Thursday, December 29, 2005

Best Quote I Heard All Day
Good resolutions are simply checks that men draw on a bank where they have no account.--Oscar Wilde

You won't find any lists of New Year's resolutions here. Or special 2006 lists of any kind. Unless you'd enjoy my grocery list.

Making New Year's Resolutions is an occupation akin to explaining the Keynesian School of economic theory to a 3-year-old.

A total waste of time.

I resolve to do stuff year-round. And then I either do it or I don't. If I don't, there is no self-flagellation. If I do, that's good.

Post-Christmas Perambulations
After being in the house for three days, I decided on Tuesday to get the fuck out of Dodge and join Joe for lunch down in Lambertville, a nice old town on the Jersey side of the Delaware River, and to check out a new yarn shop in New Hope, PA.

It's always fun to get together with my gay brother. However, we are a badass shopping duo. The two of us descending upon a new place has to be scary for the owner because we tend to be a bit rowdy and probably a bit loud. No matter. We buy shit.

The new yarn shop, Twist Knitting and Spinning, is on Rte. 202, right outside of the main business district, and is run by the lovely and charming Deborah Brady, who is also a spinner and a weaver, much to my delight. Lots of good stuff here, for spinning and knitting. Naturally, I bought something.

Nice hand-dyed bombyx top by Nancy Finn of Chasing Rainbows Dyeworks. OK, I've still not detangled the last silk spinning project (that gets done in fits and starts) but I couldn't resist buying this. So many colorways to choose from. However, these two--Juniper Berry and Carlyn's Nosegay--were so color-intense, I had to have them.

It was a struggle to keep Joe's little mitts away from them. However, he bought some Manos and some Chasing Rainbows silk too. And we both sat and spun a little on one of Deborah's wheels, a Kromski double-treadle. I'll keep my Schacht. The Kromski's treadles were too small for my big feet.

More Plying
The neverending Starry Night keeps getting spun and plied. I'm finding that using the Woolee Winder on my wheels has absolutely increased my bobbin capacity. So for the hell of it, I took pictures yesterday after I skeined a bobbin of plyed singles. Note that I've gone back to my large wood swift, ignoring the Japanese crap swift entirely.

One of the reasons I love this house is because of that little mini-sink attached to the main kitchen sink. Perfect for soaking skeins.

I rarely set my twist by steaming, primarily because I know that I'll burn myself, klutz that I am. I make the water as hot as I can, add the Eucalan and then gently push the skein into the mix and let it soak until the water temperature is tepid. Then I remove as much excess water as possible without damaging the fiber and hang from the patio door handle.

There's possibly less than a pound left of the Starry Night. I now have seven very large skeins of it, which I guestimate each as being more than 500 yards.

Whine and You'll Get
See. I whined in my December 12th entry about non-knitters never buying you those arcane fiber gifts and look what my sister gave me for Christmas.

A packet of each one of these beaded markers. Nice. I had shied away from beaded markers because most of the ones I have seen were a bit too heavy. Not these. She bought them on eBay but couldn't remember the name of the vendor except that the person was a knitter.

Rasta Time, Mon
I've swatched for Liz's JamaicanMeCrayzee hoodie (we decided that was a good name for it), did the directions and the revised chart, and I'm almost done with the ribbing. I think it would be a good idea to take you through my design process with this one, since it involved going from the original chart (which I almost immediately chucked as being undoable for circular knitting) to a redesigned one. For those of you who have not yet designed your own, perhaps it will be enlightening.

This will be my last entry for 2005. To all of you who read this blog, thanks. You give me so much more than I give to you, and I am in your debt.

Have a rare and handy New Year. I'll leave you with this mysterious picture that somehow ended up on my expensive camera that someone is NOT supposed to use without permission. If she weren't out skateboarding, she'd be hearing about it.

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