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

June 30, 2011

Thursdays are for What the Hell is This?

I give the sincerest thank you to Kim K. for sending me this week's post's material.

Nothing new in Mens' fashion, you say? You're just not trying hard enough. There are plenty to colors and shapes to explore. Literally.

Very reminiscent of this Yves Saint-Laurent.

What else is there to say but thank you, Kim K!

June 26, 2011

Super Seattle Sunday

We really took advantage of one of the first nice weekend days this year. This morning we headed to the Ballard Farmer's Market where we got fresh produce to make pickles (beets and radishes), a baguette and some cheese curds. We also stopped to listen to Caspar Babypants.

It's Chris Bellew of The Presidents of the United States and you can find him many Sundays busking at the market. He's fairly awesome. There were a lot of toddlers rocking out to his music. My favorite was when he played Nirvana's "Grandma Take Me Home" which was suddenly really different in the performing-for-children context.

We spent some time exploring Ballard and I got City Walks: Seattle 50 Adventures on Foot. When we got home I found this note of the Phinney Ridge walk.

Knitters should stop by well-stocked The Fiber Gallery, an inviting yarn store.

We're famous!

We decided to walk over to Woodland Park to throw a frisbee around and then, once we were there, went to the zoo. For once I made the kids go see the animals I wanted to see. Older Son spent much of the time trying to act too cool for the zoo but Younger Son had a lot of questions about the animals. We had planned on dinner at home but instead just rolled down Fremont Ave and had a delicious, though enormous, dinner at Uneeda Burger. Then we waddled home.

We are all completely exhausted but what a great day.

June 25, 2011

Bake Sale "Pies"

No, there's no bake sale but younger son got What's New, Cupcake from the library and wanted to make the "Bake-Sale Pie" cupcakes. The book is filled with really cute, inventive decorating ideas but I was mortified to discover that there are no cake or frosting recipes in it. They want you to go to the store and buy cake mix and cans of frosting. No thanks.

We used Rose Levy Berenbaum's definitive Cake Bible and Martha Stewart's Seven Minute Frosting. If I had more time I would make a Swiss meringue buttercream because the Seven Minute Frosting does not love to be in a piping bag. It gets kind of foamy. Swiss meringue isn't any more involved but it takes a long time in the mixer to get to the right consistency. We also had to hunt a bit to find all red M & M type candies that don't have anything stamped on them.

They're cute though.

June 24, 2011

Fall Knitscene Preview

Okay, you guys did not seem to care for the IK Weekend preview. How do you feel about the new Knitscene?

June 23, 2011

Tiny Dinosaur

Pattern: Tiny Dinosaur from Teeny Tiny Mochimochi
Yarn: Cherry Tree Hill Supersock and Kogiu KPM
Needles: US1 Crystal Palace DPNs
Notes: The legs! Oh my God, the legs. How I struggled with picking up stitches in the right places and making tiny i-cords that looked nice. I ripped and reknit the legs over and over. I finally gave in and now have a fairly wobbly, off-kilter dinosaur. I also struggle with not pulling out bits of stuffing when I embroider on a toy. I didn't realize how badly I'd done until I saw the photo blown up on my computer monitor.

Knitting these little curiosities from Anna's book is so much fun. Like a vacation from my knitting life.

Thursdays are for What the Hell is This?

Because I just can't leave it alone I'm bringing you more designs from the Hoth Collection.

The Hoth Cowl.

The Hoth Scarf which includes an ingenious use of a spare spinal column you might happen to have lying around your ice cave (or whatever people live in on an ice planet).

And speaking of ice cave, here's the perfect accessory to dress up your davenport.

And finally what is described as a beer can cozy. I'm not sure anyone, no matter how thirsty, would have the emotional fortitude to drink something wrapped in what appears to be an ancient talisman warning of grave danger. It's the next best thing to a puff of green smoke emanating from your drink in the shape of the skull and crossbones.

June 20, 2011

Tiny Record Player

Pattern: Tiny Record Player from Teeny-Tiny Mochimochi
Yarn: Koigu KPM
Needles: US1 Crystal Palace DPNs
Notes: Fun! Fast! Cute!

June 18, 2011


Infomercial on Green Lantern: The ring can be used to make anything.
Older son: Why didn't they use it to make a better movie?

Dyeing as if the Earth Mattered

I finally got a chance to take a dyeing class at Earthues today. We dyed several types of yarn with several natural dyes including indigo. I always enjoy trying something new in a class setting first. Natural dyes aren't too complicated but they are definitely more involved than the acid dyes I usually use.

This is Madder root with Myrobalan after only a short time in the dyepot. The color developed over several hours into a very rich reddish-orange.

Here is Osage with Weld.

We also made learned how to make an indigo vat. The process is a bit involved but it produces such great color. We overdyed some of the Osage-Weld dyed yarn.

Indigo reacts with oxygen. To create even color once the yarn is dyed you need to spread it out so that all the indigo in the fiber gets in contact with the air.

We dipped some undyed yarn in the indigo for a few minutes. It comes out of the dye green then quickly starts to turn blue. But underneath there's still green hidden.

Which quickly turns blue when exposed to the air.

Here is Indigo over Osage-Weld, Logwood with Quebracho Red (this was a class favorite for its intense color), Madder-Myrobalan (see how it changed from the photo above?), Osage-Weld, and Indigo alone. Not pictured is the Cochineal which was still simmering in the pot.

These handles for the yarn are plastic coated copper tubing. The yarn skeins are looped through this handle making it very easy to rotate the yarn around from the top of the pot to the bottom to allow for even heating which gives more even color.

I bought an indigo kit to bring home. I am so in love with the colors that it produces. Now I just want to pull out all my fiber and start dyeing!

June 16, 2011

Thursdays are for What the Hell is This?

After being together now for over 20 years I hope Wes is happy that when I looked at these "boot" I thought, "Is this what girls wear on Hoth?"*

And when they're wrists get chilly riding around on a tauntaun.

*Full disclosure, I did still have to Google for "tauntaun empire strikes back" to find the name of the planet.

June 14, 2011

Interweave Knits Weekend Preview

I saw the hard copy of this one in Columbus and I really like it. I don't love every single pattern but there is a nice variety and some of my favorite designers. I know many of you feel disenchanted with Interweave. What do you think? See anything you like?

June 13, 2011

Goodbye Columbus

I'm sitting at a bar at the Columbus airport waiting for my flight home from TNNA (the National Needlearts Association trade show). I've had several days of yarn and fun and a lot of work and walking. My trip did not start well. My flight from Chicago to Columbus was cancelled before I even got to O'Hare. I sat through two attempts at stand-by and a third flight was cancelled before I checked into a hotel for the night. Friday morning I finally made it to Ohio. I had missed my class but instead got to spend time with knitting camp buddies, Ann and Kathleen.

I won't do the endless name drop but a lot of great yarnies were here and I had a great time meeting them or seeing them again. It will take me some time to process what I saw. I can't say I saw any really strong trends other than bulky, super-bulky and super-humongo- bulky yarns for fall. I've ordered a lot of nice yarns and accessories for fall.

Wish me luck for uneventful travel home!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

June 9, 2011

Thursdays are for What the Hell is This?

Sometimes the model's face says it all.

"How can I look cool when I'm dressed like the world's most colorful Lowland Gorilla?"

June 7, 2011


Looking at a project on Ravelry. Glance at the yarn used, think, "I've never heard of that before, must be foreign." The yarn was called "No Lable." Can I claim to be thrown off by the misspelling?

June 6, 2011


This is a completely normal amount of tape measures to own, right?

June 5, 2011

Daphne and Delilah

Pattern: Daphne and Delilah by Rebecca Danger
Yarn: Rowan All Seasons Cotton (just under one skein of each color)
Needles: US5 Addi Turbos and dpns
Notes: The only change I made on the pattern was to use paired decreases for the top of the heads instead of k2tog only. I would have used safety eyes but I don't know who will get this toy yet and didn't feel comfortable with safety eyes for a baby. I am, sadly, terrible, at embroidering eyes. The pattern really didn't have any information on how to sew on the arms. I realized once I was done that I had sewed mine on in such a way that they stick straight out from the monsters' bodies.

June 2, 2011

Thursdays are for What the Hell is This?

People, it has got to stop. This whole "dress up a sleeping newborn in whatever weird stuff we can think up because they're little, can't stop you and sleep a lot" is just wrong. It's the baby equivalent of writing all over your friend's face when he's passed out drunk. It's just plain mean.

Don't tell me this kid isn't going to be gunning for whoever did this to him/her later in life.