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September 2005
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November 2005

Mermaid Preview/Ribby Postview

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Earlier this week I finally put the zipper in my Ribby Cardi, but I didn't have the proper combo of weather, light and shooter to photograph it until today. Conveniently, we were headed to a Halloween party across the street, so Wee C jumped in, sporting her "wermaid" attire. She'll say "mermaid," too; I'm not sure where the initial designation originated. Yes, I made the sparkly fishtail with about a $3 investment in some stretchy/shiny fabric, and cardboard inserts plus elastic that was on hand. Then the temperature drove us to buy a fancy $17 nude leotard to wear under her bikini top. At least it's plenty big, and she does like to dance.

I've had startitis this week, beginning two scarves ~ one in Deco Ribbon and one in wool that I'm knitting the long way and making up as I go along ~ for charity and looking for the perfect yarn & pattern combo for the Warm Hands mitten-along. I think I've got the yarn ~ one of my MS&W finds, a 175-yard hank that I don't know why I purchased only the one, except that I'd reached that point in the day of total saturation. I'll probably return to reliable Ann Budd, but maybe I can cable the ribbing ~


Gloria's Back

Whole lotta knittin' going on, once we reached the weekend and took to the hills for some R&R. The damp and cold made for good stitching and sleeping weather. And so my primary WIP is now a third of the way to done. Here's Gloria, so far (and I'm sorry that I'm having a problem with my picture software today):

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I'm using a Silk Garden (#206?) that I saw for the first time in Atlanta in June ~ I had to have its  black/brown/gray/blue/purple colorway,   so I grabbed black Cashmerino to complement, since the Jane Ellison Noro book was there in the shop, along with plenty of DB yarn. I'm not sure Gloria was on my to-knit list until that point. I recall Carolyn made it last year ~ any hints? I checked my gauge and thought I was spot-on, but this finished piece appears to be on the big side, so I am thinking of making the smaller size for the fronts. Right now both sleeves are on the Addi ~

And our toes were toasty in the mountains, thanks to our handknits. Last winter I realized that even here in the milder mid-Atlantic, feet can get cold in mere cotton socks. I was extra grateful this weekend for the pastel KPPPM pair Rach made me, and my blue Sockapal2za set. Wee C even wore her "Wiggles" socks, the ones I knit with easter-egg-dyed yarn. (The others are my first pair, affectionately known as "the $175 socks" due to the class + yarn + babysitting sum!)

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In the Spotlight

Stewart We have a daily paper here in the Rich City, one that is owned by a hulking media conglomerate that also happens to be headquartered here. Editorially, the Times-Dispatch leans so far to the right that readers bemoan it as the Times-Disgrace.* But look who's gracing the cover of today's Metro Business section: our newest LYS owner, Stewart of The Yarn Lounge, and her faithful companion, Homer! (I wish you could see the actual cover shot, as this one runs on an inside page, but it doesn't appear on line.)That's where they identify the spread as "small business snapshots," with The Yarn Lounge getting the "Startup Spotlight" and sharing the ink with The Knitting Basket, the oldest LYS that's logged a quarter century in business. Pretty cool, eh?

I learned to knit socks at the KB, and on Saturday the Wee C snuggled SPCA mascot Rosebud while I purled a few rows for pets at the Lounge. These two are my personal go-to LYSes, as they are closest to home, but MaryB frequents Lettuce Knit across the river, and Beth and L-B hit Unraveled pretty regularly. (I still consider Got Yarn too far out to call local.) For a medium-sized city, we are fiber-endowed indeed.

*Personally, I have many friends and professional colleagues on the newspaper's staff, fine writers and good people all.


Scarf a la Rach

Rach Earlier this week (I think; I'm again rather overwhelmed at work, so even the activities that counter the stress are hard to pinpoint on the time continuum~) I finished the yummy scarf from the yarn that Rachael spun for me. I hope you can see the complexities of this alpaca blend, with flecks of blue and purple and white mixed into the gray ~ I shot it outdoors this morning while the sky was as overcast as it's been for days. I didn't really know what the yardage was, just cast on and knitted away, and it ended up a good 46" length at a 4-5" width. Perfectly yummy, and a chill in the air tells me I'll be wearing it before long!


Whole Lotta Folk

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Press_thumb2 We spent the better part of the weekend attending the National Folk Festival, right here in the Rich City. Despite threatening weather, tens of thousands of music and culture fans headed down to the river to listen, dance, watch, learn, eat, drink, dance and splash in the mud. Highlights* included the Japanese Candyman who made animals out of molten sugar, much like a Venetian glassblower;  the "Music from the Crooked Road" stage, with sounds from them thar hills (not that you can see them from here) ranging from unknowns to Ralph Stanley; Guinness, even in a plastic cup; blugrass band Mountain Heart; quilts on display; spinners giving demos; and kettle corn. When she wasn't mugging for the camera (and showing off that corn), Wee C let the music move her. Rach and Lala, y'all need to be here next year ~ there were impromptu jams every which way, instrument makers, and one stage with a big ol' dance floor . . . Everyone should be here!

Oh, and before we headed back to the fest yesterday, I had Brotherman take a model shot of the Violets by the River shawl.

*A real highlight for me alone was having a woman ~ who looked really familiar ~ have we met? ~ say to me in passing Saturday, "I love your blog." I felt like Wendy! Please let me know who you were, and let me invite you to S&B ~


Stitching Seven

Sboct0003 OK, I don't think Pam (photo by the Wee C, one of her few that captured face rather than cleavage) or Kim touched a needle, but this month's S&B Tuesday saw seven attendees. Heather was back after many months' absence, still knitting away on a bag from Folk Bags and toting two great knits I missed shooting ~ I think you can see the Silky Wool shawl with ribbon woven through it there in her Suki, but the scribble-lace Loopy is covered, alas. Both Kim and the post-library Lisa (yea!) arrived after the camera battery died, too. Kim again promotes the third Art Karma fundraising event to benefit ART 180 ~ this time it's anything goes, in the accessories category.

Sboct0002 Sboct0001 Michele worked on a lacy sweater, and we were glad to see her, however briefly. And the same goes for Alice, whose geometric sewing project that came out of her student teaching was way cool but also unphotographed.

As promised, I hemmed the overcloth for the table with the yellow skirt that you can see behind Heather above. After everyone left I placed it there and added a lamp and several framed pix, and then I unwrapped my mouse collection and some other treasures, loading up the dedicated shelf and mantle.  Five weeks in, the house is more like home every day!


A River That's Almost Dry

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Days after the season ended, I finished my Summer of Lace project, Violets By the River. (And, yes, I do know that the group renamed itself Lace for all Seasons.) The pattern isn't too clear there on the blocking board, so I'll post another shot once she's dry. I've told this before, but the project came as a kit from Blackberry Ridge, with the handpainted silk and the Hazel Carter pattern. It's written in slightly differing versions depending on the yarn; the rows across the top would have a honeybee and faggoting lace if I'd knit in wool, and I think the whole thing would block larger in that fiber as well. I had intended this for my mother, but we aren't yet sure the width will cover her comfortably, bless her eight decades ~

S&B's tonight, and I think I'll work on the second piece of my weekend stitching project. Working feline-free in NC, I sewed a cloth (tableskirt?) to cover one of those pressboard tables made for such draping. I unearthed some math skills, what with having to piece the 3.5 yards of 60" fabric into a circle with a 90" diameter. Part Two is the 60" square to layer over the circle: I want to hand hem its edges as it's rather handkerchiefesque.

And, never one to have only a solo project in the WIP list, last night I started a scarf with Rachael's homespun that she brought me at MdS&W. Soft alpaca, very tweedy, that I'm working in mistake rib on US9s. Yum!