Thursday, March 31, 2011

Where Are They Now?

Back when I was first learning to knit and still using Kniffy Knitter Looms, I made lost of people scarves with . . . novelty yarn (le gasp!). Yes I was one of those crazies buying Fun Fur and other outrageously colored eyelash yarn and knitting tube scarfs on my loom. When I jumped into the craft, that was what was the rage, and like everyone that wore a chopped up sweatshirts and a side ponytail in the 80's, I outgrew it.

My favorite was an excellent scarf with 3 or 4 different yarns (I did make sure the colors were complementary) that ended up being I think 8 feet long in the end. The recipient, bless her heart, adored it and threw it in great artistic loops around her neck upon opening it up. No clue if she still wears it (wouldn't blame her if she doesn't) but at least I knew that she loved the thought and the effort I had put in.

The scarf was so well recieved that I set out to knit everyone one! Well, not everyone, but do recall making at least one neighbor a scarf, and one for my piano teacher, and my piano teacher's daughter. My piano teacher always held awesome holiday parties, including a Valentine's Mother/Daughter Tea, so both she and her daughter got red and pink feathery scarves. Those I know were put to good use for the holiday, then packed away with the Valentine decorations (which is probably the best thing to do with such outrageous scarves).

I also made my mom a scarf, which she doesn't wear because 1) it's a bit itchy, which is unfortunate but can't be helped and 2) she says she "doesn't know how to wear scarves" despite me giving her several pointers (my mom is sweetly a little fashion oblivious, but then again has so many other important things in her mind that it's totally excusable). I think I might ask her permission to frog the scarf and turn it into something else, maybe a lacy table runner, something that doesn't itch.

So when my then-boyfriend's mother's birthday was coming up, I thought a scarf would be perfect! She's a hard person to shop for, "stuff" usually just ends up being clutter around the house. I knew she liked clothes but didn't have a lot of pretty things since she felt self-conscious about her weight, so a lovely scarf in her favorite color seemed just the thing. I found a soft eyelash in a rich shade of purple, and when I showed it to the boyfriend, he was very surprised! That was her EXACT favorite shade! Yay! So I got to work and quickly had the scarf completed and wrapped up. I presented it to her, and she ooohed and ahhhed and put it on right away. Sadly, that was the last time I saw her wear it. In fact, the only other time I saw it, it was on the floor sticking out from under a stack of boxes with all sorts of dust bunnies and shredded newspaper stuck to it. Thankfully, it was only some cheap eyelash, and I quietly added his mom to my "Never again shall I knit for" list. Sad, but also kind of not unexpected. I just really hope the rest of my scarves did not end up this way, or if they did, that I never hear of it and can hang onto the happier memories of muti-colored fluff.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Tidy Mind, Tidy Stitches

I confess that while I'm naturally a bit of a neat-freak, organizing my yarn and knitting tools was not something I spent a lot of time on. I had a cupboard for the yarn, a drawer for the tools, and several WIP baskets lying around, and as long as everything made it into one of those containers, everything was fine.

Until I moved. Now, I didn't move in the traditional sense of pack up all your stuff, borrow a truck, get all your friends together, then MOVE. First I was just spending lots of time at Bruce's house. Then I was spending a week at a time at his house. Then I was only at my parents' for 3 days before running back to Bruce's (the situation with my parents is . . . something for another time. Things are much better now that we don't live together). So my stuff has been migrating bit by bit. I still go by my parents' place once every 10 days or so to pick up something else and give them a chance to see me.

My knitting is especially all over the place. First it was just my current project in my purse. Then it was 3 projects in my knitting bag. Then it was that plus a handful of needles and a plastic bag of yarn. Then I grabbed the plastic drawer most of my tools are in, but it's still in the trunk of the car. Now I have two bags of yarn/WIPs in the closet, a bag of loose tools and random yarn in my car, the plastic drawer in the trunk, and my knitting bag stuffed with all the miscellaneous that hasn't found a home yet.

So what to do? The Knit/Crochet Blog Theme for today is organization, but there is none to be had here!

This is my plan:
  • Move plastic drawer from trunk to closet.
  • Scratch that. Tidy up closet shelves to make room, then move in plastic drawer.
  • Stuff all loose tools/bags of yarn into drawer.
  • Go through knitting bag and knit up all WIPs hiding in there.
  • Put finished objects away in appropriate areas.
  • Put all tools and yarn that don't belong in knitting bag into already overstuffed drawer.
  • Knit something to distract myself from chaotic drawer.
  • Fetch remaining knitting related items from parents' house.
  • Stuff them into chaotic drawer.
  • Knit something else to avoid dealing with drawer.
  • Invent new organization system.
Yup, that sounds good to me.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Skill + 1UP

I had always meant to teach myself crochet. In the beginning I never really thought about it much because there was always so much knitting to do. But I did definitely want to learn, I loved expanding my knowledge of crafts. After a while I thought "Oh, maybe I'll never get around to it, there are so many other things I want to do." But with my introduction to Ravelry came all the wondrous things you could make with crochet.

It was really my mom's gift to me this past Christmas that sealed the deal. She gave me three books: Freeform Style, Shibori Knitted Felt, and Hello My Name is Amineko. Freeform style teaches you the element behind freeforming the most amazing pieces, combining knit and crochet. Hmm . . . And all the cute little Amineko kitties are crochet too. Are you trying to send me a message, Mother? Well there was nothing for it, I would have to learn. Ironically, felting is another technique I was procrastinating learning, and Shibori Knitted Felt is full of awesomely lovely things that I now must learn to make.

It took me a while, but I finally am catching on to crochet. It took instruction from several different books, a handful of online tutorials, and some tips from some very helpful friends, but thanks to them I am just putting the finishing touches on my first piece that incorporates crochet. Now I just need to get up the motivation to learn to spin!

Monday, March 28, 2011

A Tale Of Two Yarns

It's funny that the first topic of Knit and Crochet week is about yarn when I just wrote about yarn manifesting it's own destiny just a few days ago.

So let me wax poetic again about how much I love that particular yarn, Lion Brand Amazing. It totally is amazing! Ok, so it isn't the most precious yarn in the world, but for a half wool/half synthetic yarn sold at Michaels, it's pretty awesome. It's really soft (unless you don't like wool or are allergic to wool, in which case I'm sorry you have to miss out) and the color-ways are sooo pretty! I've made two projects with it now: Whisper Crystal Case and Flower of Life Tam and I love the end result of both. Sadly both projects are lacking pictures :( I really can't wait until I have a reliable method to get pictures off my camera and uploaded online.* Both of them are done it Wildflower, but I love the look of the other colors too. Definitely something I'd go buy a basket full of if I had any money at the moment.

Not so much love for the sea-foam green mohair that I originally tried to knit Wisp out of. I did discover where it was hiding and plan to tackle the pattern one more time but maybe with a few changes in order to keep my sanity lest it go bad again.

Also not so much for Lion Suede. Same company that made Amazing, total disaster. I tried to knit a little pouch to hold my stuff when I go to the Renaissance Faire (an almost annual occupation - whee alliteration). But the thing did not want to be a pouch. The yarn did not want to be anything! It was a bear to knit with and a bitch to rip out. I recovered that one too from it's hiding place and I'm giving it one more chance before I donate it. It's the suede's fault that I had my first "UGH!" project on Ravelry. I have since deleted said project from my page because I'm picky like that and only want positive energy, so anything with a big "UGH!" on it had to go. But I'm fair minded, so one last chance for it to shape up and make something nice for me. I had bought it on a whim because I thought it felt soft, but it does have an odd texture once you really start paying attention. Soft, yes, but somehow sticky and squeaky even after it's been knit up. I think if I actually finished a project, it'd be ok, hence my reluctant willingness to give it another go.

I know most people writing for blog week will probably be extolling the virtues of Malabrigo or Kidsilk Haze or other legendary names that I know as a knitter, but have not had the luxury to work with. Ahh, being a broke knitter sometimes really sucks. But at least if I'm finding such joy in the stuff I can find at Michaels, I know my joy factor will only go up exponentially once I can afford more quality yarns. Or learn to spin!

*I can get pictures online, but it requires a Mac computer since those are the only computers that will automatically recognize my camera without installing drivers - something I can't do on the PC's I have access too because it's a big pain the butt and none of said PC's are actually mine. Luckily my best friend, who's apartment I am at all the time anyway, just bought a Mac, so hopefully more pictures more regularly. Soonish.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Candles and crafts

Today is Bruce's birthday! He's 22 today and while we don't have anything planned, we are looking forward to a nice dinner and maybe some time with friends. There are ironically 5 or 6 different raves/parties going on in various locals around us (including two birthday celebrations for other friends/acquaintances), but I think we're just going to keep things simple. I'll have to ask him when he gets up, which should be in about 15 minutes unless he decides to ignore the alarm.

I successfully made some crochet . . . um, tassels? I guess that's what I'd call them. They're green, and I'm going to crochet a flower in blue and purple, then sew them to the front of Kay's present. I really want to get it done so I can give it to her. I haven't actually seen her since she first broke her ankle. By now it's in a cast and practically everyone has signed it except me. Anyway, her little purse is nearly done, I got it all stitched up last night. Now I just need to crochet the flower, attach it with the green tassels, and knit some i-cord drawstrings.

And I already have my next project planned - a beanie for my friend Eric who works nights at the drugstore. He's really more of an aquaintence since I never see him unless I'm going to visit my other friend Jack who's night manager at said drugstore. He was going to buy yarn for me, but I was at my parents' place yesterday and I went through the random skeins that hadn't yet made the move (all 6 of them, stuff I don't really like and will probably donate) and discovered the perfect black hat yarn! Just a single skein, but I then went on Ravelry used the search function to find me a pattern to fit the yardage I have. So now I'll be able to knit him a hat for free and get rid of a skein I didn't know what else to do with.

The quest for minimalism is going well in theory, but the reality is I don't need to reduce my stuff as drastically as other people do. I got really caught up in the gung-ho-ness of it all, but am now scaling back to something more workable for me. I still have a ton of little projects to do including refilling my pill box with all my meds and vitamins (note to self: do not forget to take today's dosage), condensing my cd's from 3 different places into 1, and tackling the shelves in the closet to try and free up some space.

But not so much work today, my darling should be up soon and it's his day today! Better make myself some tea before the fun begins.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

In which Things get Organized

Well, we've got some lovely spring rain here, so I've been doing spring cleaning. Sort of. I don't feel like knitting (or any crafting really) at the moment because my hands are bit achey. I think when I'm off my meds (which I shouldn't be, but life happens and I'm a forgetful person), whether changes affect me like an old seaman. Oddly, typing does not increase the ache. Must just be particular hand motions. That, and my typing sessions are usually broken up by me getting up and wandering around and getting more tea, etc. When I'm crafting, I can sit and work for hours without any desire to move or change occupation.

So onto spring cleaning. First I discovered a post on Ravelry about a 333 and a 999 project. Do check out the links, but the gist is you pick 33 or 99 items of clothing to last you 3 months (one season) or a whole year (for the 99). Box up the rest and see just how well you do without excess stuff. The "rules" state that this includes all shoes, jewelry, and accessories though exceptions are made for heirloom and medically necessary items. Also socks and underwear so you don't have to do laundry every other day. Then refrain from buying new stuff, except to replace anything that is worn out. As it is said, this isn't an exercise in suffering, the rules are guidelines not law, but a good minimalist responsibly rotates old items out as new items come in.

Then in the 999 thread, I discovered a link to the 100 Thing Challenge. This was one man's personal quest to reduce his stuff to just 100 items. All personal stuff, not just his wardrobe. He goes on to explain that "community property" and household items don't count, just his personal items he alone is responsible for.

Tangent: I actually don't really believe in property, but I subscribe to it's philosophy because there are too many people (especially in among the rabble I sometimes hang out with) that would say "Ohh, well you don't believe in property, but I do, so all 'your' stuff is now mine" because they're idiots like that. Nice idiots, I don't hang out with total losers.

Anyway, this guy goes pretty extreme. In his list of 100 items, which can be found on the website, he lists a single pen and pencil. Items like his guitar do include blanket coverage for guitar case, picks, extra strings, but other than that, everything is pretty well itemized including all his clothes.

So this has me inspired. I'm already naturally a bit of a neat-freak and Bruce is not, so I've done a bit in his(our)* bedroom in terms of tidying up and getting him to pare down what in the dressers so that I can fit my stuff in too.

*heh, still not quite used to thinking of this as "my home", though my parents' place doesn't really feel like home either. Maybe it's the property thing again. Will save for another entry.

But now I'm really eager to jump into this minimalism. So when Bruce gets up, I'm going to go in there and start getting serious about my stuff. Basic plan:
  • Clothing: I haven't moved enough of it over to really to 33 or 99 pieces yet (well, maybe, I'd need to count), but I am going to start seriously analyzing what gets to come to my new home and what gets a one-way ticket to Goodwill. I think I'm going to break my clothes into categories (warm weather, cold weather, costumes), determine an appropriate quantity for that category, and stick to it.
  • Kandi: most people would say this goes under "jewelry" but any raver child knows the significant of their bracelets. I actually have two jewelry boxes, so I'll dedicate one to just rave jewelry, but also make a conscious effort to keep only the pieces of significance and find groovy people to give the rest to.
  • Books: oh good lord, this one is going to be a biggie. I actually haven't moved any of my books, I just have 2 or 3 that happened to migrate, but I have quite the collection and so does Bruce. I just signed up for Library Thing today which looks like a great catalogueing tool, but it still doesn't change the fact that we have 2 overflowing boxes of books in the closet, my overflowing bookshelf at my parents', and no bookcase in the room. Once things are a little more organized, I'm going to get a shelf in there and start forcing Bruce to donate the ones he doesn't read (well, forcing myself too, oh the life of a bibliophile).
  • Craft supplies: the dude who did 100 Things is obviously not a crafter. Judging by his list of things, he's a hiker/wilderness dude. That does require supplies, but an experienced hiker will be the first to tell less is more. Crafting on the other hand . . . hoo-boy! My stash of supplies is dwindling since I can't afford to buy much, so I think if I can get all craft related things into their own storage container, and not exceed that containers limitations, that would be a good thing.
  • Toiletries: I've noticed that the bathroom can get really cluttered, really fast. I already don't use hair products beyond shampoo and a hair brush, so that helps. I need to go through my big green bathroom case and figure out what's extraneous (big green bathroom case is because Bruce does have a sister, and since she marked her territory in the bathroom way before I was here, I want to respect her space and not take over with my own stuff). I figure if all my hygiene stuff, meds, and other "personal care" can fit neatly into this case, I'll be good to go.
  • Alter: I do have a habit of hanging onto to sentimental stuff because it's "good juju for the alter" but the reality is alters are a center of energy and any good fung-shui expert knows stagnant energy is bad. Giving away special items from the alter to special people is good. Must remember that when it gets crowded on the little table.
I sort of do want to count up my possessions and see how close or far away I am from the 100 item mark. Just writing all my intentions down feels like a trapdoor has been opened in my head and a fresh cool breeze is coming in.

And as if I needed more projects (this is what happens when you are an "unemployed bohemian", your money doesn't come from a 9 to 5 so you end up with lots of spare time) I also want to give this blog a make-over. It started out as purely a knitting blog, but I think I'd like to take it in the direction of being a "This is my Hippie Life" sort of blog. Don't expect a lot of big changes soon, but do expect more than just "so I cast on for this and finished seaming up that".

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Can't Catch a Break

I can't wait until sleepy Bruce is less sleepy and I can go rumage around for yarn without disturbing him, because I just envisioned a beautiful project for my dear friend Kay. Since New Year's Kay has suffered through a broken rib, lost two jobs (through no fault of her own), been arrested for possession of hash*, and now just last week was thrown from a horse and broke her ankle. So, because I can't pay her hospital bills because I'm in debt myself, and I can't magically fix her ankle, and there's only so much I can do in terms of helping her prepare for court, I'm going to knit her something nice.

Last night I had cast on for a drawstring bag based off the ones in my lovely Freeform Style book (clicky for pretty), and I had the brilliant idea that this bag was the perfect little gift to knit for Kay. I thought of making the one I'd already cast on for her, but decided to cast on a second with different colors and a slightly different design. I have yet to fish the yarn out of the closet however (hence waiting for Bruce to wake up), but I'm so stoked on this project idea.

In other news, I know how to crochet! Sort of. I got out my single crochet hook I own (I got it for free when I worked at a craft store a couple years ago) and some yarn and started practicing. I can only do chain stitch and single crochet, but still, that's enough to be starting on. I'm going to practice my double crochet at some point, but there's so many yarn overs in such a weird order that I'm having a hard time remembering how to do it. I know I've already said it here before, but why do so many crocheters tell me knitting looks so hard! Knitting is linear made up of two stitches, knit and purl. Or to make it even more simple, knit and backwards knit. There is literally only ONE stitch to learn. Then you learn how to make that one stitch do different things. With the help of two needles holding it on both sides coaxing it along. Crochet has the chain stitch, the single, the half double, the double, the slip stitch, and the ability to go through existing fabric much like embroidery. And I don't even know yet if I'm forgetting anything! Not only that, but you have only one hook to help you keep these stitches behaving.

And tension! Holy cow it's not a myth! Let me explain:
The first thing you learn when knitting and crocheting is how you need to wind the yarn about your fingers in whatever way suits you best to maintain your tension. My fingers never found a way that worked best and so I never bothered about tension. I let my yarn do whatever it wants, so long as it goes around the needle and through the next stitch when I tell it to. And it worked for me, my gauge was always even.

It would seem that you cannot do this in crochet! Because crochet can leap into being with no structure holding it up (the way knitting hangs nicely down from the needle), you have yarn and bits floating all over the place. Because you have no needles corralling everything for you, you have to do it yourself with your hands! Stop the presses so I can sit down a moment and get myself organized here. Now I'm fighting muscle memory that wants to hold nothing but tool and working yarn. I have to teach my fingers to think independently and delegate tasks. I told Bruce that I think crochet is going to help me even think in a more quantum than linear manner.

I think I might need more tea for this. :)

*Hash is stupidly still a felony in California, despite weed being practically legal. Kay, and I, and most of our friends are the type of hippies that believe weed should be totally legal and that everyone should consume cannabis everyday for the amazing health benefits. Kay began using the hash because it was the only effective pain relief for her broken rib that did not make her puke or have other nasty side effects.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Manifest Destiny

When you start treating "non-living" items as actually entities, some crazy stuff starts to happen.

First, my sea-foam mohair did NOT want to become Wisp. So I changed over to a skien of Lion Brand Amazing and started knitting. It quickly became clear that Amazing loved the Wisp pattern, forming beautiful stripes of color that gently melted over the lace panels and garter stitch sections. But after a short while, it soon became clear that I did not have enough yarn. I had originally bought just one skein of my sea-foam, but had forgotten that because it was about half the weight of Amazing, one skein of Amazing was not going to have the same yardage. Wisp, as those who have made it, is supposed to have 17 total lace panels. I was only able to make 7. Not a scarf. Barely a placemat.

As I was knitting and watching the end of my yarn creep up, Amazing started whispering to me little hints that it wasn't supposed to be a scarf. So I took comfort in this little voice and kept at the project. I ended the pattern and cast off neatly after the 7th lace panel and held up my little rectangle to look at it. I proposed to Bruce that maybe it was meant to be our new alter cloth, since currently our little table is being covered with a pink shawl of mine that I would like to wear now that spring is here. He thought it was a little small.

A bag perhaps? I do like simple bags and I had enough yarn to make an i-cord strap. I started folding the rectangle this way and that, trying to decipher the whispers it made. And then I saw it and knew: it was meant to be a 7 pocket crystal case. I turned it on it's side, folded up the bottom third, and stitched the sides. Now I had one big pocket consiting of 7 lace panels, and 6 garter stitch stripes. I stitched up each of the garter stitch stripes to make 7 individual pockets. Then I got out my beads and began making 7 buttons by tying clusters of beads with sewing thread. The buttons were fastend to the front of each little pocket. Because Wisp already has a series of yarn overs work down both sides, when I folded the top flap over, I already had natural button holes to close the pockets. As I worked on the project, it occurred to me that Amazing had known exactly what it wanted to be and had found a way to manifest it's reality even though I (the vehicle for said manifestation) didn't even realize what was going on. It kind of makes sense too, this particular yarn was stored underneath my alter with all my crystals for several months before I moved in with Bruce. It might have developed an affinity with them and found it's destiny to be keeping crystals safe instead of me warm. How is it that my yarn can figure out what it wants and find fulfillment when so many humans cannot?

And last but not least to be added, on either side I picked up 5 stitches and knit 7 inches of i-cord to make ties that would hold the whole case together like a package. It's gorgeous, it's perfect, the pockets are just the right size for all my crystals (except my really big selenite sphere, but that one doesn't leave the house anyway). I did take pictures, but don't have any way to get them off my camera yet, so the prettiness will have to wait. In the meantime I'm going to go get out some more of my yarn and see if I can't fulfill more fiber destinies!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Well, not a lot of knitting has been going on with my hands, but a lot has been going on in my head! I did cast on Wisp, which I have been meaning to make for some time now. I was going to use a lovely sea-foam lace-weight mohair, but after starting and ripping it out (and unfortunately loosing some yarn in the process), I came to the conclusion that this particular yarn did not want to become Wisp. Actually, when I last looked through my stash, I couldn't find it. I hope it's not so scared to be knit into something it doesn't want to be that it ran away from home! Because it doesn't have anything to fear now, I've started knitting Wisp with something else entirely - Lion Brand Amazing in Wildflower (that's someone else's stash, but it gives you the idea of the coloring). I wouldn't call this mohair per se, but it does have the softness and bloom which I'm loving. It's also slightly heavier weight, so the lace isn't as delicate, but I think with some blocking it'll turn out to still be just as gorgeous.

But knitting in my head! I've started designing a whole raver fairy outfit to wear to all the local parties. I'm known on the local scene as Green Butterfly because I always wear green wings to the parties. I've already done my Raverstar Top (as seen in action at one of the parties with my wings), but I'm thinking of doing a whole outfit sort of in the style of Tinkerbell, only more modern and less, well, Tinkerbell. I'm Luna Moth the Green Butterfly, not a Disney fairy.

I was given the name Luna at a beach rave last summer, the first time I ever tried psychadelics, and I spent hours and hours sitting on the rocks listening to the music and meditating over the name and how it related to me and the meaning of my life. About the same time, I was rediscovering what butterflies meant to me all over again. Butterflies had been one of my spirit animals, but there was a period during my college years when I sort of forgot all about it. During this time of rediscovery, I had done a water color painting featuring a white butterfly, which eventually ended up green by some really random whim. I ended up getting rid of the painting for various reason, but the green butterfly kept haunting me. Then I suddenly remembered there was a butterfly named the Luna Moth, so I decided to look it up and see what it looked like. It was the exact same green butterfly I had painted and was now haunting my dreams. It was a turning point in my journey of self discovery and the Green Butterfly has come to have a lot of personal meaning for me, and somehow being Luna the Green Butterfly became my party persona as well.

But I gotta say, even when your dancing around like a mad butterfly to some sick hardstyle, it can get a little chilly, and your typical jacket doesn't fit over wings. So I've decided I need to design some kind of shawl/poncho/cardi that can accommodate my wings while keeping me warm and stylish. More to come on this as I start working out design ideas.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011


I had cops make fun of my knitting today. I don't really want to talk about it. Well, the whole incident was fine except it resulted in a big argument between me and Bruce. Resolution to come soon. Anyway, the cops asked to search my car (because I'm a terribly dangerous marijuana patient) and when they asked if I had anything dangerous, I disclosed that I had a crafting knife and some knitting needles. "Oh ho ho, you're going down for those!" was the cop's not so very comical response. Made himself chuckle, so at least someone got some humor from the situation.

Anyway, knitting has taken a backseat to fixing my car (which is about 90% taken care of, just need to wait for the DMV to send me my new tags).

I did start and finish a Peace Washcloth and then got the idea to make more of the peace, love, happiness clothes and then sew them into a blanket. Yes, a cotton blanket will be very heavy, but it also may get turned into a car blanket, a wall hanging, or an area rug. Sort of depends on how many squares I knit before I get bored and want to make something else.

Work on the Magnum Opus jacket was coming along as I cast on for the front left half, but it seems I lost a stitch somewhere, and as I'm only like 10 rows in, if I can't easily find the lost stitch I'm going to frog it and start over.

I've also been meaning to practice crochet. I say practice because I know the theory, but keep getting tangled and quitting. Everyone who crochets tells me "Knitting looks so hard! One hook is enough, I could never manage two needles!" Well, let me tell you, I'll take my two needles any day with their safe structure any day! How on earth do crocheters manage their work all flopping about with no other needle to corral it? Knitting is so linear, crochet has an almost quantum way of just forming out of nowhere. BUT, I figure if I'm going to master free-form fiber arts, I'd better learn to work the more free-forming crochet.

I just brought most of my knitting "stuff" from my parents' house, so hopefully more knitting goodness lies in my future.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Happy New Year?!?

Wow, I can't believe I haven't posted since September. When I think about it, there was sooo much going on to distract me.

Let's see, since I last wrote:

-JR broke up with me. Sad day (or rather morning since it was at 2am after a date), but in retrospect, maybe not such a bad thing. Without going into personal details too much, I think it was best for us to both move on and look for people who were better matches for us.

-I dated around a bit and ended up in a fantastic relationship with Bruce, a wonderful guy who fits me to a tee!

-I quit my terrible job at the movie theater. Now I make my money doing a little freelance writing and odd jobs. I've "unofficially" moved in with Bruce and his parents.

-Went through a lot of stressful times with friendships, a friend who got arrested (and to whom Bruce and I gave all our money to help bail out, great for financial security, right?), my car being unable to pass smog and now a broken driver's seat seatbelt.

Knitting has been the one of the only things to keep me sane the past few months, and sadly I neglected my knitting at the turn of the new year, right when I probably needed it the most. It doesn't help when I live between two houses and most of my yarn and tools are at the wrong house.

I have however been knitting up a storm the past few weeks. I completed Christmas presents for the family if not all the friends (before Christmas Day too!), and have since completed a headband, a bikini "rave" top (with fuzzy gogo leg warmers in the works still), and have set to work on a big, colorful hooded jacket.

This jacket . . . well, this jacket. For Christmas my mom gave me several knitting books, including Freeform Style: Blend Knit and Crochet to Create Fiber Art Wearables
by Jonelle Raffino and Prudence Mapstone.
I am IN LOVE!!! The jacket is based off their basic long vest pattern, but I'm adding sleeves and a big fluffy hood. And instead of spending a lot of money on yarn I can't afford right now, I've been busting through my stash of all my odd single skeins. I just add a new color and knit until I'm out. Each color gets it's own textured stitch pattern as well, so in the end I'll have a multi-colored, multi-textured hippie jacket! Or a big mess, one of the two. I feel good about it so far.

I also have plans to start creating a few simple designs I can knit and sell on Etsy for some extra income. Wouldn't it be nice to make enough money to knit for free? Bruce and I were even kicking around the idea that I could ask at the local community centers and see if they would be interested in letting me teach a beginning knitting class.

And my "new year's resolution" - to dust this blog off and actually use it!