Webs Wednesday, May 28 2008 

ETA: A title, for one–did you know that a definition of “web” is “a fabric, especially a fabric in the process of being woven”? Now I can say I’ve got a web on the loom and a UFO on the needles! I also forgot to include a totally cool weaving sample that Leslie-Ann (carpeyarnum wove for the store), details below!

SO, I <3 weaving! I wear this thing ALL the TIME. And this whole simple woven wrap thing is making the rounds in Blogland. Laura generously and wisely offers up the sort of info you need to make a nice stole of your own. My interest in rigid heddle weaving started with Kirsten and Mary’s beautiful pieces, with some help from the Rigid Heddle Looms group on Ravelry.

Paparazzi

I finished a second piece, a simple scarf in Elsebeth Lavold Silky Wool. It’s a gift and I’m not sure I love how it came out. Using my favorite Willy-Nilly methodology, I bought three skeins and definitely anticipated having to purchase a fourth. Sure, I could have done the warp and weft calculations but when you’re following the Willy-Nilly method…there’s something so gratifying about NOT being fastidious with this, I feel like it sort of flies in the face of a well-established “weaverly” persona.

Leslie-Ann, a co-worker at Webs, is teaching a rigid-heddle class this summer and it’s filling up like crazy. she weaves and/or designs a lot of the samples you see in the catalog and ads. She wove a sample for the class that is hanging in the store and it ROCKS. It’s just plain ole’ plain weave but check it out, it’s so PLAID!

Plaid Scarf

She used the gorgeous to begin with Misti Alpaca Handpaint Sock yarn, one skein of color #10. I’ve seen the sample sock we have an I hate to say, it doesn’t come close to how cool this scarf is. I think this yarn was made to be woven, especially at this width. Since I’m a total weaving copy-cat, you can bet you’ll be seeing a version of this project here. Thanks, Flip Loom early adopters!

My camera just doesn’t do red, so this picture is sorta useless. Note the crispness of the fabric–I think I beat a little too enthusiastically and it ended up a little stiff, even post blocking. The silk really dominates here, and it’s almost a little rough, much rougher than any knit-up piece I’ve ever felt in the Silky Wool. Not the soft drape-y wonder that is 2/14 Alpaca Silk. It’s fantastic to rediscover yarns this way, I have to say.

Red Red Scarf

Well, I’ve got to get back to my breakfast and Firefly…I’m finally watching it and it’s AWESOME!

CR

High in the sky apple pie hopes… Sunday, Jan 20 2008 

Spring yarns are trickling in at the store and they are super tempting! I have so much cotton, linen, hemp, etc. in my stash, I’m forcing myself to NOT gorge on anything from Berroco or Classic Elite, specifically the highly tempting Seduce and Soft Linen. Trying to ignore the totally adorable patterns from Norah Gaughan and Pam Allen. To quash these cravings and celebrate the fact that I think this is the year I’ve finally accepted that I’m a fledgling designer (long time readers will know that there has been much internal consternation surrounding that self-appointed title), I’m working up a little pattern that will take just a few skeins of these gorgeous new yarns and hopefully be a cute mid-season accessory. I wasn’t allowed to buy the yarn on Saturday because it is just that new (not in the Webs system) but hopefully by next weekend because it’ll be a quick knit, and I want to wear it!

Now, for some heart-stopping cuteness. In November (my month of knitting a million sweaters) I hinted at some unphotographed FOs, two tiny dog sweaters I made for a (very talented) friend’s adorable pomapoo. Shara snapped some pics and left them for me in the comments but I want everyone to meet the very dapper Diego!
Diego

And his new little sister Sadie, wearing the elfish green hoodie I originally made for Diego!

Sadie

That face!!

Sadie

I used the very adaptable Basic Hound Hoodie (Ravelry link but you can Google it for a free PDF). The first beige hoodie was knit with about half a skein of Tahki Soho Tweed which is a very nice yarn, soft and quick knitting. The green hoodie took half a skein of Berroco Ultra Alpaca. In the store the Cascade 220 is right next to the Ultra Al and…it makes the Ultra Al look really good. For about 1 dollar more you get a vastly more luxurious yarn in totally unique, complex colors. I’m not knocking Cascade 220 (or it’s awesome rival yarn Northampton) but if you haven’t used Ultra Al, I implore you, buy a skein, knit some little gloves or a hat (or both). You’ll fall for it.

More handspun…I need to start knitting it before I have yet another stash to manage. This is what I’m calling Wheat Sheaves, spun from 4 ounces of Spunky Eclectic BFL in Monkey Farts, most hilarious color name ever. I’m actually kind of happy with the pictures I got of this one, so lots more at Flickr.

Wheat Sheaves

I’ve also been practicing my photo skills on the Sundara Season’s Club shipment (this is Tickled Pink, the spring selection):

Tickled Pink

It’s been interesting, I chose Autumn and Spring, my favorite seasons in real life but I’m thinking I should have stuck with my CMB season, Winter. Those skeins have been deep reds or weird combos of green and charcoal or magenta and black. I live for weird colors! I sold and traded my silk lace weight because I’m just not that masochistic. If I ever really get into hardcore lace knitting it’ll be with something sticky.

What else? Oh yes, I had some exciting scores at Target the other day, got a creme brulee set for 5 dollars!! Steve, owner of Webs and wisecracker overheard me telling a coworker and shouted, “you know why it was 5 bucks, because no one makes creme brulee at home!!” I beg to differ, I made it immediately and had a very delicious breakfast the next morning!

Creme Brulee

Won’t be making a habit of it though. They include a “low-cal” version but it’s probably not worth the dairy. Besides a momentary freak-out about the butane torch (visions of explosions, probably the REAL reason no one makes them at home) I had success. I also made paneer (Fresh Cheese in Bittman) the other day, which was very fun. I’m having a streak of food luck, what should I make next??

CR

Whiskeytown! Thursday, Jan 17 2008 

To paraphrase Martha, good things. Very, very good. Cap Karma only took one ball of Queensland Kathmandu Aran Tweed (currently on sale for $4.29, $4.29 people!! OMG, Brett, please don’t be offended that I knit you a 5 dollar hat). The yarn is so incredibly soft and tweedy I found it hard to put down. And hey, cables are FUN, I forgot.

Cap Karma

Close-up:

Cap Karma closeup

And out in the world, shopping for bulk nuts for Whiskey Cookies!

Cap Karma

They looked so pale and plain we thought it’d be a good idea to add some Demerara sugar on top! They came out of the oven looking kind of disappointing, like flat, pale pancakes. How did they taste?

Whiskey Cookies

Delicious!! They were so breakfast-y with a hint of banana from the whiskey (does anyone else think whiskey tastes like banana), we decided to add a maple syrup swirl to the last batch. There are…only a couple left. Highly recommended cookie, I’ve never had such luck with baking in my life. The texture is…NOT unlike the soft squishy cables of the Cap Karma.

Ah, full circle…

CR

Venti! Sunday, Oct 7 2007 

The other day I finally had a tattoo touched up that I’d been meaning to fix for…oh…12 years now. Yes, that means I was 13 when I got this tattoo, my first. I was living in Germany and went with my mother to get it (long, sordid story). This is really the only picture I could find, it’s a tiny lavender rose (barely visible):


Anyhow, it’s better now! I love the three yellow pistils…stamen? Plant sex organs. I pretty much let the artist do his thing. It’s slightly more open now (appropriate, I’m older, more in bloom) and has more thorns (also appropriate!). I asked for what I thought was an impossible color (light burgundy) but he pulled it off very well and updated the green, which was a very dated shade of jade. I was very impressed with the work (Timmy at Holeshot in Amherst).

In case you think I haven’t been knitting…you’re wrong. I’m still ignoring my Blood Orange cardigan (the yarn really resembles the flesh of a deliciously strange blood orange) but I’ve been churning out small projects here and there. I have three baby sweaters on the needles and a half finished Tilted Duster (all it needs is the skirt, a collar and buttons). BTW, Norah Gaughan is about to unveil a pretty bitchin’ FO/WIP, keep your eyes peeled!


The color isn’t anywhere online (a seller on eBay calls it “Abusar” but that isn’t it’s given name) and it reminds me of the main color of Reynolds Whiskey in Enid…my poor, ignored Enid. Maybe I can take that to Baltimore and finish the yoke in my hotel room? Working at Stitches always gives me a knit fit (like a nic fit…). It’s puckering ever so slightly, some of the floats span 5+ stitches so I’ve been ‘catching’ them as I go in using directions from Montse Stanley’s Handbook. I think it will block flat.


I finished Foliage, my first top-down hat. I’m blocking it on a dinner plate so it’ll be more snood-ish. I love snoods! I double stranded Malabrigo Worsted in Bobby Blue. It reminds me of a vintage bathing cap and was a fun knit. I used twisted ribbing and bound-off purlwise, other than that no mods. Clearer pictures at Ravelry.


I made a few adorable and goofy coffee cardigans. These are wicked fun and I actually have been using it, it makes baristas smile. This is knit with Valley Yarns Superwash (LOVE how it looks knit at this tight gauge) and features three corozo nut buttons from the Creative Needle in Amherst, which happens to be owned by the mother-in-law of a professor in my department. I love corozo nut buttons almost as much as I love shell buttons. And Moving Mud buttons. And horn buttons. And…oh, I’m a button whore, are you surprised??


I just purchased a kit to make this Greek Deli version by Jennifer Reichert, it’s hysterical! This embroidered grocery purse of hers is 2 parts hysterical, 8 parts amazing.

Brain food, mmmm….I don’t eat much fruit but I loves my vegetables (this site makes me drool). I have many ways of preparing them so that they taste very, very decadent. This was today’s lunch, an old favorite (recipe here):

My next treat is butternut squash roasted with maple syrup and cracked peppercorn (something about the hot/sweet combination is very soothing). I do a mashed cauliflower with cream and asiago that would make you disown potatoes forever.

Meet Irma the Owl, a friend who is staring sternly down from her perch. I met her at Starbucks where she was deeply discounted and deeply adorable. She looks like an Irma, and when I looked up that name I learned that it is an Old High German/Hoch Deutsch word for…word! Perfect patron (stuffed) saint for a communication scholar, no?

Speaking of that. I have a 12-page paper to write. Probably why I suddenly felt the urge to blog. I’m going to try to link the practice of blogging to early 20th-century language theories (using some key works from Saussure, Nietzsche, Boas, Sapir, Malinowski, Jakobson, and Bakhtin…among others).

WUNSCH MIR GLUCK, BITTE!

P.S. FYI, funniest Fug I’ve seen in awhile.

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