Tuesday, June 26, 2007

UFO Resurrection

I really wanted to start a new project. At least, that's what I thought I wanted.

But it wasn't coming together. The patterns that are immediately accessible I don't have yarn for, don't want to buy new yarn.
The yarn I have, the patterns/books need to be purchased and then I'd need to wait for shipping, since the one place in town I drove to didn't have stock.
Maybe too some of the reluctance to continue this process of starting and leaving unfinished countless projects has me uneasy.
And, while my knitting isn't nearly as out-of-hand as my sewing, I do have 4 projects OTN's (the Drops Cardi, the red cotton cable cardi, the baby Sockotta cardi, and the Calla Cami), as well as another 4 projects that need seams and finishing. Oh, I almost forgot: my car knitting, which is a scarf for my dear friend Jacquie, which I worked on all the way to Rockford IL last weekend, and my plane knitting, which is that Noni bag that I knit in airports but never knit the ends and felted.

That's about 8 too many.
Wouldn't it just be awesome if I could start the Fall with a clean slate?

To that end, I picked up and resurrected another UFO yesterday.

Tada: I present, the Drops Cardi.
That pic was taken May 12, 2006.
This pic was taken 5 minutes ago: I'm past the change from cables to stockinette, past the armscye split, and into the neck and armscye shaping.

progress Drops Cardi June 07

As a reminder, the pattern is the Drops Cardi 44-8 (that is avail as a free download)
Now I just need an attention span that is longer than that of a 4 year old.

Real vintage style girdles for the retro style dresses. Can you believe it? Can you imagine Wearing it?

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Fashion report

I have to do this every once in awhile.
Have you seen the HippieChic they're talking about over at Style.com?

I LOVE the comment about "posing only" re the crochet bikini!

But even more than the humor, I for one am jumping up and down about the pant silhouette. I'm a throw back, a dinosaur, but I LOVED wearing the old bell bottoms and I am going to make myself some ASAP...just as soon as I recover some sewing mojo, which has just Vanished into thin air. Anyone seen my sewing mojo floating around?

lifted directly from the page at Style.com:

The Knitty Gritty
No summer of love could be complete without a splashy crochet bikini. Our favorite comes from Giuliana Testino, the sister of hotshot photographer Mario Testino and a knitwear designer whose creations are handmade by Peruvian artisans. NB: This is a posing-only two-piece; crochet tends to sag when wet.

Huancavelica bikini, $240, available at www.giulianatestino.com.

Bell Curve

A sure sign that hippie chic is on the rise? The arrival of the high-waisted, flared jean. Kiwi designer Karen Walker started selling hers two years ago. Now, with labels like Anlo, Deener, and Superfine offering versions, trendsetters are finally trading in their skinnies for the wide-leg style. You can hear Chloë Sevigny, an early adopter, break down the trend on www.vbs.tv. Also new again at the denim bar is that big-in-the-seventies brand, Dittos. Frankie B.'s Daniella Clarke, the L.A. designer famous for her bum-revealing ultra-low-riders, has done an about-face, reintroducing the colorful high-rise bell-bottoms to the Me Generation's offspring.

Deener high-waist wide-leg jean in carbon, $203, available at Blue Bee, Santa Barbara, CA, (805) 897-1137.

Dittos Classic in red, $158, available at www.pinkmascara.com.

Superfine City jean in black denim, $290, available at Barneys New York, (888) 222-7639.

and last but not least, Big Fat Enabler Alert
This fabric has just been put up for sale over at Fabric Mart. Just 'cause I'm not sewing does not mean I'm not looking, and this one has caught my eye.
So, go buy it will you? Buy it all up so that it isn't there tempting me...

you know the drill, click on the pic for a link to the site. item # 806531

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

chicken or the egg?

So when you embark on a project, or conceive of a design, fabric or yarn, sewing or knitting/crochet the $64,000 question is:
Do you start with a pattern then go looking for materials?
or Do you start with your fabric/yarn and go looking for pattern?

You all know the dilemma, you have a stash that would provide start up inventory for a small store, you have a pattern collection that will stock a library...yet...when you decide it's time for a new project, inevitably, one or the other seems to be missing, and you find yourself
a. shopping
b. internet browsing, fingers hovering over the buy-it-now icon with credit card at the elbow.
c. dishing up the ice cream

I have 4 designs below, any one of which I'd be happy to start on today. I have a yarn stash that is quite out-of-control. So why is it that when I started looking this afternoon I could not find ONE stinking yarn that met all the requirements of any one of those patterns??? I ask you: WHY? wrong gauge, wrong weight, not enough yardage, not solid color...it's enough to make a girl go shopping. And that is just not likely.

I guess that because I'm a much more accomplished sewist than I am a knitter, I am much more likely to be able to go internet snoop shopping to find a design I want to sew, then to my stash where I usually can find something that I'll be able and happy to use, and if I don't have a pattern I can easily adapt one or draft one from what I do have.

And I'm ready to take on the world right now.
Had a follow up test today on a physical that I had lately and got the news that indeed, I am going to live another year to be able to go through it all again... :) So what am I going to knit with?

Monday, June 18, 2007

Another for the queue

Blog bopping has brought more ideas
edit, ok, just for Lorraine, how about if I say I've been bopping around the internet looking at knitting blogs? Does that work ;)
How about an informal vote:
Which of the next 4 cotton cardis are your preference? I like them all, and am really in the mood to start something cotton. Sorry, but it is just too freaking hot here to knit with wool. Can't even handle it.

choose: number 1 (the Red), Number 2 (the Orange), number 3 (the ice cream cone), or number 4, (the lilac)

click on the pic to link to the pattern/designers website

or Tangerine Twist that is up at the current Knitty.com (click on the pic to get to the pattern)

or there are these two from Rowan that have been in my queue for quite some time

BTW, if you haven't seen it yet;
Jae has finished her design for the palawan peacock shawl. It's awesome. And I get to see it in person in August. ;)

And a post-script:
The pattern Fifi that I referenced last post, The really interesting cabled pullover, IF you like it yourself, and IF you think you want to knit it...better find the pattern NOW.

Sexy Knitters Club is voting right now on the next design they want to knit, and Fifi is so far the front runner, and unless some big upset happens it will win. Since this pattern is only avail from brick and mortar stores, and of the stores I looked at websites for this morning, only one had it in stock (Jimmy Beans Wool and their shipping is $4 for a $6.50 pattern), it is going to be one rare bird. That is, unless the powers that be over at SKC are able to make arrangements for the pattern to become avail online as a download - they have quite a bit of purchasing power, so who knows. If it remains a pattern that you must buy a print copy of though, there are going to be quite a few who're unhappy over there.
I called several stores this AM from the list of retailers that stock French Girl patterns, and finally found a store that had the pattern in stock, in Chicago. I bought the pattern they had.
Anyway, moral is, if you want it, better buy it now.

have you seen/heard this?

Thursday, June 14, 2007


Right now my sewing energy is very low. I keep planning sewing time, then finding something else to do...or getting something done but the going is slower than molasses and it feels a chore.

Meanwhile, my energy for knitting and yarn seems to be waxing again.
So, for a couple of weeks anyway, I think I'm going to go with the flow and work on some yarn projects, and just let the sewing room languish.
Finally, today I am setting up the blocking board/pad and will block out the purple DB ruffle cardi that I'd finished knitting at least a month ago, and also will block Liz (Ya, I know, late late late). And, I'll finish crocheting the second side of the pink/grey skirt.

Meanwhile, in the planning stages

I think I've found the project for that Rowan calmer that I knit TemptingII from last year, then unravelled the whole at Stitches Midwest with Jae and Kim as witnesses.
The pattern: Fifi by FrenchGirl

two examples out there as FO's in blogland
Nonnah's and This one by Margaux

Another project that intrigues:

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

The Beach/college orientation/mail

I swear, next year, everywhere we go, we are going to FLY.
In the past week we logged slightly less than 2000 miles in the car.
This is coming a month after we logged something like 1500 traveling to Sault Ste Marie for Daniel's graduation, and only 3 months before that driving out to Vail. I've had my fill of driving trips. But, guess what? We get to drive Back to S Carolina mid-August to move Lauren into the dorm, then to Athens GA to see Katie's new apt.
All is good though. We have agreed, wherever we go next year, it's going to be with an airline ticket in hand.

Lauren got to go to Orientation. She got the dorm assignment she wanted, and is all registered for classes.

I got some work done on my travel project. I think I mentioned before we left that I'd been swatching and figuring. I ended up deciding on this skirt. 1/2 of the front is finished and all of the back.
yarn, Rowanspun 4ply in pink and slate
crochet hook size E/4
pattern, Interweave Crochet Jan 2006

I hadn't crocheted anything other than an edging on a knit garment since, well, High school. I had to remember how to read a pattern and then how to make the stitches. It's kind of like riding a bike, it's all still there.
While crocheting, especially while sitting waiting on various aspects of the orientation to finish, I listened to The Bonesetters Daughter by Amy Tan
What a fabulous read. I know it's been out for a number of years, but I'd never read it. I highly recommend it.
Gotta love that Ipod that lets you multi-task.
We did get to spend a couple of days at Myrtle Beach.
Myrtle Beach SC, random beach shot

In the Mailbox at Home:

a vintage coat pattern that I scored on ebay just before we left.
What is special about this pattern? My mom made this coat when the pattern was first issued. I remember it. It was red, and she used pewter buttons handmade at Greenfield Village. I could not resist the nostalgia of owning this pattern, even if I don't get it made up.
Patrones, new here
4 whole issues of Patrones.
from left to right, the most recent "extra" that Tany sent me. Thank You Tany!
the Fiesta issue that I picked up from Stoffeart on ebay
2 older issues that I received in trade from Alison in Australia, for some Simplicity Patterns. I'm thinking I def got the better end of that transaction, but I know she's happy with the patterns, so it works if we're both happy.

now to sew. and Crochet. and finish up some knitting.
oh, and Drive up to Chicago area in 2 weeks to help eldest son move into his first house. My son is a homeowner....whew, I'm getting old.

You Are Snow

Magical yet potentially destructive
You are well known as fun to play with
People anticipate your arrival but then are quickly sick of you

You are best known for: your serenity

Your dominant state: reflecting