbox. I was immediately enthralled, owing to a slight obsession with hatboxes since childhood. I picked it up and thought, 'My, what a heavy hatbox. I wonder if there's a hat in it!' There wasn't. Instead, there was another box, slightly smaller but of the same design. I took out the second box and opened it up, to find yet another box. I was positively giddy as I separated the succession of boxes (yes, marvel at my large vocabulary). It was like a set of Russian nesting dolls, which I have also always liked.

In the end, I got a set of four boxes for -get this- Fifteen dollars and one cent. Yes, the price tag actually said $15.01. I have no idea why. But what a score! I will, of course, be using them for yarn storage.
The yarn in there now is KnitPicks Shine Sport in Hollyberry, 14 balls of it. This I have purchased for a cardigan called Rusty. It's pretty obscure, but you can find it on Ravelry.
Another thing I have succumbed to: Monkey socks! I wish I had broken down long ago, this pattern is enchanting, and so is the finished object.

The changes I made were to add a picot hem at the top, knit one less repeat of the lace pattern for the legs, and do a slip stitch heel to make them last longer.
Yarn is Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock, colorway "Huron."

Here we have a skein of merino that I dyed in the wool with food coloring, then spun up into a sport-ish 2ply. It's pretty well balanced, though it is rather loosely plied (this yarn was a pain in the ass to ply, and I think it's not my best work because I was so frustrated with it pretty much from the get-go).
Blankie pix! I've been working on it a lot lately, and it shows. Seen here lounging on the grass in our backyard:
(I feel morally obligated to tell you that not all of our grass is this pretty.)

What is this? A strange growth in the bush?

No, it's just my spindle, and some lovely roving from Shunklies, an Etsy store. Colorway is called "Monsters Inc." except for the pink which is from another batch of her roving.
I've really got a lot more single, but I've taken to winding it off onto the swift when the spindle starts getting too heavy with it.
Yet more succumbing: Magic loop and KnitPicks Harmony needles! What I've got here is a 40'' fixed circular in US size 0 that I got specifically to try out magic loop. The yarn is Trekking XXL in color 145, which I have been stalking since Christmas. I finally found it in a very nice shop called Charlotte Yarn, naturally located in Charlotte, NC.
My Forest Path Stole is coming along nicely after a brief hiatus, but you can't see it now since it's packed away for me to take on my trip. Me, the small ones, and my dad are leaving on Tuesday for a train trip along the northern border of the US. We'll be withing spitting distance of Canada most of the time, and the cool weather will be a nice relief from the depths of Hades (aka South Carolina).

We're taking the train from Chicago to Seattle, then renting a car and driving northwest a couple hours until we get to the very corner of the country, where my dad's parents live. We'll spend a few days visiting with them, sightseeing, and maybe pop into Canada for a day.

I really hope we'll get to Canada, so I can get some All Dressed chips. If you haven't had these, try them! There a type of potato chips from the Ruffles brand, and they have all the chip flavors (barbecue, salt and vinegar, etc) on one chip. It sounds disgusting, but it's actually really good, and you can only get them in Canada. Well you could have them shipped, but it would cost you and arm and a leg.

So now I have something kind of gross to show you. Last weekend (keep that date in mind) I was at my dad's house, where me and Thing 1 have bunk beds. I, being to oldest, get the top bunk. It's pretty nice, except when you fall out of it and hit the hard floor like I did on Friday night. I'm sure it hurt, but I didn't notice because I somehow managed to bang my elbow very hard on something on the way down. It left a mark. Look away now if your are the queasy type!


This is what it looks like a week after the fact. And yes, it still hurts like hell.

So I'm going on a 10-day trip starting Tuesday, and when I get back I'll have a whopping day and a half to recover before hauling myself off to camp for a week.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

"Windy City" Temperature Conversion Chart

60F (16C): Arizonans shiver uncontrollably; Chicagoans are still sunbathing.

50F (10C): Californians try to turn on the heat; Chicagoans plant gardens.

40F (4C): Italian sport cars won't start; Chicagoans drive with the windows down.

32F (0C): Distilled water freezed; Lake Michigan water gets thicker.

20F (-7C): Floridians don coats, thermal underwear, gloves and wool hats; Chicagoans thown on a light jacket.

15F (-9C): Chicagoan have the last cookout before it gets cold.

0F (-18C): All the people in Phoenix die; Chicagoans close the windows.

-10F (-23C): Californians fly away to Mexico. The Girl Scots in Chicago are selling cookies door to door.

-25F (-32C): Hollywood disintegrates. Chicagoans get out their winter coats.

-40F (-40C): Washington, DC runs out of hot air. Chicagoan let the dogs sleep indoors.

-100F (-73C): Santa Claus abandons the North Pole. Chicagoans get frustrated because they can't start "da car".

-460F (-273C): All atomic motion stops (absolute zero on the Kelvin scale). Chicagoans start saying, "Cold enuff for ya?"

-500F: Hell freezes over. The Chicago Cubs win the World Series

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Uber quick

Going to Florida for the weekend, won't be back til Tuesday. May post while I'm there, but no pictures. Taking a buttload of knitting and spinning. Got some roving in the mail today. New yarn, can't show you right now. Au revoir!