Sunday, September 30, 2007

Nuit blanche

Toronto is sleeping in this morning after staying up all night. Nuit Blanche was in full effect last night and I spent the evening in Zone C soakin' up the culture on Queen West. I'm sure there will be many Nuit Blanche reports in blogland, so I'll keep it brief. My favourite exhibit?




Femmebomb
by Janet Morton. The same artist that brought us the knit house cozy, gussied up the Beatrice Lillie Health Centre with an explosion of pink, red and orange. She crocheted over 200 flowers for the piece:





Fibre, flowers, feminism - what's not to love?My second favourite?




Abomasum by Rachel E McRae
. A semi-hollow chocolate stag at the gates of Trinity Bellwoods park. I only wish I had been around at 2am when everyone got to eat it! In a perfect world, all art would be either fibre or chocolate-related. Speaking of fibre...



My week hasn't been completely devoid of knitting. I think I've finally got the knack of cabling without a cable needle:



I'm constantly thrilled to see the twists and turns seem to magically grow from my needles. This cable business might become habit forming!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Le re-run

Look Familiar?



"With all of this secret baby knitting going on, I thought I would finally post some pictures of my re-worked Phildar Swing Jacket. If you recall, I wasn't happy with the fit. I removed the collar and re-attached it, then moved the buttons to prevent dreaded "boob gape-age". (I'd still like to find bigger buttons, but that can wait.) Overall? A better fit! (I bet hardly anyone notices but me, but I really think it's much better!)

As nice as it is to have a live-in assistant to help you take your blog photos, the situation is not without it's problems. The issue with being a foot shorter than your photographer? Aerial perspective! See how my boobs look like an big shelf and my legs look like twigs in the photo above? My (crap) self-timer photo gives you a better idea of what my proportions are supposed to look like:



Look! Legs! Despite better proportions, I obviously needed a little assistance to get good shot. After a little coaching things he got better:





He even captured a little classic hair-toss action:



With a little practice, we'll get this photo-shoot thing in the bag. In the meantime, I'll try to work on something other than secret knitting to give you folks some bloggy goodness!

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Welcome to Jerkville, Population: Me

A few days ago I arrived home from work to discover a UPS delivery notice on my door. This was odd for two reasons. A) I didn't recall purchasing anything in the recent past and B)It said "second delivery attempt" when I never received a "first delivery attempt". Despite being no where near Christmas or my birthday, I grilled my boyfriend for answers; "Are you sure you didn't buy me a present on eBay?" Sadly, I could tell he was telling the truth when he said no.

After calling UPS to get them to deliver it to my neighbour instead of continuing to leave sticky notes on my door, the mystery was finally solved:



OMIGODOMIGODOMIGODOMIGODOMIGOD!!!!!



Total euphoria followed by nagging guilt. After all that whinging about the gift certificate from Twinkle, she goes and sends me a sweaters worth of yarn!!! Not only that, but in a colour I love!



Twinkle's Soft Chunky in Peacock Blue. It's soft and squishy and fluffy and iloveitiloveitiloveit!



Now I feel like a big fat jerk for being so ungrateful. It makes me wonder though; was this yarn sent to me because of the blog post? Is Wenlan Chia reading this right now? Gaaah! It's not like I'm not aware that this blog is on the Internet and accessible by anyone with a computer, but... really? Don't successful fashion designers have too much on their plates to be reading my humble blog? The thought has me thrilled and terrified at the same time.

My most sincere apologies go out to Twinkle. I'm an ungrateful bastard that doesn't deserve your yarn! (But I'm still keeping it, K?)

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Thriftin' the night away

I am in the midst of some serious baby knitting. Unfortunately, this is secret baby knitting (the knitting is secret, not the baby). At the risk of spoiling the surprise should the mother-to-be stop by casa de Knitteroo (Hi Gabby!), all I can show you is this:



If you're dying to see what I'm up to and you're on Ravelry, by all means look it up.

In the meantime, more thrift scores!



I think this magazine is my best score to date. A 1958 Vogue Knitting? How awesome is that? The original receipt was still inside:



Knit swimsuits anyone?



Tee-hee!:



Why do I read this as "Very young, very gay clothes"? Hmm, maybe because of this:



Tell me those poor young man's knit trousers aren't "very gay".

In all seriousness though, there are some very beautiful designs in the magazine. Unfortunately most of them are all knit in tiny gauges that would make me want to pull my hair out. There are exceptions and I'm quite smitten with this one:



It's knit five stitches to the inch in garter stitch - totally doable. Vintage sizing however? Wacko. I would have to knit the largest pattern size, when I usually knit the smallest size given. Oh, how times (and waistlines) have changed.

I also found a 1991 issue of Vogue Knitting, but somehow between flipping through it last night and sitting down to write this post... it totally vanished. Sucked into the black hole of mystery with all of those stitch markers and odd socks. You really don't need to see the patterns in there anyway. A lot of hideous, over-sized, multi coloured monstrosities. Well, except this:



See the little picture in the corner? That's from the issue I found. As a lot of you know, the latest Vogue knitting re-worked a lot of their past patterns for the 25th Anniversary Issue (I know, how can I have a 1958 magazine if it's only the 25th anniversary? It's a long story). Now I have the '91 and the '07 version. Although I really like it, given the complexity and size of the sweater it doesn't really matter because I'm probably not going to knit either of them!

Just out of curiosity; are you all sick of seeing the junk I pick up at thrift stores and garage sales? I obviously do this a lot and I'm not sure that everyone finds it as fascinating as I do. Let me know!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Fall Cable Knit-A-Long


Baaah!

Once again, I am a sheep, following other knitters down the same path. I joined another knit-a-long! I happened across the Fall Cable KAL somewhere in my interweb travels and thought, why not? I'm already knitting something with cables anyhooz!
Stop by the blog to see my first entry. While your there - sign up! Don't forget to snag a button (designed by yours truly).

Monday, September 10, 2007

Mmm...farm smell

My memory is shorter than Verne Troyer. It wasn't so surprising then, when I got a phone call Sunday afternoon from Laura asking "So..., are you coming?". The Dye class! (I signed up for one of Lettuce Knit's new Dye workshops a few weeks ago.) But wasn't that next Sunday? Just that very morning I had meant to double-check...

Lucky for me, I live around the corner from the yarn store. I changed into a doesn't-matter-if-I-get-dye-on-it shirt, grabbed a bag of yarn and flew out the door.

A few hours later I had turned this:



Into this:



Turns out dying is a snap! Sure there's some math and the lovely "farm" smell that comes from hot, wet wool, but overall? Snappy! In fact, pretty hard to mess up. My yarn isn't exactly the shade I was going for, but I still like it a lot.



The best part is, I now know how to over-dye it if I decide I want to change it. I think I might pick up a few pots of dye from G&S and give it a go at home sometime. Think of the makeover I could give some of my stash yarn! Wheee! New hobby alert!

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Luck of the somewhat Irish

I tell people I'm half English, half Irish, though the Irish portion is debatable. Despite having relatives with names like Margaret, Irene and Theresa, the reality is, that side of the family goes back many generations in Canada. The fiddle-dee-dee factor has surely been diluted. The luck, however seems to be going strong. At least when it comes to knitting.

I am the August winner of the knitting contest from Twinkle's Big City Knits. For those who aren't aware, if you've knit something from that book, you can submit a photo of your FO for the chance to win a prize. I submitted my biker vest and I won! Awesome right? Well, sort of.



The prize is a $20 gift certificate for Twinkle Living. Though I love the Twinkle line, it's a little on the high-end side of the pocketbook. The least expensive item is, of all things, a knitted ipod warmer for $55! Great! My prize is the opportunity to spend $30 or more for something I had no intention of buying in the first place!

I hate to sound ungrateful, but c'mon! Wouldn't a skein from her yarn line be more appropriate? I think my prize shall lay unclaimed. I will instead choose to bask in the glory of being a "winner".

And that's where my luck runs out. I was click-clacking along on my Clapotis, when I realized I had made some kind of mistake. (I blame my new found obsession with attempting to read and knit at the same time. Like shampoo/conditioner combos, I end up doing both jobs sub-par) I had high hopes for this Clapotis. I was going to conquer it snafu free! I am currently tinking back rows and scratching my head. I know I'll eventually figure it out, but I prefer to knit forwards rather than backwards. Is this my punishment for looking a gift-certificate in the mouth?

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Goodbye summer, Hello Sweaters

Nooooh!



My flowers have shriveled. The Ex has come and gone. The film festival is around the corner and I have a nagging compulsion to buy a new three ring binder. Yup, it's autumn in Toronto.

While it still feels like summer, at least weather-wise, I am beyond excited about what cooler weather means for my knitting. I need sweaters! Scarves! Hats! And then there's x-mas knitting. Gaaah! I am constantly fighting the urge to cast on a million different projects. So far, it's just the one newbie:



The aformentioned Clapotis. I believe this marks the first time I am knitting the same pattern twice. It's kind of nice. Like finding a good movie on tv that you've seen before, but so long ago it seems all shiny and new again. I do however recall thinking if I ever knit another Clap, I would change the kfb stitches to purls. Why is it I can barely remember what I had for breakfast, but I remember this pattern detail from something I knit a year ago? Selective memory indeed.

The Clap was not to be casteth on until I finished my baby sweater, so here she be:



I did not enjoy knitting this. I did not enjoy the finishing of this. After blocking and sewing on some buttons? I love it! Sure it's got a few flaws, but enh? Only a knitter would know. Check the cute buttons!:



And just in time for back to school, I bring you the apple cozy:



Inspired by Cara, and knit for Cathy.