Thursday, April 27, 2006

Cheshire cat knitting

Will I look like the Cheshire Cat?

So..... I've been knitting this Shrug:
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with this handpainted loopy mohair that I got at the Sheep and Wool Fair last year and its coming out much more stripy than I thought it would. It really makes me think of the purple striped Cheshire Cat in Disney's Alice in Wonderland Here's a pic of the WIP... you can see that I'm making the sleeves longer than the pattern says. I'm also making them belled sleeves, and about 3/4 length - down between my elbow and wrist. .... So I'm you think I'll look like the Chesire Cat when I wear this? I was trying for charmingly artsy!

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Last night I made a wonderful surprise! I discovered and Harry Potter Crafts (Yahoo Group)! What wonderful things folks are making!! Its so inspiring and makes me wish I had more time and more time and more time... I'd love to make that big crazy crocheted sweater that Mrs. Weazley was wearing in HPCOS!

Saturday, April 22, 2006


This is actually my sister's cat - she couldn't take her to college, so she now lives with me (Catherine the cat I mean). The cat hates me - notice her paw as it digs into the pillow on the back of the couch while she watches me closely out of one eye, thinking, "don't you dare come near me or touch me or you'll be sorry!". She loves Sausage the dog, though, and sleeps closely above him like this on the couch. Often she lets her little arm hang over the edge of the pillow until it just touches his back, and then she strokes him with her paw while he's sleeping and she's half-asleep. If he wakes, though, he jumps up and growls at her and she quickly pulls her paw back and glares at him as if to say, "what are you talking about? I didn't touch you! You must be dreaming!"

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Friday, April 21, 2006

Knit Haiku

Ooooo Knit love!

I found this great Japanese knitting site while looking for language translators for my japanese knitting books...

It has patterns (some in English) and really beautiful and funny photos...and.... Knitting Haiku!

The full wool yarn skeins
in the shops
tell the autumn has come.

One more stitch...
One more row...
Ah..! It's dawn!

How many people have touched
with their cheeks
on this soft yarn skein?

I hate all these
15 rows
over the mistake.

Praising her work,
I mumble to myself
"I can do it, too."

Autumn winds
always drift me
into yarn shops.

and Not-Haiku:

Didn't you praise
the botchy scarf
knitted by the young girl?
How can you
give the cold
to my paramount sweater?

Secretly, I turned over
your new hand knitted scarf.
Did you know how I was happy
when I found a brand-label on it?

Saturday, April 8, 2006

Time flies, whether you're having fun or not

Wow - already Saturday and I haven't posted to my journal for days! This week has been such a whirlwind - I've been beating off the flu with a stick (and "Emer-gen C")every time it comes near, and I've been writing a manual at work: writing writing writing writing writing.....oh, and more writing. My hand is so cramped I'm worried I won't be able to knit this weekend! I bought my first ever Rowan knitting magazine and now I want more!!

On my way home from work I bought the Narnia DVD and some good beer: Sam Adams Brown Ale: "...notes of toasted malt, biscuit, nut, and caramel...this beer satisfies the soul..." Well, its not a spiritual experience, folks. For that, you would have to drink Mac & Jac (but unfortunately you can't get that on the East Coast of the US)!

Later, when I actually have something to say, I'll post a coherent entry. Now I must retire to the couch in the front room to eat donuts, sip hot chocolate, and read Volume I of Maison Ikkoku...


time flies like arrows...
fruit flies like bananas.

Tuesday, April 4, 2006

rain day

Today is a cold rain - almost feels like really wet snow - and I'm coming down with a cold and want/need to stay home today! I just want to cuddle under the comforter and drink tea and read a medieval mystery!

I just finished my first project from the new Crochet book by the same person who wrote Stitch ‘n Bitch: the Cupcake blouse. Its a really good fit (even though it looks funny in the photo; that’s only because I haven’t blocked it) - something I haven't experienced in crocheted items in the past, so I think the fact that the author is a knitter has definitely helped her shape garments to fit the body! I used a delicate self-striping wool sock yarn.

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I'm on a campaign to finish up all my WIPs so that I can jump into some Spring inspiration knitting without guilt! I got tons of yarn and knitting books for my birthday in March and want to make:

1. A long hooded cardigan (sort of like a bathrobe I can wear outside)
2. A lace work coral shawl - short enough to not get tangled up in my computer at work
3. The Branching Out scarf (from Frog Tree laceweight alpaca - ivory
4. A summer tank top from some variegated handpainted leaf green yarn, maybe the one from One Skein
5. A short summer capelet from one skein of Blue Heron Yarns "Confetti" in the colour: Heather
6. A One Skein Wonder or the short Anthropologie shrug or the pretty Bolero from Rowen's 'Classic Woman' from dark green alpaca

That will keep me busy all spring and probably summer too!

Will I actually follow through on any of this? We'll see! And this list doesn't include all the things I want to make for friends! (guess I'd better get started...)

Sunday, April 2, 2006

Yarn Colour, Tea, and April Fools

Yesterday a friend took me, as a late birthday present, to an undiscovered knit shop: Knit New London - full of many luxurious yarns and unusual pattern books! I went wild running my hands over the soft and colourful yarns and imagining all the things I would make!

My favorite new knit shop has to be Wild & Wooley on Bainbridge Island, Washington, though, in Poulsbo with its sea air. The center of the store has cushy chairs and couches and magazines to look through and a friendly cockatiel, while the perimeter of the large room is lined with yarns divided by colour, rather than maker or type. This has the effect of walking into a fabulous dream-like garden - a riot of colours and shades and is extremely stimulating to creativity. I'd bet that their sales soar just because of the way the shop is set up. If I base than on myself - I spent twice as much at Wild & Wooley as I spent at Knit - so much, in fact, that I had to borrow money from my friends!!! They had an absolutely stunning yarn that was hand-dyed locally and not sent elsewhere so it is unique. Another point for Poulsbo is the bakery nearby - where, in addition to bright yellow "smiley face" cookies, they have the even more popular blue-frosted Frowney cookies!

I am in the front room, pouring over the pattern books I bought yesterday and drinking tea - Pleine Luna, to be exact. The yard needs me to go outdoors and rake, cut, mulch, and generally tidy the debris of winter, but I find it very difficult to go outdoors into the yard by myself and since I'm the only one here, I end up neglecting the tidying. I must do it this spring though - there are so many flowers out there and old rose bushes too that will get choked out by weeds if I don't clear up the stray growth. I need to look at this as a spiritual exercise and an appropriate one for this Lenten season. Okay - I'll do one hour today and then reward myself by a trip to Borders!

I was completely taken in by a very funny April Fools Day joke yesterday! A clever (read = "evil genius") member of one of the lj knitting communities that I belong to posted an enthusiastic message that a certain yarn company that produces much-coveted but prohibitively expensive yarn (Noro at $22 a skein) was having a promotional giveaway of a skein of yarn per person on their website. She went through the whole process of telling us how she had taken their sign-in process then got a choice of colours and types for her free skein. She provided a 'clicky clickity" link for the rest of us to receive the same benefit while supplies lasted! Well...I (and about 50 other people on our list) quickly clicked the link and dashed to the finish line for our greatly desired prize - to find a BIG "April Fool's Day" hello waiting for us!!! We were completely taken in and amazing and dunbfounded by both her cleverness in providing the exactly right "hook" for our community and our eagerness to obtain a freebie! Ah, humanity!

Edit: PS....What a lucky day I am having! My new iPod made my work in the yard fly by!! And it was so enjoyable, I was out there for 2 hours before I even realized it. Must do this again after the next few days of rain...