Thursday, December 22, 2005

Christmas is finished

Gnomes came in the night and felted my slippers! They're grandmother-sized now:
My family was quite impressed when I came up from the laundry room holding these. "Those were the giant socks?" Yes. "Really?" Yes. Now I need to paint some treads on them so she doesn't skate herself into a broken hip on the kitchen floor.

Also, last night I learned a new skill. After years of fighting it, I took my first baby steps last night on the path to learning to sew. Amazing! I think I could get a hang of it, now that the pain of the first time I tried to learn (and subsequently sewed my finger) is fading. I made a stocking for Dan which currently hangs next to mine on the mantle, and I finished Bonny's bag:

The chenille does not want to be photographed. The bag does not look like fuzzy ketchup barf, unless that barf came out of Bettie Page at a calendar shoot. Here's the lining, lumpily constructed but 100% machine and hand-sewn by me:

And that concludes the Christmas crafting. I actually finished most of the projects that I intended to. I am short a hat for dad and wristwarmers for mom, but as I said to Dan last night, those will happen once I've gotten a few things out of the way for me. Happy holidays!

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Christmas gifts are almost done

And this is the completed hat for my grandmother, complete with earflaps and pompoms:
Mike brought Shannon over and we made more candles last night. We finished up the cranberry scent (the white one) and then made some rust-colored candles with the scent "head shop", or as we called it, "dirty hippie". The really dark ones are kind of weird (that's what I get for leaving Mike alone with the dye!), but the lighter ones are kind of Pier1 fugly cute:

The fuzzyfeet are complete. I conquered Kitchener stitch to sew the toe, and I think I can actually do it without the book now! The gnomes are soaps given to me and Dan for Christmas from friends:
And because they're so cute, these little guys have become my moment of zen:

This grad school thing will pan out one way or another! Keep your head up! Things will look better by the light of day! Your life is not a race or a competiton! Also, be good! and nice!

Thanks, guys.

Monday, December 19, 2005

I turned a heel!

Behold! Something is going right in my life! The graduate school applications don't look like they're going to be sent (because I still have no letters of reference), but hey, I can make a heel on a slipper! Things are going to be okay!

Saturday, December 17, 2005

Jon Spencer Christmas Gift Explosion!

I've been a busy, busy beaver:
This hat is MY OWN DESIGN. Pattern to follow. I made it to go with the Aunt Purl magic scarf (and yes I know the join is showing):
This is the cowl for mom, way less impressive smooshed flat:
This is all the yarn left over from Cheryl's bag (five skeins my ass... Meema's Felted Marsupial Tote of Overestimation, more like). It will become fuzzyfeet for my Gramma Mae, and maybe my dad, too:
This is the beginning of the Chinese Charm Bag from Stitch 'n' Bitch for Bonny. I used Lion Brand Chenille Thich 'n' Quick on size 11 needles and cast on according to gauge. I liked the reverse stockinette in this yarn so I added a stripe. It's very soft, and I'll use this yarn again.

And yes, that is leopard print canvas:
And I made candles with my friend Mike. They're cinnamon (and then I stayed up till 5 with Dan and made some cranberry scented ones, too).

I'll elaborate later. Dan and I are going to Hastings!

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

What project is that? They all look the same

Or so says Dan. I love him, and I know that he's trying, but he thought the dreaded navy yarn was black for the first week or so I was knitting with it. There has been some progress, thank Jeebus, in the form of a cowl for mom:
The edging is a spiral rib pattern I cribbed from Last Minute knitted Gifts, because I still intend to (someday) make her the book's wristwarmers to go with this. The stockinette stitch is my favorite mindless thing to be doing while Dan plays Final Fantasy Tactics on the PS2. The inch and a half of ribbing at the bottom gave me terrible hand cramps, and I've already been scolded for knitting "too much" (a such thing?). Knitting in the round is amazing- I can see why it liberated Elizabeth Zimmerman. I find that when knitting flat I am driven to inspect my work at the end of each row, and my flat projects take longer for that reason (among others, I'm sure). The scarf is done:

I've got a hat in the works to match the pattern. In the round. And I think I'm going to give the two-circular thing a try because I'm too cheap to buy the needles becessary to knit the top of the hat. We'll see.

Last night, after some craftiness on Dan's part, our little friend heretofore known as Little Fucker, earned the name Worthy Adversary:

That damned mouse has been making me crazy for a week, and Dan finally got his spaghetti-jar-and-peanut-butter(-and-BRIE) trap to work last night. I think that WA is giving me some kind of sign in this picture. He was scuttling around in the jar, and then suddenly stopped right in front of the camera lens and put up his paw. Maybe he's giving me the finger.

We let him go into a pile of leaves a couple blocks away. Good luck, Little Fucker!

Wednesday, December 7, 2005

So I lied about the Boobholder. Again.

I. hate. finishing. Which explains the ends hanging out in most of my photos, and the general lack of blocking that makes my knitting look like it just woke up after a bender only to discover it has no idea where it has been or why it is wearing no clothes. Case in point:

Branching Out has got a terminal case of The Wrinkles. That's what I get for using acrylic. The pattern was so easy, though, that I'll definitely make it again. On either side are the hat and scarf for Pippa (please to forgive the lousy color/contrast). At least I won't have that Supersaver in the stash anymore. Huzzah!

And here's the beginning of the Irony scarf, named because I find it ironic that I'm knitting a scarf for my grandmother, who does not knit:

There has been no progress on the finishing of The Boobholder. Those sleeves will just have to stay unsewed until I get through the holiday knitting gauntlet. That way I won't be tempted to knit a bunch of things for myself.

That's what I keep telling myself.

Tuesday, December 6, 2005

More knitting than posting

So, who wants to see pictures of Cheryl's Christmas present?

Well, tough. Here they are anyway:

This is the before picture, with the pattern book as a handy reference. The handles were disturbingly floppy, and the whole thing had a tendency to stretch out. I was a little concerned. It was surprisingly soft to my tender skin (hence the itchy in itchy stitchy), and I think that I could maybe wear a hat made out of the stuff. G-d bless you, Merino sheep!

It took about ten minutes to turn into this:

The handles are still a little floppier than I'd want for my own use and the bag got a lot more shallow than I wanted or expected, but my mother thinks that it's just gorgeous. I don't know about the colors, which is why I picked them- I think they're right up Cheryl's alley but I feel no covetous urge to keep the bag.

The Pippanator's hat and scarf are done (ends darned and everything!), but there's not enough light at the moment to take a good picture. I've started a scarf for the Grammies hat/scarf combo in a dumbed-down basketweave pattern (I don't want to have to think about this one). My mother gave me six skeins of Woolease in a navy tweed from Value Village and drecreed that all shall have winter accessories for Christmas. Sure thing, I thought, as I won't keep navy yarn (ick), and I don't have to pay for anything (ah, so many broke-ass Christmases now). How many winter accessories can I squeeze out of this yarn? Here's what I'm hoping:

  • Scarf and hat for Grammies, in basketweave pattern and with earflaps (as per her request)
  • "I just want a hat for Christmas" hat for dad
  • A cowl and wristwarmers for mom because she already has a brazilian hats and scarves and gloves
  • and as many other things that I can squeeze out because I don't need navy tweed with primary color flecks taking up room in the yarn box
Tracy, you'll notice you're not on the list because I know you feel the same way I do about navy tweed Woolease. Expect something cool for the holiday, but maybe not something handmade.

In other news, I hatehatehate this graduate school application process and the subesquent tracking-down-old-profs-to-get-letters-of-recommendation game that includes such choice moments as having to explain that no, I haven't done much with myself since college except wait tables and work on a couple shows, and no, I'm not sure what I want to do but I'm applying to (good) schools less than four hours away because as soon as Dan and I get married the forecast calls for scattered chance of babies, and I'm sure as hell not risking that without mom nearby to bail me out of my infant ineptitude.

...Stay tuned next time for the exciting conclusion of The Boobholder!

Monday, November 28, 2005

I smell like a wet sheep

My first felting project is done! I have pictures, too, and I will post them once I get off the treadmill tonight. Other completed projects of note include Branching Out and a scarf for Pippa (a matching hat is on the needles right now).

I got a little farther on the Boobholder, but I'm going to rip out the body stitches because my increases look funky (I am so happy I left in the lifeline!). I'll finish that this week. Promise.

Friday, November 18, 2005

Too cold for a short-sleeved shrug

I haven't made any more progress on the Boobholder because I've been noodling around with winter accessories- the weather has taken a chillward turn in the last few days. The melon-holders that were too big for Nicole were replaced with an actual gift hat. I wish I had a picture, but I put it together in two hours and immediately took it over to her for her birthday. I used the Hot Head pattern from Stitch n Bitch in some spare hot pink Homespun (I think it was called Coral Gables) but it was too floppy on size 10.5 needles, so I switched out to size 8 and tried again. I did 25 rows instead of 29 because I thought I was running out of yarn (I wasn't), so it was a tad short for my personal tastes. To add a touch of length, I crocheted a lace edge with some black Super Saver, picking up and sc for each bound-off stitch, and then sc and ch 4, skipping every other sc from the previous round. It made a loopy lace that looked great in contrast to the ribbing. The hat was super stretchy and would fit all different head sizes. The fabric was really plush and dense, too. I'm definitely going to make myself one, a little longer and maybe in a different color (and I'll bet I would get at least two hats or a hat/scarf from one skein).

I've also started Branching Out from Knitty. I had to learn 4 new decreases and how to yarn over to do this, and it's coming out great on some light teal TLC on size 9 needles. I sew a lifeline in every repeat because I already had to start over once (and I hate starting over) but I think lace knitting is going to be my favorite varitey of knitting! Pictures as soon as there's light tomorrow.

Saturday, November 12, 2005

I've forgotten it before

I don't want this to slip my mind again, but I really, really must make a case for my digital camera. Something fuzzy and protective out of a yarn that won't scratch the screen.

That is all.

Friday, November 11, 2005

Photos at last

Here's a little something I like to call "No Boobs, All Shoulders":

As you can see, the left sleeve is done, the right sleeve is almost there, but I have yet to join the body. Who knows what this is going to look like, though. I've never worn poofy sleeves.

In the meantime, I finally finished this:

Dan insisted that it reach past his knees, and damnit, it does.

Then there's this melon holder, which is too big for me (and thus the intended recipient) but it seems to fit Dan:

I just wrapped up another one in black with a cuff, and it seems to fit better. I don't know if Nicole will like it, but here's to hoping.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

No pictures yet but a flurry of activity and bullet points

My camera makes me mad. I need to get it to communicate with my new desktop, but it's not working. Yet. I have been knitting, I swear! I put the Boobholder on hold for a moment to work on some other stuff:

  • a ribbed scarf for Dan made of crappy Red Heart acrylic (which will take a tumble with some fabric softener) which was the first project I cast on and got tossed aside when I decided I more urgently needed a crappy knit bikini (the top fits great, but I lost the bottoms while swimming to the amusement of my friends)
  • a series of hats for Nicole's birthday- the first one, made of Woolease worsted according to the devil hat pattern in Stitch n Bitch, was waaaay to big, so I cast on 7 fewer stitches and tried again with some black Red Heart (still too big I think but it's not off the needles yet)
I also need to form some kind of queue to organize the growing pile of intended projects like:
  • Lelah in Bernat Cottontots
  • the Hurry Up Spring Armwarmers from Stitch n Bitch Nation, despite my severe allergy to wool
  • the Mobile Monsters, too- one for my phone and one for my mp3 player (for this and the armwarmers, I bought the recommended yarn!)
  • the Loopy Velez cowl from Stitch n Bitch in Takhi tweed in an olive color (I have five of those and 1 skein of a wine color)
  • and eventually one of each from Knitty
I want to make a bunch of Christmas gifts, but every time I knit or crochet something, I want to keep it for myself. I think I should start making things in pairs.

Monday, October 31, 2005

I think I've hit the halfway point

My boobholder may not have any room for boobs yet, but it's almost ready to separate into sleeves and body. I will have an update picture in the next day or so. It's taking shape very nicely, and I think that I will never knit a sweater that isn't in the round and in one piece. I love it!

I will probably have some knitting time tomorrow because, unfortunately, Dan's Uncle Andy died over the weekend and we're heading to Mt. Pleasant tomorrow for the funeral (two and a half hours in the car, although I'll be doing a fair bit of the driving, I suspect). He was not in good health but it's still a bit of a shock. Dan wasn't particularly close to him, and I only met him once, but he was Dan's father's brother, and I think that losing a link to his father could affect Dan more than he realizes, especially after he acted when his grandmother died in July. I worked on the afghan at her memorial service, and everyone told me how much she loved to knit and crochet, but that she wasn't able to do it anymore. I have resolved to learn how to knit with broomsticks in the dark so that I'll still be able to knit when I'm blind and arthritic. And why the hell not?

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Now that it's over, I've got more knitting time

I promised myself that for good or ill, I would not talk about my GRE scores with anyone but my parents and Dan. I. would. not.

And I won't... but I will say that when I came out of the testing room, the proctor looked at me and said, "Huh. I haven't seen a score like that, and I've been here almost seven years."

He also made fun of me when I came in because I a.) insisted on wearing my (newly knitted) scarf into the testing room despite the... tropical climate and b.) asked where the bathroom was when I was facing the sign and standing not six inches from it. And I signed in where I was supposed to sign out. Twice.

Mind was elsewhere, I guess.

Scores went to Michigan State, Northwestern, UC Berkeley, and Stanford.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Something old, something new

Since I began this blog, I've actually managed to finish a small project in order to make way for more complicated things. Behold the Parteee scarf, made with $5 worth of novelty yarn from the dollar bins at Target:

It's fuzzy and stretchy and posed on my new-to-me treadmill that will surely be used for running and not just displaying new knits. The scarf is two yarns held together and knit in garter stitch (20 sts cast on size 13 needles) until I ran out of the fur.

Now that I have my fun scarf, I can start on something I've been wanting to do for such a long time with this beautiful, discontinued (nooo!) Plymouth Turino silk:

These beautiful teal balls are well on their way to becoming the gorgeous Boobholder from Here's a progress shot, on Dan's Go board:

Dan taught me how to play Go yesterday, and although I'm not so hot at it right now, I think it will be more interesting in the long run than the damn XBox. In exchange, I taught him how to cast on and knit (at his behest):

It's full of holes, but his tension is getting more and more even. We're gonna be a knittin' family!

Friday, October 21, 2005


I think I've almost got the formatting right- how exciting! Livejournal was getting me down and I needed a fresh start. Tada- knitting journal!

My Life in Pictures
Veronica M's items Go to Veronica M's photostream

About Me

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I love language. I love knitting. I love photography. I love my husband. I love my daughter. I love my puppies. Reach me at vmachak at gmail dot com.

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She Has Arrived

Vivienne Beatrix

June 20, 2008
12:00 pm
7 pounds, 15 ounces
20.25 inches


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