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Archive for April, 2007

SP10

Dear Secret Pal,

Please check your fake email. I’m moving and I’ve sent you my new address.

Thanks,
Me

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The first sock attempt that went south. It was turning out far too large, so for now this yarn has been retired. This pattern is beautiful and will be tried again later on something of the correct weight.

The new socks in the Colinette shown above. They are turning out this really fun purple and green camo that’s a little weird but nice. Azlan is using the sock as a blanket in this picture. I have made the heel flap and now I’m ready to turn the heel this week.


This was the next project I was going to cast on, this cute yellow sweater in the purple Noro shown in the photo. However the yarn is too thick and will not easily work into this pattern, so…I’m looking for something to use this beautiful Noro on. If anyone has any idea…let me know!

And last, but not at all the least, my progress on the Knit 2 Together Linen Kilt. This is an extremely SLOW knit. I think it will be worth it in the long run, but I’ve been so tired of straight knitting that I can hardly stand myself. I’m finally to the 1×1 rib around the top…only three more inches of that, then the gusset for the elastic and the ruffle down the front, so…about two to three more weeks and this B* will be done!!! I am on my fifth ball out of eight, so I am encourage that I’m over half way done. Oh and I made the brilliant discovery today that I’ve been using US #4 needles and I thought I was using US #5! Good thing that this is a one size fits all skirt and I’m usually too small to wear OSFA so this may work out for me (sorry Mom)! This is Rory’s first appearance, she really was intersted in the fun flashy box that Mommy was carrying around, so here she is, dog and skirt.

And these two are doomed to love eachother yet. Azlan has been forced to stay inside to get used to being an indoor cat since we have sold our house and are now moving in with my inlaws until we head to Maryland. Here you see Aida and Azlan side by side at dinner time, they layed next to eachother last night. I think this could be the biggest amount of progress on this whole page!

So all of that is what I’ve been up to. Sorry for the long time no post or photo, I hope to get a little better about this in the future. This weekend, April 28th is the national public knit out, so I hope to get some good photos from that. If you weren’t aware of this it is an opportunity for all to flaunt their craft in public places. So everyone go out to your local square and shake what your mama knit ya!

Oh, and thank you SP10 for the email…I look forward to hearing from you more in the future! You’re my little secret knitting angel ;)!

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About Me

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In the last month I have done a rather lavish bit of yarn shop touring all over the area. I have visited (including my local dive) 6 shops in the last four weeks. I know, I’m a spoiled brat…however I feel it my civic duty to inform anyone who may live in this general area where to go and why…Below is my exclusive knit shop commentary:

Tulsa, Oklahoma
Loops – Loops is found in Eutica Square, so it’s fairly easy to locate on a normal shopping day and you can justify swinging by after a trip to the Gap or Restoration Hardware. This shop is very nice, it has a lot of sample pieces (as I think all shops should have), they also carry a good bit of yarn that isn’t really all over the place. I was most excited about seeing Suss yarns since I have the Suss wedding knits book that unfortunately only uses her yarn (why ppl do that boggles my mind, it’s obnoxious) I wanted to compare the Suss to other things that I could use as a replacement. However, they carried only about five or six types of Suss most of which I felt to be of the novelty variety…disappointing…they also carried a good amount of GGH (Rebecca yarn), lots of out of the ordinary Rowan, and quite a number of great patterns. However, there was a decent amount of the store that seemed a little dissorderly. Though everything obviously had it’s place, not all of one type of thing was together. Thinking back I think that it was more organized by type of yarn or season, rather than brand, which at the time was very confusing. The people that worked at Loops were not my favorite, though I know that it is in a fairly busy shopping center, please do not assume that I am an idiot and that I don’t know how to knit. That’s annoying…I am innocent until otherwise proven guilty. Also, please DO NOT hover and DO NOT put yarn in my hands or the hands of my companions.

Naturally Needlepoint and Knitting – This shop was in the process of moving, they are found on Lewis only about five to ten minutes away from Eutica. Though we did not get the chance to see their store in full swing and that we got the rare delight of getting everything at 75% off. It overall was a much better shopping experience than Loops. The women that work there are kind and knowledgable. They are not pushy, and assume the best of you. “Do you have ideas for that yarn?” That kind of thing. I would like to go back so that I could better review the store as a whole, but overall what I could see that they carried a lot of that was really nice was: Araucania, Colinette, lots of Rowan, Maggi, Habu, Noro, and a lot of others that are well known. I hope to make it back there before I move so that this review may be more thorough.

Little Rock, AR
Both shops located on Kavanaugh Blvd
Handworks Gallery – This was noted as the yarn boutique. The Creme de la Creme if you will. We were most excited about this shop. We pulled up, the shop was in a lovely victorian style house. We walk in….*crickets*…it was a disaster! There was tons of yarn in absolutely NO order. It looked as if it all had been thrown and wherever it landed is where it belonged. The back room of “sale” items was litterally all over the floor. The lighting in the place was terrible and completely not condusive to shopping. The only thing in the whole store that seemed of some order was Goddess yarns, which was the store owners line of yarn. Everything else was a true wreck. I felt nervous and as if I couldn’t get a grip on anything around me. I couldn’t buy anything because I couldn’t figure out what I was looking at. Nothing had prices marked on it, so if you wanted to know you had to ask, and the girls working there really didn’t know either. They themselves were a bit on the rude side (again acting like you didn’t know how to knit) and were not at all helpful. When they were around they hovered and the rest of the time they ignored you. When we got there one girl would walk around throwing up her arms saying “this is on sale, and this is on sale, and this might be on sale…just ask” and I’m thinking…on sale for what? I never did find out the answer to that question. Yarns that were listed on their website that they carried they didn’t carry and had in fact never heard of…hm…I pass.

Yarn Mart – This is a nice little store front shop. They also carry needlepoint patterns and threads. This shop was reasonably priced and carried some great stuff that I had never seen in person. They carried quite a variety of Manos, Twinkle yarn (which is lovely in person btw) Araucania, Colinette, and Louisa Harding. They had a better variety of sock yarn than I have seen in a while and the people were very kind. Overall I liked this shop…it did seem more like a store than a shop, but they had nice things, reasonable prices and a friendly atmosphere.

Conway, AR
Bella Lana – This is a beautiful lovely shop. It is a cozy little store front with wonderful friendly owners and employees that didn’t care how busy they were, they took the time to help you. They were having a sale to make way for new inventory, but regardless their pricing was decent and they had a fair amount of inventory. This shop is not as large as most of the others, but they carried most of your basics and very little novelty if any. They had a good amount of Rowan, Louisa Harding, Maggi, Elsebeth Llvold, and a few others, mostly of the under $20 a hank variety. They had no Manos, Colinette, Noro, hand/kettle dyed or homespun so it’s not the place to go if you’re looking for that. The shop itself is very cute was a very warm inviting atmosphere. They were playing Ella in the background which always makes me feel at home. It was an atmosphere to knit in.

Fayetteville, AR
Handheld Knitting – My shop…my hope…everything you need…

My dream is to one day have my own yarn shop. In my yarn journeys around lately I have seen obviously things that I like and things that I don’t. Things that I will mimick in my store and things that I will avoid like the plauge. But I have found that my likings are not the same as others. Please give me your opinions and stories. Tell me about tragic yarn adventures and tell me about what you think is the perfect yarn shop. Yarns that are a must have in a shop, and those that don’t really matter. Other things that dos and don’ts. Help me help you…

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Linen Leftovers

Dear Readers,

Yes, this is specifically to YOU…yes, you sitting there in your jammies blinking at the screen. You too, thought you could sneek a read on your “break” at work! haha! I have a request. IF you have used linen or a linen blend for any past project and you have some leftovers that aren’t quite enough to actually make anything else with, and they are taking up space in the back of your knitting stash that could be filled by a new ball of koiguu or malabrigo if you could only figure out what to do with it…I have a solution for you! I am taking up a little collection of these remains. I have an idea…a plan…but I need YOUR help to make it work…ok not really…but I don’t need a lot, but I need a lot of different colors. If you can help me out please post with an email address and the amount of scrap that you have and we’ll chat about where you can send the linen (or blend). Perhaps we’ll make this into a little contest that will be later determind for some type of yummy yarn goodie.

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A Breath on the Wind

Yesterday after my Coke fiasco I drove to knitting after work. When I pulled up to the little house everyone was sitting outside, spilling from the doors of the house, from the tiny porch and the steps on the lawn. They all were sitting laughing with their half full glasses of white wine. I got out of my car, the breeze was blowing gently through the new leaves of the oaks outside of the shop making a very small rustling sound that could only be heard behind the warm voices.
“There she is!” They all exclaimed as I walked up the path. A seat had been saved for me next to Lynda Jo. Some of the ladies said my name and I smiled and asked how everyone was doing, commented about their outfit, or jewelry and asked what they were working on.
As I sat there in that little wooden chair on the porch listening to everyones conversations (which included a lesson in feminine contraptions, which before last night I never knew existed) I felt a sadness start to wash over me. They were talking about Bikes Blues & BBQ, the towns annual big event, that would be coming up in October, they were talking about the party that the knitting store was going to have and as my eyes began to light up, I remembered that I wasn’t going to be here any more. They talked about trips that they could take this summer and various other things that I would no longer be a part of and I felt the most emense sadness. I have lived in Arkansas for nearly two and a half years and it wasn’t until October that I finally found a community.
There we sat an oddly diverse group of women (and Paul) coming from different corners of life with completely different ways of life and thinking with one common purpose. That purpose which has torn down barriers and built gardens, a purpose that has brought me to know some wonderful people who have left their imprints deeply in me.
When we move to Maryland in May I will be on the search for a new group with which to share my life. This new group, they can never be to me what my group is now. A group who does not let age and background (or foreground) tear us down.
I smiled as I fondled some of the new yarns that people were using. I laughed at the stories from the week and weeks past. We welcomed two newcomers and we spoke to them about how they had found us. And all the while I was greatly saddened. Not to say that I am not sad to leave my other friends here, there are many that I will miss. But moving my life, quitting my job, and starting over in a place that my eyes have never even seen does not bother me nearly as much as finding a new Monday night group.

On a completely different slightly more cheery note I have a mental disorder. I cannot seem to make myself do gauge swatches! I know…it’s terrible…but I just don’t do it. I get so excited, so impatient about starting something new that I just don’t bother with it. And I suppose if you used the yarn that the pattern called for that it wouldn’t be a problem, but 9 times out of 10 I don’ t do that. I use something seemingly comperable by hand feel. I know better, I work in an industry that just the slightest change in sizing, gauge and material contents makes all the difference in the way something fits or looks. But I just can’t do it…maybe some day someone will come up with a cure for my disease, but until then, if it’s too big or too small someone else gets it…so Mother, you do have a chance at my skirt!

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Progress and Poison


Above is the progress, however little it may be, on my skirt ruffle. This progress is shown in its natural environment amidst my page of notes about Starter and organic hangtags. I should claim that I’m doing research and should be allowed to knit all day. I’m hoping to get this ruffle finished up quickly this week and begin on the rest of the skirt, my only forseen issue is that I’m going to have to either line this or wear something under it due to the inconsistancy of the linen cotton ply.

This photo was taken only minutes before the poison of slow thinking happened. I was carrying on a conversation with my co-worker and unscrewed the lid to my Coke bottle. I set the lid down and as I pulled my arm forward to pick up the bottle I knocked the whole thing in my lap! I could see it happening in slow motion. I am now sitting in my own sticky Coke scented mess! I look like my water broke, or I had a rediculous accident…there’s a trail of Coke running down my leg onto my shoe, and to make matters worse it’s right between my legs! I got it on my chair, on my notes, on a project lying on the floor. And after getting somewhat cleaned up I opened the bottle again and whatever bit had settled on the groove of the bottle ran down my hands and face! I should go home! I had this kind of weekend and I fear that it’s carrying on to just be this kind of week!!!

Oh save me!

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