A blog about my life, knitting, and other stuff.

February 27, 2005

The Devil and the Little Yellow Bunny

Here's my hat. I left off the earflaps (no time). I like it flapless. I thought about adding an i-cord tail in the back but, again, no time.

This morning about ten minutes before leaving for work I saw this knitalong. I immediately bought Kate Gilbert's bunny pattern, grabbed some Cotton Chenille from my stash and cast on. I finished about six rows before I had to leave. I finished my first bunny, Mama Bunny size, watching the Oscars.

Then I stuffed the little guy.

Now comes my weakest department--stitching on the face. Boy, do I suck at this part. I won't even attempt it tonight. But check out Amy's cute little bunnies.


Late Friday night I found out that the party we were going to on Saturday had a "Heaven and Hell" theme. I was so disappointed. I told Wes that if I'd known about it sooner that I could have knit Devil hats for us. Well, I was lying in bed thinking about it. I was free to knit on Saturday from around noon, when my class ended, until six, when we were meeting friends for dinner. Six hours...plenty of time to make a hat. Or maybe two?

At work I bought some yarn and an extra pair of needles. I took myself out to lunch and started working on the hat. The first attempt at casting on (long-tail method) ran out of yarn about ten stitches short. So then I did a knitted cast on. Can't run out of yarn that way. I got to knitting feverishly. Everyone around me in the restaurant was asking me what I was doing. Pretty soon they were all watching my progress. Imagine how I felt when I realized, four rows of seed stitch too late, that I had twisted my cast on. I have never done that before. Grrr. Ripped it out and cast on again. Long-tail again because it's faster but I made sure I had about an extra yard of yarn for the tail. At one point the waiter came by and asked, "So is knitting really zen?" "Not right now!" Grrr.

After lunch I went around the corner to meet Supergirl Rebecca and some of her friends. Two more hours of frenzied knitting--fueled by caffeine. I went home to meet up with Wes around 4:30--our friends couldn't make it to dinner after all. I knit, knit, knit until we decided to go get a cup of coffee and see a movie. Knit, knit, knit. I finished the body of the hat while having coffee. Then I finished the first horn standing in line for tickets. I was worried if I didn't have it done before the movie started I wouldn't be able to enjoy the film. (I did enjoy the film very much. A Very Long Engagement. Beautiful movie.) Then we went out for a quick dinner before the party. Second horn complete.

I went to the party. Everyone said, "Great hat!" And I kept saying, "Thanks. I made it this afternoon." That was fun.

Pictures later, I promise.

February 26, 2005

Birch Revival

Yesterday during a trip to lunch, the book store and the grocery store with the boys I was able to cast on and knit the first two rows of Birch (that's cast on 299 stitches and knit two rows). And all of the angst, horror and drama from the last time I started the project was gone. The Kidsilk Haze is still really challenging to work with. It's like trying to knit with spider webs. It feels like it will drift away when you touch it. But I think I'm a lot more confident of my lace-knitting skills now. When I reread the pattern yesterday I thought, "that's it?" Of course, I'm trying not to get overconfident either. It's a big project. But so far, so good.

I also knit another Dulaan Project hat on Thursday. And yesterday I started a little pair of socks.

I'm off to teach my first class on the Big Sack Sweater. Then knitting with friends, then dinner with other friends and then a party! I'm a busy girl today.

February 24, 2005

What's Happening

I was feeling tired of tiny needles and long term projects yesterday so I grabbed some Debbie Bliss Merino Chunky and whipped out this little hat for the Dulaan Project. I ran out of blue yarn just before the second to last row. Oops!

I also finished the Broadripple sample sock in Koigu tonight. I started it as a demonstration in my Socks on 2 Circulars class but finished it to have as a store sample.

I am one repeat short of the half-way mark on my Backyard Leaves scarf which I finally picked back up again yesterday.

And lastly, I pulled out Birch and frogged the first few pathetic rows I knit months ago. I will start from scratch in the next few days.

February 22, 2005

These Socks are Made for Swapping

Hallelujah! The Sockapalooza Birch Leaf socks are done.

I think they are rather special. I hope the recipient enjoys them.

Today I also finished spinning the roving I dyed last week. As I was plying it, the old leather strap for the con rod broke. Fortunately I bought a maintenance kit last weekend so I just had to grab a screwdriver and replace it. The yarn came out so nicely. I don't know what kind of roving it was (it came with the wheel). It was so nice to spin and is just so silky soft and light spun up. The colors aren't quite as muddy as I feared.

Now my problem is thinking of what I can do with 50 grams (1.75 oz) of sport-weight yarn. I'm thinking a really teeny lace scarf. And I mean really teeny.

The Triumphant Return of My Panties

The Mon Petit Chou hipsters are done! I still need to get some ribbon for the sides. I don't think I'll make the bra since it's too small for me and I don't have enough yarn.

I struggled horribly to knit the front and the beginning of the back of these. But something clicked for me and I flew through the last 40+ rows in a day.

February 21, 2005

Seen on the Streets of Seattle

A woman, nicely dressed in a skirt and blouse, with fishnet stockings...and Birkenstocks. Only in Seattle... Manolo would have fainted in horror.

February 19, 2005

Two FO Day

We had a banner night last night at Rose-Kim Knits. I finished my Flower Basket Shawl and my handspun hat. I also ripped out the mistake in my Birch Leaf sock and am back on track.

Here's the shawl fresh off the needles.

And blocking. I chose to just smooth it out and not pin it. It was so much easier and the results are still very nice.

Here she is on.

And here's a close up of the yarn.

This is hand-dyed yarn from Red Barn Farm knit on US7s.

And yesterday I knit up a hat from my own handspun, hand-dyed Coopworth using this pattern.

And the cute decreases.

I was trying to make a child's size to donate to Ryan's Dulaan Project. I guesstimated that my yarn would knit up to 3 sts/inch on US9s and cast on 66 sts for the hat. I also didn't knit the hat as tall for fear of running out of yarn. I can only stomach that once a week. The finished hat just fits my (adult-sized) head but is a smidge short. Sort of beanie-ish. I don't know if I can bear to give it away yet.

And so long as I'm overwhelming you with photos here is a shot of the yarn I'm spinning from the roving I dyed.

Wes turned to me last night and asked, "Is getting a sheep next?"

February 18, 2005

Still Treading Water

My Flower Basket Shawl is almost done. I am half-way through the bind off but could not stay up a moment longer last night. I stopped looking at the clock after 1:30 pretending that if it wouldn't get later if I didn't see the actual time.

Then today I tossed my Sockapalooza sock in my purse and took it to a playdate. I whipped it out and knit away happily for a few hours. Until I remembered that I was supposed to start the heel--a few hours ago. I have to rip out the 15 rounds I knit this morning. It's too aggravating to think about right now. I'll do it tomorrow.

I also started knitting a little hat from the handspun I dyed this week. So far, it's looking good. I'll update with photos once I get the hat and shawl all done.

Another Butterfly

Anita's all done!

February 16, 2005

Inner Voice

We have all an inner voice--call it instinct, intuition or something more spiritual. When I started the last pattern repeat of the Flower Basket Shawl my inner voice said, "I don't think you've got enough yarn to knit this repeat and the edging." And I though, "Shut up, little voice" and kept on knitting. Of course, I ran out of yarn. Here's the shawl as of this morning stretched on the back of a dining room chair.

Here's how much yarn is left.

Sad, no?

Here's how much yarn is left as of ten minutes ago.

I ripped out the previous 18 rows. At least I thought I did. I ended up missing by two rows and am now tinking back. For the big rip I took the whole shawl off the needles--again--and just ripped away.

Some other inner voice was at play this afternoon. My oldest son is home sick with the flu. I was sitting in my office knitting on my Broadripple sample for my class feeling more than a bit bored. Suddenly I hopped up grabbed some of the white mystery roving I got with my wheel and the two skeins of Coopworth I spun a while ago. I stuck them in a big bowl of water to soak. I pulled out my cake decorating supplies and put a half-teaspoon of Wilton paste cake decorating colors in paper cups, added hot water and vinegar. Then I laid out a plastic wrap covered jelly roll pan and got out my crockpot. I squeezed the excess water from the yarn and put it on the plastic wrap. I sprinkled cake colors all over the yarn and wrapped it up in the plastic, stuck it in a big glass bowl and put it in the microwave. I zapped it for three minutes three times. Meanwhile I put an oven bag in the crockpot, put the roving in and poured the remaining cake colors all over it. I added a little extra water and vinegar. I put the lid on the crockpot and put it on high. I pulled the yarn out of the microwave, unwrapped it and rinsed it in some hot water. I spun it out in my salad spinner and hung it up to dry. The whole process took about 45 minutes. I turned the flash off to make the colors a little more realistic so it's a bit fuzzy.

Two hours later I turned off the crockpot and let the roving sit for about an hour. Then I rinsed it, spun it out and hung it up too. It dried very quickly. It looks a bit like some sort of very poisonous snake here.

I don't know where this sudden impulse to dye came from. But I'm very pleased with the results. The roving is much darker because I used a lot more dye. It also has a lot more brown because the colors pooled and mixed. The Coopworth has surprisingly little brown to it. The colors came out great. I think I will try to knit a hat from the Coopworth. I'm looking forward to spinning the roving to see what I get.

As a bonus, here's my current progress on my Sockapalooza socks.

Why? Why?!

I am two rows away from finishing my Flower Basket Shawl and I ran out of yarn!!! I can rip out the edging and the last repeat and reknit the edging or I can find another yarn to finish the shawl with. I'm going to look around at work tomorrow and see if I can find something I can live with. The ripping just sounds too painful right now. I'm also worried that my shawl is a wee bit small so I don't want to make it even smaller. Sigh...

February 15, 2005

I Want to Go!

I'm starting to see all the east coast bloggers (and some mid-western) get all fired up about the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival. I want to go too! It's probably a pipe dream but I'm curious to know from those of you in the audience who have been/are planning on going how do you usually get there, where do you stay, etc. The airfare to the DC/Baltimore area isn't too staggering. Accommodations may be the real deal-breaker. So give me your best tips. Help me make the dream a reality!

February 14, 2005

A Few Illustrations

Even though I feel like I'm running in place, my Flower Basket Shawl is getting bigger.

See. Last time it couldn't cover the entire magazine.

And here is a really blurry photo of my Broadripple sock in my purse as of this morning. It's an inch or so longer now.

Where Do I Begin?

So much to blog about today.

Saturday: After I left my class on Saturday I had to run a few errands. I was near Weaving Works and stopped in to scope out their spinning wheels. You see, on Friday, in the middle of my terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day I was inspecting my new wheel a bit and realized I could not find any marking on it that identified it as an Ashford wheel. I wasn't too upset because, Ashford or not, it's a nice wheel that I got for a very good price. But I was worried that I wouldn't be able to put a standard or lace flyer on it (since I've only got a Jumbo right now). I went online and researched and found my treadle rail length and orifice height are the same as an Ashford.

So on Saturday I walked into Weaving Works and there were hardly any wheels there. Then I remembered that there was a spinning class that day. While I was sniffing around the Ashford Traditional on the sales floor and realizing that my wheel looked different in a lot of ways, I saw a familiar looking woman standing next to me. It was Heather. She and Laura were taking the spinning class. So I went upstairs and said hi to Laura. That's where I saw a woman working on an older Ashford Traditional that looks exactly like mine. Big sigh of relief. I bought myself the maintenance kit and went home to oil up my wheel.

I also decided to take Marti's advice from Friday. I called some of my dearest knitting friends and managed to wrangle five of them into meeting me on Saturday night for a little knit therapy. We knit, we laughed. Just lovely. I worked on my sock from class and got the first few inches done. When I got home I pulled out my Flower Basket Shawl. I had run into a problem the last time I worked on it and hadn't figured it out yet. After an hour of tinking, knitting, counting and swearing I took a very bold step. I pulled the whole thing off the needles. I pulled out several rows of knitting and got the whole mess back on the needles. I worked on the next row and made sure I had all the stitches I need. Then I went to bed--at 1:30.

On Sunday was Sneak. We showed a very sweet, lively film called Divan by a very sweet, lively filmmaker named Pearl Gluck. I got to take Pearl out to a delicious dinner on Saturday with Wes and to an equally delicious brunch on Sunday while the film was running. Then we had a Q & A with her that went very well.

I worked a little more on Broadripple yesterday and on the shawl. I weighed my shawl yarn last night. I think I have enough to do one more repeat and the edging. If I don't, I will be pissed.

Sorry for the lack of photos lately. Getting the camera to talk to Wes's computer requires a whole voodoo ritual that I don't quite have down yet. I usually wait for Wes to come home and make him do it.

February 12, 2005

On the Upswing

Thanks everyone. I felt pretty self-indulgent laying out that pity party yesterday when there are people in the world with real problems. But what the hell. It's my blog.

A special thanks to Deb who sent me a cheer up e-card. It was very sweet.

After crying in my car last night things began improving (not citing any correlation between these). I watched a movie with Wes and worked on my second Sockapalooza sock. I have about four inches of the cuff done already. This one is really sailing off my needles. Ahhh.

Today I taught my first real class. I'm teaching socks on two circulars using the Broadripple pattern. I made everyone do a small swatch. I called it a half-assed swatch. I had them cast on 50-60 sts. Taught them how to set it up on two needles, join in the round and had them knit for a while. Then we looked at their knitting to see how they were doing on gauge. This took the first hour of class. I worried that I was wasting their time but two students were way off gauge and were able to switch needles before starting the actual sock. This also gave everyone a chance to cast on, set up their stitches on two needles and join in the round twice, which I do think is valuable. Then I helped them through the first few rows of the pattern. Then they had to go. They all need to finish the leg of the first sock this week. We'll see if that happens... I cast on a second time, joined in the round and knit one-quarter of my first row. I was too busy going around the table helping everyone else out. I need to do a lot of knitting on this by next Saturday. I forgot what a fun, easy pattern Broadripple is. I hope my students feel the same way. As always happens in a class there was a very wide range of skill and experience among the students. I hope the more experienced students felt like they got something out of it.

February 11, 2005

A Death by a Thousands Cuts

I am having a bad day. Every little thing is going wrong for me today. At least since after lunch. I spent two hours working on a special gift for my secret pal. After all the time (and expense) it's just not working. A total waste. Then my four year old comes into the kitchen to tell me he's "messed up" his big brother's bead collection. (There are hundreds of beads that my six year old has been sorting into separate containers for well over a year). I go into the living room. Apparently "messed up" means "poured all over the hardwood floor and mixed." I immediately go into evil hissing mommy mode and make him [Okay, I just killed a bug on my monitor and it has fallen into, and become logged in, my keyboard. That kind of day.] help me clean the damn mess up. He does and then I knock over the container we're putting all the beads in so we have to scramble all over the living room again to pick them all up. Then the toilet backed up. Then I went to get my older son from school. I can't even remember what triggered it but he got into a really pissy mood and we started to leave. He stopped on the sidewalk outside the playground and started to scream so shrilly that two other mothers came sprinting over to see what was wrong. We got home. More shitty behavior. The toilet backs up again. Then I announce I'm leaving. (Wes was home.) I am going to run some errands. I go to the post office to mail a package where they have an automated machine in the lobby that's open until 9:30. The machine is broken. I go to the mall to exchange a book I got as a present at Barnes & Noble. They will only offer me the discounted online price for my exchange but want to charge me full price for the book I want in exchange. In other words, they want to earn $7.50 because I don't have a receipt. For a gift. I looked at the woman behind the counter and said "Fuck that." Okay, I said, "Forget that" but I was thinking "fuck that." I left and went to the toy store to get Hullabaloo for the boys for Valentine's Day. No Hullabaloo. (It wasn't at B & N either.) I go to Land of Nod to get them Nok Hockey instead. It's been discontinued. I get in my car. I cry.

I see that I'm shifting tenses all over the place but damn it! I just don't care...

February 10, 2005

Secret Pal

Dear Secret Pal,
You rule. You are my kind of pal to get me something that I really wanted* and send it to me so quickly. What a doll. A million thanks. It's so nice to come home to an unexpected surprise.

*The Knitter's Book of Finishing Techniques and The Knitter's Almanac

February 9, 2005

Birch Leaf Sock

The first sock is done.

The color looks a lot lighter in the photo. I already started the second one today and am about an inch or so into it.

I also got myself a little Valentine's Day gift.

I rule!

Giving the People What They Want

Since I get so many hits each day of people looking for an image of Buckwheat (used in my June 1st post to illustrate why there was a photo of me without a head) I have decided to add the link to the side bar. I mean, why waste the poor folks' time?

February 8, 2005

The Agony and the Ecstasy

You know how I worked for two hours on Saturday on my Birch Leaf sock? Well, on Sunday, when I sat down to work on it I saw that I had completely screwed up several rows of the pattern. I ripped back several rows and then spent a very long time getting the stitches back on the needles properly and figuring out where I was in the pattern. So after two hours of knitting I was two rows ahead of where I started. Ouch.

But last night at Purlygirls I knit my little heart out on my sock and I'm just a few rows away from done on the first sock. Yay me.

I also got a giant box of fiber from an eBay auction. It's nicely dyed but poorly prepared. Not to mention full of bits of farm residue--spinner like to call all this straw, grass and god knows what else VM for vegetable matter. But when I hear VM I think poop. And I don't want to be thinking that when I'm handling wool because in reality it probably is full of poop too. I ran out to the pet store and bought some dog brushes to try to work this stuff into some semblance of order. The results are so-so. But it doesn't matter because it's spinning up to be a really beautiful and soft yarn although a bit slubby.

February 6, 2005

Yet Another Newspaper Article...

about how knitting is cool. But this one has me in it!

Man of La Poncho*

Dear Editors of Knit.1 Magazine,
What the hell is this? And why is it under "Urban Cowgirls?" And isn't this more Midnight Cowboy than Urban Cowboy?


*This post is for Wes who thought up the title.


I went to the shop yesterday to teach my Socks on Two Circulars class only to discover that it's not until next week. Well, poo. I had made plans to see The Aviator* with Jill later in the afternoon. So I stopped back by the house for a little while and then hunkered down at Cupcake Royale for a few hours before the movie. I worked some more on my first Sockapalooza sock (how long have I been knitting this thing anyway?) and my Flower Basket Shawl (over 200 stitches on the needles and miles to go before I sleep). After the movie we met up with Molly and another knitting friend for a yummy dinner at La Carta de Oaxaca. Worth the hour-long wait. Mmmmm.

Today I'm off to work. I have some photos still stuck on my camera that I will try to shake loose today. Or, if you're really unlucky, I'll post another movie meme--which I just learned is pronounced to rhyme with seam.

*The movie was wonderful but I had a few quibbles. The editing just didn't seem up to snuff. Thelma Schoonmaker has cut many of Scorsese's films (like my favorites Goodfellas and Raging Bull) but this film had some very choppy moments and continuity glitches. I also think Scorsese is far more exuberant in capturing Hughes the filmmaker than Hughes the plane-maker.

February 4, 2005

Dear Berocco Designers,

What the hell is this?

Yours truly,

P.S. Or this? Or this? Or this?

Reunited (and It Feels So Good)

Molly hosted a "reunion" party last night. As she put it,

"You know you've got one; a project that for eons has been half-finished at the bottom of a closet, stuffed under the couch, or in the back of the drawer. Well, February is for finishing, so let's get started! I'm hosting a little evening to be reunited with your knitting of old, be it three months or three years. Hopefully with mutual support we can make some progress on those "time out" projects. I suppose if you really have no neglected projects you can still come, but there will be no gloating."

I brought Sam and Mon Petit Chou. By coincidence Kate emailed me some Mon Petit Chou corrections yesterday morning. Kismet! The first thing I did was rip out the fronts of Sam. I didn't have the right needles with me to get started on that one right away. I pulled out Mon Petit Chou and worked on the back of the hipsters for a while but kept stalling out still in the same spot. I put them aside. When I got home I double-checked the corrections. I ripped out and reknit the same row several times over. I gave up and went to bed. This morning I emailed Kate saying that I was still stuck. She wrote right back asking how many stitches I had at this point. I ripped out the row and knit it again to get an accurate count. The damn thing worked! Why did it suddenly work when it didn't the last six times? No clue. But it worked and now I can move forward on it.

This leaves me with a huge problem. I now have seven current WIPs. I moved the Psychedelic Squares Afghan to the Back Burner section. But it's still so much I feel paralyzed by it all. I've been really good lately about not letting myself get into this situation. The only thing that has any deadline is the Birch Leaf socks for Sockapalooza. So they need to stay a priority. They're in my purse and I work on them a bit every day. And I love working on the Flower Basket Shawl, so I guess that will be my number two project. Do I just put the rest aside until I finish something? I'm feeling so excited ('cause I'm reunited, hey, hey) over working on Mon Petit Chou again. I don't know if I'll be able to ignore it. And Sam is just eating at me too. But my poor Backyard Leaves scarf...I love it so much. How can I abandon it? I need some serious knit therapy.

February 3, 2005

Secret Pal 4 Survey

1. Are you a yarn snob (do you prefer high- a nd/natural fibers)? Do you avoid Red Heart and Lion Brand? Or is it all the same to you?
I don't think I'm a yarn snob but I do like quality. I don't like acrylic much at all. Anything shiny, plasticky or squeaky sets my teeth on edge.
2. Do you spin? Crochet?
I'm a beginning spinner. I am tragically bad at crochet.
3. Do you have any allergies? (smoke, pets, fibers, perfume, etc.)
Perfume gives me a headache.
4. How long have you been knitting?
I've known how to knit since I was a little girl (maybe around 10) but I didn't finish my first project until a little over a year ago when I was 33.
5. Do you have an Amazon or other online wish list? Amazon.
6. What's your favorite scent? (for candles, bath products etc.)
Lavender, Green Tea, Mint
7. Do you have a sweet tooth?
Yes! But I'm trying to tame it.
8. What other crafts or Do-It-Yourself things do you like to do?
I make cold-processed soaps and toiletries. I have tons of scrapbook stuff but I never do it anymore because I can't put my knitting down.
9. What kind of music do you like? Can your computer/stereo play MP3s? (if your buddy wants to make you a CD)
Alternative rock--White Stripes, Foo Fighters. I have one of those little MP3 players that I use at the gym.
10. What's your favorite color? Or--do you have a color family/season/palette you prefer?
Burgundy, mauve, wine...I also love green.
11. What is your family situation? Do you have any pets?
I'm married with two little boys (4 and 6), a beagle, a cat and two hermit crabs.
12. What are your life dreams? (really stretching it here, I know)
To become a film producer and work with my husband. And for my kids to grow up actually liking me.
13. What is/are your favorite yarn/s to knit with?
Manos del Uruguay is a huge favorite of mine. I like to keep trying new things. I'm on an alpaca kick right now.
14. What fibers do you absolutely *not* like?
Novelty and component yarns, really fluffy or furry yarns.
15. What is/are your current knitting obsession/s?
Lace! Lace, lace, lace.
16. What is/are your favorite item/s to knit?
I think of myself mostly as a sweater knitter.
17. What are you knitting right now?
Backyard Leaves from Scarf Style, Flower Basket Shawl, Felted Floral Tote, Psychedelic Squares Afghan, Retro Prep, Birch Leaf Socks.
18. What do you think about ponchos?
Hate them. Let the trend die now. Please.
19. Do you prefer straight or circular needles?
20. Bamboo, aluminum, plastic?
Usually bamboo.
21. Are you a sock knitter?
22. How did you learn to knit?
From a little pamphlet that my mother had used to learn when she was little.
23. How old is your oldest UFO?
I still haven't sewn the buttons on to a toddler sweater I started in 1999 when I was pregnant with my second son.
24. What is your favorite animated character or a favorite animal/bird?
Krusty. Whales and sea otters.
25. What is your favorite holiday?
I don't think I have one. I'm not very into holidays. Maybe Chanukah?
26. Is there anything that you collect?
Vintage Fiesta (but not the red or yellow) and jadeite (especially canisters).

I love this new SP4 button!

February 2, 2005

Crochet Coincidence?

I just looked at the new Crochet Me and have to say that this looks a little too similar to be a coincidence.

Java a Go Go, published Spring '04

Jazzy Java Jacket, published today

Am I being cynical or is this a total rip off?

Another Butterfly Takes Flight

Judy has finished her Butterfly.

Also check out Em's. And Teresa's.

February 1, 2005

The Home Stretch

Wes should be home in 4 hours and 17 minutes. Not that I'm counting or anything.

I took some pictures over the last few days but, since I had my holiday computer "upgrade," my camera and computer are not on speaking terms. Wes's computer and the camera will speak, on occasion but it's a stormy relationship. It's takes a lot of coaxing and facilitating. After a few days and a whole lot of cursing I managed to download three photos. Sad, but true.

Here's my Sockapalooza sock as of, oh...let's say Saturday night.

Click to see the back

Since I took the picture I've made it past the heel turn and am now just beginning the foot. The end is sort of in sight...for the first sock. Luckily I have over a month left to finish the pair.

I took this picture of my Flower Basket Shawl...last night? Man, it's all a blur. Okay, sure, last night. Here it is with about six repeats done. Even though the pattern only calls for seven repeats mine will take many, many more for two reasons. 1) I believe my yarn is incorrectly labeled. 2) I am a dumbass. The yarn I'm using is labeled as 400 yards of sport weight yarn. To paraphrase Lloyd Bentsen, "Red Barn Yarn, I sell sport weight yarn. I've knit sport weight yarn. Sport weight yarn was a friend of mine. Red Barn Yarn, you’re no sport weight yarn.” Honestly this stuff (lovely though it may be) is thinner than
the Nature's Palette yarn I'm using for my sock. The patterns calls for lace weight yarn held doubled. I knew that sport weight would be thinner and would need to do more knitting. But I didn't swatch or stop to think at all and just jumped in and started knitting. So, long story short, I have a long way to go on this still.

In spinning news, I finished spinning and plying 2.8 ounces of the Coopworth last night. It looks very nice and is definitely the most consistent yarn I've spun so far--which isn't saying a lot. Today I got 6 ounces of Corriedale to play with. I keep looking at fiber online and realizing that I can drive 5 minutes to Weaving Works and get a better price on roving. Plus I can touch everything first and I don't have to wait for it to be shipped to me. They have quite a lot of spinning fiber. Corriedale, merino (and superwash), Faukland, finn, coopworth, lincoln, blue face leicester, silk, corn silk, soy silk, alpaca, mohair, llama, camel, baby camel, quivet, icelandic, shetland...on and on. Plus raw locks of rambouillet and other breeds that I can't recall. I don't really need eBay, now do I?

The Manolo, He Makes Me Laugh

Manolo the ShoeBlogger presents The Gallery of the Horrors.