Very Red & Romantic... & a bit of needle sorcery.

see, i really DO KNIT, i told you! (: i got some "surprise" yarn in the mail Saturday... the "surprise" being that i had never worked with it & had no idea what to do with it. i bought it off of eBay for super cheeeeap. i got in 3 balls, & was VERY happy the moment i saw it, as it has ALL the colors of my hair. it is a quad repeat, burgundy on textured viscose, same color on cotton, red on viscose, same on cotton. well, i wanted to do SOMETHING with the holiday & all, (not that i do not have a million-ball stash that it could have easily wound up in). so, i grabbed some 15s & did like my most favorite of net stitches that i normally use with Giotto & larger needles. however, not knowing the lengths in between transitions & having symmetry issues, i knew i was going to be ripping it out & working either a different way or different width & probably with a different needle size. this was only a test... NOT SO! what i did made PERFECT little squares, every time!!! the transition would ALWAYS end in the middle of the end-of-row
stitch, as you see here. how CRAZY is that? serendipity defined. & here is another super-sweet thing, i started the Hearts Scarf from the last Knitty Fall Surprise, (speaking of symmetry issues). i used a different yarn i had lying around, instead of ordering 3 balls of Blizzard. i tried Paton's "Divine", 1 Ball of Richest Rose} & a bit smaller needles, US#10.5 instead of US#15, but it is like over 7" wide. i am making it much longer, also. to celebrate Mardi Gras that i am missing, i found a GREAT gift idea for my sweater-loving secret pal today... am so pleased with myself. i want to put up a photo, but i will wait until after she gets it. MY SP4 sent me the cutest mousey eCard!!! i have to finish those list questions for her. also, anyone know where i could find a sweater pattern for a fat bunny? here Luna is snuggling with my Husband. i guess i could try a Chihuahua pattern or something, but their arms are different. well, judging from the link i have on the photo, i bet i know where i can ask.



SP4 question list = FINISHED!!!!!!!! just for you, SP. (:

ok, since every time i think of this, i THINK it is going to take a lot of time & never get to it... i will answer a little at a time, & change the title to FINISHED (my poor SP4) when i actually AM. sorry... i have my hands in too many things at once, for sure....
1. Are you a yarn snob (do you prefer high-end/natural fibers)? Do you avoid Red Heart and Lion Brand? Or is it all the same to you? oh, my yes, i am super snobby... only because i find such good deals online, & make accessories more than garments, probably. i LOVE knitting with Hanah Hand-dyed silks quite a bit, & they are pricey. i like hand-dyed Cherry Tree Hill Glitter Alpacas, in human colors, & LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE Colinette, particularly Giotto. but, i tend to knit everything large & netty, so it goes a long way, i think. there are some nice Lion things, especially now, & i do not mind the fur for certain items, of course. but just plain ol' wool-ease or acrylic = ICK.
2. Do you spin? Crochet? i
i can crochet enough, other than that, i do not dig it. spinning is awesome, & i wish i could get more into it... i did it as a little girl, but no real set-up at the present time.
3. Do you have any allergies? (smoke, pets, fibers, perfume, etc.) i LIVE for pets, but go to great lengths to keep their furs from my knitting. i LOVE smoking while playing cards in a bar, but HATE smoke smells on anything. no other allergies, but i DO hate tropical fruity smells (except for coconut)
4. How long have you been knitting? since i was say three years old, on & off. on now for a long time, & all the time!
5. Do you have an Amazon or other online wish list? yeah, but it is EXHAUSTIVE. it is more for me to "bookmark" titles that i want for when i bargain-shark shop them later. i saw that wishlist.com place & may try that. if someone, & this includes YOU, my dear Husband, does not soon get me the BAT hair clips, small, in silver, black, or RED, from VampireCosmetics, i will explode, for sure. c'mon, i have been asking for them for 3 years now! (too stubborn to go get them myself, i guess).
fabulous Batclips

6. What's your favorite scent? (for candles, bath products etc.)
vanillas, cinnamons, deep musky smells, those pretend gingerbread or cookie smells, SPICES, PEPPERMINTS!!!, lilac, lavender, & black licorice, but i only know of one candle company who does this. i wear Poison by Christian Dior since i was a teenager, & have sprinkled in Hypnotic Poison since they came out with that. i first tried it as a gift from my Husband that i received on Our 1st ibg date. i am behind with trying their new release of Pure Poison, & CANNOT WAIT to try it!!! they describe Poison as deep & oriental, i guess i would agree with that. OPIUM has always been what i would switch to if POISON ever disappeared, let the heavens forbid!
7. Do you have a sweet tooth? oh, my GOODNESS, yes. especially for chocolate & for black jellybeans, especially those black DOTS candies called CROWS... oh, how i do LOVE CHOCOLATE, especially Lindt! i once bought an Easter Bunny stuffed animal that was chocolate scented.
8. What other crafts or Do-It-Yourself things do you like to do? i was particularly fond of & good at stained glass, but i never reopened my things when i moved cross country or set up a workshop. it is just too cold & harsh here & i would rather KNIT.
9. What kind of music do you like? Can your computer/stereo play MP3s? i worship all grunge music, i am stubborn & will forever live in the 90s that way. i really adore the Rolling Stones, U2, & Jane;s Addiction, as well. i love opera, as well as cello sonatas. i can play MP3s anywhere.
10. What's your favorite color? Or--do you have a color family/season/palette you prefer? i, of course, REALLY LOVE deep RED, as well as black, charcoal even more than black, but not so much red & black together, unless it is some kooky, purposeful goth thing, or the Rocky Horror logo, or red, black, & silver together. Colinette has renewed my appreciation for deep fall colors, rusts, olives, etc., & i am in love with my Blue Heeler, partially for being so damned incredibly BEAUTIFULLLL, with that rich steel-blue and blue-black silvery coat!!!
11. What is your family situation? Do you have any pets?
ha ha ha. i am married to my husband, M, for 2 & 1/4 years now. we own a big, very glass house, to nurse my tropical plants, in the great lakes region, very near Chicago, & are ANXIOUSLY awaiting retreat back to MY origination point of New Orleans. PETS? Pets? do i have pets? well .... i have Sable, my sweet Blue Heeler & knitting co-pilot, my Miniature Dachshund, Gretchen, died last January & my heart still bleeds.... a week BEFORE we lost her, we found Sixx, (so named because of his double dew claws on each back paw, which were removed when he was neutered). he is a Neopolitan Mastiff mix, same everything, gold with a black mask, but pricked ears instead of floppy. we JUST TWO WEEKS AGO found a HUGE Malamute/Red Siberian Husky mix with BLUE eyes, who we named Woden, (just about the only good thing to come from the ice & snow were the Vikings). i am not a cat person, but Gretchen;s life companion, a giant grey & black tabby cat, Meow-Meow still lingers, and the day before Halloween, we found a totally black tiny kitten with green eyes at our Tante Ritas house, & had to take him in, as he was sick & cold. we have lovely Luna the bunny that we got for our first wedding anniversary, & she is a petulant riot. i have a live snailquarium for many years now. & then we have numerous other things that we rehabilitate, including bunnies.
12. What are your life dreams? (really stretching it here, I know)
a week ago, i would not have known where to begin, but just the other night, the LOG CABIN HOME commercial was on again, & both myself & my Husband LOVE even thinking about that. we have had the color brochure for a couple of years now. i was raised to age 8 in one, & i guess i never got over the love of such a thing. returning to New Orleans is also high on the priority list, it is a dream, but much more tangible than dream status... just how, you ask, will i make a Log Cabin work in subtropical New Orleans? well, we will set it up just outside, in Cajun Country. you get on 10 & go west. or even go the other way out of the parish into Chalmette, it could be done. hey, even across the river would make sense.... well, i will make it fit. i insist. i know log cabins go with snow, but mine will be subtropical. & hey, knitting in a log cabin? nice.
13. What is/are your favorite yarn/s to knit with? Giotto is a gift from God... i like Brown Sheep Lamb's Pride for some felting, Cascade 220 from Classic Elite felts like buttah for me. i really like most other Colinettes, Crystal Palace things, especially their ATTITUDE! Cherry Tree Hill Handpaints - Glitter Alpaca, including POSSUM!, Blue Heron Handpaints, i LOVE knitting with Hanah Hand-dyed Silk Ribbons, LOVELYYYY. you will always find Trendsetter Charm & Flora around here. Handpainted novelties from Katsara. i make a lot of gifts, & things like feather & ladder, & freaky individual handspun novelty yarns from great artisans i have found along the way blend well together in doing this. these things all mixed up are super QUICK, & very loved by the recipients. i like a lot of net & sparkle, but i can run the cable & traditional circuit with the best of them. i am working on a revised Clapotis, & am using just a plain Cascade Lana D'Oro in Charcoal Tweed, & do like this yarn, it was so nice, i decided to do that instead of felt with it. i do love Lorna;s Laces, & in particular the Lion & Lamb that is written with, but wanted to use something extra snuggly & mostly charcoal, as it is TOO COLD, & the Lana D'Oro is a luscious wool/alpaca/tweed & a closeout, so i got it for PENNIES on the dollar. i have gotten to my fourth ladder & it has worked beautifully. i do not like to knit tight with lots of color change, too busy for the most part, for me anyhow. i would rather prefer to mix heavily color-transitioned things in with the very plain for just some extra spiciness, or knit them very loosely so i get less color change. & then there is my love for fabulous European Imports, especially from Germany or Spain, who are too numerous to mention.
14. What fibers do you absolutely *not* like?
ok, this is where i will stop & think, because even that icky Chunky USA was good to practice Miss Shethas Illusion Knitting... i do not like scratchy wools, or furry things knit tightly. some of the cheap fibers are ok-looking when you are done, but as soon as you wash them, they pill & look sucky it seems to me. i really do not like those too bright or too pastel things either. if i do color, i like a lot of it sprinkled in really finely, like with micro boucle, or just "marbled" in with very subtle changes like Colinette.
15. What is/are your current knitting obsession/s?
my favorited at the moment is knitting with beads. i have just picked up the basics, & really cannot wait to get that book about it. i think it is called "Knitting & Crocheting with Beads", oddly enough. i am pretty interested in getting into knitting with wire, too. for regular old soft stuff, as i say, i simply ADORE Colinette;s "Giotto", Hanah Silk Ribbons, & Trendsetter;s "Charm" & "Flora". i do a LOT of felting, too, as it seems like such a magical process, even though it has a scientific explanation, & i like to include odd yarns in the mix. knitting with Trendsetter;s "Dune" around sunset in front of the glass, western side of my house is quite a magnificent experience... the sparkle, oh my. ever since it happened to me the first time, i save my "Dune" for then (: i am quite into lace knitting, & am also working out additional motifs for illusion knitting in my spare time. i love knitting things that include some type of metallic, however fine it might be. lastly, i am knitting more frequently with cut & tied fabrics since i got heavy into that technique as a necessity with the silk ribbons.
16. What is/are your favorite item/s to knit?
i really enjoy making fancy fancy purses with uncommon handles or closures, & i try to always do something nifty with the linings. i am working with the automatic lights for purses, (like the dome light in your car), & hand dyed velvet linings. i am looking more into home furnishings & accessories, but edgy, very non-traditional things.
17. What are you knitting right now?
QUITE a bit... as you can see, i finally got some knitting photos up there. besides those, i am doing the Knitty Clapotis in alpaca/wool/tweed, several purses, & am trying to design a sweater for our fat bunny.
18. What do you think about ponchos?
as i am in the DDD-bust club & super short, these are not for me. i prefer shawls, plus, one can throw them around one;s neck or over one;s shoulder really dramatically & saunter off. cannot do that with a poncho. a cape, which is a totally different thing, is actually flattering on me. i do, however, appreciate that the resurgence of poncho popularity has spawned the demand & creation of SOOO many incredible yarns, & renewed an interest in knitting, & i just hope that when the ponchos fly the coop, the knitters will stick around.
19. Do you prefer straight or circular needles?
straight, 14-inch so that i can hold one stable with the outside of my thigh against the recliner, & zip along only having to "hold" one needle.
20. Bamboo, aluminum, plastic?
ADDI TURBO for anything on circulars. the world should be made of nickel-plated brass, if you ask me!!! Aluminum straight needles for anything up to US#10, & plastic for US10.5 & up--- Bamboo of Bryspun for ANY small DPN between US#1-15-- & steel for dpn US#0 & below.
21. Are you a sock knitter?
yes, actually.
22. How did you learn to knit?
i lived the "Amish" life as a child in Germany, & there was PLENTY of knitting going on. that is why i learned early, age 3 or so, & fast with the Shetland Style.
23. How old is your oldest UFO?
a year or so? i HATE doing FRINGE!!!
24. What is your favorite animated character or a favorite animal/bird?
i LOVE BATS!!! i LOVE BATS!!!!!!!! i love cute bat things, i have a HUGE collection, & there is never enough. i adore the smooth, red Dachshund, & miss my own very much. if i could take one thing to heaven or to a deserted island, it would be a dog. i do not feel whole without one. i like Hello Kitty a lot, not any of the special editions, just regular, pink or red ol' Hello Kitty. (: i also like the Batman Logo. i like snails, & have a snailquarium, but others, especially other gardeners, do NOT like them, although, do you notice they make a lot of garden decor in snail motifs? hmmmmm.
25. What is your favorite holiday?
MY BIRTHDAY, 18 November!!!!!!! i LOVE Mardi Gras, but being in the great lakes is not quite great for it, especially today, MARDI GRAS~~~~ ): i would have, in the past said New Year;s as well, but, again, it is more boring here, & my Husband has SUCH an incredible family, i have really grown fond of Christmas, as it is so warm & loving being with them.
26. Is there anything that you collect?
CUTE bats, Hello Kitty, Batman Logo stuff, cute snail things for my garden.


SP4 & Sable.

...anxiously awaiting my Secret Pals 4 assignment! i have to get to the question thingy... tonight, i promise! (: in the meantime... isn;t she LOVELY??? would be nice if i could get some knitting photos up here, huh?
Sweet sable.


moving along...

have got a thrillion things on my needles. i have read these things for so long, but i always wonder, "who wants to see my half-finished stuff?". even though i enjoy looking at that of others. i guess later when i am off work i will get some photos together & get this thing moving along. everything gets finished, i guess it just makes me feel like the "short attention span knitter" to admit to how many different things are in the works at once. another thing i have been pondering.... i wonder how many others have how many hanks of yarn that are a "just bit too tangled for the moment" hanging on how many doorknobs around their homes... that they will, of course, get to later? (: & i have to do more looking-into on this left-handed thing. it really annoys me... where are they all? everything i have ever read just implores me to be sensible & learn or switch to right, not so helpful if you already have been knitting for years the OTHER way!!!!!! i can knit either, but it just feels RIGHT to me to knit left-handed, so i always have... but i find next to nothing in searches. ?


Gretchen -- 29 July 1989 - 06 January 2004.

my Gretch.

knitting straw into red diamonds...


well, today;s the day, Gretch. sucks as much as i thought it would. i sure do miss you... every day. if it were not for knitting & Sable, i would be totally lost. here is a photo from the good old days... before you were even grey! that Easter morning we caught you trying AGAIN to steal gum from my purse, & how you tried to get out of it. it worked, as usual.

i am trying to stuff in another FUN Thing, so i am trying this
Secret Pals 4 exchange for knitters, & i hope i meet some great people. i made the decision to do this today, & realized i had to update this thing... & so, what on earth ELSE could i write about today than you, my wiggly weasel?

i hope the folktale is true, & that every tear shed was a bone for you in heaven...
...at this rate you will need a backhoe to get yourself out. so... i get the last laugh. (:

i love you always, Hot Dog.
(wishing RePet was REAL!),



these things are so mysterious, i almost feel like this would be the best, functional description of the space. now that i am done typing & my fingers are painfully frozen in only early OCTOBER, it is off to finish the ABSOLUTELY Fabulous blanket. actually, "work on" is more like it. it is quite a haul, especially since i did not use circs. i still have to rip back to missing row #42. (eek) actually, before i leave the machine, i have to AMEND page #2 of my clever, (yet faulty), table, which happened to be MISSING R #42, print out a new one, BURN the old one, kill everyone who knows about it, attach the corrected page #2, & THEN rip back 6 more rows or so from where i stopped ripping last night... think i lost only 12 R in all, not bad. isn;t "42" the answer to the secret of life or the mystery of the universe or something silly like that, as told in that Hitchhikers; book that everyone is always so damned jaw-dropped that i have never read? coincidence? hah. Colinette is a dream, as always. it is just gorgeous. though it must go to a fairly petless home, however. here is what it will look like... in as much as an ACTUAL photo would be less insulting to the audience.