Saturday, August 25, 2007

Almost back from the beach

Hi all! Sorry for the lack of posting as of late. Well, some what sorry. I haven't been posting because I've been holed up at the cabin for the last 8 days with limited internet access. I've only had quick internet jaunts while zipping in to the university to collect computer output and run new programs (the joys of being a research assistant, lol). I'm still not officially back home until tomorrow evening so news of my latest project will have to wait. Actually, it'll have to wait a few days more than that because it's top secret. In my beach isolation I have done massive amounts of knitting trying to finish this huge project before school starts next week and things are looking hopeful. Cross your fingers for me! I won't say what it is but will reveal that it's made in the colour of this yarn (though this isn't the exact yarn I'm using):
Mmmm... turquoise. My favourite of all the colours which I unfortunately own next to nothing in. I'll have to work at changing that.
Last weekend I also had a great knitting diversion. There was a big Knit Out at The Forks and knitters from all across the city came out to knit on the grass near the river. I was knitting my Jaywalkers which were a big hit with everyone coming to see the yarn. I'm so close to being done them, I can't wait to get them on my feet. And I have to admit, as amusing as we were to all the passerbyers, they were a hundred times more amusing to us. Watching them walk down the steps, notice us, stop dead in their tracks and and excitedly pointing at us was priceless. I really felt like I was part of some sort of exhibition. It was a nice day and a great time meeting other knitters in the city.
And for the Secret Pal 11 contest, here are my answers:

1. What is the one knitting accessory you could not live without?
Crochet hook to fix those mistakes I always notice 6 rows too late.
2. If you're heading on vacation, do you take knitting with you? If so, how much and what type of project?
Absolutely. The last trip I had three bags full of knitting but that isn't typical. I'd say two pairs of socks and one bigger project.
3. Where have you travelled to that you'd consider your favorite spot?
The theatre off the side of the mountain at the Oracle in Delphi in Greece.
4. What is your favorite knitting book at the moment? Do you own it?
I am currently in love with Favourite Socks from Interweave Knits and have many of the patterns queued up for knitting onceI clear some needles.
5. Do you listen to podcasts? Which is your favorite(s)?
Knitters Uncensored, Cast On, Stash and Burn, Lime & Violet
6. If you could only knit with 1 color for the rest of your life, what color would that be?
7. If you were far into a project and then noticed a mistake near the beginning what would you do?
Try to fix it by dropping back stitches (and I am pretty willing to do massive knit backwards surgery), if that won't work if I can live with it and it won't severely alter the outcome I would leave it. if the mistake is hideous and completely throws off the rest of the pattern I would rip.
8. Where is the most unsual spot you've ever knit?
I don't think I've ever knit anywhere that you would classify as unusual per say. Though the place I got the most reaction was knitting a sock while standing up in line at the Smoothie place.

Sorry for the lack of knitting to show you but I'll have my camera back and access to the computer starting tomorrow and I plan to get in as much knitting as I can before school starts again and I give my soul back over to the university. Hope there's sunshine where you are!

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Fell off the sock wagon

Okay, I admit it, I'm bad. I fell off the sock wagon. After I was so good knitting only on the baby blanket last week, I cracked. The Rocker Girl yarn was too much. It's "Knit Me Right This Instance" vibes were way too much for me to handle. The yarn practically put itself on my needles and I couldn't help but knit it once it was already on the needles now could I? So that's what happens, a small lapse in attention and three days later you have this:
Rockin' Jay #1
I must admire at how quickly it knit up. And it fits much better than the last attempt at Jaywalkers that went horribly wrong. This yarn has much more give and stretch to it. While there's a bit of resistance getting it on at the heel, it is not a full on struggle and I am happy. Actually, these are probably the best fit socks I have ever made for myself. Ofcourse this now mean s I'll never get back to the baby blanket until I make the second sock. The yarn is too pretty, too demanding of my time. It needs to be appeased. This will absolutely be my favourite pair of socks I've ever made.
There's also been some stash enhancing going on around here. While I won't admit to all of it I do absolutely have to show you my Yartini that I finally scored from the Loopy Ewe after months and months of trying to get some. And the colours are absolutely everything I have always wanted and expected. Pardon me while I drool a bit:
Cosmopolitan Colourway (above)
Sangria Colourway (below)
And just because I am in the mood to oggle all the pretty sock yarn there is out there I also have a new find: The Knittery, Petals colourway. This yarn is so luscious. The colour has oh so subtle variation in such a gorgeous sheen. The softest yarn I've ever had. Prepare yourself for the photo, though nothing compares to seeing it up close. I only dream of when I find the perfect pattern to knit this yarn with because it won't be used for anything other than the absolute best:
I also thought that I'd mention a great relatively new podcast out there called Knitters Uncensored that I've just listened to all 6 episodes of. Sometimes podcasts start out pretty shaky but I love this one from the first episode. It's hosted by three ex-pats living in Germany, only one of whom speaks German. They talk about yarn, knitterly ideas, German knitting terminology and about getting used to live in the new country. The episodes are on the long side now but I don't mind because they are so well done. I definitely recommend anyone who listens to podcasts check it out.
And before I get sucked back into the next Jaywalker I have two quick shout outs. I can finally announce who my wonderful downstream Sockapalooza4 Pal is: Susan! I got word today (well, you can check it out in last entry's comments) that she has received and opened my package and loves the socks. *Phew* I tried very hard and I'm glad those socks found a great and loving home. I also have word that her various other house mates love their giftees too. I found one really cute book for her son. It's a Canadian alphabet book. Z is for Zamboni :) I loved it.
Also a quick hi to my Secret Pal if you happen to be lurking around the blog *waves*.
That's about it. Blogging might be limited last week as I'm staying out at the beach. Have a good week of knitting all!

Thursday, August 9, 2007

What's this?

Okay, let's do a post office recap:
Thursday (the 2nd): I mail my Sockapalooza Package at the post office
Friday: I get "Last Minute Knitted Gifts" in the mail. Accepted by my mother at the house.
Monday: Stat Holiday, no mail.
Tuesday: "Wendy Knits" arrives in the mail and I got to the post office
Wednesday: My Rocker Girl sock yarn arrives in the mail, I go to the post office and nearly murder the cashier.
Thursday (today): Package delivery notice comes in the mail. I make my now habitual trip to the post office expecting my Loopy Ewe order. The lady pulls out a square parcel wrapped in brown paper. I think to myself that it's very odd that they'd ship the yarn like that. Then I look at the return address. Quebec?!?! This can't be my package so I check the name it's being sent to. Yep, there's my name. Then it suddenly clicks... MY SOCKAPALOOZA SOCKS ARRIVED!!!!!!
I raced to the car to open the package. First I resisted all temptation and opened the card. My socks were made for me by a wonderful woman named Frieda who happens to live in Quebec, my most favouritest of places. I couldn't have gotten a more wonderful sock pal if I tried! At the top of the package were these wonderful "extras":
Notice the Fleece Artist Sea Wool? I adore this yarn. And in such a pretty pink colour. It's not entirely solid but has ever so subtle different shades of pink. The nicest part of the yarn? She wound it into a ball for me :) Thank you!!!!! You do not want to see my current method for winding yarn by hand by myself!
Then, what I've been waiting for all this time, THE socks:
They were made out of Opal sock yarn in the neon colourway. And I found it all too perfect that she picked a pattern for me with the name "Math Whiz" :) Someone clearly knows what will get me giddy, lol. They fit me absolutely perfectly which is amazing because my feet are pretty square and the toes are almost always too tight but not these! I totally *heart* them. I wish so much that it wasn't so hot outside and so completely impractical to be wearing socks. The first cold rainy day we have (and with the good weather we've been having, one can't be far away) these are hopping right onto my feet.
Thank you so much Frieda!!! I love them!!!!
(Now let's just see if my Loopy Ewe order comes in tomorrow warranting another trip to the post office this week...)


Oom-pa-pa, oom-pa-pa! Holy polkas Batman! Sorry for the lack of postings but for the past four nights and for the next three I've been playing at the German Pavilion in Folklorama with the German Club Band. For non-locals it's a huge festival every year where dozens of different cultural groups around the city host shows displaying their culture, serve their traditional food and wear the traditional dress. Like this:
Jane & Me Drindl 2
Drindl Back
Though I must tell you that those photos aren't from this year's Folklorama. My drindl was heart breakingly taken back by the lady who gave them to my friend who in turn let me have one. So I am currently drindl-less :( So if anyone happens to know where I can get a nice drindl without paying 100s of dollars...
But it's been tons of fun. And I've gotten some knitting done between the shows. I am currently working strictly on the cabled baby blanket until it finished. I'm over half done though so that's encouraging. However, it doesn't exactly make for interesting blog posts to see it just get a bit bigger each day. So I'll have to satisfy you with some yarn porn:
Rocker Girl
This would be the skein I just acquired of Skinny Duets in the "Rocker Girl" colourway. And I have to tell you. I am in love. And all because of this yarn it is killing me to only work on that blanket. Forever I've been thinking how I wanted yarn in black, hot pink and white and searching and searching. Then this gets updated to the dyers homepage last week. And while I wasn't a fan of the yarn base of the regular Duets Yarn (DK weight), the yarn base for the skinny yarn (fingering weight) is so soft and smooshy. *swoons* I highly suggest people head over to A Swell Yarn Shop and look at her yarn. The shipping was very fast. It took just a week and it's coming from the States to Canada so that's a good deal.
Speaking of parcels, I've been to the post office last Thursday, Tuesday, Wednesday, & Today. A package also came on Friday but someone was home to accept it. I've been getting tons of mail. Some books from Chapters and two yarn orders. And I must tell you, I'm not all too pleased with some of the employees. The other day there was three people plus a lady already being served in front of me. two people were working. It took them 20 minutes before they served me. Argh! hopefully for putting up with that my Sockapalooza Socks will arrive to their recipient post haste (package tracking says they atleast arrived to the destination country, and they used that terminology too). So hooray!
Wish me luck at the show tonight and I'll show you the Yarntini that I'm off to the post office to pick up later :)

Monday, August 6, 2007

SP11 Questionnaire

1. What is/are your favorite yarn/s to knit with?
Debbie Bliss, Rowan, Claudia Handpainted
What fibers do you absolutely *not* like?
acrylic, fun fur, really tweedy yarn
2. What do you use to store your needles/hooks in?
A really bad system. An old sour cream container that's too smal and constantly gets knocked over. And my floor ;)
3. How long have you been knitting & how did you learn?
Just over a year
Would you consider your skill level to be beginner, intermediate or advanced?
4. Do you have an Amazon or other online wish list?
5. What's your favorite scent?
Vanilla, lavender
6. Do you have a sweet tooth? Favorite candy?
Absolutely!!! Milk chocolate, fuzzy peaches, jelly beans, sour soothers, cherry blasters, jolly ranchers, clod hoppers, lollipops, I could really go on for a long time :)
7. What other crafts or Do-It-Yourself things do you like to do?
Crochet, cross stitch, just started to teach myself to sew
Do you spin?
8. What kind of music do you like? Can your computer/stereo play MP3s? (if your buddy wants to make you a CD)
I have very eclectic tastes and will listen to almost anything that isn't heavy metal. Though I am extra partial to jazz, musical theatre and lounge music.
9. What's your favorite color(s)?
Pink, blues, turquoise, black
Any colors you just can't stand?
Orange, bright green, brown, bright yellow
10. What is your family situation?
I live at home with my parents, and I'm an only child.
Do you have any pets?
Two cats, Misty & Mittens.
11. Do you wear scarves, hats, mittens or ponchos?
Considering that winters in my city can go past -40 and winters drag on from about November to mid-April, I get tons of use out of scarves, hats of the toque variety and mittens. You wouldn't however catch me dead in a poncho.
12. What is/are your favorite item/s to knit?
Socks, baby items, lace
13. What are you knitting right now?
4/5 pairs of socks, two baby blankets, two lace shawls and pretending to still be actively knitting a sweater
14. Do you like to receive handmade gifts?
I love it
15. Do you prefer straight or circular needles?
Straight, though if I could afford to stock my set with Addis I would probably switch to circs
Bamboo, aluminum, plastic?
16. Do you own a yarn winder and/or swift?
No, but sure wish I did.
17. How old is your oldest UFO?
However long ago I cast on that sweater, so since December maybe?
18. What is your favorite holiday?
Whacking Day!!!! (my birthday happens to fall on the famed Simpsons holiday). But other than that, Christmas.
19. Is there anything that you collect?
Flutes/recorders, cat figurines, Le Petit Prince in foreign languages, yarn :)
20. Any books, yarns, needles or patterns out there you are dying to get your hands on?
I am just itching to try some Yarn Pirate sock yarn and Socks That Rock sock yarn. I also need a stitch dictionary
What knitting magazine subscriptions do you have?
21. Are there any new techniques you'd like to learn?
Next on my list is intarsia or fair isle knitting
22. Are you a sock knitter?
Obsessively so!
What are your foot measurements?
9 inches from heel to toe, 8.5 around. Size 8 shows.
23. When is your birthday?
May 10th, 1985
24. Are you on Ravelry? If so, what's your ID?
Yes. ID is mathgirl