Sunday, December 24, 2006
Selbu to Sahara, pre-blocking
Even the inside looks good
I absolutely love the steek coverings on the sleeves.
I love Norwegian steeks
On the wooly board
I've worn it at least half a dozen times since I blocked it. It's holding up well, and it matches my brown cords really nicely. Next time, I wouldn't make it out of cotton, though. Sometimes my yarn choices are stupid.
Wednesday, December 20, 2006
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But I haven't had the time. Maybe later.
Wednesday, November 29, 2006
You are The Devil
Materiality. Material Force. Material temptation; sometimes obsession
The Devil is often a great card for business success; hard work and ambition.
Perhaps the most misunderstood of all the major arcana, the Devil is not really "Satan" at all, but Pan the half-goat nature god and/or Dionysius. These are gods of pleasure and abandon, of wild behavior and unbridled desires. This is a card about ambitions; it is also synonymous with temptation and addiction. On the flip side, however, the card can be a warning to someone who is too restrained, someone who never allows themselves to get passionate or messy or wild - or ambitious. This, too, is a form of enslavement. As a person, the Devil can stand for a man of money or erotic power, aggressive, controlling, or just persuasive. This is not to say a bad man, but certainly a powerful man who is hard to resist. The important thing is to remember that any chain is freely worn. In most cases, you are enslaved only because you allow it.
What Tarot Card are You?
Take the Test to Find Out.
I thought this was interesting...
because it made me think about other places where it might apply.
I'm pretty sure it applies to music, where back in the day, Mozart ripped off his predecessors and contemporaries, and it was good, and now people put samples in their music and get sued.
I'm pretty sure it applies to books, where people have always plagiarized each other, but now 'google search inside' or whatever it's called catches them.
I felt like the author was suggesting the literary equivalent to fashion knockoffs was reading books posted online, or downloading MP3s. Isn't that like shoplifting a Hermes scarf, rather than buying a nearly identical one with someone else's label?
Not that I think plagiarism or sampling without credit is necessarily good...
Friday, November 17, 2006
I tried on my poncho while crocheting it together...
And decided it wasn't worth it to finish making up. Obviously it's not working out. I have since ripped the entire thing out and started again.
Oh, and I did what I should have done when I first noticed a problem--I went online looking for errata. There were some, of course. The length of the final knitted strip should be 128", not 51". I think the 51 refers to after all the short rows are done. I was pretty close this time (not shown... no point, a long thin strip of knitting looks the same as any other.) I also ordered a larger crochet hook, thinking that might help. And you can't just order a crochet hook, you know? So I ordered yarn for another poncho too.
Thursday, November 09, 2006
Oh good, me either.
To make it worse, it's more than twice as long as the schematic, even though I think I'm under gauge.
Maybe the crochet stage will make it all work out. Though crochet has never solved all my problems before. And while it's supposed to use four balls of yarn, I have yet to finish my second.
I guess I'll have enough yarn left over to make matching opera gloves.
Wednesday, November 01, 2006
- If we had sound cards we would spend all our time on YouTube
- If we had sound cards we would keep our speakers on turned up high and would annoy our neighbours
Notwithstanding the fact that there's a TV two cubes over from me and I have had to ask that the volume be shut off on it because they leave it tuned to Detroit PBS or some other irrelevant, asinine program (Detroit traffic comes to mind).
But today I came up with an argument for it.
I like to listen to my MP3 player while I work. And I surf far less when I have headphones on, because then I can't hear management come up behind me. When my battery is dead, I have to surf because there's nothing else to do until it's done charging.
I made another Rachael Ray meal, by the way. I didn't get to eat the leftovers (it was Pasta with sausage and broccoli with Ricotta Surprise from the same "Express Lane Meals") because the man and the boy got to them first.
Monday, October 23, 2006
But the cashier said to me, "Do you like Rachael Ray?"
To which I responded "I've never seen her show, but I keep reading these reviews that say her recipes really work, and I really need some help..." Not that my cooking is bad or anything, I think others in my family might say it's just too infrequent.
Big long pause. "I've seen her show," the cashier said finally.
"I hear she's sort of annoying on TV, " I said.
And the cashier blurted out, "She comes across sort of as if she doesn't know what she's talking about." All righty, then.
I bought the book anyway, and yesterday I hit the grocery store and bought the ingredients for three of the recipes. Sure, that indicates that I missed the point of the book already, but then last night I went home and made "Black Bean and Rice Stoup" (That's too long of a name, and sort of dorky, so in my own mind I refer to it as "Page 64", which might make me as annoying as Rachael Ray, just in a different way.)
It was really good. It took me 42 minutes to make, but maybe I just don't have my Rachael Ray system down yet. And I figure the book paid for itself already. It was $24.95. I would have gone to a restaurant if I didn't want to try something new, and that would have cost me and the boy about $38. Instead I had two beers ($4), and the meal took two cans of black beans, one can of tomatoes, and a cup of corn (the things I didn't already have on hand), which adds up to less than $5. So last night's meal came in at $33. 95. I'm already ahead.
Oh, and the boy ate it (unenthusiastically, but he ate it) and I have four bins of it left in my fridge for lunches this week. Yay, Rachael Ray.
Sunday, September 17, 2006
So I did this...
Beadwork "swatch" (sleeve)
It's Frangipani in Crushed Raspberry, a popular shade I'm thinking, because I've seen it used for a couple of other swatches on the KAL page on Yahoo Groups. I figured I'm a "Tight, bitter knitter" so even though the gauge seems to be a challenge, I would be fine, so I went one needle size and started. I'm resizing it sort of my own way. I like narrow sleeves, so I'm doing the child's Large 18 cm sleeve. That will fit my little wrists (people make fun of them at karate, they're so small and breakable looking) just fine. I'll make it longer, modify the body using the picture and my unique tastes, and end up with something... finished. My sleeve is 18.5 cm around. I figure, close enough.
In the meantime, can I finish this by Christmas?
Selbu to Sahara
I'm thinking yes. It's a good target. I have to do something like 15 rows a week, and I've said I would do that before and done it for a week and a half and then given up...
Sunday, July 16, 2006
That would be #23 from VK Spring/Summer 2005. I like summer projects. As I said to Ed yesterday, this was rated level "Experienced". I found it pretty straight-forward. Perhaps I'm beyond patterns now?
I had some things I wanted to rant about, but I forget what they were, so I won't bother.
Tuesday, July 11, 2006
Sunday I finished the flap cap of the damned, eight days after removing it from time-out. It's adorable. The flaps stick out, but that might be because my hair sticks out. I will use the lessons I learned to make another flap cap again. I might even send it to a magazine (as part of a set, perhaps, with the matching gloves and sweater).
So last night I started #23 from Vogue Knitting Spring/Summer 2005, which I renamed Hippie, because my sensei said "Robyn, you're a hippie from way back" while we were at Karate camp, and this struck me as interesting -- is that how people see me?
I'm using some Lana Grossa Toccata in a dark blue color. There's a mistake in the first row of the first lace pattern. I think by the time I got to the second repeat, I had realized that the yarn-over had to go inside the SSK, though, in order to make the lace panel work right. This is probably why I make such a lame proof-reader -- my eyes fix the mistake before it gets to my brain. However, I did notice the error.
I knit the first ball of yarn for this pattern last night. I could be wearing the garment by the end of July! It's rated Expert, which I can't figure out. Except maybe the really hard part is deciding which size to make. There are three: 30, 32, and 34 inch bust. WTF? It's meant to fit tightly. I just picked the medium, randomly.
VK S/S05 is one of my favourite issues, by the way -- there are three other things that I have the materials to make. I can't remember their names and numbers, but they are (note that I have to give them my own names because Vogue's are so uninteresting):
- Moebius (Norah Gaughan hoodie) Elann Peruvian Highland in a nice pink
- Tennis (Debbie bliss pullover) Orange Silk City yarn, plus the leftover dark blue Toccata as trim
- Twizzle (Jaeger cropped cardigan) I would use some Silk City Bounce that I have lying around, lavender maybe
Sunday, June 25, 2006
- I finished another band of black and another band of white, so Luna just looks longer
- I finished one of the Regia socks and started the second but socks are pretty boring to look at
- I didn't work on Serpentine
- I didn't work on the Jade hat that is in time-out
- Selbu to Sahara is ten rows longer, more about that...
I decided that if S->S is ever going to be finished, I have to set myself a schedule. I counted how many rows are left in the body, and then I decided if I'm going to wear it in October, I have to finish the body in 10 weeks. I have 150 rows on the body... therefore I have to knit 15 rows per week. I doubt this schedule will survive the day, because today is the last day of the week, and I have five rows to go.
However, I did finish a book!
Robyn's Book Reviews for June
In June, I read three books (and it's unlikely that I'll finish any more in the next five days):
"The Davinci Code" by Dan Brown
This book made me feel smart. I felt way ahead of the main character when he didn't realize that he could just hold a block of mysterious text up to the mirror and it would be English. When he was trying to figure out the bit about the Newtonian orb that had seeded flesh and rosy womb (or vice versa), I kept yelling "Apple" at him, and he kept thinking Venus. So anyway, I was flattering myself with my obvious genius, when I realized that everyone else who read it probably figured it out just as fast, and that's why the book is so popular -- false flattery. It was an okay read, nothing special. I was amazed by how many people had read this book at my karate club (I carried it around during karate summer camp weekend because it wasn't a demanding read, good for a plane ride or
"Like Water for Chocolate" by Laura Esquivel
I wanted to like this book more than I actually did. It was translated out of Spanish, and left me wondering if perhaps Spanish has less tenses than English. The book is a story about someone who is the family cook. Her whole day, her whole life is spent in the kitchen. Hence, in order to describe her singular focus, recipes are mixed into the story. But I always found the appearance of a recipe very jarring, and the only reason I could think of was that to my ear, the wrong verb tense was used. I liked the movie better.
"The Devil's Broker" by Frances Stonor Saunders
It's the biography of John Hawkwood, an English mercenary commander who worked in Italy from 1360-1392. Not a lot is known about the personal details of Hawkwood's life, so a lot of the descriptions of his actions are phrased in theoretical terms... "We think he...", "He may have... but more likely..." If the book had just been about him, it would have been very thin, indeed. However, each chapter described an aspect of Italian medieval life that is touched on in the theme of whatever Hawkwood was doing at the time. So early on there is a section about how to manage a mercenary company. There was a chapter about a wedding that both Hawkwood and Chaucer attended, where she described how the rich ate, and also how poisoning was really popular back then, which was followed by a chapter about a campaign that went really badly, where she described how the common people might have all been walking around in a haze, since they ate little and what grain they did eat might have been laced with a hallucinogenic fungus (not on purpose). So that's why they might have been so gullible to the church.
This book made me feel that some of what I had thought of as dreadful fantasy novels were not so bad after all. I realized that "The Chronicles of the Black Company" by Glenn Cook (which I thought was a trilogy but just discovered has five books, of which I've only read three, while researching this entry) were actually quite well researched. When I knew nothing about life in the medieval period, and so all fantasy novels seemed sort of hack (made-up). Also, I don't know that much about the history of the Catholic church, so I learned a lot.
I really liked this book. The author had a really good sense of humour, so it was quite amusing, in addition to being educational. The author's other book is about the CIA, so I guess she's accustomed to filling in informational gaps with guess-work. I just got Ed to start reading it.
Saturday, June 17, 2006
I named it after Luna Lovegood on the boy's suggestion.
My what a poor photo this is. If I knew how to make it thumbnail size perhaps it would look better. However, it does prove that the latest sweater in my obsession with Barbara Walker's Top-down Set-in-sleeve is going to fit just fine. It will also be an awesome and often worn addition to my wardrobe, I'm sure. It needs another row of white, and then will finish off with black ribbing.
I have decided to get over my obsession with not posting decent photos of stuff I designed myself, since who am I kidding? I have no real plans or desire to publish this stuff in a magazine.
More on my current obsession with people who complain about parents who leave work at quitting time to get their kids... I can understand the other side of the problem. When I don't have to get the boy after work, I have a hard time figuring out when to go home. Perhaps what we need is people encouraging us to leave more often.
Actual exchange between the president of my division and a co-worker's little boy yesterday:
President: How old are you?
President: When do you turn four?
Boy: On my birthday.
Career-limiting child, or what?
Actual exchange between me and my son:
Boy: Did you... paint your toenails?
Me: (now following him around the house trying to get him to admire the color) Yes, isn't this a great color? It's orange. Come on, look at it.
Boy: Yeah. Nice. Can I play runescape?
Wednesday, June 14, 2006
I'm going to try once more. Perhaps I won't choose Canon's software this time.
Prairie Tank, Sock and Book I Read
I have no idea where I was going with this picture, but here it is. The book was good. The boy made me read it.
And this is Prairie blocked. It's finished now. I've even worn it. I finished Sigyn, too. The socks are not done, however.
I have many things to rant about. I'll try to choose just one. Today in Salon's Broadsheet I read an entry that was all about parents who leave work at 6 to go get their kids, and non-parent coworkers who feel put out by it. I have just one thing to say: No one is getting paid to work after six (presumably) and the parent is using it as a good excuse. And good for him/her. I work with someone who has recently bought a condo (single male, no kids) and I don't feel at all guilty going to get the boy when IT'S TIME TO LEAVE because I spent no time on the phone with my real estate agent. Oh, and if you want to leave to have a life too, for god's sake, just say so. I won't hold it against you.
Wednesday, May 24, 2006
In the meantime, I finished the Prairie Tunic from IK Summer 06. Indeed, there was an error in the pattern, as I learned from fathomharvill.typepad.com/fathom/. The person who posted about the error there decreased on the middle every second row and on the outside every row. I made armhole decreases instead. It worked.
I started the socks with the Opal yarn. I started a top-down set-in-sleeve pullover with the black/cream Morea yarn I bought from Elann. I didn't buy anything... but that will probably change in the next 48 hours.
Oh, and I finished the pirate socks, and I bought the shoes that go with them. www.bagginsshoes.com -- scroll down to the Black/milk/Ochre summer print with the skulls on them. I am in love.
Sunday, April 23, 2006
- 5 balls of Briggs and Little 1 ply in color Jade
- 1 ball of Opal in a yellow-and-blue mix which calls itself Magic but as I'm not really a sock afficionado, I don't know what it means
- Brittany size 2 DPNs
- Addi Turbo 36" size 4 circular
- "Heirloom Knitting" by Sharon Miller
- "Inspired Cable Knits" by Fiona Ellis
Parking was hellish and looked hopeless, so after driving around for maybe five minutes I gave up, went home and rode my bike down even though it was about 7 degrees Celcius and raining. Besides the parking advantage of a bicycle, it also kept me from buying more than I could carry.
It was interesting. Venders I was surprised not to see there included Fiddlesticks Knitting (though her patterns were somewhat ubiquitous) and She Ewe Knits. I saw Robin Melanson at the Needle Arts Bookshop booth.
Wednesday, April 19, 2006
There's no way I'm going to reknit the whole sleeve for a half-inch error just above the cuff. Maybe I could snip it and remove the cuff, then rework it down, removing the affronting four rows. I think I will do the body the way it's written, then attach the sleeve, and make my decision at that point. It's just that the sweater's dimensions are already on the large side. I'm doing the smaller of two sizes, and it's supposed to come out 24 inches long. I have often shortened sweaters designed for that length to be closer to 20 inches, because I'm only 5'3". It's hard to tell from the "artistic" (Ed referred to it as Allanah Myles-like, but I bet the Norse photographer doesn't remember her) pose of the photo how long the sweater is.
I'll probably be more enthusiastic about finishing it when it's September and I can envision wearing it. Which means that I'll probably finish it in the spring of 2007, when I need to finish something to get a "finishing point" so I can buy more yarn.
Speaking of buying more yarn, I'm thinking I shouldn't. I was going to go on a yarn diet (did I ever mention I have yarn bulimia? No offense to people or people with friends with food bulimia) until I finished 19 projects. But that strikes me as wholly unrealistic. So I made a compromise: I won't buy yarn until I finish 7 projects, then I will buy one project. Rinse and repeat. Rinse and repeat again.
So, 21 projects out, three in.
I started the Prairie Tunic from IK Spring 2006. Fathom just abandoned it, but I'm doing well. Apparently there's an error, though I didn't find it when I read the pattern. I think I don't notice errors that other people are stymied b y because I'm not sure I follow the pattern. However, I am lost without a good picture.
I'm using Tocatta in Cyclamen that I bought from Elann last month. Part of a March-long yarn binge. Ugh.
That will be one... then the socks and Sigyn... and four more, and I can buy more yarn!
Wednesday, April 05, 2006
Victoria tank finished
And with that done, I decided that it was time to finish the sleeve of Selbu to Sahara (or the other way around).
Sleeve Sahara to Selbu
And I started the body. This was mostly so I could have a project to carry around last weekend. With the Jade hat in time-out still, I needed something portable.
Start of Body
I'm making the small/medium, and I noticed as I started the alternating color stripes on the body that I made a mistake on the sleeves. I did medium/large length, but small/medium width. So I'm replicating the error on the body. You can't tell in the picture (because I took it before I got to rows 5-8 of the chart, where the error lies).
I finally finished reading "Lost Girls" by Andrew Pyper. It picked up for me about 130 pages from the end, when the main character, Barth, stopped doing so much coke. My mother gave me this book in January because the author was born in the same year as me. I always wonder what she's trying to say when she does things like that.
And I started reading "Piratica" by Tanith Lee, which made me think that my next small project should be a pair of pirate socks, like http://gromitknits.typepad.com/ is making. I might start them this weekend. I only have three projects on the needles right now, after all.
Wednesday, March 15, 2006
Yep, it's the Victoria Tank by Veronik Avery from IK Summer 2004. I'm using Jaeger Siena in Marshmallow. I just finished the first ball of five, just finished the seventh pattern repeat. I'm not sure if it's the yarn I love, or the pattern, or just the fact that it's not that frigging Jade hat. Or Sigyn. Or Selbu to Sahara.
Maybe it's that I bought the perfect pale pink tank top to wear under it last week.
Thursday, March 02, 2006
However, I finished Jade and Manhattan. I like them both. I wear them a lot. They both fit pretty well.
My concerns about Manhattan coming out really large did not happen. The cast-on edges stopped rolling after I blocked it.
Manhattan and Jade
Jade's armholes are too large, but I know what I did wrong, so I'm itching to start another top-down set-in-sleeve sweater so I can try it out. Very wearable. I've started gloves to fraternally match it, and then I'm going to do a hat. And then I'll probably send it all to IK.
Okay, I have to say what the problem was. You know how when you knit the front and back of a sweater, the armhole goes up to the top of your shoulder? Well, when I calculated the armhole, I forgot that, and I used the number that should have been the height of the armhole as the depth of the sleeve cap. So my sleeve cap is 2.5 inches taller than it should be, and the armhole is very wide. It looks like a sweater from the 80's, only cropped. I still love it.
I did get a rejection from IK a month or so back. It was very nice -- encouraging me to submit again etc. Carol of www.goknitinyourhat.blogspot.com posted her rejection, and mine wasn't identical, so I can take the comments the writer made to be non-generic. That's always nice.
I made three pair of socks and a hat.
A hat and six socks
I worked a lot on Sigyn -- the front and back are done!
I have thirteen rows left on the first sleeve of Selbu to Sahara. Maybe on the weekend I will get to start the body.
Sahara to Selbu Sleeve and Sigyn front and back
I typed up 40 pages of the BSFN. I read three novels:
"Shade's Children" by Garth Nix (forced on me by the boy)
"Wicked" by Gregory Maguire (my sister gave it to me for christmas because I asked for it)
"The Walking Tour" By Kathryn Davis (recommended by a reviewer on Salon I think)
I read something else too, but I forget what.
If I could choose, I would write like Kathryn Davis.
Monday, January 02, 2006
My first ball
That's a lot easier than the ones I made with my nostepinde.
Oh, and the yarn was the Christmas present I bought myself (You know the average person buys themselves a gift, and its average cost is $87) -- eight skeins each of Rowan 4-ply in Holly and Gingerbread.
The ball is Gingerbread. My total was $78 or so. I bought it at Webs because by the time I got back from a lunch the day it went on sale at Elann, there was only one shade left, and not mine.
For Christmas I also got Scarf Style from my sister (because I asked for it because so many people raved about it, though I had never seen it) and I gifted myself with "Mary Thomas's book of Knitting Patterns" while we were at Borders on the 29th.
While I was there, I looked at lots of knitting books, because the stores in the US seem to have so many more books than Chapters does in Toronto. (I will save my rant on that topic for some other day.) I considered Sarah Dallas's new book, but didn't buy it because I decided all I liked about it was the styling on the cover sweater. I considered "Handknit Holidays", the Tricoter book, and "The Knitting Experience: Color" but I just wasn't in a buying mood, I guess. Oh, and I considered a lot of sock books.
This year's only knitted gift was socks for my older sister, by request. I made the Pomatomus socks from Knitty, but I didn't even take a picture before I gave them away. They came out awesomely, and were well received.
I think I will go make another ball of yarn now. That was too fun.