Showing posts with label february lady sweater. Show all posts
Showing posts with label february lady sweater. Show all posts

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Episode 29: Losing All My Buttons

Off the Needles
Fimbrethil by Bethe Galantino of The Worcester Knitting Company for the Dreaming Pickle Pot Lord of the Rings Club called There and Back Again.

On the Needles
2 Categories of WIPs:

1. WIPs slowly moving into Hibernation: Herringbone Cowl, Jo March Mitts and Cladonia/Rock Island/Summer Flies Shawls

2. WIPs: Larch Cardigan (I thought I lost my buttons! Turns out I may be losing my marbles, but let's hope that I haven't lost all of them), Darjeeling Socks and Botanical Garden Shawl (a test knit for Kristen Finlay of Skein Yarns). 

Spin Right Round
Song of the Spinning Wheel by William Wordsworth
The Spinning Wheel by John Francis Waller
Spinning in myths

Knitting Finds
Online lace stitch dictionary
Post-Tsunami Japan and Knitting
Knitters Curiosity Cabinet by Hunter Hammersen
 Olympic Yarn Bombing! Still a mystery.
 Frostlight Scarf by Robin Ulrich
Lady Edith Shawl by Karrie Steinmetz

Knitty Spring 2012 - check out the Carousel socks!

Swatch and Learn 
Thank you so much for the donations for the fledgling knitting club. I also read aloud the final draft of "Lessons in Sticks and String," which is a little different from the one I originally posted.

Thanks for listening! 
"Diaspora" by Glykeria (English Translation)

Smirni (was a Greek City in Turkey), Canada
Ah!You have left far away
I hurt!

One headed for Australia
the other very young boarded the ship
Turks and Greeks in Germany
(working) all day and night in the factories!
Building a new society

it was worth the crop
My soul is moving
It makes more seeds!

One, washing dishes in Astoria (New York)
The other a captain on the ships
Greek young people neglected
build the ruins
They worked for you and I!

One headed for Australia
the other very young boarded the ship
Turks and Greeks in Germany
(working) all day and night in the factories!
Building a new society

One, washing dishes in Astoria(New York)
The other a captain on the ships
Greek young people neglected
build the ruins
They worked for you and I!"

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Episode 22: A Knitter Grows in Brooklyn

Off the Needles
We finally have an FO! Two of them actually, since I haven't really talked in much detail about the February Lady Sweater.
Another FO that I have is the Bramble Beret. It was such a slog to finish that thing because I made the mistake of knitting DK yarn with size 8 needles - never again.

On the Needles
I decided to knit through a PD (professional development) meeting that I had on the Saturday of the freak snowstorm that we had on October 30 - I brought the Dionysus socks and almost got done with the first sock.

I cast on for 2 projects even though I said to myself that I will not do so unless I finish all the projects in my PhD bin. In my defense, 1 project is due to necessity and another is a test knit. The necessity project is Bella Mitts from THAT movie and before anyone asks, no it's not because Breaking Dawn is coming out in theatres next week.

The test knit is actually a test knit of yarn - Roman Hills 4 ply worsted weight yarn which is called Gruber in Toasted Marshmallow. Its very wooly in feel but knitting up in the Snapdragon Tam pattern very nicely.

Knitting Travels
Last Sunday, I headed on over to Brooklyn General for a twitter knitter meetup: Kristin from Yarngasm as well as stitchmistress, knittingknoobie and riaknits were all tweeting about a meetup and lo and behold it happened! It did make me realize something - until I became a serious knitter, I never really went into Brooklyn, especially the northwest part. I only went into Bay Ridge for the in-laws and even then never really left.
Another knitting travel comes from my dad, who went to Greece for the first time since 1998 for three weeks. I sent him on a yarn mission in Thessaloniki to Noulikas, located at Vasileos Irakleiou 15, where he picked up some Maxi-Maxi from Mallia Molokotou which is a 100% wool yarn made in Greece. He even tried looking for yarn from his hometown but said via a phone call to my mom that it wasn't that great.

Knitting Finds
Kristin from the Yarngasm podcast has started up a new knitting blog called Knitnook and I had the honor of being the first interviewee! She focuses on new knitting patterns and etsy finds as well as interviews and I had alot of fun anwering the questions.

Another knitting find is Kate Davies' website and online knitting magazine, Textisles

Thanks to the people at Potter Craft, I have The Knitter's Book of Socks by Clara Parkes of Knitter's Review to review this week for you. It retails for $30 USA and $34 in Canada.
 We also have a look at Jane Austen Knits, which I picked up at the twitter knitter meetup at Brooklyn General.
Closing song: You and Me by Zee Avi

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Episode 20: Mitosis

On the Needles:
Nothing much new to report...still working on the Cladonia and the February Lady Sweater - now that I am out of HPKCHC, I do not feel the pressure to knit the Cladonia and to finish it immediately. That being said, it is still my lunchtime/happy hour knitting.

This weekend is a three day weekend and the principal and the AP in my school told me a bunch of really positive things about my job. In fact the principal told me that i needed to relax and that she is proud of me, so I am definitely taking their advice this weekend! As such, I really want to finish the February Lady Sweater for two reasons: one, Rhinebeck is next weekend. Two, my coworkers are finally realizing that yes, knitting is cool. I think this is because now that it's getting chillier, I am wearing my hats and Traveling Woman shawl; they see it and I am getting a really positive response, if a bit still mixed.

Spin Right Round
This week, I didn't get much spinning done - in the way spinning is normally done. The kids in my class were learning about mitosis this week, and when I read in the lesson plan the words, "spindle fibers" I had a eureka moment. I go to my co-science teacher and say, "I have a crazy idea." The crazy idea was, use the three drop spindles I own, some yarn, 11 kids, me, name tags and visually and kinesthetically demonstrate the stages of mitosis. Using drop spindles.

Knitting Finds
Through the world of twitter, I have discovered a new indie dyer - At Knits End Yarns by Kim Hartmann. She dyes using Kool-Aid and it comes out beautifully! She also has some really great bases such as Sparkle Lace and Falkland sock yarn which I have not seen as an available base. She is going to be part of The Fiber Connection booth with Oblivious Knits and others at Rhinebeck next weekend.

Knitting Travels
There was a pretty decent Groupon offer for School Products Yarns in the Garment District - since this is a three day weekend, I knew that if I didn't go this Saturday, I wouldn't go at all. My mom came with me since we had other errands to run together after and I thought it would be fun for my mom who is a non-knitter to see what yarn shops look like.

This week, we are taking a belated look at KnitCircus Fall, and Teeny Tiny Mochimochi by Anna Hrachovec.

KnitCircus is jam packed with so many things that make me happy: first, interviews with Jared Flood and Felicia Lo of Sweet Georgia Yarns. There is a really great feature by Wendy Johnson about designing your own lace cowl.  There is also an article on colorwork.

There are plenty of sweaters for both men and women which provides alot of versatility and variety throughout the collection. Some of my favorites include the Sunshine and Fog Tunic, and the majority of the Lacy Goodness Collection such as the Turning Point Shawlette and the Mica Cowl. Ruckle is a really interesting hat because of its contruction with pleating and puckers knit into the body. One of my favorite things about KnitCircus is that they usually end with a recipe: this time, its Candy Apple Scones.

You must get Teeny Tiny Mochimochi if only for one reason: it will make you feel happy just ging through the book. If you are interested in knitting up the mochi, there is great reference information at the beginning of the book to help you with toy construction, and at the end, ways to display and use the mochi in various ways throughout your daily life. It retails for $19.99 in the US, and $22.99 in Canada. 

QAL Update
25 FOs so far in the FOs thread and lots of great and supportive chatter here. Come join in on the fun! You can submit an FO at any time, so long as it fits the criteria for the QAL (at the top of the QAL Chat Thread) and is submitted by December 31.

Since there is no formal Subway Knits Meetup, I will be at the Ravelry Meetup from 12-1 at the field by the main gate. Most convenient for everyone.

Stephen West is having classes, book signing and trunk show for Westknits Book 3 at The Yarn Company on the Upper West Side.

Closing Song: "A Postcard to Henry Purcell" from the Pride & Prejudice soundtrack.

Friday, September 30, 2011

Episode 19: For the Love of Color Cards

The school year has started! My kids are a bit crazy at times and I am feeling overwhelmed and trying to find my feet, but the knitting helps.

On the Needles
There has been a bit of a stall with the knitting lately simply because school has started. That being said, I have cast on for the Cladonia and  getting a little bit of it done here and there and it is very good subway knitting. I am knitting the Cladonia in a light fingering, heavy laceweight yarn - Gherkin's Bucket MCN Cashmere in a custom colorway called Saucy.

I have seen a lot of Cladonias done both with the stripes and without and personally I prefer the solid color ones - for me they are more classic. Then again, it depends on what color combination is chosen - my friend Christy is also knitting one and she is using Jabberwocky from Fresh from the Cauldron which is a bright purple and red with black and gray. We were talking about what should be the contrast color and I was insisting that it had to be the black because the other 2 colors were so bright.

One thing that I found so far with the pattern is that I have alot of yarn and the shawl still seems pretty small; what I plan to do is double the stitches for the increases from 28 to 56, so that way it can be nice and big.

Working on the sleeves of the February Lady Sweater. After doing two repeats of the gull lace, I began to gradually decrease those extra 7 stitches that I cast on at the underarm to make the sleeves more fitted and less swingy. I am thinking of ripping out the bindoff of the body of the sweater and going back a bit because I think I knitted it a bit too long and it hangs right at the hip where I want it to be, but that is when it is unblocked. i really don't want it to get any longer so eventually be totally out of shape, so that will just take an hour or two to fix which isn't so bad.

What is very exciting about almost finishing the February Lady Sweater is that I finally was able to pick up my buttons from the post office. I ordered the English Script buttons from Howbeadyful on etsy, which are handmade fabric covered buttons. When I took them out of the package, they were WAY bigger than I had anticipated. I was concerned that they wouldn't fit through the button hole but they did! They are definitely "statement" buttons since they are a light color and pop against the dark blue of the sweater, but I like them.

I am planning my next sweater for once I also finish the Castle Pullover, which is where color cards came in.

I was planning on designing a cowl to submit to KnitScene, but unfortunately it didnt happen b/c i was so busy. I still have the idea in my head, but its on the mental shelf at the moment. I did get yarn for it from Quince and Co - I purchased Lark in twig and storm and also ordered the color card for the company. When I got the skeins, I knew I wanted to knit the sample of the cowl in twig, but wished it was really in chanterelle b/c its a wee bit lighter, and would show the cables more.

The colors were a bit off on my screen, but this is why i was really glad i got the color cards. I also ordered the color cards from Beaverslide Dry Goods - who I have had my eye on since I became a knitter bc Brooklyn Tweed was one of the first knitting blogs I read back when I was in Japan and he kept mentioning them alot "back in the day" around 2007.

I wanted to get the yarn for the melrose peacoat, but was having a hard time getting the right shade of green. I ordered the 3-ply McGill Meadows from Beaverslide, but when I received it, it was too bright of a green to go with the buttons. However, I ordered the color cards as well and thankfully, there was a shade of green just above it: Marsh Sedge. I never thought about it, but I put the button next to it and it WORKED.

Stashers Anonymous
The beaverslide dry goods yarn wasnt the only thing I purchased as of late. One the knitters in Ravelry posted a picture of Wollemeise Klappersnatch and Bluebell in one of the threads, and I just went gaga over Bluebell.

The other something was the Pick Your Poison club by Apothecary Yarns. Pick Your Poison is inspired by herbs that are poisonous and others as well - there are colorways called hemlock, wolfsbane, and ones called cyanide and strychnine. They are all on the superwash merino sock base, and you have great options: either one skein for $23 or two or more for $20.

In addition, you can buy the whole set of 9 colorways for $160. You can also mix and match and get things like 2 of one color, 1 of another, etc.  In addition each "concoction" of 2 or more skeins comes with 3 stitch markers from Velvet H ippo. Signups end October 1, so if you are interested, check it out.

Two things two review today: Shades of Green pattern e-book and Wendy Knits Lace by Wendy D. Johnson. First, a thanks to Erica Jacksofsky of Fiddle Knits Designs who graciously let me join in on the fun for the podcast tour of Shades of Green, and to Potter Craft for sending Wendy Knits Lace for review.

Shades of Green is a collection of various types of patterns utilizing various types of yarn weights ranging from sport to bulky. All of the patterns are knitted in a shade of green, hence the title of the book. There are various types of patterns spanning all different categories: shawls, sweaters, babies, socks, etc. There are patterns for cup and cellphone cozies and even for men as well.

The whole collection retails for $18 in PDF format and $20 in print (with a digital copy included). If you purchased the patterns individually (which you can do if you only like 1 or two of the patterns from Fiddle Knits or Ravelry) all together they would be $40.

However, if you want a chance at winning your own PDF copy of Shades of Green, leave a comment below on the blog stating which pattern would you want to knit. The deadline for posting your comment is October 9, 2011 at 10:00pm EST.

Now onto Wendy Knits Lace. What really caught my eye was the cover. More importantly, the shirt that the model was wearing - love it! And love how it works with the lace scarf. There is great styling done throughout the book and overall, it serves as a great reference and pattern book. It retails for $22.99 USD.

After the first day of school, I was exhausted. Still, I went to the talk by Anna Hrachovec at Lion Brand Yarn Studio. Lots of fun and it was nice to see her again. Check out the slideshow of the pics here. I took tons of pictures of all the cute mochis at the event:

It is now confirmed: I purchased the tickets to Rhinebeck. Hopefully there will be a meetup with Kristen of Yarngasm and the Savvy Girls.

Knit the Queue Along: QAL
So finally am getting around to posting the guidelines and prizes for the QAL!

1. There are two threads: the QAL Chat thread and the QAL FOs thread. The latter is no chat because your post number is the entry number for the RNG.

2. The project that you submit to the QAL FOs thread must have a queue date. This can be found on your project page on the lower right hand corner of the page, it will say, "Originally Queued: Date Goes Here." To be fair, since I haven't posted anything about the QAL on Ravelry and am doing it now and the idea of the QAL is to knit off the queue, not add more to it, there is a deadline for projects that can be added to the queue, while will be October 1. If you submit a project that has an "Originally Queued" date after October 1, it will not count for the QAL.

3. WIPs are not allowed. Again, the idea is to knit off the queue and generally speaking, if you click the "Cast On" button from the queue page, it will be a new project.  Everyone who has posted an FO so far has a project start date after September 1, so that would be the cutoff date. If you did start something off the queue after September 1, you are fine.

4. You can submit as many FOs as you like (explain how someone suggested a system where people who knit sweaters can get more points but for the first go round, I want to keep it simple. However I would love to implement a chart/points system which is very teacher-ish, explain 25 book campaign and october sky for things like hats, sweaters, etc in terms of the effort and time put in). 

5. The end date for QAL Round 1 (because I want to make this an ongoing QAL, but this will be the end date in terms of drawing for prizes) is December 31. Get your Christmas knitting off the queue too!

6. Have fun! The guidelines are meant to make it fair. This is the first round, so for now I want to keep it simple but I am open to suggestions and will make adaptations and such as necessary.

1. 3 copies of the Terpsichore pattern by Kara Hoover
2. Skein of yarn (base TBD) in the colorway our choice from a selection by Apothecary Yarns
3. Stitch markers from Velvet Hippo
4. Skein of yarn and corresponding pattern from Creatively Dyed

For a total of 6 prizes thus far. If I have spoken to someone about prizes specifically for this round of the QAL (as I would love to give out more prizes for Round 2 and so on) please contact me, or if you are interested in donating, let me know.

Thanks for listening!

Closing Song: "The Cave" by Mumford & Sons from Sigh No More

Friday, September 2, 2011

Episode 18: The Double Whammy

Discovered a new podcast: Knit. Spin. Cake. Check it out on iTunes and her group is here.

On the Needles
Still working on the February Lady Sweater, but now at the garter stitch hem of the body. I see the end in sight! Last night I ordered buttons for the placket: English Script Fabric Covered button at Howbeadyful on Etsy.

I also ordered the Cabbage Rose buttons for my next sweater which is the Melrose Peacoat from New England Knits. That will be part of the Study Hall for the Harry Potter Knitting and Crochet House Cup, which I have re-enrolled in so to speak.

This past weekend, my knitting was at a crisis point in terms of it being all over the apartment and being disorganized. So I dumped everything onto my desk from my WIP bin which I have not touched in months and reorganized everything.
I also tidied up my yarn vase as the yarn cakes just collapsed: I have this tall clear vase that I got when I received my wedding bouquet, which was resting on the top and I was wondering what to do with it. I have some Lantern Moon needles that I don't really use anymore but are too pretty to stick in the yarn towers so I wound up some coordinating skeins, chucked them in, stuck the needles through the yarn cakes and had room to fit in a spindle that I had lying around as well.

One project that I did rescue from the widespread knitting explosion was the Bramble Beret - almost done!

Off the Needles
I finished the Norie hat! But I clearly must have knitting brain fart because again, I introduced another "design element" - from rows 67-83, it says to repeat the rows of stockinette and the cat's paw lace for the final lace repeat. It's snug and very warm; loved knitting with handspun.

Knitting Finds
Terpsichore pattern by Kara Hoover inspired by the painting “Terpsichore: La Muse De La Danse.” Overall a clear pattern and well written. The one critique I do have is the initial photo of the project - it was a bit fuzzy so I couldn't see what the pattern was like and was unsure of it, but when I saw the other photos that are provided in the pattern which can also be seen by clicking on the projects tab on the pattern page then you get a better sense of the pattern in real life.

Pinterest has taken over my life. But the way that it relates to knitting is that for one many designers are on pinterest - the only one I have found so far is Stephen West and Arianne Caron-Lacoste of Falling Stitches - so you can see what inspires them and hopefully you.

But most importantly for now at least are these pins of color palettes created by Design Seeds. I also found some great ideas and things related to knitting, such as using plain wooden clothespins to hold and store extra scraps of yarn.

Knitting Travels
Last week Mel and I went to Turks and Caicos for a short holiday. We got hit by Irene. It affected our 2nd and 3rd day of the trip which were the only full days we had, though we did get out of the city and did get some sun and relaxed. We definitely plan on going back: Turks and Caicos is beautiful.
 I got a decent amount of knitting done - the lace edging of the Rock Island Shawl was perfect beach knitting. I did bring my February Lady Sweater on the plane with me and got a bunch of the body done on the flight down - and during the hurricane.
 If you ever go to Turks and Caicos, you must try 2 things: first, rum punch. The second thing is conch fritters which is the muscle from the conch shell and they make them into small deep fried balls and the restaurant at our resort served them with spicy mayo, tartar sauce, lemon and lime. I liked them best with the lime. We kept ordering them every chance we got b/c for sure this is one thing that we will never find in NYC.
On Thursday morning we were able to get some beach time in before our flight which was delayed so I worked on the Norie hat in the airport. However, Turks and Caicos follows the TSA rules here in the US - I saw signs from the TSA that had the website so I didn't have to deal with security asking what my knitting was. Then again, the airport which is very tiny, was so crowded, hot and hectic that I think knitting needles were the last thing on peoples' minds.

Overall though it was a lovely trip and a wonderful, low key place to visit - the people there are really nice. Hopefully to make up for Irene we are planning on going back over Easter break.

Then there was round two of Irene - hence the double whammy. NYC shut down the public transportation system and instituted mandatory evacuations for low-lying areas for the first time in history which was admittedly a bit freaky. Having seen what Irene did down in Turks and Caicos I was a bit concerned about up here. Thankfully, it wasn't that bad, but there was flooding in my area over by Astoria park and I keep seeing on the news whole towns upstate and in Vermont being washed away which is upsetting. I spent most of that weekend watching the news nonstop and knitting the Bramble Beret.

Swatch and Learn

While working on the Rock Island, I taught myself a trick of keeping track of how many repeats I did because I forgot my phone, which has the row counter. I have the KnitPicks magnetic chart holder, and used the medium sized magnet to keep track of what row I was on. I placed the smaller magnet to the right of the chart at row 1 - this indicated the first repeat I was working on.

I moved the smaller one as I completed repeats - the lace edge has 8 repeats and while i didnt make it to the 8th I did wonder as to what to do when I did reach the 8th and ran out of rows - the answer was to put the magnet on the left side of the chart. Granted, a pen and just ticking things off works as well too but since i Was at the beach, there were no pens to be had and I didn't drop one in my project bag.

In addition, as a result of working on the Bramble Beret, I finally figured out how to do the 2-1-2 left leaning cable, and created a tutorial.

Next week, Anna Hrachovec of Mochimochi Land will be at the Lion Brand Yarn Studio on September 8 doing a talk and book signing for her new book, Teeny Tiny Mochimochi - its by RSVP only so if you are interested, do call the store to see if you can still sign up. I will be there so do come up and say hi (I am still a bit shy).

Rhinebeck - it IS confirmed, I am definitely going on Saturday for more reasons than one but that will all be revealed by the end of October. So, I am still wondering if people are interested in a meet-up.
Do post ideas and thoughts in the thread for the festival.

Amy Christoffers of Savory Knitting (who designed the Larch and the Acer cardigans) is offering 100% of the proceeds from patterns sold from September 1 - 5 to the Vermont Farmer's NOFA Emergency Fund.

Still working on some of the details for the Knit the Queue-Along so we will start after Labor Day officially. In the meantime, go ahead and post any related chatter in the thread for the QAL.

Closing Song: "Sand in My Shoes" by Dido from Life for Rent

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Episode 17: Pattern Binge

On the Needles
Because I left my February Lady Sweater in my parent's car on Sunday, and there was a miscommunication between my dad and I about him coming by so I can get it back, I didn't get the sweater back until Wednesday night. I was still traumatized by the Snapdragon Tam and wasn't up for much else, so I decided to cast on for a pair of Dionysus Socks which is a free pattern, using Knitsch Fingering Weight yarn in the colorway Mansfield Revisited.

On Friday night, I cast on Norie from The Shetland Trader by Gudrun Johnston. Inspired by seeing the version by Rachel of the bmore crafty blog - join the Small Knits Knit-A-Long on twitter by using the hashtag #skkal.

Knitting Travels
My mom, sister and I went to Socrates Sculpture Park on Wednesday night to see Biutiful with Javier Bardem. It has an outdoor cinema - the most popular and well known cinema is at Bryant Park where there is the big race to grab a spot on the lawn, but there are other locations as well.

This is where I tried to knit in the dark for the first time; granted it wasn't pitch dark b/c of the film and general NYC light pollution but it was dark enough to try it out.

Hung out with Abby at Knitty City and after that we had lunch at this vegan cafe called Peacefood Cafe - first time at a vegan restaurant but the food was pretty good. As a result of eating there, am doing some research about sheep shearing and treatment of sheep. Sheep do need to be sheared, lest they look like Shrek, but the fleeces do get heavy and can cause them to overheat.

Knitting Finds
I did go to Knitty City with a mission - I needed some wooden circular needles to prepare for my trip to Turks and Caicos this Monday. I like wooden needles, though I do make exceptions for my signature DPNs and also, the ChiaoGoo metal lace needles that I picked up at MS&W. GreenTriangleGirl from A Playful Day podcast also talks about them as well in a recent episode. ChiaoGoo also has wooden circulars, made of Moso Bamboo.

Jared Flood recently came out with Wool People, a collection of patterns by various designers highlighting the Shelter line.

Interweave Knits and Knitscene Fall are out, but except for 1 or 2 patterns that I would wait for to be published individually, aren't really worth it.

Anyone up for a Fall-Winter Knit-A-Long? More specifically, a Knit the Queue-A-Long. We all have patterns clogging up our queue and I would like to start up a new KAL so that we can get those must-want-to-knit patterns off the queue and into the projects page. More details coming soon - for now, I would like to see who is interested.

Closing song: "The Summer Wind" by Madeleine Peyroux from Half the Perfect World

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Episode 16: Chicken and Rice

Off the Needles
Towards the end of my program, I was getting severe startitis. I also really really wanted to knit from my stash and just do something with my hands other than write fake lesson plans and write on chart paper during summer school. I needed a reprieve. How does one get a mental reprieve?

Well in my case its finally completing your first knitted FO from a Japanese pattern book, called "Favorite Aran Knits." I knitted cap #7 by Mariko Oka which I call my "Sea of Japan" hat - partially because it is a Japanese pattern, and partially because I knit this up in Fresh from the Cauldron Merino Silk Worsted in Poseidon which is a lovely blue-green sea color with a bit of shimmer.

Two things really helped me with this hat: I finally purchased "Clear and Simple Knitting Symbols" which had most of the cable stitches, but not all of them. However, the cable in the Bramble Beret from Vintage Modern Knits is the same one in Cap #7.

I also completed another Turn a Square for a classmate of mine who asked for one very nicely during the 6-day seminar that I attended immediately after teacher training.  In exchange, he bought me lunch. More specifically, Dominican Food. I never had Dominican before so I picked a basic chicken and rice platter at a place in Harlem near where our seminar was located. It was SO good.

But this experience begs the question: what do I do in the future if someone asks me for a knitted object? What do you guys think? Any tips for deflecting future requests?

On the Needles
I cast on for the Rock Island Shawl by Jared Flood. I want to have a few more shawls in my wardrobe and give the Traveling Woman a bit of a break. I cast on for the lace edge in Creatively Dyed Sami in Fresh and  Persimmon Tree Farms Piggy Toes SW and I saw this lovely forest/hunter green and sky blue yarn.

I worked on this mostly during a seminar I took the week after my program ended - it was mainly about how students have all different ways of learning and there are neurocognitive causes for that and the students have strengths and weaknesses in these certain areas, like memory and attention.

So why am I mentioning this? On the first day we did introductions - and as part of my introduction I mentioned that I am a knitter and participated in a cognitive study at Columbia University last fall which examined the link between doing repetitive tasks (such as doodling or knitting) and attention and retaining information.

I said this for mainly one reason: if I am going to sit in a chair for 6 hours for 6 days, I am going to knit. Otherwise I will go bonkers. So this was my way of politely declaring it and also asking for permission - I wanted to get a sense of what their reaction was - which was really positive!

The man in charge of the entire program for the NYC Department of Education talked to me about how his grandmother knitted and that there need to be more studies on the connection between memory/attention and knitting. One of the facilitators put down "Knit, sketch, purposeful movement" on our guidelines and norms for the week.

This experience reminded me of the Miss Manners article about knitting in public that came out a few weeks ago and fired up all over twitter.

Knitting Trainwrecks 
I did get the February Lady Sweater back on track - bit of an issue with the cast on of the 7 underarm stitches when separating for the sleeves. 

After I finished the Sea of Japan hat,  I casted on the Snapdragon Tam by Ysolda Teague.

However, last Sunday was a day of epic, epic, fail. Not just knitting trainwrecks, but life fail as well.

That Sunday, I am happily knitting along on my Snapdragon Tam and just about finished. I noticed it was coming along 2:45 - its a 20 minute walk to my yoga studio and I really wanted to go to a particular class at 3:30. So I race to complete the last two rows, cast off's too big. This time, it involved...FROGGING.

So that happened in the 5 minutes before I had to leave for yoga. To top it off, while walking to yoga, my flip flop broke. I missed yoga.

Spin Right Round
A very minor update here - of rather what did not happen during the Tour de Fleece. I was a part of Team Sasquatch and was off to a great start - I finished the first ounce of polwarth that I purchased from Gherkin's Bucket in the colorway Motley. Plus, I even got to spin while watching the actual Tour de France when they did the recaps that fourth of July weekend.

My goal was to spin at least 15 minutes a day - but what I didn't anticipate was feeling so tired during the course of my program that when I got home, I needed those 15 minutes either to sleep a bit more or do the assignments that I had to do and submit on time.

I am definitely going to finish up that braid and came to a realization - I really do enjoy spinning. But man is spinning on a spindle slow. I'm going to have to start saving up for the Lendrum, which I will be able to try again  at Rhinebeck! I am 90% definitely going for sure that October 15 (it will be 100% once I purchase the ticket).

If anyone else is going and will be around that Saturday, do let me know b/c I would love to plan a small meetup and get to meet you all.

Knitting Finds
I must be very strange because for the most part, a lot of the fall knitting patterns are not that appealing. This is why I didn't look at the new Twist Collective when it came out lest I be tempted, but overall this is actually a good thing - I can use most of this season to catch up on my queue and knit from my library.

Knitty First Fall: Double Heelix, Lingerie, Dragonwing, Bosnian (this last feature and pattern goes well as a companion piece to an article in Knitty from 2006 about the History of Knitting).

Twist Collective: Boundless, Evendim most of the Spirited Away section such as the Hawthorne Hat and Mitts, Sheepcote and Loure.

Twist also had some really great articles on seaming and the last wool mills in Ireland

People have been talking about Google+  lately and there are a lot of knitters on there which is another great way to network. There is also a knitter's database that is being compiled so that you can share your information and join in on the conversation.

Finally, I want to mention a blog called Falling Stitches, which is run by Ariane,  a French Canadian knitter living  Montréal. She has some great designs and one of my favorite things about her blog is the What's Hot on Ravelry Series.  Definitely want to knit one of this week's selections, called the Imogen Cowl.

Thanks for Listening!
Closing Song: "Big as the Sky" by A.M. 60

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Episode 14: Beware the Ennui of May

 Off the Needles

Will talk about the Cabled Feather Cowl next week; but I did finish up the Ripley.

On the Needles

I have been battling a bad case of ennui or something similar to writer's block where you want to write something but don't know how. I think in my case knitter's block is similar but it is as if you want to knit, but then do not have the energy to knit anything at all. After MS&W I decided to spend a Sunday morning going through my stash and sorting through it which probably was a bad idea in the long run; I also decided to see how it would look when organized into the color wheel for fun - I have ALOT of blue and "neutral" colors - cream/gray/brown.

i carry ur heart was not a good project to help get over ennui - same project + same yarn = very boring. I was afraid of the Bramble Beret because of one cable stitch, but finally figured it out! Going back to the basics with the beginning of  the February Lady Sweater.

Spin Right Round

Spinning up some polwarth in the "Motley" colorway from Gherkin's Bucket using my Dyakcraft Swan Spindle. Abby Franquemont's book Respect the Spindle is really helping with perfecting my drop spindle technique. Also grabbed the DVD for 10 cents during the Interweave Special!

Knitting Finds

Focusing on Twist Collective Spring & Summer 2011 this week.

I have mentioned Slipped Stitch Studios before when they were featured in Knitty Winter 2011, but only on the Mi pattern Saver - if you check out her etsy shop, there is more for fiber artists, like really well-made project bags, one of which I received as a birthday gift.

Events and a Knit-A-Long

It does sound far off but when I mentioned I was going to Rhinebeck this fall, I made a mistake. I have to go to a wedding that Sunday. And I will be teaching Saturdays. Boo. But, there is another local fair nearby which is the New Jersey Sheep and Fiber Festival September 10-11 in Ringoes, NJ.

How is everyone doing with their Rose Lace Stole? I'm a bit behind but do plan to spend an afternoon with it sometime this weekend.


Closing Song: "Dog Days Are Over" by Florence + The Machine from Lungs
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