There's a bit of a sale at the shop!!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Yippee!!

I recently convinced Carl to let me bring my wheel from my Mom's to our apartment. We picked it up yesterday along with a brand new computer (woo-hoo). The deal is that I have to put it away whenever I'm done with it so it now hides under our spiral staircase when not in use. He usually works on Sundays so I get the house to myself and I can just spin! I took it out this morning and I finally finsihed plying some of my first yarn from the wheel and I think its great! Its one ply of merino and tencel from CJ Kopeck and the other ply is a blend of alpace, wool, silk and angora from Glacial Ridge Alpaca's. Its lumpy and bumpy but I think it's just perfect.

When I was in Rhinebeck a couple weekend ago I bought myself a DVD called Spinning Wool - Basics and Beyond and after watching it the other weekend I got really excited about getting back in my wheel and trying out some of the things they talked about. After I was done plying I pulled out some beautiful targhee top from The Wool Room. I'm trying to spin it as fine as I can so I can either ply it and have a heavier fingering or not ply it and have some lace weight yarn. Its a really pretty color and I can't wait to finish it. I worked on this yarn for about 2-3 hours this morning but I had to stop because we have to clean our apartment before guests arrive on friday so I put it away and started sorting my summer/spring and fall/winter clothes. Now I'm off to do the boring things.

Oh and GO YANKEES!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Has it really been 4 months?

Man does time fly? I can't believe my last post was in July! A lot has happened since then. I'll do a super quick recap.

Most importantly I found my Lady Eleanor shawl so everything is now right with the world.

At the end of July I ended up hurting my arm and spent over a month trying to get rid of my cubital tunnel syndrome. There wasn't much knitting going on during this period but I tried to finish the Cabled Riding Jacket for our Ireland trip at the end August but I failed. It still needs a sleeve and collar but I'm a little to mad at it to work on it at the moment. I think the cables are what hurt my arm the most so I'm bitter.

Ireland was absolutely amazing! I wanted to post throughout the trip but my little netbook didn't work half the time we were there. While we were in Ireland Carl finally popped the question so I'm now officially engaged which is super exciting and a little scary since I now have to plan a wedding (eek!). We have a date, 10/9/2010, a reception place and we meet with the Reverend this weekend. I think we're making good progress.

September was uneventful. I basically spent the month going to PT and trying to get my arm back in tip-top shape. I got to a point where I could knit again and I finished a really lovely sweater of my own design and I'm in the process of writing up the pattern. I really want to get it written and maybe submit it to knitty.com just for kicks. When they reject it I can just put it up on ravelry for all to see. I really like this sweater I think its classy but sexy. Hopefully it's unique enough for knitty to want it.

Last weekend was Rhinebeck and of course I went. Saturday was also my birthday so I spent the day buying myself many presents, petting sheep and gorging myself on yummy food. The only negative was that it was so cold that I couldn't even be bothered with taking pictures. That and I had so much stuff I could barely carry it all. Of course now my arm hurts again but I'll just have to try to not knit for a little while (yah right) and it will be better.

I hope there are still people out there reading this but if not that's cool. I'm looking forward to blogging again. Especially, with all this wedding planning I think I'll need somewhere to just let it all out. I hope you've all had a great four months!! And we'll talk again real soon.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Help me choose!

I found these knitting mugs on cafe press and I can't decide. Number 1 is cute and funny but Number 2 is outragous but it could be too much! Which would you choose? Should I be bold or cute?
 
Sorry for being MIA but our laptop broke and I haven't been able to replace it yet. Once its fixed I can update the shop (i have so much to add!!) and I'll be able to blog again. Hopefully we'll have a new computer soon.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Its a sad day...

It is official, Lady Eleanor has been lost. Just join me as I long her passing. She was a very good knit. We all loved her. She warmed us while we napped and comforted us while we had to flight in death machines...I mean planes. She will be missed.
MySpace Generators

Monday, June 22, 2009

Things that need to be explained to me...

Watching the Open at Work - Good
Knitting on a break in a conference room with co-workers - Bad
 
Ponder that!

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Pondering...

I found this article about etsy being a false feminist fantasy and I really don't know what to think about it. There are bunch of people over at the etsy shop group on ravelry talking about it and that's how I found it. I know that I set up my shop as an outlet for my creative side. I'd love to be able to dye yarns for a living and become the next Lorna's Laces but that's not what I expect from etsy. If I wanted to make this a real business I'd probably come up with a real business plan, talk to some of the friends we do have in the textile/wool industry, make deals with bricks and mortar stores in my area and get my name out there at festivals. But I'm not doing these things. I feel like etsy gave me a community of people, yes they are mostly women, who love to be creative too. I would still be dyeing yarns and fiber even if I didn't have an etsy shop but I wouldn't be able to experiment as much because I'd run out of room in my apartment! Etsy has given me the freedom to create. I don't know why there are less men on etsy, maybe they're just not interested. Maybe the first commenter on the article summed it up. If its not getting them off or its not something they really need men just aren't interested. Women like the impulse buy. Maybe its as simple as that. I don't know...any opinions?

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Nothing like brown baggin it!

Sittin in the park drinkin, cold, and watchin Carl play some softball. I hope I'm not a bad luck charm...

Friday, June 12, 2009

Another night at the ballet

Tonight I'm seeing Giselle and its supposed to be amazing. I wish had someone to share this with but I guess that's why have you all.

I'm currently standing in line waiting to go in. It's just me and a lot of old people. I was hoping they'd be open so I could run in and pee but no I've got to wait. I'm off to do my pee pee dance.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Poldark!

I finally found someone selling both volumes of the original production of Poldark. I spent the weekend watching 4 of 8 discs while spinning, dyeing and even doing my accounting homework. How managed to squeeze nearly 12 hours of movie watching in between all that work I will never know. I got a bunch dyed, including all the club orders which are drying and should ship out in a day or two!

My spinning is getting much better too. I finished this 5 oz batt of angora/alpaca blend and start on some awesome merino from LuLu's Yarns (I might have that name wrong but I know she's on etsy so Lux something so search for that undersellers. She was my secret pal last year and her stuff is gorgeous).

Tha cabled jacket is starting to frustrate me so were taking a break for a day or two. I managed to finish one shetland shopper on friday and it's great for holding almost anything. I can't wait to go to the "country" and got to some farmstands and fill it up.

I guess the weekend is over and I should get back to the after work relaxation.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

woo..

New Twist Collective! These little gators are so stinkin cute! And this sweater is awesome! I need to resist buying the pattern...
 
Does this mean the new Knitty will be up soon?

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Lazy Saturday

I should be doing my work for accounting class but instead I'm working on the Cabled Riding Jacket for our Ireland trip. I'm just about done with the charted bit and then I have to spend some time trying to understand the written instructions. Hopefully this will all happen today.

Tonight we have yet another birthday dinner for my brother (he turned 30 on May 23rd, man is he getting old hahaha). And afterwards Carl and I are going to get back to planning his little trip. Of course this trip means I can't go to Sock Summit this year but  sometimes you just have to be selfless. Poor me, I have to go to Ireland instead...

I doubt any will care but I'm very excited so I'm going to share. I finally found someone on ebay who was selling the complete Poldark Mini-Series for Region 1! I don't know if any of you ever watched this but I used to love it when I was kid. I used to check every PBS station, no matter where I was, to see if I could catch an episode. I've been looking for the tapes or DVDs for my little (read: HUGE and obsessive) movie collection for years. Last night at about 11pm I had a feeling I should check ebay one more time and there it was. And the seller had 8 copies! EIGHT! And now he has 7. I can't wait for them to get here. Hopefully I can kick Carl out of the house for a few nights so I can hunker-down on the couch and watch. And one want to take a cute, nice, funny, half Argentine man for a couple nights? But you have to give him back!

OT: I'm currently watching How Clean is Your House and they have a blind man vacuuming and waxing the wood around the house. I'm very impressed that he does all the things he does. He spends his day riding horses and mucking stalls....very impressive.

OK back to work... 

Friday, May 29, 2009

Just Wonderful

I'm on the bus headind back from the ballet and it was wonderful. I think it might be my new favorite. The second act was amazing. The men had some impressive passes across the stage. There were moments where they seemed to stop in mid-air. All in all a great night out, even if I was all on my own. Though I will never understand why some people think jeans are appropriate attire for a friday night at the ballet...

Despite the Rain...

Summer is here!

Last summer I started treating myself to ballet tickets for the summer. I just love the ballet and tonight is my first night of the summer. I'm seeing Le Corsaire which will be filled with lovely male dancers. Sadly, my favorite, Angel Corella, isn't dancing tonight. He's just beautiful. He's leap, he's turns...I could watch him for hours. Made I'll get to see him next time.

Look at him he's just gorgeous!



The other sad thing about the ballet is that I have to go alone. Carl tried to go with me once and just hated it. Sometimes I can rope a friend into coming but its rare. I'm going to grow up to be one of those little old ladies who go to the ballet alone. I should bring my knitting as practice!

Have a happy friday everyone!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Yum...

Just made some sour dough. I can't wait for it to cool so I can eat it already. I hope it tastes as good as it looks. We really need to get a good bread knife one of these days.

I wish you could smell it...its wonderful!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Mothers Day Update

I finished Mom's present early last week, gave them to her on Sunday and she absolutely loved them! She makes a great foot model too! I used the Althea pattern by Kirsten Kapur and 2 skeins of Louet Gems. She's on a pink-kick at the moment so she was super excited to have pink socks. We then ate some breakfast and headed over to Flying Fingers in Tarrytown so she could find some yarn. Of course she found all sorts of pinky things she wanted and of course I fell off the wagon and bought 14 skeins of yarn to make the Cabled Riding Jacket from Loop-d-Loop. In my defense, I only did this because I knew I would only make the thing if I actually bought the yarn for it so I seized the moment and made the purchase. The silk shawl I'm working on is about a finished. I need to pick up more yarn for the edging but I haven't decided what I want to do yet so I'm going to put that down till the weekend and swatch for the jacket.
 
I think I was inspired to make the jacket 1) because it gorgeous and 2) because I'm in the process of planning Carl's 30th birthday trip to Ireland. I know its an extravagant gift but I love the kid and he really wants to go so I'm scrounging up the cash and scouring the travel guides to find the absolute cheapest way to do this trip. So basically, if I'm not working, dyeing (shop update this week woo) or knitting I'm looking at flights and hotels and destinations...so if you have any tips, ideas or deals you know of please send them my way! I was originally planning to go during the off-season but things changed and we're now going at the end of August so my planning has been ramped up.
 
Ok back to work...I'm a busy busy bee!

Monday, May 4, 2009

You spin my head right round right round...

video

I got to spend the afternoon trying out my first ever spinning wheel. I love love love my wheel and I'm so sad that I have to hide it at mom's till I'm able to clear out enough space (as dictated by Carl) to bring it home. I guess I'm going to be spending a lot more time with mom. Anyway, today a managed to spin up a 4 ounce batt of merino and tencel that I bought from CJKopec a long long time ago and its beautiful. Ok it lumpy and bumpy but it still beautiful to me. I only have the one single so I wonder what I will ply it with...also I probably should invest in a lazy kate so plying will be easier. Anyone have any pointers for plying?I'm sure I'll spin up something this weekend and will want to ply right away.


Friday, May 1, 2009

Yeah! Yarn!

I managed to squeeze in one knitting store, Great Balls of Yarn in West Palm Beach. It was great and there was a really cute puppy and the ladies were so nice. Carl waited in the car which I thought was a bad move since they apparently ply the men with beer to keep them happy while they wait. I only bought two things. Some yarn to make this cute sideways sweater they had as a sample and a little something for Karen (a.k.a Ms. Choo Choo Knits).

We're off to the pool for some sun (and some poolside knitting)

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Sorry

Just read my last post and its filled with silly typos...sorry...the yarn shops are not in the air...ah vacation

Gone...

Off to FL for a long weekend. I've got a silk shawl and mom's secret present. We're vacationing with 2 of our guy friends so is just me and the boys so there will be much teasing about the knitting but who cares! I mapquested a couple yarn shops in the air and hope to steal the car tomorrow so I can explore.

Have a great weekend!

Oh and I apoloogize for typos...we're at the poolside bar...

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Yarn Harlot + Graham Norton = AWESOME!

Ok someone posted this on Ravelry and I'm just stealing it but it is awesome!

Monday, April 27, 2009

Good-Bye to The Point

I woke up this morning to a very sad email...The Point is closing on Wednesday. I headed down to the shop after work so I could use my last gift certificate and say good-bye to a truely wonderful store. The place was packed and the walls were near bare and everyone was rather somber. I will really miss this place. It was a wonderful community. I learned to dye there and spin. I really hate to see it go.

Friday, April 24, 2009

New Rules

Choo Choo and I have becoming up with new rules regarding stash enhancement:
 
  1. No wool till August
  2. If we go to an outlet-type store (i.e., webs) we are allowed to buy wool if a specific project is in mind and we have not purchased yarn for said project on an earlier date.
  3. Store credits and gift cards can only be used if they expire before August OR if we're buying non-wool and/or books
  4. Books are ok - as long as they have a larger purpose - such as designing and we will try to BORROW from each other more - if one of us has a book - with the exception of a handy designing book cause that's a like a text book or a bible

Let's see if we can stick to them. And Yes I quoted you Karen.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

2 Degrees of Separation

People who have been with me since the beginning know of my love of:
 
1) All things British
2) Men in knee britches
3) The Scarlet Pimpernel
4) And anything written about, in or during the 1700-early 1900's...in particular the Napoleonic Wars and Jane Austen.
 
So you wouldn't have been shocked that I created a colorway of lace weight inspired The Purple Gentian from Lauren Willig's book The Pink Carnation.
 
Background covered...now on to the good stuff. I logged into my Rav account last night like I always do (about 90x a day) and I had a message from a lovely lady telling me that she's very good friends with Lauren Willig and she saw my Purple Gentian colorway and just had to send it to Lauren because she would get a kick out of it. Apparently, Lauren loves it. YAY! Now how do I get to meet her????

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

I want to be here

And not in an office right now...

Alone

Am I the only one who doesn't Twitter? I plurk, I facebook, I rav, I blog...do I need to twitter? Knitty twitters, our congressmen/women twitter, mothers, fathers, brothers...it seems like the whole world twitters but me. I hope I'm not missing anything.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

My Father

Remember how I had to make a GIANT sweater for my daddy because he's one BIG man...well here he is back in 1984 on my baptism day...

...he's so skinny and lanky!! I could have finished by Christmas if I had been knitting for 1984 Dad.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Enjoying the weather

Yesterday Carl and I went for a hike in Blue Mountain Resevation to advantage of the beautiful weather (and I work off some of our winter fat). We drove up in the morning to the park and set off on the trail. Unfortunately, we forgot to bring our hiking book and had no map. Ok I say we but I'm the one who left it in the car. Mapless, we wandered through the woods for a couple of hours and had a marvelous time. Oh and we brought the Doctor along as well...he was just itchin to get outside.



And this morning I made bread! Now if only I had a proper bread knife. I ordered a couple bread making books so hopefully there will be more bread baking in my future.



And this afternoon I'm heading to The Point to meet Ysolda


Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Where does the time go?

I can tell you...Tax Season! Now that the busy time at work is over I can safely resume my knit-blogging. I wanted to write something several times over the last few weeks but all I could think about was how tired I was or how annoyed I was with something at work. I vowed that I would never discuss, particularly in a negative way, work, family or friends on the blog and I think I would have broken that vow if I wrote earlier. Now that the stress is lightening up and I'm returning to regular Alyssa (not stressed out, shrilly bitch Alyssa) I'm back and I've been bitten by the knitting bug.
 
I had Good Friday off and spent the morning/afternoon working on the Rosebud Vest. I got the pattern and yarn from the Brair Rose booth at Rhinebeck last year. The pattern has you knitting in pieces and I hate pieces so I knit the faux-cable patterned bottom flat and then joining in the round to do the St st part till the armpits and then back to flat. I finished it about an hour before I had to leave to catch that train to Mom's (ok I started it Wednesday night, I'm not that speedy). I quickly threw it on so I could admire my handy work and realized that the straps were too short so my neck whole was tiny. I was very bummed. I need to do some minor surgery on the thing one night this week. But its basically done and I can't wait to wear it to Rhinebeck next year. 
 
When mom picked me up at the station that evening we made a wrong turn on the way back to the highway and I spotted a knitting store I had never seen on that street before. I made her park and we went in. Apparently, Flying Fingers is no longer in Irvington, NY but moved to Tarrytown, NY. Where was I when this move happened? Anyway, we bummed around in the store for a while. I made her flip through Naughty Needles and we had a good laugh. Mom picked out some yarns she liked and I bought them so I can make her some presents. I've already cast-on something for Mother's Day. I'm not going to say much about it till she gets it because she might read the blog (you never know with my Mom she's a very good lurker). When we were done (and I was broke) we strolled around town for bit and got back in the car. As we were approaching the exit that would take us to Nyack and to Jane at Knitting Nation I asked if we could go to the knitting store as she turned on the blinker to get off. And we continued our spontaneous yarn crawl.
 
The last time we were at Knitting Nation Mom bought two pattern books and no yarn. This time she wanted to get the yarn for at least one project but we had to find the pattern first. We were in the back of the store with Jane going through piles and piles of Debbie Bliss books till we finally found one of the sweaters. Mom then re-organized the Debbie Bliss area and scurried off to find yarn. I flipped through the new Sally Melville book Mother-Daughter Knits and fell in love. You know how everyone was head-over-heels for A Fine Fleece? Well I didn't get it but I now get how they felt because its exactly how I feel about this book. I want to make everything in it. In fact I bought the yarn to make the Reversible Tank right then and there and cast-on first thing Saturday morning. I worked all day on it (between dyeing) and begged Mom to let me bring it to church on Sunday (she said no) and I finished it up Sunday night! I love love love this book...go...buy it!
 
Anyway, Saturday night I took a wee break from the tank and helped Mom swatch for her sweater. In doing so I realized she was twisting her stitches and had to correct her knitting. I thought it was funny that I was re-teaching the woman who taught me but she soon got the hang of it and was ready to cast-on for real on Sunday before Easter dinner. I hope she's actually working on it now that I'm back at my place. I told her that I want her to have at least one handknit item to wear at Rhinebeck this year. Maybe she'll listen...
 
I finished the Lady Eleanor wrap about a week or so ago and its gorgeous. I think I added too many additional rectangles but that just makes it more comfy. I really love it and so does Mom. I nearly left it at her house this weekend and I'm sure I would have never seen it again if I had. Other than that I have no other FOs and I'm just working on Mom's Mother's Day present so I can get it done and move on to the ribbed sweater in Mother-Daughter Knits. I have 900 yards of worsted Brair Rose yarn in this lovely pinky colorway that's just itchin to become that sweater...
 
I promise pictures next time. Thanks for stickin around (if anyone actually has).

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Monday, March 16, 2009

It does exist!

I always thought that Wollmeise was the knitter myth. That is didn't really exist because I've never seen it and I can never get my hands on any. Then my friend Jovi sent me a message saying that she managed to snag two skeins of it and one of them was for me!!! So I now have my very first Wollmeise. Its soft and beautiful and I just wants to fondle it all day and night. I love it!! Thank you Jovi!! 


Now I'm off to take care of Carl because he has a cold. I've been clorox wiping the house so I don't get sick too.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

New Techniques



My entrelac shawl is coming along swimmingly but I couldn't help but think that it would knit up faster if I didn't have to turn my work at the end of every row. So I went on youtube this morning and found the following video on knitting backwards.

Because you can't just watch one video on youtube I just found this. Is it weird that I think these are cool?






I always thought this was going to be a hard technique but its not! Its a little awkward but if I continue to use it as I work on this shawl I think I will perfect the technique! The shawl is getting way too big to keep turning it every 8 stitches...this is going to be a life saver.

I was going to dye yesterday but I was feeling rather uninspired so I decided to stay home and veg and I'm glad I did. Don't worry though I'll be back in the kitchen next weekend so there will be another update in March.


But then there's this. I love the EZ reference!



Ok I'm going to stop now. Have a good sunday.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Long Week

Its been a while since I posted and I apologize but this week has been super crazy. Sunday night I found out that my grandpa had a stroke. I spent most of the early part of the week worrying about that till I finally was able to go home and look at him to make sure he was ok. He's doing great and I'm very happy that it was just a mild stroke. Unfortunately, this scare made me behind in most of my work this week so the second half of the week was spent playing catch-up.
 
I managed to mail out the club orders on friday and I can't wait for everyone to get theirs, spin them up and post them on the rav group. Its a great group of women...I don't think there are many men but hopefully one or two will sign-up for the abbreviated memberships.
 
Yesterday I went with my good friend Ms. Choo Choo to CT for a knitting day with a lady she met through sock wars last year. I had a great time and met some really awesome knitters. There was one lady who was like a knitting god. She was a wealth of information, was super sweet, generous and was so friendly. She kept mentioning all these great design books and Ms. Choo Choo and I sat there trying to commit them to memory. I dont think we remembered any of them but maybe we can email someone who knows this lady and get a list. I did find out that there's a knitting store in Jupiter, FL which is where we will be spending a long weekend at the end of April with some friends (all boys) and there's also a minor leaguage baseball team. So the plan is to drop the boys off at a game tell them to drink as much as they want and then head to the store. Or maybe I can just leave them in the house was a couple 12 packs and tell them to go town and I'll be right back? Hmmm, I think I'll come up with a few more plans just in case.
 
I'm almost done with the second sweater I'm designing but the weather has been too warm to work with 100% baby alpaca so Ms. Choo Choo and I decided to cast-on the Lady Eleanor Shawl Thursday/Friday night so we could start working on it on Saturday at the little knitting gathering. I had been listening to old Stash and Burn episodes and they mentioned the pattern. I happened to buy a lot Noro Matsuri that day and decided I really wanted to make the shawl. I emailed Ms. Choo Choo that night to find out if she had the pattern and she was very excited to hear that I wanted to make the thing because she had it her queue forever. So we decided to do our own little KAL.
 
Carl was on vacation all week and got back last night so I spent the evening with him and we past out early. I woke up at 5 am (or 4 am depending on how you look at it since we fell forward last night) and just couldn't go back to sleep. I watched Friday's episode of Mistresses and knit till Carl woke up. We had breakfast and of course I then passed out on the couch till 12:30. I've spent the rest of the afternoon updating the shop. Now I think I'm going to settle into my knitting again and maybe watch the first season of The Tudors till Carl gets back from work.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

New Twist Collective

Check it out! 

Had a long weekend, I'll talk more in a bit I just have a few families things to take care of first. I hope you all had a good weekend.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Moment of weakness

After a long day in the office mailing out tax documents to WAY too many investors (YAY Tax Season!) I decided to stop by the knitting store in our lobby, Stitches East, to check out their 50% sale. The store has been there for about 20 years or something like that and now its going out of business. I was weakened by my long day and because of that I bought 10 skeins of Noro Matsuri and 4 skeins of Kureyon Sock. I think I'm going to make Lady Eleanor from the Matsuri. I just need to find someone who owns Scarf Style so I can borrow it. The Kureyon Sock will be added to my pile being used for the babette blanket


Now I'm off to work on the new sweater I'm designing! I'm using 100% alpaca and I think it's just growing and growing so I hope it looks ok when I'm done. Otherwise I'm going to have a very expensive and warm tent to wear in the winter.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Inspired to spin

I've been dyeing a lot of spinning fibers and talking about spinning fibers and talking about spinning a lot the last few weeks and one person in particular (you know who you are) has inspired me to pick up my spindle again and start spinning. I'm currently spinning up this gorgeous roving from Portland Fiber Gallery and Weaving Studio:


Its called Catherine Moreland and this was the description "Dyed in the tones of both the green and gold woods of Northanger Abbey and the blue waters of Bath, this roving will brighten up even the most gothic and frightening of projects! Dyed over a soft and silky merino/bamboo base, this roving weighs 6.9 ounces and should learn not to stay up late at night, reading racy novels!" as an Austen freak how could I resist?

It's spinning up beautifully. It reminds me of a young sapling or new spring plants burst their way through the warming earth. 

And I'm using this gorgeous Golding's Spindle that I bought in Rhinebeck this past fall. 

It cost me a nice chunk of change in comparison to my other spindles but after using it I have to say I would have paid even more. This is the best spindle I've ever used. Its spins like butter and I never have to fight with it. I love it. I want more. I can't recommend these spindles enough. OK now its back to the spinnning..."you spin me right round baby right round..."

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Wasted Sunday

I went home to dye yesterday but my order from my distributor didn't arrive till I had to be on the road to my Dad's. Carl came with me and we drove up to CT to see Dad. The plan was to stay the night at Dad's and then drive Carl back into the city so he could work and then I was going to come back to Mom's and do a marathon dyeing day. Good plan right? But alas, at 10:30 last night I started to get really sick by 10:45 I was praying to the porcelain god. And it continued till the morning. The hour and a half drive from Dad's to my apartment was the longest drive I've been on in a while. But I'm home and I'm spending my day watching a Rock of Love marathon and trying not to get sick again. 


BUT I finally gave Dad his sweater and he loved it. Ok back to lying down...I hate whoever gave this to me.


Thursday, February 19, 2009

A good week

I had my 100th sale yesterday afternoon, I finished my first ever design on Sunday, I started designing my second sweater and I figured out how to purchase a spinning wheel on layaway (no one tell Carl PLEASE)...its been a good week and its only Thursday!

I have to run out to dinner soon but I want to share my good week with you all and let you know that there are spots open in the Elements Fiber Club for the June, September and December mailings so if you missed the February 15th sign-up for the full club you can still get in on the action. Oh and I also setup a Ravelry group for the club. If you're not a part of the club, no worries you can still join and show your support for the shop and share pictures of your FOs and things like that!

I'm going to dye up a few things this weekend for the club, shop and the Phat Fiber Box in March. And I'm going to finally give Dad his sweater!! I can't wait to post the pictures of him wearing it. Its on a hanger right now in my closet and let me say my daddy is a BIG man. Next to Carl's clothes it look like a giant's sweater but Dad did try it on before I finished the collar and it fit him so I'm not worried. I hope Dad likes it!

I hope you're all having a great week too!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Update Complete

The shop has been updated and now I pass out...night night.

Sign-ups for Fiber Club End this Sunday!

Just a quick reminder that sign-ups for the Elements Fiber Club will close on Sunday, February 15th so head over to the shop and check it out! The more who sign up the more fun I can make this. I'm thinking a flickr group or maybe a ravelry group so you can all share your finished yarns with each other and maybe do some general conversating (yah made up word) about your love of fiber! So tell your friends and fellow fiber-whores!  It's going to be fun!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Because Jovi is Awesome

I met Jovi through my shop and she was kind enough to pimp me over on ravelry. She's the sweetest thing ever and a totaly fiber nut (sorry hun but you are). I thought, what better way to pay her back then to pimp her here on the blog. She spun this beautiful yarn from one of my rovings:

And she has many more in her shop dye by other indie dyers. If you love handspun yarns (frankly, who doesn't) head over and check out it. I'm telling you, you'll love it!

Yippie

The computer comes home for the hospital today! Oh I can't wait to have it back.
 
Just wanted to share my joy. I hope you're all having a wonderful hump day.

Monday, February 9, 2009

The Computer

Carl finally had enough the time to bring the computer to the fixer people at the end of the week last week. They took a look at it and the motherboard was all fucked up so that needed to be replaced and the power cord was shot so that needed to be replaced too. Together with parts and labor it was going to cost us $600. We decided to let them fix the computer since it cost us about $900 and we'd have to pay $300 more to replace it. Today I get an email from Carl informing me that the motherboard is fixed but the LCD screen is fucked up. It wasn't fucked up when we brought it in but apparently now its fucked up. Its going to cost another $300-500 to fix the LCD. So we're already in the hole $600 for problem #1 and now we have to decide whether we pay for the screen and spend nearly $1,100 on repairs or buy a new computer which would put us in the hole $1,500. We're opting for the $1,100 option. We still think the computer people fucked up the screen themselves because it worked fine before we shut it down and brought it in. But what can you do. I got to say, when Carl breaks something he REALLY breaks it.
 
Happy Monday!

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Busy day

I spent a lot of time dyeing yesterday and got a lot done. Unfortunately, I didn't get as much done as I would have liked. I still need to dye up the samples for the March Phat Fiber Box I hope to be able to dye them this coming weekend. I brought home a bunch of cones and 1/2 pound hanks to split up this week. Hopefully I will have enough time in the evenings to get them ready for dyeing this weekend.

I did try a new blend of sock yarn this weekend and I'm in LOVE with it. It's a blend of superwash BFL and nylon. It's super soft and it takes color beautifully! I think I might switch to it as my main base yarn for socks. It really is a dream to work with. I also tried out some alpaca/merino roving which was very nice to work with too. So there will be some very new items coming into the shop this coming week so keep an eye out.

A new little friend arrived yesterday and I'm super excited he's finally here!

He came from Gourmetchefff over on etsy and he's perfect! Her shop is currently empty but it looks like you can custom order softies from her so check her out. What I think is really funny is that he looks a lot like Carl! We laughed about that for a while last night while he tried to make the same face as the Doctor. Oh and if you don't know this is David Tennant as Doctor Who then you need to bone-up on your dork-culture.

Today will be filled with studying, knitting and a little Inspector Lynley Season 3. I need to finish the sweater from the design workshop so I can move on to some of the other designs that keep popping into my head. I think I'm going to have to buy a notebook soon so I can write down all these ideas for patterns! I have a hat pattern in mind right now that I think will be really cool. I just need to buy the yarns and swatch it up to see if I'm right or not. I guess my mojo really is back because I'm super inspired by my knitting at present.

Have a great Sunday! It's beautiful out!

Friday, February 6, 2009

How many Namaste bags can a knitter have?

Once again Namaste has produced a mouth-watering bag that I just have to have. The new Zuma is just plain awesome. I really want to the eggplant color (yes I totaly stole that picture but I love it!!) if I can find it. But this would be my third Namaste bag (and probably my 20th knitting bag) do I really need a third one, even if it is super pretty?

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

In the news

Look Ma' I'm famous!

I think its back!

My knitting mojo that is! I think the weeks of working (or avoiding working) on Dad's sweater sucked a lot of my knitting mojo out of me. It's been hard for me to knit since its completion. Then I went to The Point on Sunday for their SuperBowl Sale and I was inspired to knit again. I bought some gorgeous alpaca yarn that I plan on turning into my second sweater design. I also got some sock yarn because its like a yarn shopping prerequisite. I got home Sunday and started feverishly working on the jacket I was designing when I went to the design class with Stefanie Japel. I really want to finish it so I can a) show it off and b) move on to my next design. I hope to write up the jacket pattern and either sell it or give it away for free on ravelry. Once I'm done with the jacket I can move onto the alpaca sweater. I'm so excited you have no idea!
 
In other news, I received the best comment ever about the shop last night. I had a customer send me this: "I have one of your superwash merino rovings in sunset and i adore it- its one of the best merinos I've spun...I am sooo in love with your merino! it's crazy, i kinda hated merino before i spun yours. and i've spun some well known indie dyers, too." It made me smile. Sometimes I feel like I dye in a bubble. I spend hours letting my creative juices flow and then I post them in the shop for the whole world to see and critique. I'm always worried that people are going to hate what I do or think my products are inferior or something like that. And then someone sends me a message like that I just can't help be smile. They really brightens my whole day.
 
Oh and I have a random question for you, when did the handle-bar mustache become a decorating item/pop culture symbol? Seriously, go to etsy and search mustache and I bet you find over a 100 things with a mustache on it from jewelry to shirts. I don't mean to knock anyone's products I just don't know when or where this started. Seriously, where did it come from?

Monday, February 2, 2009

Happy February!!

Just a quick reminder that sign-ups for the Elements Fiber Club will close on February 15th so head over to the shop and check it out! The more who sign up the more fun I can make this. I'm thinking a flickr group or maybe a ravelry group so you can all share your finished yarns with each other and maybe do some general conversating (yah made up word) about your love of fiber!

Friday, January 30, 2009

I hate not having a laptop

Being without my laptop is starting to get on my nerves. I had to bring my sad little broken computer in to the IT guys at work to have them backup the hard drive before we ship it off to Toshiba to be fixed. Unfortunately this lack of a laptop is effecting my blogging and my shop updating. I've had a bunch of new additions for the shop just waiting to be uploaded but no access to any of my accounting files for the shop. I had IT send the files to me today and now I can add new listings so sometime this weekend new things will arrive.

Knitting...what am I knitting? Well I've been working on some doggie booties for a friend of mine's new puppy. I couldn't find a good pattern so I'm just kind of winging it. They're all knitted and felted but I have to try them on the puppy this weekend to see if they fit and to figure out how to do the closure around the ankles. I hope they turn out alright but I'd loved to offer up the pattern to anyone else who needs to warm their puppy's feetsies.

I'm also debating whether to purchase a drum carder or not. I really want an Ashford Two-Speed so I can start playing blended fiber batts. The cheapest one I can find is for $395. Does anyone know if someone out there has a used one they'd like to sell me for a bit cheaper? I love working with carded batts and would love to make my own but I can't justify the purchase at the moment so if you know anyone please leave a comment.

I have to get ready to see some friends I haven't seen in a bit so I will end this post. I'm debating whether or not to bring my knitting since we're just going to be sitting around watching movies. I guess I'll see what Carl thinks. Have a very happy Friday and pray for my poor computer.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Catch up time!

You're not going to hear a lot from me over the next few days/weeks. Monday night, my lovely and clutsy Carl tripped over over the power cord for the laptop which pulled the laptop to the ground. It landed on the connector between cord and computer and pushed the whole female connector inside the computer so basically my computer is fucked.

Anywho, I managed to study for my CFA exam some more, finish Dad's sweater (yippie!) and finish the felted bucket all on Monday. Of course I still have months worth of studying to do. I still have to clean Dad's sweater and give it to him. Hopefully that will happen before it gets too warm to wear the damn thing, AND I still need to felt the felted bucket. But all in all I think I had a rather productive day.

With all those projects out of the way I started working on the jacket I was designing in my class with Stefanie Japel. After working with all that natural raw wool for the felted bucket the malabrigo felt orgasmically soft. I can't stop knitting with it. Hopefully I can finish this jacket soon and maybe even write up the pattern in a way that others (not just me) can read.

Saturday will be a dyeing day so hopefully there will be new things in the shop. Unfortunately I have to figure out a way edit and post the new items in the shop but I'll cross that bridge when I come to it.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Trying to be good.

I think I've lost a bit of my knitting mojo. In order to get it back I'm spending today trying to clear out some of the WIPs that were almost done but I'm just being lazy about. Like Dad's sweater. I fixed the left side of the collar and the button holes are all done. Now I just need to finish the otherside of the shawl collar, seam in the collar and the button bands, sew-in all the ends and put on the buttons. Then all it will need is a little wash and dry and Dad will finally have his new sweater. Let's see how much I can get done today.

I also added some new rovings to the shop. I'm changing my acid dyes to a local dye company here in NYC. Aljo dyes are really lovely to work with and I think they give much richer color. 


Ok no more wasting time I've got to get back to the sweater...oh and I need to get on the Wii Fit. So much to do so little time.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

I had the weirdest dream last night

These little flying saucers came to earth to check out the planet and would kill anyone that moved. Carl, myself and some others figured out that we needed to stand still when they were around so we managed to survive a few "attacks" and eventually a small group of people were left. One day they came back and the planet started to shrink in on itself. The continents sort of became a super-Pangaea where all the cities of the world were crushed into one city. You would look out at the skyline and see things like the Empire State Building next to the Eiffel Tower. It was bizarre. Then we all felt this strange pull and were forced to move toward this giant clam thing that I swear was going to eat us all but didn't. This giant clam had some sort of freakish mind control thing and must have been the leader of the little space ship army. Somehow the giant clam communicates that we will no longer be humans and will be converted to some strange alien almost robotic like creature in a weeks time. Before we changed they had to weed out the bad humans so the clam sent some of the alien robot people (that looked just like humans but could download new skills and talents like a computer downloads a new program). Then we started to battle it out trying to find a way out of the clutches of the giant clam and the robotic alien people. It ended with me somehow getting in touch with people that were outside this strange world which was really weird and I have no explanation as to how that happened. And then I get "home" from some sort of giant clam sponsored retreat on how to be a good alien robot person and I'm being arrested for killing a granny alien robot (which I didn't do). I also find out that Carl has been turned into grass because the authorities thought that would make me confess to something. Then I woke up.

Seriously, one of the weirdest dreams I've had in a long time. Giant clam leaders...really?

I hope you all enjoyed this little trip into my crazy mind.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Experimenting Naturally

The new issue of Knit 1 has an article on natural dyeing by Shannon Okey. It inspired me to get in the kitchen and try some natural dyeing. She mentioned dyeing with blueberries and I happened to have a couple bags of frozen blueberries in the freezer AND the bodega up the street was have a sale on fresh blueberries (2 pints for $2!) so I bought a bunch and threw them in the pot. 

 
The blueberry dyeing was so successful that I decided to poke around the kitchen to find other things I could dye with. I found some paprika in the cupboard and thought I'd try it out. I think I used too much because some of the granules didn't dissolve but the color I got was great! It took a lot of rinsing to get all the extra paprika off the yarn and I couldn't get the smell out of my nose for a few hours. I didn't know what paprika smelled like before this and I never thought it was a really powerful smell but after hours of smelling it I was starting to feel sick. So I guess I won't be dyeing with paprika again anytime soon. But the color is really nice.


I love the colors I got and today I think I'm going to head to the grocery store to see what I else I can use to dye with. I have one more skein of superwash-bamboo blend sock yarn that I can dye and I'm thinking maybe some cranberries or cherries. They should give me a nice pinky-red color. We'll see what happens.


I was so inspired by the natural dyeing that I ordered The Art and Craft of Natural Dyeing: Traditional Recipes for Modern Use by J. N. Liles I can't wait for it to come so I can find out more about this dye process. If I get good at this I think you might be seeing more natural dyeing in the shop. Of course I still love my acid dyes so they won't be going away anytime soon. Now I'm off to do my Wii Fit for the day and  the grocery store. Happy Sunday!

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Quick Reminder

The Elements Fiber Club is ready for sign-ups.  Here are the details: 

4 or 8 ounces (your choice) of buttery superwash merino roving inspired by one the four elements will be shipped to you every three months for a full year of spinning goodness:

March - Air
June - Fire
September - Water
December - Earth

Sign ups will close on
February 15, 2009 to allow me time to dye up the orders.

I'm really exited about this little project so head over to the shop, sign up and enjoy! Otherwise have a very happy Saturday!

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Fiber Project 2009!

Since learning how to crochet a couple weeks back I've wanted to learn how to actually make something other than a dishcloth. So I decided that my project for 2009 will to complete the Babette Blanket.  And after a couple hours before work, some instruction from Little Ms. Choo Choo and some major focus this evening I think I managed to make my first square!!! 



OK its a shitty picture but my camera died right after I took this and I'm so happy I wanted to show you all this!!! I know its a little square but I think I did it right and if I didn't I think its almost right. I'm going to try to bang out another one and see what happens. Maybe Little Miss Choo Choo can teach me how to "work over the tails" tomorrow so I don't have a million ends to weave-in.

How's Dad's sweater? Don't ask, it will get done. 

Monday, January 5, 2009

Time for a little ramble...

It's been a while since I've just rambled on so here we go...

Today was my first day back at work and man was it weird. I've spent the last approximately two weeks either driving around the Tri-State area or alone with Carl in the woods. Its been nice. I've had a lot of time to just relax and enjoy life. I got to escape into some really good books. I got to play board games which I never get to do and I really love them. I could knit or spin whenever I wanted. I could play video games all day. Basically, I could unleash the dorky kid in me and just be free. It was fun. 

And mixed in with all that child-like fun I got to play house with Carl. I know we live together so what do I mean "play house"? Well we had a real kitchen with full-size appliances! We had a table!! God do I miss eating at a table!!! And I got to cook my wonderful man 3 meals a day for a week. It was great. The look on his face as he devoured his meals...priceless! 

Oh it was just a very simple weekend. There were no parents or authoritarians to yell at us or otherwise ruin our fun. Domesticity was still novel and enjoyable. It was just easy livin. Maybe that's why this vacation was the hardest one I've ever had to come back from. We got back to basics and it was nice. I really felt normal (whatever that is?) and it was wonderful. We didn't spend a lot of money and we really didn't do all that much. We just enjoyed being. If only every day could be like that.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Its good to be home!

We were on the road Christmas through last Sunday visiting family and eating and drinking WAY too much. By Sunday night we were all settled into our a little cabin in woods. As all my Northeastern readers know it was a very cold week and we were in a house with many windows and electric heat. We had a nice wood burning stove which was helpful BUT all our wood was wet so the logs would weep when we threw them on the fire. It wasn't perfect but it made us laugh. We spent the week reading, played board games and I did a little spinning. We cooked (read I cooked) 3 meals a day and just enjoyed each other's company. I did read one book in particular which was just amazing and I think you should all read. It's called The Bronze Horseman and its by Paulina Simons. I don't think she publishes in the States but you can order her books from Amazon. Anyway, she's an amazing writer and this story is just perfect. It's an epic romance and there were moments when I actually cried. Its so good you have to read it.

Me finishing book 1 of 3

mmm fire

I know you're all wondering is my father's cardigan done? I'm ashamed to say it isn't. I have to fix the button band and collar and I just don't have the energy to rip out the whole left side of the button band. I know its not a lot of work but I've had to rip back so many times already and I think this sweater and I need a little break from each other. I did give it to my Dad to try on on Christmas and it fits so that's good. The sleeves are a little long but he can roll them up. I hope to finish it this week and I hate that I'm slacking but I just can't look at it right now.

My brother loved his hat and couldn't stop talking about how wonderful it is!


I think he likes it!

The only thing that might keep me from finishing the sweater is...OUR NEW WII!! Yes, Carl got me (us) a Wii for Christmas and we're both very sore and we've already had one injury. I was bowling this morning and Carl was trying to put the computer down right behind me. I swung back to throw one AWESOME bowl and I smacked my hand right into the computer and now I have a HUGE blood blister on the tip of my middle finger which is making typing a little difficult but whatever, I'll live. I really like the boxing. Apparenly, I have a lot of anger inside and it all comes out when a punch those suckers! The only problem is that Carl thinks I look really funny while I'm boxing because I jump around and look silly. Now he wants to video it so I have to
 watch out before I'm the next You Tube sensation!


Carl testing out the Wii

Now I'm off to rest my weary muscles before going to the grocery store...anyone want to go for me?