Mim's Knitting Frenzy

Follow the dark and skeery path into the dank recesses of Miriam's mind. There you will find many a knitting needle and the occasional ominous crochet hook. Sinister looking book presses and towering stacks of paper. Where various handcrafts lurk waiting to pounce on the unsuspecting...

Location: Salt Lake City, Utah, United States

Tuesday, January 31, 2006

No time for a real post....

Hopefully tomorrow.

Monday, January 30, 2006

Quick Weekend Update In List Form

1. Didn't get the carpets cleaned, not too worried about it.
2. Got 3 books made and most of a 4th. Will probably have that one to post tomorrow. The other non-posted of the three is for Teri. See the 2 previous posts or the links in the sidebar for those books.
3. Got pictures taken and items posted on Curious Workmanship for sale.
4. Turned the heels and worked the gussets and got most of the feet done on my Autumn Leaf socks.
5. Watched a LOT of movies.
6. Refrained from strangling my live-in "house guest"
7. Took my daily vitamin and my Echinacea.
8. Made brownies
9. Ate brownies
10. Completely emptied out my bloglines feeds.
11. Did NO laundry
12. Did SOME dishes.

There, a dozen ought to do it.

Blue Wrap Journal For Sale

Please click all images for a clearer picture

Specs: 4.25" wide by 5.75" tall by .75" deep. 60 sheets or 120 pages if used front and back.

This book is bound in Iris rayon bookcloth. It's smooth and sturdy covering material makes for a long-lasting book, even with daily use. The endpapers are a beautifully detailed reproduction of a Renaissance Bertini Florentine print. A beautiful pewter colored button and cream colored satin ribbon create the wrap that keeps this book closed. The inner pages are a fine cream laid paper, perfect for ink or pencil.

The binding is a coptic stitch in waxed linen thread, which is great for journals, as it will lie completely flat or even fold around. This journal would be good for anyone to jot down thoughts at odd moments. It would also be good for a travel journal as once the wrap is done up, it will stay closed in a backpack or luggage and the pages won't be damaged.

Cost is $17 including first class shipping to contiguous US States (if you want Priority Mail, it will be extra).

PAYMENT INFO: I accept paypal. If you are interested in International shipping, I can do so, but it will cost you more (as I'm sure you're aware) and you should e-mail me and NOT pay by using the paypal button.

Leaf Imprint Journal For Sale

Please click all images for a clearer picture

Specs: 7.25" wide by 8.75" tall by .75" deep. 70 sheets or 140 pages if used front and back.

This book is bound with handmade illumination printed lokta paper. The paper is made in nepal and then overdyed using real leaves as a resist, so each impression of a leaf is unique. The beautiful paper is complimented by a semi-transparent black organza ribbon on the open edge to give a clean accent line.

The binding is a coptic stitch in waxed linen thread, which is great for journals, as it will lie completely flat or even fold around. This journal would be good for a nature lover. The pages are also large enough to accomodate easy sketching for the artist in your life.

Cost is $30 including first class shipping to contiguous US States (if you want Priority Mail, it will be extra).

PAYMENT INFO: I accept paypal. If you are interested in International shipping, I can do so, but it will cost you more (as I'm sure you're aware) and you should e-mail me and NOT pay by using the paypal button.

Friday, January 27, 2006

Bunny Suicides

I just can't NOT laugh when I look at this picture. This is the one Christmas present I didn't blog about. C gave me "The Book of Bunny Suicides" (which this one is from) and the sequal "Return of the Bunny Suicides". With a tagline like "Watership down for the deeply sick. Very imaginative, very funny, very worrying if you're the author's mother" how could you go wrong?

I carry them around in my bag and when I feel crappy, I pull them out and giggle. I have a morbid sense of humor.

Make sure you take the time to read though Chrissy's post about Copyright and Fair Use. She also makes good points about why pdf patterns SHOULD be more expensive than paper patterns. It's something we've been discussing in depth on the KnitDesign yahoo list. If you are so talented, why not make a button for this cause so we can start a blog campaign similar to the Bandwidth Theft campaign.

Have a lovely weekend. Mine will be filled with a lot of chores hopefully including steam cleaning my carpets and doing some laundry. I also need to make some more books, so look for those next week.


Thursday, January 26, 2006


Well hello there! I almost forgot about blogging today. I don't have a whole lot of interest to tell you about. Autumn Leaves socks are progressing, and I finished a quickie scarf for the Red Scarf Project. I've just got to block the one that I had made before and then I can drop them both off at Einstein Brothers.

Since I basically have nothing of interest, I'll share my "To Read" list with you. I've been carrying it around in my head and then I just decided to write it down today in my journally book, so that's what you get. They're not in the order I want to read them, just the order I thought to write them down in.

1- "Misquoting Jesus: The story behind who changed the bible and why" This is one of my very favorite subjects at the moment.

2- "Blink: the power of thinking without thinking" This book has been read by a lot of people, but it still sounds interesting to me.

3- "Reading Lolita In Tehran" I've heard it's very good... plus it sounds subversive ;)

4- "Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World" I love history and the way certain events and people change it, so this one sounds really exciting.

5- "Sailing the Wine-Dark Sea: Why the Greeks matter" Again with the love of history and world changing stuff. I love this whole 'Hinges of History' series. I've read all the others so far.

6- "Guns, Germs, and Steel: the fates of human societies" History, War, Science.... what better combination could you ask for in a book?!

And the books I'm reading right now are:
1- "Mary Thomas' Book of Knitting Patterns" The most detailed and comprehensive book on why knitted stitches & stitch patterns do what they do that I've EVER seen. It's amazing. I think my comprehension of knitting has doubled reading this book. Also interesting historical tidbits that I love.

2- "The History of Hand Knitting" An older version than the one that's linked, but so so interesting! Because of these 2 books I'm working on a new project. I'm very excited about that too. :)


Wednesday, January 25, 2006

The Whole 'Olympic' Thing

K, first off... I don't have TV, so I won't be watching the olympics. I didn't have it in 2004 when the olympics were in Salt Lake City either. I know, I suck.

My first thoughts when hearing about the "Olympic Knitalong":

1. What will I knit? (Notice no second thoughts here, just blind following)
2. I knit Rogue in like... a week and a half, so a sweater wouldn't be that challenging unless it was a smaller gauge.
3. I routinely knit full sized lace shawls in a week, so no there as well.
4. Maybe multiple items. How many socks could I knit in 16 days? How many would that be doubled?

My reasoning after a little thought:

1. *said to self* Why do you want to be a joiner? You know you carefully choose knitalongs because you know that if you feel pressured to knit a certain thing and there's no monetary incentive, you'll just want to rip the whole goddamned thing out by the end of the knitalong.
2. Don't be a sheep! Stop blindly following trends! Be the anti-trend!
3. It should be about the process. Don't let the competitive drive overwhelm that!

My final decisions about the Olympic stuff:

1. No joining. At all. As much as I love the idea of sitting back and drinking some alcoholic beverage and watching the games, I know I will want to knit. Plus there's the not-having-TV problem for the watching part. As much as I like the idea of knitting just for the process of knitting, I do that already on my own and I know if I join I will feel like a sheep just joining for the sake of joining and I don't want to do that.

2. My wrists have been needing tender care lately. I don't want to feel pressure in anyway over my knitting or my lack thereof. Even if that pressure if just within my own mind and not from any external source.

So I end up being the odd one out, but then again, haven't I always been?


Tuesday, January 24, 2006

More finished socks!

Hey everybody! Thanks for the encouraging comments in yesterday's post. It was bad. VERY VERY BAD, but things seem to be cooling down and working themselves out. Over the weekend I finished a pair of socks for my Nana.

Pattern: Adaptation of Child's First Sock in Shell Pattern from Nancy Bush's "Knitting Vintage Socks" I saw an adaptation for this pattern to larger yarn that Grumperina did and thought it looked really good at a larger gauge, so I gave it a try. I used 7 repeats around and sort of faked the rest. I also change the ribbing to k2p2 instead of k2p1 since the number of stitches I needed didn't divide evenly into 3's.
Yarn: Gjestal Superwash Sport I got from elann probably a year and a half ago. 100% superwash wool.
Needles: US Size 2 aluminum dpns.
Gauge: 7.5 spi
Verdict: They're good. I had a little trouble with the patterning because I didn't immediately realize that the patterning for the instep portion varies in stitch count based on what row you're on. So I thought I had messed it up and ripped back like... 4 times trying to figure out what went wrong. But the stitch count variation ended up being useful in the end. The stitch pattern makes for a VERY snug sock. It works for Nana since she has narrow feet, but if you're making this sock and have a wider foot, just make sure it will be comfortable before you finish them.

I also crochetted a special order bag that I forgot to take a pic of, but I started socks for me too.

These are the Leaf Socks from "Socks Socks Socks" I didn't realize it at first, but the leaf border around the top is knit separately and then attached. I'm going to try to figure out how to attach it as I go. Who wants a seam around the cuff of their socks!? The leaf panel is turning out very subtle. Kind of nice in such a brighly colored yarn. I was unsure if this would be a good pattern for the variegated yarn, but I really like it. You can see what it looks like on my leg here. I had to restart the left sock this morning since the directions are written so that there is a left and right sock with the leaf motif flowing down the outside of the foot. I think I'll call these Autumn Leaves socks. Oh yes.


Monday, January 23, 2006


Seems like my instinct of not wanting to go to work today was spot on. Shit has hit fans and I'm the person that no one wants to know right now. This morning has been full of tears and worry. And I seriously considered quitting my job until I realized that if I do that, I'll be living in a box on the street with C and my fast-dwindling yarn stash.

So instead of talking about it, or striving to say something disingenuous, here's a picture of my cute nephew Tanis. Click here to go to my flickr gallery where there are more cute pictures. Normal knit blogging should resume tomorrow, unless I've bashed my head in by smacking it on my desk one too many times.


Friday, January 20, 2006

Tagged again

... this time by both Tracey and Teri. If you wanna skip the meme scroll down to the normal(ish) updates.

4 Jobs You Have Had In Your Life:
Photo lab processor/cashier/janitor
Library Cataloging Assistant
Graduate Admissions Secretary/Webmaster

4 movies you could watch over and over
Pride and Prejudice
Office Space
Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead

4 Places You Have Lived:
Layton, Utah
Granada Hills, California
Roosevelt, Utah
Logan, Utah

4 TV Shows You Love To Watch: (don't have TV so not alot)
Lost (we download the episodes and watch them on the computer)

4 Places You Have Been On Vacation:
San Diego, California
Morgantown, West Virginia
San Francisco, California
Orange County, California
(all California locales were to visit family)

4 Websites You Visit Daily:
Bloglines (and the blogs associated with it)

4 Of Your Favorite Foods:
Sour Cream and Onion Potato Chips
Buttery Microwave Popcorn

4 Places You Would Rather Be Right Now:
At home
San Diego with my Grandma
Borders sipping tea and knitting in a comfy chair

4 Bloggers You Are Tagging:
I don't like to tag people, so if you want it, gank it.

Hey! Thanks for all the wonderful comments yesterday. I think I've responded to all of them. You guys never fail to make me feel loved. It's amazing that so much concern and love can flow through the words of strangers.

I've been knitting, but I'll just show you when I'm done. Should be today or tomorrow, so probably I'll post Monday about it. For now since I'm so backed up with bloggable news, this will be a longish post (as if it isn't already!).

As you may have read over at Norma's that we worked out a trade. She got a book and I got yarn! Note: The images seem to look grainy on my monitor until I click on them and then they're crystal clear. Is this happening to anyone else?

Lorna's Lace's Shepard Sock (I think) in the color "Gold Hill". All I have to say is Mmmmmmmmmm Some of the colors are pretty bright for my taste, but I'm withholding judgement until I knit it up. I feel pretty certain that it will mellow down then.

I also traded Isela this...

(the mini version of Icarus that I sent to IK) for this...

A skein of Brown Opal sock yarn and a small spindle. YAY! I've been wanting to try some more spinning, but all I had was a 7oz behemoth of a spindle. Too damn heavy to do anything worthwhile with. So this morning I spun. It seems to be averaging a sock weight yarn. Right now my spinning goal is to spin 4 oz of 2 ply lace weight so that I can knit a shawl with my handspun. Looks like I've got a ways to go before that's possible, but goals are good, right?

And like Isela, I've been challenged to get my license (finally!) so I've been driving a little bit. On Thursday C took me up Logan Canyon. I drove on SNOWY ROADS people! CURVY snowy roads! When we got to a really bad part and it started snowing harder, I pulled over and let C drive back home, but while we were stopped I was taking a pic of the snowy mountains and we spotted this doe! On the drive back we saw 5 deer cross in front of us too. I love Utah!


Thursday, January 19, 2006

B is for...


I've been making books for a long time. I started when I was a kid with scratch paper folded in half and sewn to a construction paper cover with yarn scraps. I used to write "stories" in them when I thought I would grow up to be an author. In 4th grade I authored and illustrated a pop up book telling a story about a magic pen found by a little boy. When he drew things with it they came to life. Aliens then came back to claim the pen they had accidentally left on earth. The aliens had bulbous fingers. I remember meticulously working on that book, so focused that I missed a few instructions given by my teacher and got a subpar grade on it.

In 5th grade I used to write serial mystery stories. I still have some in a filing box and perhaps I will reproduce some here just for kicks. I used to collect my papers and bind them in little sewn booklets.

After 5th grade, I stopped writing and stopped making books. I had convinced myself that I sucked at being a writer and therefore left it all behind.

But in High School I wanted to make a book to hold my poetry. I was the epitome of teenaged angst in High School. I wore black, I blatantly disregarded teacher's instructions and knit through classes. I got good grades, but didn't feel challenged or cared for, so I wrote poetry. Some of it is pretty good. Others only hold merit to me. But they were cathartic and they deserved a special place, so I made a book for them, which promptly fell apart. So I made another one better.

My researching ways had manifested early, and after the first book fell apart, I started researching better ways to make books. I began to look at books in the library and pictures online of handmade books. I saw the braided spine of a coptic binding (which you can see in the photo above), and figured out a way to do it. Not the best way by any means. It was contrived with toothpicks, thread and beeswax and a crochet hook. Really complicated.

And then I discovered Keith Smith's books. A careful study of his books can make almost anyone a competent bookbinder. By this time I was in college, working as a Library Cataloging Assistant in my Uni's Special Collections. This has been my favorite job by far. I got to talk to the preservationist everyday. I had great resources at my fingertips in the books we had in our collections, and infinite inspiration. And he even gave me scraps of Davey board and bookcloth. I began collecting paper and finding the best sources online to buy my supplies.

If I weren't so damned terrified of the GRE's (and not really wanting to go back to school), I would take them and apply for Grad School at University of Texas, Austin for their Preservations Administration degree. When people ask me what my dream job would be, I say "to preserve ancient celtic texts in Ireland". It is something I dearly love and take great pride in.

I have goals of becoming more of a book artist and less of just a book maker, putting words and images together to make beautiful pieces, but everytime I think of it, I get butterflies in my stomach and start the adrenaline pumping. I still fight those feelings of inadequacy everyday and with every book I make.

Despite making all these journals, I don't keep one myself with regularity. I have almost convinced myself that my words aren't worthy of being written down on anything that I would feel bad disposing of, so I make blank books and sell them or give them as gifts, so I can indulge the love of books, but not make myself vulnerable by putting my words in them.


Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Weekend of FO's

Hey there! I hope all you Americans had a nice long weekend. I did... aside from the hormonal explosion at least.

But I got lots of knitting stuff accomplished. Behold, my first entry to the 200Sox knitalong (which I joined, by the way).

Pattern: My own, using the vine lace charts from the sock in Socks Socks Socks. I'll be putting together a pattern for it and posting it for free soon, but I've got a bunch of things to finish first.
Yarn: KnitPicks Essential (75% Superwash Wool/25% Nylon) in Grass.
Needles: US Size 1 bamboo dpns.
Gauge: 9 spi and 11.5 rpi in St st.
Verdict: Fabulous! Although the vine lace is a little tricky and hard to read, they turned out beautifully. I didn't think I would like knitting with the color at first, but then I fell in love with it. Now I want some for myself ;)

I also finished C's clogs. Here they are pre-felting with my head for scale.

And here they are finished, and fitting him perfectly.

Pattern: Fiber Trends felted clog pattern.
Yarn: Plymouth Galway Highland Heather 100% Wool in color 710 for soles and cuff and 704 for body of foot.
Needles: US Size 13 24" bamboo circular for knitting and Size 11 24" bamboo circ for picking up stitches.
Gauge: Uh... not sure... it got felted so it didn't really matter.
Verdict: It was so much fun knitting these huge monstrous shoes! I've never felted anything to size like that before, so that was fun too. I kept pulling them out dripping wet to hold against C's foot to make sure they'd fit. I recommend felting them to be a little smaller than fitting, so they will stretch to fit instead of getting floppy. I'll be sewing some leather soles to the bottom so they don't slip.

I also made Portugese sweetbread with my sister this weekend. We had planned to do it Thanksgiving weekend, but didn't have time, and then planned to do it around Christmas or New Years, but then there was the funeral and the sickness. But we finally did it. We also took the time to cut down the recipe to make one loaf at a time (the bread takes about 12 hours to make, so we like to do alot at once most of the time).

In strange news, I am the 3rd hit on google for "Crafty Bitches". And #4 for "inserting things objects uterus fun pictures". Strange indeed.

Um... I think that's it for today. I'll have my ABCalong post tomorrow. And in case you missed it, I posted a couple more books for sale. Either scroll down, or links are in the sidbar.


Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Small Pocket Journal for Sale

Specs: 3" wide by 4.5" tall and .75" deep. 60 sheets or 120 pages if used front and back.

This small book is the perfect size to be tucked into a purse to jot down notes, or to keep telephone numbers and addresses handy in. This book is covered in a thick Acid Free Marbled Paper in greens and blues with touches of browns, reds and yellows. The inner pages are a blank, cream colored, fine laid paper with a slight texture to it. The binding is a coptic stitch in waxed linen thread, which is great for journals, as it will lie completely flat or even fold around, making it perfect for a quick note or a mini-sized novel. It could be kept by the bed to take notes on dreams upon waking, or it could house a running list of movies you'd like to see, or books you'd like to read.

Cost is $15 including first class shipping to contiguous US States (if you want Priority Mail, it will be extra).

PAYMENT INFO: I accept paypal. If you are interested in International shipping, I can do so, but it will cost you more (as I'm sure you're aware) and you should e-mail me and NOT pay by using the paypal button.

Marbled Journal for sale

Specs: 7.25" wide by 8.75" tall by .75" deep. 60 sheets or 120 pages if used front and back.

This book is half bound with Rayon Cialux bookcloth on the spine edge and a thick Acid Free Milli Fleur Marbled Paper on the rest, for a classic style. The end papers compliment the myriad colors in the marbled paper well. The inner pages are blank. The binding is a coptic stitch in waxed linen thread, which is great for journals, as it will lie completely flat or even fold around. This would be a lovely journal for a writer or someone who loved classical literature. The pages are also large enough to accomodate easy sketching for the artist in your life.

The coptic stitching on the binding has been carefully placed to add extra interest to an otherwise simple book. In this image of the book, you can get an idea of the braided texture of a coptic binding. This makes it very sturdy in addition to being very beautiful.

Cost is $32 including first class shipping to contiguous US States (if you want Priority Mail, it will be extra).

PAYMENT INFO: I accept paypal. If you are interested in International shipping, I can do so, but it will cost you more (as I'm sure you're aware) and you should e-mail me and NOT pay by using the paypal button.

Friday, January 13, 2006

A Few Words

First off... this is just too bizarre to ignore... honestly, it goes beyond crazy to SciFi. *blinks* Strange...

A friend Mary (who blogs privately on LJ) linked to this post. Read it, I'll wait. It's totally worth reading.

Mary said:
I often wonder why religion causes such huge debate, and yes, even hatred among peoples when, in my mind, everyone is really just doing the same thing. Searching for meaning. Searching for truth. Trying to become closer to the divine. In my mind, all religions are ultimately the same, because at their heart they are just alternate ways of finding the same truth. As long as people search and struggle for the divine, why does it matter whether they do it as a jew or a christian or a muslim?

And I don't think I could say it any better. In our individual searches for truth and divinity, what does it matter if we choose to believe in a Goddess or Jesus Christ; a congregation or an individual worship. Everyone always says that we need to not get lost in the details and miss the big picture. But what about the REALLY big picture? In the end, we're all just squabbling over the details. And although it may seem to be a big thing if your deity's embodiment is male or female, or even just an etherial search for divine truth, it really doesn't matter.

This may offend (so if it is, go ahead and send hatemail. I've got a folder for it), but I'm always astounded by the dichotomy of most religions that preach acceptance and brotherly love and tolerance (I have issues with that word, but that will have to wait for another day), but have no problem shunning people, or seeing people not of their religion as somehow less, or when they feel the need to tell other people they're going to hell because they don't pray a certain way. Is it pride that makes human beings so unable to see that perhaps their answer isn't right? Why do we feel that we have to have absolute answers before we can believe in things? When we state our beliefs, why can't we qualify it with "This is how I feel right now, based on my experiences. It very likely may change in the future." Why does our faith have to be universal for everyone? That only leads to division and hatred. It leads to people being ejected from their families and communities. People who could teach us something of value being ostercized from our societies. What happened to "By their fruits ye shall know them." Just because we can't take the time to see the bigger picture that we're all searching for meaning and truth? All the argument seems silly when you see the forest through the trees. Can't we be strong in our faith, and be happy for others being strong in theirs instead of seeing them as a threat?

Just take some time to think about it. It just may change the world.


Thursday, January 12, 2006


Happy Half Nekkid Thursday! Today you get my nekkid hair :)

The actual length is about the bottom of my shoulderblades, so because I'm turned it looks longer than it actually is. But as long as it used to be, you wouldn't even be able to see the bottom of it in the picture. It was bloody LONG! So yeah... there it is. Much lighter and much easier to deal with.

Socks are progressing slowly... I hope to get them done this weekend. Three day weekend, YAY!!!!

So, have you ever seen people who you can't tell what gender they are? Like, you're sure they're one or the other... but you just can't tell no matter how hard you look? I call them ma'am-sirs. You don't know whether to say "Ma'am" or "Sir" when you address them. So there's this ma'am-sir on the bus in the mornings. And it was driving me crazy today that I couldn't tell. Usually you can tell by clothing or facial structure at first glance, but this person dresses completely androgenously! And in a big puffy coat I couldn't tell if breasts were present. I think he/she caught me looking. How embarassing! Do you know anybody like that? Am I the only one driven to craziness by it?


Wednesday, January 11, 2006

No progress to note

I've got basically no progress on the socks... one gusset is done, and the other is almost done, but it's hard to see and there's no sun, so crappy pics wouldn't do them justice. The clogs that I've basically not blogged about are stalled until I get up to Yarn Today to get more gray yarn, but I think I'll wait until tomorrow and just go to Night in Knots there and get it then. Isela, will you be driving through town making it possible for me to hitch a ride?

Tracey asked about working both socks at once, if I work one row on one and then switch, or work it in chunks. I answered her in an e-mail but thought somebody else might have the same question, so here's the answer:

I work it in chunks. Usually 1-2" chunks, but like for heels or toes, I work the whole heel or the whole toe, or the whole gusset. The advantage of doing both socks at once for me is that if I'm making up the pattern to fit someone specific, or just not using a previously written pattern, I don't have to take notes. I can just knit one sock until it's right and then knit the other the same to that point. I like it because there's no pattern-toting, and then they're VERY unique because I probably couldn't duplicate the pair exactly even if I wanted to. Kind of knitting dangerously ;)

Thanks for all the nice comments on my hair. Tomorrow I'll post pics of my hair cut for HNT, so you can all see it in all it's wavy shiny glory ;)


Tuesday, January 10, 2006

In the form of a list

1- Beth has finished an Adamas shawl! Check it out! Yay Beth!

2- I love trading stuff! I worked out a trade with Norma. A book for some sock yarn. Woot!

3- My sister cut my hair last night... now it's down to the bottoms of my shoulder blades instead of the top of my bum. It's WAAY lighter and so my neck doesn't hurt as much when I pull it back. I have REALLY thick hair. My tightly braided hair and my wrist are about the same thickness.

4- Geri's socks are going swimmingly. I had a minor road bump when the second sock's heel was wigging out, but for some reason still unexplained I ended up with 34 stitches for that heel instead of 36 like I had on the other one. Everything else is the same... it's just 2 sts short, but it doesn't matter becuase the heels came out with the same number of sts after turning anyway... so they basically match and they'll be fine. Here's the progress.

The heels are both turned and I've begun the gussets. I haven't worked on these as much as I would have liked to because a million other things have gotten in the way. They will probably need blocking though (my first socks to do so). See the lumpiness?

The lace pattern just puckers a bit right now. I think a wee wash and pat will do it wonders.

5- Work is agrivating me, so we shall not speak of it, m'kay? All I will say is that working for a state-funded University sucks ass.

6- I am proud that I've only cursed once in this post. It required a boatload of restraint.

Monday, January 09, 2006

Prize winner!

Thanks everyone for playing along with the naming contest. I had a lot of fun reading all the entries. Some of them were quite creative! I have to say that there was a clear winner though. In my mind and C's as well. When we read it, we both thought it was perfect. And the winner is:

Carole with "Mimiquin"

And what does Carole win? A handmade book! It's more of a purse or pocket journal. It's about 5.5" tall and just over 4" wide, with LOTS of pages! Click for larger pics.

I was trying something new for me that was actually inspired by the cover of AlterKnits. I looked at it and said "Hey! I could do something like that!" And I did :) I'll be experimenting with other edges in the future... and probably alot of other cool stuff. I'm working on an idea for a patchworked cover. Hard to describe, but it should be cool.

Knitting is progressing well... I'd take a pic, but I want to get this posted before I got to lunch, so I won't bother. Hopefully tomorrow. Geri's socks are both at the heel (I typed hell at first... wonder if I'm getting frustrated with how slowly the heel flap is working up on Size 1's). And I started a pair of Fiber Trends felted clogs for C this weekend. The 1's on the socks were just too much to handle all weekend long, since my shoulder was tight and not cooperative. Feeling a bit better today... probably from the 1.5 hour long massage C gave me last night. Bless you, you wonderful wonderful man!


p.s. Carole send me your address!!!

Thursday, January 05, 2006


I've been tagged by Carrie K for a meme(memememmemememememe.... what?)

List 5 weird things about yourself, tag five other people to do the same, and then comment on their blogs that they have been tagged. I'll try to pick things that I haven't already mentioned in one of my "I'm crazy" rants.
1. My older brother peed on my head when I was about 5. He also made my younger brother eat dog food.
2. I have a deep and abiding love for Simon and Garfunkel. Yes, I know how much that clashes with my deep and abiding love for NIN.
3. I love getting in a hot shower or a hot bath and getting all steamed up and then scraping dead skin off of my body and face. It's not the feeling afterward that I love so much as seeing the gunk that comes off... Like Biore pore strips. I LOVE those things! I love seeing all that nasty stuff that was lurking in my pores and knowing that I triumphed over it.
4. I HATE kitten and puppy calendars. For GOD'S SAKE! If you like kittens or puppies, have pictures of your OWN kittens or puppies. Not a calendar of random pets with froofoo bows around their necks. Blech.
5. I secretly hate every picture of myself, although I'm getting better and I don't quite DESPISE them all now, but I still don't like them very much.

And for Jen and La... since they guilted me into it, here's my Avatar. I think the scarriest bit is the Corgi in the raincoat... *shudder*


I love you guys!

Dear Blog Reader,

I cannot tell you of my love for you! You would run screaming, I tell you! But I love you with such a wonderous joy that I am willing to spend hours trying to find lovely things to show you. Sorry for just posting selling posts lately... trying to clean some stuff out and also trying to get some bills paid that otherwise are just going to have to wait. In addition to the last 2 posts, I've put links to those books in my sidebar under "Books To Buy" near the top there.

I am glad to say that Icarus is finished and winging it's way to Interweave as we speak. I'm soooo nervous about seeing it in print! But I sent it UPS instead of USPS, so I'm not nervous about it getting there.

I HAVE been knitting, but I couldn't show you because it was Icarus. But now that that's done, here is my current WIP.

I'm loving my new camera! Look at that detail! These are socks for my supervisor Geri. The yarn is Knit Picks Essential in Grass. It's nice and sturdy, but not too harsh. Good for everyday socks, I think. Anyway... thanks for all your lovely comments and all your well wishes with the sickness. I'm feeling much better than before. Still getting random coughing fits where I can't breathe, but they're getting fewer, so that's good.

Back to work!

Book for Sale 2

Specs: 5.75" wide by 8.75" tall by .75" deep. 60 sheets or 120 pages if used front and back.

This book is half bound with Rayon Cialux bookcloth on the spine edge and a sturdy italian print Sunflower paper on the rest. The creamy inner pages match the background of the Sunflower paper nicely. The inner pages are blank. The binding is a coptic stitch in waxed linen thread, which is great for journals, as it will lie completely flat or even fold around. This would be a sturdy and servicable journal for someone who liked to tote it around in a bag or take it camping, or traveling, etc...

The sunflower on the front cover and the smaller one on the inside of the front cover have been hand colored. The colors are hard to capture in an image. I'm very proud of it.

Cost is $30 including shipping to contiguous US States.

PAYMENT INFO: I accept paypal, and you can use the button at the bottom for that. If you are interested in International shipping, I can do so, but it will cost you more (as I'm sure you're aware) and you should e-mail me and NOT pay by using the paypal button.

*EDIT* The buttons aren't working.... I'm not sure why... so if you want to buy a book, e-mail me specifying which one, and include your address. I will send you the info to pay me with paypal.


Book for Sale

Specs: 5.25" wide by 8.75" tall by .75" deep. 60 sheets or 120 pages if used front and back.

This book is covered in a Japanese paper called kikka bijutsushi. The flower design is irridescent and it looks almost hallographic. The flower designs show up white, while the paper around them is actually a very pale green. It's quite beautiful paper. There is a 3" square window cut out of the front so that a picture could be placed or drawn on the front page of the book and it will show through the window. The paper inside is fine white laid paper. The pages are blank. There is a satin ribbon bookmark with glass and metal bead detail on the end. The binding is a coptic stitch in waxed linen thread, which is great for journals, as it will lie completely flat or even fold around.

Cost is $25 including shipping to contiguous US States.

PAYMENT INFO: I accept paypal, and you can use the button at the bottom for that. If you are interested in International shipping, I can do so, but it will cost you more (as I'm sure you're aware) and you should e-mail me and NOT pay by using the paypal button.

*EDIT* The buttons aren't working.... I'm not sure why... so if you want to buy a book, e-mail me specifying which one, and include your address. I will send you the info to pay me with paypal.


Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Seraphim Shawl Ready to Buy!

Seraphim is a very simple, yet elegant design that makes one think of feathered wings - hence the name ;) If using fingering weight yarn, the solid stockinette upper portion gives a warmth not found in most lace shawls. It would be perfect to throw over a t-shirt in a drafty room, or could spice up a plain black dress for an evening out. The stockinette upper slowly fades into the lace edging for a subtle effect.

This versitile design is worked from the top down. Techniques used include knit, purl, yarn over (yo), knit 2 together (k2tog), slip slip knit (ssk), sl1-k2tog-psso, and a centered double decrease. The lace patterning is in chart form, so ability to read charts would be needed. The charts are the size of legal paper for easy viewing - if printing out the pattern, legal sized paper will be needed to avoid splitting the charts.


Yarn: About 7 oz. of fingering weight yarn. It could also be done in laceweight as long as the gauge was right. I estimate if you used laceweight, you'd need less than 100 grams.
Needles: US Size 5 24" circulars
Notions: 4 stitch markers, and a row counter would be handy.
Gauge: 5 - 5.5 spi


For $6 (USD), you will receive a downloadable .pdf file that contains detailed images, clear instructions, and color charts to allow you to knit this shawl. As with all my patterns, I offer full technical support, just an e-mail away. Secure payment requires a PayPal account. If you do not have a PayPal account, you can sign up for one here. To purchase this pattern, just click on the button below and follow the instructions. Once your payment has gone through, you will receive an e-mail with instructions for download.
Please go to my new shop to purchase this pattern

pdf file updated 6/27/2006

"A" is for....

... Apple Blossoms

This is a picture of a 3.5 x 5" print of a picture I took with B/W film on my 35 mm camera. I love it so much it's on my wall at work. The quality is a little off because it's not an original, but I plan on someday printing a larger print and framing it and hanging it on my wall at home. This ABC-along is going to be fun! Thanks Anne!

So hi, I'm back in the swing of things and feeling much better. Still coughing like a maniac sometimes, but good otherwise. So here's the Christmas report as well. You all know about the early Digital Camera present. My little brother, Daniel gave me some Russian yarn purchased in Ukraine.

It's wool, and quite nice. There's 5 100 gram skeins ... not sure what to do with it. Suggestions, anyone? And here's the other big one.

I love when family all goes in together and gets you one REALLY good present! This will make designing knitting and sewn garments so much better! I think she needs a name though... in fact, yes, she does. So here's a contest!
Contest Rules:

1- Entries will be accepted in the comments or by e-mail until 12:00 midnight MST on Sunday, January 8th.
2- The winner will be my favorite of the entries. If I don't like any of them, I'll assign numbers and use a random number generator.
3- Prize will be determined at a later date. Could be a journal, could be yarn and a pattern... something. It will be nice though. And a package will probably include homemade jam of some sort. :)
4- Make 'em creative people. Funny is good, boring is not-so-good. I don't want to name my dressform "Becky" or something like that.

Happy naming!

Sunday, January 01, 2006

Happy New Year

As tonight is still Hannukah, here's my recipe for latkes, from my fabulous caterer Aunt with the same name as my mother, Claudia.


4 medium potatoes, peeled
1 medium onion
2 eggs
3/4 Cup matzah meal or a roughly 50/50 mixture of all-purpose flour and corn meal.
Salt and Black Pepper to taste
Vegetable oil for frying

In wide low pan, heat about an inch of oil. Grate potatoes & onions (a food processor is a great way to go). Add eggs flour or meal & salt and pepper. Mix well. The oil is hot enough when a drop of water flicked into it spits back. Spoon the latkes out in clumps into the hot oil, smooshing them a bit with the back of the spoon to make them flat. Fry until golden brown, making sure to flip them and brown both sides.

Serve with applesauce or sour cream.

*note* The number of latkes this recipe renders depends on the size of latkes you make. We usually end up grating like.... 25 potatoes, and then making everything else up as we go, but this is the basic proportions. We have a big family that eats alot of latkes.

Happy New Year! Some bloggers have resolved against resolutions... but I guess I've never seen resolutions as they're generally thought to be. I see the turn of the new year as a good time to reflect on where you were last year and where you want to head in the future. It sort of forces you to think about it, when you might have been ignoring it for a good long time otherwise. So I set goals for the new year and I consciously work toward them whenever I can. Here are the areas I'm working on:

Knitting: Last year, I decided I wanted to design more and be published. This year, I want to keep a better knitting design notebook. I have an idea floating in my head for a knitting book. I know everyone and their pet hamster's cousin is publishing a knitting book these days, but this would be more of an "Art and Knitting" book. Hard to describe, and I don't want to jeapordize my chances by talking about it too much. But I will need to keep a much more meticulous notebook for this to be feasible.

In this vein, I also want to design more sweaters. Garments with multiple sizes instead of just a one-size-fits-all approach. I will continue to design lace, so no worries for those craving more shawls. Designing lace shawls is my love, and I won't give that up, but I need to branch out. To help facilitate this sweater design process, I've been looking for old pattern drafting books. I have a really great one that I've actually used to draft my own clothing, but I want some more. Ones with a bit more innovation. If you've got any ideas or recommendations, I'd love to hear them.

The situation for both of these goals seems to be right. For the book project, I need a better digital camera (which my parents gave C and me for Christmas), and for the designing stuff, my whole family went in and bought me a dressmaking form. YAY!

Self Betterment: I have self esteem issues. Yes, I will readily admit that. I know why I have them, and the effect they have on my life, and things are getting better all the time in that department. But when I'm sick or really tired, the monster still takes over and I allow myself to get depressed. I have dealt with depression for years and finally learned to be myself and love myself this last year. In some ways, it's probably setting a goal of publishing designs and making it happen that's been key in that transformation. But this year I will focus on those weak times. I will not allow myself to loose focus when I'm sick and start to tear myself apart.

Web Presence: I'm working on finding a new site where I can sell patterns, and in the new year, I will be offering more books for sale (2 that will be posted perhaps later today, or maybe Tuesday, whenever I can get to a computer that will read my digital image card). And hopefully I'll have the Seraphim pattern up for purchase later in the week. I've signed up with payloadz.com, so the whole process should be much MUCH faster. It will allow buyers to pay through paypal and then they will receive an e-mail with the download code or something and then be able to get it almost instantly. No more waiting for me to check my e-mail. I'm also working on a site design and hopefully I'll be able to get that up in the near future.

There are goals in other areas such as finance, etc... but I won't be posting those here because some people I don't like very much read this blog occasionally, and I don't really want to give them any kind of advantage if I don't have to.

Thanks everyone for the healthy wishes. I'm doing better although I'm still coughing and pretty weak, but hopefully I'll be good to go to work on Tuesday. Happy birthday Cara! And Happy New Year to you all!