Saturday, March 31, 2007

Post 56

Ok, so lately I've realized again that there are people out there who read my blog, and that it's starting to look messy, so give some time to clean it up. On my list, updated those pesky project bars, because they are really old. Give me the weekend on do a little spring cleaning and then I'll tell you about some black cashmere I recently cam across, for free! Ah the suspense.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Post 55

The NYC/Manhattan Yarn Crawl

Annie and Co. is an embroidery shop, I forgot to take a picture of String, it wasn't worth it. This place is cool if you like the other needle arts, and Bette Midler is known to visit.

Knitty City, where I bought a skein of Fleece Artist sock yarn with seacell and a copy of Wild Fibers magazine.
Purl Soho, small but really packs it in. I need to get the name of this yarn that I feel in love with but didn't buy, did get two skeins of Koigu to make a scarf with.

The Point, I didn't get anything here but a Mocha and biscotti. We had a nice time resting our feet and listening the knitting group that filtered in later.

Knit NY (I think). I came away with a the locking green row counter and Habu paper purse kit. Had a cute coffee shop and chatted with a knitter making her first socks on size 13's, yea that no typo.

This is just the hallway at Seaport Yarns, there are many many rooms on both sides bursting with yarn. I finally found the new VK there and picked up a couple of Cherry Tree Hill skeins.

Schoolhouse Products a great first store to go to, if I didn't already have a cheap source for cashmere, I would get it here. Came away with a skein of hand-dyed cashmere boucle for a scarf.

Habu, very small, kind of cramped to move around in, I bought my Habu kit elsewhere, but just around the corner from SchoolHouse, so why not go?

Post 54

Ok, so about New York, what can I say? I LOVED IT. I think I'm loving it more and more everyday, and I'm no longer there. I visited NYC once when I was 14, of that visit I remember the Empire States Building, a horse carriage ride in Central Park, ice skating in Rockefeller Center and visiting my dads cousin at work, in one of the towers, but that was a kids memory of the city. Going back when your an adult, everything is different. I think my impressions of the city are different because I live in a large city myself, now, so the constant noise and traffic, is normal. There's a trade-off between Manhattan and Chicago, where Manhattan kicks our ass is in their mass transit system, but then we Chicagoans have no trouble walking the streets here because we don't have trash piling up all over the place, you win some, you loss some. Of the YarnHarlot lecture, well that was as expected, very funny, very big and a nice excuse to go on this trip. If you're a knitter I would recommend letting the yarnstores be the anchoring points for visiting the different neighborhoods. Linda and I went to 8 yarn stores over the weekend, yes, 8, and each in a different area. We went downtown, uptown, upper east, upperwest, soho, gramercy park, and the west village. If you want to read a more detailed version go to Linda's blog, she wrote up a little something for our guild newsletter, and if you want to see pictures, check out I'm still in the slow process of writing the details, there are alot of pictures of yarn stores, central park, the Dakota and food. (yea, I'm weird) Speaking of the Dakota and the city, now that I've been there and walked around it ALOT, I find myself watching TV shows, movies and reading books that take place in the city and trying to figure out where that is and if I went there. I'm really fascinated with the history, I even checked out where the Gangs of New York storyline took place, which was a couple of blocks east of Seaport Yarns. I usually keep a movie in my vhs player at night and fall asleep to a it, I think I'm going to have to dig up The Age of Innocence, it takes place there, albeit 1oo years ago. More perks of the trip beside some awesome sock yarn is that I met Guido from It's a Purl, Man, I had never listened to his podcast, so I'm starting from episode 1. On the otherhand, during our conversation I casually mentioned I had met Franklin of The Panopticon, so he was a little envious. As naive as this sounds, what the trip taught me, was not to be ashamed to be a knitter, to live and breathe it. We all need a hobbie to keep ourselves occupied and at least by making something there's a tangible record of your existence. I'm dork eh?

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Post 53

I am back from a whirlwind long weekend in Manhattan and my feet are tired! Too much to talk about right now, but take alook at my flickr pictures and new video of a industrial knitting machine at youtube, search under yarnsnob.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Post 52

4 days and counting until I will be having the ultimate weekend, fun, fiber and friends in the big apple, yea! I've been practicing my latte art at work, it's taking me awhile to get the hang of it, I will in general make one attempt a day and then drink said beverage at my desk. For those of you who didn't know, I work for a coffee company, and while many of my co-workers will make several lattes until the art work is just right, I feel guilty about wasting the milk, heck I'm even practicing on tradition Italian lattes which are half the size of the standard American, just so I get two tries, but it sure is fun. Not bad for someone in the accounting department eh?

I have the nicest neighbor, Big John as I call him, just came back from a trip to New Mexico and brought me this:

Like I told him, I try to get things that are native to the area and you can't get anymore native than this. It is quite itchy so it won't be a hat or garment, it's destined to be one kick-ass Fair Isle/Bohus messed up pillow, I'm thinking the kind where you make an over sized square, draw the corners together and then just seam down the sides, no messing with lining etc. This yarn is hand spun from organic Churro yarn, oh and a churro looks like this:
The history of the animals in the southwest goes back the early Spaniards. I have six skeins in total, each with approximately 175 yards I think, two are natural, two are dyed with Osage orange/yellow, one with cochineal (poor little buggies) and the last two with Osage orange/yellow over bacterial indigo, oh and all the dyes are organic/natural. How nice was that of him? I thought that my camel yarn and Himalayan silk were in the running for most exotic, but this stuff beats them, well until I go to New York, who knows what pretties I will find there! Tomorrow I have a private lesson, back around x-mas this woman bought two hours of my time to teach her granddaughter the basics of mittens so we finally found the time. This lucky girl has a family friend with an alpaca farm in Wisconsin that is going to give her as much yarn as she wants to make mittens and stuff out of and then they will sell them for her, lucky little &^#@%! I recommended that the grandmother buy her the Handbook of Patterns book, AKA the green book because it has the best way to make multiple sizes with various stitches per inch, nothing else will cover the basics like that, and once you make your first one you can play with color, patterns and other stuff. I think afterwards I will head over to the movie theaters and catch a show, 300 or Premonition?

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Post 52

I want my hour back! Damn you Bush, another reason to hate you, I wasn't ready yet, it happened to soon. Kind of odd for an oil guzzling president to sign an energy bill to push ahead daylight savings one month in order to save energy. Odd. Oh Yea FIMS is down so the blogging will be somewhat erratic.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Post 51

New York City, or BUST! Yup, I'm going to the big apple. I've always wanted to do a weekend in New York and the right occasion, the right amount and the right travel companion all seem to come together at the right time. So Linda and I are going to see the YarnHarlot at FIT on March 22nd, yea for us, we tried to get other people to go but I don't think anyone had faith in our ability to do it cheap. Linda got the discount for us on United using some coupon and we aren't even sitting in the crappy section, just the next to crappy section. I though the hostel thing wasn't going to work out, but you must have faith, I did, and I found us a bunkbed room in the Midtown/Gramercy Park area. For airfare and hostel the trip is only going to cost me less than $250, what the hell? you say. Yup, we got fucking lucky! I wish there were more SNB Chicago/Wickerpark people going but they'll just have to make do with pictures. We have no preconcieved plans made other than the YarnHarlot lecture, maybe MoMA, some yarns stores and maybe The Frick? museum, the city is open for us to explore. I'm using this experience for as a test for the planning of my trip to the UK in October. Right now my belief is to travel right before (i.e. my week in Montreal/Quebec) and right after the tourist season, prices are cheaper.

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Post 50

This is the best winter yet! It snows alittle, it melts, it snows alittle again, it melts, and just when you think spring is around the corner, you find yourself in a life size snowglobe, so pretty, lately the snow has been big pretty chunky stuff and real snowflake snow, ahh. I've been a busy little bee, Anne and I finished up out class at Northwestern, it went very well and not one student was all thumbs, they grasped the knitting concept so well that I think they will actually keep it up. I also just did my second beginning knitting class for the City of Chicago's Winter Delight Stitching Salon, and while the class was full as of a couple of weeks ago, only 5 people remembered to come so it was even better than the first, much more intimate and hands on. So on the side I have done some repair work for a customer of a LYS, people please, when someone gifts you with a handknit shawl from New Zealand, so not let your friends dog eat a chunk out of it! BEFORE and AFTER, yea what a mess. I also started to make another pair of socks while waiting for my next project to come in the mail, this is the first sock, on and I broke down and bought sockblockers because it makes photographing so much easier. I finally got my Palette Cardigan kit from Knitpicks, and I'm missing two colors, arghhh. I won't even tell you what happened but it basically comes down to a poorly designed website, so in the end I'll be getting those two balls free of charge, eventually. I started the cardigan and have been happy with it so far, it helps that some time ago I came across a Norwegian fair isle tool that you keep on your index finger and it holds two colors of yarn, basically it's a metal coil. So instead of having to use both hands while knitting, I can just do it the continental way, yea! I'm also glad to find a Palette Cardigan KAL and since this is my first fair isle it will be very helpful. This is a poor quality video I sht of me unboxing the yarn, I just couldn't wait until the next morning when I would have more daylight bouncing off the pile of snow in front of my apartment and into the living room. So that's it in a nutshell unit my FIMS is up again, I'm at Panera and the roommate is getting restless. Oh and here's a Pie in the box.