One Planet Knitters Knitalong

Posted on | September 8, 2007 | 5 Comments

The deadline knitting should be winding down soon for me. After that, I have one more project to do, but nothing lined up beyond that. It’s a little strange. On the one hand, I really need to get my butt in gear and look for a day job. On the other hand, I’m feeling very ambivalent about not having knitting work in the queue. It seems like knitting for hire comes in spurts and starts – there are times when there’s nothing to do and times when there’s more than you can handle. And I must admit, having my hands busy with knitting helped distract me from the distressing reality of unemployment.

So the scorecard is…I’m finishing up 2 projects for a magazine. The instructions for the 3rd project I have in Yahaira’s Pure Knits book are turned in and my wonderful sample knitter is finishing up the knitting for it.

Meanwhile, I’m staring at some lovely Radiance from One Planet Yarn and Fiber. It’ll become the Sunshine Tank,

One Planet has set up a great knitalong space where people can post and share projects carried by the shop. Many of their designers will also frequent the KAL as it gets underway, so it’s a great place to get help and feedback too.

Doing a Penelope

Posted on | August 21, 2007 | 5 Comments

I swear, I feel like Penelope these days — knitting, ripping out, re-knitting. I’ve been working on the same 7 inches for the past 2 days. Good news is that I think I’m finally past it – although decisions still need to be made for the rest of the piece. Sorry about the necessarily indistinct picture.

I just turned in a project for One Planet which I’ve been told will be released in the fall. So hopefully, I’ll have a project to show here very soon. It’s made out of the charcoal Lanas Puras fingering weight merino I’ve blogged about before.

In a first for me, Stephanie of Unwindknitting has graciously agreed to knit the sample for my third Pure Knits project. It’s a little weird to not be knitting the sample myself, especially since I often work out design issues as I’m knitting, but Stephanie is a talented knitter (just take a gander at her beautiful work) and I feel really lucky that she’s helping me.

Feeling totally lame…

Posted on | August 12, 2007 | 10 Comments

…about having a knitting blog without actually showing any knitting, I’m going to post some info on an old project I finished 2 years ago.

Yes, that’s a mistake in the first row of elongated hexagons where I somehow skipped a stitch, shifting everything. I didn’t notice it until the stole was blocked. And I didn’t do the border. I like my shawls rectangular and free of frills, but if I had to do it over again, I would probably widen it by one column of motifs to compensate for the fact that it lacks an edging.

It’s been stuffed in a drawer for the past 2 years. I think I’ve used it once. And it sorely needs a good reblocking.


Posted on | August 3, 2007 | 8 Comments

OK, here we go…

1) My favorite ice cream flavor is Baskin Robbin’s Mint Chocolate Chip – green, florescent dye and all. I prefer it over all of the other, more gourmet versions of the flavor. I think it’s the chocolate “chips”. They’re thinner, almost gone before they hit your tongue.

2) In my first year of grad school, I was able to say that I had been to 5 schools in 6 years. Three for undergrad (although to be fair, one was only for 2 weeks) and 2 for grad school. Needless to say, I was a wee bit indecisive back then.

3) I cry without fail every time I watch the Fox and the Hound, especially the scene where Widow Tweed leaves Todd in the forest and Todd doesn’t quite understand what’s happening.

4) I never learned how to swim. In fact, in high school I joined the badminton team in order to get out of the swimming section of gym class. And I didn’t apply to MIT because they have a swimming requirement.

5) I knit in the English style. My grandmother first taught me how when I was 6 or 7. Despite some people’s best efforts to get me to change to continental, I just can’t do it. It feels really weird to me and I can’t maintain an even tension. Still, I need to get to it someday, it really seems to be the better way (speed-wise, etc) to knit.

6) As a kid, I loved the House on the Prairie Series by Laura Ingalls Wilder – especially her detailed descriptions of family feasts. Whenever I had a McDonald’s Caramel sundae, I would pretend the caramel sauce was maple syrup and the soft serve ice cream was snow. Laura Ingalls Wilder fans will know what I mean…

7) A Wrinkle in Time made me want to be a physicist. I read it when I was 8.

8) I hate celery cooked, but like it okay raw (especially if peanut butter is involved).

Hmmm, so who to tag? If they haven’t done it yet and want to, I’ll tag Iris, Angela, Stephanie, Veronique, Lisa, Melissa, Gryphon, and Stephanie.

Published (in my other life)…

Posted on | July 31, 2007 | 11 Comments

Physical Review B

Not much new here, working under a slog of deadlines…


Posted on | July 23, 2007 | 7 Comments

A while back, my brother gave me a cute, knitting related T-shirt (Georgia) from Threadless – a website where people can submit their ideas for graphic T’s with the possibility of having them printed if there’s enough interest.

Now he has something up there which I love – a very moody piece filled with romance and history — very noir-ish, very In the Mood for Love-ish (that too cool for school movie by Wong Kar Wai, starring Maggie Cheung and Tony Leung).

Here it is:

Click to see it bigger. My brother’s style is very subtle and it can be easy to miss the details if the picture is too small.

And if you’re so inclined, you can vote for his design at the website.

Boring Post

Posted on | July 20, 2007 | 5 Comments

The lovely charcoal is for a One Planet project. The purple one is some swatching yarn that Lisa kindly sent me to try. And the off white one is yak down for my second project for Yahaira’s book – which is, incidentally, also almost done knitting-wise.

Have I said already that I love love love my new swift and ballwinder?

Go see Sicko

Posted on | July 15, 2007 | 8 Comments

My husband and I just came back from watching the new Michael Moore film – Sicko – which was mysteriously billed as a comedy at our local theatre (if only!). I’m not a political person – I’m ashamed to say that I’ve only voted in one election – but this movie really must be seen by everyone in the U.S.

As usual, Michael Moore overdoes it – he certainly tends to oversimplify the situation until all the shades of grey disappear and you’re left with just black and white – but I think the issues he touches on should be discussed and debated and pondered, both by people in power and by the electorate that puts them there.

A really good Slate article analyzes some of Moore’s missteps in the film while acknowledging that it highlights real and disturbing attributes of our failing system.

In my own mini version of Sicko, I just received a letter from my insurance company – Blue Horizon of New Jersey – denying further visits to my physical therapist for treating my knees. They had only approved 9 visits which amounts to a month of therapy, hardly enough, in my and my therapist’s view, to even begin to address the problem. In their letter, they claim that since my therapist’s progress report indicated that my pain is now on a scale of 4 out of 10, I have achieved the parameters necessary for daily life. Well, I beg to differ. My daily life used to consist of some exercise. Now, I can barely walk for a prolonged period of time. My heart rate has gone from 60 to 85 and my level of physical fitness and general sense of well being has deteriorated quite a bit in the 8 months since I’ve been sedentary. I do plan to appeal the decision by the way.

I used to be incredulous when I heard that insurance companies would reject a relatively inexpensive procedure to arrest a problem in its initial stages, thinking (naively) that when the problem worsened, they would have to shell out that much more money to make up for lost time. After seeing Sicko, I realized that insurance companies aren’t worried about more expensive problems down the line because their strategy is to always deny care.

There’s a very “Moore” bit in the film where his film crew follows a woman who was denied treatment by her insurance company and heads to Canada where she’s “married” to a Canadian friend, giving her access to Canada’s health care. It’s played partly for laughs, but watching it made me glad that I’m married to an Italian. From him, I know that a nationalist health care system isn’t the cure-all (no pun intended) Moore tries to make it out to be. Still, I think I will try to get that Italian citizenship through my marriage to him after all.

A thoughtful gift & a late night film

Posted on | July 14, 2007 | 5 Comments

Fellow bloggers are the nicest people. I made an offhand comment several weeks ago to
There’s a velcro fastening at the top where you can insert a coat hanger to discretely stow your now organized circular needle collection in an out of the way closet. Thanks so much, Edna!

Last night, my husband and I took in a late showing of the new Harry Potter film. The film felt really rushed in places (the book which the film is based on is 800+ pages!) and some details (relatively insignificant) were changed, but in general I liked it. I especially liked the exhilarating nighttime broomstick ride through a lit up London towards the beginning of the film. Seeing magic set against the backdrop of a modern city is very thrilling for some reason – I thought that scene was really well done. Unfortunately, I thought the film deteriorated a bit from then on. But I did enjoy seeing all the lovely sweaters that we’ve come to expect from a Harry Potter film. In particular, I liked the vest Ginny Weasley wore on Christmas morning. And some of Hermione’s sweaters were great too. I found myself thinking of sweater construction for most of the film. Now, that’s obsession isn’t it?

Knit blogger meet ups and marathon knitting

Posted on | July 9, 2007 | 7 Comments

Several Fridays ago, I finally went to one of the weekly Spider meetups at the Point Cafe.
This is the result of a solid weekend of knitting. My hands are quite sore, but one design is almost finished.

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