Wednesday, September 29, 2004

It's funny how life goes...

Mayflwr's comment from my Sept. 24 post sent me to her website where I discovered that, not only is she a (fabulous) knitter, she is also a senior in college, majoring in pretty much the same thing that I did. Going through and reading some of her posts brought back a flood of college memories for me, and I must say I was getting pretty misty with longing to have those years back.

At the end of my freshman year in college, I declared my concentration in metalsmithing, which is part of a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. I happily proceeded with the program until my fourth year of college, when I decided I just didn't want to leave. I applied for another year's worth of loans, and added on a journalism minor to justify my staying in school. You see, college is such a creative and supportive environment that I just couldn't stand to leave the nest. Once my fifth year rolled around, it hit me that I would actually have to start paying those student loans back someday, and that I should really graduate. I received a fantastic art education, but unfortunately, our program failed to stress that you'd actually need to earn money after graduation, and art just isn't the way to do that. I had worked in a jewelry repair shop for a year and found that I hated the work, so being a bench jeweler was out of the question, as was the hope of living off of the sale of any of my pieces. After applying and being rejected from nearly every museum and arts organization with a steady payroll in town, I got my first real job at an auction house. I loved my work there and, at first, tried to make art on the side. Unfortunately, the hours at my job were long, and by the time I got home, I was so dead-tired that I couldn't bring myself to make anything, or do anything for that matter. I insisted that I wanted to keep making art, but gradually, I have let go of it. I don't make jewelry or metalwork anymore, but hold the hope that maybe someday I will again.

What does all of this have to do with knitting, you ask? Well, when I was in school, I made a series of knitted necklaces. That was actually the very first knitting I had done- taught by an older co-worker on the night shift of my college job (I later found out that I had been knitting wrong, though on wire it made no difference). To view some of my selected works from this time, including one of the knitted necklaces, click here. In the years since I gave up metalsmithing, I've often felt that there was something missing, and knitting has been the balm to soothe my restless hands.

Happy knitting!

Tuesday, September 28, 2004

Exhibit "a"

I present to you what I did this weekend, when I should have been working on the baby hat (and wedding planning):


I just love cables, don't you? They're like top-down raglans- magic. So, I promised myself that I'd knit all weekend on the baby hat and get it finished before the baby actually gets here, but of course I didn't. A friend and I knitted at the Coffee Tree Roasters in Shadyside (which has fabulously comfortable chairs) on Saturday and I worked on the hat a bit, but not much. I still have an inch to go before I start the shaping.


Maybe I'll have it done before the baby is born.

Friday, September 24, 2004

Oh dear...

I finished the scarf I'd been working on- knitting a bit here and there. The only problem now is, I have really nothing else going on, knitting-wise. Eek! I guess I will pick up the bucket hat once again, as the weather is finally getting nice and cool enough for a felted wool hat. I am still struggling with the baby hat to match the baby cardigan but hope to have lots of knitting time this weekend to conquer it. Maybe I will even have the chance to cast on for the Woolspun turtleneck that I've been planning to make for about a year now. What I really need to do this weekend is some wedding planning stuff, which I view as an absolute chore. After almost 10 months, I finally got around to booking a location, and with a year to go before the wedding, I should really be looking at bands and photographers. But I don't want to. My advice to any brides out there- hire a wedding planner!

Monday, September 20, 2004

Whew- glad the weekend's over

I never thought that I would say that, but I am glad that hurricane Ivan has passed through Pittsburgh. We live along the Allegheny River, and for a while on Saturday, the flooding situation looked pretty hairy as the river was rising at about 4 inches per hour. Thankfully, we escaped with no flooding (the river crested at with about 2 feet to spare)- and were way luckier than our neighbors in the other riverfront towns like Etna, Sharpsburg and Millvale, where many, many homes and businesses were destroyed.

With all of the commotion, I got zero knitting done, but I hope to get back into the swing of things today and should have some knitting stuff to post later this week.

Thursday, September 16, 2004

Ding ding ding..we have a winner!

Thanks to all of you that suggested that mattress stitch would fix my happy hat problem. Here is the corrected seam:


Indeed, I was mattress stitching all wrong, and the lovely ladies at SnB last night were good enough to give me a primer on the mattress stitch. What a genius seaming technique!

Also at SnB last night, I ripped out the blasted baby hat that I've re-started, oh, 5 times now, because popular opinion proved it would have been too small to fit a baby head. Who knew they had such huge noggins? No photos of that. I've been struggling with knitting it on dpns from the get-go because I was too cheap to go out and buy a shorter circular, but I think I may have to break down and do that, just for sanity's sake.

I also got to see the jacket that Jane is knitting, and boy is that yarn fabulous. Of course I can't remember the name, but it was to die for.

Friday, September 10, 2004

Happy hat

Holy stripes! Here's my finished hat:

stripes make me happy!

And here's the pattern and yarn info, etc..

Again, I feel that I must reiterate that this yarn rocks. I've already bought a few skeins in a pretty blue colorway for a hat for the fiance. The only problem that I had with this pattern, though, was the seaming of it. Since the yarn is in so many beautiful stripes, you can really see the yarn that I used for the seaming:

this seam makes me unhappy

Other than solving the problem by knitting this in the round, can anyone suggest a seaming solution? What do you all think about stitching up the seam on a sewing machine?

Tuesday, September 07, 2004


Here's my finished Paris Loop:

another Paris Loop!

Here's the progress along the way. While I think it looks nice with the substituted Woolspun yarn, I'd love to try another one in the Gedifra Cicco. Oh to have unlimited knitting hours!

Here's what I did last night while watching television:

oh, stripey goodness!

There are no words to describe how much I am in love with this yarn. This is going to be the 2 x 2 ribbed hat from the Simply Noro book by Jane Ellison, and I think I'll have to make a few more as holiday gifts. I found myself getting really excited every time a new color started to stripe itself in as I knitted. I'll definitely need to make a sweater out of Kureyon, and soon.

As for knitting projects currently on my plate, there is the aforementioned hat, a bottoms-up bucket that I started way back and sort of abandoned this summer, the scarf that I've been working on bit by bit and I'm still thinking about making a hat to match that baby sweater. After that, I think I will start on a turtleneck sweater out of more Woolspun (yep, I've got tons of the stuff).

Thursday, September 02, 2004

Poncho a-go-go

I finished Paris Loop last night - woo! - and should have a chance to photograph it in all its loopy glory this weekend. Check out Gidget Casts On's Paris Loop here- purly goodness! At my knitting group last night, there were five people poncho-ing. It's a sickness, I tell you.

So, what's next? I have a few odds and ends to knit, like I think I will make a matching hat for the baby sweater, and I still have that ball of Kureyon tempting me in the stash. I would like to make Glampyre's top-down raglan, and saw that Carrieoke (or maybe it was her sister?) made one in Kureyon. Hmmm...