Friday, December 31, 2010

New Year, New Shoes

Bring on the new year, new projects, new love, and some kick-ass red shoes. Happy NewYear, everyone!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010


While the holidays are a wonderful time filled with gifts, rushed knitting, relatives, Christmas cookies and more football than anyone should ever watch, it gets lonely. When you're single (and not because you want it that way) you feel the pang all year round when you check facebook and five more friends have gotten married or engaged in the past few days, or when you go to the family Christmas party to find yourself as the lastsingle girl. Seriously- my 12 year old cousin was telling me alllllll about her new boyfriend (it is weird to be jealous?). I have developed coping mechanisms over the past few years as people constantly feel the need to remind me that I'm the last single Darling girl... (oh really? I hadn't noticed!) and while none of my methods are that great (recklessly ice skating, compulsive baking of cupcakes and baklava, taking hateful cats to get their picture taken with Santa at Petsmart) there is one coping mechanism that I really need to boot.

You guessed it- OCO. This painful condition is short for "Obsessive Casting On" and can vary in degrees from random-new-hat (mild) to 2-new-sweaters-4-new-scarves-and-12-new-hats-while-thinking-about-3-different-shawls (acute). This holiday season, it's especially bad. I took a picture of approximately one third of my new projects because I'm flat out ashamed of my 12 weak moments that have me stressing out about knitting again. Seriously- I'm stressed out. This sucks.

But let's start with happy things. This is my new shawl and even though it's quite small, I'm calling it my tenth shawl of 2010. I love it and have already worn it a ton. I'm trying to tell my mom that she needs one for V-day because I totally want to make another. Anyhoo, this shawl is called Annis-seed, pattern in Annis from Knitty, I used beads instead of nupps but made no other modifications.
And...a potential pattern! I made this after I saw something similar at Kohls. Yarn is Alpaca With A Twist Surino (brand new!). Stay tuned for more info on this, like whether I'll ever weave in those ends or not. Also keep in mind that the sweater is much too big for the model and the real pattern will come in more sizes than this one...
Weak moments...
And in unrelated news: there is a cheetah in my Christmas tree.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Christmas is for weaving

Wow it's been a while- sorry about that! I've had deadline after deadline over the past few weeks and haven't had time to sleep, much less blog. And even though I've still got quite a bit of work to be done by tomorrow, I feel like I owe it to you guys to get in a quick posting.

Happy Holidays! Yesterday for Christmas I got a loom! I spent a good chuck of yesterday putting it together with my dad and then making a warp using the legs of the dining room table while my dad pointed at the directions that came with the loom and tried to explain how nothing would work since I was doing that part wrong. I was weaving an hour later (yay! victory dance!) Anyhoo, I am using some Patons Decor (which may turn out to be a terrible mistake as it's mostly acrylic but we'll see- it's old stash and I could care less what becomes of it) and I wove for about an hour last night and a little this morning and went to get my camera to show off my new harp and....

Someone else decided it was their turn with the loom.
In other news... mini sock-blockers coming soon!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Nine....and a bit.

Today I thought I finished my tenth shawl. I have been working at my Annis with flying fingers since I started it on Wednesday night during Glee, beading and purling at the speed of light in that delicious Visual Purple. I took it to my knitting group today with hopes of getting just a few rows closer to the end and with the help of a good caffeine buzz and an extra long knitting session, I even managed to bind off at my knitting group withJasmine's moral support. And my newly finished shawl is.....way too small. It's fabulous, and wonderful, and beady, and by no stretch of the imagination could it ever be anything more than a scarf. It's still lovely, but I really wish I had knitted something else for my tenth shawl, that way it would have actually been a shawl. I guess the Paige-gauge was too much- and now the shawl is too little.
Since plan A, B, and C for 10 shawls in 2010 have failed, we move on to plan D. I just need to figure out what that is first. Wish me luck.

Friday, December 10, 2010


So....this List business. I've decided to make a couple amendments in order to salvage a wee bit of my sanity and make a few bucks on the side. I'm not totally abandoning The List, just updating it. For example, I have a sweater to make by January 4th. I am quite confident that it can be done, but it certainly can't be done WHILE going by the list, so for the sake of cold hard sweater-cash, I'm putting everything else on hold. Almost.

I'm still chugging along on the Christmas Tube. Some of you know what it is, and the rest of you will have to wait until Christmas, since I just found out that the recipient of the tube has been reading this blog. Anyhoo, after SnB last night (thanks Laurie!) and knitting through a movie this evening (when I wasn't biting my nails- Oh snap Harry Potter!) I am quite pleased to say that the Christmas Tube is a little longer- I only have about about 6 more inches before I can start working on the closure part. Luckily it is bulky and is going quite quickly. I bet it would go even faster if I would stop biting my thumb nails and just keep knitting. Christmas is too close to take a day off.
AND.....I have abandoned attempts 1 and 2 at shawl number 10 in hopes that a little bitty Annis from will be easier to finish within a reasonable amount of time. I started on Wednesday night during "Glee" and worked on it for a while last night, and have most of the tricky bit over with. I can totally finish that by New Years Eve. I think. Here it is so far, yarn is Dream in Color Smooshy from stash, I'm not sure what the color is because they don't make it anymore, and the beads are from a giant purchase of the wrong size beads ordered a couple months ago. So far so good!

Friday, December 3, 2010


Ask me how I'm feeling- I'm feeling victorious. It's Friday evening, I have a big gray cat passed out in my arms (she really needs some lovins since Lacey went back to Florida) and I finished shawl 9/10 for 2010. I can seriously get this done. I think. I'm currently (very slowly) designing one and if I'm not close by Christmas, I'll cast on an emergency Ishbel to finish or something.

But since typing is bothering Miss Sleepyhead and I'm not able to use my left hand and arm, I'll post pictures and be done with it.

Pattern: Sweet Honeysuckle Wrap
Yarn: Alpaca With A Twist Baby Twist, just shy of 2 jumbo hanks
Overall thoughts on the shawl: Boy I'm glad that's over with. I was not a big fan of that pattern. But here's my pictures...

Friday, November 26, 2010

Happy Leftovers!

Where has November gone?! I know! I spent it cleaning the house to get it ready for a couple showings and then Thanksgiving. I didn't even have time tobakemy signature red velvet cake! Crazyness! I did sneak in a little knitting when I stopped cleaning for the night (one can only breathe in so much bleach per day) and managed to cross one more project off The List. Here's Madeline's Pinwheel blanket, and it is very loved. This yarn has been in my stash since high school and I'm very happy to be liberated from it. I had about one ball leftover after the ruffle (I seriously underestimated how much yarn it would take) andit got passed around last Sunday until someone grabbed it- Thank you, M, you've done me a huge favor. Now to get rid of the other 8 sweaters' worth of stash yarn.
I also finished the first of Jo's Farrow ribbed socks, or as I like to call it, I'm halfway past the point of no return. It is thick, it is warm, and I really don't want to give it away! There is a good chance that by the time I finish the second, I'll never want to look at them again so that could come in handy.
Let's see...what else...I joined a swap! I picked up the last item today and ran to the post office to send it but they were closed so I'll try again tomorrow. Boo! I've had a great time coming up with little gifts for it and I really hope my person likes it! AND I've updated my etsy shop with some buttons and other things AND even had my first sale! So you should totally go buy stuff so I can buy more resin and make more buttons. I do have a couple more styles that I haven't uploaded yet, but I thought I'd take them to my knitting groups and see if anyone wanted any before I had to do that whole listing fee thing. That's all I've got for now- enjoy your leftovers! Because I totally had pumpkin pie for breakfast....and lunch.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Goodbye, beach!

Okay- I'm so enamored with the beach that I have to show you a couple more pictures and then I'll stop. Mostly because I'm back in Indy now and the only thing remotely close to a beach is a children's sand-box with a puddle in it.
And I got to go to a fundraiser! I know it sounds really lame, but I thought it was really fun. I got to go buy a dress (75% off! score!) and even bought a little head-bandey thing to go with my lack of hair. Thank goodness I took my just-in-case black heels- I never travel without them. And the best part? It was a fundraiser for the Humane Society, a cause of which I thoroughly approve. Where else can you get all dolled up and have your picture taken with a llama?
Speaking of animals, Madeline and Lacey did finally start to get along- they had about 2 days of hissing and slapping and then this switch flipped or something and they were BFFs. They play-faught for the rest of the trip and my mom told me that when Madeline and I left, Lacey kept walking around the house crying for Madeline. Madeline is laying down next to me looking all sad for herself, so it looks like it's mutual. Good thing Lacey is coming over for Thanksgiving- I'll be sure to share some cat-attack pics.

I feel like I'm forgetting something- oh yes. Knitting. And things of that nature. I took 2 knitting projects and a cross-stitch project with me to Florida, all things on "The List". For those who are just tuning in, "The List" is a giant post-it note with a list of all of the projects that I would like to finish in 2010 whether they're knitting, crocheting, rug hooking, or cross-stitching. It's a big list, but I'm chugging through it. I did have to add one itty-bitty little shawl because I'm going to be teaching another class soon and would like to have my own pattern ready so I don't have to worry about the rights and getting everything okay-ed and getting everyone paid. It's just easier that way- except for the whole designing part. But I'll get to that later.

Barter Socks
These socks are part of a trade: this woman will fix an old cedar chest for me that will someday hold my stash in it's entirety (which means I need to STOP BUYING YARN) and she would like paid for her services in socks. Which is just about perfect- especially since the yarn I'm using is stash. Anyhoo, the pattern in called Farrow Rib, which takes so long that if I weren't already past the gusset on the first one, I'd change patterns. That being said, it's absolutely perfect for Jo and is very squishy and should last a very long time. Yarn is Alpaca With A Twist Socrates in the Macaw color. Now if only I could find a dentist who would take a blanket for some veneers...
*This is my new sheep from Sarasota! I found her in a set of 2 at the Women's Exchange, a place that is either really fun or really terrible- depending on how long your mother wants to look at Dutch-made ceramics.

Hillbilly Sampler
I totally love my Apple Pie cross-stitch sample even though it's very country and doesn't really go with anything other than my love for kitschy decorations and making pie. I actually got quite a bit done in Florida- I found it very enjoyable to sit on the porch in the mornings and stitch while nearby lizards licked their own eyeballs. Very zen. Sorry for the crap picture- we've now hit the time of year when pictures must be taken before work in order to use natural light, which means little to no creativity in the photography.
Madeline's Pinwheel
I didn't take this one to Florida, but it is a current "List" item. I have a frogged sweater's worth of this color and I'd like to see it gone. Plus my little breakfast-enthusiast has outgrown her felted kitty bed and would like something nice and wooly for winter. Once again with the crap picture thing.
So that's it! I had a great time and can't wait to go down again in January to teach my classes!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Catching some rays and stitches in Florida

Hi there! Having a great time in not-as-warm-as-I'd-hoped Florida! I have already hit up 2 yarn stores and blown my vacation budget, but it was well worth it. I went to Picasso's Moon yesterday and bought a fabulous Batt in the Belfry since I just finished my second one and I'm in a little bit of withdrawal...
Isn't it cool? I'm trying to branch out with my fiber purchases- I'm really enjoying spinning off fibers but I find that making the plunge and actually buying them in the first place is the hard part.
I also picked up a little roving and some Noro-awesome at A Good Yarn on Tamiami. I love it there. It's like Disneyworld, but with yarn. So much selection and everyone there is just so I said. Love. Anyhoo, this Noro is going to be Lanesplitter from Knitty and this roving is going to be whatever it wants to be. I think it's merino like the stuff I bought there this past spring and loved spinning. I'm also talking with Susan, the owner, about maybe doing a couple workshops in January, and since I loved teaching at her shop this past May, I'm all for it!
That's about it so far...I did bring down my big cat Madeline who is not really getting along with my Mom's cat Lacey. Actually it's really the other way around- 3-pound Lacey is determined to beat my 10 pound cat up. Madeline is just a big furry pile of love though and seems a little hurt that Lacey doesn't want to be friends. Maybe Lacey needs a little attitude adjustment. Just sayin'...
And tomorrow I'm going to go hang out with my friend Alan that I haven't seen since Purdue Rep. Dance Company- he moved down from Purdue to USF and is only about 20 miles away so we're meeting up tomorrow- super excited! I may have to ask him about how he likes USF...maybe going back to school isn't the worst thing in the world anymore. Especially in a place with no snow or windtunnels.

Saturday, November 6, 2010


Wow it's been a crazy week!

I bought a car! This is Bumblebee, a 2010 (yay year-end clearance sale!) Chevy Aveo. She is awesome and drives a little like a go-kart, which is even more awesome. The Jeep died a terrible frame-bent death a couple months ago and after a good long time in denial, I found Bumblebee in Plainfield. She's the first car that's ever been in MY name, and it's pretty exciting. Plus she gets over 350 miles per tank which is pretty awesome.
I finished shawl number eight!
Pattern is Zetor Scarf, yarn is Malabrigo sock that I brought back from England a couple years ago. My stash that I accumulated over there is slowly disappearing but I think that this Malabrigo was well spent. Plus I hadn't really stashed since I was saving for a car but I love this shawl, I'm thrilled with it even though I did a lace pattern that was really not what I normally like to knit. And I'm really excited to wear it on Thanksgiving since it's very season appropriate.
I finished some handspun! This is the last of my Batts in the Belfry that I stashed this past March visiting my mom in Sarasota. It's a couple different types of wool, a bit of bamboo, and lots of sparkles, which don't show up very well on the picture. It's a smidge over 3 ounces and a hundred yards. I think it wants to be a hat.
And I'm going on vacation! I'm going to go see my mummy in Sarasota and catch some sunshine now that we're getting flurries and such. She's been telling all of her friends down there that I need a "Mommy-fix"...I'm not sure I'd go that far but if someone is going to pay for me to fly down to Florida, I'll take a Mommy-fix. Madeline will also be going because she will destroy my house if I don't take her. Plus we would like to start introducing my mom's cat Lacey to Madeline and Tubby Custard since she'll be spending Christmas here.

That's about it- I've got a bajillion things to do and this afternoon to do them. Stay tuned for the Floridian adventures of Paige and her yarn!