Thursday, June 30, 2011

Vogue Sweater Endeavor Take II

I decided to document the progress I'm making on my Vogue Sweater (it would be the polite thing to do afterall).  
I've been working on it pretty much every day, but some days I knit more than others. Here's the progress I've made so far:

This is the back of the sweater.

Close up. Damn straight those lines line up.

Peanut hates being left inside when things are happening.

Maybe I'll update the blog with my progress every week.  We'll see how long this sweater really takes.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

More Manito

Manito Park is lovely in the summer. I was especially exited because all the poppies were out, and I love poppies. 

I love this other stuff, too. 

Hey, here's some advice: wear sunscreen. 

Monday, June 27, 2011

morning, afternoon

OK, OK. I admit it. Afternoon, afternoon would be a more apt title for this post because I didn't actually leave the house until close to 1PM. What do you want from me? Sometimes I sleep in's just how I do. But when I finally did roll out of the apartment, it was to embark on what turned out to be a mini-tour of Spokane. 

The view from Cliff Drive.

First stop: The downtown library, where I returned Treasure Island, which can only be described as "a rollicking good yarn" (by myself). I don't usually patronize the downtown library (even though it's only a mile from my apartment) because it tends to become infiltrated with a pretty bold strain of body odor in the summer months. Sorry, downtown library, I calls them as I smells them. 

"Israel Hands" by N.C. Wyeth.
Wyeth did all the illustrations for Treasure Island
"Long John Silver and Hawkins" by N.C. Wyeth
I truly love those Wyeth boys. 

Second stop: Manito Park on Spokane's South Hill, where I studied a bunch of vintage geologic maps of New Mexico (recently acquired, more about those at another time), tried not to eavesdrop on the senior portrait session that set up shop about 15 ft away from me (but failed: Really good shoulder. You look gorgeous!), and didn't realize I was getting a sunburn. More fool I. 

Third stop: Lindaman's Gourmet Bistro, where I sat in the courtyard and enjoyed a turkey and chorizo enchilada. It was delicious. 

Much to my delight, the salsa was quite tomatoey!

Fourth stop: Sew EZ Too, where I picked up some wool roving for a super-secret project. The project is really only super-secret because I don't know how it'll turn out. If it's a disaster, I will disavow all knowledge. If it's a success, I'll probably slap it up on the blog. 

This graffiti graces the Sew EZ Too building. 

I haven't quite deciphered the words, but I feel like
the message is pretty clear. 

Fifth stop: Celebrations: A Gourmet Cupcakery, where I selected some cupcakes to get me through the week. I've already eaten one. I'm not drop-dead in love. Yet. So far, I think they smell better than they taste--which is not to say they don't taste good. Not to brag, but I've tasted some pretty incredible cupcakes in my time, so it takes a bit to impress me.

Waiting on my steps while I picked up the mail. 

All in all, a nice little afternoon...even though I did have to chop off a piece of my aloe for my sunburn. It's OK--it was a piece that Matilda had bitten when she was trying to get a ribbon. So, it all turns out in the end. 

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Kittens inspired by kittens!

I'm having a very sleepy day. I think that's what I say every Sunday. Matilda is having a sleepy day, too. She's been basking in the sun. Basking and squinting and finding little sparkle balls every once in a while.

But while she's having such a lovely afternoon, a lot of kitties are in limbo. In fact, Matilda was once one of those kitties. She was rescued by Feline Friends and Kathy of Little Book and then came to live with me!

I'm mentioning all this because the The Itty Bitty Kitty Committee is currently participating in the Dog-A-Thon 2011 fundraiser for The Humane Society for Tacoma and Pierce County. Last year, the IBKC raised over $48,000 for cats and kittens. So exciting!

Here's what the IBKC has to say about their involvement in the Dog-A-Thon this year:

Even though it's called "Dog-A-Thon", all of the money raised by the Itty Bitty Kitty Committee Team will go directly to the cats and kittens. It will help fund the  foster and adoption programs, and go towards shelter improvements for the cats. It will fill the shelves of the emergency food bank and reduce the cost of spay and neuter surgeries for pets of lower income families. It will feed and provide medical care for tiny kittens, senior cats, and every cat in between.

We've donated two years in a row...just saying. You can click HERE to make a tax-deductible donation. Good karma for your kitties!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Wild and wonderful

When Catherine and Nicholas visited Spokane a couple weeks back, they came bearing gifts. 
Gifts in the form of plant oddities!

A lovely lithops. You may remember how I coveted Catherine's lithops.

And an air plant! A Tillandsia bulbosa, to be precise.

The bulbosa portion of this plant's name comes from this particular section--why, it's the bulb, of course.

Right now, it's green as can be, but when it blooms, the leaves will turn
cherry red and have lavender flowers. Most excellent!

I've decided it will live beneath this bell jar--between its weekly waterings, I mean.

And I'm particularly fond of its graspy, reachy, I'm-going-to-get-you feel.
Perhaps best illustrated in the following picture.

Uh-oh. This looks like something that would happily creep onto your face while
you're sleeping. Mayhap to steal your dreams? One can never tell when
dealing with plant oddities. They're a fickle bunch.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Wet dolphins!

Another UPDATE 7-13-2011 can be found here!  Does anyone else think of Unsolved Mysteries when they read, "UPDATE"?  I do. An UPDATE on my sweater progress can be found here: Vogue Sweater Endeavor.

I assure you I've been knitting, but I've been neglecting properly documenting my knitting.  I have at least two projects that have been completed but I haven't posted final pictures up on Ravelry. (If you are a knitter and you don't have a Ravelry account, get one.)  I started a new sweater journey that no doubt will not be completed until Christmas.  In my recent Vogue Knitting Magazine, I found a lovely lace sweater to try out.  I picked out some fingering weight yarn from knitpicks and cast on yesterday. You can view my Ravelry post here.

(In other news I just heard a gunshot.  Yeah a gunshot at 2:21 on a Sunday afternoon in Olympia, WA.  Ridiculous.  Anyway, I turn on my handy 5-0 Radio free iPhone App and sure enough gunshot reported on the other side of the sound, up the hill).

When I start a massive new project, I'm reminded of other knitting projects from my past.  I have had some successes and quite a few failures.  The only other sweater I have ever completed was a disaster.  I hated it so much that I gave it to my mom last year for her birthday.  In my defense, she really likes it.  Or she likes it enough to wear it a bunch.  It wasn't hideous or anything, just not my cup of tea.

About a year ago, I completed my very first capelet.  I loved this project, and I loved this yarn.  I would make 20 of these (even if I never really wear it).

My current sweater is knit using a merino/silk blend.  The color reminds me of wet dolphins. Know that. Here is what I have so far.  You can tell by how much yearn there is that I have a loooonnngggg ways to go.

Pre-wound yarn.

Wound yarn.

The start to the bottom of the sweater.

A close up...those some tiny stitches.

Brief Musical Interlude: For the Road

You know how some Sundays just seem to demand a drive through the countryside? Today feels like one of those Sundays. In Spokane, the countryside means the Palouse.

I need a good mix-tape for my travels, and today feels like a day for quiet, contemplative, slightly melancholy driving music. So, here's my mix for the day! Oh, wait. Melancholy music should never be accompanied by an exclamation point. Strike that. Reverse it. Period.

Dwight Yoakam "A Thousand Miles From Nowhere"

Neko Case "Middle Cyclone"

Andrew Bird "The Giant of Illinois"

Orenda Fink "High Ground"

Iggy Pop "The Passenger"

Martha Wainwright "Factory"

 The Head And The Heart "Down in the Valley"

So, I'm going to put on my favorite farmer shirt (the one with the little holes), let my elbow hang out the truck  window, and drive like I've got nowhere particular in mind.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

This little acorn of mine...

I collected an acorn cap from Catherine and Nick's backyard last year. Actually I collected three. Papa, Mama, and Baby Acorn. Pictured below.

I always planned to use them for some type of craft. Maybe the big one would make a little felted pincushion. The middle one might become the top of a ring. But the tiny acorn...what to do with that? Hmmm. I decided its petite and woody loveliness might just be perfect at the end of necklace. Good idea, yeah?

So, I picked up a few necklaces on clearance at Macy's with the express intention of dismantling them for parts. I busted out the needle nose pliers and went to work pulling off the clunky bits.

Um, I don't really have an pictures of that. I haven't really trained myself to document my projects step-by-step yet. But what I did was this: I made a couple holes in the top of my tiny acorn, inserted both ends of the chain, and fastened them together with one of the rings I'd pulled off the necklace. Then I felted the bottom of the acorn and glued it into the acorn cap. Voila! Acorn necklace!

And this particular acorn necklace was destined for Catherine's was a birthday present. Hooray!

Friday, June 10, 2011


 Here's one from the vault. Long hair? Archaic, medallion-festooned clothing?

Sinister headpiece? Villainous eyebrows? Dastardly moustache?

Must be Vlad Tepes, aka Vlad Dracul. You know, the Impaler. Original Dracula (son of the dragon).

Yup, right out of my medieval coloring book. Embroidered in 2004. Holla at gruesome history! 
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