Monday, October 31, 2005
Which reminds me, you anonymous people (except Mom) need to leave your name! I'd love to know who's stopping by!
Sunday, October 30, 2005
Zoe despises everyone. The hat suits her attitude just fine. She hates flash photography about as much as she hates "The Man" (or in this case, The Woman) holding her down.
Simba the SuperCat is at your command! Wherever a ball of yarn lays unattended, wherever a good massage is to be had, wherever a can of catfood is being opened, you can count on SUPERCAT to save the day! Or at least, his day.
For more photographs of humiliated cats in Halloween costumes, be sure to check out Simba and Zoe's blog on Halloween day.
Saturday, October 29, 2005
First, slide the right needle into the left side of the stitch as if to knit. This means you stick the needle through the front of the stitch just like you would if you were going to knit it - but don't knit just yet.
Instead of knitting it, you slip the stitch off onto the right needle.
Yep, there's a slipped stitch. You can see that it's not knit, the yarn is still leading away from the stitch off to the right.
Slip the stitches twice.
Next, stick the left needle through both of the slipped stitches. Make sure the left needle is in front of the right needle.
Now use the right needle to reach back and grab the yarn just like you would if you were to knit normally. I knit Continental style so this might look a little different if you knit English.
And lastly pull the yarn through the two stitches.
See? That was easy, right? A beautiful SSK! And so easy to do, too.
Can you see the SSK leaning towards the left? In some patterns, such as with socks, the SSK is used to slant one direction and the K2 tog will be used on the opposite side of the pattern to lean the other direction.
Friday, October 28, 2005
The prospect of knitting socks is usually pretty scary. However, if you can make a scarf, you can make a hat. And if you can make a hat, you can make a sock. So what’s stopping you? Is it all those skinny double pointed needles? I know, that’s what scared me off too. Don’t worry, it’s much simpler than you think.
~Pimp Slap~ (What’s this? It’s advice you don’t want to miss!): If you want to start off with size 8 needles and worsted weight yarn just until you get your bearings, that’s what I did and nothing wrong with it! Unfortunately, I now have one large sock fit for a large footed man. Her name is Marjorie and she’ll probably never have a mate. Poor Marjorie. Which brings up another subject. When knitting socks, it’s always best (in my opinion) to knit both at the same time. This is to avoid Second Sock Syndrome. You’ll know what I mean when you finish your first sock.
OK, let’s begin, shall we?
so named for Faythe the crocheter (craw-chet-er), who doesn’t get the sock knitting phenomena (hehe)
Sport weight yarn
Size 3 dpn or size for gauge (Yes, it’s important to knit a swatch to check gauge, you might as well get into the practice of doing it every time.)
7 stitches = 1” in stockinette stitch (knit one row, purl the next row, repeat)
K = Knit
P = Purl
Sl = Slip
K2 tog = Knit 2 together
Sts = Stitches
SSK = Slip, Slip, Knit
Slip next 2 stitches one at a time onto the right needle, as if you were to knit them (remember, through the front of the stitch, not back). With the two stitches now on the right needle, Insert left needle through both stitches while they’re still on the right needle and use the right needle to K2 tog.
~Pimp Slap~ If you’re like me and need someone to show you how to make the SSK stitch, check out this video at StitchGuide.com. If you'd rather look at still shots, take a look at the instructions and photos I took.
Loosely cast on 48 stitches onto one needle. Divide them onto three needles and join in a round.
~Pimp Slap~ When I divide all the stitches onto three needles, I usually put the very last stitch on the same needle as the first stitch for at least the first couple rows. This helps to avoid any sort of gaps that may occur when you’re trying to join the round. Don’t forget to place a marker to mark the beginning and end of the rounds.
Also, please be careful not to twist the stitches.
~Pimp Slap~ Keeping the stitches from twisting can be tricky, but I have a trick. To me, the stitches look like a caterpillar and the bottom of the stitches look like little feet. To avoid twisting, make sure all the feet line up and look the same on both sides of the needles.
At this point, the double pointed needles may seem a little unmanageable. Don’t worry, that chaotic feel will go away. Just imagine that you are holding two straight needles and the third needle is invisible. Keep saying this to yourself until you're convinced. :)
Rounds 1-4: K all
Rounds 5-18: *K1, P1 repeat from *
Rounds 19-28: K all
That's it for today kids! See? That wasn't so hard, was it? Next time we'll start on the heel!
Thursday, October 27, 2005
Wednesday, October 26, 2005
Simba loves The Knit and figureds if you don't like it, it means more for him (because, "Obviously there's something wrong with a human that doesn't like yarn stuffs").
Speaking of old, I know some people are surprised when they learn I knit. They think it's a craft perfected by grandma types only. I usually tell them, "Actually, it's quite popular with young people." I'm not sure if I've convinced anyone but it isn't uncommon for the response to include, "Will you make me ______________ (fill in the blank with a time consuming, expensive ten skein object that I don't know how to make nor do I wish to learn to make for an unappreciative non-knitter type)?"
What about you? Why do you knit or crochet? How do you respond when people say, "My grandma does that."
Tuesday, October 25, 2005
I'm pleasantly surprised by yarn in the right bottom corner. Dancing - Ballet has turned out to be even more beautiful than the photo! I'm ecstatic. If it knits up like I think it will, I'm definitely going to buy more. I'm not really a fan of mixed colors but this yarn has definitely won me over.
The top two hanks are Alpaca Cloud in Horizon (top) and Stream. The heathering is beautiful - I'm in love! And so soft! You need some, go buy it now!
The bottom hank is Shimmer - Happy Dance. Now, I'm still not so sure about the color. But it's not for me, it's for someone else so...I'm just going to leave it at that. I'm sure it'll look a lot better when it's knit too. I think it's a lot brighter in person than in the photo on their website.
Oh yeah...Alpaca Cloud is much softer than Shimmer. I didn't think using silk would decrease softnes.
Wait, did I say I was going to make this quick? Imagine a quick phone call. hehe You got off easy!
Sunday, October 23, 2005
Hopefully by then I'll have received my Knitpicks order and can start on a Christmas present. I still have to figure out how to post my knit projects without spoiling any surprises. I'll work something out though.
No other news, except Mom and Aimee are going to be here December 12-16th. YES!! I think it's been about four or five years since Mom's been to San Diego, and just over a year for Aimee. Hopefully I'll have my car by then. Last time Mom and Larry came to visit, I had to cram everyone into my Sentra. It was a miserable fit for everyone. It would be cool if we could squeeze in a trip to Vegas but I'm not sure if everyone's up to it. As it is, we have Disneyland and possibly the zoo and SeaWorld to visit. Either way, I'll just be happy to have them here. And at Christmas too!! YAY!!
I saw Enough again tonight. It reminded me of my time spent as an advocate with the city for vicitims of domestic violence. I'd like to get back into that...
So, to combat that stupid, annoying hole, I knit two less rows in the heel flap so I wouldn't have as many empty spaces when I picked up the required amount of stitches. Actually, I've modified the pattern in a few different places, so I figured, why not change this too?
It's amazing how one sock looked great, but the other wouldn't cooperate. Actually, it was only ONE side that had the hole...not both sides!! This called for desperate, if not obsessive, frogging of the gusset (maybe six times *sigh*). After repeatedly frogging the problem sock by assimilating frantic hand-to-hand combat, I've finally conquered and WON the "hole" problem.
Get it, the whole problem! HAHA HA hahAhah HA HA hAH AHA! I WILL NOT LET THE KNIT WIN I WILL NOT!
Last night around 1:00 AM I solved the problem (it was stupid, really) and now have two socks with relatively normal looking gussets. Granted, the sock with the gusset problem has some stitches that look a bit stretched out, but they will work themselves out when washed. They will, or else....
Meanwhile, the two socks and respective balls of yarn lie in a pile where I left them last night. Fortunately, needles do not appear to have chew marks and yarn appears to have not been touched by predators. Note to self: transfer notes written on paper napkin to knitting notebook.
This may look like a mess to you, but to me it smells of victory! The Knit will never win a fight with me. NEVER!!!
Thursday, October 20, 2005
I was pretty excited to get a package in the mail and ripped the box open. Oh yeah! So this is what she sent, some Halloween stickers, glow in the dark spiders, yarn, lotion, a cd and a nice card. :)
OK, now to the details...Can you believe she (assuming she's a she) sent me a cd?? A WHOLE CD? The soundtrack to Moulin Rouge!! EEEEEE!! She obviously read my Amazon wish list. I LOVE this album and am so happy she got it for me. What a truly unexpected surprise! THANK YOU!! I can't wait to drive to work so I can listen to it (I've been working from home these past several days).
I have the lotion here next to my computer and will definitely take this stuff to work. The lotion I've been using at work makes my hands itch. Aveda, GRRR!! I really like this Aveeno though. I'll definitely find some use for the stickers and spiders too. They're so cute!!
And lastly, the yarn. It is SO soft! It's Landscapes, 70% Baby Alpaca, 30% Silk. AND NO FUZZ!! YEAH! This color card shows the yarn much better but look how beautiful it is! It's just perfect! I've really been falling in love with jewel tones lately, and red is my favorite. I can't wait to make something with it. Now I need to look through my patterns for something yummy to make with this.
Thank you SP! Woo hoo!
Monday, October 17, 2005
Now I must say, due to my many road trips, I have had the opportunity to use several different gas station or tourist bathrooms. One regular stop in the middle of the Redwood Forest even has a stinky outhouse without light!! You do your business in the dark, which is probably a good thing cause really, do you want to see where the god-awful stench is coming from?
Anyway, I used the restroom at UCSD tonight. And amazingly, it was WORSE than ANY of the public gas station bathrooms I have EVER USED! Even in Europe! Seriously, who would poop on a toilet seat, and why?? I'm telling you, this was not a mere miscalculation. This was a definite in-your-face act of disrespect. Talk about no class!
Which reminds me, sometimes at work people use the bathroom but do not flush. They'll even leave the toilet seat cover in tact on the seat along with their "business" inside. Why don't they flush? Why, WHY?? Is common decency too much to ask for?
I give these Problematic Pooper People four GAHs and four fist shakes!! And please, for the love of all that's good and will stave off hepatitis, flush the toilet!!
Sunday, October 16, 2005
So first (1) you make the four diamonds. The four on the bottom in this photo are the original four. See (2)...this is an example of where you would start knitting to create the second level of diamonds. You start at the x on the right that I've drawn in and pick up a total of 23 stitches, working your way towards the x on the left. This connects the original four diamonds, creates four more (when you finally attach the first original diamond on the right and the last one on the left). Then at (3) you pick up 23 more stitches and end up making a triangle so the top is flat. After you do this all the way around, you will have created a cuff.
I'm so glad I finished both cuffs. The hard part is over!!
Oh yeah, there was an earthquake today. Jen felt it. Did I? No, I was frogging one of the cuffs, trying to figure out where I had added the extra stitch. grr!
First, I have to say how much I hate todays fashion of the extremely low pants/skirt/shorts, etc. Please people, I do not want to see your crack, your underwear or any hair. With this new trend I've noticed that everyone, even those that shouldn't, want to show us their skin. Not to mention how you have to keep pulling your clothes, what's the point of wearing them if you can't keep them on?
And then there's that band of flesh exposed at the widest part of your body. Note key word "widest." Why would you like to draw attention to yourself like this? Even if you think your body is fit enough to show this sort of skin, you're probably wrong. I'm sorry to be rude, but it's the truth. Your friends must not like you if they can't tell the truth. Either that or they too have equally bad taste. Still, even if you have a nice body, have some pride. Cover up.
Speaking of making your body unattractive, note how having all the fabric on top also makes you look bulkier on top? Like a linebacker? Not good! This may also be due to girls hunching over trying to hide their chest. I'm not sure, but if you're willing to show your midsection, I'm not sure where the shyness comes from.
And why the drooping belts? Do you really want to accentuate your butt like this? No, you're wrong! It's all bad! BAD I SAY!
*sigh* Girls. This what I'm talking about. Unfortunately, this the best example I have in this set of photos of how bad a pooch stomache looks with the low skirt look. But I think you know what I'm talking about. Up close you could see cellulite. And when she turned around, HAIR. Now, some of us latina's have hair in innappropriate places. It's an unfortunate genetic trait of some of us brown skinned people. Well, this girl had hair all over her lower back. NOT GOOD. Girls, you can avoid any sort of embarassing peep shows by covering up.
BTW, do you like how the belt cups her butt?
I'm sure she's a nice girl and she was actually really pretty. I know, she's just following the current fashion trends. But still, am I alone on this one?
(On a side note, the fashion trend is leaning towards a higher waist line.)
Friday, October 14, 2005
Lyrics - All The Right Reasons :
Look at this photograph
Every time I do it makes me laugh
How did our eyes get so red?
And what the hell is on Joey’s head?
This is where I grew up
I think the present owner fixed it up
I never knew we ever went without
The second floor is hard for sneakin’ out
This is where I went to school
Most of the time had better things to do
Criminal record says I broke in twice
I must’ve done it half a dozen times
I wonder if it’s too late
Should I go back and try to graduate
Life’s better now than it was back then
If I was them, I wouldn’t let me in
Every memory of looking out the back door
I had the photo album spread out on my bedroom floor
It’s hard to sayIt’s time to say it
Every memory of walking out the front door
I found the photo of the friend that I was looking for
It's hard to say
It’s time to say it
Remember the old arcade
Blew every dollar that we ever made
The cops hated us hangin’ out
They say somebody went and burned it down
We used to listen to the radio
And sing along with every song we’d know
We said someday we’d find out how it feels
To sing to more than just the steering wheel
Kim’s the first girl I kissed
I was so nervous that I nearly missed
She’s had a couple of kids since then
I haven’t seen her since God knows when
I miss that town
I miss their faces
You can’t erase
You can’t replace it
I miss it now
I can’t believe it
So hard to stay
Too hard to leave it
If I could relive those days
I know the one thing that would never change
Look at this photograph
Every time I do it makes me laugh
Every time I do it makes me
(yep, that's how it ends)
Thursday, October 13, 2005
See the hideous cars that are our future! No!! Whyyyyy Toyota, what are you thinking!! OK, so the NLSV on the bottom is merely a concept car, but why? And why the Yaris? Aren't there enough subcompacts out there? NOOOOOO for the love of all that's good and is not a marriage-of-the-Prius-and-the-Metro....please stop!
Amongst some interesting things I saw, I also have a "Oh no she didn't" set of photos to discuss. I'll let you choose from the topics above.
Wednesday, October 12, 2005
This pattern is a bit different than those I've used before. The cuff is made of mitered squares that are basically stitched together to create a pattern. I started making the squares a couple days ago and even brought some of the pieces to work to finish up on my lunch break. They started to look like little kites with the ends of the yarn hanging out. Since I like to avoid the dreaded SSS, I made all eight squares at once, rather than the four required for one sock.
Sidebar: I started the squares on Monday night. I watched Monday Night Football (yes all caps are required...c'mon, this is Monday Night Football, it's almost like a religion to some folks! Plus, the Chargers were on MNF after a two year absence) and switched to WWE Raw during commercials and pertinent parts of the show like fake slapping, fake anger, fake boobs (not pertinent but still fake), and JR's fake firing. It's almost as if I needed some testosterone and mindless entertainment to counter-balance the grandma-esque knitting. Needless to say I didn't get much finished which is why I finished up the squares at work. Thankfully my co-workers are used to me and only mumble things like "where's my scarf?" when I pull out my knitting. Or "I guess I'll get it in a year and a half." Whateverrrrr! (How do they know??)
So last night I started attaching the squares. I had to stare at the pattern for a while and read it several times before I decided to 'Just do it' and hope it all worked out in the end. Wouldn't you know, it did! In this photo you see the wrong side of the cuff. Reason being after I knit some ribbing, the cuff folds down and joila! You have a sock with a mitered circus cuff! I'm not so sure about the blue color, but my only other option is yellow and it's not very bright. Plus, I was too eager to get started and didn't want to wait an extra day to go to a yarn store, so blue it is!
Though I'm not even halfway done with the ribbing, this should give you an idea of what the cuff will look like when folded down and covering the little bit of blue I've knit so far. Though it doesn't look like what I expected, I'm sure it'll look great when I'm done. Oh, and I put one of the little squares, which I also described to Faythe as diamonds, next to the cuff to help identify the squares (click for larger image).
While the pattern was intimidating at first, it has, as usual, turned out to be pretty simple! Once I deciphered the code with my secret Knitter's Decoder I got out of a Cracker Jack box, followed all the instructions (even that one lonely abbreviation that appears to be a typo), it has turned out to be a cinch. (I say this now but watch, I'll be crying later!! haha!) I have to believe...and just do it!
The perfect end to a dismal day! I came home to find a package from Joanns waiting for me. It was HUGE! I opened it up and pulled out my SWIFT!! The swift itself was in a small box, I don't know why they put it in the bigger box, unless it's cause it was an unusual shape (long and skinny).
Anyway, I immediately tested it out with a hank of Cascade 220. As you can see, it fit nicely. And from the expandability of the swift, I know that anything I buy will fit on it. The cats and I spun it around and were surprised at how nicely it glides. OK I was the one that was surprised, they only wanted to poke their heads between the spokes to check it out. Apollo was pretty happy too cause now he doesn't have to painfully hold the yarn while I wind away.
And check this out. This is how it looks when it's folded up. Pretty small! I mean, it's not teensy or anything, but it'll be easy to fold up and put away. That round silver thing is a cat food can for scale.
Oh yeah baby, bring it on!! Now I can wind lace yarn in confidence!!
Tuesday, October 11, 2005
Sunday, October 09, 2005
My 23rd post was on Tuesday, March 29th, THE BEST DAY OF THE ENTIRE YEAR. I didn't write much. My last sentence (there were only three) was:
"It's going to be a good day!"
I was feeling pretty good, yes I was. A secret admirer left balloons on my car that morning. Later that day I had a really fun bday shindig with Laura and Janet. It was SO fun! Laura must have bought 30 balloons to decorate her place. We had cake, ice cream, snacks and more snacks! They sang a birthday song to me oh...a couple hundred times.
We also went to a local yarn store where I got to use a surprise gift certificate that they, along with Joel, had purchased for me.
Yes, it was a good day indeed. :)
Saturday, October 08, 2005
Thursday, October 06, 2005
Faythe has suggested I'm in a knitting slump because I need more yarn.
I like it. I like it a lot.
So while one could feasibly agree I need more yarn, I can't help but glance over at my two *cough cough* bins *cough* of yarn and wonder, but what would I make? True, some of the yarn in my big bin is cheap, acrylic stuff so I really don't have much planned for it. Yeah, I guess I could *gasp* get rid of it. But as far as the other stuff that I bought at sales when the prices were so good, I couldn't just sit by, I'm really not sure what to do with it. Could it be I've become bored of the few things I know how to make? Could it be that I've come to my knits end? Could it be I've been thinking to myself, "why make this when I could buy it?" I guess I'm bored with what I do know how to make but don't have the time, patience, or energy to start anything really big or complicated.
Is it possible my laziness has spread to *oh no* knitting??
*yawn* My, how all this thinking has made me tired. I think I'll go stare at my yarn and think about this a while longer. Yes, I like staring. Staring with glazed over eyes is a good thing. Meanwhile, I'm already thinking about what time I need to set my alarm clock for tomorrow...GAH!!!
Maybe I need to get a life. Yes that's it. While I've considered joining the City of Heroes craze, I'm not really sure if that will help me "get a life." God, I'm so boring. I need a drink.
Not to mention the strap is ridiculously long. Well, the bag itself is pretty big. Maybe the strap is made for a taller person? I am pretty short after all. It's also possible I made an error when calculating my measurements. Anyway, as you can see she is quite a bit smaller, at least heigth wise, than before felting.
The loops at the top are meant to be used with a scarf or handkerchief of some sort. Not only adding some aesthetic value, it helps to hold the purse closed. The cool thing about this is you can change the look just by adding a different color scarf.
OK, maybe these scarves don't exactly model the whole idea of attaining a different look, but you get the idea. Obviously, I still need to block this baby. But I wanted to post some photos before I forgot. Errrr, actually I did forget, hehe, but thankfully Candsmom reminded me. :)
I have to say, I'm a little disappointed with this pattern. Honeslty I don't think it's the pattern, I think I've done something wrong. Next time I make it, I'm not going to use the 10's (or was it 10.5?)...I'm going to use 8's. I think that'll bring it down to my size. And definitely a shorter strap.
The only other thing I really don't like is how felted yarn attracts every tiny speck of dust. And you all know I live in a house of 2 cats with fur everywhere. Thankfully, Zoe's hair blends right in. Argh Simba, argh!!
Sunday, October 02, 2005
Speaking of next project, today I called Two Sisters and Ewe, a yarn store in La Mesa. Their website isn't working and I was getting a bit concerned. You know how it is with small businesses and in particular a yarn store - I thought they might be out of business. Thankfully they're still there and are working on their new site and possibly a new domain. ANYWAY, each fall they offer Christmas stocking classes. I think this would be a great opportunity for me to learn to knit intarsia or some other "second color" type method. Carol, the lady that tought me to make mittens, will hopefully call me back with an update on the class.
One of the owners, Jane, also mentioned something about a Knit for Cancer scarf dealy on October 23rd. Now, I was also working with a customer so I wasn't really listening (surprise surprise) so I'm not sure what it's all about. But if it's fund raising or will help someone out in anyway, I'll definitely be there. Besides, who needs an excuse to get together with a bunch of other cackling hens?
I ordered a swift today from Joanns, thanks to Anne's advice about coupons (see earlier posts). I know it's pretty nerdy but I'm pretty damn excited about it. I mean, no more hours upon hours spent untangling and breaking lace yarn!! No more cats grabbing carefully layed out piles of lace and running freely with it as if it were a kite! No more aggravation! Once I get this bad boy home (it's much cooler than it looks in this photo) I'll order a yarn ball winder. Dude. I'm gonna be the cool kid on the block. HAHAHAHA!
Who is secret pal of mine? :)
I chose 106 Bright Pink because I was trying to go outside my comfort zone (with much coaching from Laura and Janet). I'm happy with it too, I love the contrasting colors.
I had originally bought several balls of this yarn in black too, but returned them because the yarn is so fuzzy (due to the "brush"). Unfortunately, I don't think I'll use it much for myself because of this feature. (I have this fear of getting fuzz in my eye, most likely due to getting fuzz in my eye) I'll probably stick to the KnitPicks. But, if you want to make something that has fuzzy, i.e. brushed look, this may be the yarn for you.
I found an excellent article at Knitters Review. Definitely check it out!
Saturday, October 01, 2005
I'm looking forward to making them too, I just need to add them to my growing list of projects. Other projects on the horizon? Socks, socks, socks!! I'm also eyeing over some lace patterns on KnitPicks. When I commit, I'll show you. (You'll learn soon enough I have commitment issues)
Speaking of commitment issues, I finally finished a scarf I started months ago. I bought some baby alpaca yarn with a birthday gift certificate from my good friends Joel, Janet and Laura to make a reversible lace scarf...that was oh...six months ago? GEEZE. I picked this pattern because it's reversible. After I made Faythe's cable scarf set last Christmas, I decided to only knit scarves with reversible patterns. I mean, I LOVE the cable pattern, but who wants to look at the back? If I make it again, I'll knit it with circulars and make it into a tube so you can't see the backside of the cable.
Anyway, I found this scarf the other day and finished it up. (I almost didn't find the pattern online but after using the wonderful Internet Archive's Way Back Machine that caters to the persistant, I managed to locate it. hehe...you can "404 page not found" me, but you cannot hide for long!)
I still need to block it but at least you can see that I finished something. I do think this pattern will look a lot better with a lace yarn. (Do I hear a project calling me?)
I'll get some sleep and post some good stuff here later (good stuff = pictures). For now I'm having a hard time focusing on the screen. Could it be because I'm wearing a weaker-left-eye contact in my right eye? Maybe...things are pretty blurry.
Good news, I figured out what was causing problems on my blog. Well, other than the problems with image uploading, that was bloggers thing. I had posted a stupid quiz the other day and can you believe it - the html of the quiz totally fouled up the html of my blog!! I deleted that bad boy and all is back to normal.
Aimee just called. She woke me up. I was so disoriented when I answered, she had to ask who I was. Anyway, after a five or six hour drive, she's in Albany now. I'm sure she'll give us all the details later.
I wonder if I'm too tired to set up the router?
I wonder if my coworkers noticed I wasn't wearing any makeup?
I wonder if our new coworker thinks I'm really that stooped?
I wonder if I should do anything about my neighbors comment as she pointed at my legs "wow, you really do look pale?" (see photo of supposed hispanic looking girl in upper right corner)
I wonder if KnitPicks will answer my question about whether or not natural fiber will always smell like dog when it's wet?