Sunday, January 29, 2006

Spiders Dye Day

Yesterday my partner and I had 16 lovely ladies over our house for a full day of eating, drinking, knitting, and of course yarn dyeing. The festivities began at 1 pm and we didn't finish till close to 10 pm! Most of the Spiders were there a few of which I had actually never met before - Carrie, Julsey, Iraida, Sarah and her sister Mary, as well Jess (she's not a spider but we won't hold that against her!) all of you gals are great and I can't wait for us all to get together again.

I loved eyeing all the great projects they had on the needles as well as the colorways each one came up with (I was taking mental notes for my next yarn update!!! Thanks girls!). Some additional excitement came when Amanda got stuck in the bathroom for a good 15 min. or so - I broke out the drill and took the plate off but that didn't do anything. We were struggling for a while till Stephanie saved the day and promptly opened the door with a knife in like 30 sec! go Steph!

Also in attendance were Lisa, Abby, Veronique, Sarah, Joy, Sandra, Katie, and Kaitlyn. Thank you all for making the end of a very difficult week, full of having a cold and food poisoning, great for me! We will definitely be having more of these dye days.

Lots of knitting action here
Don't you love Katie's new accessories?
That's one huge tub of yarn - over 40 hanks!
All steamed and ready to be rinsed
Rinsed and hanging to dye - aren't the colorways lovely?
Can you tell a good time was had?

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Yesterday was...

My Birthday! And can you guess what I did? Did I go dancing? - nope, have a romantic dinner with E? - nope, spend time with my family? - nope....I'll tell you - I was home sick! Actually both E and were home sick...we were like two beached whales on the couch all day. We both had fevers and took the day off of work. Good thing we had Netflix movies to keep us in our close to comatose state. We watched Flight Plan and The Island, both of which were better than I had expected. So with all this laying around you'd think I got some knitting done...again nope. I just didn't feel like picking up the needles. I pre-drafted some fiber for future spinning but no knitting progress whatso ever! I don't even have any good pictures to show you but since I feel like blogs are so much better with pictures I have to show you something...

This is Gary the baby of the family he is the most cute when he is sleeping cause he can't get into trouble!

He loves to help me rewind yarn!

And a Meme I was taggted for by Natasha and Sylv

Four jobs you have had in your life:

1. Insurance clerk at an eye surgery center - terribly boring but I worked with a funny bunch of ladies so it wasn't too bad.
2. Law clerk - basic filing and copying crap while I was in HS this was my first job I got lucky and as a kid dind't have to go the fast food route.
3. Legal Assistant - part time all through college - 3 full days a week and the other two days in class from 8-6:30 can you tell I dind't do much partying in college
4. Paralegal - I've been here 8 years...oh yeah 8 years...started in college and have been here ever since

Four (random) movies you
could watch over and over:

1. The Fifth Element - gotta love the Divas song.
2. The Sting - the best con artist movie ever
3. The Goonies - if it's on I must watch it...boobie trap...ahhhhh
4. Any cheesy 80's Brat pack movie - they are so terrible they are great!

Four places you have lived:

1. Born in the Bronx
2. Moved to CA from 2-4 yrs. - lived in El Cajon, Escondido, Julian, Oceanside
3. Back to the Bronx
4. Last year made the move to Brooklyn - I felt like a traitor to the Bronx...the whole Bronx / Brooklyn rivalry thing...I'm over it..I swear!

Four TV shows you love to watch:

1. LOST - boy how I look forward to that show although I wasn't too thrilled with last nights episode - I hope they come back to it cause it seemed to be a total waste of time
2. L-Word - although this season for me has gotten off to a show start - too much whining not enough action!
3. House - don't you just love the totally bizaare diseases and disorders they come up with?
4. Good Eats on the food network - Alton Brown rocks!

Four places you have been
on vacation:

1. Italy - 3 years in a row - a week in Florence, Rome, then Venice - in that order.
2. Prague - What an amazing city so pretty
3. Cancun - oh I've been there like 4 times and I never get tired of the beach
4. Spain - Barcelona and Madrid - I went in HS with my Chorus we spent almost 2 weeks touring and singing there so amazing - my first trip away from my parents and firs titme out of the country.

Four websites you visit daily:

1. Bloglines - it's and addiction
2. Google - for gmail and also for the random things I look up and research everyday - what did I do before Google???
3. Yahoo Instant messenger
4. Hotmail for the other email account which is very unreliable...but still must be read

Four of your favourite foods:

1. CHOCOLATE in all it's incarnations
2. Guacamole - oh how I love thee and thou green lusciousness atop a tortilla chip
3. Baked Ziti - my staple party meal (some of you will get to taste this on Sat!)
4. Ice Cream - Ohh Coldstone Ice cream - if you haven't had it go and find one - heaven I tell you

Four places you would rather
be right now:

1. On vacation - the next one is going to be Amsterdam but I have to wait till May for that
2. Home sleeping
3. Shopping for yarn and fiber - although I do that often enough online
4. Basically anyplace other than work

Four Boggers youa re tagging....

consider yourself tagged if you haven't been tagged already for this Meme!

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Thank you - Thank you

I want to thank everyone for all the lovely comments, support and help in making my yarn shop a sucess!!

I've sold out of yarn but don't worry I hope to have another update on Monday. I've got some exciting things happening and in a few weeks I'll have a great superwash sock yarn - it reminds me of koigu with a nice tight twist and great stitch definition. The best thing about it is you can throw it right into the washing machine - so be on the lookout for it.

I have been knitting, albeit not all that much. I started the Flower Basket Shawl - my first forey into the world of lace and chart reading. It took a little time and lots of help from Veronique and Virginia for me to get cast on and figure out how to read these annoying charts! Thanks girls you rock! It's so nice to have such a talented group of friends to learn from. Since I haven't had "quality" knitting time where I can sit down and concentrate on a pattern I don't have much done but here is the measly progress shot:

If I stretch it out I can see two cute little flower baskets - I'm going to have to stop stretching it out because I'm going to make the yarn all ratty with my pulling and tugging. I have to accept that with lace the progress is slow and you don't really see all the details till you block it. In the pic I have it in straight needles but I can't stand them so I went out and bought addis and it's much smoother going.

I've also cast on last night, while on the train, for the second dublin bay inspired sock - I really am loving the toe up thing and I've got a hang of the figure 8 cast on and magic loop method. I am not a fan of provisional cast ons. The act of unravling the beginning of my knitting freaks me out a little. I won't post a pic till the pair is done I don't want to bore you.

Here is a little spinning I've done between LYS order spinning. It's plain jane spinning - no sparkle or fluff just me and the fiber working to make yarn. The top is bulky merino 2-ply, then bulky Alpaca 2-ply, and DK 2-ply Blue Faced Leicster (so great to spin!)

I'll leave you with a picture of freshly dyed fiber - I wish I had a room full of this - I'd jump in it and fall asleep like my cats do!

Friday, January 20, 2006

Fiber Friday

First - YARN SHOP UPDATE!!!! go check it out!

Now for the Yarn P*rn

To the right you see the yarn shop update and your the left you see the yarn headed for The Point

This is one giant cake of yarn it's the same type of yarn I used for the Jaywalkers but this time dyed with Lavender, hot pink and brown - I am diggin this color combo. I haven't weighed it but I think it's about 6 ounces! I can probably knit 2 pairs of short socks with this much yarn. It's not up for sale because I think it's alittle too pilly - and I don't mind it for myself but I want what I sell to be of the best quality.

Speaking of quality I've been searching for new sock yarns here is a superwash dyed in a rainbow of colors:

this is an 8 oz skein that I have not yet reskeined. Most likely I'll knit myself some socks with it and see how I like it. Already it has a lot going for it - it's superwash so it won't felt and it's spun tightly very much like KPPPM and it takes dye really well - I've got very vibrant colors. The only problem I can see is that it looks a little fine - like it might need to me knit on 0's but 1's might do and it's fairly expensive. I'll keep looking!

Ohh I finished my toe up dublin bay inspired sock yesterday - a personal best it only took me a week to get this one done.

The colors came out nice it reminds me of trekking. There is another lace panel on the back - I think full stockings with only the lace up the back would look oh so sexy, warm, but sexy especially in black! I digress, I haven't yet cast on for the second sock but I will tongiht.

I'm also going to get help tonight with the cast on for the Flower Basket Shawl...I'm excited. I'll have the sock for my train knitting and the shawl for home knitting.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

The new Meme on the block

I've been tagged! But before I get to that Here is a sneak peak at some of the yarn which will be up for sale at the end of the week!

Now off to the Meme...

Instructions: Remove the blog in the top spot from the following list and bump everyone up one place. Then add your blog to the bottom slot.
making (nee stitch marker)
step into my thimble

Brooklyn Handspun

Then select five people to tag:


What were you doing 9 years ago?
Let's see - 9 years ago I was in college struggling with my BORING classes and trying to figure out a major which wouldn't drive me too crazy. I was trying to justify going to NYU and getting a "regular" BA as opposed to going to a conservatory to pursue opera. I told myself it was because I didn't want to be waitressing after I graduate so I needed a back up career. I've still got mixed feelings about it - On the one hand I met E in college and If I had gone to conservatory I never would have, I found my job while I was there through career services and I've been here ever since, and I am not waitressing, I did get to take voice lessons in College although not at the intensity I would have liked. On the other hand one of the girls I went to HS with went to the conservatory I would have wanted to go to and she is now singing mainstage at the Pittsburgh opera....oh well I'm not out of the game yet!

What were you doing 6 years ago?

Graduating college, then working full time and hating it - still do! Taking Voice lessons and naively thinking that I was going to be singing mainstage at the met by the time I was 30...HAHAHAHA yeah right. It's a lot harder than that, but I've still not given up my dream - it might not be at the met but I'll be singing mainstage in a few years!

What were you doing one hour ago?
Writing letters and other boring stuff here at work.

Name 3 movies you can't turn off if you stumble across them on television.

The 5th Element - I don't know what it is but I HAVE to watch it - maybe it's because of the giant blue diva

Any con artist movie like Ocean's 11(12) or The Sting - it must be my Bronx upbringing

Any Movie or TV show that has to do with WWII

one more....any NOVA or national Geographic Presentation...I live for the nerd channels - History, Discovery, TLC, and National Geographic

Name 3 things you want to improve upon this year.
Time management

Weight control

Learn more knitting techniques and finish more objects!

Name 3 things you can't live without
My Iriver Mp3 player and voice lesson recorder



Name 3 things you could....
My Commute to work

Work - if I were somehow independently wealthy

My Commute home from you see a pattern here?

Name 3 things you really like about yourself.
My ability to teach myself techniques and various hobbies from books

My eyes - although they are often covered by glasses and many people don't even know I have Green eyes

I'm outgoing and have no problem talking with total strangers...I meet some wonderful people like that.

Monday, January 16, 2006

Jaywalker Pics

Here we have my finished jaywalkers...YAY!

I made a few mistakes but hey it's only my 3rd pair of socks! Not too shabby me thinks. I really like the way they came out. The yarn I used was a wholesale two ply which I then dyed (I had originally wanted more vibrant colors but I was impatient with the dyeing process and I rinsed them way too soon. But I love my Sweettart jays - I wore them all day yesterday.

I've also made progress on the toe up magic loop sock -

I took the advice of my lovely commenters (I love you girls!) and did a short row heel - the instructions in my sock book looked more complicated than they were and it didn't take too much time at all. I then was thinking about some kind of pattern for the leg, I wanted something with a little lace feel but not too open so I took the pattern from the Dublin bay socks I originally saw on Beth's site. The only thing I did was change the positioning of the lace panel from the sides to the front and back. These are flying off the needles I'm pretty close to done with this one and I only started on Thursday.

This little lace stitch is the first one I've ever tried - after the socks are done I'm going to jump right in to the flower basket shawl. I hope the lace goddess is with me!

Friday, January 13, 2006

Just a quick update

My Jaywalkers are done!!! Finally! I don't have a pic now but I'll update this post as soon as I can. I don't know why they took so long but I relly love them and will most likely start another pair soon.

I've also been trying out the magic loop technique and I think I've got it down. I started a toe up sock yesterday and so far so good.

I did a figure 8 cast on which I didn't find too bad (I was way too lazy to do any provisional cast on). I increased every round cause I'm impatient and I have squareish toes so it's perfect. I got a little laddering before I realized I needed to have the cable in more of a figure eight so I can get a tight join. Now I'm fretting over the heel...I have no pattern that I'm following since it's a simple stockinette sock but I'm going to have to find something to figure the heel out. Once I get passed the heel I'm going to see what kind of lacy stitch would look nice and work with the number of stitches I have - 72.

Yesterday I was supervising a funiture move for my office and I basically sat knitting for a few hours - that's my idea of a cool job! but I also took a few pics - I love the city...

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

SP7 Questionnaire

Ohh I am so excited to join this time - I missed out on the last one so here are my answers...

Update for my SP...I forgot #13....lucky could I forget you....

1. Are you a yarn snob (do you prefer higher quality and/or natural fibers)? Do you avoid Red Heart and Lion Brand? I swore I wasn’t going to become a yarn snob, but the inevitable has happened I am now I am – especially after learning to spin! I’m not a fan of acrylic – it squeaks too much.

2. Do you spin? Crochet? I spin…a lot

3. What do you use to store your needles/hooks in? - an old tin

4. How long have you been knitting? Would you consider your skill level to be beginner, intermediate or advanced? – a few years I’d say intermediate I really didn’t start making stuff other than scarves and shawls until 4 months ago – and now all I want to do is knit new things – especially socks!

5. Do you have an Amazon or other online wish list? – nope but I’ll have to start one

6. What's your favorite scent? (for candles, bath products etc.) I like clean smells like linen and flowery ones like honeysuckle…no vanilla!

7. Do you have a sweet tooth? Favorite candy? Oh yes – chocolate…especially if it has hazelnuts in it…ohh Nutella (if you haven’t had it you MUST try it)

8. What other crafts or Do-It-Yourself things do you like to do? I design and make jewelry

9. What kind of music do you like? Can your computer/stereo play MP3s? (if your buddy wants to make you a CD) I’m a big music fan of almost all genres and yes I can play MP3s

10. What's your favorite color? Or--do you have a color family/season/palette you prefer? Any colors you just can't stand? My fav. color is anything in the purple family…I tend to like autumn colors deep lush colors.

11. What is your family situation? Do you have any pets? I live with my partner and our 3 kitties

12. Do you wear scarves, hats, mittens or ponchos? I do except for ponchos

13. What is/are your favorite yarn/s to knit with? hmm this is a very difficult question!!! and one of the most important...lets see I generally love it all!!! ok, I really enojoy all types of sock yarn and I don't have too much of it in my stash at the moment - like Cherry Tree Hill, Koigu, I've been salivating for the much coveted Trekking xxl in colorway 100. I also love most of karabella yarns. Hey if it's soft and pretty I'll like it!

14. What fibers do you absolutely *not* like? Acrylic

15. What is/are your current knitting obsession/s? socks socks socks

16. What is/are your favorite item/s to knit? Umm see #15

17. What are you knitting right now? See #15

18. Do you like to receive handmade gifts? Oh yeah

19. Do you prefer straight or circular needles? Circular all the way

20. Bamboo, aluminum, plastic? Addis first and then bamboo

21. Do you own a yarn winder and/or swift? Yup

22. How did you learn to knit? I taught myself form a learn to knit book

23. How old is your oldest UFO? A scarf I’ve been knitting for about a year but it’s an on going thing I use up leftovers for the never ending scarf

24. What is your favorite animated character or a favorite animal/bird? Anything with cats

25. What is your favorite holiday? Any one where I get gifts!

26. Is there anything that you collect? Other than yarn and fiber…not really..unless you count my tons of books

27. What knitting magazine subscriptions do you have? I don’t have any

28. Any books, yarns, needles or patterns out there you are dying to get your hands on? I’ve got a lot of books, I can always use some cherry tree hill sock yarn, and addi turbo circs in size 2

29. Are there any new techniques you'd like to learn? I’ve got a lot to learn but nothing in particular

30. Are you a sock knitter? What are your foot measurements? Oh yes I am a sock knitter – my measurements are ankle – 9 in Length 9.5 in , 2 ¾ inch from bottom of ankle bone to the floor – I’m a size 8 1/2

31. When is your birthday? (mm/dd) 1/25

Saturday, January 07, 2006

Stash of Shame

Now for the contents of those yarn bins - I figure maybe I can shame myself into stashbusting - I've got a few projects in mind but who knows when I am going to find time to bust this stuff. Not to mention that I know I have very little self control when it comes to buying yarn so it'll keep growing no matter what I do - although now I have much better taste hehee.

without further ado here it is...

My most recent purchases - regia self stripe sock yarn, Cherry Tree Hill sock yarn and misti alpaca lace (for my Flower Basket Shawl.

Some fun stuff - 4 skeins of art yarns ballet, karabella gossamer, glitz, matrix, pixel and a black and glittery KSH.

My eyelash stash (I know you all have some) from my scarf selling days - I swear eyelash was all people wanted! I'll proably spin these into my own yarn for a funky effect. 10 Skeins of Recycled sari silk - I plan to make the bias bag from knitty with these.

My stash of GGH aspen - why do I have so many you ask?? because it was on super sale who could pass up $2 a ball???? certainly not I. I think I'l make some hats and arm warmers in funky stitch patterns - they should show nicely with this yarn.

Acrylic - got some lions brandhomespun, some martha stewart from walmart (I was going to make an afghan but it'll take too long!)

More Acrylic

all of my mohairy stuff - again from scarf knitting days.

Let see here I have Karabella souffle which is discontinued although I think I have enough for a light sweater about 10 balls
(not all in the pic) or maybe a short sleeve one, umm 4 balls of aurora 8, 20 balls of merino sock yarn from ebay, Lambs pride bulky, wool ease T&Q, Patons upcountry, and some no named wool - well at one point it had a name but I lost the tags, and some dale freestyle.

So there is what the hell do I do with it? I'm thinking that I will start Christmas knitting now lots of hats and scarves!

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Spin Spin Spin

My knitting has been suffering but I have been spinning to pick up the slack.

Here are 5 skeins and I'll be spinning up 5 more - another purple, 2 orange, and 2 blue. These are all for The Point I should have all 10 washed dried and ready to go by monday. I hope these are liked as much as the last batch - actually I like these more.

I've got a bunch of stuff to go off to kpixie too:

There are about 12 skeins here! I'm going to feel naked when all of this yarn leaves the house - I hate not having anything in stock, which means I besta get spinning so I can update my own Shop - actually I have added a couple of handpainted sock yarns - check them out!

So in the spirit of stashbusting in 2006 here is a sneak peak of the stash I have to sort through
- I'll have pictures of the contents tomorrow!

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Happy New Year - a little late

Happy New Year everyone, I wanted to thank all of my new blogging friends, those who I've met in person, the Spiders and Stephanie, and those whom I've had the pleasure of chatting with online. You've made my online experience wonderful with all of your comments, suggestions and inspiration.

It's amazing how much better my Knitting and spinning has gotten since I've been blogging. I think that having to come up with stuff to post has really gotten me to finish projects and begin projects with more difficulty - I mean before the blog I had only dyed with kool aid and knit scarves and simple garter shawls! Now I've got a professional dyeing set up, and have a hold on knitting socks!

Before I get to my goals for 2006 knitting and spinning wise I've got some freshly dyed fiber to show.

These rovings are going to be spun and then sent off to the point next week hopefully I'll get 10 skeins spun - 2 of each color - by next week. I think I can do it...maybe even by friday!

I've also been inspired by Julie to get more organized and this is my first step.

I've put most of my roving and some of my yarn in bins. I've used my trusty p-touch labler to label all of them - I've got colored roving, (which might be going on ebay soon - this was before I started to dye my own) Natural roving, Natural dyeing yarn, Odds and Ends Yarn (those pesky bits that are too much to throw out but too little for a whole project), and some uncarded fiber and few pounds of mohair curls. I have 4 or 5 more bins, slightly smaller, of yarn which I'll have to organize. And as you can see in this picture my "little" library needs serious organizing as well. I'll be having fun with my little labler...hehee.

So my knitting goals of 2006 are:

1) Knit something lace - I've got the FB shawl all ready to go I'm just going to have to have Veronique and Virginia help me along and answer all my obvious and anoying questions...sorry girls but I have a feeling I'm going to be as dumb as a doorbell with this one.

2) Learn to cable - most likely I'll incorporate a single cable on a sock at first but who knows I might just end up going cable crazy.

3) Knit a sweater or some other sweater like garment - I'm thinking of the hourglass sweater it doesn't look very scary and it might actually look nice on me!

4) The Clapotis which everyone in blogland has already knit except for me.

5) Spin sock yarn that I am happy with...I'm working on this'll see soon.

6) much much more...that I can't think of right now ...oh yeah knitting up the stash - like that is going to happen - yeah right!