Monday, December 12, 2005

Best Quote I Heard All Day
The main reason Santa is so jolly is because he knows where all the bad girls live.--George Carlin

Santa will find me, I hope.

My Christmas List
I can always count on my mother to give me something that I really want. This year, she's giving me A Handweaver's Pattern Book by Marguerite Porter Davison. This is a book that for weavers is comparable to the Barbara Walker Treasuries for knitters.

OK, so I told her what I wanted and she bought it for me at Stitches. We both know that our favorite gifts are fiber-related and we know what the other is talking about.

That is most certainly not true of the rest of the family and I've had odd conversations with people when I've tried to explain that what I really would like is some more silk roving to spin. Try explaining a niddy-noddy to John, for example. I could use a new one. My description ended up like this: "It's that wooden thing that I wind yarn onto after it's all spun. You know, the thing whose top keeps falling off?"

If I get this, it will be a miracle. He now knows what it is but it will be easier for him to get me something else, I suspect.

I suggested to Corinne that she get me a gift certificate to WEBS. "Oh, but I've already got an idea for you, if I end up doing it."

Hmmm. I'm sure I'll like whatever it is, if she ends up doing it.

Here's my real Christmas list and what I will probably actually get:
  • New niddy noddy (earrings)
  • Silk roving (perfume)
  • Skein reeler (new book on the Beatles)
  • Some of those beaded markers (more earrings)
  • Carrying case for the Joy wheel (gift certificates to Borders)

Don't get me wrong, I have never gotten a present from any family member that I didn't love or use--they're very good at picking out stuff for me. And I don't really expect them to understand my hobby or buy anything for it.

But I've given up trying to explain what a niddy-noddy is, you know?

Marley's Ghost
So oddly enough, when Liz returned from her Bermuda cruise last August, suddenly she was hooked on Rasta clothing, Bob Marley and Frank Sinatra. And red, green, yellow and black became the preferred colors to wear.

How Sinatra figures into all of this, I have no idea.

I've been knitting Liz socks almost continually but no sweaters since she was around nine because she wouldn't wear them. Not cool. Now, for the first time, she wants a hoodie. And not a Wallaby, either. A real hoodie of Grammy design, with Rasta colors. So I ordered black, red, green and yellow Wool of the Andes from KnitPicks and I've thrown together two charts for her approval because Grammy don't do just stripes.

I've done the hoodie directions already. It will be knit in the round. This is the motif that will go above the ribbing on the sleeves and the body.

For a larger motif, I did a stylized Star of David.

I won't get started on the knitting until after Christmas and I most definitely want to swatch both of these motifs. The Star of David may come out looking not quite right and I may have to adjust it when I see the knitted version. Just my gut feeling. I'll have to add two more stitches to this motif to make it an even 20 stitches wide, so that it works with the 10-stitch repeat of the first motif.

I'm calling it the I-and-I Hoodie. She uses JamaicanMeCrayzee as one of her screen names but I thought it should have a more Rasta flavor. What do you think?

Naturally, Liz hadn't a clue as to the Rastafarian religion, so I sent her off to Wikipedia so she knows what the fuck she's talking about. Fortunately she's hugely anti-drugs, thanks to DARE and the sad downfall of one of her classmates. So I don't worry too much about the weed aspect. Or the dreadlock aspect either. For Liz, it's a fashion statement more than anything else. An opportunity to be different and unique, as she puts it.

I still have more socks to make, and I finally found the other ball of Diamusee in one of my knitting bags so I will finish that sock as well.

If this hoodie comes out the way I visualize it, I'll put the pattern up for sale on The Knitting Vault.

Knittyspin and More
I took a quick look at the patterns in the new Knitty but didn't investigate the articles until Loop advised me that there were two about spinning silk by Amy Singer and one on hand plying by Lorraine Smith. All three were very good, except that they pertain to spindle spinning, which I don't do. They are well written and informative, though.

However, the best of all was the link included in one of Amy Singer's articles to HJS Studio, owned by Michigan fiberist Holly Shaltz. Her tutorials are outstanding. Spinning, weaving, fiber prep, the old WWII Red Cross patterns and a bunch of freebie knitting patterns. Well worth checking out.

Holly includes a tutorial by Carol Weymar on spinning from a silk cap that is much more indepth than the Knittyspin article. After reading it, I think I'll be happy to stick to spinning silk from roving, though.

And I'm still untangling that silk. However, the Christmas tree is up and straightened. All it needs now are some rare and handy ornaments.

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