Tuesday, December 21, 2004

I'm a Christmas kind of girl

I was watching a show last night on the PAX network called "Faith Under Fire. Somehow, there was a mention of being politically correct when it comes to the Christmas season, and how people greet each other "Happy Holidays" and "Season's Greetings" instead of how it should be, "Merry Christmas". December 25 is when my Savior was born. It's Christmas! I use no other greeting except Merry Christmas! It doesn't diminish other people's religions and how they celebrate their holidays. Christmas is my holiday as a Christian and that's how I prefer to call it.

People are so afraid of offending other people of different faith but I'm sure they will understand. In fact, they have their own holidays and we respect them by greeting them their way.

One note: Before Arnold became Governor of California, Gray Davis used to call the Christmas tree at the Capitol, the "Holiday Tree". Aww, come on. It is a Christmas tree. This year, Gov Arnold brought back the "Christmas Tree".

No knitting content today. Maybe tomorrow.

Thursday, December 16, 2004

I'm done with scarves! Finally! Final count is 36 eyelash scarves just this month. Dani made a valid comment-- knitting by request can suck the fun out of it--lol! The good thing is I got paid for them, enough to buy more yarns or deposit into my kids' college fund.

I've got some pics from my last visit to West Valley Alpacas:

These alpacas were so gentle and shy that even my kids were able to pet them.

Here are some of the yarns they offer and the beautiful diplays up on top.

The blue and gold socks are mine, prominently displayed. Pat Meade, the owner, called me a local Sacramento designer. I was able to answer some questions while I was there, not only on knitting but also on spinning.

Of course, I went home with yarns and some fiber.

Friday, December 10, 2004

To those people who read my blog, you might remember that I have been commissioned to knit those eyelash scarves. I am so SICK AND TIRED of knitting these scarves. I might have knitted about 30 of them so far and after this last batch, I don't want to see any more eyelash yarns or size 19 needles again. Bleckgh....

I admit they are so mindless that you can knit them while watching CSI. I long to go back to knitting my lace socks and scarves. I miss those teeny tiny needles and super skinny yarns. And the challenge of lace!

Speaking of yarns, I got the hemp/wool yarns I ordered from Rachel Greene. This yarn has lots of possibilites, specially for socks. She says they get softer the more you wash them. It's 55% hemp and 45% wool, sport weight.

I have 3 more designs in the making, a lace sock pattern and 2 lace scarves. I'm at the point of even considering knitting a sweater just to get away from these eyelash scarves. argh...

Thursday, December 02, 2004

During our last Thanksgiving party with my in-laws, I brought some of my knitted eyelash scarves and was able to sell some of them. Two of my sisters-in-law brought theirs to work to show them off. As a result, I got several orders for Christmas giving. That's really exciting. Much as I like knitting lace scarves more, these eyelash yarns knit up quick.

One more yarn store is carrying my patterns! West Valley Alpacasin Esparto, CA is having a Holiday Sale this weekend, Dec 4-5. Pat ordered several copies of my pattern just in time for the sale.

Happily knitting scarves, I sign off.

Wednesday, November 17, 2004

The Design Process

Two new designs finished, as scheduled! I love designing and creating new patterns. I find it exciting , rewarding and very involved. I can say that I owe a lot to Mary McCall, who got me seriously started when I began pattern testing for her. And there's Jonelle Raffino of Southwest Trading Co, Darlene Hayes of Hand Jive Knits and Myrna Stahman, author of the lace knitting book, Stahman Shawls and Scarves, who, by the way, has an upcoming book, Variations, still in the publishing stage.

You start by having this idea in your head, a picture of what you want to do. Pencil and paper comes in handy. Pull out your knitting and crocheting reference books, pattern stitches, research some more, then graph it out. Yes, I do graph them out! This is how I picture the design, how it will turn out.

Then, I go search for yarn. This is where it pays to have a huge stash. Whether it be lace or texture, you search for the right colorway, the right thickness, the right needle. Grab the needle and start knitting.
Oh, and take lots of notes.

The tedious process comes next, putting your idea into paper or on your computer. Having speedy fingers help a lot, and having the right software. Type it up, print it out, and knit it again, using your written directions. This is where you find errors and glitches, and make the necessary corrections.

This may not work for others. Each one has his or her own unique process and this is how I do mine. Now. to more fun stuff. Pictures!

A crocheted bag, done in one piece, from the bottom up. I used Reynolds Saucy worsted cotton yarn, 2 skeins, approximately 300 yards.

Snakes and Ladders socks, a simple knit and purl combination, no cables. It works well with self-striping yarns like Regia.

Patterns now available on my my website.

Thursday, November 11, 2004

Knitting Guru
You appear to be a Knitting Guru. You love knitting
and do it all the time. While finishing a piece
is the plan, you still love the process, and
can't imagine a day going by without giving
some time to your yarn. Packing for vacation
involves leaving ample space for the stash and
supplies. It can be hard to tell where the yarn
ends and you begin.

What Kind of Knitter Are You?
brought to you by Quizilla

How true, specially the vacation part--lol!

Wednesday, November 10, 2004

Thank you to my crochet and knitting sisters for your comments and congratulations on my new venture. I was so antsy that I started a new crochet bag pattern and a textured sock pattern geared towards self- patterning yarns. I have too many of that and knitting them with plain stockinette stitch is just too boring. I love texture and lace.

I had to go back to Rumpels to exchange a Lorna's Laces skein. The yarn has cuts! This is the second time this has happened to me. And I was so careful untying the knot. Yes, I untie knots, you know, those knots that hold the skeins together? I don't cut them, for fear of cutting thru the yarn. And I still get cuts. Luckily, Linda can return them to Lorna's.

Crochet Guild meeting tonight.

Tuesday, November 09, 2004

Moi, a Designer?

Today, I went to Rumpelstiltskin (LYS here in Sacramento) to see if Linda (the owner) would be interested in selling some of my patterns in her store. I tried not to have any expectations, came prepared for rejection, but still a little shaky with excitement.

She bought my patterns! How cool is that? I brought my knitted samples with me, as well as half a dozen of each pattern already printed. She's one cool lady. She even asked me if I would be willing to sell the sample scarf I knitted if anyone wants to buy it and gave me a rather good price for it. She said that my asking price was $20 too low, he, he.

After learning that I crochet too, she suggested that I design some purse patterns for the store, using her yarns. Apparently, it's in huge demand. I went home with yarns and my head filled with some of my patterns waiting to be written down.

This is one great, fulfilling feeling. I have been crocheting for so long and knitting socks for so long, that I know I will be able to make this work.

Friday, October 29, 2004

Crochet Fantasy

I have gotten comments from my fellow crocheters that Crochet Fantasy will no longer be published? When did that happen? I read the Dec 2004 issue and there was no mention at all. I just renewed several months ago for another year. I know I said that I won't be renewing (I still stick to that decision) but it's sad to see another crochet magazine go. I guess not a lot of people are into crocheting garments, like what Crochet Fantasy offers.

The other crochet magazine, Crochet!, doesn't do anything to me either. Too many weird new stuff, too bland.

For some reason, I like Crochet World. It has toys in it, some cute doilies, some cute little easy and fast stuff to crochet. It has variety.

I take back what I say about Vogue Knitting (VK). After reading the latest issue, I found some stuff that I might knit one of these days. It has purses and a cute lacy poncho. I'm afraid the knitting and crocheting fashion industry is getting overrun by poncho patterns! argh.....

I'm for old fashioned lace shawls, socks, and purses. Lots of purses, felted or not.

Saturday, October 23, 2004

New sock design

I finished another lace sock pattern, "Ribbons and Lace". I used Gems Merino Pearl fingering yarn in Terra Cotta color, using US size 0 dpns.

The heel is Eye of Partridge pattern which I thought looked really nice, a change from my old boring Sl1, K1 heel pattern.

It is now available for sale on my WEBSITE.

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

Subscription Pile up

I hate to admit it but I am oversubscribed with knitting magazines and I have to cut down. Here are some of the ones I won't be renewing:

1. Vogue Knitting - too vogue for my taste. I don't think I'll be knitting any of its patterns soon.

2. Inknitters - I love this magazine for the techniques but the patterns have been changing and they don't look very attractive anymore. I like the modular patterns it contains though. Well, I have to think about this one.

3. Cast On - aughh. Some of the patterns are very unattractive, although it comes with membership to TKGA.

4. Creative Knitting - way too many fun fur scarf patterns.

5. Knit 'N Style - too many errors and incomplete instructions.

6. Crochet Fantasy - going downhill. The last issue was horrible. Same color scheme using bulky yarns, oversized coats, yada, yada, yada.

These are the ones I'm keeping:

1. Spinoff
2. Interweave Knits
3. Knitters

This should be good enough. I hope I stay focused.

Saturday, October 16, 2004


A brand spanking new and HUGE Joann's Fabrics store re-opened here in Elk Grove, CA after being in a bad location for years. It's now located in a newly built strip mall. Well, I was there last night and went home happy happy happy!

It's way larger than Michael's, and has more yarns than Michael's and Walmart's combined. Prices are very good too! And of course it has a ton of fabrics PLUS many other crafts, just like Michael's. And I think it also carries ALL the knitting and crochet magazines. A little bit low on Knitting books though, not like my favorite LYS, Rumpelstiltskin.

Joann's also carries their own line of yarns called "Sensations". Right now, it has 4 or 5 different types of scarf yarns, the fun fur variety. It has Lion Brand, Coats and Clark, Patons, and Bernat yarns and threads. Yes, I sound like an AD but can't help it. We need more yarn stores in Sacramento!

Monday, October 11, 2004

Emma's Lace Scarf

Coats and Clark came out with a new supersoft yarn, Cara Mia (TLC line). It's a blend of acrylic/angora/rayon. I designed a one-skein lace scarf named after my daughter, Emily . Yes, we call her Emma too! Here's a close-up:

I knitted it with US size 9 needles. It's available for sale in my Ebay store.

More on designing, I just finished the "Peekaboo socks". I'm still finalizing the pattern. I used Opal sock yarn for this one.

My experience with pattern testing for other designers like Mary McCall, Handjive Knits and Southwest Trading has taught me a lot on designing my own patterns. Plus, the availability of knitting softwares like the Sole Solution really helps a lot. And never forget Barbara Walker's Treasuries of Knitting Patterns. Each desginer should invest in her books.

Tuesday, October 05, 2004

I recently bought a CD from Lisa Gentry containing several of her patterns for sale. She's at Caneyladys-Creations. I originally paid $14.95 for the first 8 patterns. But, a great thing about it is that everytime she publishes a new pattern, you get an update, for FREE! Wow! I'm impressed.

Just finished a baby sock out of a new yarn from Coats and Clark. It's called Sassy stripes under the Moda Dea Collection. It's 100% acrylic and very very soft. It creates a self striping pattern similar to the other sock yarns. Here's a pic:

I've been handpainting some Merino Superwash fingering yarns. They're so similar to Koigu in size and yardage. I'm selling them in my Ebay store.

Peppermint Colorway

Jungle colorway

Saturday, September 25, 2004

Ponchos, my dear...

Two ponchos, one for me and another for Emily (3 yo).

Crocheted poncho for my little one. Very simple pattern from the Candy Tots book. I love the flower specially.

This one is for me, knitted, using the Straw.com pattern. I was able to use most of my smaller skeins of handspun yarn. Lots of ends to weave in-lol!

Monday, September 20, 2004

I have decided...

that I will stop feeling guilty everytime I start a new project. I refuse to be stressed out by feeling that I have to finish an old project before I start a new one. It's my project, my time, my yarns and my needles! So there! I can start as many projects as I want as long as I have needles available. And when I start feeling guilty, I will use it to motivate myself to finish that UFO. I know I am my worst enemy. And I plan to take lots of notes in case I forget.

CA Wool and Fiber festival:
Rather small gathering, not a lot of vendors, very little choices. Total driving hours is 7 hours from Sacramento to Boonville on narrow zig-zag 2-lane roads. I wonder why they hold it there? Lambtown is bigger and more accessible. I came home with some handpainted Tussah silk roving and one prize winning Cormo fleece from Merry Meadows Farm in Willits, CA. Beautiful, clean and inexpensive. There was one vendor selling 4 rather expensive drop spindles. That's it!

Well, I won't be going back next year.

Wednesday, September 15, 2004

Susan Bates Socks set. This pack contains 4 different sizes, US size 1, 0, 00 and 000. The needles are color coded and measure 7 inches long. There are 5 needles in each size. I've always wanted to knit those tiny socks that people make into earrings or lapel pins. Now I can play with them.

Tuesday, September 14, 2004

Picture of the Simple Elegance stole from Soysilk thread.

close up of the lace stitch.

Blocking another crocheted lace shawl. I used hundreds of pins to block this one. Makes me wish I had some of those blocking wires.
I am crocheting the Triangular Shawl by Doris Chan, page 91, in the latest IK magazine CROCHET. There is an error on Row 1. The pattern repeat enclosed in brackets [...] that needs to be repeated 15 times is missing one step. After the last "ch 3", you must include "skip next 2 sc" or your work will end up crooked. For an advanced crocheter, it only makes sense to do it but to a beginner who is following the pattern word for word, that one ommision screws up the pattern.

I will try to email Interweave Press. My past attempts in emailing magazines have not been successful. Vogue Knitting has the worst customer service, in my opinion.

Saturday, September 11, 2004

Totally, utterly lost

I can't believe it! I'm lost without the stole. It's kinda like I don't have a purpose anymore ( ha, ha!). Good news is that Jonelle loved it even with the changes I made to the pattern. And without a project to finish, I'm wandering aimlessly between the piles of wool in my craft room. But wait, I almost forgot the last sock I have to knit for Mary. I'll get that finished and out to her soon.

I also finished Teresa's socks and with the leftover yarn, I'm knitting her a lace scarf. Teresa Simons (Mountain Shadow Ranch)is my spinning mentor. She has taught me a lot on spinning, wool preparation, sheep breeds and has been very generous with her time and awesome fibers. I love hanging out with her.

I have been thinking a lot about designing my own patterns. In the works right now is a lace scarf pattern from one skein of Cara Mia yarn. The pattern is already written up. Just need some sprucing up. Second is a pair of lace socks. Third is some lace fingerless mitts. Yes, I am addicted to lace!

Monday, September 06, 2004

I finished the stole!

It's over! It's finished! No more lace stole! What an utter relief! I'm going to miss the blasted thing. I don't remember anymore when I started the Simple Elegance Stole (designed by Debra Chinn) that I knitted for Southwest Trading Co. (Soysilk). I washed and blocked it and it's drying upstairs. Very tedious but ended up being breathtaking. But I can't knit another one for myself. Once I send it back to Jonelle, I really don't see myself knitting another one. It's not the pattern. It's me. I don't see myself knitting the same pattern over and over again. That's why we buy so many patterns. So we can knit a brand new pattern everytime.

The CA State Fair ends today. I had a wonderful time helping Teresa do a demo on Spinning Cotton. People were amazed to see that we still spin on handspindles. Very antiquated, they say. Teresa and Corwyn spun on spinning wheels. I spun with drop spindles. I noticed that more kids crowded around me. They were fascinated with the toy wheel spindle I made. The adults were more interested in the spinning wheels.

The fair was a success. Only 1 hitch. When the fair people cancelled Black History day last Saturday and closed the fair early at 9 pm instead of midnight. There was some protest but I guess they had to do it because they didn't want a repeat of what happened last year. Oh well.

I'm happily off to new project and finishing off old ones (yeah, right).

Tuesday, August 31, 2004

I have been experiencing the blogging "blah" lately. Haven't posted for a while; haven't read any of my fave knitting blogs; haven't taken any pictures; haven't finished any projects. Well, actually, I lied. I haven't finished any of my already started projects from long ago. But I finished 2 baby layettes that I just started last week. Crocheting baby things is a breath of fresh air. Because they get finished fast.

BUT, I have been spinning a lot! Our California State Fair is the happening thing right now. I spun some cotton at the fair with my friend, Teresa Simons of Mountain Shadow Ranch. And I used a drop spindle. I can control the twist a lot more and we all know cotton fibers need a lot of twist!

I have 2 lace scarves that are almost finished. I just have to focus. FOCUS!

Wednesday, August 18, 2004

My latest Creation

I just finished this babyset for my SIL. The pattern is from Crochet for Babies and Toddlers. Of course I had to make changes and add-ons, like the edging. The hat is also my own design, using the main lace pattern on the sweater. There was no matching hat or bootie provided.

Thursday, August 12, 2004

Not much to report. I'm still plodding away on the Simple Elegance Shawl for Soysilk. Almost had a major disaster. I snagged the lace on my working needle and thought I might have to rip the whole thing. Brought me to tears. But I was able to fix it with no problems. And I was being so careful!

Almost finished with a new project I just started, a Summer Shardigan by Terri Ranck. It's different and fast.

I've been spinning a lot, both with spindles and my wheels. I just bought some raw wool from Jean Near here in CA. I've heard so much about the quality of her raw fleece that I have to try it.

I will be teaching our Crochet Guild members next month on how to crochet from charts. This will be interesting and challenging.

Saturday, July 31, 2004

I made a list

I really have to get organized, so I made a list. All of my UFOs (for those not familiar, UnFinished Objects). Disgusting! I must have over 30 here at home. I have 6 unfinished lace shawls, 5 lace scarves, 8 pairs of socks to finish, 5 sweaters or cardis in varying degrees of completion, and yes 4 purses to be finished and felted. I know I'm missing some stuff, in some plastic bags lying in some corner, with needles attached.

But first, I have to get rid of some yarns. Lots of acrylics I know I will no longer use, well, except for my crocheted teddy bears. I finished one 2 days ago. No pics, no camera, no batteries yet. Hats for the homeless this coming winter.

It feels good to make a donation to Ships Support. I was going to knit some more hats and adult booties and sew up some cool ties for the troops but I've been sooo busy lately. So, I auctioned up some of my yarns and donated the proceeds to Ellen for postage. Voila! Boy, it feels good.

Tuesday, July 27, 2004

Black Flower Power

My digital camera's totally dead. I hope it's just the battery. I'm off to Walmart to buy new batteries. I feel completely lost without my camera since I use it all the time for my Ebay pictures.  Before it fizzled out, I had a chance to take some pics.   This is another version of Stitch Diva's Mini Flower poncho.  I added a few rows on the neckline and made the bottom even. The yarn used was Read Heart Casual Cot'n in Zebra colorway. It doesn't really show the flower stitch but I loved working with it. A blend of acrylic, cotton and polyester.  Here's the original version, finished several weeks ago.

See what happens when I get bored

I used to do rag rug crochet and wanted to do something really quick. Plus, it will help me organize some of my yarns.  Hence, the basket.  Made with strips of fabric crocheted with a Q hook (one of those blue plastic ones at Walmart and Michaels).  Super quick and finished in less than 1 hour.

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

Library book sale

Being a member of the Knitswap group in Yahoo,  I saw a post that blew my mind. I believe it was Lynda who posted that she donated her collection of  Interweave Knits, Piecework, Vogue Knitting, FCEK, and Spinoff magazines to the local branch of the Sacramento Library, just a few minutes away from where I live.

Come Saturday morning, I was there at nine o'clock , and zeroed in on the magazines.   I was the only one interested. There were no others.  Almost everyone flocked to the books.  I saw them all and I conquered.  I asked the girls manning the table if I could have several paper bags because I'm buying a lot of magazines.

Most of the issues were out of print. There was a premier issue or two.  They were all my favorite magazines.  Final count:  50 magazines at  10 cents a piece!   A whopping $5.00  .   It was sad because the library did not know the value of those magazines.  And I felt like I was stealing.  But before I went home,  I made a donation. 

Thank you, Lynda, wherever you are.  THANK YOU!

Wednesday, July 14, 2004

Lace pictures

This shows the pretty border.

Simple Elegance Shawl (stole) designed by Debra Chinn, in the latest issue (Aug 2004) of Knit 'N Style magazine. This is the one I'm knitting for Jonelle Raffino of Southwest Trading Co. (Soysilk anybody?) using Infinity, 100% soysilk yarn.

A close-up of the center panel. Susan, I believe Debra. It is sloooooow going. Picture this: Sewing thread size silk yarn, double stranded, knitted with size 3 US circular needles. Arghh.....

But then, I am cheating. The pattern calls for stockinette stitch lace, 147 stitches of purling on teeny weeny needles. Just shoot me!
So, I'm doing garter stitch lace and knitting every stitch that requires purling. I like it better.

Maybe it will only take me 2 hours to do a 12 row repeat.

Monday, July 12, 2004

More FO's this week but no pictures yet. I finished number 2 Flower poncho from Stitch Diva but with changes. I tried it on and it looks good. Believe it or not, it can also be worn as a skirt, on top of another skirt. It's too lacy to be worn alone--lol! Scandalous!

Finishing 2 more socks. I'm making a dent in my stash, an itty bitty teeny weeny dent. Unfortunately , I also dyed more sock yarns, and added more to my stash. Fortunately, I sold several lots of handpainted sock yarns in my Ebay store.

I mailed the pair of pattern tested socks back to Mary McCall with the 2 foams heads that she asked me to obtain for her. Sheesh, we waited for 2 months for those foam heads to arrive! Foam heads, you ask? Head-shaped styrofoams used to display your knitted or crocheted hats. Can also be used to display wigs.

Southwest Trading has also sent me the latest knitting project for me to work on, Simple Elegance shawl (Knit 'n Style pattern) using Infinity yarn. Picture sewing thread size but doubled on size 3 needles. I'm working on it! Slow going but I'm making progress.

The rest of the projects are put on hold. No more new ones until I can see progress on the shawl (yeah, right). And of course, I can still do socks. Socks are quick.

Wednesday, July 07, 2004

Addicted to Socks

Yes, definitely, I am. I love to knit socks: small project, portable, and you get that warm tingly feeling when you finish a pair. I have so many pairs already that I don't know anymore what to do with them. And I can't stop.

My finished Cloverleaf pair as part of the Six Sox Knitalong, sport weight discontinued Country Cobbler yarn from Brown Sheep.

Mermaid socks, pattern from "Cool Socks, Warm Feet" by Lucy Neatby. Lana Grossa Cotton Fantasy yarn #807. Neat book, lots of techniques, some I haven't even tried yet.

Soy silk socks, Bella sock yarn given to me by Jonelle Raffino, pattern is Ladder socks from the Craft Yarn Council website.

Tuesday, July 06, 2004

My new wheel

We go on a long weekend and I get into trouble. Here's my newest baby, a Louet S17 spinning wheel. The ad says perfect for beginners and for production spinners. It may be lacking in looks but it does the job. And for the price, I can't go wrong. This was so easy to assemble! Even for someone like me who hates diagrams and anything technical, I was able to put it together with only 25% help from hubby--lol! Well, sheesh, a washer and a screw look the same to me!

It's so sturdy that even my 7 yo Matthew can't do any damage. Emily, 3 yo, is determined to learn how to spin. I figure, I can teach them on this one. My other wheel, an Ashford Traveller, is for delicate spinning (if there is such a thing). That one is my other baby, the one I learned to spin on 2 years ago (or is it 4?).

I got the S17 from Teresa Simons of Mountain Shadow Ranch. She sells it for $219 plus shipping. Can't beat that!

Monday, June 28, 2004

My Favorite Things

Two more projects I've finished. These are 2 of my favorite things to do: a crocheted purse and lace socks.

This design is from Maggiescrochet.com. I changed the color combination, some stitches, and the way the handles were attached to the body of the purse. I used J&P Coats crochet nylon thread.

Below is a lace sock using Durasport sock yarn from Briggs and Little. I really enjoyed knitting with this yarn. The design is from Socks (3X) book by XRX pub.

Thursday, June 24, 2004


I found my high school classmates (or they found me?) and we've started a group in Yahoo.I have been so busy e-mailing them back and forth that I haven't had a chance to blog or read blogs. But no fail, I zoom in on Yarn girl's and Vera's, Yarn Tomato's, Marlo's, Cat's, Susan's, Chicknits and Keyboard Biologist's blogsites. I find myself reading more crochet blogs nowadays.

I've also dyed more rovings and yarns. I love experimenting with hand dyeing or kettle dyeing. I save those little plastic bottle applicators that hair dyes come in. Those are perfect for applying colors. I just have to remember to put on gloves.

I'm also pattern testing another sock pattern for Mary McCall. She's a genius at making charts! And finishing up some socks I have lying around. No matter what, I go back to socks. I can't make myself go back to the Sheep Shawl project that is almost finished. Just do the borders, Vicki, and you're done!

Was it Susan who was talking about a Poncho-Along? Well, I started one, from the Straw.com site, using my own small skeins of handspun wool. We'll see how it turns out. Just too lazy to take pictures.

Thursday, June 17, 2004

Experiments in Dyeing

Tequila Sunrise roving

Violets in bloom

Tie-dyed Rhapsody

Durasport sock yarn

Amazingly, I had fun handpainting these rovings and yarns. I like knitting with that Durasport sock yarn! It's spun by Briggs and Little, single ply, wool and nylon blend. They're the makers of Tuffy and Heritage yarns. Very affordable.

Tuesday, June 15, 2004

You have to check out these crocheted sandals at the Gotta Make Something blogsite. It is so cute! It's a freebie and requires Adobe Reader. Do check it out.

I have been busy dyeing some yarns and rovings which I'm going to sell in my Ebay store. My fingers have turned black. And I used Latex gloves. Must be the fact that I keep taking them off--lol!

Pictures to follow.

Saturday, June 12, 2004

Tribute to a Great Man

I cried my eyes out last night watching President Ronald Reagan's funeral. It's so heartwarming to see how he was loved and to know that Nancy will miss him terribly.

In 1982, my family and I came here to the US as immigrants. Ronald Reagan was in office then. I was totally amazed at how different it was here, us coming from a country that was under Martial Law, under the dictatorship of one man. Soon after we left our beloved country, the Marcos regime crumbled. President Reagan was the first US president I knew. Five years later, we were naturalized US Citizens. I value that gift, I value the democracy that this country offers, and I value the privileges that most people craved, that this country gifted us. Here's to a great man! Thank you, Mr. Reagan!

Okay (wiping off tears), on a knitting note:
Here's sock #1 of my Cloverleaf socks, part of the Six Sox Knitalong.

And here's another sock I just finished, from Handjiveknits.com

The yarn used is the same Nature's Palette yarn I got from her, color is Owl's Clover. Very pretty color.

I am so NOT good at scanning pictures either. Just as terrible with digital cameras.

Tuesday, June 08, 2004

Flower Mini poncho from Stitch Diva Designs

Aside from the obvious fact that I don't know how to center my digital pictures, here's a pic of my Flower mini poncho. Very enjoyable to crochet inspite of my reservations on doing triple trebles. And very quick to finish. Of course I made some changes to suit my fancy. The yarn used is a peachy blend of acrylic and wool from Bernat. It is a discontinued yarn and I doubled the strands to meet the chunky requirements of the pattern. It drapes well and even with the holeyness of the fabric, it can keep you warm and cosy on chilly summer evenings. I think I will take a better picture later, with my daughter modelling it.

BTW, Vera has started a Crochet-along for this pattern. Of course I joined since I plan on doing another one. I got the pattern on Ebay under username "Stitch_diva".

I can't believe I've finished 2 of my sock knitting UFOs. These socks were started 2 years ago. Inbelievable!

Saturday, June 05, 2004

Oh my! After reading Rachel G's comment on my blog, I got nosy and went to her website. What a Treasure Trove of free Crochet patterns! Why have I not seen it before?? Visit Crochet Pattern Central and go crazy. Big problem- I don't know which one to click on.

Friday, June 04, 2004

Check out the Midnight Knitter website for lots of free crochet and knit patterns. They're way too cute!

Thursday, June 03, 2004

I finally got to watch THE LORD OF THE RINGS #3 on DVD. This is so far the best of the 3. Everytime I watch this trilogy, I always fall in love with Legolas, the elf of Greenleaf. But, this time, the one memorable character who stood out is Eowyn, the blonde niece of the old King. Very courageous yet feminine. A woman after my own heart. She didn't have to fight but she did, just to be with the people she loves. And she killed the one nemesis who cannot be killed by any man. Her words: "I am no man!" She would have made Aragorn a great queen. But it wasn't meant to be. Aragorn's love is Arwen.

Oh yes, I've done some knitting and crocheting and spinning too. But that's for later.

Monday, May 31, 2004

I read somewhere that you can finish this Stitch Diva pattern in 2-3 hours, non-stop. I finished mine within one day with constant interruptions. I had to stop every so often. The triple trebles are really hard on the wrist--4 yo's.

The poncho is close fitting with only one increase and looks really classy when worn.

Saturday, May 29, 2004

This is my latest project, a crocheted flower poncho from the Stitch Diva Studios. This is her actual picture in her Ebay Store where I bought the pattern from, transported via email in pdf format. Immediate gratification. Love that!

Tuesday, May 25, 2004

I love to knit socks but sometimes, knitting them with those itty bitty, teeny weeny needles using super skinny yarns drives me crazy. One crazy afternoon, I grabbed my size 5 bamboo dpns, gathered my leftover stash, and knitted this pair.

One strand of Millenweit variegated (non striping)sock yarn and one strand of ecru Kroy 3 ply, knitted together, cast on 40, short cuff, short row heel and the result: one sock finished in 2 hours (a little less). Got so excited, forgot that I suffer from SSS (single sock syndrome), I cast on for the next one. One pair in one day, including interruptions. wooo hooo!!!

The following day (can you tell I'm obssessed?), I finished this other one:

There's lots of ends to weave on this one and I decided not to hide them, so I created a fringe running down the side of the cuff. Unlike the first one, there are five different sock yarn combinations on this sock. Hey, at this rate, I should use up my stash in no time. More excuse to buy more.

Thursday, May 20, 2004

Lost Points Shawl from Soysilk.com

This was the design I knitted for them using Melody (ladder yarn in multi color) and Bamboo (solid purple). I enjoyed knitting the Bamboo, slick, nice drape and has a sheen to it.

However, I'm not a fan of ladder yarns and won't knit with it again--lol!

The pattern is rather unique. A long rectangular stole with the 3 points at each end. Beautiful for formal wear.

Here's a close up:

Tuesday, May 18, 2004

Oooh, ooooh, almost forgot. I watched Omarosa on The Tonight Show last night and the phrase that keeps popping in my head was "Liar, liar, pants on fire!" Jay Leno kept telling her, "But you lied!"

She kept dancing around the issue. I thought she was pretty slick. She also called herself a Diva and refused the "b**ch" word. Emphasized that she's a businesswoman. If I had to do business with her, I'd be running the other way, as fast as I can. I still marvel at myself for being fascinated enough to stay up late to watch her.

Two Shawls

Charlotte's Web shawl (unblocked), a Koigu pattern.
But I didn't use Koigu! I used some variegated sock yarn that I had in my stash. The dark blackish border is some leftover Opal sock yarn. I used a total of 3.5 skeins. Imagine how much money I saved by NOT using Koigu?

Crocheted shawl, from a McCalls library booklet.
I used wool/alpaca blend yarn I won on Ebay. You can't see it but I added beads on the edges.

Both shawls were finished months ago. Just now had a chance to take pics.

Sunday, May 16, 2004

New England Socks

It took me a while but I finally finished my New England socks. It was truly enjoyable to knit, not easy to memorize, but still fun. I always had to refer to my charts when knitting the lacy diamond design on the top of the leg and foot. It was also relly tricky reducing the number of cast on stitches. I have skinny feet.

Speaking of lace, our Crochet guild had a field trip yesterday to Lacis in Berkeley (1 hour's drive from Sac). Wonderful store with every imaginable knitting books ever published, some OOP. Crochet, bobbin lace, tatting, embroidery, tons of needles, hooks, looms, amazing buttons, ribbons, lace, fabrics, and even a bridal area.

I snagged their last copy of Sharon Miller's Heirloom Knitting, currently OOP I think. I have been coveting this book, a wonderful resource for Shetland lace knitting.

Thursday, May 13, 2004

What I got for Mothers' Day

Went to Dixon Mayfair and visited the Shear Diversity tent and this is what I found. Lovely yarn and pattern from HandJiveKnits.com. Darlene hand dyes her own yarn using natural dyes. This lovely pink/fuschia yarn (so similar to Koigu) will be used for another pattern. The Clouds pattern in the background just caught my eye.

Then, we headed to Rumpelstiltskin in Sacramento and went home with this bunch. 2 skeins of Sockotta sock yarn (can't get enough cotton this time of year), 4 balls of Sugar and Cream yarn for my Fiona bag Knit Along, Addi Turbo circs, 40", size 0 (love the Magic Loop technique), and 2 bottles of acid and cotton dyes.

This should keep me out of trouble (for a few days at least).

Wednesday, May 12, 2004

The mini poncho from the Knit Stitch book. The yarn is my own handspun, a blend of turquoise wool, black wool, and white mohair. Knitted in the round, from the bottom up. Fast and easy.
Crochet night.

Looking forward to our monthly Crochet Guild meeting tonight. Once a month, I have 2 wonderful hours of uninterrupted crocheting and hanging out with the ladies of the guild. We will be doing a workshop on Irish crochet.

My New England socks (from Nancy Bush's Knitting on the Road book) is finally completed, washed and blocked. Okay, so far, I've completed 2 Knit Along projects: The Broadripple and New England socks. I also joined the Six Sox KAL, the Fiona Bag KAL, and the 63 Squares Afghan Crochet Along. Maximum of 4 KALs (I hope). Am I addicted to KALs too?

Everytime I check out Julie's (Yarngirl) crocheted squares, I get motivated to work on mine. Like I tell her all the time, her stitches are so even, close to perfection. Her blog is here.

As a pattern tester, I'm also finishing a knitted shawl for Soysilk.com. Interesting pattern called Lost Points Shawl. But I hate the ladder yarn I'm using. My first time working with this kind of yarn and I hate it with a passion. But the colors are beautiful. I will post pics soon.

Monday, May 10, 2004

New Project!

I've started a new one called Wildflower Cardigan from the Green Mountain Spinnery book. I'm using Noro Shinano (wool/silk blend) from bonnieskozyknits on Ebay. Good price, good deal at $49 for a bag of ten skeins! I've finished both fronts and now, halfway up the back. I love working with Noro yarns, with all the changing colors and soft feel to the wool. I'll probably finish this one fast.

Here's another view:


Spent 3 hours last night watching that show. I don't care much for the winners (they deserve each other) and still believe Rupert should have won. But he still has a chance. Go to cbs.com and vote. Another survivor can win $1 million. Rupert's the only one who has integrity and a big heart. I won't talk about lying, back stabbing Boston Rob because it's hard to stop when I get started--lol!