Tuesday, May 29, 2007

I *heart* FO's

"Technicolar Heart" by Jim Dine.

When it was announced that the giant blue heart covered with tools and dismembered hands and feet was purchased as a permanent addition to the WSU campus, it led to a lively debate about the nature of art a publicized snit between the art department and the student body.

Summation of Student Argument: “It’s big, ugly, and weird. It obviously cost lots of money. And it’s prominently located in the middle of campus where visitors notice it and enquire. We hate it.” (a versatile argument which the student body could also apply to some large sports programs)

Art professor counter-argument: Ha! We finely got your attention. Yes, it is provocative. That’s what art is about! (a definition of art that could easily lead one to categorize Donald Trump as such)

Logic, why don’t they teach logic at these schools.

In the spirit of educated discourse, the students have hacked the heart by listing it on ebay and wrapping it up as “trash.” Say what you will, they’re getting their money’s worth.

But we went to the heart of campus (ahem) because it seemed the perfect backdrop for an overdue FO photo shoot. This is my glamorous little sister posing with her hand knit arm warmers.

Project Specifications:

Yarn – Avanti 100% merino super wash DK sock yarn in colour 12, lot 4205. Held double. This colorway will always make me think of pirates – aqua blue, black, bright yellow, red and tropical water green… perhaps in part because I knit most of the second wrist warmer while chaperoning the anime club’s viewing of Baron Omatsuri and the Secret Island. Colors personally selected by aforementioned gift recipient.

Needles – Size 5 Bamboo DPN’s

Pattern: My own, based on gauge and arm measurements. I originally designed it more as a gauntlet that would end right and the wrist and be laced up for a snug fit. However they do seem quite stylish worn "open" with the resulting flap over the back of the hand.

No more photos for a bit now - my camera is in for service. Let's hope it's nothing fatal. It's too bad because there are great things to photograph (stash for ravelry (SCORE!!), a new knitting book and lovely iris from my MIL). But I guess I could find other things to do... like knit :)

Edit: sorry, had paragraph problems again. Had to resort to HTML to get it fixed!

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Summer Knitting Goals

Summer contest alert! Skeins Her Way is offering the chance to win her Fitted Tank pattern and the yarn to make it. Join the fun; even if you don’t win, the anticipation is half the joy of upcoming projects. This might be the first summer that I knit. When I first got started knitting, I made the beginner things like hats and scarves, so immersing myself in a big pile of wool during the hot months wasn’t too appealing. But now I’ve discovered “luxury” class cotton and lighter projects. Yea!

My summer knitting goals:

1. Finish my first lace project AND first full sized garment: Orangina. This project has really shown me the creative power of the knitblog community. The pictures shared by many others have allowed me to see the sheer potential of the design. The beauty of it all springs from the parsimony of the construction and the richness of the possibilities it yields. What fun to see the different effects of other choices related to color, sizing and gauge/blocking on the final product. We’ll see where my version goes.

Here it is at almost 10 repeats. I have a lifeline in there since I seem to be incapable of finding and fixing my errors in lace patters.

2. Make my first pair of socks. My current attempt is waiting to be frogged due to terrible laddering at the “joints” of the DPN’s. How could they betray me like this after all my loyalty? I’m thinking about switching to circulars after this YOU HEAR ME!!!

3. Start the swallowtail shawl in a fingering/sock weight yarn. As previously mentioned, lace in lace weight has kicked my butt. Fortunately I do like the substantial heft of a heavier garment, both in warmth and visual presence (a la brooklyntweed).

4. Work on Christmas gifts!

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Don't Spare Us

A kind gift from one of Mr. M's co-workers. We're enjoying the fresh stuff right now by the bundle.

Yes, I promised more interior house pictures but I'm putting that off because I'm putting off finishing the bathroom (procrastination central right here). Trim painting takes soooooo looooooong and I need another can of paint, and it is really only another 15-25 bucks but it has to stop somewhere!!!! House is sucking up the yarn money!!! *deep breath*
And also there are much better things to do. One of my dear friends recently moved closer so I got to go up and see her yesterday and meet her baby. He is so cute. He has his mommy's blue eyes. We spent a whole day just hanging out and talking. Ah, it was great! We also got a chance to check out a LYS that I haven't been to before. Yes, that is a wall of sock yarn on their web page. And there is more than is pictured. Someday I gotta try this sock thing. It would be a great way to indulge my pension for variegated yarn, which tends to look better skeined than knit up into large items. I was tempted by this in the color "slate" since I am thinking of using some sock yarn to try my first shawl. (Yeah, remember this? I tried to start with some dark, tiny, fuzzy yarn for my first lace knitting and seriously messed with me. Need to see those YO's clearly so I can get the hang of it!) Wow. I am pinging around like a ping-pong ball today... must be the 130 people under 18 that I spent my day with... bit overstimulating.
Ummm... yeah, so I want to try a shawl with some sock yarn and I might even have caved if I had not just seen "Teal over Aquamarine" in Sundara's monthly limited edition yarn update. For the record I was at my computer when she uploaded. I had an email all filled out and ready to go, but I had self control and held back. Even thought it might have been the perfect yarn. And it will never come again. I STUCK WITH THE BUDGET. So am I going to splurge on some pretty, but mass produced yarn that I can get any-old-time after passing that up? No... You know what though, I'm trusting that when I get around to this shawl thing I will find the right yarn, one that speaks to me. Okay, ringing off before this gets any more pathetic...
Edit: sorry - reposted after blogger ate my paragraph breaks. Rant is even less coherent without them.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007


We've been attending a Presbyterian (PCA) church here, and last Sunday our passage for silent preparation jumped out at me:

"O God, teach me to seek you, and reveal yourself to me when I do, for I cannot seek you unless you first teach me, nor find you unless you first reveal yourself to me. Let me seek you in longing, and long for you in seeking. Let me find you in love, and love you in finding."
-Ambrose of Milan, A.D. 339-397

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Now With 47.64% More Cuteness*



It's been a while but I'm back! This week we decided to remodel our bathroom before the next appraisal of our home. Also on the list: complete exterior paint, complete interior paint upstairs, clean and organize a gazillion tons of our stuff. As you may have already guessed, such a monumental feat was hopeless. It happened anyway.

Armed with optimism, good cheer, and many paintbrushes, a plethora of people from our small church descended on our home. They painted, they plumbed, they mopped. They brought dinner and amused us with hours or camaraderie and scintillating conversation. When the vast tide receded, it left upon the shore... a house as cute as a button. I don't think I can find adequate words to express my gratitude.

I'm working on a complete reveal set of photos a la "Extreme Home Makeover" so y'all can see the interior changes too, but first I need to put the finishing touches on the bathroom. Just a few. more. feet. of. trim.

So you don't think I've been slackin' in the knitting department...

I swatched for a little summer project to celebrate.

And something else luscious arrived:

More to come on all of the above :)
*According to a market analysis by a group of leading real-estate agents. Okay, maybe not cuteness, but market value. Pretty much the same thing as far as we can tell. And while we're at it, yes, cuteness is a word... and so is gazillion.

Friday, May 4, 2007

Eye Candy Friday

Not yarn this time but still knitting related. This is my DPN needle case. (Small editorial sidenote: DPN's forever!) I saw one like it in a craft book from the library (title long forgotten) and worked out my own pattern based on my needs. I'm not usually into floral prints, but JoAnn's had several that were so cute together I couldn't walk away. I finished it of with some cream gross grain ribbon and a rich burgundy lining. I was concerned my bamboo needles might soak in some of the color, but it's all worked out fine so far.

Yes, I have been knitting, but it is SECRET knitting for friends and family. Speaking of which... congratulations to my dear friend SCB (blogless) who is graduating from my Alma mater WSU tomorrow. Some of that knitting has been in cougar colors :)

Well, I'm headed up to P-Town this afternoon and I can't wait to see everyone!