Friday, March 28, 2008

I'm Dumb!

I figured out my screen shots on my computer. DUUUUUHHHHHH. At times I think I was dropped on my head as a baby.....

So here are the two tops I tried to show the other day from the new Knit.1



I was escorted out of Target!

This is a funny story, really! long, but funny.

I went to Target a few weeks ago. It was a Sunday. The day that the Jovovich-Hawk collection went on sale. I usually make it a point NOT to go to Target on Sundays. I prefer to go on a Tuesday around 10:30. Nobody is ever there. But I had a deal with someone in California regarding the new collection so I headed out. It was a beautiful day. I was feeling up to the Target on Sunday challenge.

Of course when I got there it was packed. It was so crowded that there weren't any carts available. Ok, whatever. I made my way through the entire women's section including shoes and lingerie and sleepwear. I must have had about 20 things to try on. So, off I went to the dressing room. The Target that I go to has the nicest fitting room attendant. She's always there. Unfortunately for me but fortunately for her it must have been her day off. However, in her place was a nice young guy manning the rooms. I knew the rules. 6 items at a time. Leave the rest outside. Ok. In I went with the first 6. My standard operation in the dressing room is to put everything back on the hangers so that the attendant doesn't have to deal. I'm slightly OCD about it. This trip was no differnt. I came out with the old and traded it for new. I did this a few times. Each time I showed the guy what I was doing - not that he was interested. Whatever. OK. The last time I came out I only had 5 pieces so I switched my little plastic number from a 6 to a 5 and went back into the room.

WELL, when I came out my nice boy had been replaced by another guy. This one seemed slightly agitated. A little sweaty and was that a sunburn? anyway, I gave him my garments (beautifully hung on the hangers) and my ticket. He looked at me. Looked through the hangers and spit out that I had FIVE hangers. To which I explained (realizing my mistake) that I had mistakenly put the bikini top and bottom on one hanger. It was supposed to be on two. Hence the extra hanger. MA'AM you have FIVE hangers. "I know, I just explained it to you." MA'AM YOU HAVE 5 HANGERS! D'uh. I know. I've just explained to you why that is. I started to chuckle. I mean DDDDDUUUUUUHHHHH!!!!! This went on for a couple of more rounds when I said "Had I known that I would be dealing with the HANGER NAZI I would have been more careful.....In my defense, I was tired. I had been working a number of nights in row.

He wasn't having it. He told me that that was a derogatory comment and that he could have me kicked out. uh, ok. But you'll have to deal with Larry David and Jerry Seinfeld because they are the ones that put Nazi into our pop culture vernacular with Soup Nazi. Are you kidding???? I collected my things without saying another word and moved on. He in turn got on his walkie talkie and started basically sending out all kinds of signals.

I figured it was over. He was sunburned from a tanning bed and had too much oil clogging his pores and it was a crowded sunday at Target. Let's just leave it at that. I moved on through the mens dept., books, electronics, cut through the kids section and finally made my way to the cosmetics. Because I needed tampons and I'd almost forgotten them. Phwew!

OK, so now I'm loaded down with probably $350 or $400 worth of crap WITHOUT a cart. I mean I am LOADED down! It's been about 15 or 20 minutes since the Hanger Nazi incident. When suddenly, while standing in front of the Bio Silk hair products deciding which ones I want, a security guard comes up to me and first apologizes then says that he has to ask me to leave. WHAT?????? ARE YOU KIDDING? Then I see my sweaty dressing room attendant hiding behind the guard. I said, can I at least pay for this stuff (It was practically up to my chin). He said well it's up to him and points to the red shirted attendant who paused and said NO. I said fine and hoisted my crap on top of him.

Can you believe it? How funny and crazy. I should have reported the guy. He was so out of line. I let him know that I was in the service industry too and if I ever treated someone the way he treated me that I'd probably get fired! He said, have a nice day ma'am. ok. have a nice day ma'am. UGH.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Knit.1 Preview

Well my "Screen Shots" isn't working. Where are they going? Since my computer crashed I can't figure it out. Stuff just disappears. One day I'm going to find a ton of useless things...

Anyway, I was going to show the preview from the new Knit.1. but I can't find where the shots are on my computer???? Check it out. It's the Uptown Downtown section. I think it's the middle shot. Basically the goal was to create the exact same piece i.e. exact same pattern using two different yarns. It's the purple sleeveless top and then after you refresh your screen, it's the mustard top. Cute, right?

Prosecco Elbow aka Tennis Elbow!

There hasn't been much about the night job lately so here's the news:

I have Prosecco Elbow! Crazy, I know. One of our house cocktails contains Prosecco. I open A LOT of bottles throughout the course of a night. And if I work a few nights in a row they really add up. Well, we recently changed to a different winery. The corks in these bottles just won't budge. And since I'm pretty much the only one that deals with making this drink, everyone thought I was just being a baby. Well, I wasn't and now I'm wearing a tennis elbow thing around my forearm. Tennis Elbow is nothing to sneeze at. It REALLY hurts. I have that feeling that you get after you run a marathon and you need to go down a flight of stairs. Your legs feel like they have the flu. It is so painful and uncomfortable. That's how my arm feels...from my elbow on down. OUCH!!!! I iced it non stop until I had to go to work today. I'm hoping to keep icing it while I sleep.

Anyway, I have one full repeat finished on the VK project. It's kind of fun. I was getting my hair cut today and forgot my cable needle so I borrowed some hair salon doo-dad that worked just fine. I have to measure gauge and all in the morning...just to be sure I'm on track.

I need to go to sleep now.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Stitch Books & Swatches

So, I ordered those books last week. Guess what...they didn't have the cables/stitches that I was looking for.

So I got serious today about this project and went out to look for what I needed. I ended up at Knitty City. I bought the Stitchionary from Vogue - Volume Two Cables.

It had exactly what I needed for one of the panels of the sweater that I'm charting out. Yay! It's hard to see my swatch but it does in fact look like the picture...always a good thing!

Next up is this simple pattern. I found it in a number of books but I ended up buying The Harmony Guides 250 stitches Cables & Arans. It's the newer books from Interweave. I love this book. I've never even looked at it because I have all of the harmony guides. I'm not sure if there are new cables in it or just the same ones photographed in color and charted out. Anyway, I found 4 different cables that I need in this one book. Sweet!

Simple. Hard to see.

Believe it or not I couldn't find this pretty obvious cable. I was really having a tough time but there it was in the Harmony book. I should look more closely in my old Harmony Guides. hmm.

The yarn that I'm using for this project is Wool BamBoo from Classic Elite. I like it. I'm using size 6 needles. So once I get all the gauges worked out I should be able to whip this out in no time. Oh I also bought Bryspun straights today just because they were there and I've never used them before. I like them too.

All in all a very productive, successful knitting day.

The fire smell if officially out of my apartment. I didn't get insurance today but it's on the top of my to do list.

Sunday, March 23, 2008


I got home from work pretty early last night. I was just chit chatting and watching a little tv. Around 2am there was a loud knock on the door. And I started hearing loud sirens. Usually, and maybe this is a post 9/11 thing, I wait to hear the sirens pass by - which always happens. But not last night.

I went to the front door to see what was going on and all of my neighbors were making their way down the stairs. The smoke was just beginning to fill the hallways. I ran back inside. Threw on my clothes. Woke everybody up. And tried to go back into the hallway to get out. It felt like it had been no more than 3 minutes but the hallways were black. I couldn't even see my hands. And I couldn't breathe. So I went back inside and headed for the fire escape. Opened up the window and started to go down. I realized that I should probably grab one of my "cans of cash". So I hopped back through the window and got the tin can. On my way back out I saw a bunch of yarn that COULD NOT SMELL LIKE SMOKE. So in an instant of clarity I covered the bags with some towels and flew out the window!

We all got to the end of the fire escape only to find that the brilliant landlord/super had painted it one too many times and we couldn't get down from the second story. It was stuck. Can you imagine? It was impossible to pass. Below us were about 6 or 7 fire trucks, a few ambulances, our neighbors, firemen, police officers, camera crews and onlookers. It was crazy and loud and unnerving. Luckily, the fire was on the other side of the building so we were ultimately safe but holy crap! We never had to get out of the building.

We came back up stairs to find our apartment pretty stinky from the smoke. We quickly sealed ourselves in and tried desperately to air it out - using the post 9/11 hepa filters, fans etc. GROSS. It smells like there was a bonfire in here!

I finally got to bed around 5. Only to be up again at 7:30. I have all of my Jo Malone candles burning - I hope they don't start a fire! I have yet to investigate the damage to the building. The fire dept. smashed so many windows to get at it. Already I can see plywood covering some of the broken windows.

But we are all safe and sound. And my yarn doesn't stink!

Maybe for the last 10- years I have thought about apartment insurance like once every month or so. I have quotes in a file. It's super cheap. But for some reason I've never signed up. I guess I shouldn't play with fire and tempt the fates....I'll be getting it tomorrow. The thought of losing all of my stuff for absolutely no good reason is horrifying. Lesson Learned....

Happy Easter.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Rebecca No. 2 Special Edition

I made this top a year or two ago as a gift for someone. It is pretty cute and very simple. Back then I used Soft Kid as the pattern calls for.

I've been asked to make it again. But this time she would like it to be a dress. The entire piece is made in Fisherman's Rib or Brioche st. Very easy. Very pretty. I'm concerned that it will look gross over the butt. But I'm not sure. Her body is very up and down. Not too many curves. Very slim. It could look great.

I'm using Calmer. This yarn is great because it has some spring to it but still gives the feeling of cotton. It's not too heavy. It's not too thick. So I'm going to give it a try.

I have to get a move on the Vogue Knitting project. I'll be laying out the cables this morning and then I'll start swatching. All of my books have arrived and I think I have what I need to figure this out!!

Happy Easter!

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

3x2 sweater finished...

All of the pieces had a lovely wash in Tocca's gentle favorite! Then I sewed it all together. Actually I only had to set in the sleeves and sew the sleeves closed. The body was knit in one piece and the collar was picked up....

Ok my thoughts:

So it's the Loro Piano cashmere/mohair blend that you can only get wholesale. It's the most amazing yarn ever but totally not available to the lowly handknitter. At least I've never been able to find it. This sweater is light and soft and warm.

Once it was blocked the ribbing was a little uh loose. So I shored up the bottom ribbing by adding a ribbon around the row where the stitch pattern changed to stockinette. It's a cute Burberry ribbon that I bought at M&J Trimmings around Christmas. I used it to wrap presents. It's a little hard to see and it's a temporary solution. I think I'll make 2 icords with a little something on the ends. Cuter than the ribbon - I think.

Sleeve length is perfect. Body length is perfect. What's not so perfect is the collar. Why oh why do I alway second guess my collars? I always pick up stitches with ws facing so that the seam faces out and is covered by the collar. Not this time. I can see the seam/picked up stitches. I HATE THAT. I'm sure it's not the end of the world but DON'T DO IT!

All in all it's a cute sweater. I would totally check out the wearer of it if I saw it walk by. I'll wear it a time or two then probably pack it away or use it for a magazine submission - fixing the problems of course!

Oh and I kind of like the split collar in the back....

Off to work....

Monday, March 17, 2008

My Revised Cabled Beret

I think these pictures are a little better than the one a few days ago. I pretty much love this hat. I haven't had the chance to actually wear it outside yet but inside it's been lovely!



Other side:

I have 10 or so inches finished on sleeve number one of the 3 x 2 ribbed sweater. It's moving pretty fast. I swatched a little for the VK project. I'm having some issues with one of the sections. I think I just need to find the stitch pattern that's going to work. I'll do that tomorrow.

Friday, March 14, 2008

I don't know

Obviously there are some problems here...But it's a whole lot better than ribbing on the hips. I guess I'll work up some sleeves and see where it's coming out.....

I missed the book delivery today so I have another day to work on this then it's kaput for a while. Can I make two sleeves in one day? I'm guessing NO WAY!

I was supposed to be at a wedding tonight so I took the night off but a small medical situation came up and now I'm just home enjoying my free night. All is well. I'm sorry to be missing the wedding but I'm watching There Will Be Blood and knitting.

Have a nice weekend.

Let's try it again

I'm not going to show you my "button band" attempt. A very lame attempt to fix the reconstituted sweater. However, my lame attempt has prompted another brilliant idea (hahaha). I think I'm going to have a closure at the top end of the ribbing then pick up and knit a very wide collar. I'm going to make a split in the collar at the center back...for 2 reasons....1 - I think it will look great and 2 - in case it looks like dog doo I've only wasted 1/2 as much time. But I'm feeling good about this. I really want to get this finished so that when my books arrive I can get crackin' on the VK project.

Speaking of VK, I read on someone's blog last night how much they HATED one of my designs. It was really kind of mean. I don't think that everyone understands the process of magazine or editorial knitting. Sometimes a publisher will pick a submitted design as is. They will provide the yarn. It may or may not be the yarn that you sampled it in due to their commitment to advertisers or others. There might be changes to the design either on the publishers part or on your part due to the revised yarn being used. Or that they simply want a modified version of your submission. Other times the publisher will provide you with a swatch and yarn and you interpret that swatch as best you can. You knit a sample and write the pattern. Sometimes the swatches are gorgeous and sometimes they aren't. It your choice as a designer to take the job or not. I'm obviously speaking for yarn companies, magazines, books, etc. The process is all pretty similar. Once you complete the sample and write the pattern for the sample you have to grade that pattern to fit a very large range of sizes (possibly a bust measurement size ranging from 32 through possibly 50 or 52) while keeping the integrity of the design. Not always an easy task. I've spoken about this in the past so I won't here. Most of the time it works. However there are times when it doesn't. As knitters we have to understand our bodies and our experience and pick appropriate projects.

I think it is extremely unnecessary to hack away at another designers work, publicly. Of course there are plenty of times where I think a design is shit. It's my job to read through a pattern and decide my course. Knit as is or make changes. I think it's important to take responsibility for my work. If I'm not so confident I'll pick easier projects. If I want a challenge I'll pick a challenging one. But that's my choice and if I don't like the results it's my fault.

Anyway, it just sort of sucked the way this person was talking about my work. I'm pretty thick skinned but in general I think everyone should think before they "speak" on the internet. I've seen it happen so many times where the snarky comments snowball and someone's work is completely trashed for no good reason. It's just mean spirited behavior.

Well, I'm off to rip out some useless knitting!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008


I still had that wide ribbed sweater on my mind. I ripped it out down to the beginning of the stockinette section. I shortened it considerably. There is about 4" of st. st. after the ribbing. Which means there is NO RIBBING ON THE HIPS!! Then I separated for the armholes. Worked each section and here I am. Now what should I do? I could make a placket for the top stockinette section. That would work. And then finish off with my long collar??? right? Whip up some sleeves and done.


My Anthropologie Inspired Capelet

Shouldn't this be a shrug? Anyway....

It looks better in real life. This photo stinks.

Clearly it's not in the yarn that I made the beret out of. Instead I used exactly 2 skeins of Malabrigo lace in Applewood. I quadrupled it! I used size 11's. Followed the pattern pretty closely. I worked a bunch more rows of the body because it seemed kind of short. But other than that I don't think I changed anything else. Super fast and simple.

This is exactly what I needed. I cannot believe how light it is. It seems like it should be much much heavier - 4 strands held together? Come on! But it's super light. Crazy.

I also fixed my beret. I'm not sure you can see any difference but believe me there is. I did the creepy thing of cutting off the ribbing, grabbing all of the loose stitches and knitting down. It's not a great feeling when you're trying to get all of those stitches on the needle but holy cow it's nice when it works. I shortened the ribbing by about an inch. It was close to 3 or 3.5" but now it's about 1.5". I love this thing! I might have to make another one!

I can't start the Vogue project because I'm waiting on some stitch books to be delivered. I can't find my Barbara Walker books. Plus I ordered one of the Harmony guides. So, while I'm waiting I think I'm going to knit something else....But what should it be? There's a dress in the latest Rebecca that I'm going to make. I told Taryn at Downtown Yarns that I would. She's making it too. I have a bag of Calmer (which is what she's making hers out of) just ready to go so maybe I'll start that tomorrow... or maybe I'll make a sweater based on the one from a few days ago. I'm not quite finished with the long ribbing idea. Maybe the sweater will be way shorter so no butt/hips are involved...

More to come...

Monday, March 10, 2008

EEk, I don't have anything to wear!

I'm so lame. I'm resorting to jumping on the band wagon. I am going to a wedding on Friday and it's freezing. I'm worried that I'll be cold. So I guess it's the Anthropologie Inspired Capelet for me. I'm definitely not in love with this but it will work just fine. I can probably whip it up tonight and be done with it. Hmmm, I wonder if I can use the yarn that I made that beret out of.

I might borrow the pattern from here...

Why reinvent the wheel, right?

Maybe I should try this again!

There's nothing quite like having a k3, p2 fabric hugging your hips for oh about 9 inches. Though I whipped this out in no time. It blows. I've already ripped it out.

Next up....I'm going to snip the ribbing off of the beret I made the other day and tighten it up. My crochet "quick fix" just isn't really very nice. I love the over sized top. So I'm going to fix it. I'll show you then.

Saturday, March 08, 2008

Fashion Show on You Tube

Hopefully you can click on the link below and check out the f/w 08 fashion show of Tom Scott. I did all of the hand knits. They are hard to see but as a whole you can see the direction!

Getting Back In The Saddle

I'm trying to get back into the blogging mind set. Photos. Ideas. It's been so hard to do anything because every free moment seemed to be needed for knitting.

The other day I dropped off all of the extra yarn I had sitting in my apartment to Tom Scott. What a nice way to get rid of a giant, messy, yarn filled corner! I picked up a check !! and then made my way down to Vogue Knitting. Picked up 30 balls of yarn and a contract. Then somehow I ended up at Downtown Yarns...I literally had not been in that store for over a year. Anyway, I made up for it. I bought some amazing local yarn. It's called Jefferson Valley. Gorgeous. Solar Spun. Natural colors. And the sheep's name was MOOSE. He was old and is apparently not with us any longer. Yesterday I got up and made this cute cabled beret. It's blocking at the moment. It was a little big around the ribbed bottom so I crocheted it a bit tighter. SUPER CUTE. And I love this yarn. I hope they make more of it. The beret took 2 skeins (I double it) so I have 6 brown/black left and then 4 grey/black skeins.

I started swatching some cashmere/mohair yarn for a sweater. I think I'm going to knit a long rib on the sleeves, collar and bottom of the cardigan. It will be long. Maybe have a belt. I'm thinking of a 3 x 2 rib. There's something about it that I like???

I'm kind of thinking about this. Sorry it's so blurry. I drew it on a receipt at work last night. So I had to blow it up. The collar would be super big, high, dramatic.

And this is more the color of the yarn. It's so soft and gorgeous. When it's washed it blooms up so beautifully!

That's about it. I went to a couple of yarn stores yesterday in search of some cable stitch patterns for the Vogue project. I can't find my stitch books anywhere. I've swatched a little for this and the yarn is pretty fantastic. More to come on that.

Have a nice weekend.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Hello, is this on?

Where did I go????

It looks like I've been MIA since October????

I can't come up with any reasonable explanation for my absence. I've been knitting every day (almost) since I was last here. And I've been Bartending most of those days too. So not too much has changed. I've just been super busy.

My new job (from last aug/sept) keeps me busy. I don't make as much money as I did before so I have to work more days. Plus there is definitely NO KNITTING at this job. Which means my actual knitting hours have been dramatically reduced. Which blows.

I finished all of the fall production pieces for Tom Scott. It was nightmarish but I finished it all with all body parts intact!! And a firm understanding that I despise production knitting. Then came the spreadsheet for spring production. I thought I would be really smart and farm it out with knitters that wanted to make a little (very little) extra money. What is it with people (except my sister). I mean, people just totally flaked. A couple people needed like 3 months to knit a simple little cardigan... I'm not judging but when I put out a call for production knitters don't respond if you really can't do it. That's all. Some got the yarn and then didn't complete the piece...I could go on. I ended up with more of a mess than when I started. While all of this was going on Fashion Week was looming in the near distance. I had to design a ton of hand knits for Tom Scott's collection. Of course the new pieces were infinitely more interesting than the production stuff. AND I had those supposed helpful production knitters.....Anyway, it all got done (Fashion Week). I hurt my hands really badly and was ultimately unable to work on the spring pieces. I felt horrible about it but I had to lay off the needles. Weird. It made me feel like I was the flake!

While laying off the needles I finished up a piece for VK Fall, I think. I dropped it off the other day. I was officially finished with all of my deadline knitting. It was the first time in a while. But of course while I was at the VK offices I agreed to a new sweater. I'm picking up the yarn later today! Obviously my hands are feeling better.

This is one of the tank tops for Spring....I finally got a realistic photo of it.

I didn't get many photos of the new Fall pieces. I basically just forgot to photograph them. But here is one of the scarves. It's about 80" long and maybe 12 or 13" wide. It's 4 strands of EcoWool using size 35 needles!!

This is a coat that's worked side to side. It's a square. There is a giant cable on the back between the armholes. It looked amazing on the models.

Oh and this is another storyline from the collection. This is a crazy scarf but there was a hat and sweater that went with it. There are 3 different yarns being used...wook, silk bias tape and a patent leather tape...crazy.

This is the Twinkle Dress from the last VK magazine. A sweet 12 year old girl made it with a little modification help from me. She shortened the sleeves and the length. And she used different yarn than was suggested. And she added the ribbons. Super cute on. Better than it looks here!

Hopefully I'll be back more often.