Archive for the 'Forays into Other Fiber Arts' Category

Secrets and Obsessions


I finished a blanket!! And, by my deadline! (check out Rav for the details.)

I’d been wanting to make Babette (which is crocheted! ::gasp::) because it’s just so freaking pretty – and it reminded me of the blankets that my grandma used to have – but with a nice new modern feel. But I knew that if I made the blanket for myself, it would take years. Probably even longer than my log cabin did.

So I pitched the idea to my mom (the one with the mad crochet skillz) that we BOTH work on it and present it to my sister as a graduation present. She liked the idea and one awesome yarn-shopping-trip later, we were all set to go. I did crochet some of the squares, though my mom did more than her share. I had the awesome job of seaming, weaving in the ends and making the border. The fun stuff right?

It was worth it. My sister likes it, and as a friend said: It’ll be perfect for those movie nights.

Next up:


I started a new, mindless sock.  I lurve it.  The yarn came from a sock blank swap that we had over on Ravelry and the package totally made my day.

I know that I promised that I was going to design a sock and show you the whole project along the way… but there are a few things stopping me right now, only one of which is that I haven’t yet come up with a stitch pattern that I want to use.  The other thing?

I have an addiction.  An obsession really.

I’ve become a twilight fan.

Luckily, I only started the series 2 weeks ago so I haven’t had to wait that long for the final book to come out (tonight.  Midnight.  Eeek!) – but I’ve re-read all the three books and I can’t stop thinking about it.  I joined a Ravelry group and it’s more than 3/4 of my posts (out of the last 30 days) on Ravelry now.  At knitting night last night, I was yelled at more than once for checking out some of the latest posts on the topic.

As you can imagine, reading about 2,000 pages twice (and daydreaming about irresistible vampires) has seriously cut into the knitting time.

Anyway.  I was ashamed and hiding my addiction, but now I just don’t care – I fully acknowledge that I have an addiction.  Kalani reminded me that this is the first step.  This should all be over in a few days and then I’ll hopefully be back to my knitting self.

And Mom?  You still cannot read these books.  Edward is mine and I don’t want him in your head.  I’m just not comfortable with that. Really, I’m just trying to protect you from this terrible addiction.  Yea.  That’s it.  I’m just looking out for your best interest.


Introducing: BASKE


Hello Friends!

I wanted to introduce to you my latest design. I call it Baske. I was inspired by a gorgeous gold and white coverlet that I saw in a catalog. I kept staring at the pattern, knowing that there was a great knitting garment in it… when finally it came to me! A fleur de lis pattern!

And so… I present Baske… an awesome new mitten pattern that I hope you love as much as I do. Here’s a photo of the back and the tab thumb:


Elizabeth Zimmerman says that May is the perfect month for knitting winter mittens. When you finish them this time of year, they’re all set for you once the weather turns! Clearly she’s a genius because lately, I am all about the mittens!


The details:

Needles: US 3
Pattern: BASKE (By me!)
Yarn: Cascade 220 or similar weight yarn (I hand-dyed my gold)
Sizes: Available in Small, Medium and Large (7.75, 8.75, 10 inches)
Cost: $6.00
Available via:

Ravelry: or without: buy now

Anyway… Thank you all for being patient with the teasing posts. I hope it was worth it! I’ve worked really hard on this pattern and I’m really, really thrilled with the results. Each size has it’s own chart (you do not change size via gauge) and each size has been test knit.

Why I Love My Knitting Group

Knitting Group!

From left, me, Huan-Hua, Kalani, Leigh, Norma and Elli.

I was a little harsh on my knitting group in a few posts ago… I love them, I really do. My plan was to follow the post with one about my Sunrise Circle Cardigan (unblogged so far) and talk about how great their advice was… But I haven’t yet finished the cardigan and today we went to the Fiber Event (which sounds like geriatric hell) in Greencastle, Indiana, a few counties over from Bloomington. It was fun….
Mo Bunny Lovin

There was some animal fondling…

Is this locally grown and spun?

There was some questioning and learning…
All's haul...

And of course… the haul. (Don’t worry, that’s not all mine. Only the stuff on the bottom in the paper bag). We carpooled and thought we should get a shot of all the yarn. It was a lot. All the drunk kids who saw us photographing this probably thought we were photographing our collection of hard alcohol or something.

Here’s the stuff I got:

The Haul

The red stuff was WAY too cheap to pass up (1.20 an ounce)… and the blue stuff to the left of it was FREE with purchase. Absurd. The two pretty skeins in the middle are Briar Rose Fibers… I LOVE her stuff. I tried to resist (I even walked away), but resistance was futile. To left, I have a few small skeins of shetland that will become some stripy fair-isle mittens. The wooden piece is another random weird thing I can have in my apartment so people can ask me “what the hell is this??” (it’s a nostepinne for making center pull balls). I bought a small bag of fiber to make some fiber-covered soap and I also bought some new dye (that I can’t normally buy from Knitpicks). Not a bad haul… particularly because I spent less than 80$. Not bad.

Anyway.  I went to this “event” two years ago and it was fun… but not nearly as much fun as it was with these fine women.  It’s nice having a group of friends who aren’t associated with my job or school.


This is definitely the MOST bad-ass thing I’ve ever knit. Check it out:

Brea Angle

This was the first pattern in… the history of me knitting that was worth lining. If I was going to do this, I was going to do this right. And oh, how right it turned out! The knitting itself was pretty fun… the pattern grows in a real cool progression, so it’s a really fun knit. I had to re-knit the gusset (after going 1/2 way and realizing that the stitch count was supposed to increase a bit – oops!) and while it’s shorter than the pattern calls for, it’s perfectly functional. And check out the inside…

Brea Peak-A-Blue

I love it, love it, love it. I’m going out to dinner tonight and I cannot wait to bring this and get tons of compliments! You’ll notice that this bag has a nice inside… and a zipper…

Yea, I bought a sewing machine. I know, I know, kind of an expensive impulse buy – but I had some extra christmas money and its one of those things that a crafter should have… and it’s the reason why I haven’t done the steeking thing (which is the one remaining knitting technique I haven’t done – that I can think of anyway).

Brea Bag

I had some trouble with getting the sewing machine going. I kept getting the bobbin thread stuck. Luckily one of the RAs I work with has LOTS of experience with a sewing machine and since she owed me, she helped me out. I even sewed the zipper to the knit piece! I’m like a sewing fool now 🙂

I know you probably want some more details, but I wanted to give you another photo to drool at.

Brea Button

Pattern: Brea Bag a free pattern from Berroco
Designer: Norah Gaughan
Yarn: 2 hand dyed skeins of Lion Brand Lion Wool
Needles: US 7
Lining: An old skirt that I had from a few years ago
Strap: Thiefed from old Target handbag
Button: From the stash! yay for buttons!
Pattern Mods: The gusset was worked 1 stitch narrower and shorter than the pattern called for
Time: Cast-on Wednesday, Bind off and other finishing done by 4 am last night (yea, I know that was pretty late… I’ll pay for that later, I’m sure).

Want one more photo? OK!


Ok, ok, I’m back. (An Update Post)

Sheila left me this comment on my last post the other day…

OMG! Are you ever going to start blogging again? I miss seeing your knitting!

My mom has scolded me, as has Roni, my first secret pal and practically like my second mom. I feel so bad about not posting!

First, some explanations of why I’ve been gone so long.

As you might remember in my last post, August has been the month of transition for me. I’m no longer in NYC and I’m back in sunny Bloomington, where … the grass is brown.


It hasn’t rained any significant amount in the month I’ve been here and the grass is crying for some love. I keep seeing the students out smoking and I’m just waiting for a patch of grass to go up in flames. Fortunately, I bought a new umbrella (ella, ella ella – oh god- someone kill me) and some rainboots and so I’m ready for when the rain really does come. Hopefully it’s soon.

I’ve met with some new knitting friends! I got together a couple times with some knitters from Bloomington and we knitted! It was fun – like a real knitting group. I’d had some knitting circles in my dorm, but the girls were always really, really beginner – and had no knowledge of the online community – I was the most hard-core one, and that wasn’t really fun for me.


I’m making progress on the mitered square blanket. Unfortunately, the baby is a couple weeks old. I suck with deadlines (I should be writing a paper right now, actually). Nevertheless, I’ve hot 5 1/2 blocks (of 9) seamed together. I haven’t knit all the miters, however. As I discussed at my knitting group, once I finish that miter, I have to kick it into gear and finish the seaming (and weaving in ends). As long as I don’t finish that miter, the seaming I have done now… means that I’m ahead of the game. Yes, I’m lying to myself.


I also finished some slippers. I needed some that I could slip on and respond to fire alarms. Or run to the ambulance when a student is being transported for alcohol poisoning. I’m thinking of sewing some buttons on them – what are your thoughts? Same color tones or some that are bright? Also – I’m going to use silicone cauck stuff to seal the bottom (and make them not-slippery). I’ll throw some photos up when I finish them. Heck, I’ll make a tutorial out of it!  Anyway, as it is, I’m pretty happy with them.  They’re really warm and comfortable.  I may just wear them to class a few times.

Hmmm. I think that’s it for now.

Re-inventing the Stash

Ugly yarn from a swap (Before)

So I swapped some heavy cotton for this (and some other) sock yarn…. This stuff is Lorna’s Laces (not something I usually afford) -but the color… oh, the color. Soooo not my cup of tea!

So I decided to overdye it!

A good 2 glugs of vinegar, some hot water, a good bit of “Fire Red” Jaquard Acid dye and a few hours later, I have some much, much more attractive yarn (see below). I’m thinking of using it for this pattern. Because we all know how much I love Evelyn A Clark patterns!
dishcloths and new dye job 035


I had a post planned and mostly written about a recent (ok, it was 3 weeks ago, whatever!) trip to the Gee’s Bend Quilt exhibit at the Indianapolis Museum of Art. But now, I want to take a new direction in my writing, especially because of a recent shake-up in my life.

Everyone has something in their lives that comfort them. I’m not talking about parents or significant others (which may come and go), I’m talking about material goods which bring comfort.

At the Gee’s Bend exhibit, this quilt just struck me. I loved it’s aestetic, like I loved all the others, but the story behind the quilt stopped me in my tracks.

Missouri Pettway, 1902-1981. Blocks and strips work-clothes quilt, 1942, cotton, corduroy, cotton sacking material, 90 x 69 inches. Missouri’s daughter Arlonzia describes the quilt: “It was when Daddy died. I was about seventeen, eighteen. He stayed sick about eight months and passed on. Mama say, ‘I going to take his work clothes, shape them into a quilt to remember him, and cover up under it for love.’ She take his old pants legs and shirttails, take all the clothes he had, just enough to make that quilt, ahd I helped her tore them up. Bottom of the pants is narrow, top is wide, and she had me to cutting the top part out and to shape them up in even strips.”

I don’t even know what to write in response to that. The kind of love behind such a quilt… I felt honored to stand before it. I imagined this woman “covering up under it for love” during thunderstorms, difficult life crisese and feeling her husband near her through it all.

Now, I’m trying to find the things in my life that bring me comfort, because I need it right now. The obvious answer is knitting, but 2/3 of the time I’ve been knitting was when I was with my ex-boyfriend (ex as of Saturday evening) and the associations are strong. I knit more in my life with him than I knit without him. He was the one to whom I modeled my fair isle socks in pride. He was the one who was my foot model when I was knitting my dad some socks.

Don’t interpret that as me not knitting. I am. I picked up the Log Cabin Blanket again because even as I’m still knitting it, even though it’s not quite finished, I’m cuddling up under it for love. I’ve knitted 3 1/2 more strips, and, in honor of the Gee’s Bend Exhibit and doing what I want to do, I’ve introduced a new color, as you can see in the photo below. I only have to do 10 more strips total to reach my goal, but I may just keep going until I run out of yarn.

Even though the association of the Gee’s Bend quilts are also strong to my ex-boyfriend (we went to exhibit together, at least physically), I’m getting lots of comfort from the fact that this project was one of my summer projects, one that I knit as I grieved the loss of my grandmother. And she’d tell me to keep knitting. Just keep knitting. And forget that silly boy.

Holy Socks Batman!

Adjust your monitor! Make everything dark!

Put on your sunglasses!

Quick, make one of those eclipse viewing boxes!

Save your eyes! Squint if you must!

Do not look directly at the socks!

I warned you!!!!

Ok. Enough joking. But seriously. These socks are about as obnoxious as my sister is (just kidding Jennifer! I love you!). Which made them an appropriate gift, I think.

Pattern: I made it up. It’s a 72 stitch sock with 15 rows of ribbing before everything else.
Yarn: Knitpicks Bare in a colorway I dyed up a few months ago. (75% Superwash wool, 25% nylon) – used way less than one skein
Needles: US 1 (clover bamboo)
Size: She says they are a little big for her size 9 feet.  We’re going to pop them in the dryer for a bit and see what happens.
Time: I think I started the first one back in October. I finished the second sock in 2 days.
Notes: I hated this yarn. It didn’t feel right on the needles (It JUST occured to me that I should probably have tried other needles. Duh, Nicole!) and the color is SOOOO obnoxious.


Needle Felting. A Tutorial!


I’m sorry.  But I’m changing  blog locations.  Please click here to find the post you were looking for.

And please, excuse the mess when you get there!

How a college student dyes yarn.

I’m sorry. I moved blogs. You can find the post you’re looking for here.


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Stuff on the needles – to complete, sometime.

Christmas Gifts to Finish
Mom's Sweater (the body is done)

Socks in progress...
Grandma's Socks
Koigu Scruncher
Raindrop Lace

Lace Leaves Scarf from Scarf Style
The Behemoth Log Cabin
The Swallowtail Shawl
Stupid Ugly Mitten
Felted Clogs


June 2023

On my Ipod…Music and Audiobooks

Devil in White City heartlonely

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