Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Two New patterns

Rainfall Lace Scarf

I had fun knitting and designing this one. The lavender on the left is one skein of Louet Gems Merino Pearl (can substitute Artyarns Ultra Merino 4 or Lorna's Laces Sock yarn). The Peach on the right is Louisa Harding's Kashmir yarn, a cashmere/wool/polyester blend yarn that I got at Knitique. I lost the ball band but I remember the name. Very soft and drapey with a little sheen.

Jane's House socks

Sturdy enough to wear like slippers at home. When I visited Yolo Wool Mill in Woodland, CA, I was asked to design something using Jane Deamer's wool yarn. She calls them her "commercial" yarns because the wool comes from local growers, some Merino, Cormo, Romney and CVM sheeps. These socks are very quick to knit because the yarn is heavy worsted to Aran weight. I used size 5 dpns.

I have more pictures to share. My digital camera is almost full of pictures that I haven't downloaded to my computer (either I'm busy or very very lazy, he, he). Of course I'm very busy: knitting up samples for yarn stores and finishing up some other design in the making.

My oldest daughter turns 16 on Dec 13th and we will celebrate her birthday on the 10th, our wedding anniversary. She complains that I haven't given her a party since she turned 7 years old. Okay, so I guess we're giving her one.

My dad's clan is also having a grand reunion this month to be held in Las Vegas! Not really my favorite place to go since I don't gamble and I have little kids. But we'll do our best to enjoy ourselves. Plus, we get to see some cousins, Uncles and Aunts whom I haven't seen since the 70's and 80's.Talk about "long-lost".

The Knitting Zone will now be carrying my patterns in downloadable format. I am very excited about this.More exposure.

Well, there you go. Since I haven't blogged for a while, I am taking advantage of this lapse and pouring out everything that's happening this month.

...18 days 'til Christmas...

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Lapghans Part 2

Well, yes, I messed up yesterday. The pictures did not load! Blame it on the slow dial up connection, blogger and picturetrail mess up. So, here they are: 2 lapghans I put together for our local knitting guild. These are donated to a local veterans' home.

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I picture veterans as mostly men. I do hope they enjoy the colors, he, he.

Here's another:
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Men and pink go together, don't you think so?

This last one is for Warm up America. Now, this time, I picked more manly boring colors:
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I enjoyed putting these squares together, mixing and matching the colors, designs, etc, etc. The ladies from the guild were great knitting the squares.

However, I grumbled the whole time I was putting the Warm Up America afghan together. One, because the blocks were not an even 7"x9". And two, the lady who organized the whole thing was no help. She spent the whole time yakking about her life history than sewing. And she had the nerve to tell us to take the blocks home and finish them at home. arghhh...

This was the only finished afghan. I was so mad that I finished it single handed (ha, ha. I showed her!!) Enough venting.

On a side note: The kids and I were watching "Invasion" last night, which I think is a truly fascinating TV show, right after "Lost", another favorite. Anyhoo, we started talking about dolphins and whales. What do you get when you cross the 2 together? Daughter says: " a Dowhale".
I say: "a Wholphin". I like that one better.

Friday, October 28, 2005


Totally unrelated to knitting (although I knitted while I watched his movie)... We rented "Kingdom of Heaven". I didn't expect to like it since it is 2 hours long and because I have a short attention span. But I loved it. My husband couldn't figure out who the main actor was. Orlando Bloom! I fell in love with him (who didn't) as Legolas, totally hot elf, in Lord of the Rings. Hubby says he's unrecognizable as Lord Belian in this movie. The movie was very riveting, rather gory, and had unexpected turns that kept you guessing.

This weekend is the Open House at Yolo Wool Mill in Woodland, CA. 10 am - 4 pm, with a barbeque at 1 pm. I will pick up some of the wool I had spun at the mill. I can't keep up with my growing stash and can't hand spin them up by myself. Looking forward to it.

I was able to put together a whole afghan for Warm Up America, measuring 46" by 63" . I do believe I have a career in doing this. Add to that the 2 more lapghans I put together for the guild. Whew!

Monday, October 17, 2005

We have a project at the Knitting guild to knit squares which will be put together to make lapghans. These will then be donated to a Veteran's home or a nursing home in the Sacramento area. I volunteered, as well as 2 other members, to put them together. I had a grand old time doing it. Here are the results:

and another:

I crocheted the squares together. Some were oversized and some were undersized. There was one lady who knitted several fair isle (see the blue lapghan) squares, changing colors each row. Would you believe she cut each color every row instead of carrying them up? I must have had thousands of ends to weave in. My mom helped. I could have thrown the squares out but I persevered. Well, hey, this lady must have been a new knitter and to her, those squares meant something.

The project is ongoing. On the weekend of the 22nd, October, our Crochet Guild will be putting squares together for the Warm Up America organization. This will be held at Michael's on Truxel road in the Natomas area. Knitters are welcome to help.

Regarding my previous post, Lynette asked: "Are the knitters (Sac Guild) nicer to each other these days?"

I hesitate to answer (but I will): Welllll, yes and no. Two months back, there was an outburst from one of the members. I can't blame her and I can't blame the other members for cringing in their seats (me included) when it happened. I'll tell you all about it when I see you. Don't be afraid to come! You're missing out on all the beautiful projects.

Last month, there was an hour discussion on making motions, seconding the motion, making another motion on top of the other one you just made. I stopped listening at this point. It gave me a huge headache and made me dizzy and confused, he, he.

The officers and some members are so deep into making everything formal and politically correct that I think they've forgotten the primary purpose of the Guild. To knit,to enjoy, to learn and be with other knitters and have fun doing it.

see ya...

Friday, October 14, 2005

Sometimes, reading other people's blogs depresses me that there are days I don't even want to read them anymore. Others inspire me. You see something they have created and you get motivated to create as well.

I do realize that problems come and go, and some people vent through their blogs. I also know that it is my choice to read or not to read. I will choose NOT. I have removed some blogs from my list of daily reads, mostly from other knitters who write problems after problems, day after day after day. Enough!

I spent a wonderful 4 day weekend with a dear friend from high school whom I have not seen for 28 years! It was a long overdue reunion. About 4 years ago, we found each other and have been keeping in touch by email. It was around that time that she lost her 18 year old daughter to a car accident. I know Janet is still grieving but you know what? She chooses not to wallow in grief and depression. There you go, CHOICE. She faces each day with wonderment and brings joy to others around her. She knows that she will see her daughter, Jaymie, again, when it is her time to go and she looks forward to that. I am happy to say that we share the same belief.

I also taught her to knit! She went home to Palm Springs with needles and yarns and has since finished a scarf. WE have created a blog for Jaymie and I have started to design a scarf which we will call "Forever Jaymie". Profit from the sale of this scarf will be donated to the Umbrella ministries (for grieving parents who have lost a child). I can't wait to finish it.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

I have not posted for a while and have no new pictures to show. But I'm still knitting and crocheting and spinning too. It's kinda hard to get back to blogging again.

I am so disappointed in how Artyarns has bundled my patterns. They are my work of art and each one took a lot of hours to work up. For them to be sold as 3-in-1 patterns is very disappointing. But, we live and learn. It won't happen again. If they want to sell any of my patterns in the future, I will do my own pattern fulfillment. I will move on and design some more. Instead of making this experience a setback, I will use it to motivate me and get the designing juices to flow. One thing I can say is that they truly have beautiful yarns.

I am currently knitting an Elsebeth Lavold sweater out of her latest book called the Take Five Collection (Book 6). It's the Margery sweater with exquisite cables, not overpowering, but just plain classy. I promise to take some pictures. I admire Lavold and Kathy Zimmerman for their classy designs.

I might have abandoned the Master Knitting Level 1 program offered by TKGA. I don't know if I want to pursue it. They've increased their pricing for all 3 levels which makes it financially difficult for me. We'll see.

In the meantime, I have been studying Janet Szabo's books and practicing on knitting Aran designs. I have also ordered the Stitch and Motif maker software from Knitpicks (theirs is the cheapest price) and might eventually go into designing sweaters. Again, we'll see how it goes.

Until next time...

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Modular Knitting

I bought the "Modular Knits" book recently from a local Barnes and Noble bookstore and here's one of the scarves I've knitted:

It's called the Sequined Sash. I didn't use any sequins in mine but I added some beads to the tassel by crocheting them in with the chains.

The pattern was easy to follow and I used only one skein of Gems Merino Pearl that I handpainted. There's only 175 yards in this skein.

There are several projects in this book that I want to do. The "Holes Scarf" took several tries and frogging before it finally clicked. I was able to do it in the end.

More pics of some Mitered designs I've done in the past (in review):

Mitered cardigan for my daughter Emily. My own design but not written down. I am re-knitting this one so I can write down the pattern. The sleeves are crocheted. Yarn used was the discontinued Mexican Wave yarn.

Mitered vest that I bought as a kit from some online store. The pattern was poorly written and had to be tweaked. This one used 2 skeins of Opal sock yarn (yes! only 2). Inspite of swatching, the vest came out too big for my frame.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Just Pictures

Crocheted Shawl using laceweight alpaca yarn bought from West Valley alpacas. I used about 500 yards and added beads to the edge. The pattern is from Fiber Trends "Crocheted Cobweb Capelets and Shawls" which I tweaked. I got bored crocheting plain single crochet throughout. So I added several rows of lace and changed some of the stitches to double crochet.

Knitted Moebius scarf from Cat Bordhi's First Treasury of Magical Knitting. Interesting construction! I ran out of the cream yarn so, I added a Moorit colored wool/cashmere blend yarn. I guess it worked out okay.

Danielle's Crocheted purse pattern. I used 2 skeins of Plymouth Fantasy Naturale in a blue/lime green variegated colorway and a small yardage of blue cotton yarn for the trim. This yarn (Fantasy Naturale) has a sheen to it, strong, and cabled. I would say, just perfect for anything crocheted.

And finally, socks. The pattern is my own Snake and Ladders. The yarn is Regia's Nation colorway. The Nation colorway depicts flags of several countries and forms wide stripes. I don't think it sold very well. My little Emily picked this colorway because it reminded her of peppermint sticks.

The sock and bag went on display at Knitique. They provided the yarns for the samples.

Friday, August 19, 2005

I have been lazy and have not blogged for a while.

I have been knitting like crazy, samples of my patterns for Artyarns.

Joel and I took the kids to Six Flags/Marine World and had a ton of fun. Even my hard to please teenager said she couldn't believe she had fun with her family, he, he.

The CA State Fair is on but we haven't gone there yet.

West Nile Virus is at epidemic proportions here and still, they haven't finished spraying because of the windy weather. One good thing is that it has been a lot cooler lately.

I went crazy and dyed some more spinning fiber. It's a lot of work but you're rewarded in the end when you hang up the colorful fibers to dry. My backyard is rainbow colored.

I need to finish knitting these samples.

I have to visit Knitique and finalize the crochet class I'm teaching this fall.

arghhh... I have oral surgery on Tuesday. Now, why in the world did I think of this one. I am really really trying to forget it.

hopefully, some pictures for next time.

Monday, August 08, 2005

Ahh...Peter Jennings (no knitting news today)

I will miss him. I missed him the past few months he hadn't been on the air. He's one classy dude. I watched him all the time. He was the only one I watched because I trusted what he reported. He exuded honesty and trust and humor. He was real and he put people he interviewed at ease.

Rest in Peace, Mr. Jennings. And may God comfort his family during this time. He will be sorely missed.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005


Some samples of my handyed fiber. Babetta
sells them in her store.

and some more:

Those silky things running through the fiber is viscose or Rayon, a plant fiber. The blend is Merino/Rayon. A few on the right are Corriedale Cross rovings.

Monday, August 01, 2005

It's about time...

...we had our own yarn store in Elk Grove.

Knitique is located in the Williamson shopping center on Elk Grove Blvd in Elk Grove, CA.

Just check out the yarns inside:

The store is wonderfully hip, with lime green and fuschia walls, and huge soft and pink couch and chairs just inside the store, beside the huge windows. It just invites you to come in, bring your knitting and sit and chat. They also have a little play area for kids, in the back. But my kids are drawn to the pink sofa.

I say hip but it not only draws the younger crowd but the mature knitter as well. The owner, Danielle, and the other people who work there (I've met Teresa and Nancy) will make you want to stay. Talk about friendliness and helpfulness. Thanks, Danielle, for letting me take pictures.

More next time... a visit to other LYS in the Sacramento area.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Check out the new Crochet pattern, Lattice Lace Scarf.

I used a G hook, 2 skeins of what else but Misti worsted weight alpaca yarn. The pattern calls for only 220 yards of soft worsted weight yarn.

Knitique in Elk Grove, CA was the first store to carry this pattern. West Valley Alpacas will also be selling it at the TKGA Convention in Oakland.

Knitique's owner, Danielle , has mentioned that a lot of her customers crochet but there's not a lot of crochet patterns out there. I might have found my niche. I will also be teaching a crochet class come this Fall. The store is way too close to my house that it's scaring my husband, he, he.

If you're interested in purchasing this pattern, just click over to my website. It's found here .

...more later...

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

More on Aran Obssession

As part of my Master Knitting Level 1 education, I have this urge to knit an Aran sweater. I've been reading up on it, the history of Aran knitting, etc, etc and have been fascinated with Aran sweaters and designs.

I have started, a month ago, the Cafe Cardigan, from the July/Aug 2005 issue of Cast On magazine. A mix of lace and cables. I finished it this month. Here's a picture of the finished back. I will soon post a picture of the completed cardigan, washed and blocked. The pattern is riddled with errors. Do check the TKGA website for all the corrections, if you do decide to knit it. It's a very easy pattern and I do plan on knitting it again. Yarn used: Shine from Knitpicks. 8 skeins.

Another one I started (and have not finished yet) is the Honey Bearan sweater, a freebie at the Knitting Beyond the Hebrides website. It's an Aran sweater for a Teddy bear or an 18" doll. A very enjoyable experience!

Last but not least, also started, is a cabled cardigan from an older issue of Knitters magazine.

Yes, I have, once again, started several projects at the same time, he, he.

I love it!

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

The Wonders of Blocking

Here's a picture of a lace scarf I just finished.


See how it curls into itself. I used a superfine merino yarn that I kettle dyed a while back. I have discovered that nobody likes yellow . I added a few spattering of cherry red which turned into a light orange color. The yarn is very soft.


Blocked and dried. The lace opened up, the yarn overs beautifully defined. The way I block might be different from others but it works for me.

I wash the item by hand in warm water with a little dollop of shampoo, which really works well with wool and wool blend yarns. I squeeze the item gently making sure it is thoroughly soaked with the water/shampoo solution. Never rub or roughly agitate because it will FELT (unless the yarn is superwash).

Rinse the item in warm water (same temp as the shampoo solution) until all the soap is gone, gently squeeze, and place in the washer in the final spin cycle (the one with no cold water spray-just spin) for 10 - 20 seconds. This leaves the item damp, not dripping wet.

Take out and block with pins, lots of them. I usually spread a huge bedsheet, doubled, on the clean carpet and block it there.

More coming on my adventures in the Master Knitting program.

Thursday, June 09, 2005

Obssessed with ARAN

Yup, that's me. I get this new idea in my head ...and I'm like a dog with a bone. I joined TKGA, The Knitting Guild of America (or is there an association in there somewhere?) with the plan of becoming a Master Knitter. I immediately sent for my Master Level 1 binder. I kept reading the requirements for number 2. Well, okay, I can do that. On to #3. Holy cow! I have to design an Aran sweater and a Fair Isle hat (or vice versa)? One has to be Aran, and the other, Fair Isle.

Ooooh, how does one do that? Several emails later to some members of the Knitlist in Yahoogroups, my fears were confirmed. But the other Master Knitters said it can be done... not really that hard. It's like saying having a root canal is not really that painful. arghhh...

Okay, I'll quit whining, he, he. At least, I have to pass level 1 first.

For those interested, here are some websites where you can learn something about Aran Knitting:

Flory Knits. Flory is a Master Knitter and was a judge/reviewer for future Masters. She's got some tutorials and free patterns there, too.

Knitting Beyond the Hebrides. One of the free patterns include a small one for a teddy bear or 18" doll.

Son of ARAN Project, Esther Bozak's website. Lots of wonderful info and free patterns.

Big Sky Knitting, Janet SZabo's website, the publisher of Twists and Turns Newsletter. Patterns for sale.

O-ke do-ke. I'm off to surf some more.

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

THE Knitting Guild

I just realized now, after reading Lynette's comment, that she has a valid point. Being a newcomer myself, I've only been attending the meetings for 5 months. And... 4 out of the 5 meetings were contentious (to borrow lynette's word). Picture a group of about 30 ladies and one gentleman, with sharp sticks, who can't agree to disagree. Pretty scary picture.

Most of the problems stem from scheduling conflict. Work hours, families, extra curricular activities and the desire to sit and knit together. How does one prioritize?

Poor, dear Lynette. Don't worry. It gets better. Let's sit together in our quiet little corner and learn from these people, he, he. Or we can join the fray. These ladies do real beautiful work, though. And the hundreds of years of combined knitting experience. Wow!

I love your Diane top though. I will knit that one of these days. No bellies or cleavage to show , however.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

I didn't have much time to read blogs today. I visited Lynette's blog. I again enjoyed her adventures, knitting or otherwise. Unlike her, I enjoyed last week's Knitting guild meeting. It was actually peaceful. Some of the ladies told their knitting adventures, most were very funny. People were able to do Show and Tell without being rushed. And, a couple of ladies who were screaming at each other during the May meeting, were not present. Blissful peace.

Another blog I visited was Vera's Crafty blog. She reviewed Melissa Leapman's new crochet book Cool Crochet. I don't have the book yet but I do have her Hot Knits book. What's funny is, it seems that both books show a lot of cleavage --lol! What's the deal with that? Is that needed to sell the books? Maybe to emphasize the "HOT" part. Why not call it SEXY knits instead or is that already taken?

Just call me conservative...

Thursday, May 26, 2005

Socks, Beads

Hi, I am Vicki and I'm a lazy blogger....

I must admit, it has been a while since I last blogged. I have been busy knitting and designing. Plus, the year is almost over. Finals for DD and all.

Two of the socks I finished recently.

One is this pair of socks from the book 'Cool Socks, Warm Feet' by Lucy Neatby. This is called the Mermaid socks. Very fun to knit. I used Millenweit sock yarn by Lana Grossa, wool/cotton/nylon blend. I've lost the ball band and can't find the exact color code. (Note: my little Emily wanted her feet included in the picture, he, he).

This second one is Jackie E-S's Anklet Coronet pattern, with beads, using Lorna's Laces sock yarn in Purple Club colorway. Another fun pattern to knit.

I have finished lots of projects but just haven't taken any pictures. I can do more hand dyeing. I just got my delivery of Knitpicks yarns, including Shine (cotton/modal blend). Such a beautiful yarn!

Saturday, May 07, 2005

More yarn stores...yeah

Sacramento used to be a 2 yarn store city but not anymore. A fellow blogger and knitter, Violet, is opening a new yarnstore in Citrus Heights (Sacramento area) called Frogpond Knits. I am so looking forward to it. I might be teaching a class or two in crochet, depending on schedules and the like. We'll see.

The other 3 yarn stores are:

1. Rumpelstiltskin, on 10th and R Streets in Sacramento (downtown area). My favorite store, love the people, love the yarns. Owner Linda gave me my first chance at showcasing my designs. She was the first store to carry them.

2. A Time When...., on San Juan and Greenback. I have not been there for a long time. I wonder what has happened to them? The store has moved several times. I love the yarns too but some are a little overpriced compared to other stores.

3. Babetta's Yarns and Gifts, on Winding Way. Her's is a newly opened store, extremely nice and helpful owner. She carries some yarns that the other stores don't. She's also a homeschooler. Also carries spinning supplies and offers classes.

Monday, May 02, 2005

So inspired

I enjoy reading lots of knitting blogs but there's a few that I read regularly. One of them is Vera's. I find lots of inspirations in her blog, with the projects she has, both knitting and crocheting related.

One time, I saw her doilies. Wow! I've sworn off doilies. I started with doilies. My very first crocheted piece was a doily and I got a special award for it. (That was during my high school years, centuries ago, he, he). Anyway, I thought I have already retired my metal hooks and my size 10 threads. But like I said, Vera inspires me.

Here's my Crinoline Lady. She's a pattern by Cylinda Matthews from Crochet Memories. There's very few thread crochet designers that I trust and Cylinda's one of them. I trust that her patterns are easy to follow with little or no errors. And I get them emailed asap upon payment. Instant gratification!

My little lady is still missing some ribbons and flowers , to be added later, but I love the way she looks. I'm on a hunt for more Crinoline lady patterns.

Here's a second one: Flowers!

I found the center motif in one of my old hardback books, made some changes on the edges, and will crochet me a summer shawl. We'll see how this one turns out. I'm using size 10 cotton crochet threads.

I still remember the rectangular tablecloth and full-sized bedspread I crocheted in high school. Back in the Philippines, we never heard of wool or acrylics. Being a hot and humid tropical country, we used cotton crochet thread we called bedspread cotton. It took me one whole year to finish these 2 pieces, with my mom's help. I don't know what happened to these 2 works of art since that time we immigrated to the US in the 80's. I wish I had been more careful and brought them with me.

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Nandia, beads and knitting

I didn't expect to hear again from Nandia but Soyola (Nandia's owner) emailed me. She offered to refund the postage for my last purchase or give me a discount for the next one. I told her that all I want is the original of the Heartstring's pattern and a positive feedback on Ebay since I paid promptly. She said that she'll mail me the original and will leave positive feedback. It seems that she's trying to fix things, make them right, etc, etc. I also asked her to be fair to other buyers who paid promptly and waited 5-8 weeks for their packages by retracting her negative feedbacks on them. We'll see. No harm in asking.

On to more enjoyable stuff....

Beaded Ascot, pattern from Truly fun and easy to knit. The yarn is my own handdyed Gems Merino Pearl yarn, one skein.

Pattern from Swallowhill Creations in Canada. Very easy lace pattern with beads. I only added the beads to the bottom of the scarf and not around the neck portion.(..arghh, I can't see the beads. Will get better close-ups). Another handdyed Gems Merino Pearl yarn.

More blogging notes:

I'm glad I found some fellow Sacramento area knitters and bloggers. There's Violet's blog with her recently finished Shoalwater shawl. Very lovely! Love the view too. Where in Roseville do you find such perfect setting?!

And there's Lynette's blog and her adventures in the snow. Beautiful work, ladies!

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Beads and Knitting

A new fiber friend from NYC, Michelle, has sent me these goodies:

Beaded stitchmarkers! I love them and can't get enough of them. Pretty soon, I will teach myself how to make them. She also has a fabulous invention called fiber clips. The one she sent me says "I Love Fiber". She also carded some Romney with silk and Romney with Cashmere and sent me some samples. You can see that I already spun some of them. Thank you so much, Michelle!

More in Beads!

What can I say? Bead or beaded knitting is so addictive. I took a bead knitting class offered by our own Sacramento knitter, Kaedean, and learned so much from it.
I immediately bought some kits from The Knittingzoneand Earthfaire. The 2 beaded amulet bags in the center and on the right are Sivia Harding's designs, highly recommended for a beginner and easy to follow. Like Kaedean's class, Sivia teaches you different ways of adding beads. However, Kaedean's class offered more. I think K was able to include ALL of the techniques available.

In the next few days, I will post more pictures of my adventures in bead knitting.

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Nandia Cashmere

If you're thinking of buying from Nandia Cashmere, DON'T. Heed my advice. The yarn price might be tempting but the aggravation is not worth it. I bought from then on their Ebay store before a whole load of negatives were posted. I thought it wouldn't happen to me but it did. I paid promptly on 2/21; she shipped on 3/19. In the meantime, I sent a lot of emails, made a phone call, notified Ebay and Paypal, even emailed the designer, Jackie E-S. I got NO response from Nandia at all. Won't reply to emails. I think the Paypal dispute and emailing Jackie helped.

I received my package but, as part of the kit, the shawl pattern was a black and white photocopy of the original. I notified Jackie E-S immediately and she's now taking steps. Definitely illegal on Nandia's part.

Alison gave me a very good advice. Be careful when I leave my feedback. Nandia retaliates by giving you a negative feedback if you give them a negative one. One of their feedbacks read: "I will withdraw my negative if you withdraw yours!" What the heck?!

I doesn't matter if you paid on time. Nandia will call you impatient if you can't wait 5-8 weeks for your package to arrive. One buyer comment states that they also cheat on the yardage, stating 800 yards but only gives you 600 yards. What the heck?!

I have 100% positive rating. Do I want to jeopardize that by leaving Nandia another measly negative when they have so many already? I know I will get one even though I don't deserve it. But I have to let others know. AHA! That's why I'm doing it on my blog.

Here you go: READ Nandia's feedback rating on Ebay HERE. You be the judge. Buyer beware!

Friday, March 18, 2005

Kids Knitting

My 4 yo daughter,Emily, saw her friend, Gracie, knitting. A few days later, while at Joann's Fabrics, she saw the same 2 color bunny needles (Lion Brand) and commented that those are Gracie's needles! A few more days later, Emily says that she wants the same needles and she wants to learn to knit too, like Gracie (who's about 5 or 6, I think?).

Of course, I had to buy 2 pairs, the other for Matthew, my 8 yo son, who has also shown some interest. He's more of a spinner, who likes to experiment with my wheel. Plus, I don't want a fight on my hands over a pair of needles--lol!

With the short attention span that most kids have, Emily preferred to just hold on and admire these cute bunny needles. Matthew, however, caught on really fast! Being a continental knitter, it took me a while to teach him the English way. By the way, he's also left-handed, he, he.

One night, Emily sat on my lap and said,"Mom, I want to knit!". Well, so, now, she's done a small 3x3 garter stitch square. Matthew is on his way to a garter stitch scarf. Simply amazing!

Next time we see Gracie, I'll bring my camera and take a picture of the 3 of them knitting. And maybe, she'll teach us her little knitting poem as well.

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

Sunday, March 6th was my birthday. The day before, Saturday, turned out warm and sunny. We spent the whole day in Berkeley. Joel and I love the ocean and we love to eat at Emeryville's Market place. It's like a food square from all nations. Vietnamese, Thai, Chinese, Indian, Japanese, Jamaican and American Cuisine. Ahh, I can stay there the whole day.

I planned it all, so we can get a chance to visit some yarn stores while we're there. Kill 2 birds.... you know the saying.

Well, this is going to turn out like a yarn store review but just my own opinion based on my likes and dislikes.

The first one we visited was SKEIN LANE in El Cerrito. Smallish store, rustic looking on the outside, hard to find parking, lots of yarn, with NO PRICE TAGS. This makes a whole lot of difference to me. I don't have time to ask for prices. Apparently, they have lists posted on each shelf but you have to hunt down the name and find the price. Also a little bit disorganized, yarns spilling from shelves and baskets. Patterns were in binders (that's good) but if you see one you like, need to ask for help finding it.

But, to be surrounded by yarn... heavenly. Came out empty handed. Surprising indeed!

Second store, DEEP COLORS, in Kensington. Not really a yarn store even though they had some yarns, but geared towards spinners and felters and fiber lovers, like me.

Small store, easy to miss, but my hubby saw the sign immediately. Rustic looking as well, located in a semi-residential area, very shady, lots of trees. Parking might be hard but we found one immediately.

They had 2 sessions going on, a spindling class and a wet felting class. I felt very welcome. The owners and helpers were very friendly and I ended up with some merino/silk roving in 2 colors and a handpainted cotton roving. I loved this store!

The last one was LACIS. Second time I've been there and bought some tatting needles and a book. Lacis is lacis- museum quality display and a ton of books on every craft and hobby invented by man. The ladies were wonderful and helpful. Parking was hard to come by but my husband was resourceful.

A wonderful birthday it was. I got presents that I really wanted.

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Freebie pattern and Spring Colors!

Big Net Lace Pattern

This is a freebie pattern that I will put up on my website but it's not there yet. However, if you're like me, can't wait, gotta have it now, send me an email and I will send it to you in MS Word format.
Email me

This pattern used one 100 gm skein of Chunky Misti alpaca yarn. I believe it has 110 yards (lost the skein band) and is more than enough to make a long scarf. You can substitute any chunky or bulky weight yarn. It is very easy and based on BW's Treasury of Knitting Patterns.

I have been playing with colors. These are Spring-bright! The wool is a superwash nylon/wool blend, fingering weight. The yarn took the dye really fast. That's what I have noticed with superwash yarns. Regular wool yarns sometimes turn out muted in color but not the superwash ones.

Friday, February 25, 2005

New website

Ebay has increased its Store fees and commission percentage once again, on Feb 15th, 2005. I've made a decision to close my store. It's simply not affordable anymore for a small time seller like me.

I also opened a new website, It's very plain right now, but easy to navigate (I hope!). This is where I will sell my patterns, handpainted yarns and wool rovings and offer more free patterns. I do plan to offer kits in the near future.

Goodbye, Ebay!

Well, maybe not. I still plan on auctioning off some of my stash.

Monday, February 21, 2005

Here are my replies to my 2 day shawl entry:

Kimberly: I do agree with you. I would be crying too, having had to start over. But I didn't have time to cry--lol! I'd be wasting a few precious hours, he, he.

The yarn used was fingering weight Gems Merino yarn that Handjive Knits sells. She dyes them using natural plant dyes. The color used for the bottom of the shawl was a mishap color which worked out pretty well for the end product.

And, thank you also, Vera and Rebecca, for the other comments. This is not something I normally do, finish something big in 2 days' time. I usually take my time and savor the experience . That's a nicer way of saying,I'm a procrastinator. I have the startitis syndrome. I also suffer from Second Sock Syndrome.

I needed a week to recover from Stitches West. I found myself buying spinning fiber like cashmere and a lot less yarn. I have never spun cashmere before and wanted to experience it. Qiviut was another fiber I wanted to try but wayyy to expensive for my budget (what budget??).

It was a wonderful experience , as usual, and wished I could have stayed for another day and wished I had more money to spend, he, he.

Friday, February 11, 2005

Two-day Shawl

This is the picture of the unblocked shawl that I finished in 2 days. My dear friend, Darlene Hayes, of Hand Jive Knits has requested me to knit a lace shawl for her to be worn in the fashion show at Stitches West 2005 in Santa Clara. And, we had 6 days to get it finished. She gave it to me on Thursday afternoon, to be picked up on Wednesday.

I had doubts that I will finish in time but according to Darlene, she can also use it for display in her booth in its unfinished state. Well, so, okay.

Sunday morning, after knitting 75% of the shawl, I realized that there was a huge mistake and there is no way I can rip it back because I did NOT use a lifeline. You see, I'm also testing the pattern. I just about died.

I had to start over, from the beginning. With total acceptance of my impending doom, I started over, Sunday morning.

Well, I finished the shawl on Tuesday morning. I really did. I now know I'm capable of finishing big projects if I put my mind to it. Suffice to say, I impressed my dear friend, got generously paid for my efforts, and sent Darlene happily along to her long drive to Santa Clara.

woo hooo!

I'm heading to Stitches West tomorrow.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

I have been too lazy to make a blog entry... or maybe just too busy finishing some stuff. Stitches West is almost here and I can feel the excitement in my bones. There are some rovings I want to buy from Carolina Homespun but will wait 'til I get there.

I've been delving into bead knitting. Currently knitting a beaded lacy scarf from a Swallow Hill pattern and I like it. Heartstrings Fiberarts has tons of neat beaded patterns and Elann carries most of them. The Knittingzone is another online store that sells Jackie E-S' patterns.

And of course I can't have just one project at a time. I'm crocheting Lily Chin's Top down Mock Faroese shawl for West Valley Alpacas. The Crochet Guild Convention will be held in Oakland, CA in July and Pat will have a booth. I have been "commissioned" to design some crochet patterns for her using alpaca yarns.

And tonight, I have decided to join the local Knitting Guild. It's about time, I think. I've been wishy-washy long enough and I can't use the excuse of the long drive, can't leave the kids with hubby or missing my favorite Thursday shows. Egad! I will miss some of my shows!!

Well, so, okay, I can tape them.

Friday, January 21, 2005


I am really addicted to lace: socks, shawls, scarves, mitts (where else can you incorporate lace??). If I can knit a lace sweater, I would. Will I finish it? Probably not.

This new sock pattern in very stretchy. The string of diamonds is flanked on each side by purled ribs. The red one, which my hubby says is very sexy (arghh), was knitted with Gems Merino Pearl by Louet (fingering). This yarn feels like Koigu and comes in solid colors. By the way, the one pair of Koigu socks I have is still going strong, no holes. Everytime I throw it in the washer and dryer, it shrinks a little but stretches back to normal size.

The cream colored sock is Kroy yarn, which I love also. The yarn is very versatile and oh so affordable. Wash and wear, baby!

I am so looking forward to Stitches West (Feb 11-13) which will be held in Santa Clara, CA, this year. A blasted 4 hour drive for me. ROAD TRIP!

Hubby is driving and we're bringing the kids. He'll drop me off at the Convention and he'll take the kids to the MEGA mall, only a few miles away. I promise to call them when I'm done shopping, he, he.

Friday, January 14, 2005

Climbing Vines

My latest pattern for 2005. I used 2 skeins of Misti Int'l Baby Alpaca yarn, worsted weight. Heavenly soft yarn and wonderful to work with. Each skeins has 109 yards, 50 gms, and very affordable at $5.95 per skein. I find myself working more and more with Alpaca.

I'm finishing up the pattern and will get it typed up in the next few days. I'm knitting up samples for Pat at West Valley Alpacas. She's bringing my patterns to Stitches West in Santa Clara, CA in February. I am very excited because this means exposure!

Some upcoming patterns:
1. Diamante Lace Socks
2. Lace Fingerless mitts (no name yet).
3. A sock pattern for Tongue River Farm

I have been emailing Susan Mongold at Tongue River Farm and she's very excited about the designs I've planned for her Icelandic sock yarns. These are wonderful yarns that are strong yet soft. Here's her website. Go for a visit.

Monday, January 10, 2005

Last December 10th, 2004 was our 10th Wedding Anniversary and I wanted to get something to commemorate the occasion. Joel gave me a Golding Ring Spindle, exquisite in design. This spindle is named the Tsunami, where the intricate design resembles ocean waves. It is memorable in more ways than one.

This is a 10" Beka Rigid Heddle loom, also called a "toy" loom, that I got for Christmas for myself. I've always wanted to learn to weave with a rigid heddle and this one is affordable enough to learn from. I enjoyed weaving immensely; it uses up an unbelievably small amount of yarn, like, for a scarf, and very gratifying since you finish the project really quickly. What I don't like is warping the loom.

Here is the scarf I wove two nights later.

Sunday, January 02, 2005

I was admiring Mary's loot from her last trip to NY and all I can say is, "You did good, girl, you did good!". You can see her yarn adventures here. So, Mary, did you like New York? (he, he).

I myself am not a city person. I live in the suburbs and would love to live in the country, a farm, or a ranch, where I can raise my kids and some sheep.

I worked in San Francisco, at the Transamerica Pyramid, for 4 years and hated it. The morning rush, the evening rush, fighting for a seat in the train, cars everywhere, men on bikes, people walking 8 blocks, one way, to get to work (that was me!), walking with high heels for 8 blocks (until I learned that I can wear tennis shoes with my suit--yeck-- ugly picture).

Anyhoo, I'm glad that was over.

I'm teaching myself to weave with a rigid heddle loom and I can see another addiction coming. Pictures to follow.