Thursday, November 19, 2009

Hello! Long time no hear, from me that is. I would love to say that I have been SO busy, and while I have been, I have not been too busy to blog. I have gotten really lazy when it has come to blogging and the sad thing is there has been blog worthy content.

There has been knitting, there has been stash enhancements, there has been library additions too. What has not happened is all my laundry completed and put away, every dish cleaned and put away and the spare room still needs much attention. There is still no baby on the way and we will be picking up our efforts at the fertility clinic the beginning of next year.

I promise to post some finished knitting, update on progress of current projects and pictures of it all. Also I will be having my annual birthday blog contest, the prize you ask? It will be a fabulous book, trust me, it is a gem (just ask Meg Swansen.) So stay tuned, check back and I will keep you posted.

Until then, enjoy a picture of my furry little guy.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Sock Summit the Out-Takes

Ok, this is THE last Sock Summit post that I am going to do, I swear! I wanted to get this out a while ago, but I am still trying to get things back in order post SS09. This post is about random things that happened at SS09 that were very memorable but did not make it into my other SS09 posts. Here goes...

There are a group of 10 of us that know what the meaning of Whoop! Whoop!

You can trade a Voodoo Doughnut for a pair of Mini Socks. This very lovely lady Lynne, sat down at the table I was sitting and really wanted a doughnut so she offered a pair of mini socks that she made for the doughnut, I told her that she could have one, the trade was not necessary and she insisted. So now I have a cute little pair of mini socks!
Cat Borhdi thinks I look like Robin Williams. Well at least the hair part.

Before SS09 I had not known how much my mother and Tina Newton look alike.
They could be sisters (a girl can only dream.) Sorry, the photo of mom is a bit blurry, but you get the idea.

Nancy Bush and Ann Budd were walking out of the convention center on their way to dinner. Jasmin sees them and runs up to them looks at Ann Budd and says, "I loved your daughter in the production of Romeo and Juliet." Ann Budd replies, "That was Pam Allen."

This was taken before the faux pas.

I was interviewed on the local CBS station KOIN 6 about the Sock Summit. This is the only video available online, but there were other segments that ran at different times with more of the interview.

Mittens can be used to cover other parts of your body (and that is all I am going to say about that to protect the innocent.)
Knitters after having several drinks are good negotiators, they could even talk a person out of their clothes (and that is all I am going to say about that to protect the innocent.)

The next time Cookie gives me advice on what classes to take at a knitting event, I will listen. (Regret not taking a class from Anna Zilboorg.)

Some stash enhancement. I really didn't buy much yarn, I bought more tools and project bags than yarn.
Sock Summit Purchases

Bryson sock blockers with my sock project I was knitting at SS09, Miss Babs sock yarn in My Kelley colorway, Skull and knitting needles project bag in chocolate brown and mint green, Misti Alpaca lace (the entire bag-5 hanks) in a beautiful red at a steal of a price I might add, Thank you WEBS Yarns, Ebony tool named Wanda, Triangular project bag made by Knit, Purl, Sew What?

What do I think if Sock Summit? Been there, done that, got the t-shirt :)

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Portland Sock Summit Day 5

This was a big day. What I did not tell you about the night before is that I sold my Sunday class Textured Colorwork with Chrissy Gardiner for a prawn & scallop dinner to a nice young man Ben. Why would I do that? Cause my class started at 9am and well, I was going to Barbara Walker's hotel room at 10am! The Knitmore Girls scored an interview with BGW and there was not going to be anything that could have stopped me from being there.

So I packed my two BGW books that I brought with me to get signed and off we went. We arrived at the hotel and when I say we, I mean
Jasmin & Gigi (The Knitmore Girls) and Chloe, Maribel and I. Now remember yesterday when I saw her in my class with Meg Swansen and took a picture, I cried? Well she opens the door and saw all five of us and sees me, she says, "Oh my there are a lot of you" I reply quickly with, "I promise I won't cry today," cause I am real witty! We all file in to the room, Barbara gets comfortable while Jasmin sets up the equipment and we were all just waiting for BGW to start speaking and impart all her wisdom upon us and she did.

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Once Jasmin asked her pre-determined questions she asked us if there was anything we wanted to ask her and my mind went blank. The only thing I could think of was "Chloe has a great question!" And it was a great question, you have to listen to the interview when it comes out because she answers a question that is asked on Ravelry every day.

Now that the question and answer portion of the visit was over I had pulled out my books for her to sign and she did graciously.

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Then Jasmin leans in and says, "Isn't there something else that you would like her to sign?" Jasmin put me on the spot and BGW looked at me for the "something else" to sign. So let me go back a few days and explain. Since we took off from San Jose, we have been chatting about this interview, what was going to be asked, speculating where the interview was going to take place, what we would say to her when we met her, so on and so forth. I had a silly idea that I was going to have BGW sign a part of my body, possibly my ankle or foot and have that permanently tattooed on me. This idea started as a joke, but I started to seriously consider it for a few days. I thought what would Sensei say when I came home and my ankle says Barbara Walker? The idea was great fun to imagine how she would react and what she would think and then reason got the better of me (the same reason that stopped me from running up to Meg Swansen and hugging her when I first saw her) and I decided that the tattoo was not a good idea. Besides, how would I feel if she said NO!?!? I would have been shattered. So I quickly explained the idea to Barbara and she just giggled a bit and smiled but still had the pen in her hand. I think she would have done it, I really do.

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Barbara G. Walker is one of the most interesting people that I have ever met. I learned so much from her and I did ask her a question that I am not sure we were still taping, but I asked how nice it was that Meg and her were at SS09 and I asked if they keep in touch much. To my surprise BGW said that was about the 2nd or 3rd time they had been in each others presence.
The five of us gathered up our things and BGW hugged each of us, we said our goodbye's and walked on air for the rest of the day.

The last SS09 event was the Luminary Panel. The Panel was moderated by Stephanie Pearl McPhee (The Yarn Harlot) and Tina Newton of Blue Moon Fiber Arts and the consisted of Lucy Neatby, Cat Borhdi, Deborah Robson, Anna Zilboorg, Priscilla Gibson-Roberts, Meg Swansen, Babara Walker, Judith Mackenzie-McCuin and Nancy Bush...WOW.

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This was the second best thing about SS09 for me. Lots of laughs, lots of wisdom and a bit if regret on my part for not listening to a certain friend who told me to take a class from Anna Zilboorg (I love this woman!) Also, since I am not a spinner I have not had much knowledge of Judith MacKenzie-McCuin, but she is a very lovely woman, very classy. One of the many memorable comments from the panel came from Judith. When asked about how large your stash is and how to deal with the possible guilt that comes with a large stash her reply was, Julia Child says that every chef needs a well stocked pantry when inspiration hits so do not be ashmed of your large stash, you need inventory for when inspiration strikes. The good thing is, I believe it was professionally recorded the event from the looks of the camera man in the back and I am sure that the DVD will be available for purchase eventually.

The Luminary Panel marked the end of Sock Summit 2009 and it coincided with what would have been Elizabeth Zimmermann's 99th birthday. A cake was presented, we all sang Happy Birthday and Meg cut the cake and served.

For the full set of my Sock Summit photos you can find them
The next post will be full of out takes (they will be fun), stuff I bought and stuff I didn't buy.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Portland Sock Summit Day 4 (long day, long post)

Ok, where did we leave off? Oh that is right, it is now Saturday of the Sock Summit and today is the day that I am to meet Meg Swansen. There were two major reasons I came to Sock Summit, first and foremost-Barbara Walker and second-Meg Swansen. I had a feeling that this was going to be my one and only opportunity to see these ladies and nothing was going to get in my away. I was fortunate to get a spot in one of Meg Swansen's class, however I did not get a spot in Barbara Walkers class or lecture.

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So Maribel and I took the Elizabeth Zimmermann's Wearable Art Stockings and when we arrived to the class only the seats in the last two rows were open. I was a bit disappointed that we didn't get there to sit in the front but oh well. Class is about to start and the back door opens, I turn to look to see who is coming in and it is Barbara G. Walker. BGW takes a seat behind me quietly and pulls out her knitting and class starts. I have to say, Amy Detjen (Meg's assistant) IS the funniest woman in knitting.

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Meg is witty, charming and knowledgeable; Amy is hysterical, but BGW is sitting behind me and it took everything I had to not just pick up my stuff and sit next to her and see what she was knitting (it was re purposed pinkish mauve yarn and she was knitting socks) , how was her lunch, what did you eat? Ya know, chat like girlfriends. It would have been rather rude to Meg if I did that, so I refrained, until there was a break....

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I had this whole well thought out statement of gratitude that I was rehearsing in my head for like an hour and a half. I grab my camera, grab Maribel's arm demanding she come with me and I lean over and with a shaky smile and say,

"Would you mind terribly to pose for a photograph with me?"
She replies, "No, I would not mind."

I could not sit down fast enough, I really thought my legs were going to come out from under me. I put on my stupidest smile and Maribel snaps the photo. Then here is where I am going to regret telling you the whole story. I then slide off the chair, remain squatting in front of BGW and proceed to say,

"I have to tell you, you are THE number one reason I came to the Sock Summit." Queue the very shaky voice and tears (I mean real tears.) BGW give me a Ahh and reached over and touched my arm. I then had more brilliant words to say,

"I am going to go now, I am starting to cry."

Well I was pretty much crying already and I am pretty sure that I bolted out of the room to really get emotional.

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I was over the moon! So i had to collect myself and get back to class, break was going to be over and Meg waits on no one. During class, we were witness to Meg Swansen clarifying her understanding of who invented SSK. Meg asked BGW, "did you invent SSK?" and BGW replied, "well, I suppose, I knew of no one else doing that before." And then Amy Detjen cried and the room clapped and cheered.

Barbara Walker and Meg Swanson

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After class we sat with Judy Becker and had an impromptu lesson on how to hand wind your yarn, I love this woman, she is great! Then we were off to dinner with the ladies of Abstract Fibers. Once we realized what time it was, we hurried off to grab the MAX to get to the Ravelry party. Once we got there albeit late, we still had some fun.

My creation

Cristi (turtlegirl71) and Stacey came with us back to our hotel for the After After Party. Well, we had a blast! There was lots of wine then more drinks just started appearing. There are pictures and video, however, I have nothing that is appropriate to share here on this blog. Believe me, knitters DO have fun! I think the video just might find its way to YouTube and become viral!

Stay tuned, there will be more to come tomorrow.

Saturday, August 08, 2009

Portland Sock Summit Day 3

Ok, there is so much to say, but lets face it, you just want to see the pictures! So I will keep the talking to a minimum. First up, a Portland must...

And what does come in this pink box....

From this Portland landmark...

Jasmin with her Voodoo Doughnut

And Amanda from Lorna's Laces and Nathania Apple enjoying their Voodoo Doughnuts.

Who did I meet today? Most all of you toe up sock knitters have this lady to thank, Judy Becker of Judy's Magical Cast-on!

She was so lovely and so smart and just a great person to hang and knit with. And other people I met? How about Nancy Bush, she likes Merlot, just in case you wanted to know...

This was taken after a long day and a couple of glasses of wine. She then was heading out to dinner with Ann Budd.

Then we met up with Sandi Wiseheart, wow, she is fun to hang out with!

She and I had the same thing to eat for dinner, Lamb wants a bite too as you can see. I had dug into mine already and decided that I wanted a picture so this is really Sandi's food. It was the best Mac n' Cheese that I had ever eaten!

Besides the Mac n' Cheese, several drinks and laughs (many many laughs, whoop! whoop!) were exchanged.

My market place finds? I found this guy at Skacel knitting all these socks on one really long circular needle.

I bought yarn from Webs, yes, it is lace weight and I am at a sock knitting event, but this was an UNBELIEVABLE price and could not be turned down, seriously

Besides the lace weight yarn, I found this too.

And lets not forget some beautiful tools, these are ebony and I am in love. Now I just have to drop a stitch so I can use one, I am sure that it will happen naturally soon.

I have much more to show you. I am a day behind, sorry I am just having to much fun to keep it timely. But seriously, stay tunned, I got emotional today (Saturday) and you will find out why. It was the whole reason I came to SS09, can't wait to show you.

Friday, August 07, 2009

Portland Sock Summit Day 2

After such a long day yesterday, I slept in. The hotel that we are staying at is WONDERFUL!! We are at the Courtyard Portland City Center. If you are ever in Portland, you can't go wrong staying here. Today we went to a great cafe on the other side of the Lloyd Center called Costello's Travel Caffe, great food and drinks. After that we ran some errands and then went to the convention center and knitted, waiting for the market preview to open. Lots of new people to meet.

While we were waiting for the market to open, Meg Swansen and Amy Detjen came walking by and I wanted to just run up to Meg and proclaim my admiration of her, but my senses got the better of me, I will just wait until Saturday when I take her class....joking (maybe.)

Not much picture taking today, tomorrow will be better I am sure. But I did manage to take a picture of the hanging art/time piece at the convention center, it was intriguing.

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I did buy some stuff today. I will take pictures tomorrow and put proper links to things and people tomorrow. It is late, I am full of pizza and wine and need to sleep. Tomorrow is going to be another big day!

Thursday, August 06, 2009

Portland Sock Summit Day 1

Ok, got up at the ass crack of dawn (4am to be exact) after going to bed at 1:30am. I must have been really anxious for this trip. So I was very tired. I got to the airport with Maribel (my knitting travel buddy for this trip) we meet Jasmin and Gigi (The Knitmore Girls) there and while we are in the security line I look over and see this man that looks like Steve Young. So I whisper to the girls, "hey I think that is Steve Young." They looked at me like, ok, who is that? No big sports fans, so I told them who he was. We continue on, get to our gate and I see him again, this time I was for sure that it was him and he was on our flight. So I snapped a couple of pics of him, yes, I kinneared Steve Young. The photos are not quality but it was the best I could do for 5:30am.

We did not approach him for a photo or bother him for an autograph, it was pointed out ot me that 5:30am is not the best time to be bothered with something like that. I sadly agreed and boarded the plane. When we landed, we headed to the bathrooms and Steve was in front of us and as we went through a crowd of people, this guy stopped turned and looked at Steve with a perplexed expression. I looked at the man and said, "Yes, it is him" His reply, "Ok, I thought so."

So Portland is really nice, I am loving it so far. We went to breakfast here...

And then walked around a bit and headed to Powell Bookstore (wow that place is big!) and on our travels there we ran across this...

It is full of water! Promotional thing with Mountain Dew.

Ok, I will check back in for Day 2 tomorrow!!

Friday, July 31, 2009

Socks, Socks and Socks...It is all about the socks!

As you may already know, I will be heading to Portland, OR for the the 2009 Sock Summit that runs from August 6-9th. I am super excited. I will be Tweeting from the Summit, not sure how much Facebook updating I will be doing but I will have access to email as well. If you are not following me on Twitter, I am Twistedstitches (original, I know!)

I am only taking two classes at the Sock Summit. One class is Elizabeth Zimmerman's Wearable Art Stockings taught by her daughter Meg Swansen. This class among several others has homework! I am a little behind on my homework, but that should be no surprise to many in my circle who know me well. Our homework instructed us to use two colors and any small 6 stitch repeat. They offered a couple of 6 stitch charts but I was not thrilled with them, so I pulled out several books in search of something that I liked better and would fit. This is what I came up with...

It is a bit argylish (if that is even a word!) I chose the baby blue and chocolate brown, I just love that color combination. I have no idea if I am going to make a complete pair or if I will just do one. If I make the pair, I have to find someone that will fit these knee high socks cause they won't go over my huge calves. I am using a superwash worsted weight wool, so they are not going to be socks that you can wear with shoes, they will be just too thick. Oh and the other class that I will be taking is Textured Colorwork Socks with Chrissy Gardiner.

And just in time for Sock Summit, I will have a new sock project to work on. Delia from Wine and Needles and I are having a mini-KAL. Through email and blog postings we discovered that we both had the same sock yarn, Shibui Sock, in the same colorway. This colorway was so hard to capture, it is really a beautiful blue green and I believe the colorway is called Peacock. So I asked her what she was going to knit with it and one thing lead to another and we are both going to knit the Snicket Socks by Sabine Riefler.

If you would like to join us, please do! The official start is tomorrow, August 1st, but by all means, start when ever you want and use what ever sock yarn you want. Since I have rather large feet, much larger than Delia's, I will probably stay up until midnight and cast on, I am gonna need a head start. That is fair, it would be August 1st! Now I know this is not a race, but I would like to have it started so I have some plane knitting on my way to the Sock Summit. Can't wait to see my friends in Portland and meeting new friends too.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Birthday Gift Realized....Finally

My sweet niece turned 7 back in February, yeah, that was a while ago. I started a cute navy blue cardigan for her but my finishing skills are something I need to seriously work on. The hems looked OK, but they just didn't look quality. My vision was not coming to fruition, so I abandoned that project and started something new for her. Since we were fast approaching summer and she lives in a very hot climate, I decided that A Good Striped Dress was the perfect project.

I did some modifications to the pattern. The first obvious one is that I made this a two color project instead of a 3 color project as the pattern was written. This decision was due to not wanting to purchase more yarn and just use what I had in my stash. The modification was that I did not do as many increases as directed and it ended up not as long either; I was a bit afraid of running out of yarn.
Little brother Josiah had to get into the action of the photo shoot. Let me say, my niece and nephew are NOT camera shy. As you can see, they love each other very much.
See, NOT camera shy. He loves making silly pictures.

And if you don't already know, I am going to be going to Sock Summit!!! Yay for me! I am excited for several reasons.

  1. I will be knitting, duh
  2. I am taking a class from Meg Swansen. (Elizabeth Zimmerman's Wearable Art Stockings)
  3. I am pretty confident that I will be getting a picture of Barbara Walker, even if I have to stalk her or call in the help of some of my knitting buddies (Cookie A, yes I mean you.)
  4. I have never been to Portland, OR and have heard such great things.
  5. Lots of yarn, friends, and well there will be a bit of drinking I am sure.

I will be staying at the Courtyard by Marriott Portland City Center and joining me are my knitting buddies Maribel and The Knitmore Girls (Jasmin and Gigi). Party at the Courtyard!

The Sock Summit is holding a contest called Dye for Glory. Vote for your favorite hand dyed yarns in several different categories if you are a member of Ravelry. For more information, log onto Ravelry and the homepage gives you all the details and to vote, go here.

Are you going to Sock Summit? Am I going to be seeing you there?