Sheep to Shawl

If your in Savannah tomorrow and you love all things fiber, you may want to find your to the Sheep to Shawl Festival on Oatland Island.  The Wild Fibre “knitting posse” and I will be there for some sheep shearing and alpaca groping petting.  I’ll be taking to camera along for the unfortunates missing the action (shearing, face painting, fluffy animals – tell me that’s not action-y)!

Thanks to everyone who have commented on the contest so far (and thank you for anniversary and surgery wishes).  I’ll be bringing the laptop with me for some post-op, heavily medicated blogging (because I doubt I’ll be getting much sleep that first night).  It may be worth the effort to check back in soon for festival pics and well as the entertainment one might get from the delusional ramblings of a paper gowned convalescent.  Ta.

Update:  Hey!  Had a blast at the Sheep to Shawl.  There plenty of new pics over the Sheep to Shawl 2008 Flickr set, enjoy!

08sheeptoshawl0024.jpg

The Right to Bear Yarns

Generally, I’ve been in a very good mood as of late.  My breast augmentation is in eleven days.  Our fifth wedding anniversary is on April 5th, and I got a highly anticipated book yesterday (Knitalong:  Celebrating the Tradition of Knitting Together by Larissa Brown and Martin John Brown).

One thing, though, has been bothering me, just one thing…

Witching Hour

Remember this?  I dyed this 100% wool, fingering weight, a while back.  I love the colors.  I adore the colors.  I have yet to find a project for this yarn.  It pains me to see it sitting there in my knitting basket.  I am feeling generous, however, maybe you could find a purpose for this yarn…

I like that idea.  Very much so.  SO, let’s go with that.  Reply to this post stating what you have planned for this 1200 yards of fingering weight wool.  I’ll select a random winner by April 5th (it’s a good day).  I would like to see a lovely project come from this yarn, so I ask that you only post if you have an immediate use for it (don’t let it sit in your stash for six months… ahem).  If you have trouble, you can always use Ravelry’s pattern explorer, quite handy. 

Good luck!

House Guest

Please excuse the brief absence.  My mother came to visit for a few days, it being her first time at our new home and in Savannah, we had much to do and see.  We showed Mom our favorite city locals – Forsyth Park (the Fragrance Garden is blooming and redolent right now, so run over there and breath deep), Fabrika, Wild Fibre, Fort Pulaski (but more importantly, USCG Station Tybee), Back in the Day Bakery, the Savannah Wildlife Refuge, and much more.  Thankfully, there were no trips to the malls or River Street. 

Mr. Yarn Bearer’s first duty station with the Coast Guard was in Key West, Florida, where Wee One was born, as well (Conch Baby).  After living in that tourist trap, I’ll never complain about the tourists here, in Savannah.  But, for those may one day find themselves in the Hostess City, here’s some advice:  learn how to maneuver a roundabout and pay attention to the crosswalk signals (so, if it shows a big red hand, don’t walk in front of my moving vehicle). 

My knitting suffered a little, though I was dutiful to Wee One’s Girl’s Games Sweater (finished the front and only three inches left on the back).  I was flattered to know that Mom and my Aunt Janet had been coveting the 3/4 Apron, hence the trip to Fabrika.  I grabbed fabric identical to the original apron for AJ’s and Mom picked out some Alexander Henry fabrics in blues and greens.  I wished I had thought to take pictures, but Mom left this morning with her new apron in tow and AJ’s will be on its way to Tampa shortly.

Maybe I’ll finish one of my knitting projects someday soon, please send finishing vibes my way as I am itching to start a new tank top that will fit my future boobies.

Is this a dream?

Wee One turned four years old in January.  When she was born, I breast fed her for ten months before she finally lost interest.  At the time, I was in a size 34A bra, but then my milk dried up.  There was nothing left, of my boobs, that is.  It looked as if they were never there to begin with (just look at this photo and you’ll see what I’m talking about).

Before that, though, I was pretty content with my breast size, never once had I considered breast augmentation.  That changed about a month after I stopped breast feeding.  So it has been three years now and I’m finally getting my breast augmentation, April 2nd.  Less than three weeks from now, can you believe it?! 

But let’s just stop for a moment.  Before anyone tries to tell me what I’m doing is wrong or send me hate mail, let me tell you this story.  When Wee One was about two years old, Mr. Yarn Bearer, Wee One, and I were in an empty flea market.  We were the only people there, except for the three, male workers.  On this day, I believe I was wearing a close fitting, strappy-type top, black, a pair of fitting jeans, and wearing make up (I always do).  Now, I know I’m not gorgeous, but I know that my face doesn’t look so bad that one would question my gender.  As I get closer to these two guys, I noticed that they are staring.  When I get within ear shot, one says to other, “Is that a guy or a girl?”  (still staring).

The other guy replies, “I think it’s a girl.”  (still staring at me).

That was not the only incident I was ever aware of and I’m sure there were many that I was oblivious to.  So if you still want to blast me for all of this, go ahead…  But I’m still getting my boobies.  So nah.

Check back soon for a celebratory bra burning, mid-April.

Amimono ga daisuki!

The past few days have been devoted to learning crochet.  Not only learning how to crochet, but learning from Japanese crochet patterns.  It may sound intimidating, but it could not be any simpler (with the help of the Internet). 

Recently, I have been falling in love with the Japanese pattern books and websites.  The zakka patterns have such effortless style and grace, what is not to love.  I am loving this site, which is what started the “must learn crochet” mentality.  More specifically, the zakka

So many free patterns, it took a few hours to really settle on my first crochet project.  What did I pick?  Why, this lovely apron!  Its simplicity is so lovely, to me.  Doesn’t it make you want to jump in the kitchen and whip up some sashimi?! 

Tuft Love Shrug

Close out Rowan Big Wool Tuft is sooo tempting, isn’t it?  But when you order twenty balls of it, what do you do with it?  I sat here, racking my brains trying to come up with something, anything.  Mr. Yarn Bearer almost got a blanket for his rack at the Station, though, we both realized that the “shag” wouldn’t match the decor (or make it into the door without a roar of laughter from Mr. Yarn Bearer’s shipmates).

On a whim, the Tuft Love Shrug was born.  It doesn’t use up twenty balls, but at least I made a dent.  This pattern is sized for 4T, but would be easy to customize for larger size.

Tuft Love Shrug

Tuft Love Shrug

By The Yarn Bearer (aka Kayla Dyches)

Yarn:  Four balls of Rowan Big Wool Tuft in Powder Puff (this pattern used all but one yard of those four balls, so if you plan on modifying, expect at least another two or three balls)

Needle:  US 17 24″ circular

Yarn needle

Gauge:  2 sts = 1″

2008_0310tuftlove0003.jpg

Pattern:

CO 16 sts.  Work k1, p1 rib for 5″, change to St st and work until piece measures 33″ from beginning.  Work in k1, p1 rib (again) for 5″, BO.  Piece should measure 38″. 

Fold in half to make a long tube and beginning at CO edge, seam 11″ inward.  Repeat at BO edge.

Collar ribbing goes as follows:  Beginning at an arm hole edge, pick up 30 sts around entire opening (top and bottom), rib (k1, p1) for 5″ and BO all sts as follows:  Cut yarn leaving a tail about three times the circumference of the opening, thread onto yarn needle.  *Thread needle through first two sts as if to purl, pull through.  Thread needle through first st only, as if to knit, and drop st off needle.  Rep from * to end.  Fasten off last st and weave in all ends.

2008_0310tuftlove0002.jpg

(If you plan on altering the pattern, measure around the victim’s recipient’s wrist and add two or three inches, multiply that number by two, and there’s your cast on.  As for length, standing with arms stretched out to sides, measure from cuff to cuff and add two inches – or more if you/they like longer sleeves.  Consider ribbing for a few extra inches as it is meant to reach mid-forearm.  Seam arms until about 2″ less than length from cuff to armpit.  When picking up stitches for collar/edging, it’s quite fluffy and a bit hard to find the right loops, so just wing it and pick up as many as you can, making sure to get an even number of sts.  Rib the same length you used for the cuff ribbing).

A word on copyright.  These things I’ve designed are for personal and non-profit use only.  Make them for yourself, make them as gifts, or make them for charity fund raisers/auctions.  You may not sell items made from my patterns and you may not sell or give out these patterns in your store in order to sell your merchandise.  Do not reprint this pattern any where else.  Think karma.  Any questions, just ask.

Spaaah

A week ago, Mr. Yarn Bearer casually said to me, “I’m going to the bank, I’ll be back in a bit.”  Half an hour later, he comes back with a lovely pink and black package, inside is a gift certificate to the local Spa.  Before we get any further, let me just say this, he’s mine.  Reason?  You might ask (because I did), he said, “No reason, you deserve to relax.”  Ahem, again, mine.

So, today was Spaaah Day for me.  Two hours of me, me, me.  A facial (with relaxing neck rub), relaxing back treatment, hot towels, soft music, and me.  For all of the locals, I was at the Lotus Day Spa in Port Wentworth (on the border of Port Wentworth and Rincon on US 21).  Oh, sweet serenity.  I highly recommend them because it felt like I was floating on my way out.

Happy Things

I pride myself in being completely satisfied and content with small, unassuming objects.  Mere trifles, I find, are such a delight.  I ran across this shop on Etsy this morning. 

Don’t these little decals making you squee?!  Go ahead, let it out, SQUEE with JOY!  And look, double squee!  Wee One’s room has still yet to be painted and decorated (I know, bad mommy), but Holly’s Vinyl Wall Art has my brain buzzing with ideas.  Now to convince Mr. Yarn Bearer…

Theatre de Tricotage

Unlike most, I don’t have cable/digital/satellite television.  During our last PCS (permanent change of station, for the civilians in the bunch), we agreed to experiment life without the boob tube. 

It has been ten months so far and we haven’t lost our sanity, we’re still informed (Internet and gossip), and I get SO much knitting done.  Yes, life without cable has increased my productivity, just look at my side bar.  How many projects did I finish in 2007?  How many have been completed in 2008 (even though it’s March)? 

Big.  Freaking.  Difference.

I won’t lie to you, though, we still watch movies.  After the wee one goes to bed and Mr. Yarn Bearer is standing duty, I pop in a DVD.  These past few months, I’ve made it a point to find the most agreeable knitting-movies.  There’s a shelf in the “movie closet” dedicated to my “knitting movies.”  Men will find it shocking to know that most of them do not induce lots of crying.  Trust me, you do not want to be reduced it a blubbering puddle of woe and empathy in the middle of your Phoenix Cardigan

Here’s a few a tome of my all-time favorite movies to knit to (also known as a “living document,” in no order, of course):

1.  Empire Records (a tribute to the Seattle scene)

2.  Benny & Joon

3.  Ever After

4.  Superstar  (go drink a bottle of yourself)

5.  Spirited Away

6.  Dolores Claiborne (I watch this because it reminds me of my mother… really)

7.  Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon

8.  The Godfather (all three)

9.  Divine Secret of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood (hello, I’m from the South)

10.  28 Days (I want my foreskin back)

11.  Hope Floats

12.  Master and Commander the Far Side of the World

13.  Practical Magic

14.  What’s Eating Gilbert Grape

15.  Mona Lisa Smile

16.  Sabrina (both)

17.  Breakfast at Tiffany’s (hell, anything with Audrey Hepburn)

18.  High Fidelity

19.  The Darwin Awards (the Piano Man, he rocks)

20.  Princess Mononoke

21.  Chocolat

Go ahead, give the list a shot and get back to me (in a couple months).