Thursday, January 27, 2011

Picture is Unrelated

So I've been having fun playing with the video capabilities on my phone (especially now that I've downloaded this blasted 8mm app) and it got me thinking about ways to incorporate more video into the blog. So I'm looking for some feedback:

1. Do you even LIKE videos on blogs, or do you just skip 'em?
2. Are there more techniques you'd like to see demonstrated?
3. Would you be interested in a video Q&A type thing? It could be totally goofy- people could send me questions (about knitting, or not) and I'll answer them to the best of my capabilities. Or perhaps have an occasional guest star do it. Really I'm just looking for an excuse to fool around with video again.

Maybe I'll even break out the real video camera instead of my dang phone. I know it's around here somewhere.

If you guys DID want to give me questions to answer, you could send them to, or just post 'em here. They can be anonymous. And about anything.

Or... something. Otherwise, you're probably going to get videos of dogs in clothes. Just sayin'.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Brioche How- To Video

In the Heartbreaker pattern I recommended looking up how-to videos for brioche in the round... but it turns out that I couldn't find any that really demonstrated what I wanted, so I tried to make one. With bad lighting, lousy equiptment (my iphone) and iMovie, which I only kind of understand. So, uh, here's my attempt.

Please excuse my wonky finger. SOMEbody mistook my finger for part of her nylabone (it was my fault for holding it, but it's making it tough to knit.)

I know I'm moving a little fast... sorry. It's hard to slow down and think about it, I start messing up :-P But hopefully this is a little helpful anyway- brioche makes a lot more sense once you see it done, at least in my experience.

Monday, January 17, 2011

What I've been up to

A little of this, little of that.


"I hate you so, so much."

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Wind yourself up a big hank o' Me!

I've always harbored this weird little... vanity, I guess you'd call it, wherein I secretly wish for things to be named after me. Perhaps a song (I looked SO HARD in high school for songs about girls named Alex. There aren't many) or a newly discovered disease, or....dare I to dream?.... a colorway of yarn.

(Image by Black Trillium Fibre Studio)

Today, my wish comes true! A few months ago, Melanie of Black Trillium Fibres approached Twisted about doing a series of colorways based on the Twisted crew, and had each of us fill out a questionnaire about our personalities, likes/dislikes, favorite colors, etc. Star and I were lucky enough to be the first colors released! (I'm especially lucky, since I'm not even there anymore :-( )

You can read more about it on the Black Trillium Site and see Star's gorgeous color too! I've already ordered one of each. Heh.

(You can also check out Mel's shop here: Black Trillium Etsy Shop
She's got tons of fantastic stuff, even if you don't want to collect-'em-all, with regards to the Twisted gals. Pictures don't do the colors justice- they're always so deep and rich and mmmmm!)

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Heartbreaker Beret

It's a little early for thinking about Valentine's Day, but I'll offer up this little ditty now anyway (plenty of time to knit it for the occasion, I suppose :-) )



Heartbreaker is an easy brioche beret, which uses coordinating ribbed decreases to avoid the messiness of decreasing in brioche and shows off the completely gorgeous, rich luminescence of Madelinetosh Tosh Merino (or whatever yarn you choose to use- pick something luscious though, ok?) Plus, it's warm and squooshy!! You can find it on Ravelry here, or buy now!


It will be in the etsy shop shortly, but I forgot to resize the pictures before coming into town to use the internet, sooo... not yet, heh.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

I'm in art! Kinda!



Sarah's beau Doug painted a portrait of her wearing her Kilter hat (awwwww.)

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Bad pictures of nice hats

I am afraid to say that I once again fell into that common (for me, anyway) trap of thinking, “Oh hey, I’ll get fabulous pictures of my knitted gifts on the recipients! Won’t that be neat!” instead of just taking some ahead of time. To my credit, at least I took SOME this year… but I always forget how badly this sort of thing turns out.

Best case scenario, I get this:



That’s the middle of the hemlock ring blanket/doily, for those curious.

But more often, the dang thing isn’t even in focus.



At least this tea cozy held still.


I didn’t get a picture of my dad’s hat because, frankly, it was ugly. I repaired his other hat, though, as you saw before.

Travis’s hat was somewhat of a success, though, even if these photos weren’t.





I’ll be reworking it slightly and publishing it in the next few months here, so I hope you’re super pumped for dinos. If I get really ambitious, I make a few alternate panels so you can choose your favorite four dinosaurs. Don’t hold me to that, though.

Then again, I DID take a photo in advance for this one, and it's still bad:


I have other things in store, in various levels of secrecy. I have to talk to Vivian about how secret to keep the things we’re working on- it’s kind of a delicate dance when something won’t be published for a while, y’know? And I am currently putting together a little article/tutorial/pattern thing that I may submit to knitty (otherwise, it’ll be here.) Golly gee!

In other news, here is a brief photo documentary prepared by my betrothed, as he bravely removed his godawful facial featherings in the name of love (friggin’ FINALLY.)



Before you get all “aww you made him shave his awesome moustache!” I want you to sit silently for five minutes and think, really think hard, about putting your mouth on that. Daily. For 8 months.

And if you’re still pissed, look at this cute pictures of animals.


(My parents cat, Sadie. Technically I have to dislike her since she makes my lungs stop functioning and prevents me from having extended visits with my family, but darn she’s cute in that basket. She loves it, too- settles in there by herself. Awww.)


What a cute portrait of Pog! But where’s Rupert?


Oh, Ripper.

Saturday, January 1, 2011


Warning: Boring, poorly-formatted self-indulgent post with no good pictures.

I don’t usually do the whole new-years-resolution stuff, because I never keep them and I usually forget them immediately. But a few years ago I decided to try the “101 in 1001” project, where you get 1001 days to finish your 101 goals. So I figure now is a good time to reorganize what’s left of those and see what’s what so I can work on them before the deadline (September 2011! Ack!) At some point I moved them over to (from the separate blog they were originally on) but that’s clearly not working out that well, since I spent the morning typing in “” and “” and grumbling a lot about where the hell they were hiding it. (ie- I haven’t been to the site since I set it up. Ha.)

So here’s what’s left of the original list.

1. Re-learn French, or at least buy some tapes.
2. Re-learn piano a little (I think my parents are going to let me take their old keyboard, so that’s good.

Career/Work related
1. I’m hereby dropping ‘put together a line of recycled products’ cause that’s not going to happen, I’ve changed direction since then. But I’m replacing it with “Get your damn Michigan business paperwork turned in” now that all my Oregon licensing and stuff is expiring.
2. Going to drop “Join Trillium Artisans” since I’m no longer in Portland. Replacing it with “Finish all the half-done projects and patterns surrounding me before starting anything else.” This one actually kind of IS a new year’s resolution.
3. Join Trunkt. I don’t know if it makes sense for me to do this, but I’ll leave it on just in case.
4. Talk to shops about consignment. I’ve actually got some stuff in a shop in Chelsea, so I guess I get to check this one off. Yay! Though I also want to start making more spinning batts, and I should talk to some shops about those.
5. Try the Saturday Market…. That’s also a Portland one, so, no dice. Oops. I’ll replace it with… do some craft fair somewhere here.
6. Be self-employed full time. I sort of am, now, in that I don’t have another job, but I think it has to be sustainable to count.


1. Buy a moleskine and fill it. I think I meant this in an art-journal kind of way, but instead I filled one with knitting designs, so y’knowwhat? I’mma count it.
2. Knit up my stash. (Hahahahah. Yeah. Right. Well, maybe now that I don’t work at a yarn store, I’ve got a shot. But I doubt it.)
3. Finish “Wreck that Journal”. I think I gave the journal away. So pah, it’s done.
4. Make my dog a coat. This makes me really sad since it was intended for Rocky, but I guess he would’ve hated a coat anyway. The new ones are young enough that I don’t feel bad about humiliating them, though.
5. Begin working seriously on a book. I don’t know, do ebooks count? I’m going to say that the collection I’m starting on with Vivian counts, but I won’t check it off til it’s done-ish.
6. Model for a good photographer. Eh, I’ve decided I don’t really care about this. I’ll just count our wedding photographer.
7. Start making photomanipulations again. Eh, don’t care about this either. I’ll change it to “learn more photoshop tricks” and leave it at that.
8. Improve self-portraiture skills. Probably a good thing to do, given how many hats I model.
9.Take photos in Death Valley. Sadly this probably won’t happen by September
10. 365 day challenge. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve tried this and I just flat out suck at it. And now I don’t even have 365 days left. I’ll just try to take more photos in general. Heh.
11. Start working on coffee table book projects. Honestly, I don’t even remember what these were anymore, but it sounds like it could be fun?
12. Make a quilt. Yes.
13. Paint something. I’m sure I must’ve done this at some point…but now I’ve given away all my paints. Hrm.
14. Sew myself some skirts.
15. Try natural dyeing. Hmm….I probably won’t do this either, it’s messy and I don’t really dye anymore.
16. Learn Crewel. I guess I’ve done a little of this….hmm.
17. Print fabric. What?
18. Learn naalbinding
19. Make some stuff for charity (I’ve donated a lot of yarn but I guess that doesn’t really count.)
20. Do the Ravelry Photo Assignments

Health and Whatnot

1. Build up my alcohol tolerance again
2. Find a way to actually do yoga regularly
3. Do my damned PT exercises (I think I want to try and attend this program in Wisconsin that gives you better exercises based on the specific curvature of your spine…but then, I totally need to DO those.)
4. Try a hot rock massage (gave the kit away, dammit.)

General enrichment
3. Mentoring? (probably not now… I’m 1-2 hours away from any real urban area.)
4. Kiva loan
5. Send something to Postsecret
7. Volunteer with animal rescue (ack, I was totally going to foster, then we accidentally got two dogs. It’s still a possibility, but not til they’re older. I’ll have to see if there’re any rescue orgs nearby with other things I could do. Too bad the humane society is like 50 minutes away.)

1. Find or create a knitting group (unlikely out here, darn. Maybe when I’m closer to Ann Arbor.)
2. Interact with far-away friends at least once a month if not more often
3. Write at least 10 cards/letters per year, Christmas ok. (Fail fail fail fail.)
4. Plan a bitching wedding (workin on it)

1. Learn to spin poi (I have them, but fat chance)
2. Learn to hoop dance
3. Try blond
4. Explore Forest Park (in… Portland. Fail.)
5. Get a credit card (grumble)
6. Swap the Mini for a car that doesn’t break so freaking often
7. Switch banks (ASAP, since Chase is about to start screwing everyone big time.)
8. Clean out/organize computer files
9. Organize mp3s (eh)
10. Get a manicure every 6 months (fail…but I’m very due for one.)
11. Go through stuff at my parents house, toss the crappy and move the good in with me.
12. Visit the Oregon desert (fail)
13. Design and get another tattoo
14. Eat somewhere that requires dressing up (I’m positive we’ve done this… I’m striking it.)
15. Organize recycled fashion show (not going to happen.)
16. Get tire chains and go to the mountains (nope….but I went on a trip to Timberline in the summer, so I’m counting it!)
17. Take the dog for a decent walk once a week (Poor Rocky. He was a lazy old man though.)
18. Actually try sushi (I tried a sweet potato roll, does that count? I hate fish.)
19. Increase my tolerance for spicy foods (I think I’m making progress, here.)
20. Learn to finger-whistle
21. Spend some time in Alaska (probably also won’t happen by September.)

The problem with a list like this is that your priorities whims change a lot in 1001 days. Still, sort of interesting. I best get moving, though.

Ummm... and here's a picture of some yarn!


Finally got my stash unpacked. Yay! The scary part is that everything on top is a WIP.




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