Saturday, October 20, 2007


This semester, I may have bitten off more than I care to chew. I'm taking 20 semester hours so I can graduate this spring. There are a lot of projects due at the end of the semester, which will wreak havoc on my knitting time. And with the holidays coming I have deadlines. Not only that, but I'm also attempting to make own lace stole from the Second Book of Modern Lace Knitting for my wedding in March. So far, I only have abou 1.5 inches done. And hopefully with the help of some knitting friends I might have a knit bouquet as well.
So all this homework is really cramping my style. Now that I have class again on Tuesday nights & work on Saturday afternoons I don't even get to meet with my usual S&B at Wild Fibre. Sigh. I know that there's a group that meets on Mondays at the Savannah Mall, but that's only every other week & it seems like something always comes up.
At for least next semester I only need 7 hours to fishish all my requirements. Then it's on to grad school, wherever that may be.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Wedding Updates

OK, so now that I'm engaged, I want to make damn near everything for my wedding. Since I made a garter for my BFF's sister, well, why not make one for myself? I think to myself, "gee real flowers are soo damn expensive & they just die anyway. Artificial flowers are OK, but hey, why not a knitted bouquet?" So now I have a committee of friends from mu S&B group brainstorming about it. And a veil? Well, instead how 'bout a shawl. So that's where I am now. I ordered the cashmere from ColourMart UK, and oh happy day, they goofed & sent me not one, but 2 cones on white laceweight cashmere! The wrote me an e-mail telling me to keep it with their complements! Score!

Monday, September 10, 2007

Back in the Saddle

OK so after months of neglect, I decided to give this another go. I'll go into more detail later but during the summer, I got a spinning wheel (the Ashford Joy), learned how to knit socks (thanks Kristin), made a lot of knitted hats (knitting in the round is fun!) & learned the importance of stash (I'm frackin' broke)! Oh & I had a great early surprise birthday party yesterday!

Like I said, I'll go into more later. Right now I have to finish my estuarian plant ecology take-home test before the S & B tomorrow night

Monday, April 16, 2007

Lookit What I Can Do Now!

I recently ordered the Spindolyn from Cathrine Goodwin.

It was totally worth it! I have now discovered the joy of hand-spinning. I even took up that drop spinde I bought a while back. Turns out that it works great! Thanks to the Spindolyn, my drafting has improved and that made spinning on the drop spindle that much easier. I ordered a couple more spindles from a different Ebay vendor, Ma & Pa spindles. Very cheap but work well enough. I got them in a pack that included 2 bottom whorl spindles, one large 1.9-ish oz. an a smaller just over one oz., a small niddy-noddy, which is perfect for my little practice skiens, but not so good for winding larger balls of "blanks" for dyeing. It also came with a small nosetpinne, but honestly I'm not to thrilled with it; it wasn't well sanded before it was lacquered and it too is a bit too small for larger skeins. But overall a good deal, the spindles are good for beginning to spin and very cheap.

I really enjoy spining on hand spindles, but if I want to get into production I'll need a wheel. Any reccomendations?

Saturday, April 7, 2007

I Dyed

Sorry, sorry, I've been terrible blogger! After I came back from Mexico, I had a week to make up all the school work that I missed & then off to Washington state for spring break! And since then, I've been trying to bring up my crap grades. However, while I was in Washington, I looked up the yarn shops of Seattle, Bellingham and the vicinity. I'll post the reviews later.
The purpose of this post is to share my very first dying experience! After reading the Knitty Spring 2007 article on safely dyeing your yarn with food quality dyes I was instantly inspired! I ran out and bought up some McCormick's food coloring as well as some other dyes that I found in the soap and candle making section of A.C. Moore's and a skein of Paton's Merino in white and went to town... in my kitchen.
The purpley- green combo uses the hot-pour method described in the Knitty article using the turquoise, lilac, and rose dyes from the soap dying kit supplemented with the McCormick's red, blue and green dyes. I don't think that I'll use the soap dyes again because I needed to use the entire little squeeze bottle and these dyes didn't seem to penetrate the yarn as well as the food dyes did, hence the small white patches.

The orange was also achieved via the hot-pour method using both McCormick's red and yellow and some of the Wilton's icing dyes, buttercup and Burgundy. I wanted to do a combo of reds, yellows, and oranges, but since I was dying on a natural color (more Paton's merino from my stash) rather than white the yellow didn't look too good.
A note on the Wilton's: at first I didn't have faith. I read the ingredients which included sugar (HFCS) and hydrogenated oils to make it pastey and I thought "eww, won't that make my yarn all gummy?" I figured that the sugar would rinse out, but thickened oils, wouldn't it prevent some of the sugar from washing out? Well, no, it doesn't. The tiny bit of paste added in realtion to all the water in the dye pot isn't much. I believe that the sugars and oils also help the dye penetrate the yarn and helps the dye stay where you poor it, rather than spreading as soon as it hits the water like the soap dyes did. This makes sense considering the loading dyes we use in gel electrophoresis. These dyes are loaded with sucrose the weigh down the dye so that it sinks in the buffer with the DNA. Anyway, I think that I'm hooked on home dying. Etsy, here I come!

Friday, March 2, 2007

I'm back

I just got back from Uxmal on the Yucatan Wednesday night. I got there a day early & figured I'd explore the town/ village maybe even find some indigenous fiber. Guess what? No freakin' town or village! Just a couple hotels & the Mayan ruins! However, the trip had an unexpected treat for my other hobby, herpetology, in the form of free-range rock iguanas! Not much knitting got done. On the plane ride to Mexico, I slept a lot. At the conference I spent most of my time learning about what a crazy metaloid aluminum is, socializing with a small group of scientists all over the world, and trapezing about these ancient Mayan ruins. But the main thing I've been working on is another pair of the garter mitts from One Skein and an improvised matching scarf/sash in the same sock yarn using garter and elongated stitches. They are to be a belated birthday gift for my best friend. Hey, they weren't thought of at the last minute, I just haven't had as much knit time this semester. It sucks. But that's for another blog.

These lovely ladies were found just off of the patio bar, where I was desperately trying to learn some espanol. This was their body-guard.

Regrettably,I didn't bring a swimsuit.This brave one came up to me. I guess people offer them fruit from time to time. I would.
This guy was the unofficial guard of the temple.
This is an ancient Mayan ball court. One of the goals is still in tact on the left.

We didn't get the overpriced tour guide, so I'm sorry I can't provide more interesting and enlightening captions.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Flying the Friendly Skies

Plan on flying with your knitting/ crochet or needle point? No problem according to our friends at the TSA:

Knitting needles are permitted in your carry-on baggage or checked baggage. However, there is a possibility that the needles can be perceived as a possible weapon by one of our Security Officers. Our Security Officers have the authority to determine if an item could be used as a weapon and may not allow said item to pass through security. We recommend the following when bring knitting needles on an airplane:

  • Circular knitting needles are recommended to be less than 31 inches in total length
  • We recommend that the needles be made of bamboo or plastic (Not Metal)
  • Scissors must have blunt points
  • In case a Security Officer does not allow your knitting tools through security it is recommended that you carry a self addressed envelope so that you can mail your tools back to yourself as opposed to surrendering them at the security check point.
  • As a precautionary measure we recommend that you carry a crochet hook with yarn to save the work you have already done in case your knitting tools are surrendered at the checkpoint

Most of the items needed to pursue a Needlepoint project are permitted in your carry-on baggage or checked baggage with the exception of circular thread cutters or any cutter with a blade contained inside. These items cannot be taken through a security checkpoint. They must go in your checked baggage.

Now, what I don't undertand is this statement "As a precautionary measure we recommend that you carry a crochet hook with yarn to save the work you have already done in case your knitting tools are surrendered at the checkpoint." What does this mean exactly? So if you've started a knitting project on 36" steel size 2 needles and they're confiscated in fear that, in a knitterly rage over a stitch dropped when the plane hit an air pocket, you'll garrotte the pilot after stabbing out the flight attendant's eyes for spilling ginger ale on your project that you can simply continue working on said project with a crochet hook?? Do they think knitting and crochet are totally interchangable? Oh that's just ignorant! While I'm bicraftual and I am a strong proponent of knowing both skill sets, I know plenty of knitters who aren't. What are they supposed to do, use the hook as a stitchholder?

Anyway, thank goodness I converted most of my needles to bamboo, except for the Boye needle master cicular set. So I'm going to Mexico for a science conference friday. I hope to find some great yarn there, oh and learn sciencie-stuff too of course.