Sample Knitting

So, what was I working on Wednesday morning that I couldn't post for?  Well, a local yarn shop had put out a call for sample knitters a few weeks ago. I was able to respond within about 5 minutes of them posting it and got an in to doing some sample knitting for them! I'll reveal what shop it is when I'm all done with the piece.

I showed you the yarn already. 

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It's gorgeous and I love it. It's Forbidden Woolery's Pride Lace in Deathly Hallows. I'm making Sachiko Uemura's Jeweled Cowl. So far, it's going very smoothly and quickly. I've been lucky enough to be able to work on it at my day job during downtime.

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So, that's what I'm working on for the time being. While I was waiting for the yarn to arrive, I did make a pair of socks!

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It's been a while since I had made a pair of socks, and I had never made a pair for myself. I started them on last Thursday, and finished them this Tuesday. It's the fastest I've ever made a sock, let alone a pair of them! I used the Magic Loop method which was another first for me on socks. If you remember, that's how I decided to do the sleeves on my Driftwood Sweater.  

So, yeah! It has been a good knitting week.  

Thoughts on I Love Yarn Day

I didn't mean to miss yesterday's post.  I just had a lot going on at work.  And I was getting more literal rejections from jobs I've applied for.  One even called me but then decided against interviewing me when they heard I was only available on October 21st and wasn't living in San Diego right then.  I did explain my double edged sword dilemma (No one will hire me because I don't live in San Diego, and I can't live in San Diego until someone hires me), but alas.  Oh well.  The hunt goes on.  I have one week left of working this job, and then it's onto San Diego for the job hunting trip (finally). So my day was kind of a downer, but I was cheered up by Amanda (who I taught how to knit socks on Sunday) when she texted me a picture of her first completed wearable sock!  I'm so proud of her.  I cannot tell you how good it makes me feel when I see people I've taught to knit or taught certain techniques to flourish.  Best. Feeling. Ever. Damian shared with me last night a cowl he had finished for his mom with some yarn he dyed in the Indigo vat at school before he left.  Arlyn shows me her projects and planned projects.  If I can teach all of them and have them take off, surely I can teach others professionally?

Also, HAPPY I LOVE YARN DAY!!!!  We all know by now I have a healthy (or maybe not so healthy for my bank account) addiction to yarn.  And I have built up quite the stash since the San Diego Yarn Crawl.  I hope to work in my room this weekend to clean it a bit and maybe organize my stash and plan for future projects.

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New Sweaters and More Socks

On Friday, the yarn for my Driftwood Sweater arrived!  Of course I had to go straight home and wind it all into balls so I could start on my new sweater.  And that's what I spent the rest of the evening doing...winding yarn and starting my sweater.  It's quite easy and addicting to work on!  Clearly...look how far I am. TkVMdvSb7AyYL4Xc.jpg

Just a little more of the body, and then the sleeves and button band and I'm done!  One of the people at work walked by saying, "You'll be done with that by Christmas!" To which I replied, "No, I'll be done with it by next week!"  I'll give you all the details about the yarn, etc. when I'm all finished.

On Sunday I was able to teach another sock knitting lesson!  This time it was with Amanda, one of my Fibers classmates from ASU.  We parked ourselves in a Starbucks after picking up some yarn and needles for her, and spent about two hours working on her first sock.  And it was a success!

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She updated me on Monday that she had even gone ahead and done a second one!

Also on Monday, part of my knitting machine arrived!  I'll tell you more about that another day.  For now, I'm just super excited to learn how to use it.

Artsy Things I Did This Week

Tuesday was the end of the Soak Photo-A-Day Instagram Challenge.  I finished up with this image. vLYd5cSMNLkbRh1L.jpg

It's such a true statement for me...as you might have gathered during the last few months (or maybe just post college).  All I want to do right now is make things with my hands.

Also on Tuesday, I went to the FAN (Fiber Arts Network) Club's show opening, chromoFEELia, at ASU.  It was such a well rounded show.  It really made me miss school and having a studio to work in and a community to work with.  I still keep in touch with classmates, obviously, but it's still really nice to have them all there present.  I was able to see Clare, my Fibers professor, and Damian came up from Tucson to see the show and to see Arlyn and I.  I miss the Fiber Frat so much!

Monday and Tuesday I bought more yarn...you knew this.  It's a problem.  One of the packages is supposed to arrive today and I'm itching to start on my Driftwood Sweater!  The yarn for the Crosby Sweater should come on Saturday, so I guess that one will be second.  Also, I think that I have some buttons that Dylan brought back from Europe for me that will work perfect for one or both of them!  I'm so excited.

My Traveling Woman shawl is coming along.  I really enjoy the easy to remember repeats in the lace section.  I may have messed up the first row of the lace...but oh well.  It's not a mistake, it's a design element!

Onto the weekend...See you next week!

Special Weekend Edition: San Diego Yarn Crawl 2014 Part 1

San Diego Yarn Crawl, September 18-21, 2014 Last Friday after I was off work, it was time to depart Arizona for Southern California.  Our destination: San Diego, for the 2014 San Diego Yarn Crawl!  I stopped to pick up the boyfriend, Dylan, and we headed out to pick up dinner to eat on the way, as well as some coffee for me.  We topped off at a nearby gas station to pick up some snacks for the trip ahead of us, and we were off at about 7:30pm.

The car trip was uneventful.  We made it to San Diego in about 5 and a half hours.  Then it was time for showers and bed.  I felt like a kid before visiting Disneyland (or every time I visit Disneyland).

Saturday, September 20-

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I prepared for the day, collected the essentials and we were off to Panera for breakfast.  After enduring a very manic and demanding woman with a cloak of polite "irreverentness" (Dylan's description), we collected our breakfast and coffee and were headed to our first stop.

Yarns At Border Leather After getting my passport stamped, free gifts and patterns, I walked around a bit to find my purchase.

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Atacama by Araucania DK / 8 ply 100% Alpaca 110 yards / 50 grams

The Grove at Juniper and 30th Our next stop was the site of my internship two years ago.  I was able to see Susan, Anne, and Judy.  Heather of Ewe Ewe Yarns was there, too.  It was so nice seeing all of them and catching up a little.  I always go back to The Grove to say Hi every time I visit.

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Sock by Oink Pigments Fingering / 4 ply 100% Merino 420 yards / 100 grams

I also purchased a small project bag I had been wanting for the past two years, and my San Diego Yarn Crawl tote bag.

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Aranitas Yarn by Sofia Not far away, we arrived at our next stop and after a few minutes of browsing, I found what I was going to be bringing home with me.

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Lace Merino DK by Ella Rae DK / 8 ply 100% Merino 302 yards / 100 grams

Yarn & Thread Expressions Next on the list was this shop.  On this trip I loved seeing the dynamic of each yarn shop.  With a yarn bombed tree outside, we stepped in and were greeted by my passport stamper.  Not long after I found my yarn selection.

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Victoria 4Ply by Aurora Yarns Fingering / 4 ply 100% Polwarth Wool 436 yards / 100 grams

A Simpler Time Alpacas & Mill Onto the first Alpaca farm of the crawl!

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We loved getting to see these gentle animals up close and personal.

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Getting to see the mill and how the fiber is processed was great as well.  I came home with two skeins.

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Alpaca Sport by A Simpler Time Alpacas & Mill Sport / 5 ply 1oo% Alpaca 140 yds / 85 grams

Needlecraft Cottage / The Yarnover Truck I had totally forgotten that the Yarnover Truck was going to be at this location!  After getting my passport stamped, I went outside to go check it out.  I didn't stay too long because I knew I was going to be seeing them the next day.  So, it was back inside to browse, and found a Rouge Baah! skien to take home.

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La Jolla by Baah! Fingering / 4 ply 100% Merino 400 yards / 100 grams

Here is where the crawl ended for the day.  We were exhausted and hangry, so it was off to find food.  After food, I passed out at 6:30pm and didn't get up until 7am.

I will post Part 2 tomorrow!

Anticipation

Ever have projects that you just anticipate the end?  The ones you can't wait to be finished with and hang on the wall, or wear, or whathaveyou?  Mostly for me, I can't wait to finish so I can start the next one.  I try to keep projects lined up, especially if I have yarn or other supplies lying around. I'm not quite actively anticipating any projects at the moment.  There are a couple I have in the back of my mind that I'm thinking about.  I have my yarn that I got in Alaska that I want to start working with, but that's the only one I can really name off the bat what I want to work with right now.

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I'm going to make a Traveling Woman Shawl from it.  I think it's very fitting since I did get the yarn while I was traveling in Alaska.

What are you anticipating?

Knitting Downtime

Yesterday, one of my co-workers made the comment that I must have a really boring 8 hours.  And I'll be perfectly honest: I do.  But I try to occupy myself when I'm not answering phones or working on social media.  Usually I write these posts, browse Facebook for things to post on my page, glance at Ravelry for any new patterns to put in my ever-growing queue, and knit.  I don't like spending all my downtime on the internet, nor do I have any books on my Kindle that are begging for my attention.  So I knit.  I can put it down at a moment's notice if I need to do something, and I can still be totally aware of my surroundings. I started the Laughingbird scarf the first week I started this job.  I don't always work on it, and sometimes when I do I can only put a few rows in.  Some days I'm bored of it, and others I'm totally engaged in it.

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I can't wait to see it when it's all blocked.  I'm hoping that I can get another project going (maybe with some nicer yarn) before the San Diego Yarn Crawl.  I also am looking into getting a project back from Slipped Stitch Studios.  I'm kind of obsessed with their Lost at Sea fabric they've been using for their products.  I have bought way too much stuff of theirs in that fabric and am about to buy more.

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I'm looking into getting the Double Knit Plus Bag in Lost at Sea.  I know I have a ton of project bags that I've made myself already, but I really want this one...because of the fabric.  Believe me, if I knew where to find it, I would buy it all and make so many things with it. ...right after I wrote that, I just went and searched "Lost at Sea Fabric" and I found places to get it.  Damn.  There goes more money down the drain.  I really want to just buy 10 yards of the stuff.  It's a good thing my sewing machine is in storage...obviously that won't stop me from buying it.

I mentioned in a previous post I talked about knitting at work.  It just reminds me of my internship when Susan would say "Okay, enough work, let's go knit." And we would sit down and work on our projects, either personal or for the store, and if someone came in, I was able to pop up and help them.  That's something I really miss.  But no one has made a fuss here yet about me knitting on the job, so until they do, I'm going to do just that. And buy my new project bag.

Next Month's Plans

Can it be September 19 yet?  Cause that's when I plan on heading over to San Diego for the 2014 San Diego Yarn Crawl!  I wasn't able to go to the first one last year, so I'm determined to go this year.  Also, if you haven't noticed (ha.) I'm itching to take a trip to my favorite city.  So many yarn shops over there (as well as couple of Alpaca Farms!) are participating this year, including The Grove at Juniper and 30th, where I interned during Summer 2012.  If you're in the area September 18-21 you should check the crawl out. I'm only able to go Saturday and Sunday due to work, but I still plan on hitting as many stores, if not all, as I can before the event ends! That's all I really have for today...I'm going to be teaching a couple more people how to knit fairly soon.  That always makes me happy.  I really ought to just make a lesson plan that I can use so I can be more organized in teaching. I'll have to eventually!

Have a lovely weekend!

Knitting to Relieve My Stress and Worries

When I sat down to write this post, I wasn't sure what to blog about.  There's only so many times I can rant about wanting my studio, wanting a job in San Diego, and wanting to make art.  I have the ability to make art, just not the art that I want to.  I guess I better take what I can, though. So, while I'm here feeling stressed and struggling, I thought that I better knit.  There have been so many articles this past year about the benefits of knitting.  This one here is one of my favorite articles regarding the subject.  After a few rows, I'm feeling much more calm...though hungry.  I've been craving muffins this week.  No clue why.  IMG_6373

I'd like to start bringing a sketch book to work so I can think of designs I can print when I do have a space to screen print again.  I feel like that, or making any kind of art, would also be beneficial to one's health in a similar way that knitting is.

Anyway, I hope you all have a Happy Friday and a good weekend.  Until Monday...

New Knitting Pretties

IMG_6332 Ever since I got my Nickle Plated Interchangeable Needles from Knit Picks, I've been searching for the perfect case for them.  At first I had one from Knit Picks that was on clearance (I don't think they even have it anymore...and so I cannot link to it, nor do I know where it is off the top of my head after the move), and it did very nicely for a long time.  It was small, compact, 8" or so square in shape when closed, and held all my interchangeable needles, tools and accessories.  I only replaced it with a Della Q Double Interchangeable Needle Case when I got my Caspian Interchangeable Needles earlier this year (I kind of obsessed over them ever since they came out...so pretty!).

The Della Q one is nice, has labels for the needle sizes so you can grab them at a glance, and it had lots of pockets for the tools and accessories and extra space for extra needles and more sizes.  However, my one issue was the zipper pocket that I kept my cables in on the outside.  I would try to coil the cords as tight as I could, but they would always unwind themselves and then it made it hard to fold the right side over properly when I went to close the case.  It worked for a while, though.

Then Damian came home from Christmas '13 (between him, Arlyn and I, it was a very fibery Christmas) with his Pendleton Needle Case.  He showed me the large pockets and how it had space for both sets of needles.  The only issue for me was that it's only sold by Knit Picks, and they only had red (they call it Geranium) and Grey (if I remember correctly, that's the color Damian has...and I wanted something different than what he had, duh).  In the product photos, it looks like they used to have a green one, which would have been absolutely perfect for me, but it was not available.  So I stuck with my Della Q for a bit longer.  Well, when I was on the website a few weeks ago, just checking to see if any other colors came out, I noticed that they were adding a Marine (Navy) color!  It was the next best thing for me...you know, cause I like nautical stuffs, and navy blue seems to be a popular color in all of that.

So I bought it as soon as it was available (end of July), and it arrived this past Wednesday.  I immediately put all of my needles inside, and I love it.  It takes up less space in my Namaste Harlow Bag (I had been considering getting their Build Your Own Binder, but it would have been a little out of my price range...I love the concept though!), doesn't take up space on the table or on my lap when I have to open it up and it's not an ordeal to close it back up.  Everything seems to be staying in its place so far.  I do miss having the sizes labeled on the pockets since I got my Nickle Plated set before Knit Picks started engraving the sizes on the needles.

Also pictured are Caspian Cable Needles and the Yarn Kitten Project Bag. For cabling, I usually just use a DPN instead of an actual cable needle (you know, the curvy ones).  I liked it because all my DPNs are wood so it kept the stitches on the needle better than a plastic or metal cable needle or DPN.  The Caspian Cable Needles were a bit of an impulse buy, but I love the colors so much and they'll be well used.  That also doesn't risk me accidentally misplacing a DPN in my set.  Knit Picks also had a promotion recently that if you spent a certain amount of money, you would get either the Yarn Kitten bag or the Superfine Project Bag for free.  I chose kittens over Feelin' Superfine because...yanno...cats.

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I am no way affiliated with Knit Picks, Della Q or Namaste Inc., nor am I being paid to talk about their products...I just like their stuff.  A lot.

Summertime Update

So, I started this post about two weeks ago.  I suppose I ought to finish it.  I apologize that my hiatus has gone on longer than I anticipated!  I had my Alaskan Cruise in May, was home for a week, then I was off to Boston with my boyfriend's parents to go meet up with the boyfriend there.  After I came home from Boston, I had about two weeks to move out of my apartment.  Moving has always been stressful for me, as I imagine it is for anyone.  But I made it and am now living at my aunt and uncle's in their spare room while I work temp jobs.  Onto the next step: job hunting in San Diego. The cruise was amazing.  I had plenty of time to relax and knit, all the while seeing amazing places.  I even was able to stop into a couple of yarn shops!  One was in Skagway, called Changing Threads.  I bought my souvenir skein here.  The yarn is Raven Frog Elegante, the content is 50/50 Merino and Silk, and the colorway is called Totem Spirit.  I thought that was very fitting due to purchasing it in Alaska.  There was a wonderful lady in the shop who fawned over my Lonely Tree shawl and Hello Sailor handwarmers I was wearing that day.  Together we excitedly discussed fibers and knitting.  She even let me hold some Qiviut fiber!  SO SOFT AND WARM AND LIGHT AND UGHHHH.  I want some.  I don't know what I'd do with it, other than just probably pet it.  I digress.  I should have given them my card, because I asked for the lady's name, but now I've forgotten.  So, if anyone knows the names of the lovely employees of Changing Threads in Skagway, Alaska, please let me know so I can remember who it was who was that assisted me in the shop!

I also visited Seaside Yarns in Juneau.  I saw it when we drove by on the way to the excursion we went on there, so obviously I had to go back afterward to check it out.  I purchased a small project bag there to keep the needlepoint project I had on the ship.

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I also went next door to Changing Tides Needleart.  I wish we had all of their fabrics in Arizona!  Walking in there really made me miss sewing.

In Vancouver, there were a couple of shops on Granville Island that sold Fiber Art related things.  One was called Maiwa and it had so many dyes and yarn and fabric.  I also saw the Silk Weaving Studio there.

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While I'm not too excited by weaving, it was great to see all the looms and know exactly what was happening, and to not be wondering  just how they work.

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I had a funny thing happen to me on the second day of the cruise.  I was sitting up in the lounge knitting, watching the scenery go by, when I heard someone come up behind me and say, "I cannot tell you how good it is to see you knitting!" (Or something along those lines.)  It was Paul and Carol Mulvey of Black Sheep Wools! It was so great meeting them and being able to talk with them a little bit.

I wasn't able to do much knitting in Boston with all the sight seeing and visiting the boyfriend on the ship.

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I was able to go see Quilts and Color exhibition, The Pilgrim/Roy Collection, at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts.  While I'm not a quilter, it was so great to see these pieces of functional art up close.

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Anyway, I better stop with my updates there.  Until I have a chance to write again, and it should be soon since I just finished another shawl last week, I hope you're having a great summer full of crafting and making.

Knitting Plans

After the last couple of weeks, I feel as if I haven't made a whole lot this week.  I was thinking about it last night and I average about one knitted item a week and am usually working on some other project at the same time (usually unrelated to knitting).  Typically I'm not a one project knitter.  I have a scrap blanket in the works, and plans for another blanket.  When I was working on my Embrace Sweater, I kept that one at home and took another project (I think it was my Doctor Who shawl) out and about with me. Right now I'm solely working on a Sea Foam Cowl that I'm using up some stash yarn with.  Last week I was moving (*gasp!*) all of my stash into my new storage unit, because, you know, I'm moving.  But, I made sure to pull out some yarn I totally forgot I had so that I had something to use this summer.  This is due to me realizing I was almost done with my list of projects I had planned for last year.  I think, also, that's why I started working on one thing at a time.

I was also a bit bad, and bought some new yarn last week.  I couldn't resist it.  It's Wanton Fiber's Tart in the Koi colorway.  It's Alpaca and Silk...so soft and heavenly!  It came all wrapped up like this:

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And when I opened it....ERRMERGERD.  I love it so much.  It's sitting next to my knitting spot as motivation for me to finish the Sea Foam Cowl and start knitting with the Tart yarn.

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I've already planned what project I'm going to make with it.  I've been wanting to make Purl Bee's Bandana Cowl.  With a little math, I was able to adapt the bulky gauge pattern to comply with my new sport weight.  I hope to finish it before my trip to Alaska, because it's going to be super warm and soft up against my neck.

I also made more project bags on Monday.

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I made a total of 7, two are the foxes.  I made a second one for a coworker who also knits.  I really hope she likes it because it's a total surprise.  The two on the far right are for Den because I gave her a refresher on knitting.

So, there's really no excuse why I shouldn't have a tutorial for these.  I was good a took pictures to make a tutorial for tomorrow's blog post.  That's all I have for you today, so please stop back tomorrow for the project bag tutorial!

Lots of Knits

As if I don't already knit quickly, I finished my Glam Shells shawl this week. I really like how it came out. I was afraid the pattern might be a little cliché, but I really enjoyed it! The body was an easy repeat to remember and the lace went quickly. 20140417-002918.jpg

I just finished another Age of Brass and Steam Kerchief. This one is for Damian for his graduation! He had some Plymouth Yarn Company Gina that he got from The Grove a few months ago and asked if I'd make it for him. Two day (probably less if I really put my mind to it) project!

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And finally, something that I'm even more excited about...I made my own stitch markers!

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I used charms and split rings from Michael's.  Damian, Den and I were browsing the charms when we came up with the idea.  I can't wait to start using some of them soon!

I also found some yarn in my stash that I can use for more knitting in the coming months.  I'm traveling a bit

Projects and Project Bags

Today has been kind of busy, but I wanted to tell you about what I've been working on this week! For Christmas, I made Arlyn and Damian project bags for their knitting projects (or whatever else they wanted to carry in them).  Not long ago, I decided to make myself one and also found fabric for Arlyn and Damian that I couldn't resist.  I ended up making them each another.  A few weeks ago, Damian asked if I would be willing to make more bags for him, and of course, I said yes.  So, last Saturday, we went on an adventure to pick out more fabric for more project bags.  On Monday, I sat down and made two for Damian and two for myself.

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The process is super easy.  I plan to make a tutorial to post here at some point.  Ideally, I'd like to be able to sell the bags, but they're just so simple that I'd probably just be better off making a tutorial to show you so you can make your own.  I started writing the tutorial down as I was making these ones, but I forgot (of course) to take pictures.  So, next time, friends!

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Also, on Monday, I finished my Age of Brass and Steam Kerchief!  I blocked it that evening and wore it on Tuesday.  I added three extra repeats since I was using a lace weight/fingering gauge yarn (Zitron Filigran in the Ocean colorway) when the pattern asks for DK weight.  It's a little bigger than the original.

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Right now, I'm working on a Glam Shells shawl.  The yarn I'm using is just so perfect, and I didn't even realize until I started making it!  The yarn is Itata Solid by Araucania and contains wool, bamboo and silk.  The mix of these three fibers gives it a certain texture that reminds me of nets, which is very fitting since part of the shawl looks like a net.  I didn't quite get the best in progress picture, but I'll be sure to post a final picture when I get to it so you can see the pattern better.

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So, yes, that is what has been happening in way of projects.  I did try to start working on antlers for my felted deer yesterday, but everything I was trying didn't seem to work out.  I tried crocheting around the antlers, sewing fabric around them...nothing was really working out.  I then decided to make wire forms and then I'll cover them in foil and felt around them.  I'll write about that in another post soon.

See you tomorrow!

Inspiration Thursday: Two Inspiring Knitters

As I was browsing blogs I frequent yesterday, I came across Ysolda Teague's post on Stephen West.  I follow them both on Instagram and knew that they had been knitting together a few weeks ago.  (I maybe fangirled a little, due to them both being a couple of my favorite knitters and designers.)  Anyway, Ysolda posted a video of how Stephen knits.  It blew my mind. [vimeo 90128642 w=500 h=281]

(Video belongs to Ysolda Teague.)

Just seeing how FAST he knits is an inspiration!  If I could do that, think of how many things I'd make!

Stephen West also just brings a smile to my face.  Enjoy this video about making Pom Poms!

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k4yWU5gt-k4?rel=0]

(Video belongs to Stephen West.)

See more of Ysolda Teague's patterns here, and Stephen West's patterns here.

Project Progress: What I'm Knitting Right Now

Good morning! I thought I might show you what's on my needles right now.

After finishing my Doctor Who shawl, I decided to dig in my planned projects bag.  I pulled out my Zitron Filigran yarn to be used with The Age of Brass and Steam Kerchief pattern.  I had been wanting to make it ever since I saw it at The Grove during my internship.  As the pattern calls for DK weight, and Filigran is fingering to lace weight yarn, I'm going to have to add a lot more repeats to get it to the size I want.  Honestly, it's going pretty quick for being such a small gauge of yarn.  Also, the colorway is perfect for me.  Of course, it's called Ocean, and it keeps me pretty engaged, wondering when the next color will show up!

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Also on my needles is something I picked back up.  I had an itch to work with Ewe Ewe's Wooly Worsted again.  I remembered that my friend Amanda had asked me to make a Puzzle Pieces changing mat for her future children.  I had kind of set it aside for a while to focus on other things, since she doesn't plan on having kids right this second.  But I needed something with instant gratification yesterday.  I can make each piece in about 30 minutes.  I probably made about 6 or 7 yesterday alone.

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So, that's what I've been working on this week.  I need to do a little more work on my felted deer, which is sitting neglected in the corner by the kitchen table.  Whoops.

See you tomorrow!

Switching It Up

Have you noticed new things on the blog lately?  I got some miraculous motivation to work on some documents for a professional packet that needed to be uploaded that I had had on my previous blog.  Finally! They should be all up to date and available for you to see. I also put up some art pictures!  Please go look and enjoy!

I've been meaning to write another post for a while.  I also have been meaning to switch up my schedule.  I know I keep saying both of these things, but it will eventually happen, I promise!  More on that when I figure out exactly what I'm doing on here again.

I don't feel as monotonous as I have lately.  I've been trying to clean and organize.  The possibility and reality of moving out of my apartment is looming over my head.  My emotions are like a roller-coaster.  One day I'm okay and everything is feeling fine.  The next, I'm so paralyzed by stress, I lay in bed looking at the ceiling as the tears drip from the outer corners of my eyes.  Today I've been diffusing essential oils and that seems to be helping with my energy levels and motivation.  I always feel like doing things when I use the Citrus Fresh oil from Young Living.  I mixed it with lavender, and now my living room smells amazing.

ANYWAY.  What's new?

I took a trip to Hawaii in February with my boyfriend and his parents.  It was much needed (though I feel like I need another vacation from my life with all this stress happening upon me).

Photo Feb 10, 9 14 57 PM

I didn't get as much vacation knitting done as I thought I might, but it was REALLY nice to just be able to calm my mind and relax.  It's been 10 years since I had been on any of the Hawaiian Islands.  We were on the Big Island which I had never been to before.  It was gorgeous.  We could see the whales from our resort and went out on a catamaran to see them closer.  It was amazing.

Photo Feb 14, 12 53 13 PM Photo Feb 14, 11 56 14 AM

I finished my Embrace Sweater.  It's huge on me, but comfy, and I'm happy with it.  It'll probably be one of those items of clothing that I'll want to pull on when it's chilly out, and I'm just curled up on the couch.

Photo Mar 19, 11 21 53 PM

I also made a headscarf out of the silk yarn the boyfriend brought back from Stockholm last year.  Two day project and I'm satisfied by making another thing.  The boyfriend and I went to San Diego before he left for the Caribbean (more about that in a second) and I got some buttons from The Grove to put on the headscarf.

Photo Mar 20, 6 48 53 PM

Also in San Diego, I got one of the chairs from The Grove.  Stella has taken a liking to it.

Photo Mar 19, 11 56 43 PM

I ordered two taxidermy deer head forms to begin progress on my felted creatures.

Look at it's cute, derpy smile!

I dyed wool and began seriously working on the project after I finished my sweater.  I feel like since that sweater is done I am able to focus more on other things.  Everyone who I talk to about the felted animals seems to be eager to have one.  I really hope that they come to be something I can produce and sell this time around.  I think it'll also help that they're to be put up on the wall instead of sitting on a pedestal.  Even I have an aversion to sculptures that collect dust.  The boyfriend and I found some mounted antlers at the antique mall for me to use as reference for the antlers I'm going to make to put on the deer forms.  Not quite sure how I'm going to do this yet, but I'll figure it out when the time comes.

Photo Mar 06, 6 26 43 PM

I FINALLY finished my Doctor Who shawl last night, and started on a hat for a friend of the boyfriend's.  Not much else is planned as far as knitting goes.  I've kind of, sort of, given up buying yarn for Lent.  I know, I know, how am I surviving?  But I think it'll be good, both for my budget and my yarn stash.  That way I can start on those projects I had planned for last summer that already have patterns and yarn assigned to them.

Doo wee doo!!

So, back to the boyfriend being in the Caribbean.  I had about two weeks notice to him leaving for the summer (I wasn't pleased with this at all).  He's working on another ship.  But, even though he's away, I know he's doing something that he's always wanted to do, so I'm being as supportive as I can.  Doesn't mean I don't miss him any less.  He's only been gone a week, and it feels like forever to me.  I think that might be part of my stress...I'm so used to spending so much time with him, that when he's not here, I have this huge gap in my day.  I don't really have him as an outlet to discuss what I'm stressing over because I'm not able to talk to him much, but he was able to call me last night, and it really lifted my spirits.

Photo Mar 13, 2 28 48 PM

Anyway, hopefully that covered everything.  I'm going to try to take it easy and knit some more.  Until next time, or until I figure out a better blogging schedule...

Converting the Roommate to Knitting

Happy Friday everyone! The knitting addiction is back.  Over the past couple of months, I've felt rather uninspired with my knitting and yarn in general.  A scandal for me, if I might say.  However, last spring I taught my roommate, Damian, how to knit.  He was gone all summer, and since coming back to school, he's been busy.  But the other night, he picked up the piece he was learning to knit on and took off with it.  He has caught the knitting bug!  He took his little sample piece to class with him all day yesterday and made such progress.

Last night I was able to discuss with him the differences of garter and stockinette stitches, yarn gauge and needle sizes, and all those other knitting knowledge essentials.  And then I put him on Ravelry so that he might see all the things that he could possibly make with two sticks and some string.  Damian's eyes were opened to all the new possibilities.  So exciting!

I got called in to work today, so I'm off to go do that for three hours, and then Den and I are going to Canal Convergence in Scottsdale.  I believe it goes on until 4pm on Sunday, November 10, so if you're in the area, come check it out!  Lots of art stuffs.  I'm sure I'll write something on it next week.  Until then, have a good weekend!