Monday, July 30, 2007

Blogging Revisited

Okay, so I've been away from the blogging world for a while now. There are a couple of reasons for that, but I'm not going to bore any potential readers with minutiae. Suffice it to say, I'm back!

What's going on in my life right now? Well, I'm unemployed, again. They really should tell you before you go to law school that you're not guaranteed to get a job when you graduate. I'm giving it until the unemployment money runs out, and then I'll have to find something non-law related to pay the bills. On a more positive note, I'm engaged! So, I've got lots to do in the wedding planning department. The most stressful thing right now is trying to find a venue. I've got a fairly low budget for this area, and it's been a bit of a pain because I'm expecting less than 100 people, and most of the reception venues don't even want to deal with you at that amount. Plus, I'm rather picky in that I'd like it to have a Colonial New York or English countryside feel. Basically, I don't want mirrors all over the walls and disco balls.

I've been doing a lot of knitting, since I have all of this time on my hands. I'm participating in the Mystery Stole 3 knit along, and so far I'm loving the design. I'm planning on using this stole as a wedding accessory, even though the designer says it may not be an appropriate theme for a bride. I think it's beautiful, especially with the beads, although those don't show up all that well in the photos. I've just completed Clue 4 (out of a total of 7), and I decided to shorten it as per the designer's instructions. I wouldn't normally shorten, since I'm not petite at all, but I ran into a bit of a yarn dilemma. When I ordered from Elann
(Peruvian Baby Lace Merino), I stupidly only ordered one ball. I don't know why, because I knew the stole called for 800 yards and each ball has 600 yards. There's really no excuse, but I didn't notice until my package arrived and there was only one ball of yarn in it. I immediately fired up the Internet to order a second ball only to find that the "Parchment" color was sold out! Must be all those MS3ers. As of today, they still hadn't gotten any new supply in, so I went ahead with the shortening. I think it will work out okay, because I just let stoles hang from my arms rather than draping them completely around my shoulders.

I am very curious about what is happening with Clue 5. Melanie (the designer) had us put a lifeline in a very specific row, but hasn't said why. There was a cryptic message encouraging us to "trust her" and just follow the instructions when we get to Clue 5. So, it seems like there will be something a little different going on. In the last picture here, you can just barely make out my lifeline. It's followed by a few very interesting rows that seem to be a deviation from the previous patterning. Honestly, I have no clue what is going to happen, but I'm sure it will look lovely. If nothing else, this project has made me want to put beads on all of my knitting!

I've got a few other projects on the needles at the moment, since the MS3 can't keep me busy for an entire week between clues. I'm working on a felted tote (which may not be quite tote size because I may run out of yarn). This is only my second foray into felting, but I picked up the special Interweave issue on felting, and it has a lot of great info on how to work up swatches and such, so I decided to give it another go. The only problem is that it's a bit too humid to work on knitting bulky wool at this time of year. I'm also making a pair of socks for my fiance, mostly to shut him up about the stash that has overtaken my closet. And, my most ambitious project to date is my first foray into designing. But I'll go into that in detail in a later post.

Monday, June 26, 2006

Featured Etsy Items Now in Sidebar!

I haven't decided yet which I prefer. I'm still playing around with getting the java to work within posts, but I do like the way it's in a nice table over in the sidebar. I'm using Wists to choose and organize my picks, because it's a lot easier than manually cutting and pasting every item into a post. If I can get the java to work, I'll probably move it back into the posts because it's making my sidebar wonky. But until then, check back every so often for new picks.

Friday, June 23, 2006

Featured Etsy Items for June 23, 2006

Today's featured items are themed--handspun yarn! And none of it is mine!

A new focus

So, I've been busy. With knitting, yes, but also with trying to get my hobby business off the ground. I've opened up a shop on Etsy to sell my handspun yarn, beaded stitch markers, and other things that I make. It's called, naturally, RogueKnits. So far, I haven't sold much, but I'm concentrating on building up my inventory. Since I have a day job, it's taking a while.

Etsy is a great place for craftspeople. I have found so many wonderful things there that I'd love to buy. The Etsy administration chooses some featured items for the front page every day, but there's always talk in the forums of how those choices could be improved. I've decided, personally, to make my own featured picks every so often and post them here. It might be themed, it might just be things I stumbled across on a given day. But please, if you're interested in great handmade stuff, check out the sellers that I feature (and the other fabulous sellers on Etsy)!

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Sporty Stuff--join me and win something...

So, it's almost spring! And that means, March Madness and baseball season! I've got my brackets all picked for the office pool, and I actually did research this year (which is a minor miracle because I hate basketball). My hopes for winning any money are not high, but at least I have some vested interest when The Boyfriend insists on watching the games.

I also decided to start up a fantasy baseball league especially for us knitters who happen to love baseball. Anyone is welcome to join. The league homepage is here. Just in case that doesn't work for you, the name of the league is Knitters in the Outfield. The password (which you'll need to join) is additurbo. It's limited to 20 teams, so hurry and sign up! The knitter who's team comes out on top will win an as yet undetermined prize of some kind of fibery goodness provided by myself.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

I need to get some of these...

As a frequent mass transit rider (i.e., every single freakin' day), I am almost never without a book to read. Unless, of course, I'm listening to a book on my iPod and knitting. But I digress. Finally, a way to unnerve fellow passengers while engaging in my favorite train pasttime: Flapart. It's a series of book covers with amusing titles to put over the book you're actually reading. I'm thinking I should buy the "How to Impersonate an Engineer" cover for my nuclear (or, for Dubya fans nu-cu-ler) engineer boyfriend. For myself, I'm considering "How to Overcome Nymphomania". It's too bad they only come in hardcover size.

Friday, February 03, 2006

I'm a bad blogger...

Why can't I manage to update my blog on a semi-regular basis? It's not for lack of knitting content to discuss. Mostly, I'm just kind of lazy. Hrm. Anyway, I am now safely ensconced back in my cubicle with full-time access to the computer. So, I have less of an excuse than I did a month ago.

At the moment, the only project on the needles is a pair of Embossed Leaves socks from the Winter Interweave Knits. I love the pattern, but it's a bit limited in the sizing. Luckily, my feet are within the size parameters, but I'd have been upset if I had bigger or smaller feet and had to try and figure out the toe decreases from a different point in the pattern. I'm using KnitPicks merino sock yarn, which is sadly handwash only, but I think I can manage to keep these out of the washing machine. Here's a snapshot of the leg for the first sock:

And a close-up:

It's a little on the loose side in the foot, but I can live with it. The yarn is so soft, but I can see where it might wear through quickly. Such is the life of handknit socks, I suppose.

I've also been busily spinning. I finished another skein of Kool-Aid dyed handspun, which I'm calling "Green Fairy." It's up for sale in my Etsy shop. At the moment, I'm drying a skein that I'm actually planning to keep for myself. It's Corriedale that I bought at Rhinebeck, in colors ranging from orange to burgundy to purple. I'll try to get some pictures of it this weekend if the weather cooperates.

On the horizon, I've ordered the yarn and beads for Grumperina's Odessa hat in the latest Magknits. I went with Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino in wine, and I ordered two different colors of beads so that I can use whichever looks best with the yarn. This will be my first attempt at knitting with beads, so I'm pretty excited!

SP6 is now underway on the Knittyboard. My downstream SP and I have a lot in common, which makes buying things for her super easy. And I have a suspicion that my upstream SP may be a Brit!

Monday, January 09, 2006

I can explain everything...

Whew! It's been a while, huh? that...I can explain. You see, my blogging had, until recently, happened at work. I'd have long stretches of nothing much to do, which was perfect for uploading pictures and fiddling with HTML. But then the powers that be decided that our team should be working from a conference room instead of from our cubicles. That was back in November. And we're STILL in the blasted conference room. So, I really only get about 1.5 hours of internet time a day, and that time is consumed with emailing, checking a very select list of blogs, and online shopping. This is why I have been absent for so very long.

However, my absence does not mean I haven't been going crazy with fiber! I've been busy with the drop spindle. Lookie here:

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And...without flash (slightly blurrier, but truer color):

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I kool-aid dyed the roving myself before spinning and plying it. It's not really a color I'd use for anything, so it's going up for sale at my shop. I also made a skein of a blue and green colorway, but I haven't gotten around to taking pictures of that one yet.

All of the holiday knitting got done on time. The Boyfriend's parents liked their cigar gloves, which I annoyingly forgot to take a picture of before I packaged them up. My mom oohed and aahed over her socks. And, at the last minute, I decided to make a Noro Kureyon tea cozy for my grandmother to match the new teapot I got for her. I started that one three days before Christmas and finished it up at about 3 a.m. Christmas morning. And now, of course, I have to make one for my mother. Sigh...

Oh well, at least my family members appreciate the time and energy that goes into knitted gifts. Not that I'd dare knit anything for my brother. He's the most difficult to please person on earth, and he always gets gift certificates.

And no, I did not make any New Year's Resolutions. I don't do that, because it's an exercise in futility. Let's just say I'll try to be a more diligent blogger, but I'm not resolving to do anything!