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February 2007 Archives

February 7, 2007

Back in the saddle again

I've been humming since yesterday morning... Whew – I survived breaking my blog. It looked dicey for a few days there, but thanks to a rescue from my patient and smart blog hostess, I’m back in business and I can blather on and on some more. Funny how, before I had the blog, I had gazillions of things to say, and now I have it and find myself speechless a lot of the time – same thing during my blog break. Tons of silly things to talk about, and now that it’s back, nothing. Brain empty.

Good thing I’m working on keeping track better, and I now have two notebooks where I can jot down my brilliant ideas on the spot – the official Notebook of Spinning will now share pages with blog notes, and I have a little “I’m becoming my mother” notepad in my purse. If I don’t write things down – they’re gone daddy gone, and there’s no way of knowing when or if they’ll ever come back around. I send myself lots of emails to remind myself to do things when I get home. I forget a caller’s name as soon as they tell me where they’re from. It’s a big step to write these things down – whether I actually go back and use them remains to be seen. I have a voice recorder that I thought would be the perfect solution to carry around, but then I never listened to the “notes” I recorded – just kept carrying the thing around.

Have you read Susan Gordon Lydon? The Knitting Sutra, Knitting Heaven and Earth, Take the Long Way Home? Knitting Heaven and Earth jumped off the LYS shelf for me one evening, and when I hit the web the next morning, I learned she had just passed away that week. I think she’s amazing, and a darned great writer. I don’t know how to describe her, except that she spoke to me, through me, and with me in all these books – remarkable. I’ve got my own cobbled together spirituality so it was fascinating to read about her journey, and the amazing part fiber played in it for her, and for me too. I wish I could call her up to talk.

Besides the blog, I’ve apparently gotten my fiber mojo back. I was really struggling after the holidays – perhaps a reaction to having to go to work and use space in my brain for something other than what I might play with next. The cable swatches were fighting with me and I was making stoooopid mistakes ( I think I started one in a bad mood – it had bad juju), and I couldn’t commit to a next project. The spinning wheel wasn’t even calling to me, even after I fiddled with the yummy brown wool that I think is cormo cross from the VA Fiber Fest last fall.

But it’s all coming back now – whew again. Cable swatches going along swimmingly once again. I actually did a test ply with the bit of brown wool – and decided that, while it’s lovely as two-ply, I want a three-ply. It’s escaping me now but I recently read a witty blogger’s discussion about why three-ply looks more like commercial or “real” yarn and I want to try it. I’m hoping to spin enough to knit the man a cabled, buttoned vest. His request.

February 8, 2007

Will she make it?


Tune in tomorrow for the final installment of the epic silk hankie adventure....

February 9, 2007

Yes she will!

silk clappy

I can't decide if you should bow down to my yarn estimation powers or rub me to try to catch some of my dumb luck! (The man didn't tell me it was poorly draped - but it's a daylight shot AFTER work today!) This is how much was left:


I don’t think there are many more joyful things than wearing something I made – something that I dyed, stretched, spun AND knit is like heaven – I’m wearing my silk my Clappy as I type and I couldn’t be happier. Okay, maybe if someone opened me up a yarn shop I’d be happier, but you know what I mean. To recap: this is 4oz of silk hankies from the Yarn Tree. I dyed them last summer with Kool Aid – my first fiber dye job ever.* I began stretching those 4oz of silk hankies on New Years eve, and continued stretching through the next weekend when I also started spinning. After a tangled setback, I managed to get about 410 yards of 4-ply from those hankies that never seemed to end. The end result, another Clapotis (an all-time perfect pattern) is, amazingly, just what I pictured when I started the whole adventure – slubby, funky, pink-y, useful – fantastic! I knit it on size 5 Denises - good stuff.

It did occur to me, however, after I sought help from a chiropractor yesterday for my weird shoulder, that it was indeed stretching those hankies that torqued my right side. If you’re going to stretch hankies, do it with great care, take lots of breaks, and stretch a lot. Not that I mind a trip to the chiro – I could get very, very addicted to having my neck cracked. I spent 13 minutes on an aqua massage table too – wonder how I could get one of them for my house. I finally made the call yesterday after doing some neck rolls and hearing fantastic crunching sounds in one direction – ouch. A box containing my new PowerBall gyro arm & wrist excerciser and my GripMaster also arrived today - I'll be the knitter hulking out of her handknits someday soon!

Mind you, I'm NOT complaining about the silk, or my shoulder, or any of it - it's all been well, well worth the learning, the blood, sweat and tears, the celebration dances along the way, and a finished product I'm in love with. I will, someday, even spin more silk hankies, especially seeing as I bought a couple more ounces before I knew what I was in for! No, really - next time will be better, faster, smoother - bionic for sure!


These tulips were from the girls at work for my birthday and match my silk perfectly. Pink has taken over in my life in the last few years. As the anti-twin, I spent most of my life vowing never, ever to wear pink because it was (is?) twinnie’s fave. I wore black and red, she wore pink and pastels. I had Snoopy notebooks, she had Holly Hobby. Now I just can’t get enough pink. It didn’t even sneak up on me – just one day, out of the blue, I HAD to have a pink sweater. And I now have more pink sweaters, and pink earrings, and a wire bracelet with pink beads I knit, and this silk, and I don’t see stopping. What is it about pink? I’m not talking Pepto Bismol pink, but all the other amazing corals and magentas and poppy colors. And yes, I still quote Pretty in Pink on a regular basis – Molly Ringwald saying “I can do lots of things” is a standard.

Next epic – the pound of brown cormo cross from the VA Fiber Festival. I’m slowly filling my first bobbin with what will be my three-ply yarn. Though the merino/tencel waiting for me in the cupboard is pretty appealing too. Must order more bobbins. I'm still goo-goo eyed over the infinite possibilities I have ahead in the world of fiber - the fun never stops, and I can plan on learning and doing different things forever!

*I was known for almost 20 years for my tie-dyed baby shower gifts – I did gazillions of onsies, but finally retired after my little sis had her daughter 3+ years ago. My fingers refuse to play with those little rubber bands ever again. But I certainly will enjoy them again, as I plan to torture the grown recipients of all of those onsies with photos of them wearing my tie dye - preferably right around when they start dating. (This is just one of the many reasons I shouldn't be a parent!)

February 15, 2007

Out of sorts

Discombobulated - I finished the shrug part of my second attempt at Tubey last night, and even though the sleeves still looked a tad large, they were smaller than the first time, so I picked up for the body anyway. I've been so disappointed in how my sweaters fit that I'm turning a corner and not being willing to put up with just okay, so I stop and check fit more often. So I checked - put all of those body stitches on a piece of scrap yarn and tried it on. Not even CLOSE. Now, I know I didn't get the recommended gauge, but I did the freakin' maths and knew what to do to sub my yarn when I started my second attempt. I did those maths on the first page of the pattern I printed, and your guess will be just as good as mine as to where that's gone. It's probably hanging out with the marked up pattern for the gorgeous fair isle gloves I'm supposed to be finishing for Fair Isle February. Yes, I could do the maths again, but that would certainly cause my feeble brain to explode since I've ALREADY DONE THE stupid maths. The sleeves currently make me look like a big pink gorilla, and the neckline is just indescribably bad. I really, really want to finish a sweater before Knitapalooza IV beginson March 16th.

I think it's the absence of the silk. It's the same empty feeling I get when I've just finished a really, really good book and there's nothing else in the queue. I've been noodling around with a bunch of different little things and I've found nothing particularly satisfying. I did finally fill one bobbin with the brown wool - now just have to spin two more. Seems like I've barely made a dent in this pound of wool. I'd show you a photo but it's been cloudy for days and my flash photos aren't worth posting....

Send me some good fiber vibes - gotta get my knit back on!

This just in - I ate the bad peanut butter for dinner last night. Just saw on the Today show that yes - I got some of the stuff being recalled for potential salmonella problems. I guess if I start doing the Linda Blair I'll know I got it. Supposedly takes up to 24 hours to hit - wheeeeeee.

February 19, 2007

February is for...

Finishing things:

Modesitt Lace Corset

This is Annie Modesitt's Ribbed Lace Corset that I started oh, in February of 2006. It's been forgotten in the pile since I bought the cute little buttons. Only I didn't buy enough buttons, because, in my typical boneheaded way, I set out for them without checking how many buttons I might actually need. So of course I came home four buttons short, and I'm just too lazy to go all the way back to where they came from. I even bought different buttons when I passed close by a fabric shop last spring, but I didn't like them, so it sat some more. Until my LYS owner asked if she could put it up to try to sell the Roma that she just wasn't moving. Jaeger Roma - lovely stuff, soft, good stitch definition. I fiddled with it again last night, and after sewing up the buttonholes that were never going to work, I crocheted on a little button band and I'm quite pleased with it. It's way more bare than I ever wear, but one of the ladies at knitting this morning told me about Hollywood tape - do you know about it? I was picturing her taping up her boobs, and I had a not-so-pleasant experience with the tape on the Victoria's Secret stick-on number, but this is double-sided tape that works skin-to-fabric or fabric-to-fabric. Very interestink - I have an abnormal fear of my bra straps showing, so I'll be looking into the stuff.

And these:

socks for the man

Socks for the man, who from now on I think I'll call Captain America, or CA for short. He's in security - serious, so you can get out of bed in the morning security, and he takes it very, very seriously. If I telly you any more I'll have to kill you, so know that you're safer because CA is out there protecting America. So I made these socks for him maybe 18 months ago - never wove in the ends. What's wrong with me? Upon inspection after finishing, I either changed needle sizes for the second sock or lost my mind on gauge, so yes, the sock in the back is a bit smaller. He'll wear them, and he'll damn well like them too!
ETA - Holy cow, I just realized what socks these are.... These are the socks I grabbed on the way to Florida when my father passed away suddenly in April 2005. They're the socks that kept me sane on the plane, and in the middle of the night, and when I didn't know what else to do. I didn't finish the second sock for a long time, so it's no wonder it's a different size. These are the socks that saved me, and they're the same socks that got me published for the very first time in Annie Modesitt's collection of essays called Cheaper than Therapy. I knit a couple of purl stitches in the toe of the first one just so I'd always know which ne I started that morning on the plane. I think maybe I'll put them away. Or maybe CA will wear them. I have no idea. Phew.

I also finally finished a very large cable swatch for Melissa Leapman in lipstick red Cascade 220, but I can't show you that. Very pretty and it seemed to go on forever.

February is also for Frogging:


May I present Tubey, in Gedifra Softice I bought last May in Asheville, NC. It's now been ripped twice and is beginning to look a bit fuzzy. I think it will rest for a bit before I decide what it wants to be. I WILL make a Tubey - maybe just not with this stuff. Or maybe I will use it - it made fabulous random stripes.

And for Figuring Out What to do with the Brown Wool:

Here's the first test, spun on the middle Lendrum ratio and double plied. From this test I decided I'd go for a tree ply I'm up to a bobbin and a half, and spinning is the plan for tonight's tv watching.

brown wool

I think I'll frog one more thing before the end of the month, and I blame BonneMarie for this several years ago - can't remember. It's Le Gilet Long cardigan (scroll down - it's shown in purple/white) that was all the rage, and I had to have it because it was French, and it's all knitted but I could never get it to fit together properly to seam it up. It's probably a good thing since it's unlikely I'd ever wear a long, bright white and orange cardigan. The was a keyhole top pattern in that issue of the Phildar mag that I'll have to hunt down one day....

February 26, 2007


There's a smidge of evidence that we're getting close to the greens and balmy breezes of spring around here, aside from those few days of fake-out spring last week. The daffodils are blooming:


And there's some action in the tulip beds - I've never grown tulips before, and it looks to me like the flower is coming out of the ground first. Is that how they work? I hope not, because it's supposed to be a big mass of purple and white and NOT this strange wine-y color (quite true on my screen):

We'll see. I'm a few weeks into my chiropractic treatment and I probably undo everything every time I pick up my needles. I've been trying to get my left arm to do more work - it seems so unfair that my right arm/hand have to do all the work. I've trained the left hand to mouse quite capably, but my battle to get it to carry its weight is tough. I attempted to whisk some batter, and wipe out the oven with my left arm this weekend, but I get into it and my right arm gets all impatient and just grabs whatever from the left saying "just give it to me - I can do it faster!" We're working on it, me and my arms. Oh yeah - that gyro-ball I got to exercise my arms and wrists made my breastbone sore enough that I was sure I had a tumor and was getting ready to call my doctor. No tumor, gyro-ball making pretty as table art.

Me and these weenie arms have finished a 6-foot scarf for the designer I test knit for, and when I hit publish I'm off to give it a bit of a block before sending it away. I've rejeuventated the CeCecardigan from ChicKnits, but I'm thinking perhaps the cotton is making me more sore. I need to get some socks on the needles for mindless knitting, and figure out what I need to do for Knittapalooza IV which is fast approaching.

About February 2007

This page contains all entries posted to Dawn's Dream in February 2007. They are listed from oldest to newest.

January 2007 is the previous archive.

March 2007 is the next archive.

Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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