Friday, June 29, 2007

Knitting with Sloths (3-toed)

This morning I decided to sit in the park and knit for the hour I need to wait till the museum opens. I am growing tired of shopping and it was a beautiful day. I found a very shady area under some trees, looking out at the sloths.

When Eden was little we used to come to the Tar Pits all the time. For those of you who don't know, the Tar Pits are right next to the museum. He especially loved climbing on the sloths. There are actual tar pits where it is almost required that your child steps in and gets tar on his new sneekers. And it doesn't come off! I don't think they had invented Goo-Gone and Mr. Clean Magic Erasures back in those days.

There is also a separate museum that has skulls of a gazillion mountain lions that were dug out of the pits and a lot of other skeletons (no dinosaurs) but Eden called it the dinosaur museum.

I had the foresight to put a beach chair in the back of the car at the beginning of the week. It was so pleasant to sit in the shade and listen to the birds and knit, knit, knit.

I am working on a new sock design, too, from Blue Moon Fiber Arts' Seduction. It is the same lace pattern as the green part of the sweater.

The new Knitter's Magazine has absolutely nothing to do with the sock. But as an aside - I am totally in love with the new designs from Rick Mondragon. If I weren't so obsessed with getting my own designs out of my head and into reality, I'd make up a few from this issue.

At about 12:30 I packed up my stuff and went up to the museum to use the facilities. Got a little salad and happily knit till Eden was ready to go home.

Where I read my 161 e-mails and went back to knitting.

A mitered square from the Kauni. New idea - inspiration struck while at the museum and I needed to see if the Kauni would be good. I am working it on larger needles with the intention of felting it when finished. I've never been a big fan of felting but it will be a handbag and this yarn is just begging to be felted, as it is so scratchy I can never imagine wearing it. And since I have a big lot of it, I need to do something...

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Carol and Her Sweater

I finally saw Carol and was able to give her the sweater I made her last month. This was the second one I made from the Knitter's pattern. I just love the K1C2 Tydy yarn. The sweaters only took a couple of days each, and I would make another one just because I loved making them, but there are too many ideas churning around in my brain to stay stuck on one - that's not even my own.

Don't these colors just look gorgeous on Carol?

Woven in between each stitch are love and prayers for healing.

Knitting at LACMA

Eden's art class at LACMA began this week and I am really enjoying the break in my routine.

His class is from 11 - 2:30, five days a week. The museum is anywhere from 20-45 minutes from our house, depending on the T-Factor (traffic factor). There are WAAYY too many cars on our streets here in LA, sometimes unpredictably more than others, but that rant will be saved for another time, along with the unique way I calm myself as I maneuver it.

Since it would waste an hour or 2 for me to return home (to knit) and then go back and pick him up, I decided I would be knitting at LACMA every day and use that extra time productively.

It is so pleasant there. They don't open until 12, which leaves me an hour to shop at the Grove. I know you don't want to see the 8 shirts and Armani jacket I bought for Reese on Tuesday! (I collect yarn. He collects clothes...and books...and music...and shoes. This is why we need a bigger house...but I digress)

There are several lovely seating areas on a breezy patio where I can sit and knit and eavesdrop on other peoples' conversations.

A very nice cafeteria where I can buy just right the amount of only the ingredients I want from the salad bar, along with an ice tea.

And then I have a lovely couple of hours of working, occasionally stopping to talk to someone who comments on my knitting bag, or my project.

Is it any wonder I am feeling even more inspired than usual?

Stop and have lunch with me if you're in the area. And bring your knitting!

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

I Am Powerless Before Beautiful Yarn

In this case, I believe I over-reacted. But here it is - my shipment of Kauni from Astrid's Dutch Obsessions. One skein of every color she had of Kauni. Interesting colors - very scratchy - along the lines of Philosopher's Wool. I am probably going to MK it and felt it. What I fell for was the long repeats so the yarn stripes rather than puddles or splotches. Will post photos when something gets knit up to my satisfaction. (don't hold your breath)

But a note about Astrid. She couldn't have been more delightful to order from and the yarn arrived very fast - less than a week and a half from Holland!

An FO - a tiny pair of baby socks from the most recent sock kit from Tsarina. Her design didn't 'knock my socks off'. It was this color background with dark brown knitted on lattice work, embroidered green leaves and a row of bright orange pumpkin or tomato things at the top. As much as I loved the Kitri Sock, this one just wasn't my cuppa T. The next one is also a stack of unrelated colors in the concept of a triple decker ice cream cone. I probably won't be making that one, either, but I do love her imagination and give her a lot of kudos for thinking outside of the box.

I am coming to the conclusion that I am too free-spirited to be a sock club member. I haven't used the STR yarn for any of the sock club patterns, either.

It's interesting how many vendors have formed their own clubs, inspired, no doubt, by the astronomical success of Blue Moon (over $400,000 worth of sales for one year in sock club memberships alone) Tina's yarn has got to be among the top 2 I have ever used - the other being Koigu. After that, my favorites include Noro, Collinette, Prism and Malabrigo. And trust me, I am set in case any of them ever go out of business!

I also finished this new pink tote for the November Crafts Show. Sharon and I got our applications in and now are waiting to see if we have been accepted. If not, I will sure have a lot of totes and shawls!

Monday, June 11, 2007

More FO's

Finally, I have a picture of the completed Just One More Row Sweater. I mostly stuck to the pattern, just changed the sleeves and side panels. In order to get the neckline this low, the back is also this low, so it kept falling off my shoulders. I finally solved the problem by crocheting a 1" wide strip and attaching it across the back neck. It worked like a charm and felt really secure when I wore it the other day.

Remember the fairisle sweater I was making after taking the Philosopher's Wool 2-handed fairisle class? Well, it was finished up to the armholes and I was just procrastinating on continuing. Not so much fear of steeking, as reluctance to knit small cuffs and sleeves in the round. Let's be honest - I had just grown bored with the thing! And had also come to the conclusion that a) I would never wear it - too warm for LA. and b) when finished, I would never be able to sell it for the $gazillion$ that would compensate me for the expensive yarn and hundreds of hours of labor.

One day, while working on totes for the California Contemporary Crafts Market (Sharon and I finally got our application finished) I noticed that it was the same width as the totes I usually cover with crochet. And so - after crocheting a nice bottom and adding some embroidery and beads - I now have a fairisle tote - only worth a half a $gazillion$!

Monday, June 04, 2007

Better Late Than Not At All

Here's part of the Memorial Day Barbeque. The roast is having close personal contact with the back end of the chicken. It tasted wonderful!

And I finally got Eden to take a picture of me wearing the pink and green sweater.

And here's what I made with some yarn leftover from the sweater, plus a little bit of this and that.

I have a big laundry basket filled with large plastic bags where I keep the ends of project yarns, sorted by color. This is really convenient when doing freeform or when I need just a little embellishment.

What have I been doing lately? Making one of a kind items for the California Contemporary Crafts Market. My friend, Sharon and I are applying for a booth together. Optimistic of me to be making inventory when I haven't even put in my application yet, let alone been accepted....

I have my 5 photos ready. One of them is the purse above. Here are the others: