Thursday, September 29, 2005

Bags are Packed, I'm ready to go....

Leavin this morning to fly to Detroit to attend the american Sewing Expo. All day tomorrow I will be sitting in a color workshop with Brandon Mably, the knitwear designer for Rowan who's worked with Kafe Fassett for years. Kafe will also be there, and is teaching workshops all weekend on quilting, which I am skipping in favor of more garment sewing related workshops.

City Knits, that knit store that got written up in Vogue knitting Fall issue is going to be there, and after I talked with them a few weeks ago on the phone, she said that she is going to be bringing out some pink cashmere blend yarn she has in a fingering weight, just for me to look at. ohhhh yummy.

Where is that no buy yarn pact I need to make with Laine? Oh, that's right, I emailed Laine back and said, "lets wait till Monday"

ok, must run
have a great weekend all

Michelle, Julie, Krissy and whoever else is reading: I'm down to the middle of the next decade! whooo hoooo.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Union Square Market Pullover, Started.

I cast on! Finally, for the Union Square Market Pullover.
I know that I wasnt' going to do that, until Ladywell was completely well and finished - ... but... well....I got impatient.
Ladywell needs one more armhole ribbing to be finished. Even all the ends are woven. But I really need to be in a place with good light, with lots of time, to pick up all those stitches and knit that ribbing. So, I did one armhole Monday, maybe I'll get another done this afternoon, and be DONE!

On to USMP
I used my grandmas crochet hook to make the provisional cast on. (pictured at left on top of the wine bottles. )
I have just a few of my grandmas knitting tools, and love it when I get a chance to use some. I have to say was challenging to use a crochet hook that didn't have a flat spot for the fingers in the center.

knitting up the hem.

Debbie Bliss baby cashmerino in dusty pink and apple green. I ordered the yarn from one of my 2 fav UK stores - Cucumber Patch. When it came, it was a dustier rose than the fuschia that I had thought it was - ok, take it downstairs to my nearly obscenely large fabric stash - didn't go with the black/fuschia plaid that I had thought to make this sweater for - but...
Alleluia! It went with this rose wool jacquard that I bought in Toronto in 1977. Perfectly, Beautifully.
I've been holding on to that wool - such an intricate weave structure, such a beautiful piece of wool - never knew what I was to do with it, so I've held on to it. Now, to figure out the perfect skirt and pair of trousers (I'm thinking pleated front trousers). Meanwhile, I got the sweater started.
Last week, when the yarn came, and I realized it went so well, I scrapped the idea of using the dark charcoal color as contrast that I'd picked up, and went shopping for something perfect with the wool. Came up with apple green. It's the right color, a tad brighter than the green in the wool jacquard fabric.
I'm so in love with it.
Have been clipping right along. The perfect project to work on in the evening sitting next to dh while he watches TV. Too dark and too many distractions to knit anything that takes too much attention.
My ott light is over my loom in the loft, and it just won't do to have to cart it to the LR each night to knit, and they are bleepin expensive to invest in another one.

Must go, have a private lesson to teach this AM. Love those, they pay well. Client is a hoot too.

will be back with Wednesdays 'what was I thinking'
This isn't What WAS I thinking, more,
What AM I thinking??

This is todays haul. I need more yarn like I need a big hole in my head.
So, why, today, when I went to the LYS that I'd never been to (Myers House Weaving Room), did I feel compelled to plunk down cash for some absolutely lovely Inca Alpaca violet yarn? along with 3 pair of Addi turbos circ's, and two Adrienne Vittadini books I've been covetting on line.

And to go along with all that lovely yarn, I had to pick up the Lantern Moon basket. Cool basket, has a top with handles that fold out for carrying that project along. And when I got home, in the mail, was my brand new beautiful copy of Poetry in Stitches. I lost a copy on Ebay to a higher later bidder, so went searching for it.
Found it at Nice website and what a lovely lady to do business with.

So, now I need a partner to make one of those NO More Yarn pacts with - best candidate I can think of offhand is Laine. You reading this Laine? You ready?

Monday, September 26, 2005

Project Update

Feeling motivated and fresh this MOnday to start this week.

Projects on the Needles:
Ladywell: Seamed, ends woven in, turtleneck knit on, Needs: armhole ribbing, projected time allotment: 3 hrs - note to self, just finish it already.

VK11 - the reincarnation of the pink/red Noro Silk Garden sweater. All knit, ready for blocking.

Stranded with GGH red mohair, stuff is spun lighter than air, and Jaggerspun pink MaineLine wool.

Thursday, September 22, 2005


Julie asked for my take on Fashion Week runways.
Yawn, Stretch, hmmm....
first: (click on the words, not on the image, to see what I'm referring to)

the top ten fall must-haves I cannot live without, acc'd to Neiman Marcus
ya know, I think I CAN live without all ten.

I'll get back to ya on Fashion Week.
So, what do the Fabbos think?

oh, and if you love bad fashion, you must check out Rose-Kim knits on Thursdays. link to her blog is on my sidebar.

Sharrons destash

for the moment see the flickr badge to match yarn to inventory list.
See Knitters Review stash redux details on yarn and sale.

A Pirate with class

Your pirate name is:
Red Mary Read

Passion is a big part of your life, which makes sense for a pirate. Even through many pirates have a reputation for not being the brightest souls on earth, you defy the stereotypes. You've got taste and education. Arr!

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Finally, What was I thinking Wednesday

Yes, it is still Wednesday!
Spent all day driving to my friend Sharron's house over in IL, sorting through items with her, then came home, and started photographing and tagging her stash for destash sale (more later), then went to wine tasting tonight at Wine Chateau.

But first things first:
it is sad, very sad, but I haven't even had to start reaching to find "what was I thinking" items to post. hmmmmm.

This weeks feature presentation:
a 48 square sampler afghan knit of brown sheep wool - intarsia and fair isle and stitch pattern combination sampler. Definitely the adventures of a process knitter. the brown sheep wool - with or without the accompanying squares, is going into the destash sale. along with the natural undyed wool stacked up next to the brown sheep. It is excellent wool for either a fisherman knit sweater or a felting project. OR, some other ambitious soul can finish the afghan. If no one wants the whole kit and kaboodle I may just rip out a few rows on a couple of those squares to make them 8" (who am i kidding????) and send to whoever it is that is hosting the contest to win some of her lovely stash ( a sweater quantity) by entering 8" squares that you knit. She is going to choose what she wants for herself for an afghan, seam them together, then seam the rest for charity donation afghans - she is a better person than me, I admit - the very thought of zillions of hours seaming disparate squares together - with no rhyhme or reason to the pattern, color, yarn weight etc - gives me the willies. Michellers, with your artistic sensiblities, my guess is you are shuddering too.
I digress.
The afghan pattern was featured in the fall winter 1984 Vogue KNitting, and is really pretty, I'm just never in my lifetime going to make an afghan - not in my foreseeable lifetime anyway.

as for Sharrons stash sale - this is some good stuff my friends. See my flicker badge over there in the sidebar for a preview. I've got the yarns / quanities and prices listed in a word program, will try to get it on here tomorrow. Sharron has just retired and sometime in the next few months will be putting her house on the market and moving out of state - and downsizing. Sharron not only is a lifelong knitter, but everytime she bought yarn for a sweater, she bought enough of the same yarn in different colors to make one for herself, one for her daughter, and one for her daughter-in-law. The yarns she is listing (well, I am listing for her) are all purchased within the last 10 yrs or so, have been stored in her yarn/fabric closet - moth/pet and smokefree home, almost all are of sufficient quantity to make whatever kind of sweater you could want, most are wool - and there will be more to come. We made a dent today - but just a dent.
as usual, you pay shipping - I'm going to make this easy on all of us, shipping is $6.50 in the continental US, and I am now set up to take Paypal.

a demain

thanks to Michelle and Julie and Krissy and whoever else is out there reading and trying to decipher this funny language. (note: frogs say rip-it, rip-it, and a visit to the frog pond usually results in ripping out a significant amount of work).


Sunday, September 18, 2005

My baby

That's a 500 lb propane tank deliberately set on fire for a training exercise. My baby child is in the group of 4 on the right, up front, holding the hose on this fire.
I say prayers every day for his safety and every one of the kids he's training with. He's a junior in the Fire Science program at Lake Superior State University in Sault Ste Marie MI.

I also silently say a prayer for the safety of all the first responders every time an emergency vehicle flies down the road with sirens blaring.

Saturday, September 17, 2005

The Hood

Is anyone else as enamoured of these knit headscarves as I am? I am so in love with the piece....think I have to make at least one for the season, not that it gets cold enough around here to need anything on your head, but oh well.

Finally, at the Sewing Machine

All right. I know, all you've seen is knitting and weaving. I will admit that right now I'm more enamoured of the creation of fabric than the with the cutting and stitching that yields fashionable garments.
However, after MUCH ado the basement sewing room is organized and I can find things again - what a pleasure. Now I can go sew.

And my mom was just here for 3 days to make her jacket - the Chanel style jacket that I taught all last year; mom wanted to make one, so last time she was here we did a muslin, and then she came back and spent all of the time she was here working on a beautiful deep red and white houndstooth check tweed, turning it into a v pretty jacket. I just took her to the airport - and MOM, we forgot to get pictures - of the process and of the jacket. Whaaa. I know, dh (that's dear husband) has the camera with him at the college visitation, but that's no excuse for not taking pics. ;)

Now I have a whole day and a half with no kids, no husbands, no interuptions, nothing to distract me, to get busy down there working on my silk tweed jacket and skirt that is 1/2 made, and the chinese brocade sheath dress that goes with, and the flouncy silk jacquard print skirt that also goes with, all of which I want to take with me to the American Sewing Expo in two weeks.

So, I descend to the dungeon. when I emerge I should be ready to take pics of the wardrobe in progress.

oh, for my stitching friends that are reading this: Marfy patterns are available now in the US through the Vogue Patterns website. I am thrilled. Wonderful designs. Amazing attention to detail. and finally something different than what is avail here, not of the 'make it this afternoon, wear it tonight' variety that we usually have.
Oh, speaking of, I need to make two garments for display at the store for classes that I'm teaching this fall. the SanDiego Jacket and the Hong Kong vest. Who I ask, comes up with these names? Not my fav style of garment or of sewing, but it's what I'm teaching.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

What Was I Thinking? Wednesday

Knitting with Beads! Beads on thread, (DMC cotton actually), on needles that have so many 000's in the size that they're more like wire than needles.
So, what was I thinking? I don't know. Probably the same thing my son thinks before jumping off cliffs wearing only skiis on his feet - because it was there and I could. But why you might ask? I couldn't tell ya. This one is going back in the drawer for awhile.

Update and progress report:

Back of the Ruffle Edge Cardi in Debbie Bliss Baby cash - waiting on more yarn before I can proceed.

This number has emerged from the frog pond reincarnated as the back of VK 11 from the Fall '05 issue, and it's going FAST.

Ladywell is getting a turtleneck, on addi turbo 1's

Esmerelda, of Jaeger Odessa, a few rows into the back.

I think 4 projects on the needles are enough at any one time - but... the yarn came today for my Union Square Market PUllover. I won't cast on until Ladywell is finished....I won't cast on until Ladywell is finished...better go knit

Thursday, September 08, 2005


It's 90 degrees and the hockey game's on, somebody sound the alarm ... oh, nope, wrong temp, wrong wrong wrong.
It's Sept, we're supposed to be catching a nip in the air, feeling fall right around the corner - something is WRONG with this picture - it is 90 degrees.

And I'm thinking of Gloves.
In fact, I just ordered some yummy cashmere to make my very first pair of gloves ever. Ambitious? yes. but I've been saving this Deborah Newton pattern for gloves since the hat and gloves first appeared on the cover of Vogue Knitting in the Fall/Winter 1986 issue - I've lost and recovered the mag so many times in my sewing room...imagine my surprise when going through pattern magazines a few weeks ago to find the same pattern (yup, it is the same) published again in the Fall 2004 IK.
This time, I"ve made sure the pattern is staying close to the top of the pile of patterns, and went and bought the DP's. I think they'll be so cool. er, warm

Now, to finish up some of those UFO's.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

What Was I Thinking? edition 2

It's almost Wednesday, and since I have plans from early AM on tomorrow, I thought I would get a head start on my 'What Was I Thinking' Wednesday

This sweater is probably my favorite 'what was I thinking?'
aka: Adventures of a Process Knitter.
Sometimes I just get so caught up in the possibilities and process that I forget to look at the product.
The color pattern in here comes from an Alice Starmore chart - love the swirls and angles. The yellow, pink and coral yarns here are Unger Figaro - a softer than soft silk/cotton blend. (which, BTW, is discontinued - big surprise there). The blue and purple yarns are a mercerized cotton - hard finish, not at all compatable with the Figaro - but hey, what was I thinking striping it like that anyway????
process: start knitting with the figaro that I had, start playing with the Starmore chart, ah, I could just combine all these and make a pullover ... oh, but I won't have enough yarn ... that's ok, I'll just buy some more colors, and mix 'em all up.
What's wrong with this picture:
yarn textures and weights are really incompatible
would I ever, and I mean EVER walk into Nordstroms or Neimans and pick up a sweater that looks like this and try it on, much less Buy it? Are you kidding?

this baby is Destined for the Frog pond - although I still have to say that I love the color combo. I just wouldn't wear it in this incarnation. Someone KICK me, really, if I ever decide to Stripe something that I either don't have or can't get enough yarn of.
I do have an idea of what I'm going to do with the Unger yarn - have enough of the yellow/coral and pink to put together a sleeveless hoodie, pattern pictured on the cover of a Knitters mag from awhile ago. They used Blue/aqua/green - my color combo will work - no stripes I promise

Now, this week I open my Neiman Marcus email and guess what I see:
You're kidding right?
they visited my Frog Pond before I had a chance to frog?
and simply outlined it with leather
and put a price tag on it close to $1000

Monday, September 05, 2005

Labor Day

Krissy, these pics are for you.
Now, YOU know that I have nothing to do with growing these - or they would be Brown and dead!
However I am supposed to do something with them.
Tonight I made a mint /cilantro salsa to go with the pork roast we did on the Rotisserie. and I didn't even get pics of the mint, the rosemary, the bay, the chives, the parsley -.... the list goes on. Anyone need any herbs? Pesto anyone? How many more pints of pesto can I make? How much more fresh Jamaican jerk? sigh... but I sure do love having these beauties right outside my kitchen door.

Well, it's been a week, and I miss my ediets friends, the Fabbos and the TCO's.
Hopefully you guys can drop in now and then and let me know what's going on.
I'll probably be back either after Thanksgiving or after the Holidays. But I really decided that since they knocked me out, I might as well stay out and continue to get some things done.

Michelle, I need to find out how the testing went. Everything ok? can we start knitting baby clothes?
Roxane, hugs GF, I did get your email. I will be back - in a bit.
Nanci, how's the house coming? When is move in day? I can only imagine from what has been posted here so far - oh lordy, these vintage projects - you must be LYAO. The fashion police are due here momentarily. I need to shape this up a bit. And if Anything will bring home to you that I am only a coupla years younger than your mom, (or maybe not), this ought to do it. I promise, I do have some awesome things on the worktable. They just aren't camera ready yet. Soon, I promise. How's Ethan doing with his new school year.
Lynn, how's the LL going? I miss reading about the saga.
Christin, I ordered my yarn finally for the Union Square Market KAL. I ended up with a baby cash in a fuschia pink, the contrast to be done in a smokey dk grey (black was too harsh). I tried the alpaca and it wasn't working on the 2's, and the 3's the stitch looked good, but the gauge was off - baby cash it is. Send me some pics of what you are up to ok?
Julie, Kimmy, I miss you both. Did you ever connect again re the volunteer thing and the boards?

TCO's, group hug. funny thing, a week off ediets and guess what? I'm losing weight - go figure. Down into the next decade again. Chele, I heard, via a little mouse, that you are down another decade and are kicking butt on the weight loss front - you go girl.

Anne, Sheila, maybe we can still connect this fall - anyone still up for Carmen?


On the Sewing/Knitting/Weaving front:
making progress - spent at least 10 hours in that bleepin sewing room over the weekend. Have another 5 to go, and it will be where I am happy with it, and can accomplish something in there again.
And have more progress on the ruffle cardi.
BTW, I know the pic of it in the book isn't all that attractive - but I saw a Manuf Sample knit up in a shop when I bought the yarn, and tried it on, and it was really pretty. Hopefully this project will bear that out.
And, the Noro Silk Garden and mohair behemouth has emerged from the Frog Pond as nice round balls, ready to be reincarnated. news flash: there isn't enough of any color of the mohair to strand with the KSG for the whole sweater, so, off to LYS I go. I will not repeat the stripe adventure.

Saturday, September 03, 2005

Vintage Projects

Vintage Projects

I can't call these UFO's.
They have been in the closet so many years that they've long outgrown Unfinished Object status, and have become vintage. This is a project from the 80's.

Quite frankly, I'd forgotten this one existed.
Think I'll seam it up, knit a rib on the neck edge, and see what I want to do with it.
The yarns are gorgeous. Maybe it'll be a good kick around the house while wearing jeans sweater. (will have to turn down that central heating)

Project Update
Ladywell: shoulders are seamed, most ends woven in, ready to pick up stitches and knit turtleneck ribbing.
Ruffle edge cardi: ready to start armhole shaping on back.

Frogging: Spent 3 hours Wed night ripping out side seams, and have half sweater unravelled. The more I look at that sweater, the more I wonder why it took me so long to ask "what was I thinking?" That is one ugly sweater.

The Loom: 1 yard woven/ 10 to go. Would like to have 1/2 the project done by the time mom comes to visit in 2 weeks - this means some serious loom time. 1/2 this piece is for my mom; I will make her a French Style (aka Chanel but copyright laws prohibit me from putting it that way) jacket. The other 1/2 is for my friend Sharron - who will make her own FS/Chanel jacket.

Sewing Room ORGANIZATION: capital O! I'm taking everything apart, finishing cataloguing the inventory, and reorganizing. I spent a zillion $ this week at Lowes buying shelving/drawer/cabinet/ and organizer bins. On the agenda for this weekend.

In my Real Life: It's the blues Festival weekend this weekend in Downtown St Louis. Heading downtown this evening - soon as dh tears himself away from the football on TV.

Thursday, September 01, 2005


I've spent the last 45 min learning how to add buttons as links to my sidebar.
much thanks to Kim and her directions on Knitters Review.

Elizabeth, I posted your button today!

its the little things.

Now for whats up next: