Tuesday, October 27, 2009

October Projects, and Still Wandering...

These are the booties I knit to go along with the hat for Judy's baby. They're getting a dip in some Eucalan, then off in the mail this week. They may even beat the recipient's arrival! The colour's a little more vibrant than in this picture. This is gonna be one funky baby...

Some other things in the works:

Knitting excessively (is it ever really excessive?), plus baking too many brownies, is what I've been up to instead of homework. It's weird, but I just can't seem to get into it this year. All I want to do is play with fibre. Who knows, if I hadn't reacted so badly to the first teacher in MAAD I met, maybe I would have stayed and been a lot happier? I do love printmaking, and I find crit and curatorial fascinating, but textiles are what I care about the most. I dream about knitting. I read knitting books for fun, just to see how things are put together. I constantly try to figure out how to translate architectural elements into fabric. I'm trying to find a way to fit a loom into our apartment, and to learn to use said loom....

Everything I'm doing now, I can use for whatever I decide to do after school. That's not the problem so much. My problem is getting through what I'm doing now. I have such a hard time not wanting to get to the next thing, start the new thing. I had to stop myself from obsessing over grad schools already. If you don't know the system, most schools require you to be out of school and working for two years before they consider you for a MFA program. That means I'm three to four years away from even applying to anything.

I think I need to chill a bit. Yes?

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Bean-Baby Hat! (With Pattern)

I made this hat for my cousin's baby-to-be, affectionately referred to as the Bean. This is my first time writing up a pattern and it hasn't been test-knitted yet. If you find any errors or anything is unclear, feel free to contact me! I'd appreciate any feedback.

1 ball Rowan RYC Cashsoft Baby DK
US#3, 3.25 mm set of DPNs (or size to get gauge)
Tapestry needle
Pompom maker (optional)

28sts and 36rows = 4"/10cm

Using long-tail method, cast on 88sts.
Place marker and join in the round.
Knit 10 rows k1 p1 rib.
Switch to pattern.
Row 1: k to end
Row 2: k to end
Row 3: * k3 p1 * to end
Row 4: k to end
Row 5: k to end
Row 6: * k1 p1 k2 * to end
Repeat rows 1-6, 4 times
Knit rows 1-3
Decrease row1: *p2tog, k3, p1, k2* to end
Dec row 2: k to end
Dec row 3: *k3, k2tog, k2* to end
Dec row 4: *k2, p1* to end
Dec row 5: *k4, k2tog* to end
Dec row 6: k to end
Dec row 7: *k3, k2tog* to end
Dec row 8: k to end
Dec row 9: *k2, k2tog* to end
Dec row 10: *k1, k2tog* to end
Dec row 11: *k2tog* to end
Dec row 12: *k2tog* to one stitch from end, k1
Break yarn and pull through remaining loops. I like to run it through twice for stability.

Pick up 3sts from the bottom edge of the hat.
Knit an i-cord for about 6.5" or desired length.
Break yarn and pull through stitches on needle.

Pick up 3sts from the opposite side of the hat.
Knit an i-cord for about 6.5" or desired length.
Break yarn and pull through stitches on needle.

Make a giant pompom and sew onto the top of the hat. Mine is made with the size large Clover pompom maker, which I love. But I make a lot of pompoms...

Weave in ends.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

This Week's Big Project

I'm going to do something I've been meaning to do for ages, and actually write down and copy eit my handwarmer pattern. Brian's currently making me a pair from my handspun... On my needles... so maybe we're making me a pair! When he's done I'm going to start on a gold pair for my friend Jade and do a final edit, then post the pattern here.


It's a pretty basic pattern, but I've used it to make some other, more interesting pairs as well.


Like these ones, which were based on a pair me and Emma saw at Urban Outfitters, and didn't have $45 for. The cable turned out entirely different, since I made this one up for the project, but the colour is pretty close. I also like them better, since the ones we saw didn't have a thumb gusset!


These ones are also pretty heavily cabled, and are 2 strands of worsted held together and knit on 6mm needles. Peter promptly felted these in the wash, and is now only ever given superwash or pre-felted items.

And soon he can just make his own...

Thursday, July 30, 2009


This yarn is now nicely knitted into a cap for my dad. First of the Christmas presents done! I still need to spin some complementary yarn for the pom pom he requested, but I still feel pretty on top of the game.

I'm done cat sitting tomorrow and I'm going to start on project #2, Noisette from the Blackstone Tweed Berroco Booklet. I'm swatching with Patons Classic Merino, and I'll have to see if it works, but Emma approves of the colour and pattern, so at least that's out of the way. There's no way I'm surprise knitting a sweater. She's going to be bugged about it every step along.

I finished a few things while at Sam's place. The hat turned out great, and I really like the shrug, but I wish it wasn't riding up a bit in the photo. It fits way better than it looks like it does...



Now I just have to finish the Branching Out Scarf I've been working on for the last three years. Yeash.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Summer Projects: Part 1

My class ended a couple (okay, three) weeks ago, and I'm starting to feel like I can get my own projects going. I have a big list of things I'm trying to do over the summer, with lots of new things thrown in there.


This is the fabric and pattern for a handbag I'm making my mom for Christmas (finishing up 2008's presents this week has convinced me of the wonders of starting early). I do sew, so this isn't totally a new thing, but I mostly tend to hand sew, or sew with felt, or just redo all the seams on my vintage dresses. I'm excited about getting all the pieces together and making something carefully and precisely, not a skill set I generally use.

You may have noticed the tuft of white fluffy wool in an Ashford box in the corner of the picture. The box is for the wonderful handcards that Brian got me for my birthday last year, which is almost a whole year ago now. I put them together and tried them out on Monday. I started with some light blue merino roving from Lettuce Knit and tore it up into a pile of fluffy, and some dyed corriedale locks from Louet which I opened up.


The idea was to make a nice tweedy blend for some fluffy yarn to make my dad a hat that may actually fit his bizarrly large/round head. Hats in the past have just popped right off the top of it. I'm working on that. You can see my first couple of rolags in the first picture, and here's all 18 of them next to my aging cellphone for size comparison.


I spun the first half of the batch on my large handspindle, semi-worsted draw on some fibres that really want to be woolen. I then navajo plied the singles. I'll post some pictures once the second batch is done.

And did you notice? No more cellphone photos!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Lots of Doing

I started a fabric surface design class at OCAD two weeks ago and I love it. Want to see what I've been working on?




These now have silver/purple bubbles on them as well... I'm going to try and get a real shot of those if I can ever figure out how to get pictures off my dad's camera. Until then, cellphone pics for all.

This gentleman seems not to mind at all...


Sunday, April 19, 2009

Real (and Recent) Photos: Coming Soon

It seems my dad is going to donate his old digital camera to my photo improvement endeavours. Soon I will have actually clear photos of projects. Now if I could only find working batteries anywhere in the house...

In the meantime, these are some scans/photos of my final project in photo-based printmaking last term. I'm really happy with how it turned out. The book is a log of every home I've ever lived in. It's backed in different really pretty quilting fabrics I got from The Workroom, but you can't really tell in these pictures.

Home Front Cover Web

This is the front cover with me (in the stroller) and my dad standing in front of the first house I can ever remember living in. It's printed with an inkjet printer on treated cotton that holds the ink permanently after heat-setting. I then embroidered the word Home and set it into the hoop with a foamcore backing.

Home Interior Web
The yellow prints were done with pronto plates and are maps of the different areas I've lived in. The brown images were printed the same way, and are of all the houses I've lived in. Green embroidery connects them to their location on the maps.

Home Back Cover Web
This is the back cover, printed the same as the first, and shows the last place I lived at the time I made the book. I no longer live there for various reasons, but it was very fun while it lasted. Check out Bike Pirates if you ever need to fix your bike, they are awesome bike magician types. They were great neighbours too.
Part of why I enjoyed this project so much was that it let me examine my feelings about various times in my life, and how much those feelings were connected to where I lived. We moved a fair bit while I was growing up, and I'm not done moving yet. Even the places I lived in for a very short time have a powerful ambiance about them, especially in regards to my memories of those times.
Since I've already moved again, I'm thinking of working this into a set of books. That way I can just keep adding to them as my printing style evolves and my habitat changes.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Operation: Stash Bust

I currently have 61 stashed items on my ravelry page (hooksvsneedles), and that doesn't count the multiples of most of those items, as well as all the things I have yet to catalogue. Oh my.
I do believe it's time to destash a bit. I'm compiling a list of one-skein wonders to bust some of the leftovers, and trying to get the large projects I have on the go finished so I can move on to other big projects...

Currently on my plate?

A Noro Striped Scarf, like everyone seems to be making. This one was started around November for Brian's Christmas present. Very obviously not done.

A slightly altered Top-Down Shoulder Warmer by Cosmicpluto. I made the sleeves bigger by increasing on both sides of one increase instead of just one side. Now the sleeves are maybe too big? I'm thinking of ripping back the ribbing and making it tighter, so it has puff sleeves.

purple cowl
At least I'm making some headway with the yarn masses. This is a slightly short Abby from Knitty, made from my handspun. I'm super happy with it. And wearing it right now. Because I love it. I need to remember this when I run out of steam on stuff... Mind you, I still have about 200 grams of this roving left. Oy.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

National Gallery

I just got back from Ottawa after finishing classes. We made a surprise trip to the National Gallery and I finally got to see Louise Bourgeois' Maman. Brian's brother's not so fond of it, but I love her stuff and it was so neat to see how it was constructed. There are lots of solder joins all the way along the legs and body. And there are eggs inside! You can kind of see them in the first photo.

I think I need a real digital camera instead of just using my cellphone all the time...

Friday, February 20, 2009

Printing Day

Should really be every day? I'm going in Monday and Tuesday to finish up the massive backlog of printing stuff. I've been sick more or less constantly since January which has really put a wrench in the art works.

There is also an inexplicable shortage of Canadian art pottery at the thrift stores these days, making my other project much harder. At least I have some ins for this... Maybe Holly has some broken things hanging out at home? I shall have to ask when she gets back from her trip.

Ulg. and now I remember I still have the plates for the octopus thing in my locker. I only ever printed the black, and I think it would be great to get them both done. I didn't bother registering at all though, so that will be fun. Yay, me.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Burroughs is Soooooo Mad


Your head, damn you!

Dear John Campbell,

It is difficult to find pictures of you. Maybe you should stop writing about your hair, yet drawing yourself bald. I want to know already!