Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Xmas craft sale madness!

Here's what I'm doing this weekend:

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oopsy, that should be December 1st, not 2nd...I think I just grabbed last year's poster. But if you're local, all the details are HERE.

These craftsales are always an amazing event, and it is not without some melancholy that i'll be there this year, as it will be the FIRST ladyfest Christmas craftsale that I haven't been "selling" at. My partner in crime for these events has just had a baby, and these days there's just no time...

SO, no more sassy toilet seats, wall hangings, sparkle phones, and dollie gift cards for you. Unless you make your own of course. Or buy them from Workshop! Ahhh, remember all the stuff I used to make before I got so obsessed with knitting? --Not to mention all the books I used to read!--heh, glad that degree in literature has served me so well...

That said, I will try to make up for my serious lack of selling this year with some major purchasing! I can't wait, and I hope to see some of you there!

Not local enough for you yanks? In a similar vein here's where I will be the following Saturday (December 8th):

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It's a block from my hotel, so I can't very well pass it up, now can I? I hope everyone likes handmade things, cuz that's what you're gettin' this year! (either made by yours truly or otherwise...)

All the details for the craftacular can also be found HERE. It's at the Metropolitan pavilion in NYC on West 18th. I am seriously looking forward to getting my shop on in the coming weeks. AND, my hero, Amy Sedaris is going to be there!!!!!!!!!!

And speaking of Christmas prezzies, I've taken a page out of the Miss Muffy book and have whipped up some quick slippers from knit 2 together.

They knit up super jiffy-quick, and were great for stash-busting:

And then I went to felt them. Without a washing machine.

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I even added boiling water from the kettle and then proceeded to beat the shit out of them with a wooden spoon.

And what happpened?

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They got b-i-g-g-e-r.

Apparently me "beating the shit out of them" is the equivalent to a couple of kittens prancing around in the sink. Oh well. I shall be patient and wait until the weekend when I can actually get my hands on a washing machine and several pairs of dirty jeans. And then I can embellish them and make 'em all bow-tastic.

Apart from that the rest of my projects right now are kinda big but chugging along slowly and surely. I've abandoned all hope of doing any knit presents for my team at work. The majority of Chris-my-ass knitting right now is essentially for me. I was hoping to get that jade empire cardigan done in time for my trip to New York next week, but I think that might be a bit ambitious. I'm only about half done at this point. Fingers crossed my needles don't get confiscated so I can actually work on it on the plane.

Hope everyone's having a great week :)

Wednesday, November 21, 2007


My schedule has been *kinda* mental lately...and hence, a lack of posting in the last ten days or so. Even this week I continue to be trapped in another three-day training session at work, which normally would more than likely send me round the bend except that this is one of those very rare 8 hour day meeting(s) where I can actually just sit and knit. Though in today's case, sit and knit, and then rip back twice. I guess that's what I get for feigning interest in what the facilitator is saying--my knitting suffers.

So, here's Gretel:

(this photo is way over-saturated, sorry)

pattern: Gretel by Ysolda Teague
yarn: Noro Cash Iroha (wool, cashmere, silk & nylon) in #94 "teal"
needles: 4 mm

I thought the slouchy size of this beret would be a bit too big so I cast on for the regular size after SPLURGING on two skeins of Cash Iroha for it. (I won't reiterate what also popped into my basket that day --the shame, the shame of it all!)

And then DISASTER struck:

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What the EFF?!
Not enough freakin' yarn to finish it off. Grrrr.

So back I went to my LYS for another expensive skein. Again, I will refrain from telling you what also hopped into the basket that day as well. Oh ok, you talked me into it:

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I know it doesn't seem like much but two 60 dollar excursions in a row was starting to hurt. I blame all this swearing off buying more yarn that I've been doing lately. Clearly it's a serenity now situation for me. It just gets pent up until I EXPLODE and buy more stuff.

But then, Gretel was done and it was a beautiful thing.

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I had *almost* a full ball of Cash Iroha left. And what takes only one ball to make you might ask? Why fetching, of course! So off I went to make myself some matching fingerless gloves in this gorgeous yarn.

And uh, guess what happened then?

I'm so glad you asked...not enough yarn, AGAIN. Oh, cruel yarn why hast thou forsaken me?

What can I do with only one fingerless glove? Archie seemed less than thrilled with his new Abe Lincoln-esque stovepipe hat.

I know this face well. It is the face that says: "Why mum? why do you always do this to me?" Fortunately it is usually followed quickly by this face:

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The "I-give-up-take-your-stupid-picture" face.

Score one for me.

So guess what happened then?

You probably don't really need to guess, do you? BACK to the store I went for skein NUMBER FOUR. And was that all?

Well, I think you know the answer to that one too. NINE more balls for this:

Because much like my mother, I cannot resist a sale, now can I?


(though I'd be lying if I said I wasn't actually excited about all this new stuff on the sticks). I am however getting second sock syndrome with fetching's matching right hand--not to mention sensing the looming futility of fingerless gloves right now (we are supposed to get 15 cm of snow tomorrow...) If I don't take care of that pronto I may never.

Whoo, that was a lot of photos --that'll do me for another ten days, right?

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

dashing through the snow...

I don't know, does this still count as grey? Charcoal, yeah, that's the ticket, I'm done knittin' grey. right? right?
Ok, I lose. But this pattern's a winner.

pattern: Dashing from Knitty
yarn: stash bustin' Berroco Ultra Alpaca (50% wool, 50% alpaca) in "charcoal mix"
needles: 4.5mm bamboo DPNS
size: large

My man was away this weekend visting the fabulous Miss Muffy and HER man so I had a lot of knitting time on my hands. Actually I threw tons of stuff by the wayside in an attempt to crank them out in his absence, and managed to do just that. Earlier thoughts of saving them until Christmas were also dashed when I realized "yeah right, I can save nothing", so I pretty much just gave them to him when he walked in the door.

I'd also bought a fabulous new jacket while he was gone (I should never be left alone...) with 3/4 sleeves, so the day after I gave them to him I instantly confiscated them back so that *I* could wear them (and my new jacket) and not have cold forearms. But they are definitely too big, so I may need to make a smaller pair for myself. After Fetching though. Those are definitely up next.

I even managed to drag him onto the balcony for a grey-day photoshoot, so you get one more photo:

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Sunday, November 11, 2007


I've been a bad girl. I swore up and down that I would buy no.new.yarn (until I got to New York next month that is...) but then off I went to my LYS. I had a list. I had a plan. I got to the store and realized, I've left my list at work. shit. So what happened? why, pointless impulse purchases of course:

Though in my defense, I've already come up with some purpose for all of it (well, almost all...)

The two skeins on the bottom are Noro Cash Iroha in a nice dark teal. I hemmed and hawed over all the colours. There were originally some much louder colours in my basket, but in the end I went a bit darker. The entire time I was there I was uber conscious of my NEED to buy colours that were unnlike the usual stuff I'd go for (always with the cranberries, greys, browns for me it seems) so I think I did pretty good on that end. Also this new reddish do is making me question my usual colour choices, particularly for hats. SO, the Noro is for Gretel:

After I bought it I realized the pattern actually called for that Noro, but for the smaller version of the beret. My inclination is always for the slouchy version so I'm kinda torn now on which size to knit.

The pink stuff up there is Sublime cashmere merino silk dk in "tease". And man is it soft. That's the one thing I'm still not sure what to do with. Nevermind the fact that I only bought one ball (WHY do I do that?!)

The green is Luxury Alpaca Peru in a jewelly emerald green colour. Also a colour I would never normally buy for myself. I think I'm going to make fetching out of those. I think they'll be a good "one ball" killer. That and about 3000 other people on ravelry appear to have knit them so it's likely a good pattern. And speaking of fetching, the boy version, Dashing is almost done for my man. He's been away all weekend so lonely me decided to knit him up a little welcome back.

I dunno, me and cables? Not so much. In principle they are easy to do, but I find that mine always look a bit "off". Maybe it's just me. I haven't been able to determine whether there's actually a problem.

And the yellow? Mirasol cotanani (cotton & merino in "sunny"). Now that for sure was an impulse. I am such a sucker for almost anything with a social conscience (Manos anyone?) and Mirasol is also a fairly traded yarn supporting the children of peruvian shepherds. Portions of those purchases go towards funding schools in the Puno region. But I do have something in mind for that yarn too,

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And unrelated to my latest yarn debauchery, but still new on the sticks is Kate Gilbert's Sunrise circle jacket.

I think I may have FINALLY found a use for all that wool I bought for the Phildar swing jacket. My gauge says no, but so far I'm still saying yes!

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

my neck continues to be warm...

Now that I'm posting pictures of it, and having probably not mentionned it all before, it seems like this thing took no time to knit. *But* in actual fact, it's been one of my more annoying endeavours of late.

Oh sure, I'm all smiles NOW.

SO. I had this purty yarn called apple pie in a nice "aubergine". A little bit of silk, a little bit of mohair, merino etc. I loved it. I loved the colour of it. But I didn't want to have to buy more to go with it. And I also didn't want to make socks out of it like the majority of this yarn is no doubt used for.

And y'all know I love scarves and kerchiefs. So I cast my brain back to mah friend's simple beauty. Maybe I should try something like that?

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It's not really showin' so much in that photo, since it's all folded up, but her pretty pink triangle shape never happened for me. Mine came out more like a big 'ol u-shape. I wish I had taken a photo wearing it. It was essentially, a bib for a grown-up. And while not a day goes by where I don't get food all over me somehow, and could in fact probably really use an adult bib, I still didn't want to go there. So I'm not sure what happened ... I think I was missing a K2tog somewhere in there. I also tried another version of my own creation with additional eyelets that yielded similar results. Half a skein later and that too was frogged. Was I feeling frustrted at this point? Yes. Yes I was.

So off to raverly I went (you know, for the one billionth time). LOTS of complex lace shawls on there, but I didn't want a shawl so much as a big kerchief. Then on ravelry I found THIS pattern. The fact that no one else appears to have knit this thing should have been my first clue. But it looked promising so off I went. Now, saying that something is terribly off with this pattern would pretty much be the understatement of the decade. I ripped it and started again THREE times, before finally launching it across the room in a fit of despair.

Breathe. Back to ravelry. And my final "winning" pattern choice. Which you can find HERE.

I wish I could tell you that everything went swimmingly from that point on, but sadly, there was a mistake in that pattern too. It's like the knitting gods simply did not want me to make a kerchief in that particular yarn in any way shape or form. I wound up tearing that one back about three times as well. In the end it was an easy enough fix, the pattern was just missing a YO on one line. You can check my project deets on Ravelry if you need to know what that was.

In the end I showed that bitch who's boss:

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and that was all the yarn I had left.

I won't kid myself though. As with most eyelet-ty things I do, there are a whole host of boo-boos! But this thing is airy enough that a hole or two out of position and I was all: pffffft, what-ever. Those photos are all pre-blocking btw and it's actually much much larger now...

Archie helped me with the blocking process:

And by "helped" me I mean, was as annoying as any creature on this earth could have POSSIBLY been. Trying to eat pins, make a fort under the cardboard, burrow into the plastic and under the scarf. aaaaaahhhhhhhh.

Mom, what do you mean? I eez innocent...

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"I can has cheezburger now?"

Sorry I couldn't resist a little lolcat action there.

Anyhoozle, it's done and I like it. Though I washed it in a sink that I had previously cleaned with baking soda, and now it too reeks of baking soda, so I think I likely won't be wearing it again until I can clean it properly. Or maybe it's a re-gifter.

Actually in re-reading this entry about my kerchief drama, I suddenly feel mad at this scarf. I think I will have to ignore it until it buys me flowers and candy makes it up to me.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

more stuff, more stuff!

I am woefully far behind on my updatting. I have several things in the cue ready to be shown and I'm trying desperately to resist the urge to just cram them all into one post.

So I'll start off easy with a couple more pics of the cowl that I mentionned in my last post. So hard to get a good picture of this fuzzy black blob:

pattern: the cashmere cowl from the Purl Bee
yarn: Fable Handknit 100% pure baby alpaca in black (almost 2 skeins)
needles: 5mm addi turbos

Another boring knit (you may remember the the last one of these that I knit or even this one in the same yarn) furthering my theory that the simplest, most tedious knits are the ones that I will actually wear. This little number is no exception. In fact, I have it on right now. I will likely wear it endlessly this winter. I think I need to just accept that "exciting" knitting equals "shelved in my closest forever more" and be done with it. Give in to the 1x1 ribbing that this cowl is. give in to it. join me...you'll feel much better.

Anyone wanting to join me in the cult of snooze step right up! Soft, fuzzy and boring.

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Ok, so here's one more thing. Not for baby Marnie, but for baby Christine. The baby Marnie ones were in pink. But baby Christine, well we don't know if it's a boy or girl yet so I went with black:

These always knit up very cute, but I find them super finicky. SO many yarn ends to weave in on such a little thing. Especially the weaving in of the "laces" and the little tie that goes around the back to tighten them. There is nothing more tedious than an 18 inch I-cord on 2.5 mm needles. I bypassed that bit this time and just used regular old yarn.

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Anyway, you can check out the pink ones for any pattern details, I'm sure you've all seen them before. I just used all scraps. With any luck I'll never have to knit them again! The pattern is very well done though and they are by brooklyn handmade which you can find on etsy. She's also got some really cute maryjane ones too!

Much cuteness!

Thursday, November 01, 2007

at least my neck is warm...

Well it's been a whirlwhind of a week for me. I feel as though I've eaten at every restaurant in Montreal and Ottawa these last seven days. Who ever thought I could get sick of that?! I think there needs to be a lot of salads in my future...

Suffice to say that not a lot of knitting got done since my two partners in crime for the week are not knitters, but at least I did manage to get a couple of easy half-done items finished:

Another kerchief scarf from LMNG.

Most of you know that I am seriously trying to stash bust lately, and this kerchief seemed like a really good vehicle for a couple of balls of artyarns I had sitting around. And wow...I think I bought it on sale, so it was another one of those situations where it was a total impulse buy, and then you get home and think "ok, what can I do with these two lowly balls of yarn? uh, stash it and forget it." But it was perfect for a little project like this that is just a garter stitch triangle. I'm not really a fan of varigated yarns, but it works on something plain like this. It was pretty much the SPROINGIEST (is that a word?) yarn I've ever used. So squishy. I've never really knit with anything like it before. Though that is no doubt because I don't actually knit with or buy a lot of sock-type yarns.

And the yarn deets for those who need to know: artyarns supermerino colourway 115 (100% superwash merino)

And I was just about to post the cowl that I just finished as well, but as I look at these kerchief photos of myself all I can think is "holy god I need to colour my hair!" So I think a little trip to the drugstore might actually be calling my name instead. Though with my recent benefit makeup addiction, that might not actually be a good idea either (curse you lipgloss and laptops podcast for my newfound makeup addiction resurgence!). But hair colour, yes. I'm thinking about going red again. Okay, maybe auburn instead. Gah, who knows.

Well here's a taste of the cowl at least:

There really isn't anything I could explain about it that you couldn't surmise from that photo anyway.

But more on that to come. I have some serious bloglines to catch up on!