Saturday, December 06, 2008

hooray beret, take 2!

Quick update:

I think I may have perfected my pattern for the perfect amount of slouch. After a few missteps of not decreasing properly (does anyone want a beret that comes to a gnome-like point?) and re-reading some Elizabeth Zimmerman, I figured out how I wanted to do my beret, and here you go!

(don't mind the photo - it was midnight and I was paler than usual, but thrilled with my completed hand knit in all its slouchy glory)

I have another on the needles right now for xmas presents! Hooray!

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

hooray beret!

Hello my lovelies!

I've been doing a fair bit of dyeing lately, but I must get myself in gear for Christmas knitting! I think I've fallen head over heels in love with the beret. I started knitting up Le Slouch, but I wasn't sure I wanted something that drapey. I had seen the lovely Miss Click Clack's beret's on Ravelry (and her blog) and I am inspired! So great! I knit one up last night, and I'm not totally in love with the Le Slouch decreases, and have decided to stick with EZ's Tam O'Shanter's decrease instructions.

Hooray Beret!

Also, if you're in the Greater Nashville Area, you may want to check out my friend Ruth's trunk show at Queen Bee this Thursday!

Thursday, December 4, 2008
5:30pm - 8:30pm
Queen Bee
1200 Villa Place STE. 110 Edgehill Village @ Music Row

And now here are some pictures of fiber!

Happy Christmas Knitting!

PS - I'll be back with photos of the poncho my mother requested that I knit her, and pictures of BERETS!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

pressure drop

I love dyeing! I can't stop! I got 2lbs. from Ms. Hello Yarn, 2 pounds from the fiber fest, and I've been going to town ever since. I love it! Oh, and I ordered another pound of BFL yesterday, and more dyes.

This is what I've been up to recently:

I think this one is by far my favorite. I'm calling it "Pleased as Punch"! I dyed 8 oz of it (South African Fine Wool) and kept 4oz for myself. The other half is up on etsy. Part of me doesn't want to part with it, but I need funds to keep this addiction going. South African Fine is really nice! It was really nice to spin up.

Here's some more South African Fine, which you find on my etsy shop:

I've also been spinning what I've been dyeing too. Yeah, all my free time is pretty much consumed with spinning, dyeing and going to Trader Joe's (which just opened up here - I'm completely smitten).

This is some Corriedale I dyed and spun up (the first test run in my new, well, old, Crock Pot):

And here's some hand dyed and spun Shetland which is delightfully soft (and will probably be a Christmas present for my knitter sister-in-law):

Monday, October 20, 2008

Oscar the Yarn

Hello, all!

More spinning up in this piece! Seriously, I'm addicted to novelty yarn. I didn't think I would love knitting with it, but it was a lot of fun! I took the Peas and Carrots and made a GIANT cowl for myself (pictures to follow). It's neat, even if it is the color of dinner's vegetables.

Here's the latest installment of Molly's Wild and Crazy Adventure with novelty yarn:

It's about 37 yards of beehive and coiled goodness! I have another skein of this too, which is very similar (I added some natural romney rolags to the mix). I really don't know what do with it, now that I have made myself the cowl to end all cowls. So, I've taken Rachel (aka Porpoise) and I'm throwing it up (metaphorically, not vomiting) on my new Etsy shop to see what will happen! Go and have a look!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

mellow yellow

Help! I think I'm addicted to spinning beehive yarn! It's so much fun!

I learned how to do these fancy tricks at Yarn School (I even dyed some of this roving there, the more orange stuff was kettle-dyed at last year's Dye Day). My wheel is not loving the new techniques immensely (the orifice is a bit small and the hooks, oh, the hooks). But, no bother. I keep going and making the fun beehives.
I'm pleased as punch with this stuff. I really have no idea, though, what I'm going to make with it. Suggestions appreciated.

Yay, beehives and coils!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Yarn School!

So, I've been meaning to post about Yarn School for some time now, but things got in the way, like illness (stomach virus THEN sinus infection), but I'm back in business now!

Yarn School was absolutely fantastic! I had the best time! Everyone was so lovely and I learned so much. Kansas! The town of Harveyville (pop. 250) was really great and we were treated to the Spookyville parade!

The Harveyville Project, run by Nikol and Ron, is really quite awesome. The school itself was just completely badass and really just amazing. I'm so happy I got to go!

So, the first day we arrived we had a meet and greet. The next day we split up into 2 groups (the Sharks and the Jets - a certifiable knife fight!) and my group went off for dye class; crockpot dyeing, microwave dyeing, handpainting, you name it. It was fantastic.

For lunch, we took a field trip to Wildcat Hollow Alpaca Farm to meet alpacas and buy lots of wonderful alpaca related goodness. I ended up buying some raw alpaca fleece that I ended up washing, carding and spinning (which Deb named Chewpacca, as it really looked like I skinned Chewbacca).

The next day was spent learning spinning techniques, relaxing, carding, etc. It was grand. I had absolutely the best time. I learned such fun things as Navajo plying and spinning novelty yarns, and seriously, I haven't been able to stop since. I'm not kidding. I'm addicted.

I cannot stress how lovely everyone was and how much I learned. The food was absolutely fantastic and I'm already scheming to see how I can go again next year.

I have plenty of more pictures from the event on my Flickr page!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Motor Away

We're having a little problem here in Middle Tennessee with a gasoline shortage, so my trips outside the home this weekend have been severely limited. 50% of the gas stations in Nashville are without gas, and those that do have gasoline have lines down the street. I've always been one to stay out of a panic, so I've been home this weekend knitting THIS:

I love this pattern! I'm using Spun 2 Ways : Socks at Any Size and Any Gauge from Spin-Off magazine! Yes! This is the 391 yards of handspun I successfully spun up! I'm so proud! Thus far, it's smooth sailing. Also, I love this pattern because if you're like me, and your yarn has some unsightly unevenness to it *cough cough*, it magically hides it!

Yarn School is in a couple of days, and I'm so giddy I can't believe it. Seriously. I'm like a little kid.

Monday, September 15, 2008

A Summer Wasting

I'm still alive! I promise! I've been swept up in a world of presidential elections, spinning, knitting, and cleaning my house. Truth be told, I'll be happy if I don't have an aneurysm by the time this election is over.

On a happier note, I'm going to Yarn School in a next week! It starts on my birthday! I'm thrilled!

On the project front, here's something I have been working on for a friend's wedding. It's gotten considerably bigger, but alas, I don't have a more recent picture. It's a log cabin blanket out of Cascade Ecological wool.

I've also been knitting the Morning Surf scarf from SpinOff magazine for my sister's birthday. I just finished it last night, and will be blocking it soon! Obviously, dear reader, her birthday was last week, and in Read It and Wheeze form, I am terribly late.

And hooray me! I successfully spun 391 yds of sock yarn! YES! That will cover my gigantic lady feet! VICTORY! I shall take pictures of that soon!

Friday, July 18, 2008

Who knows where the time goes?

Hello all! I'm back from wedding celebrations and drives across the country! I'm now officially Mrs. Wheezy and all is well! The wedding went off spendidly, and I'm happy to announce that both celebrations in TN and Buffalo are over. HUGE RELIEF. Things on the knitting and spinning front have been relatively quiet as I try to regain some composure to my life. I'm working on some socks for my dad, that were a belated Father's Day present *cough cough* (the man has size 13 feet-- they take a while!).

On the production front, however, I've made some amazing BREAD from a recipe given to me as part of a wedding present from my friends Mark and Amy. It's absolutely stunning bread! All you need is a large dutch oven (5.5 L or bigger) to bake it, and you're good to go!

The dutch oven keeps the bread so nice and moist, and you get to put your choice of flour, whole wheat or corn mean on the outside to give it that nice artisan glow on the outside. Give it a go! You won't be disappointed! Delicious fresh bread without all the crazy preservatives that only costs you about $1! Less than that! Insanity! I actually made bread with my amazing new bread machine this morning for Mr. Wheezy, as per his request (he's getting his wisdom teeth out today), and I have to say, it's not as good as this stuff! No way!

And there are all sorts of ways you can mix it up! Add some beer! And some whole wheat! Go nuts!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Le Wimple

Better late than never for a Mother's Day present, eh? I finally finished weaving in the ends of the wimple I knit up for my mother. It gets cold up there in Buffalo, and she needs something to cover up her ears when she goes out walking! I ran a little bit short on yarn, but no biggie. You can hardly tell, right? Right.

Here are the stats:

Name: Wavy Feathers Wimple

Yarn: vanCalcar Acres Jennifer's FlockSock Sock Yarn

Needle: US 5

Colorway: Leaves of Grass

I received this in a yarn swap from Ravelry and wasn't so sure of the yardage, so with my large feet, I decided to go the route of the wimple instead of being devastated by having too small socks. I'm quite pleased with the results! This was pretty easy knit!

Now I'm off to finish my dad's socks for Father's day and catch up on emails. Ahem.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

A Nice Day for a White Wedding

THE WEDDING IS OVER. I am so happy about this. It was a grand time, but I am utterly exhausted, even after our trip to the mountains. But, dear reader, I am happy to announce that I am done talking about wedding-related activities and can get back to the fun stuff: knitting, spinning, crochet, etc.

That being said, I really didn't get that much knitting done on our trip to Gatlinburg. The view was pretty outstanding, and I managed to get a new digital camera (a Canon Powershot 720 IS). I love the mountains! And, the temperature was at least 15 degrees cooler up there. It was around 95 degrees on the day of our wedding (did I mention that?) Gross.

I'll definitely have more pictures of the wedding on my Flickr in the near future if you'd like to check those out.

And finally, I'll leave you with the best meal we had while in Gatlinburg, at The Trout House:

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Am I the Same Girl? (yes I am)

So, I decided it was time for a new look! I couldn't find a free Blogger template I was happy with, so I sort of came up with one of my own (with the help of and my pretty basic CSS coding skills.

So, let me know what you think! I've always had a soft spot for gingham table cloths!


Sunday, May 25, 2008

Fiber Fests and Wedding Planning

In the midst of getting ready for the wedding which is less than two weeks away (iieeeeeee!) Marissa and I headed down to Dickson, TN for the Middle Tennessee Sheep, Wool and Fiber Festival this past weekend where I spent far too much money and too a much need break from stressing and thinking about where I'm going to seat people at tables. It was a really nice time! 2 buildings filled with local fiber producers

I also entered a skein into the novice skein competition and took top honors! Ok, so there was only one other entry in the novice category, but still, hooray me!

I also bought a lot of fiber. Fancy that. I'm going to give socks another go with some superwash Merino dyed by a lady from my spinning group. Yay! So excited! I so wish I could just spin and not work on wedding stuff. Ugh. Obligations.

So, dear reader, I apologize for the lack of posts. Once this whole wedding ruckus is over and I have more spinning / knitting time, things will be back in action.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

I'm still standin'

Fear not, I'm still alive, dear reader! This whole wedding nonsense is really getting to me! It's less than a month away!

I returned safe and sound from Buffalo from the shower (flew up, drove back with the parents). You'll be happy to know that I finished the dishcloths AHEAD of schedule and here's the final result. They were a complete hit! Coupled with my mom's coasters, it was the craftiest shower I'd ever seen!

I'm fortunate enough to have such lovely friends, and now I'm stocked! 5 air bake cookie sheets! When I opened my red Kitchen Aid Mixer, everyone applauded. It was a delight!

While I'm not a fan of shower "games' my mother, unbeknownst to me, made everyone go around and tell their favorite memory of me. My neighbor, who's known me all my life, said that when I was three, I used to waddle up to her husband in the driveway and offer him a beer. I would also roll up on my tricyle and ask if they had any good cookies. I must have been a charming child.

On the regular knitting front, I can't seem to get anything done, as I'm feeling so spastic with all this wedding planning. I am trying unsuccessfully to knit some socks for my mom for Mother's day, but that is just going horribly wrong, as I seem to be falling asleep on the couch every night.

Oh me.

If I can survive this month, I think I'll be okay. Most of the planning is done, by I fear my sanity may be lost forever.

Monday, April 14, 2008

hello, little garden!

This past weekend was an absolute bust. On my hurried way out the door to the spinning guild meeting I haphazardly put my spinning wheel in the back of Mr. Wheezy-to-Be's van without thoroughly securing it. Well, I made my first turn and I heard a blood-curdling wooden THUNK come from the back. The wheel had fallen over. I pulled over to the nearest parking lot to see what had happened and SOMETHING WAS BROKEN. The dowel pin that holds the mother of all had snapped in two, and by the time I realized this, tears were streaming down my face.

I arrived home, 5 minutes later and proclaimed "I BROKE MY WHEEL!" I ran upstairs to consult the general wisdom of Ravelry, and when I came back downstairs, wiping tears from my eyes, Ben was on the phone with a Kromski dealer in Oregon ordering me a new dowel pin and consulting with them on how to repair the broken part. YAY. BEST FIANCE EVER.

So, I made my way to our neighborhood hardware store (yes! we still have one of those!) to buy some Elmer's wood glue, and to our local health food grocer to buy some sandwiches, I noticed a plant sale! Yes! A local organic farmer had some heirloom seedlings for sale! I discussed with them the fact that I was container gardening, and I had had some pretty big containers (kitty litter containers, etc.).

Now I shall present you with the beginning of the Fresh Step Garden 2008

I'm using some giant kitty litter containers with holes drilled into them, and a big paint mixing bucket from Home Depot, which is an idea I got from the wonderful You Grow Girl.

Let's see, I purchased a bunch of heirloom and organic plants from Eaton's Creek Organics. On the tomato front we have: Mark Twain, Manyel, and Large Red. Peppers representing this year are Giant Marconi and Straddon's Select Pepper. I also picked up some lavender, sweet basil, red basil and thyme from them.

Quite happily, I made my merry way to Gardens of Babylon at the Farmer's Market where I picked up a beautiful spearmint plant, some lettuce and cilantro. I was then off to Home Depot where I rounded off the day with a purchase of an organic strawberry and chamomile plant, along with potting soil and additional pots.

It was a good way to calm myself down after the trauma of breaking your spinning wheel (which is fine, and in working order, by the way). The past few nights, there's been a threat of frost, so these fellas have had to stay indoors, but tomorrow night after work, they will receive proper homes!

Friday, April 11, 2008

keep on knitting in the free world

The Yarn Harlot's visit to Nashville was most excellent! I was able to pick up her new book, "Things I Learned from Knitting... whether I wanted to or not" and got it autographed. There was a good turnout, and it was fun to be surrounded by that many knitters all at once. I must say, the Harlot is the Queen of the Deadpan and the Mistress of the Dry Wit. There is no one to equal her is humor. I had a blast. Unfortunately, I forgot to bring my somewhat reliable digital camera was left with my somewhat tolerable camera phone.

When I got my book signed, I brought up the fact that I understood cold (something she mentioned in the Q&A section of the evening - that Southerners just don't understand what it's like) as I'm from Buffalo. I didn't mention our respective hockey teams, (Sabres v. Leafs) as that is a conversation that may have ended in fisticuffs. We're two ladies, after all, even though there is a deep and vast rivalry between the Niagara Peninsula that can never be amended, I'm afraid. I was tempted to bring it up, though, especially because neither of our teams made the playoffs.

Update on the Nutkins: I think my gauge is whack. I think I knit too tightly! After looking at Melissa's amazingly blue Nutkin socks, I think I'm an extremely tight knitter, especially when it comes to pattern knitting. When it's an easy peasy vanilla sock pattern, who cares? Tight is fine. But patterns, oh boy! No wonder the blasted thing doesn't fit!

I found a sock I was knitting for Mr. Wheezy-in-87-days (oh my!), and I got a chunk of it done while listening to the Harlot. I finished it last night, and got another big chunk of it done today while they had us in the basement of the library during a tornado warning. Thank god I never go anywhere without my knitting. It's just like what the Harlot said, and I'm paraphrasing here: Knitters are not patient. We look it, but take our knitting needles away from us, and we'd commit petty crimes.

That's how I felt today. I would have started screaming at students who took up multiple seats while 80 y/o professor emeritus had to sit on the floor (someone else gave them a talking to, don't worry).

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Most excellent!

The Middle Tennessee Sheep, Wool and Fiber Festival has been announced!

Unfortunately, it's right before the wedding, but I will taking some "sanity time" and head on out there. It's about an hour outside of Nashville, and will need to spend some time with sheep and spinning wheels.

And tonight, I have a date with The Yarn Harlot at a Borders out in Brentwood, TN! Let's hope it's not too bonkers and I can get in the door (this is a notoriously small Borders).

Saturday, April 05, 2008

I can't stay away from cotton

In taking a break from the last few dishcloths, and planning my container garden, I came across this pattern on You Grow Girl. The pattern was a little trying for a novice crocheter like myself, but after a second go-round, I manage to come up with some pleasing results! My friend Karen requested I make one for her when I see her at the end of the month for the wedding shower!

Speaking of wedding showers, my hostess gifts arrived from the lovely Melissa of Bridgman Pottery, and they're more lovely than I could have ever imagined, so get over there and shop already!

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Threadfest, or, 35 Feet High and Rising

Finally, I got around to taking some pictures of my loot from Threadfest! Vintage patterns galore! And all of these treasures were mine for under five dollars!

My goal is to make as much as I possibly can. While I can't imagine I'll be knitting and Coco Chanel-esque dress suits anytime soon, there are plenty of great patterns that provide great inspiration. There are some great patchwork crocheted scarves, amazing parkas, you name it! I am so excited at all the possibilities!

On the dishcloth front, which seems to be occupying a huge part of my life, I can safely say THE END IS IN SIGHT. Sure, I have about 5 more to do, and I still have to weave in all those godforsaken ends, but I plan to be done by this weekend. I fear for my sanity. I only had 35 done, with one more about to be finished.

And with that, I'll leave you with a picture of The Leaning Tower of Dishcloths:

Thursday, March 27, 2008


The lovely Melissa of Bridgman Pottery tagged me with a 7 random creative things meme of things I probably haven't talked about before, so here we go!

1- I knit. A lot. I once knit my friend Andrew a ZoSo scarf on a dare. He would taunt me with pictures of Jimmy Page's handknit ZoSo sweater during boring library school classes, so eventually, I gave in when I moved down to Nashville. It didn't take me too long, which was surprising, because the thing was MASSIVE. I guess you can get a lot done when you move to a new city and have no friends. Sad!

2- I used to have a radio show here in Nashville for about 2 years. It was called Karaoke Blackout. It was a lot of fun, but with wedding planning and work, it was just too much.

Here's the playlist from my last show:
bob marley and the wailers - i'm dreaming of a white christmas - destiny : rare ska sides from studio one
the left banke - i've got something on my mind - walk away renee / pretty ballerina smash records
neil young and crazy horse - everybody knows this is nowhere- everybody knows this is nowhere
petula clark - i wanna see morning with him - memphis
annette poindexter and the pieces of peace - mama - eccentric soul, v. 2 : twinight's lunar rotation
tanya tucker - delta dawn - delta dawn
the pastels - nothing to be done - sittin' pretty
maxine brown - whatever happened to our love? - one kiss can lead to another
low - just like christmas - christmas
george jones - treasure of love - the definitive collection, 1955-1962
the clean - billy two - anthology
joe tex - show me - greatest hits!!!
the essex green - mrs. bean - everything is green
the fall - stepping out - psykick dancehall
p.p. arnold - the first cut is the deepest - one kiss can lead to another
loretta lynn - your squaw is on the warpath - loretta lynn writes'em and sings'em
desmond dekker - this woman - the definitive collection
donovan - epistle to dippy - the essential donovan
the monochrome set - eine symphone des grauens - compendium
the shangri-las - give him a great big kiss - the very best of the shangri-las
bob dylan w/ johnny cash - girl from the north country - nashville skyline
harry nilsson- gotta get up - nilsson schmilsson
bob wills - buffalo twist -1000 greatest country hits
dusty springfield - bring him back - love songs
sloan -she says what she means - navy blues
the visitors - bliss - miss
desperate bicycles - smokescreen - desperate bicycles anthology
glenda collins - if you gotta pick a baby - this little girl's gone rockin'
tammy wynette - your good girl's gonna go bad - your good girl's gonna go bad
the maytals - monkey girl - the king kong compilation
the nashville ramblers - the trains - children of nuggets rhino Rock
the jam - that's entertainment - greatest hits
emmylou harris - bluebird wine - pieces of the sky
charlie rich - you can have her - the complete smash session
television personalities - this angry silence - and don't the kids just love it
tommy roe - sweet pea - greatest hits
tina turner - river deep, mountain high - tina turner : the collected recordings
phyllis dillon - perfidia trojan - reggae sisters
josephine foster and the supposed - all the leaves are gone - all the leaves are gone
the pale fountains - thank you - longshot for your love

3- I knit a curtain for the kitchen of our new place! Every time I do the washing up, I get to admire my handiwork!

4- Handspun yarn, and yarn dyed with marigolds! (the yellow yarn, obv.). The first two skeins on the left are some of my first attempts at spinning on my then new wheel. The yellow yarn was my first attempt at dyeing with natural dyes. It was spun by Beth of 3 Creeks Farm who hosted the Dye Day for our spinning group and sold me my wheel. I also dyed the purple yarn with some jacquard dyes at home.

5- The Papi Chullo I knit for my dad for snowblowing the driving in Buffalo! This was Christmas knitting for 2007. It's 100% alpaca, and oh so luxurious and warm.

6- I had a piece in an art zine called Swelt (we had a gallery opening and everything!). Alas, I have no more of my catalog card illustrations (I am a librarian, after all). I'll leave you with this:

7- And the last, let's see: I'm debating between socks and pies. I do make a lot of both, so I guess I leave you with a picture of each.

A lovely berry pie:

And the Waving Ripple socks I knit for my mother:

I guess I'm supposed to tag some more folks now. When I was tagged, I thought it was so sweet, but I hope it doesn't feel like receiving chain mail! So, Denyse, Marissa, and Hazel Evelyn, whaddya think?

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

i dream of a team of altidores

After a long weekend of entertaining a contingent of New Yorkers in town for the US U-23 Olympic Qualifiers, which I am happy to announce, that the US is a part of (for soccer), not much knitting and/or crafting got done. I was planning on knitting some socks during the tailgaiting portion of Sunday's events, but I was too busy eating ribs and making merry before the horrendously boring loss to Honduras. Also, we made pork pies. From scratch. Yeah, they took forever. We made homemade aspic and everything! Intense!

Well, things have since calmed down, and I'm making progress on the Nutkin socks, but I'm sad to announce that there is no way in Hades that they'll fit my US ladies size 11 (might I add painfully flat) feet. My sister has much smaller feet. Perhaps she will like them.

I noticed mention of this on Ravelry, and Mr. Wheezy-to-be brought me a print copy of this article today. Threadfest!

You'll find literally thousands of yards of trim, fabric and yarn, as well as quilt scraps, partially finished projects, crochet hooks and whatever other notions people in the community have donated.


Now, do I take an extended lunch on Friday on take Mr. Wheezy with me on Saturday afternoon? Oh, decisions!?

While I know I have no photos updating my progress, I do have video footage of my existence! Here are some highlight from the first game against Canada on Thursday night (I was helping to hold up the giant flag at around 2:35 - 2:38 in - NB my love hand knit bamboo scarf courtesy of my friend Kerry):

Friday, March 14, 2008

stress knitting

A year ago, when I first endeavored into the wild and crazy world of sock knitting, I never would have guessed that it would now be known as my comfort knitting. Last night, while watching the US men's under 23 soccer team team play, and I tried to sort out who to invite to the rehearsal dinner while I emailed the wedding photographer, in between crocheting those freaking wedding shower dishcloths, I looked longingly at Nancy Bush's Knitting on the road : sock patterns for the traveling knitter as it sat sadly on my shelf. So, what did i do? i stayed up, with my frazzled nerves and attempted to knit the sock that looked like a whiskey cask until midnight. Well, gentle reader, it didn't. The vikkel braid is not to be trifled with past a certain hour in the evening, I'm afraid.

I did, however, through the glory of ravelry and its free pattern browse, find the Nutkin Sock and shall start on that this weekend. Even though my sage coworkers are advising me to keep on keepin' on with the dishcloths, they do not understand the soul-crushing power that working with that much cotton can bring. Also, there's some sort of peace and solace that concentrating on starting of on that first sock brings, before you get the pattern down. It's just really nice and calming, and just what this over-stressed, planned-to-the-max lady needs!

This + a cup of tea = heaven, this weekend

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

captain easychord

spring has finally hit tennessee! i think! today was absolutely gorgeous! growing up in the snow belt, spring was such a rewarding season after 5 or 6 months of grueling cold and soul-crushing snow. since the album came out, i like to celebrate the change of seasons by putting on stereolab's sound-dust and celebrating the lovely change of weather. this is a quintessential spring album for me. it's funny how some songs or albums are tied so strongly to parts of our memory, like the time i was driving home from class during a blizzard and leonard cohen's "avalanche" from "songs from a room" just happened to be playing. i can't listen to that album during the summer, but i digress. anyway, i have fond memories of having the windows down on my car, listening to this stereolab album, driving to my job at the archives and saying hello to the niagara river and lake erie on fine may mornings (when spring usually hit in the homeland). definite plus of living in the south: having spring 2 months early!

i had to get away from the dishcloths! i am happy to report i am up to 30! yes! only 10 (or so) to go! so, i spun this past weekend with the roving i picked up from etsy. behold!

It's about 208 yards and a merino colonial blend! Oh so soft and squishy! I love it! I have absolutely no idea what I'll do with it, but I'll sure it'll come to me. Eventually.

It was so nice to spin again and get away from cotton. Don't get me wrong. I love me some cotton, but everything in moderation, including moderation.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Golden Hands are the Devil's Playthings

After finding out from the lovely Marissa and Denyse about the sheer and vast publication glory that is Golden Hands, I spent the last of my money that was in my Paypal account and purchased this:

I think I might be addicted! I haven't done cross-stitch since I was 9, but that shouldn't stop me, right?

Monday, March 03, 2008

The Decline of Country and Western Civilization

This past weekend, my folks came down to visit and I am happy to say dishcloth creation was put on hold while wedding planning took over. We also went to the Grand Ole Opry at the Ryman Auditorium downtown, which was great, but I digress. When we weren't running around tasting cupcakes or discussing red Gerbera daisies, we thrift stored (hello, DIY center pieces) and hit Nashville's finest used bookstores. I scored bigtime!

I found this one book from 1973 called "Sew Exciting! Sew Simple!" that is right out of that era's vein of feminism that is sort of self-aware and apologetic, and is sort of like, "It's okay to want to sew your husband a terrycloth bathrobe! Women have been doing it for ages!" It's kind of hilarious. I will treasure it forever.

The other, "The Color Book of Embroidery" is sort of a hippy dippy 70s acid trip through embroidery. It does have a primer on smocking (yay!), but some of the projects are downright frightening (think weird elves) and there are creepy baby blankets that are kind of hilarious. This book was a whopping $2.00. The other was 25 cents. Yes. 25 cents. I picked up another for 2 bucks that is aptly titled and "Encyclopedia of Needlework" which I reckon will come in handy (no pun intended).

The peach colored pillowcases in the background were a gift from my aunt. The beautiful crocheted ends! The other was found thrifting this weekend for 69 cents. I intend to make and apron out of it.

Now this book is a certifiable doozy. It's called "Golden Hands : a comprehensive guides to knitting, dressmaking & needlecraft." Oh, the Kaftans! The owls! It has some utterly amazing things. While looking at some Russian Orthodox-esque tapestry designs in this book, my father told me a story of how he loved the movie"Dr. Zhivago" so much (who can blame him?) that he asked my grandmother to make him a tunic shirt much like Omar Shariff's shirt in the movie. Yeah, she did. WITH EMBROIDERY.

That, ladies and gentleman, is what's in my gene pool. I've just got to tap into that well some more.

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