Sunday, January 29, 2006

First Finished Project of 2006

I finally did finish that Lacy Baby Blanket. Here it is all spread out:

Here it is folded up. This is the back side:

This was a great project even if it DID seem to take me forever. I started it back in October of 2005. It goes to Steve's Niece for her new baby who is now a couple of months old. oops.
The blanket is just a Horseshoe Lace pattern with a garter stitch and crochet border. I used almost three skeins of Plymouth Encore Colorspun Worsted and US Size 8 needles. Final measurements are about 35 inches by 35 inches.

Friday, January 20, 2006

More Bitchin'
I've been pretty quiet this week here because well, I didn't have anything to talk about except my intense, seething hatred for Sew Crass / Sew Sleazy. I know that's not a fun thing to read about so I've just left the facts here in my previous post and added the big link to the Free To Stitch, Free To Bitch store there in the sidebar. Please go buy something if you're so inclined. Also, if you're a 43 things user, please add "Boycott Sew Fast Sew Easy Inc." to your list of things to do.
One good thing has come out of this whole mess. Someone invited me to join a new mailing list for SNB Group Organizers, and that is really cheering me up. It is giving me a bigger sense of community and some nifty ideas for things we can do in our local group. I'm really glad someone put this together.

More Stitchin'
Enough of that stuff. What's going on with the knitting?
Well...I seriously think this is the weekend I finish that damn horseshoe lace baby blanket. I've got about ten more rows of garter stitch and then some cute scallop crochet edging to apply to two sides and I'm DONE. I've been just trying to focus on the blanket all week and it has totally paid off. Next week I get to finish the Noro Charlotte's Web Shawl if I'm lucky.

No, I am not participating in the Knitting Olympics. You guys go though! Have fun! I just have too many already started things I need to be working on. I can't be starting something else just now. Besides, I really hate the Winter Olympics. The skating just hasn't been the same since there is no longer the threat of anyone getting bashed in the knee by a redneck with a baseball bat. I'm joining this instead:


My plans for this weekend include finishing that blanket, dying some yarn in my old crock-pot, (Don't worry, I have a new one for food) and doing my section of The Knitting. If you'd like to work on The Knitting too, just send an email to destructionsmistress (at) and she'll add you to the list.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Stitchin & Bitchin

I got the following lovely missive from the fine folks at Yahoo today:

Sew Fast/Sew Easy Inc. has notified Yahoo! Inc. ("Yahoo!") that service and/or trademark(s) proprietary to Sew Fast/Sew Easy Inc. were used in connection with the
Yahoo!® Group Stitch_n_bitch_arkansas. Sew Fast/Sew Easy Inc. has further notified Yahoo! that the Stitch_n_bitch_arkansas group is not authorized to use the mark(s) in question. Yahoo! respects the rights of both its users and the owners and rights holders of intellectual property. Accordingly, Yahoo! intends to expeditiously remove or disable access to the mark(s) in question. PLEASE BE ADVISED THAT UNLESS THE MARK(S) IN QUESTION ARE REMOVED FROM THE GROUP AND GROUP URL, OR ACCESS TO THE MARK(S) IN THE GROUP AND GROUP URL ARE DISABLED, WITHIN FORTY-EIGHT (48) HOURS, YAHOO! INTENDS TO DISABLE ACCESS TO YOUR GROUP.

After I calmed down and stopped thinking about flying out to Sew Fast Sew Sleazy headquarters to kick people in the shins, I emailed Debbie Stoller & Yahoo then tried to call SFSE at the phone number provided at the bottom of the spiffy little warning letter. NOBODY ANSWERED THEIR PHONE. They know what they've done and they don't want to talk about it I guess.
I'm not the type of gal to take not answering the phone for an answer so I also emailed them asking couldn't we compromise by posting a disclaimer of some kind with a link to their website on our main page? I got a form letter type deal telling me the penalties for trademark infringement. I take that as a no.
Debbie wrote me back pronto saying she was about to go meet with her lawyers and that she'd let me know what they said by tomorrow. I went ahead to my weekly SNB meeting, and her answer was in my in-box by the time I got home. (How many other "big name" people are that responsive to what must have been at least 50-60 emails or more since SFSE threatened all the groups using Stitch N Bitch in their titles? Yay for Debbie.) This was the answer that she sent to me and posted to the groups:

Dear Stitchers 'n Bitchers:
It has come to my attention that the moderators of a number of Stitch 'n Bitch groups who host their mailing lists using Yahoo Groups' free mailing list services have received notices from Yahoo advising them that they must delete the wording STITCH N BITCH from their Yahoo!Group URL and any references to STITCH N BITCH in the GROUP itself. This notice is a result of an objection filed by Sew Fast Sew Easy Inc., a New York company, who is claiming rights to this wording.
A number of you have been emailing me asking what to do. I have spoken about this matter with my attorneys. First of all, please realize that you are not being asked in this notice to change the name of your actual knitting group, just the group designation you use on the Yahoo group and Yahoo URL, if you want to keep using their free email services. Unfortunately, there is no immediate recourse with Yahoo other than to make the change at this time. They require this as soon as anybody makes any kind of claim--they do not evaluate the merits of the claim. This being the case, one idea is to simply change any references to STITCH n BITCH in your Yahoo Group name to some alternative such as SNB (i.e, StitchnBitch-NYC would become SNB-NYC. Easier to type, too!) Your group moderator can easily make this change via the Yahoogroups control panel.
I know how much we value these lists as a way to communicate with our groups, and I think we should all try to avoid the possible loss of our group lists if Yahoo proceeds with a shut down. Also, I'd like you to remind you that the group moderator can export the members list at any time (just go to "members" then "export"), and save it somewhere special.
Finally, if you decide to change your Yahoo Groups name or move your list, please be sure to have some one from your group let Brenda know so she can change it on her site.

Debbie Stoller

I went ahead and changed my group name to hopefully avoid having it deleted, but dammit. This is WRONG! I hope there is eventually some kind of court battle to silence these assholes. The name they have trademarked is "Stitch and Bitch Cafe" in reference to SEWING, not knitting, and the term is more widely linked with Debbie's books and with knitting in general than with sewing. A simple Google Search will clue you in on that. It is FAR more likely someone would stumble upon them while searching for us, and I really doubt anyone would be confused.

They started harassing people about 8 or 9 months ago.
For more details on this saga, check out the recap on Girl From Auntie. Follow all the links there, and your blood will be boiling.
I will NEVER buy any of their company's products and you shouldn't either.

Sunday, January 08, 2006

I Dyed Fiber Today

Well, sort fiber. haha
This is step one of my crazy hairdo master plan.
Step 2 is blonde/orangey streaks. If it turns out ugly the whole thing will get covered with darker red or purple or something.
I get bored sometimes and I take it out on my hair.

Saturday, January 07, 2006

The Secret Pal 7 Questionaire

I usually just point to a previous version of the SP questioniare, but I think maybe some things have changed since I filled out the first one for SP4 back whenever that was, so I'm filling it out all brand new just for you new Secret Pal person. Don't you feel special? Everyone else can read it too in case they're curious or nosey or just bored. Here we go....

1. Are you a yarn snob (do you prefer higher quality and/or natural fibers)? Do you avoid Red Heart and Lion Brand? I don't avoid Lion Brand, but I do try to avoid Red Heart because it's so scratchy it kills me. I also try to avoid anything scratchy like Reynolds Lopi..that shit is the devil.

2. Do you spin? Crochet? YES and YES I do.

3. What do you use to store your needles/hooks in? I store my circulars in their original package. They're mostly Addi Turbos. I store straight needles in a really nice hanging thingie and in an old flower pot. I store dpn's in a cloth zipper bag. I'm all set for needle storage, thanks.

4. How long have you been knitting? Would you consider your skill level to be beginner, intermediate or advanced? I've been knitting since roughly April of 2004? yeah..that sounds about right. I don't believe in skill levels. I'm not afraid to try anything so I don't worry about my skill level.

5. Do you have an Amazon or other online wish list? Yep. I have an Amazon Wishlist.

6. What's your favorite scent? (for candles, bath products etc.) Vanilla and Nag Champa incense and Karma from Lush. I like just about all the Lush products and the Philosophy stuff.

7. Do you have a sweet tooth? Favorite candy? Yep, I like chocolate and orange flavor candies of all types.

8. What other crafts or Do-It-Yourself things do you like to do? Man, if I have a book I can do anything. Lately I'm all about the gardening. We're starting a square foot garden in the yard this spring. I also sometimes paint and draw and do a little beading/jewelry making and sew a little and screen print and I own over 100 bowling pins that I'm trying to use up in various crafty ways. I'm also participating in a lot of mail art/postcard swaps lately.

9. What kind of music do you like? Can your computer/stereo play MP3s? (if your buddy wants to make you a CD) I like most music. Not too fond of hip-hop or rap or that lets all "sing" as though posessed by cookie monster from sesame street type stuff. haha Yep, I can play mp3's. I have an ipod shuffle and I'm not afraid to use it.

10. What's your favorite color? Or--do you have a color family/season/palette you prefer? Any colors you just can't stand? I wear a lot of blue, but I'm trying to get away from that because frankly, I'm starting to look smurfy. Black is always good, as are red and green and earth tones and purples and yeah...just anything. I don't look so hot in yellow though, so maybe not yellow.

11. What is your family situation? Do you have any pets? I live with a husbeast, a 13 year old boy child, two cats, a 17 year old dog, and two hermit crabs.

12. Do you wear scarves, hats, mittens or ponchos? I wear scarves and hats. Not so much with the mittens or ponchos.

13. What is/are your favorite yarn/s to knit with? I like all the Noro yarns. Socks That Rock is my new sock yarn crush. Koigu KPPM is nice too. I also like just anything soft and pretty and everything I've gotten from Knitpicks has been awesome.

14. What fibers do you absolutely *not* like? The aforementioned Lopi, anything scratchy, and Fun Fur-ish novelty crap makes me want to stab my eyes out.

15. What is/are your current knitting obsession/s? Lace patterns are getting a lot of attention lately, but I wouldn't say I'm obsessed. really..I can stop any time.

16. What is/are your favorite item/s to knit? Hats. I like them cause they're fast and people seem to enjoy them. Socks are great too.

17. What are you knitting right now? hahahaha Just look at the last post to get the lowdown on that stuff.

18. Do you like to receive handmade gifts? Sure! Who doesn't?

19. Do you prefer straight or circular needles? Depends on the project.

20. Bamboo, aluminum, plastic? Again, it depends on the yarn and the project.

21. Do you own a yarn winder and/or swift? Yep. I have both.

22. How did you learn to knit? I learned from the internet. I'd bought several how to knit books over the years and always failed. I didn't know anyone who knew how to knit, and I'm a visual learner so I was screwed till I found videos online showing how to do each stitch. I freaked out that night and made a swatch with garter stitch, stockinette, ribbing, and some yarn over eyelets. Once it clicked it REALLY clicked and I was off.

23. How old is your oldest UFO? Probably that would be the Dr. Who Scarf I've started over a couple of times since I first learned to knit.

24. What is your favorite animated character or a favorite animal/bird? I like garden gnomes. I also like sheep and cats.

25. What is your favorite holiday? Halloween!

26. Is there anything that you collect? I have a lot of gnomes and crystal ball type glass paperweights

27. What knitting magazine subscriptions do you have? Vogue Knitting, Knit.1, Interweave Knits, and SpinOff.

28. Any books, yarns, needles or patterns out there you are dying to get your hands on? That stuff is all on the Amazon Wishlist I think.

29. Are there any new techniques you'd like to learn? I think needle felting sculpture is gonna be my next tangent.

30. Are you a sock knitter? What are your foot measurements? Yep. I wear women's size 7.5 - 8

31. When is your birthday? (mm/dd) August 22nd 1972

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Happy New Year!

2005 Recap
I finished the following projects in 2005:
6 hats
2 scarves
3 shawls (2 knit, one crochet)
3 pair of socks
1 pair of baby booties
3 skeins of handspun yarn that is actually nice enough I'd use it.

2006 Goals
Finish at least 1 knitted or crocheted item per month.
Spin at least one good sized skein of yarn per month.
I think if I were to finish everything on my WIP list I could accomplish that.
This is the list as it stands today:
Klaralund - I really don't know why I haven't finished this thing. It basicly just needs blocked and seamed up.
Lacy Baby Blanket - It needs two more rows of the lace pattern, then the edging.
Irish Hiking Scarf - I just feel kind of ehhh about it now. I might rip it.
Wavy scarf - same thing...ehhh
Julia's Poncho - I hate the yarn and it's super boring. I'd burn it, but she claims to still want the thing.
Cheap Fab Throw - It got really big and hot to work on. I need to just bite the bullet and finish it. I will NEVER make another full size throw/afghan all in one big piece though.
Noro Ruffles Scarf - Almost done...this is my snb project, and that is about the only time I ever touch it. The Cashmerino Ruffles is getting frogged. I just looks limp and sad.
Dr. Who Scarf - I made some progress on this during the unfortunate illness I got for Xmas.
Lady Eleanor Entrelac Stole - It's about half done and starting to be a pain in the butt to flip over so much.
V-Neck Raglan Sweater - I started this a few months ago, and it is up to where I need to try it on to see where to separate the arms. I really really want to get back to it, but other crap keeps getting in the way.
Clapotis - This was a secret project. I'm almost up to the straight rows and using cheapo black Caron Simply Soft. This will be a gift for someone at some point.
Charlotte's Web Shawl - I know I said I would never make one, but then the pattern was on sale and I figured it wouldn't take forever if I used fatter yarn so I did it. Noro Kureyon. It needs about three more double repeats of the pattern to be huge enough. (so 48 more long rows of knitting, plus the edging) This is what I've been working on since I got over the sick.

There are also two or three pair of socks that need finishing up, but I'm not counting those because you always need a sock going, right?