Thursday, March 29, 2007

Confession Time

I've been a bad, bad girl. Progress, what progress?

An honest update:

LR Seaming- Full stop.
Clapotis- just past 1/2 way mark!

I'll be away this weekend on a knitting retreat, so hopefully LR will receive some well-deserved attention.

Or, Clapotis will be done. One of the two will occur.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

R2D2 Gone Postal!

R2D2 mailbox
Originally uploaded by wsh1266.
Have you seen one of these around?

A coworker and I bumped into one yesterday on Kellog in Downtown St. Paul.

They're really cute! I wonder how many are out there.

Photo found via Flickr

Monday, March 26, 2007

Soy Enferma!

What? More yarn?
1. It was on sale.
2. Deepa talked me into it.

(very bad pictures. Blame 5 days of stomach flu!)
Above is Wool/Silk from Mystical Creations Yarn. The yarn is a pleasantly rustic thick/thin shiny, glossy mass. It's described as 'bulky'-- although the thin portions have pushed me toward a #8 needle. The "Cherry Gloss" colorway above is truly different than MCY's website! It's well worth the price-- although here's fair warning-- TAKE HEED when ordering from these folks. From this experience, I can attest that the photos on their site are stock-- and do not reflect their currently dyed skeins. I'm really happy with the colors. It's not what I expected, but quite pretty. (Tiger and Raspberry Jam?)
I'm sure you all know what project it is. Let's hear it, "Oh. Last year's project, huh? You know, everyone's moved onto Lady Eleanor by now".

Toby and Paco don't care, but area starting to wonder when the new afghan will be complete.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

First Day of Spring

I often wonder if anyone really likes the sculptures in the lobby.

Found photo & poem

In Arabia it was…
Originally uploaded by

Warning: Absolutely no knitting content below. I'm on a seaming break, folks. 20/23 seams complete on LR.

Ten years ago I traveled in North Africa for six months. How facinating, years later, to see so very little of the majority of Arabian society presented through major US media circuts. Negativity and terror prevail.

Without a doubt, most of the people I met were wonderfully kind and hospitable folk who were absolutely facinated with blue eyes, golden hair, and skin so light that one could trace blue veins nearly to the owner's heart.

In Arabia it was…
Let me for a moment
Take a break from this world
I need time to cherish
To remember the times I had
On those dunes when walking
Across the desert-sea exploring
I can almost sense the feeling
When first my feet sank in…

The warm sand pouring
When held in my hands
The fresh breeze gliding
Through my face
Whispering my ears
My eyes started glittering
My dream was blooming

..and then I fell in love
With Arabia and its people
Its wonderful exploration
Its magical sensation
Its remarkable admiration

Let me for a moment
Return to that land
Let me for a moment
Feel the sand in my hand

- BidWiya 1 Oct '05

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Twisted Sisters and Stitches

Last January I started with a UFO goal- work on or rip out one project per month. In February Lizard Ridge unfortunately lead to an abandoned Patrick (He's still on deck, post LR). March, however, was a different story:

This was a mini-clapotis in Twisted Sister's Petite Voodoo, a dk-weight 50/50 silk and merino yarn. I thought I'd knit an 'office width' clapotis. Due to the edge curling, I just never liked it. Clapotis is meant to be a large, flowing scarf/shawl-- and (at least for me) did not translate well into a significantly thinner knit.
Voodoo is a great yarn. It should make a lovely lacey scarf- the verigation is mild enough to work well with patterning.
After seeing Kay's Argosy Wrap, I'm thinking this might be a good fit. Clapotis-esque, yet I can block the heck out of it to make a thinner scarf that won't curl too much. Perhaps another lace pattern would be a better match? At any rate, the knit-from yarn will need to take a little bath in the near future to get it's bounce back!

Twisted Stitches: A few weeks ago the books on the left arrived at my door. Yes, the long-awaited Uberlieferte Strickmuster aus dem Steirischen Ennstal (Traditional Knitting Patterns from the Enns Valley of Styria) by Maria Ehlbacher was sequestered via Marjan at Yarnissima! Thanks again, Marjan for the head's up!!! As some of you know, I've been looking around the globe for months to find them.
#3 was not for sale. It will come someday. I can feel it.
I also purchased New Style of Heirloom Knitting. Take a peek over at Crossed in Translation (a 2006 KAL) to see why!

If you're interested in --or unfortunately obsessed like me with-- twisted stiches, Liesl Fanderl's series is a thorough anthology- and is much easier to find than Maria Ehlbacher's out of print books.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Just a bit of time

Seaming. Ahh, yes. Seaming.

For me, seaming occurs in a vacuum of time. What? An hour has flown by, and I've only seamed this much??? Truly, it takes just *forever*-- that is, when I'm doing it!

I'm using the "invisible" seam from the Knitter's Handbook. You can easily see the seam between the yellow and orange block and between the purple and dark green waves. Each row will need a little blocking around the seamed area to encourage some waving action.

On the bright side, LR is finally becoming one complete piece-- and I'm still loving it. This is the first really large project I've knit where I haven't been bored out of my mind half-way through. It's a great project. Go for it!

Eunny Jang and the Gift that Almost Was

Eunny Jang: During the last few days a number of knitting fanatics have jumped on the Interweave Knits subscription bandwagon after E.J. was announced as the new editor. (myself notwithstanding!)

Then a dear friend said this over lunch: "You know, magazines plan their publications long into the future. Eunny's not going to have full control of the ship until the next Winter issue." -How right she is! I certainly didn't consider this, and I'm sure many other fellow knitters didn't either.

What do y'all think?

Will we begin to see Eunny's touch in this summer's IK issue? Furthermore, what do you think of IK's new layout?

the Gift that Almost Was: I have a friend that's an absolute conversational charmer- she's funny, intelligent, and can open up the absolute worst of conversationalists (in a good way) in a heartbeat. This week she asked what I thought was a strange question at first-- "Which square in LR is mine?". I didn't understand at first, until she mentioned a little something was left at my door. Apparantly a yellow bag with streamers and Kureyon inside has gone missing! We came up with two theories: A. Big Wind B. Kid takes it, realizes it's yarn and chucks into snowbank. You decide.

Connie- Thank You for the gift. I truly wish the card would have been left behind!!!

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Home Stretch

Lizard Ridge squares: done.
Seaming & Edging yarn: not here.
(Knit Picks! grr argh.)

Last night I lined up the squares in terms of intensity, saturation, and hue-- and essentially worked from one light corner to one dark. I didn't like how it looked. It was too predictible and didn't rely on the playful quality and sensibility of the rich, wonderful color in these blocks. So, I decided to go with a random colorblock-- something that would appease the aesthetics of, say, Gaudi's tilework at Park Guell or Sagrada Familia.

I think this arrangement works, but I'm still considering a few square moves. Any suggestions?

Tonight: stash diving to find appropriate yarn for seaming. I'm excited to complete this project!

I'm sure you all know the major knitting news by now: Eunny Jang has been named the new editor of Interweave Knits. I couldn't be more delighted. Her blog has inspired many of us for the past year and a half. In terms of her design, Franklin Habit may have said it best on 11/15/06: "Eunny, honey, you're really giving She Who Litigates in Scottish Courts a run for her money." She's rare in both her intense love of traditional designs translated and updated for the now, and for her generous patterns and articles on technique.

Congratulations, Eunny and IK! Excellent choice. Let's see if the magazine will transend the quality of it's first years of production.

Have I subscribed to IK in the past 24 hours?- absolutely.

Friday, March 9, 2007

Mooney Eyes

Originally uploaded by cashmere dreams.

Paco and his 'Mooney Eyes' may say it best-- Thanks to everyone who donated Kureyon yarn to the Lizard Ridge afghan! (Joan, Jean, Deepa, and Mom!)

The last square will be blocked tomorrow afternoon!!!!

Unfortunately, not all of the seaming/edging yarn has arrived yet. Peruvian wool was ordered from both Elann and Knit Picks. Elann not only followed up with a thank-you email and a handwritten note, but shipped the yarn from Canada to Minnesota in only three days! The Knit Picks yarn was ordered on the same day as Elann (last Thursday, 7 shipping days ago). I'm hoping that KP arrives tomorrow at the latest.

Deepa's Rosedale truly highlights the color of the last square in the blanket. What fun!

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

Rescue Dogs

Originally uploaded by cashmere dreams.

Since there has been some traffic today from JenLa's contest*, keep reading if you're interested in Toby and Paco's history-- and why you should consider adopting and/or rescuing your next pet.

*go and vote for your favorite paws on JenLa's blog!

He was the runt of his litter. Toby was passed over at his original AKC seller (puppy farm), and was sold as an older hypoglycemic puppy via pet store in Burnsville, MN. Unfortunately, the woman who originally purchased him suffers from severe mental illness. Toby was neglected and lived in a home with eleven other pets. When this woman moved to Michigan, I purchased Toby from her directly and kept his original name. I had never heard of a Basenji before, a barkless dog from Africa, and after a week of adjustment he has been a great dog. Quirky, yes... but aren't we all? (Toby likes to run in counter-clockwise circles!)

Toby's original owner begged for his return a year later. I refused and she purchased another dog. Six months afterward, she asked me to take the second dog! I helped her find a new dog parent at that time.

Eighteen months ago Toby was up at my family's cabin with a number of dogs. (My parent's dog, cousin's, neighbor's, etc.) we let them out to run and play together. At the same time the neighbor was running late for work... and hit Toby. His pelvis and left femur were in peices. After two surgeries at the U of MN, he has recovered fabulously. He's a true sweetheart, and has been through plenty in a mere four and a half years!

He was picked up by the dog pound in Cloquet, MN. At the time he as about a year or a year and a half. Bone thin, full of fleas, intestinal troubles, aggressive behavior-- and (this is what got me), he ran in clockwise circles! Clearly he had been on the streets for at least a few months. He was found in October, so at least it was warm-ish outside. I've often wondered where he came from before he was collected by the city.

I found Paco online at Basenji Rescue and Petfinder. There are a number of other agencies that connect rescue dogs with homes. After adoption, Paco was a mess for a number of months. He was often sick, was 'naughty' when left alone (he ripped up a couch- decimated yarn- destroyed some clothes- you know, the regular stuff...), and was aggressive toward Toby. (Toby returned the favor by peeing on his kennel!) On the positive side, Paco always wanted as much attention and affection from humans as possible. After the transition period he has been nothing but a loving, sweet dog. Toby and Paco live very well together, and are truly like brothers.

Rescuing a pet isn't easy. You may loose a couch or your favorite angora sweater, but it's worth it!

Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Evening packages!

Who doesn't love coming home with packages waiting at their door?

Last Thursday I ordered yarn to edge LR from Elann and Knitpicks. The Peruvian Highland wool from Elann was the first to show, and I'm really pleased. [...and only 3 shipping days? wow!] So far, it looks like a great product.

The primrose above is a birthday gift from Renee. It's wonderfully bright-- and I can't wait to plant it outside when spring finally arrives!

Two other packages were at the door-- Dark chocolate, a Bibelot gift certificate, and Opal sock yarn! (Hundertwasser and Rainforest 2-Tiger) Thank you everyone for the lovely gifts!

Monday, March 5, 2007

Sleepy Sunday

The snow continued to fall all day Friday, and I stayed home from work. It was nice to have such an unexpected chunk of time to knit.

Lizard Ridge on Friday afternoon. 16 squares. 2/3 complete:

Fast-forward to sleepy Sunday. JenLa is hosting a "show your Paws" contest (DeFeet of Cuteness), and I can't stop from entering ! If Toby and Paco were your pets, could you resist taking these photos?

More photos can be viewed via flickr:

LR by mid-day on Sunday. 5/6 complete. [*sans seaming and edging!] I should be done with the squares by this Friday!

Jeanne at K3tog asked this weekend how many colorways have been used-- so I counted. 13 so far.

Thursday, March 1, 2007

It's Blizzarding!

Clearly a little snow won't stop Minnesotans from gathering for coffee and knitting time! Renee and Addie stopped to smile last night as our second snowy onslaught of the week began.

Of course, during the drive home I had to deal with this! The photo in the middle is the walk to my house. On the right, a textural shot while driving on the High Bridge. (Downtown was a warm glow through the snow.)

Paco's toes- per JenLa's request...

Toby and Paco use their best tactics to encourage "working from home" tomorrow. Be safe, stay at home and play with your human and/or furry families!